How will we use our gifts? What difficult choices will we make–when it might be easier to hide?
Will we waste our advantages and insulation?
Will inertia be our guide, or will we follow our passions?
Will we follow dogma, or will we leap forward and be original, generous and helpful?
Will we choose a life of ease, or a life of service and adventure?
Will we wilt under criticism, or will we follow our convictions?
Will we bluff it out when we’re wrong, or will we apologize?
Will we be clever at the expense of others, or will we choose to be kind?
A cynic, or a builder?
And we get to decide again every single day.
- When a man who was diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease corticobasal syndrome looks at the numbers 2 through 9, he sees unintelligible squiggly lines.
- The disability appears to be a peculiar type of metamorphopsia, a visual defect that causes linear objects, like the lines on a grid, to look curvy or rounded.
- The study has some interesting implications on theories of consciousness.
Someone writes the number 8 on a piece of paper. You look at it, see a shape, but you can’t identify what number it is, or whether it’s a number at all. The markings just look like “spaghetti.”
It sounds strange, but that’s exactly what happened to a man who suffers from a rare neurodegenerative disease called corticobasal syndrome, and now can’t recognize the digits 2 through 9. This disease, caused by damage to the cortex and basal ganglia, often leads to memory problems and difficulty moving, but the inability to identify numbers seems to be a very rare symptom.
In a new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), a team of researchers describe how the unique disability sheds light on how the brain processes visual awareness.
The inability to identify numbers posed an immediate puzzle for researchers. If the man (named “RFS” in the paper) can read letters and words, but not numbers, that means his brain must be identifying the numbers — and then selectively discriminating against them.
- Historical American monuments and sculptures are under attack by activists.
- The monuments are accused of celebrating racist history.
- Toppling monuments is a process that often happens in countries but there’s a danger of bias.
History is not only the stuffing of Wikipedia articles but a live process involving you right now. As is evidenced bluntly by 2020, history is an undeniable force, here to change our societies and force us to re-examine everything we think and know before you can say “news cycle”. So far we’ve had one of the worst pandemics of the modern era, with thousands dead and economic livelihoods uprooted around the world. We’ve had the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement, spurred on by the murders of African-Americans by the police, unleashing pent-up frustrations at systemic injustice. We also find ourselves in an amazingly divisive election year, probably one of the worst periods of rancor in the life of the country. American “heroes” are getting re-examined left and right and statues are getting torn down.
All the upheaval places focus on the role of history in our society. How much of it do we want to own up to? How much are current American citizens responsible for the sins of their ancestors? Which men (and yes, mostly these are men) are allowed to stay up as bronze reminders of some heroic past and which ones need to finally go to the far reaches of our collective unconcious? Do Confederate monuments and statues deserve to stay as part of the legacy of the South, or does it make any sense that a period of history that lasted about 5 years and produced attitudes that were actually defeated in a bloody Civil War is allowed to percolate in the minds of the population? It’s as if a tacit agreement was kept up all these years where the victors allowed some such traditions to remain in order to foster a spirit of reconciliation.
I couldn’t care more, about some people from my past. There’s a reason they couldn’t make it my present and will have no place in my future.”
Prof. Jay Parkhe
|“It is amazing that the refugees stay sane. First the bombs, perhaps the “battle” around them, their casualties, their naked helplessness; then the flight, leaving behind everything they have worked for all their lives; then the semi-starvation and ugly hardship of the camps or the slums; and as a final cruelty, the killing diseases which only strike at them.” ― Martha Gellhorn|
“Bare” is an intensifier, effectively meaning “very” or “many” — similar to “hella” in the U.S. It originally came from Jamaican influences, but the word has worked its way into many British dialects.
I stayed up all night, and now I’m bare tired.
These are fairly self-explanatory for anyone living in England. Two of the most commonly used denominations of currency are the £5 and £10 notes (£1 only comes in coins), colloquially known as fivers and tenners. We’ll still give the award for Most Creative Currency to the Canadians, with the loonie and the toonie.
This bloke tried to charge me a tenner, but I gave him a fiver and ran.
Quite simply, “bird” means woman. It can be used to describe a girlfriend, a new acquaintance, or any woman you’re on casual terms with. Like the American slang “chick,” it doesn’t necessarily have sexist connotations, but context is key.
Bill’s bringing his new bird out tonight.
Come over tonight — all the birds will be here.
Pronounced “NAK-erd,” “knackered” means worn out or exhausted. You can be physically exhausted, or an item can be so worn out, it just needs to hit the bin (British slang for trash can).
After that gym sesh, I’m completely knackered.
Those shoes are knackered, mate. You’ve not got a new pair in years.
To “reckon” is to suspect or have a theory about something. It’s made the journey from Great Britain to the American South, where it maintains the thoughtful usage.
I reckon it’s going to rain today, and my team’s going to lose.
A bit of “cheekiness” is a quintessential part of British life. It can be hard to nail down a definition, but one that comes close is “endearingly rude.” Being cheeky is often cute, but it can be taken the wrong way, so pay attention to context.
Your son was very cheeky and grabbed a cookie off my plate when I wasn’t looking.
In the U.S., “mate” is thought of in the sense of a romantic partner, but it’s more casual for Brits. It can be used affectionately to mean “friend,” and it’s also used more informally when referring to or addressing strangers.
Johnny has been my best mate since university.
I take sugar in my coffee, mate.
Plastered, Trolleyed, Pissed, Battered, Gazeboed
It’s often said that language reflects culture. Inuits have many words for snow, and Arabic has myriad words for sand. In Britain, they have a huge volume of words for being drunk. Add “-ed” to any number of nouns or verbs, and your mates will understand you mean drunk.
After fours hours in the pub, I was completely cauliflowered.
Playing right into the stereotype, Brits really do love tea. So much so, in fact, that “cup of tea” was eventually shortened to “cuppa.” That’s right, you no longer need to clarify what’s in your cup, because everybody already knows it’s tea.
I had a lovely cuppa with my biscuits.
यार जुलाहे / प्रिय विणकरा, – गुलजार/शांता शेळके
… that today is the birthday of the Interstate Highway System? In 1956, Congress passed the Federal Highway Act, which authorized construction of the Interstate Highway System. Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the bill into law. With an original authorization of $25 billion for the construction of 41,000 miles over a 10-year period, it was the largest public works project in American history through that time.
30. International Day of Parliamentarism – 30th June
This day aims to shed light on how parliamentary systems help improve the day-to-day lives of people.
Content marketing opportunities:
- Listicle idea: X Things you didn’t know your local MP/MLA did
- Infographic idea: How is the Indian Parliament structured?
- Video idea: The best parliament houses across the world
- Podcast idea: What security measures are undertaken in the Parliament?
Brand campaign that worked:
This mini-documentary on the YouTube channel of Rajya Sabha TV tells us the story of the Indian Parliament House building.
29. International Asteroid Day – 30th June
This day aims to educate the public about the hazards of asteroid impact and what should be done in case of a credible near-object threat.
Content marketing opportunities:
- Listicle idea: X Sites around the world that show the effect of meteor strikes
- Infographic idea: What happened when the last large asteroid hit the earth?
- Video idea: Are all asteroids made of the same stuff?
- Podcast idea: What would happen if an asteroid hit the earth?
Brand campaign that worked:
We all know about the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs millions of years ago. This video by RealLifeLore examines what would happen if the earth suffers a similar hit today.