Watching the World
◼ In a survey in the United States, “twenty-nine percent of men reported having 15 or more female sexual partners in a lifetime compared with 9% of women who reported having 15 or more male sexual partners in a lifetime.”—CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION, U.S.A.
◼ In Greece, “62 percent of children up to 16 years of age admit that they have downloaded pornographic material on their mobile phones.”—ELEFTHEROTYPIA, GREECE.
◼ In Britain, 82 percent of the people polled see “religion as a cause of division and tension.”—THE GUARDIAN, BRITAIN.
Headaches for 64 Years
A Chinese woman finally discovered the cause of the “relentless headaches” that had plagued her for more than 60 years, when doctors removed a three-centimeter-long bullet from her head. During the Japanese invasion of a village in Xinyi County in September 1943, the woman, who was then 13, sustained a head injury. No one imagined the cause of her problem. When the headaches became more frequent, an X-ray revealed the bullet, says the Xinhua News Agency. The woman, now 77, is reported to be “in good condition.”
When indigenous Alaskan hunters killed a bowhead whale in 2007, they found lodged in it the point and fragments of an old harpoon. These were identified as “parts of an exploding lance made in New Bedford [Massachusetts, U.S.A.] in the late 1800s,” says The Boston Globe. This type of lance soon became obsolete, which led historians at the New Bedford Whaling Museum to surmise that the whale was harpooned “sometime between 1885 and 1895.” It must thus have been at least 115 years old when it died. This find, says the Globe, provides “more evidence for [the] long-held belief that the bowhead whale is one of the longest living mammals on earth, surviving for up to 150 years.”
Fossilized Rain Forest
Geologists have identified an enormous underground fossilized rain forest made up of a spectacular mix of extinct plants, some of which grew to a height of more than 130 feet [40 m]. The unique forest is located in the passageways of a coal mine in Illinois, U.S.A. Scientists believe that the forest was plunged below the earth’s surface by a catastrophic earthquake. “It’s pretty wild,” says Bill DiMichele, lead researcher of the team that reported the find. “We can reconstruct the forest more or less as if we were walking through it.”
Digging for Vintage Wine
An increasing number of visitors are traveling to Macedonia, a former republic of Yugoslavia, “to dig up vintage wine left behind . . . by allied troops during World War I,” reports the newspaper Kathimerini—English Edition. Equipped with maps, the visitors, mostly from France, excavate abandoned military storage sites. By now, any wine still there is at least 90 years old, and according to the newspaper, “a well-conserved bottle could fetch . . . up to 2,000 euros (2,675 dollars).” Locals who have unearthed wine and cognac say that “they have never tasted anything better.”