In this week’s edition: slowed-down UFOs, invincible McDonald’s hamburgers, and abstinence-only education in China.
* The best thing I’ve read all week, by far, is Jeffrey Goldberg’s account of watching a dolphin show with Fidel Castro. Hilarious. (If you’re not interested in policy, just skip over the first few paragraphs to where the aquarium story begins.)
* Psychic’s “hunch” causes a mob to destroy a crocodile sanctuary in Belize.
* Why are the UFOs reported today traveling more slowly than those reported years ago?
* Painting an optical illusion of a child on the street slows drivers.
* Psychologists have finally tackled the question that keeps me up at night: Why is it so distracting to overhear a one-sided cell phone conversation? Plus, learn a new term! “Half-a-logue.”
* Can you pass the homeopathy exam?
* Like Twinkies, apparently McDonald’s hamburgers don’t decay.
* At Mind Hacks, there’s a discussion of patients who feel as though half their bodies have been invaded by someone else. Do I smell a movie? Invasion of the Half-Body Snatchers, perhaps?
* High fashion meets hospital gowns. Sort of. (They still look like hospital gowns to me.)
* We like flattery so much, we’ll happily receive it from a computer.
* What an overlooked Russian fox breeding experiment teaches us about dogs.
* Razib Khan adds nuance to the discussion of racism among liberals and conservatives.
* Turns out the Amazon might have been home to more civilizations than we thought.
* In the wake of Glenn Beck’s rally, the L.A. Times explains the science of crowd counting.
* Dolphins use conch shells to catch fish.
* NPR takes on the myths behind the new health care law.
* American evangelical groups teach Chinese officials how to run abstinence-only education programs. Maybe what doesn’t work in the U.S. will work in China?
* Deborah Blum has a beautiful post on carbon monoxide poisoning. Really. Beautiful.
* Gene Fredericks wants to convert urban warehouses into indoor farms.
* The New York Times has a fabulous interview with a doctor who stayed behind to help her patients during Hurricane Katrina.
* David Dobbs has an excellent take on the Marc Hauser scandal.