Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Drivers in France Must Carry Breathalyzers

The Telegraph reports that drivers in France now have to carry two(!) single-use breathalysers in their cars at all times.  I didn't even know there was such a thing as a single-use breathalyser.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Are You Too Old for the Olympics

The Washington Post has an article that will show you which Olympic sports you are still young enough for.

People Used to Sleep Twice As Often

According to the BBC, the idea of sleeping right through the night is a fairly modern one.  Apparently in antiquity people would sleep for a few hours in the early evening then get up for a few hours then go back to bed.
His book At Day's Close: Night in Times Past, published four years later, unearths more than 500 references to a segmented sleeping pattern - in diaries, court records, medical books and literature, from Homer's Odyssey to an anthropological account of modern tribes in Nigeria.
Much like the experience of Wehr's subjects, these references describe a first sleep which began about two hours after dusk, followed by waking period of one or two hours and then a second sleep. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Words We Don't Have in English

I think I may have blogged about this sort of thing before but I liked this list of foreign words that we don't have in English.

Some favourites:
Arigata-meiwaku (Japanese): An act someone does for you that you didn’t want to have them do and tried to avoid having them do, but they went ahead anyway, determined to do you a favor, and then things went wrong and caused you a lot of trouble, yet in the end social conventions required you to express gratitude

 Ilunga (Tshiluba, Congo): A person who is ready to forgive any abuse for the first time, to tolerate it a second time, but never a third time

 L’esprit de l’escalier (French): usually translated as “staircase wit,” is the act of thinking of a clever comeback when it is too late to deliver it

 Pena ajena (Mexican Spanish): The embarrassment you feel watching someone else’s humiliation

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Evolution of Basketball Uniforms

Dubly has an infographic showing the evolution of the proffessional basketball uniform.  Interestingly it has been getting larger since the 1960s'.