Day 270 – Interesting

Some interesting stuff I have spotted on the internet over the last few days:

Great Conjunction Day.
OK, not something I spotted on the internet, but tonight is the night of the Jupiter/Saturn ‘Great’ Conjunction, the first since of its kind since 1623 (and I don’t mean just before half past four this afternoon). Of course, Jupiter and Saturn aren’t actually going to bump into one another (although, 2020…) but they will look like a single bright star.

The Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn

You’ll have to get in quickly after sunset in Cape Town before they disappear below the horizon.


You’ve Probably Snogged A French Corpse From The Late 1880s
This story seems almost too weird to be true, but it’s so good that…

…and the page is actually usually reliable, so…?

You probably haven’t heard of L’Inconnue de la Seine (the Unknown Woman of the Seine) but there’s a good chance you’ve kissed her directly on the mouth, in a manner of speaking.
In the late 1880s, the body of a young woman was discovered drowned in the River Seine in Paris. Nobody knows what happened to her, though at the time it was speculated to be suicide. More importantly, nobody at the time knew who she was either.

Long story short, the face of L’Inconnue de la Seine became the face of Resusci Anne – the CPR model that (if you’ve ever trained in CPR) you’ve given mouth-to-mouth to. Amazing.


Study: Nose Holes Connect To Lungs
We’ve all seen them. The chinstrap mask wearers:

Image for post

But now, a (satirical) new study has conclusively shown that it’s not just the mouth hole that connects to the lungs: the holes in the nose also seem to connect that way as well.


All three face holes suck air in to your lungs and poof air out to the atmosphere.

Who knew?

Incidentally, we saw a “Karen” in a shop today being a “Karen”. And then her and her family were wandering around with their masks under their noses and tutting a lot about the “stupid rules” etc. And it occurred to me that trying to teach my kids that stereotyping people isn’t a good thing to do is actually really difficult when there are so many people around who are the literal embodiment of the stereotype. They exist for a reason. (The stereotypes, I mean; I have no idea why the people exist at all.)


Wait Your Turn
Another older one, but really interesting. In fact, if you look at the title of the subreddit this came from, you’ll see just how interesting it is.

The way these vultures wait their turn.
This was the most interesting thing I’ve witnessed as a wildlife photographer.

And in the great hierarchical pyramid of life, your average black backed jackal is clearly above your average (ironically white backed?) vulture.

Oh, and by the way:

A group of vultures is called a kettle, committee or wake. The term kettle refers to vultures in flight, while committee refers to vultures resting on the ground or in trees. Wake is reserved for a group of vultures that are feeding.

Here’s the (excellent) IG of the guy who shot the video above.


Have a lovely evening.

Day 198 – My image on a boring meme

Thumbing through Reddit yesterday evening, I spotted a post entitled “Boring Meme”.

Here it is, shared for your observation:

I’m no expert, but it appears that the creator of the piece is describing the near immediate bad fortune s/he has upon embarking on a particularly important online computer game, which s/he is unable to pause.

Look, I get it. We’ve all just begun something when something or someone demands our instant attention. It is annoying.

For some reason, they have used four images of birds to represent the potential annoyances they might face in their particular situation.

Top left: possibly a baby Great Grey Owl? I’m not big on owls.
Top right is an apparently walking Cinereous Vulture by Canon Ambassador Vladimir Medvedev.
Bottom right is a local fellow (bird and ‘tog) – A Jackal Buzzard by Clint Ralph taken in the Drakensberg Mountains in KZN, South Africa.

But that bottom left image, the one depicting “noob teammates”?
Well, that’s a Cape Vulture and I know that because I took that photograph.


I took it on 20th October 2013 near Plettenberg Bay – a young male who had lost his family to poisoning or poaching and now resides at Radical Raptors, raising money and awareness so that other young male Cape Vultures don’t have to go through what he has gone through.

I’ve had my images published in a few places: a German football quarterly, a UN Water Ambassador’s presentation about Climate Change, a Cape Town lifestyle magazine, a UK steam engine heritage publication – even in an actual National Geographic book – but this is my first (known) example of one being used in a meme.

Except, this guy got the images from here. I had already been memed!

Who knows – maybe this meme will “take off” (pun intended) and vast sums of money will arrive at my virtual door. Except that obviously, nobody except you and I knows that that bottom corner one is my photo, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t be quietly impressed.

(Discreet) fame at last!