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Old 12-15-2011, 11:41 AM   #81
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Isn't that the cutest thing ever? I want one
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Old 12-16-2011, 04:56 PM   #82
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Me too.
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Old 12-22-2011, 07:24 PM   #83
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She said she never held a hockey stick in her life. I don't know about that but it's still awesome.

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Old 12-28-2011, 10:14 PM   #84
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Texas Teen Ben Breedlove Posted Powerful Videos Before Christmas Death - ABC News
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Old 12-29-2011, 01:31 AM   #85
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Check this out:


Quote:
DODGER by name, dodger by nature.
This cute ginger cat is a thrifty creature — catching free bus trips from his home town.

The moggy, who was named after the Artful Dodger from Oliver Twist, has taken to hopping on and off the public transport at the local bus station.

The 15-year-old Tom even sits on bemused passengers' laps as the bus takes up to ten mile round trips from Bridport to Charmouth in Dorset.

Dodger is such a regular customer that some of the drivers take tins of cat food to work with them to give to him.

They even know what stop to let him off at.

At the end of his journeys the eldery cat returns to his home and owner Fee Jeanes.

Mrs Jeanes, 44, believes Dodger first took a liking to the buses as they are warm like greenhouses when the sun is on them.


Cat stop ... Dodger patiently waits for the bus
BNPS
But the curious pet has since ended up being taken for several rides.
She said: "We moved here 19 months ago and our house backs on to the bus station.

"He is an old boy and is very friendly. At first Dodger kept going to the bus station because people there fed him tit-bits and scraps of food.

"But then he started climbing on board the buses because they are almost like greenhouses when it is sunny.


Home sweet home ... Dodger with his owner Fee Jeanes
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"Then last week I found out he had travelled to Charmouth and back, which is a ten mile round trip.
"I hadn't seen him all morning until my daughter Emily told me one of her friends had just seen him on the bus at Charmouth.

"I couldn't believe it and panicked. I got into my car to go off and look for him and then at that moment the bus pulled up near our house and lo and behold he got off.

"He had fallen asleep on board and nobody knew about it. When the driver realised he knew who Dodger was and where he lived and kept him on board.


Adventurous ... Dodger returns home after a ride
BNPS
"That afternoon I saw Dodger climb on board another bus and I rushed to tell the driver.
"I was shocked when she told me Dodger was always on there and liked to sit on the seats because they are warm from where people have been sitting.

"The drivers buy cat food for him and he sits on people's laps.

"Sometimes he just sits in the middle of the road and waits for the bus to turn up before he gets on."


Dodger is a familiar sight to regular bus passengers and drivers, but Mrs Jeanes still receives several calls a week asking if she has lost a ginger cat.

A spokesman for bus firm First said they didn't mind Dodger on their buses.

He said: "The drivers have been asked not to feed it because we recognise that cat has an owner and we do not want to discourage it from returning home for food and shelter, but in principle we do not have a problem with it being around the bus station.

"Given this cat is elderly we suspect it would be eligible for free travel, perhaps a bus puss, if such a thing existed."
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Old 12-29-2011, 01:58 PM   #86
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That's so cool that everyone kinda took it upon themselves to take care of that cat during his trips. Sounds like he leads a pretty adventurous life .

I like the other stories I've seen in here, too, in recent times . This thread rules.
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Old 02-01-2012, 08:23 PM   #87
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Foreign Policy has a really nice slideshow up right now of the 2012 Harbin Ice Festival, which just ended. Harbin is in extreme northeastern China, so it's one of the world's colder cities, and every year since 1965 the locals build an "Ice City," an entire life-size complex of buildings made of ice with fluorescent lights inside, as a celebration to brighten up the winter and attract tourists from all over China. I loathe winter, but I thought this was so cool!





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Old 02-01-2012, 08:32 PM   #88
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Yeah, I think even winter-haters would have to like this.

I love winter, but that far north might be a wee bit too cold for me. Still, that is incredibly neat, and I like that they do it to brighten up the days up there. The colors are gorgeous, and the second picture looks so much like a postcard. Very pretty.

I can't believe they built life-size sculptures, too. That's impressive, and time-consuming-I assume/hope they wear heavy gloves, because I can imagine how cold their hands would get after a while of doing that .
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Old 02-10-2012, 12:42 PM   #89
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What a good kid

A 12-year-old stopped his grandmother from becoming homeless by appealing to strangers to donate money to help save her home from foreclosure.

Noah Lamaide, 12, managed to stop the house going into foreclosure by appealing to people through the charity website he set up two years previously to help those in need after Hurricane Katrina.

A few weeks later enough money had come in from across the U.S. to save the home of Janice Sparhawk in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.

Mrs Sparhawk, 72, who has fostered more than 100 children, became in danger of losing her home after she fell ill and got behind on her bills. Now that her home has been saved, she plans to begin fostering again.

Her grandson Noah told a local television, ''I never knew that there were so many good people in this world.''

Mrs Sparhawk also told the station: 'I called our local representative, the governor, the president, not asking for money but asking them to help me find a program and they couldn't do it. But this 12-year-old could. He saved the house.'

Noah said that he had been coming to visit his grandmother since he was young at the house, which has been in the family for generations.

Noah set up his charity called Noah's Dream Catcher Network when he was just ten years old to help those still recovering from Hurricane Katrina.

People can donate to community projects through the site and will receive a small keychain of a dream catcher in return. Dream catchers are popular in Native American cultures and said to protect children from nightmares.

The 12-year-old writes on his website: 'My dad lost his job that he worked at for 18 years and I know how scary it can be to have a parent without a job.'
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:08 PM   #90
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A really, really powerful website aimed at rape victims taking ownership of the words that were uttered to them.

Unbreakable
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:46 PM   #91
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Eeeesh. Those words are chilling and make my stomach turn.

But a very interesting way to take on such a horrific topic. If it helps even one victim, that's always a good thing .
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:48 PM   #92
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This is really just one of those 'interesting, yet uncategorizable' stories. Though it might make you feel good if you're fluent in more than one language.

Wired, Apr. 24
Quote:
To judge a risk more clearly, it may help to consider it in a foreign language.

A series of experiments on more than 300 people from the US and Korea found that thinking in a second language reduced deep-seated, misleading biases that unduly influence how risks and benefits are perceived. “Would you make the same decisions in a foreign language as you would in your native tongue?” asked psychologists led by Boaz Keysar of the University of Chicago in an April 18 Psychological Science study. “It may be intuitive that people would make the same choices regardless of the language they are using, or that the difficulty of using a foreign language would make decisions less systematic. We discovered, however, that the opposite is true: Using a foreign language reduces decision-making biases,” wrote Keysar’s team.

Psychologists say human reasoning is shaped by two distinct modes of thought: one that’s systematic, analytical and cognition-intensive, and another that’s fast, unconscious and emotionally charged. In light of this, it’s plausible that the cognitive demands of thinking in a non-native, non-automatic language would leave people with little leftover mental horsepower, ultimately increasing their reliance on quick-and-dirty cogitation. Equally plausible, however, is that communicating in a learned language forces people to be deliberate, reducing the role of potentially unreliable instinct. Research also shows that immediate emotional reactions to emotively charged words are muted in non-native languages, further hinting at deliberation.
I read six languages competently (don't have spoken/written fluency in all) and while this scenario isn't covered by the linked study, one thing I do notice is that when reading in a language other than English--and especially, when reading about topics I've already read extensively on in English--I'm very aware of the way metaphors embedded in the text, often quite subtle ones, direct and thus delimit the reader's perspective on the topic. I'm not talking Captain Obvious stuff like political propaganda here, I mean philosophy, personal essays, 'straight' news reporting etc. Whereas when I'm reading in English, it takes a concerted, conscious effort to notice that level of the language. I wonder if this too is a consequence of the forced "deliberation" they're describing.
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Old 05-02-2012, 05:54 AM   #93
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That's pretty interesting. (I am competent enough in several languages to convey clearly that I don't speak the language.) I did enjoy the bolded contradiction. While I don't speak any other language, I notice a little similarity when I am moving from more familiar types of prose to, say, scientific writing or legalese. It is as if the type of deliberation frees up other parts of the brain to make quick connections without baggage. Clicking.

Interesting too about the immediate emotional reactions to charged words being muted in non-native languages. I think a case can be made that it is deliberation that is muting this response. But I wonder also whether the actual native language word holds a symbolic power that the non-native word does not possess. The non-native word allows a distance more so than it requires a deliberation, frees the brain of expectation and conditioning.

This seems to fit in with the proposal of the study.
Quote:
We propose that these effects arise because a foreign language provides greater cognitive and emotional distance than a native tongue does.
However, I found this interesting also from your link.

Quote:
Recall was compared to recognition, and a variety of types of emotion words were studied, including taboo terms, and phrases likely to be learned in childhood (reprimands). Superior memory for emotion words was obtained in both the recall and recognition tasks, but this occurred in both the first and second language and indeed was stronger, for some stimuli, in the second language. This suggests that, even for bilingual speakers who acquire their second late (after age 12), words in the second language retain rich emotional associations.
Do you have a subscription to this site? I seemed to be able to only link to the abstract.
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Old 05-02-2012, 05:30 PM   #94
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Yeah, sorry, I couldn't find a free source for that study. Though the Wired writer was careful to specify "immediate emotional reactions," it's still a somewhat misleading citation--that study wasn't comparing intensity of emotional response upon hearing the same words in L1 vs. L2 (though that was part of the process); rather, it was comparing the degree to which 'emotion words,' to which subjects had just been exposed, were more readily recalled/recognized afterwards than 'neutral words,' in L1 vs. L2. So, they didn't challenge earlier researchers' findings (which they summarize) that emotion words evoke a stronger response, in the moment, in L1 vs. L2. They did challenge one earlier study which had found that the memory advantage (subsequent recall/recognition) of emotion words was more pronounced for L1 than L2--they found, on the contrary, that at least for emotionally negative words, the memory advantage was more pronounced in L2; in fact, subjects actually remembered more negative words just heard in L2 than just heard in L1, so their L2 negative recall was better, period, not merely better relative to positive (about the same in both), neutral (much better in L1) or total overall word recall. They speculate that negative words may be more subject to suppression in memory in L1.

Since this isn't my field I'm unsure how significant this is, but--one thing that did seem a bit problematic to me was that they were comparing their subjects' responses to spoken words to an earlier study in which subjects were shown written words.
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Old 05-02-2012, 07:13 PM   #95
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Certainly not my field, my expertise nor my competency, but I am fascinated with language and the brain and the intertwine so any kind of study like this is welcome.

OK, rereading I do see in the part I quoted that it stressed recall/recognition over emotional response. I still find it curiously intriguing that some of of the stimuli was stronger in the second language--although I will cede to those of you here who speak other languages.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:00 AM   #96
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Abandoned Puppy Becomes Seeing-Eye Dog for Another | Video - ABC News
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Old 05-14-2012, 07:00 PM   #97
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Don Ritchie, Angel of The Gap - who helped save 500 people from suicide - dies at 85 | News.com.au

Quote:
Mr Ritchie spent 50 years coaxing desperate people back from The Gap, the notorious cliff at Watsons Bay where hundreds have died or thought about taking their lives.
He helped save 500 despairing souls - usually with little more than compassion, a warm smile and a hot cuppa.
"Those who knew him knew he was a very strong person and a very capable person," Mr Ritchie's daughter Sue said today.
Federal MP Malcolm Turnbull, whose electorate includes The Gap, added: "A true hero, one of our greatest Australians. RIP."
Born in Vaucluse in 1926, Mr Ritchie died peacefully at home on Old South Head Road, Watsons Bay yesterday.
The former navy seaman turned life insurance salesman was never one to shout about his exploits.
He helped because he could.
Ms Ritchie said: "It was just something that he saw and that he had to do something about."
New South Wales Mental Health Minister Kevin Humphries recalled when Mr Ritchie was named a Local Hero in the 2011 Australian of the Year Awards.
"Upon accepting the award Mr Ritchie urged people to never be afraid to speak to those most in need," he said.
"Always remember the power of the simple smile, a helping hand, a listening ear and a kind word."
A funeral will be held in Sydney on Friday.
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Old 05-29-2012, 06:25 PM   #98
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Incredible



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One man’s trash is another man’s treasure — and for the Logan family, the treasure was hiding inside an old camera.

Addison Logan was browsing yard sales with his grandmother in Wichita, Kan., last week when an old Polaroid camera caught his eye. He bought it for $1 because he thought it was cool.

The surprise came later that day, when he opened the device and discovered a photo of his deceased uncle inside.

“I took the cartridge out and the photo was produced already,” he said.

Addison went downstairs to show his grandmother what he had found, and she couldn’t believe her eyes.

“I thought he found it somewhere in the house,” Lois Logan said. “He had no idea that that was his uncle.”

Her grandson never met his uncle Scott, who died in 1989, before his nephew was born.

“I was just blown away,” Addison said after realizing the man was his uncle.

Lois Logan recognized the other person in the photo, as well: It was her son’s old girlfriend, Susan Ely. She figures the picture was taken during Scott Logan’s senior year of high school or freshman year in college, 10 years before a car accident took his life.

Meanwhile, no one knows where the camera came from, who took the photo, or why it remained stuck in the camera for decades.

Lois Logan wondered if Addison, 13, had bought the camera from the Elys after a spring cleaning of their daughter’s old things.

“I thought that maybe we had stopped at her parents’ house,” she said. Her son, Blake Logan — Scott’s brother and Addison’s father — went back to the house where his son bought the camera later that day in hopes of finding some clues, but came back empty-handed.

The person who sold Addison the camera said he didn’t know Ely or Scott Logan, and couldn’t recall where the camera had come from. The seller admitted he likes to go to a lot of yard sales and he can’t remember when or where he picked it up — so it appears as though the miraculous photo will remain a mystery.

“It’s a very rare coincidence,” Lois Logan said.

Blake Logan has since shared the find with his late brother’s 26-year-old son, Dayne Logan, via Facebook.

Meanwhile, Addison is keeping the photo on his dresser, but doesn’t plan to use the camera to take any pictures of his own.

“It just looked like an old camera,” he said of the Polaroid. “I don’t even know how it works.”
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Old 06-15-2012, 03:29 PM   #99
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I found this story very inspiring:

Meghan Vogel, Ohio Track Star, Carries Runner Across Finish Line At State Competition (VIDEO)

To be honest, the Rush Limbaugh "criticism" of this story is a tempest in a teapot no matter which way you look at it.

Limbaugh didn't actually criticize Vogel, just the officials who did not disqualify the two girls. The people claiming Rush is characterizing her actions as weak are wrong. But his actual criticism in itself was also misplaced and overwrought as the officials chose not to disqualify them because no advantage had been gained by the assistance Vogel lent.
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:02 PM   #100
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I don't even think that Rush could walk two miles, let alone run the distance. That's really all I thought about his comments when I read the story.
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