Daily Content Archive

(as of Thursday, September 25, 2014)
Word of the Day

effete

Definition:(adjective) Weak, ineffectual, or decadent as a result of overrefinement.
Synonyms:weak, feeble, ineffectual
Usage: So beautiful is she that I am always ... mentally limiting her capacities to those of the effete and overcivilized beauties of the outer crust.
Article of the Day

Maxwell's Demon

The second law of thermodynamics—stating that any isolated microcosm moves only toward an increase in entropy—was accepted uneasily by the scientific community, and in 1867, physicist James Clerk Maxwell sought to disprove it. Maxwell's thought experiment utilized a hypothetical creature, which he called a "finite being," that could sort molecules of different velocities or temperatures without expending energy, thus bringing about a general decrease in entropy. Who dubbed the being a "demon"? More...
This Day in History

The Maze Prison Escape (1983)

Maze Prison was a high-security prison in Northern Ireland that housed incarcerated members of the Irish Republican Army during the Troubles. In 1983, the Maze suffered the biggest jailbreak in British history. Using smuggled guns and knives, 38 prisoners overpowered prison guards and hijacked a food truck. One prison officer died during the escape and several others were wounded. Although half of the escapees were soon recaptured, the remaining 19 got away. What happened to them? More...
Today's Birthday

Shel Silverstein (1932)

Silverstein was an American cartoonist, children's author, poet, songwriter, and playwright. Often compared to Dr. Seuss, he wrote and illustrated innovative books of verse for children, including Where the Sidewalk Ends, A Light in the Attic, and The Giving Tree. His quirky verse, which touches on common childhood anxieties and wishes, is credited with helping youngsters develop an appreciation for poetry. What hit song, performed by Johnny Cash, was written by Silverstein? More...
Quotation of the Day
Men often oppose a thing merely because they have had no agency in planning it, or because it may have been planned by those whom they dislike.

Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804)

Idiom of the Day

lemon law

A law requiring an automobile manufacturer or dealer to replace, repair, or refund the cost of an automobile that proves to be defective after purchase. More...
Today's Holiday

Marshall Islands Lutok Kobban Alele (2017)

The inhabitants of the Marshall Islands have long kept a tradition centered on the alele, a soft-sided basket handmade from the native pandanus plant. "Lutok Kobban Alele" is a weeklong festival that honors the basket as a national symbol and celebrates Marshallese culture in general, concluding with an official ceremony on Manit Day, a public holiday observed on the last Friday of September. Activities take place in the capital city of Majuro and include performances by Marshallese singers and dancers, feasts, traditional storytelling, and demonstrations of basket weaving and cooking. More...
In the News

Would You Like Opium with That?

In an effort to hook his customers and keep them coming back for seconds, a Chinese noodle shop owner added a little something extra to his recipe: opium poppy seeds. The scheme was discovered when one of the shop's patrons failed a drug test after being stopped by police. Suspecting the noodles he had eaten earlier were to blame, the man enlisted some of his relatives test out his theory. After eating noodles from the same shop, they too tested positive for drugs. When confronted by police, the shop owner admitted to having laced his noodles with the banned substance. More...
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