Internet Detritus #3

This certainly won’t be a daily thing but I figured I’d keep rolling while I had some momentum.

Scumbag Congress

This was a meme created by one of Henrico County’s high school students for an English assignment with the ever awesome Mrs. Berry.

Writing Prompts

Also left behind were a bucket of live crabs, a pantomime horse, a winning EuroMillions ticket, a £50,000 Rolex watch, and a set of four Power Rangers costumes.
A pilot’s training manual, a spare car wheel, the keys to a Bugatti, and a stamp album worth £250,000 were also uncovered, as were a Persian Chinchilla kitten, a food processor, a set of false teeth, a collection of 200 masks depicting the Queen, and a diamond encrusted iPhone.

All were items left in UK hotel rooms. I’d challenge students with some of the odder selections and ask them to describe the character and write the scenario that led up to leaving that particular item behind. Various games could be played by limiting words, switching character descriptions between students prior to writing the scenario etc.

Via The Telegraph by way of Neatorama

Money Laundering

It turned out the detergent wasn’t ­being used as an ingredient in some new recipe for getting high, but instead to buy drugs themselves. Tide bottles have become ad hoc street currency, with a 150-ounce bottle going for either $5 cash or $10 worth of weed or crack cocaine. On certain corners, the detergent has earned a new nickname: “Liquid gold.” The Tide people would never sanction that tag line, of course. But this unlikely black market would not have formed if they weren’t so
good at pushing their product.

via NY Mag but begging to be led into with the idea of the rai stone rings, dog teeth, or any other odd currency. Once your students are convinced we wouldn’t use any odd form of currency you can move on to detergent.1


Old Conrad lived through it all. When he was a kid America was just a motley collection of hardscrabble British colonies. By the time he was an old man the United States was 75 years old and a rapidly emerging world power. The industrial revolution was in full swing, and other great events had occurred during his times: The French Revolution, the War of 1812, the Napoleonic wars, the year without a summer. He lived during the invention of the telegraph and the railroad and the steamboat, such things undreamed of in Conrad’s bucolic youth. And he lived to see the beginning of the age of photography.

via Doug’s Darkworld

This guy lived forever but I’d like to play around with the idea of the most change in the shortest amount of time. Students pick any start date (maybe location as well) they want and rationalize their choice based on the changes that occur during the time period they define. Make it easier and define the time period- most change in 1 year, 10 years, 20 years . . .There’s probably some fun to be had trying to create an equation that would quantify change- similar to the “too many people in the party” equation.

Gilded Lilies

Does analysis add to or detract from the appreciation of beauty? Defend your position.
Via Mental Floss


Via Spin via Collapse Board

Name That Menace

Screen Shot 2013-01-08 at 10.19.29 AM

…is far more destructive, directly or indirectly, to human life and property than any wild beast or venomous serpent. It approporiates nearly everything that man eats, and drinks many of his beverages. It follows him with its baleful influence from the cradle to the grave. It destroys his poultry and molests his domesticated animals. It has been known to attack and mutilate infants, sleepers, the sick, aged and infirm. It is the forerunner of famine, pestilence and death. It carries the germs of disease. It infects man’s ships and habitations with the dreaded plague; sets fire to his dwellings and ships, and ceases its ravages only when the house burns of the ship sinks. As if not satisfied with pursuing him through life, it follows him in death, desecrating and mutilating his mortal remains.

. . . and clearly this guy really, really disliked rats. I can’t recall how I got here (the scanned book is linked below) but there’s a lot of English fun in this passage. I’d like to lead with this and have students guess the culprit. Then I’d like them to truthfully describe fairly common things as if they were the scourge of humanity.

Via Rats and Rat Riddance

Other Things of Interest

Pykrete – sawdust reinforced ice that can stop bullets. 14% sawdust, 86% water by weight- fun variables to play with in terms of determining strength.

1 I keep envisioning huge bright orange stacks of Tide on a street corner. This seems like such an unwieldy form of currency.

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