Not So Secret Societies

Written by Jason Scott. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

“I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.”- Groucho Marx

 

 

Groucho Marx

 

Did you get rejected from the StoneCutters when you applied for membership? Do you know that you are actually “The Chosen One” but just aren’t sure which secret society you are the “Chosen One” for?

If you don’t fit it with the main stream clubs perhaps you need to find a secret society (or not so secret) that is less about the exclusivity of keeping people out, and more about finding that bizarre form of happiness that only comes when certain birds of a feather flock together.

At Daft Gadgets, we have put together a list of societies that accept membership of people who may have a hard time fitting in to society’s norm. If you haven’t been accepted somewhere else already, you may find what you’re looking for in one of the clubs below. The only caveat is that it may make you an outcast of society in the process.

The Society for Geek Advancement

According to this society, when you believe in something strongly enough to not care if other people think its cool, it means you’re a geek. So technically, Charles Manson and Jesus are both geeks according to the society’s definition. Of course in modern times its cooler to be “Bad” than “good” so if you believe in doing anything good like loving and caring about people, donating time or money to charity, or smiling at people, you are probably a geek.

The society was founded upon the principles that everyone should embrace their inner and outer geek and enjoy doing it. The second founding principle is to be a geek that keeps giving back. So technically being a geek means you should also be homeless, since you give everything away. However, being homeless does not automatically make you a geek, that’s a syllogistic fallacy that any true geek would be aware of.

The society helps people come to terms similar to AA where it is encouraged to announce “My Name is such and such, and I’m a Geek.” They call this project the “I AM A GEEK” project. A project inspired by a Beer Commercial from the year 2000.

As we all know, Beer is the exception where its both cool and geeky, as was proven by google in their quest to create the ultimate beer which they call URKontinent named after the original supercontinent that made up the earth.

The Society of Barefoot Living

No, this is not a male chauvinist society that believes in keeping their women barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. On the contrary. The bare foot society is all about experiencing the the freedom of being in bare feet and the connection it gives you to your surroundings.

Apparently , the same barrier that protects you from stepping on pointy rocks and infected drug needles that we call “shoes” are also a barrier between us and nature. By removing this barrier we open our sensitivity enough to “feel” this connection, until our bodies make its version of a Callus Shoe that numbs down our feet.

According to the barefoot society:

  • it is healthy for your feet to go barefoot.
  • It is not against the law to go barefoot into any kind of establishment including restaurants.
  • It is also not against any health department regulation.
  • It is not against the law to drive barefoot.

Apparently, this means that anyone can join. Its not just a support group for hippies and martial artists.

The Society of Bead Researchers

This is a non profit scientific corporation that was created to foster historical archaeological and cultural research on beads. Its the be all and end all place for those interested in keeping up with any breaking news in bead research and group members get access to a biannual newsletter.

We suggested that they needed a catchy slogan like “Well I’ll Bead Ammed”, “Put an end to Wife Beading”, “Bead still my Beading Heart” , “That’ll Bead the Day”, “To Bead or not to Bead, that is the question”, and others, but have yet to hear back from the society.

Now as exciting as beads are, we actually found this society while looking this society…..

The Society of Beards.

No, this is not a secret society for terrorist members of the Taliban. It is actually a place where men with beards can get together online and smoke pipes and discuss things about life when your bearded. We don’t know a lot about the site because they only accept people with facial beards. However, they have had over 2.4 million page views to their website and have sworn to keep the site going until we are all dead on December 21st 2012 when the self fulfilling Mayan prophecy kills us all.

SCA Society of  Creative Anachronism

The Society of Creative Anachronism is a group that frustrated with their primitive inabilities to travel through time and have moved on to the next best thing. Recreating the past in modern times.

As it stands, they have been able to recreate the arts and skills of pre 17th century Europe which consists of 19 kingdoms of over 30,000 people. Yes, that’s right. They have an army of 30000 people at their disposal, who (luckily for us) are equipped with seriously out of date weapons.

Members of the society dress up in renaissance style, attend royal courts, feasts, dancing, various classes and workshops, and other things you may find during a Lord of the Rings
reenactment. Also, we suspect these may be the same people behind “Ivrea Carnevale:The Battle of The Orange” (see Daft Gadgets Columnist Monte Richards’ article: The 7 Most Insane Festival Battles On Earth

Whether you’re bearded, beaded, barefoot or bully cocked (from 17th century slang), there is a secret society just waiting for you to join. If you don’t like any of the above, you can always start you own. There may even be some money in it if you can come up with something that enough people want to join. You could try:

The Society of celebrity lookalikes – as a niche facebook alternative

The society of attractive people (which sounds exclusive, but you only need one attractive quality to join)

The Society of Odd Unique Talents – Everybody has at least one

The Society of RC Taxidermists – as a way to bring joy with the death of your pet. (see Daft Gadgets Article “Things that haven’t been invented”)

And pretty much anything else.

Be creative, start your not so secret society now and get guaranteed acceptance.

Don’t forget to check out some of our cool geek toys

 

6 Animals With Astounding Electric Powers

Written by Monte Richard. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

Electricity, that magical, mystical force of nature that powers this modern age of marvels. Where does it come from? How does it get into our homes? Why can’t we bathe with a toaster? No one really knows. But thanks to Benjamin Franklin we can all watch TV, nuke nachos and play video games whenever we want through the wonders of electricity.

But we weren’t the first to unravel the secrets of this elusive force. In fact, lots of creatures utilize electricity in the most astounding ways. Mindless beasts have mastered this primal force of nature. Which is kind of weird when you think about it. No animal has ever figured out how to make fire but they can generate and manipulate electromagnetic waves?

It just goes to show that nature is weird.

Electric Eel

Electric Eel Electrophorus electricus

photo: Wikipedia Commons

No one will be surprised to see the Electric Eel on this list. Everyone knows this slimy, sinuous South American fish can shock the ever-loving heck out of you. Its one of those cool animals we all learn about as kids. It’s interesting, but not terribly surprising. It’ll zap you…big deal. So can the torpedo ray, electric catfish and static electricity zapping rug under your feet.

But what really sets the electric eel apart is how much voltage it can generate. The electric eel (which is really not an eel but a member of the catfish family) can smack you with up too 600 volts of natural, home grown electricity. That’s almost five times more than a standard house socket. And they can deliver these debilitating jolts every few seconds continuously…for two hours straight. That’s enough to make you very very dead indeed. Though human fatalities are rare (because really, who in their right mind goes swimming in the Amazon anyway) multiple bursts can cause cardiac arrest and drowning.

electric eel image

“If it’s beauty doesn’t kill you the 600 volts will.”

They can also sap you from up to six feet away and they can grow over eight feet in length. And just to round out the weirdness factor, electric eels breath mostly air because the water they live in is oxygen poor.

Here’s a video of one killing a crocodile:

electric eel vs gator video

Elephant Nosed Fish

First of all that’s not his nose, it’s his chin. Regardless, this is an unattractive fish. The Elephant Nosed Fish is quite possibly one of the ugliest most malformed aquatic creature you will ever set eyes upon. It also has what is probably the most sophisticated sensory equipment in the entire animal kingdom. This fish’s super chin lets it perceive the world around it in ways that could almost make Daredevil believable as a Superhero.  The power of Electrolocation, is apparently like Dardevils echolocation, only with electricity, and possibly magic.

Gnathonemus petersii Elephant Nosed Fish

Sharks and platypus are amazing in that they can detect the minute electric impulses given out by all living animals. But the elephant nosed fish has all that beat. It detects its favorite food buried in the mud and muck in the pitch of night with an electric field it generates through its tail and senses it with its elongated chin. And in case that doesn’t sound impressive enough, it eats ‘dead’ insect larva.

Sharks can feel living things, but the elephant nosed fish hunts creatures that don’t even have a life force to give them away.

Yes, they have a special sense that allows them to see dead things. Their Schnauzenorgan (we didn’t make that up, its a scientific term) are so sensitive they can find dead bugs in the muck in jet black waters. They can also determine distances, differentiate between substances, shapes and sizes. They know if something is alive, dying, or dead, which means they probably have Shrodinger’s Cat all figured out.

The elephant nosed fish can do all of this in absolute darkness with its electric chin wand. It’s a fish with super radar better than all our senses combined.

Bees

 

Bee in the snow

photo: Wikipedia

“No I’m not cute when I’m surrounded by snow…I’m Dying!”

Bee’s have fascinated people since the beginning of time. And why shouldn’t they. They’re awesome. They can communicate by dancing and they produce a sweet delicious super food that doesn’t ever go bad, even after a few thousand years. They can like fly around and sting people and stuff.

No creature on earth pollinates as many plants as bees do. They are absolutely vital to the reproduction of the worlds plants. And unfortunately cell phones are killing them off. But that’s only because these hive minded honey makers have a very special relationship with electricity.

Bees like many other creatures use the earths magnetic field for navigation. Bee’s will high tail it back to the hive before a storm breaks because they can sense the electromagnetic waves of the coming maelstrom.  It’s believed that cell phone traffic interferes with their navigation.

However, even more incredibly than the fact that our communications technology is destroying nature itself is the fact that bees have mastered the power of static cling. Bee’s are fuzzy. When they fly their wings generate a negative charge that their fur picks up. Pollen naturally has a positive charge. So when a bee pulls up to a positive flower pulsing with negative static electricity the pollen practically leaps
off.

Bee in Pollen

“Ugg, and I just got cleaned off too.”

How incredible is that? They’ve mastered the same technology that makes your socks stick to everything in the drier. They’re living electro magnets! Pick up you’re cell phone and call a friend. Let them know that bees are awesome…and that the phone call is probably contributing to their inevitable extinction.

 

Oriental Wasp

Oriental Wasp - Vespa orientalis

photo; Wikipedia Commons

 “Damn! Forgot the suntan lotion.”

Although Not as Dangerous As the The Giant Hornet (See Article: Thieving Bastards of Nature) Wasps are already pretty fearsome. They’re fast, quiet and their sting is pretty painful. But sometimes Mother Nature just can’t leave well enough alone. What could make the wasp even better? Green energy sources.

Researchers discovered that the oriental wasp is more active during mid day than other wasps. These bugs are usually very susceptible to high temperatures. They tend to shut down during the hottest part of the day so they don’t burn up. But not the oriental wasp. These ground nesting pests thrive on sunlight. In fact, they’re the worlds only truly solar powered animal. These sun wasps have a special brown band of cells on their backs that collect light and converts it to electricity

Oriental Wasp Vespa orientalis Voltron Electricity

“Transform into Omegawaspoid!”

 

And they’re unbelievably efficient. Most solar cells have a maximum absorption rate of around 25%. But the brown strip on the oriental wasp traps 99% of all the light that hits it. If it absorbed any more light it would be invisible (and then we’d be screwed). What does it do with all this electricity? It definitely helps them get going in the morning, but beyond that science isn’t really sure. It could help with metabolizing food, it might be for the creation of special enzymes or they might be using it to develop some sort of super bug weapon. Some sort of wasp Voltron or something…powered by solar energy.

 

Super Chicken

Lots of animals can sense the electro magnetic forces of the earth. It was discovered 40 years ago that migratory birds know which way the poles are. Whales use it too. Heck, it was recently discovered courtesy of Google Earth that cows only graze facing either north or south. It seems like most animals are in tune with forces beyond the keen of human senses. And that makes perfect sense.

We’ve got GPS and Mapquest to tell us where to go. But few of these nifty tools are available to the beasts of the air, land and sea. So if you’re a blue whale traveling from one pole to the other then ability to sense directions is invaluable. But chickens take magnetic sensitivity to the next level.

Chicken Crossing the road

Photo Thanks: Wikipedia

 

“Which is very helpful if you’re trying to cross the road.”

Yes, the chicken. That paragon of chubby, flightless laziness who would not survive a single day in the wild is in possession of one of the greatest senses in the world. They can actually ‘see’ the electro magnetic forces of the earth. They have GPS vision. Researchers have shown that chickens can correctly orient themselves under blue light but they loose all sense of direction under longer wavelengths like red.

In other words chickens are from Krypton. Their powers, like Super Man’s, cease to function under a red sun.

Super Chicken

 

Asian Super Ants

Another creature which is too badass to exist without calling into question the concept of a loving, merciful God is Lasius neglectus or the so-called Asian super ants. These lovable little buggers are drawn to electricity in a bad way. Their attraction to sparky is actually stronger than their need for food or drink or NSFW pictures. They attack electric circuits. Science really doesn’t have a clue as to why they do this. Maybe these ants detect electromagnetic waves to hunt their prey and our power lines confuse them. Maybe they’re just jealous of our technology (suck it ants). Or maybe they believe in an antie version of Valhalla and riding the electric snake is an express ticket to paradise.

Ant Head Formicidae

Photo Thanks: Wikipedia

“Give us the password to your router and no one gets hurt.”

 

Whatever the reason swarms of these critters have caused blackouts in Great Britain with their antics. Once one gets zapped an alarm pheromone is sent out that calls swarms of their brethren to attack. Millions of ants will immolate themselves sometimes leading to short circuits. And it gets worse. Asian super ant reproduces quickly and they don’t fight amongst themselves like some other species so they form gargantuan super colonies.

And don’t think only Britain is doomed. Other ants have been known to attack electricity, like the fire ants in this video:

Ant Video

 

If you’re under attack by ants and your phone keeps going dead (and you can’t find any bugs or eels to charge it with), you can check out an emergency mobile phone charger in the Phone Chargers section of our Gadget Shop

 

sources:

http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/fish/electric-eel/
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/content/latest-questions/question/1859/
http://www.frontiersinzoology.com/content/6/1/21
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070821114339.htm
http://articles.cnn.com/2010-06-30/world/bee.decline.mobile.phones_1_bee-populations-cell-phone-radiation-ofcom?_s=PM:WORLD
http://www.asknature.org/strategy/ab1828fc6ae6030c71b72422fe6fa232#section
http://www.dailytech.com/Oriental+Hornet+Capable+of+Converting+Suns+Energy+into+Electric+Power/article20601.htm
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn19709-zoologger-the-solarpowered-electric-hornet.html
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17575035
http://www.livescience.com/1652-chicken-crossed-road-directions.html
http://news.sky.com/home/world-news/article/15351611

 

 

3D Viewing – Inventing the 3D Television

Written by Jason Scott. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True, Gadgets

3D has been around a lot longer than most of us realize. Anyone who was able to to produce 1.21 gigawatts of energy and force it into a flux capacitor knows that wearing 3D glasses was a style donned by more than just your average obnoxious bully sycophant from the year 1955. In fact the 1950s are known as the “Golden Era” of 3-D cinematography.

photo thanks wikipedia

photo thanks wikipedia

The concept of 3D is simple, show 2 different images to each eye in way that makes the put together image look like it has more depth. Unfortunately, quality 3D is a bit more complicated.

For those of you who remember the 3D ground breaking video game “Time Traveler” (see article: Top 10 Video Games of All Time) you are probably too old to be playing video games. That being said, the game had a sort of “Help Me Obi-Wan Kenobi, Your My Only Hope” look to it. Which means if society had really wanted 3D TV, we could probably have it by now if we had only been prepared to pay the $2.00 per game the inventors of time traveler were asking. In fact, 3D has a way of coming in and out of style.

So just how close are we to 3D TV?

There have been a few attempts at different ways of creating the effect, and we can only assume that when we do get the technology there will be an HDDVD vs Blue Ray, Betamax VS VHS type war.

Some possible attempts at 3D Technology include:

Stereoscope 3D.

Stereoscopic 3-D imaging is created by presenting two offset images separately to each eye ball.

How can we use it?

The idea here is to use two tiny screens that fit snug over your eye sockets. It would be the same idea as stereo head phones, except these would be eyephones (pardon the pun).

Back in the 1840s, Sir Chearles Wheatstone invented the stereoscope by taking nearly identical photographs side by side that the viewer would see through a pair of binoculars

This idea was later for cool iconic geek toys like the view master

There was even a view master that played sound!

So why does StrereoScope 3D suck?

Up until now, it has been too expensive to put two lcd screens behind a pair of glasses. As well, it takes away from the group experience, and people don’t like to wear bulky mechanisms on their heads.

So is stereoscope 3-D Dead?

There was a submarine game the Sega brought out call “Sub-Roc” where you would look through a periscope, but like most things by Sega, it didn’t take off.

photo thanks: wikipedia

The Pulfrich Effect 3-D

According to German physicist Carl Pulfrich things move slower in the dark, at least as your eyes are concerned. Since this discovery in 1922 we have had a Rolling Stones concert, Shark documentaries, Power ranger movies, and special episodes of Doctor Who (dimensions in time) all shown in Pulfrich 3-D. The best thing about the technology is that all you have to do is get a tinted monocle and you are are watching 3D!
It works because when you watch things moving side to side while wearing a darkened lens, the object appears to move in depth, towards you or away.

Why does it suck?

For the Pulfrich Effect to work properly, the objects on the screen must be always moving sideways at the right speed. This unfortunately causes some viewers to vomit.

The good news is, you can get the effect any time if you watch things like football games, nature shows, or certain musical scenes from “singing in the rain”

Red-Geen Anaglyph

Edwin Porter had a vision. A vision of half naked belly dancers dancing for him in 3D when he was away from the Gentleman’s club. In fact his idea was demonstrated before the television was even invented. It wouldn’t be until 40 years later that the same technology he demonstrated in 1915 would be used for home 3D TV viewing.

So why does it suck?

Originally it sucked because most people in the 1950s didn’t have color TVs, as well, the red green glasses required gave them headaches. (Similar to those who watched the red green show)

“The Red Green Show – known to cause headaches.”

On top of that, the 3D image was red and green and not true color so nobody really cared when the technology went away.

Why it doesn’t suck

Colorcode (Amber Blue Anaglyph) is a take off on Red Green anaglyph. The difference being that it uses amber and dark blue. Colorcode has been used successfully in the 2009 Superbowl ad Monsters vs Aliens as well as during a special episode of the show Chuck.

In fact, Colorcode is probably the best thing going so far as far a 3D TV is concerned, so it shows how revisiting an epic fail can turn it into a win.

Anyone for the creation of “New Pepsi”

Polarized 3-D Lens.

These lenses let in light vibrating in only one direction. By projecting two different images on the same screen using polarized lenses at different angles, you could route a separate image to each eye allowing for full color images.

Why does it suck?

Because there is no known way to send polarized images through a tv screen, so its pretty much useless.

So what are we to do?  How are we going to get a decent 3D image at home on our television?   Yes were asking you Obi Wan,  Help us, you’re our only hope.

If you’re looking for that retro feel check out our 80s retro iPhone case available in our Gadget Shop

5 of Nature’s Little Guys That Don’t Give a #$%* How Big You Are

Written by Monte Richard. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

By now everyone knows about the honey badger, one of the most fearless, aggressive animals in the world. And of course there’s the wolverine who, aside from being one of Marvel Comics biggest cash cows, is also a crazy weasel like creature that will attack bears and wolves just for laughs. These are fearless little animals that routinely go up against overwhelming odds. But those are the exceptions, right? Rarely in nature do you see the whole David and Goliath setup working out in favor of the underdog. Normally the big animals eat or at least squash the smaller ones. Usually. But sometimes Mother Nature pulls for the little guy. There are teeny animals out there that simply do not know the meaning of fear or common sense. A few of these munchkins will stand up and throw themselves headlong against behemoths…and win.

1. Epomis Beetle

photo thanks: wired.com/wiredscience

photo thanks: wired.com/wiredscience

The bug in the frogs mouth there is winning.”

Frogs are vicious eating machines.  Yes…frogs. They regularly consume scorpions, tarantulas, snakes, birds, you name it.  They’re deadly, agile and hungry as a hippo…only shorter.  If it fits in their mouth they’ll attack and eat it. But if there is one area where frogs really excel at it’s eating bugs.  What with the long tongue, the pouncing and the huge mouths, frogs were tailor made to destroy insects.  But apparently no body told that to the Epomis Beetle.  This small ground beetle will attack and devour frogs, lizards and salamanders at will.  How do we know this? Because scientist set up Thunder Dome like encounters where the beetle won 100% of the time.  That’s right, 100%! This isn’t a bug that ‘sometimes’ pulls out an upset. It’s a super beetle that apparently cannot lose. Here’s a horrifying video of a little beetle brutalizing an amphibian several times it’s size:

epomis beetle

Their strategy is to jump on the amphibian, which outweighs it by a factor of at least 10 and then they start biting it. Do they have some kind of poison? A paralyzing venom to subdue their hippity hoppity foes? No. They just bite him till he dies. That’s like leaping onto a bull and chewing on it till it stops kicking. And not only do the adult beetles eat frogs, but the larva do too. In fact the baby beetles dine almost exclusively on amphibians. And once again, they never lose. Scientists recorded one instance where a frog actually managed to swallow a larva for two hours…he still lost the fight and was consumed by the bug. How do you eat your opponent and still lose?!?

photo: Sciencenewsline.com

“How many lions has your newborn consumed?”

2. Kingbird

Groups of small birds have been known to mob larger predators. They’ll do this to chase them away from their nests. Seals do the same things to great white sharks. It’s a common practice in nature for a group of smaller animals to band together to harass a larger predator.  Kingbirds do something like that too, but with just a tad more “Hell Yeah!” mixed in.  A lone Kingbird will jump on the back of a hawk and peck the bird in the head mercilessly!  This little 2 oz menace will ride on the back of a friggin hawk! That’s like a human leaping onto a great shark and continuously bashing it in the skull with a pipe.

photo thanks: extras.mnginteractive.com

photo thanks: extras.mnginteractive.com

Mommie!!!”

He’s not flitting around harassing it. He’s not posturing or making threats. The Kingbird is riding it bareback and stabbing it in the head. How aggressive and/or mentally unbalanced do you have be to pull this off? The Kingbird will peck the poor hawk relentlessly until it leaves the area. And there’s nothing the alpha predator can do but scream and run. They don’t try to fight back. They don’t hang around plotting their revenge. They get the hell out of Dodge. But the real kicker is that hawks don’t even prey on Kingbirds!  They’re way too small. That’s right, the Kingbird is the bully here. He’s beating up the hawk for no reason other than he can.

3. Cookiecutter Shark

Sharks are scary it’s true, but they don’t indiscriminately attack people.  Typically shark attacks happen because they mistake humans for seals or all that flailing around in the water makes them think you’re wounded.  It really doesn’t want to eat you.  It’s not hunting you.  Honestly you probably don’t even taste good. In fact, Great Whites have been known to spit people out.  Sure, the odds are you’ll still die from the wounds, but that’s not the point. Sharks do not see us as food. They aren’t just mindless eating machines that the movies portray. They won’t just attack you for no good reason…except the cookie cutter shark.  It will straight up eat you.

Photo Thanks: ehay.deviantart.com/art/

Awww…look how cute!”

This two-foot monster will attack anything, people, dolphins, whales, submarines. It literally does not care who or what you are.  If you move you’re food.  And yes, it has actually been known to attack submarines. The navy has had to replace rubber seals and coatings after these vicious little monsters grubbed on them. It’s called a cookie cutter shark because it swims past at high speed ripping a chunk of flesh out with its melon baller like teeth. The only reason you don’t hear about more attacks on people is because they’re nocturnal hunters. So be careful if you go swimming in shark infested waters at night…although lets be honest, you probably deserve to be eaten anyway.

photo thanks: blogs.discovery.com

photo thanks: blogs.discovery.com

Awww…look how cute!”

4-Jack Jumper Ants

No one is surprised that ants will attack creatures several times their own size if their hive is threatened or if they have a team to back them up.  They routinely throw away their lives just because. But then some ants take it to the next level, like the Jack Jumper Ant of Australia and Tasmania.

BANZAII!!!

BANZAII!!!

This is the Jack Jumper of Australia and Tasmania.  He’s throwing himself at a huntsman spider who incidentally eats ants for breakfast.  The ant didn’t stumble upon the spider by accident. The spider didn’t come too close to the nest. This lone ant saw a spider and launched itself over a cliff to attack it. Why?  Because Jack Jumper Ants will attack anything on sight.  And unlike most ants they can see quite well and they can leap 20 cm into the air.  If you get within the range you’re food.  Period.  They are extremely aggressive and they will attack anything.  Also unlike most ants the Jack Jumper is very independent minded so they’re solo hunters.  This little insect can single handedly take down a bee or a wasp. It’s only one ant, but it’s wicked enough to capture and kill a friggin wasp on it’s own.

They’re also amongst the most poisonous creatures on earth.  They kill more humans in their native Tasmania annually than spiders, snakes, wasps, and sharks COMBINED.  Yes, this ant is the most deadly killer in an area renowned for its deadly killers. They sting their prey (or anything that’s pissing them off) repeatedly, releasing a venom that ignites the allergic reaction in most humans, leading to death if medical attention is not sought right away.  And don’t think thick clothing will protect you, they can sting right through it.

photo thanks: www.alexanderwild.com

photo thanks: www.alexanderwild.com

5 – Common Krait

“He always hogs the covers.”

Most snakes are kind of skittish.  They don’t have legs. They aren’t very tall. They know better than to hang out around larger creatures that can crush them.  The math is pretty easy on this one. If you’re a small animal that crawls around on your belly then stay away from things that can smash you. Even very poisonous snakes are reluctant to bite people because they themselves might be hurt in the process. That’s why rattlesnakes make all that racket. They’re saying ‘hey, I’m over here don’t stomp on me because I will totally kill you, ok.’ But the common Krait of India is either the bravest or stupidest snake in the world. It will actually climb in bed with people.

And this isn’t a case where the snake accidentally blunders into an empty bed because he thinks it’s a good place to hide. They will slither beneath the sheets while people are there. No one is exactly sure why they do this.  Maybe they’re cold.  Maybe they just like to snuggle.  Maybe it’s the fabric softener you use. Whatever the reason it’s a recipe for disaster when you consider that it’s more poisonous than a cobra and it’s bite is almost painless.  It’s not uncommon for people to die in their sleep. Sleep tight!

For a good nights sleep try our Memory Foam Sleep Mask with Stereo Input

Sources:
http://kalachkrait.webs.com/
http://animal.discovery.com/videos/wild-recon-common-krait-venom.html

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/270254/jack_jumper_ants_two_times_worsethan_pg2.html?cat=5
http://news.discovery.com/animals/cookiecutter-shark-scooped-flesh-out-of-human-swimmer-110705.html
http://www.livescience.com/14882-human-cookiecutter-shark-bite.html
http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/shark-attack-documented-cookiecutter-shark-attack-human-hawaii/story?id=14001710
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1216709/Pictured-The-plucky-little-kingbird-took-piggyback-predatory-hawk-lived-tell-tale.html
http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_13452818
http://kathleen-airdrie.suite101.com/eastern-kingbird-a-flycatcher-a184444
http://www.livescience.com/14254-beetles-eating-amphibians-predator-prey.html
http://news.discovery.com/animals/frog-legs-on-beetles-menu-110524.html
http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/09/epomis-beetle-amphibians/

Cool or Crazy? – The Fine Line of Politics

Written by Jason Scott. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

Every once in a while, a politician, leader, or dictator will surprise us. We expect them to lie to us, raise taxes, and waste lots of money, but on rare occasions they do something that no one expects. Sometimes we hear touching chicken soup type stories of how the teddy bear got its name after Teddy Roosevelt showed compassion by refusing to shoot a half dead beaten black bear in the face with his shot gun (we added the face part, but we assume the other hunters were asking him for a head shot).

Other times we hear stories of people like Turkmenbashi who ordered the construction of an Ice Zoo in the middle of the Dessert, or stories of Boris Yeltsin outside the white house drunk in his underwear trying to get a cab to take him out for pizza. Its the stories like these that leave us scratching our heads asking

“Is this leader kinda cool, or is he just Nuckin’ Futs?”


1. Francois Duvalier AKA Papa Doc.

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

Claiming to be Baron Samedi, the Voodoo spirit of death, Papa Doc makes the Daft Gadgets list of Crazy or Cool with ease. By no means are we saying that the Voodoo religion holds a monopoly on “Crazy,” in fact we are currently looking to hire an artist to make custom voodoo dolls of our customer’s ex lovers based upon the photographs then send in. We think that voodoo could be the next big thing for our Gadget Shop.
That aside, were pretty sure that Papa Doc was “Nuckin Futs”

His departure from the land of sanity probably occurred during a 9 hour coma he experienced that left him with massive brain damage. Upon awakening, he demanded his successor (Clement Barbot) be arrested.

So, What is so odd about that?

He told his people that they would have trouble finding him because he had transformed himself into a large black dog.

So what was the most logical thing to do?

Well round up all the black dogs and put them to death of course.

After ordering the death of all the black dogs in Haiti, Clement Barbot was found (obviously because there were no black dogs left for his spirit to hide in) It was at this point that Papa Doc had Clement’s head cut off and preserved for Voodoo uses at a later time.

On his death bed, Papa Doc let out one last final secret. He confessed that he was responsible for JFK’s Assassination…..by way of a Voodoo Curse. He also sent one of his people to the U.S.A to visit Kennedy’s grave and “steal the air” around it so that Papa Doc could control JFK’s soul in the afterlife with a spell.

Now as “Cool” as all this sounds, our vote for Papa Doc is on the “Crazy” side.

Jaime Nebot

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

Jaime Nebot serves as the Mayor of Ecuador’s Largest city, Guayaquil. He has made headlines in Ecuador with various antics. On August 31, 1990. Nebot was heard screaming hysterically during a public broadcast of a parliamentary session. Although screaming in parliament is a very common thing these days, it was Nebots choice of words that earned him fame.

His words were: “Come here so I can pee on you,” and then “I can’t just hit you. I have to pee on you.” The police came in and restrained Nebot who told them he was angry at the back room dealings of the socialist party.

Now as funny as this televised was for us to watch without understanding a word (okay, we could make out a few of the swears) this incident is not the reason he is on our list.

The real reason Nebot is on our Cool or Crazy list is this:

In October of 2003 during a press conference, Nebot decided that the criticism from the press was not only unwarranted, but that it got in the way of his duties as the Mayor, essentially costing the tax payers too much money. Nebot then hired an assistant specifically for the task of addressing the critics from the press.

What’s so crazy cool about that you ask? ………..

The person he hired was a parrot.

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

“I get paid in Crackers”

“Here is the parrot,” he explained, “that will be in charge to answer all the undesirable comments that I have no time to answer! Some people only approach me with nonsense talk, so the parrot will answer back in the same way because I need to use my time to work.”

We don’t know about you, but were putting Nebot in the “Cool” Category.

Francisco Macias Nguema

Francisco Macias Nguema

Some people believe that insanity is hereditary. Luckily for Macias Nguema, he didn’t believe in such ridiculous superstitions. Born the son of a witch doctor who killed his younger brother, Francisco became the first President of Equatorial Guinea.

The center of an extreme cult of personality. He was known for doing wonderful things like having entire families and villages executed, punishing critics to 30 year jail terms, making intellectuals illegal and lots of other fun stuff……. like his special Christmas in 1975. We guess he was in the festive mood when he march 150 of his opponents in to a football stadium in Malabo where he lined them all up and shot them dead to Mary Hopkin’s song “Those were the days”

Now, on the surface, it may appear that he was just “Evil” but we feel that two things allow him on to our list of Crazy or Cool.

The first, he banned lubrication in powerplants claiming that his magic powers would keep the place running (which they did until the power plant broke down shrouding the entire capital in darkness). The second, he would indulge in Bhang (buds from a female cannabis plant) and the Hallucinogenic plant known as Iboga, and then have an imaginary tea party with imaginary enemies who he would execute.

As funny as playing the Red Queen in wonderland sounds, we’re putting him in the crazy category

Other politicians and leaders who almost made the Cool or Crazy list include:

Hajnal Ban

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

Who was tired of being short at around 5 foot 1 and had her legs lengthened to make her 5 foot 4 (or perhaps 5 foot 6 in high heels) which we decided is probably more cool than crazy since she wasn’t that tall.

and of course, it was hard to leave out Gaddafi

who wasn’t just known for his Gaddawful clothing styles, but also for doing things like firing his body guards and replacing them all with female virgins. Which we think is kind of cool, even for a crazy person.

Cyborg – Creating a Modern Day Human Robot

Written by Jason Scott. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True, Gadgets

“The point of technology is to extend what we can do with our bodies, our senses, and most of all our minds”

-Scientific American

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

Its only a matter of time before the human search for the holy grail of immortality moves to the religion of science, and when it does, the new wars will be man vs machine, cloning vs robotics, stem cells vs artificial intelligence, and discrimination laws of mechanical and electromechanical robots.

If you think about it, the human body is an inferior biological animal housing unit that contains a superior functioning brain. Dogs and Cats hear and smell better than we do, hawks have better eyesight, and pretty much every animal or insect is faster or stronger than us pound for pound. To put it bluntly….We suck!

However, as we mentioned, the one advantage we do have is our brains. Our brains are both a dangerous servant and a fearful master, and most of us either accept them (because they are stuck in same body) or fight them by killing them with weapons like beer.

One of the biggest questions in this chicken egg universe is “will artificial intelligence be created before we transplant a brain into a computer or will that act create the first being of artificial intelligence?

Who knows really, but its safe to say that if we aren’t replacing body parts with cloning we will be replacing them with robotics since everyone knows the cost of using parts from drifters and hobos is on the rise.

We already have robotic automation in areas like water management, military aviation, and vacuuming, and the area cyborg technology is much more advanced than most people realize. In fact, we have already have the technology to create a Borg like being, It just hasn’t happened yet because nobody wants to scare the crap out of the general populace.

Peg legs, wooden arms, hooks, glass eyes, false teeth, hearing horns, eyeglasses, wheel chairs, canes, and other synthetic replacements are being replaced with new robotic technologies every day. Exoskeletons can be used to help disabled people move around or increase the strength of human soldiers so that they can carry bigger guns and kill people easier, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. You can also expect robotics to create intelligent implants in the brain, which will “improve” our rational thought, and release nanorobots into our blood to clean our arteries.

Imagine how great life will be when we are programed to like it! (insert sarcasm emoticon here)

Here are just a few of the advancements in cyborg technology over the last few years.

Robotic USB Finger

photo thanks gizmodo

photo thanks gizmodo

For the Do it Yourselfer, you may want to take a page out of Jerry Jalava’s book. He lost his finger when some stupid biological Deer Like organism tried to commit suicide by running into his motorcycle. Years ago a loss of an index finger meant more than just a nose full of boogers and “issig letters wile tpig”, it also came with a feeling of permanent loss.

However in getting with the 21st century, Jerry probably remembered the words of his father who used to say “I have more knowledge in the tip of my finger than you do in your entire body” and with that, he decided to replace his missing finger with the usb flash drive seen below.

Unlike a primitive biological finger, Jerry’s usb finger isn’t integrated like some un-upgradeable computer from Dell. His usb finger can be removed and replaced with a new model or alternative tool should the need arise. However, the USB finger is more of an adaptation than a replacement since the function of the finger has changed from pointing blame to storing a collection of porn.

Bones

photo thanks national geographic

photo thanks national geographic

For a Borg like adaptation of a finger tip you need look no further than the U.S. Military who in 2008 claimed to have unlocked the secret to regrowing limbs with the use of Nano Scaffolding. (Sorry Jeremy, you were obsolete before you began)

How does it work?

Basically, a tiny scaffold of polymer fibers (100 times finer than a human hair) is attached to a patient in place of a missing organ or appendage. The scaffold then acts as a guide for human cells to rebuild themselves by weaving themselves through the tiny holes of the scaffold replacing the bone and tissue.

They have apparently already used the technology to replace a missing finger tip lost during a model airplane accident. (which seriously discredits Dr. Conners and his Gamma Radiation theories)

Dr Conners.  Photo wikipedia

Dr Conners. Photo wikipedia

Look Like we wont be seeing Dr Lizard any time soon.

Eyeballs

photo thanks wikipedia

photo thanks wikipedia

Rob Spence decided to fit his prosthetic eye with a video camera that includes a miniature lens and wireless transmitter. He is currently using it to create a documentary about the intersect of humanity and surveillance technology. Like the USB finger, the eyeborg is not a replacement, but more of an adaptation, since it has an entirely new function.

There is however, a prosthetic device that does allow a certain type of blindness to experience sight.

No it is not a visor.

photo thanks wikipedia

photo thanks wikipedia

“Sorry Mr LaForge”

Achromatopsia is a form a color blindness where you can only see black and white, However thanks to a prosthetic device known as “Eye Borg” (yes this is called eyeborg as well) Color Blind people can now have the frequency of colors converted to sound.

Neil Harbisson, (an officially recognized cyborg) is a color blind painter who can now perceive three hundred and sixty color hues through varying frequencies and adjust them with volume to help measure color saturation. As a painter, this device has not only made his life richer and deeper, but it has also allowed him to express his artistic view to world in way that has never been previously possible.

Who would have thought that robots would bring advancements in the world of art?

Bionic Knee and Foot

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

For those of you who are familiar with the Movie “Black Hawk Down” you may also know that the film was loosely based upon real events.

Brad Halling, a now retired ex special forces operative, lost his leg in Somolia when a rocket propelled grenade collided with his Black Hawk Helicopter. Since then he has had a few different prosthetic limbs, but none of them have been a unique as his Binonic Knee.

How does it work? The Bionic Knee receives signals to an embedded microprocessor from a transmitter strapped to the functional leg. It then learns how the person walks and transmits this information to a powerful electric motor that mimics the persons walking muscles.

The Bionic Foot works in a similar way with the robotic ankle joint recalibrating its position at 1000 times per second, but it costs 1/5th the price at $20,000 (vs $100,000)

Both area available on the market.

Non Sentient Robot Brain – Or is it?

French Researchers have been working on a concept that allows a robot to control human limbs. Sure, you could replace a defective arm with a robotic one, or, you could just attach a bunch of electrodes to your human body and let a robot brain control you like a puppet master.

The goal of the French scientists is to help people afflicted with paralysis and other disabilities regain some of their motor skills. So its supposed to be more of a robotic physio therapist rather than a robotic Geppetto

Here is an example of how a robot and human can have peaceful coexistence within the same body.

For the latest Robot and Geek toys, check out the 3 in 1 all terrain robot from Daft Gadgets.

3 in 1 all terrain robot

3 in 1 all terrain robot

Hard to Kill – The Top 5 Most Unkillable People in History

Written by Jason Scott. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

Many of you may have heard the story of how a saloon owner named John Schrank was instructed by Ghosts (specifically the ghost of William Mckinley) to assassinate Teddy Roosevelt. He attempted to do this by shooting Roosevelt in the chest before his famous speech in 1912. Those of you who know the story, know that Teddy decided to deliver the 90 minute speech anyway, even though there was a bullet lodged in his chest.

This gives him a very honorable mention in the Daft Gadgets list of Nearly “unkillable” people. However some people took more than one measly bullet (Leon Trotsky got an Ice Axe plunged into the back or his skull before getting pissed off and spitting in his would be assassin’s face!).  And others, who exited in a blood bath left there bodies, not because they were dead.  But because, they didn’t want to hang around in their now mutilated bodies.

What can we say, we at Daft Gadgets really favor the stories of those who are bad ass enough to face certain death just to see how long they stand up against impossible odds.

Kind of like the final moments of this guy:

Which brings us to our first example…………………

1. Pablo Escobar

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

Head of the Medellin Drug Cartel back in the days of Miami Vice, Escobar quickly became public enemy number 1 in the United States, so much in fact that a special task force made up from U.S. Delta Force operatives, SEAL Team 6 and Centra Spike was commissioned to take him out with the help of the Colombian police task force known as “Search Bloc”.

Upon tracking him down, Escobar (who we can only assume had seen the 1983 movie “Scarface”), stayed true to his words: “I prefer to be in the grave in Colombia than in a jail cell in the United States” and began his final stand in Tony Montana like fashion.

Jumping from rooftop to rooftop, Escobar took a hailstorm of bullet wounds to his legs and body, only to finally be taken out by a kill shot through his ear. Like the unsinkable Bismark under British Bombardment, it was unclear whether the fatal wound on the unkillable drug lord was self inflicted, or if it came from one of the members of the Search Bloc.

It took over 50 years to find the scientific evidence that the Germans sank their own unsinkable ship, and without cryogenic freezing or inception like technology, it is unlikely that we will every know for sure regarding Escobar.

2. Fidel Castro:

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

“Fight Against Impossible Odds and Win” – Poster Translation

The movie titled 638 ways to Kill Castro got its name for a reason. According to Fabian Escanlante (Castro’s official life protector), 638 is the number of times the CIA and other Castro haters have attempted to assassinate Castro. The documentary goes into detail about plots using exploding cigars, poison pills, La Femme de Nikita type hit women, fungal infected scuba suits, Mafia style shootings, a poison syringe in a fountain pen, and even a radio station rigged with noxious gas!

Yes Fidel Castro is probably the most notorious assassination escape artist in history, known from the world of politics to pop culture. Of course some assassination plans are better than others.

COTTON: Fine, you sissy girls, I’ll row to Cuba myself! Hell, I’ll swim to Cuba with this wrench between my teeth! Then I’ll pose as a beautiful female plumber, and when the toilet clogs at the Presidential palace, I’ll… I’ll… oh. I just wanted to kill Castro!
HANK: I know, Dad. I know.

– King of the Hill.

3. Rasputin.

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

He Doesn’t look so tough in the picture?

As the German disco group Boney M sang, Rasputin was a hard person to kill. With enemies all around from his drinking and lusting for power, Rasputin had more than one attempt on his life, on more than one occasion.

His Doctrine was to attain divine grace through sin, which basically means he started a religion that called for you to get drunk, have lots of sex, and take bribes. Generally the church would be able to do away with such a compelling competitive religion, but unfortunately for them, Rasputin was protected by the Russian Queen, who believed he mad mystic healing powers to treat her son.

This protection however, only went so far.

photo thanks wikipedia

photo thanks wikipedia

At a certain point, it was decided that Rasputin needed to go.

On June 29th, 1914. After receiving a telegram (no not a singing telegram like in the movie clue) A former prostitute turned religious disciple (named Khionia Guseva) attempted to redeem herself with god by slicing open Rasputin’s abdomen, leaving his exposed entrails hanging out. Upon doing so she was heard to scream “I have killed the antichrist!”

Of course minor wounds like having your entrails pulled out was not enough to stop someone like Rasputin.

He would recover from this injury only to later be poisoned at a at Moika Palace with cyanide laced wine and cakes. After devouring them all and having the audacity to still live, Prince Yusupov shot him in the back with a revolver and left him for dead. Yusupov later returned for his coat only to see Rasputin spring back to life and begin strangling him. Luckily other murderers were around and were able to shoot him dead again with 3 gun shot wounds.

As they eerily stepped towards his fallen body, they noticed that he was still trying to get back up. It was at this point that they began clubbing him to death. Not taking any chances they wrapped and bound his body in a carpet and threw him in the freezing Neva River where he managed to break free from his bonds, but drowned before he got out.

Is it any wonder they called him the Mad Monk? Going through an ordeal like that would send the Dali Lama to Anger Management

Photo Wikipedia

Photo Wikipedia

“I’m only happy because I still have my entrails inside me”

 

4. Jim Bowie

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

Some of you may be familiar with the Bowie Knife. Its called that because Jim Bowie became one badass son of a bitch every time he had one in his hand. The most famous time occurring during a friendly “Duel” that would later become known as “The Sandbar Fight”

On September 19, 1827 Bowie attended a duel on a sandbar outside Natchez Mississippi. When neither duelist managed to hit one another with their gun shots, spectators Cuny and Crain (who were also at odds with each other) decided that it would be a good time to settle their score as well. After all, it would be a shame to get all dress up for a duel and not see any blood.

With that Crain fired a shot at Cuny, but accidentally hit Bowie in the hip, sending him to the ground. Bowie then arose to his feet, drew his knife, and charged at Crain. Unfortunately, Crain managed to smash his gun over Bowies face as it broke into pieces and sent Bowie to the Ground. It was then that Wright (one of Crain’s supporters) shot at Bowie while he was on the ground, and then plunged his sword into Bowie’s chest.

Of course this just pissed Bowie off…

As Wright was fumbling with ways to pull his sword from Bowie’s sternum, Bowie grabbed hold of him and pulled him down into his Bowie knife (as it would become later known). Wright died instantly, but Bowie still had the problem of an annoying sword in his chest to deal with, which unfortunately made him an easier target and as such was shot and stabbed again by another member of Crain’s group.

Clambering to his feet, two brothers (Alfred and Carey Blanchard) fired pistols at him, hitting him once in the arm. Bowie was then able to draw the sword out of his chest and cut off part of Alfred’s forearm while dodging another bullet from Carey.

The Brothers then fled like the cowards they were

5. Michael Malloy, a Fire Fighter and Drunkard.

photo wiki

photo wiki

Photo not the real Malloy

Michael Malloy aka “Mike the Durable” and “Iron Mike”, was a homeless drunken Irishman who lived in New York City. As a former fireman who was down on his luck, Malloy became acquainted with five men who pretended to be his friends.

Just when things seemed to be at their worst, Malloy received the friendship of these five men and an unlimited drinking tab at their pub, which probably seemed like a godsend at the time. Little did he know, the five men (who would later become known as “The Murder Trust”) had secretly taken out insurance policies on his life. The idea was that because Malloy was so addicted to alcohol, he would accidentally kill himself with alcohol poisoning. (Little did they know that Malloy most likely had a liver sized for a blue whale.)

With the plan backfiring and Malloy not cooperating with the plan by not dying, action had to be taken. The five then came up with the idea to put anitfreeze in the liquor, but Malloy just kept coming back for more. When anitfreeze didn’t work they used turpentine, followed by horse liniment. When Malloy still came back for more, they used Rat poison in desperation.

image wikipedia

image wikipedia

Of course, by this time, Malloy had most likely built up a tolerance to poison and ingested the Rat poison with little problems other than a “bad hangover” which just required more booze to cure.

Realizing that if they didn’t collect on the insurance policy soon that Malloy was going to drink them out of their profits, The Murder Trust tried using raw oysters soaked in methanol and a sandwich of spoiled sardines mixed with poison and carpet tacks. All of which Malloy swallowed into his iron stomach.

Realizing that Malloy could probably ingest pretty much anything and still live, it was decided that the best way to kill him was to freeze him to death. This time, they waited until Malloy passed out from too much booze, carried him into a park in -26 degree weather, dumped him in snow and poured five gallons of water on his bare chest.

Of course, he showed up the next day for his free drinks. Pissed off, they drove over him with a taxi moving 45 mph, which finally at least sent him to the hospital . After being gone for 3 weeks, The Murder Trust assumed they had finally killed him. When he showed up for drinks again, they threw caution to the wind and put a hose in his mouth that was connected to a gas jet. He was finally pronounced dead of lobar pneumonia.

In contrast, 4 or the 5 men involved died in the electric chair known as “Old Sparky”. And it only took one try.

photo thank wikipedia of Old Sparky from Sing Sing.

photo thank wikipedia of Old Sparky from Sing Sing.

Our 3 Favorite Prison Break Stories of All Time

Written by Jason Scott. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

Anyone who knows the story of the count of Monte Cristo, Papillon, or the Shawshank Redemption, knows that the story of someone escaping to freedom can help lift us out of depression and provide us the strength to face another 5 days of imprisonment in an office cubical. There are many thrilling stories of escape that range from royalty dressing up as the opposite sex (Like with Mary Queen of Scots and King Charles II), to war stories escapes like the Allied Prisoners of War at Stalag Luft III and Colditz or the East Berliners from 1961-1989 (which included a getaway in a hot air balloon) to of course “Prison Breaks”

Below are our 3 of our favorite well known stories of Prison Break Escapes that we feel qualify the “escapees” as “Artists”

The First Being……

1. Kalashnikov Pat – Pascal Payet

Photo Thanks wikipedia

Photo Thanks wikipedia

Pat is one of the most notorious criminals in France

After being convicted of robing an armored truck and shooting  a guard 14 times, Pascal Payet was sentenced to a lengthy prison term.  At least, so the authorities thought.

On October 12 2001 a buddy flew into the compound with a rope ladder and pat escaped with a friend. (why didn’t I think of that?)

The guards got smart and put a net over top of the compound. But in may 2003 he decided to come back with another helicopter and cut a hole in the steel net to bust some friends out (3) He flew the helicopter to a nearby sports stadium and escaped in a car

He was recaptured in 2005.

He then again in June 2007. This time armed men hijack a helicopter, overpowered guards and went straight to his cell to

The chopper landed at a nearby helicopter and everyone escaped. Pat was found 2 months later and thrown back in prison. Of course the authorities aren’t saying which one.

2. Casanova

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

Photo Thanks Wikipedia

Famous for his philandering, Giacomo Casanova pissed off one too many husbands. In fact his powers of seduction were so impressive he was imprisoned for allegedly practicing witchcraft in 1755 when he was sent to Leads prison in Venice, notorious for its inescapability.

However Casanova found a piece of iron in the prison yard and kept it for tunnel digging purposes. He dug a tunnel in the floor beneath his cell, but got moved before its completion. Thats when he convinced “Balbi” (the prisoner in the end cell next to his) to dig two tunnels. One connecting the two cells, and the other leading to the outside the prison.

Both Prisoners escaped with the iron bar, which they used one last time to break through a set of gates on their way to freedom.

3. Frank Morris and the Anglin Brothers

Photo wikipedia

Photo wikipedia

For those who saw the movie “The Rock” (which had nothing to do with the wrestler and everything to do with Sean Connery being a super cool ex MI6 agent) you may remember how hard it was to break in to the Prison Island of Alcatraz. Apparently, Alcatraz was even harder to break out of….unless you are a diabolical genius like Frank Morris.

In its time, Alcatraz was the most secure prison in the United States. It was fully equipped with hidden microphones, gun towers, and trigger happy guards who would like nothing better to do than to snipe some poor bastard who got too close to the electric fence. On top of that, even if a prisoner did manage to escape, they would have to find a way to cross the dangerous waters that completely surrounded the island.

In 1962, Frank Morris and the Anglin brothers, Clarence and John, decided that Alcatraz was a boring un-fun place to be and began planning their escape. Little by little with a set of nail clippers, some spoons and a drill made from a fan, they began to chip away at the concrete around a ventilation shaft. Each night, as the hole got bigger, they would fill it in with a jail made paper mache of newspapers and paste. Once the hole was big enough, they used their paper mache skills to create fake heads with barbershop hair to act as decoys for their escape.

photo wikipedia

photo wikipedia

With the help of 50 prison raincoats, they constructed an inflatable raft (that they blew up with an accordion) and took to the water.

They were never heard from again.

If you would like to conduct your own prison or wartime escape from home, all you need is an imagination, some army men, and one of the cool RC helicopters from DaftGadgets.com

5 Small Rodent-Like Creatures With Incredible Super Powers

Written by Monte Richard. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

If you were going to be a super hero and you could chose the powers of any one animal what would you pick? Pumas can jump 15 feet straight up in the air. Electric eels can generate more volts than the socket in your house. Golden eagles have a crushing grip of almost 500 pounds per square inch. There are lots and lots of incredible animals with super powers. Tigers, bears, elephants, chihuahuas…the list goes on and on. But what about rodents and their kin? The small vermin of the world who lurk in the shadows of the larger, more illustrious members of the league of super animals. Surely you wouldn’t discount the awesome might of the naked mole rat or the cunning of the least weasel. What villain wouldn’t run from the astounding abilities of the shrew? You might be surprised to learn that the bucktoothed, pocket-sized pests of the world are in possession of some awesome abilities. Beware evildoers, lest you incur the wrath of…the rodent!

1 – Naked Mole Rat

Photo Thanks to Naked-Mole-Rat.org

“Evil has a new enemy…and he’s pink.”

Behold the naked mole rat of Africa in all its pink, wrinkly glory. What kind of mad skills could this freakish fleshy bratwurst with teeth possibly have you ask? Well, besides it’s incredible ability to be naked and repulsive and disgusting, it was recently discovered that Naked Mole Rats don’t feel pain like the rest of us. Their skin lacks several key neurotransmitters so neither acid nor chili peppers affects them. Apparently they aren’t bothered by itches either, which is just a bonus. Because they live underground there is a lot of excess carbon dioxide that builds up in their burrows making their environment inherently more acidic. They evolved a to turn off the pain that every other animal on the face of the earth feels. So if a villain comes at you with the whole ‘vat of acid’ routine you’re covered.

Photo thanks Livescience.com.

Photo thanks Livescience.com.

“Pffft…acid? Really? You’ll have to do better than that fiend.”

Naked mole rats also have an incredible set of chompers. They can move their top two teeth apart or together like chopsticks. And because they’re burrowing animals twenty five percent of their muscles are found in their jaw alone. That’s like taking all the power of one of your legs and putting it in your face. These critters have been known to chew threw cement walls! And to round out their skills they can run just as fast backwards as they can forwards and it seems they’re completely immune to cancer.

Photo Thanks to animals.Nationalgeographic.com

Photo Thanks to animals.Nationalgeographic.com

“Yes, it is possibly the most hideous mammal on the face of the planet, but that’s a small price to pay for the unearthly gifts of the naked mole rat…but no you’ll never get a date.”

Mole Rat Video:

mole rat video

2 – Hero Shrew

Photo Thanks Wikipedia.org

Photo Thanks Wikipedia.org

“It’s also known as the ‘armored shrew’ but ‘hero shrew’ just has more flair.”

If you’re going to fight against the forces of tyranny, oppression and general unnicedness then you’ll need some invulnerability. Once again, you might turn too more noted animals when looking for toughness. Sure, bears are pretty rugged. Elephants look like they could take quite a beating. Even innocuous critters like turtles or armadillos would appear on the surface to be better choices then rodents. It’s pretty much a general rule that if you step on a mouse or a rat it’s going to die. Unless that fuzzy little toe biter is the hero shrew of central Africa.

For some inexplicable reason these pint sized fur balls have super reinforced skeletons. They have a unique interlocking backbone, which is about 4 times larger than other animals, its size. Science isn’t really sure why but it probably has something to do with gamma radiation and super science gone awry. The end result is that a 160 pound man can stand on a 4 ounce hero shrew without making gooey little rat pancakes. In fact, there’s a tribe in Africa that does exactly this. They believe that this shrew has powers, which of course it does. Go lay beneath Godzilla’s heel and see how well you fair. The toughest animals in the world couldn’t stand up to the crushing forces that the hero shrew just shrugs off. Mouse traps? He laughs at mousetraps.

Image thanks thelifyouandineverknew.blogspot.com

Image thanks thelifyouandineverknew.blogspot.com

3 – Least Weasel

photo thanks wikipedia.org

“I hunger…for justice!”

The greatest power of all is often times just the will to fight on when things look bleakest. The courage to laugh in the face of fear and throw down no matter how over matched you might be. Sometimes outright scrappiness and an unyielding determination is all you need to carry the day. Does Batman have powers? Does Captain America need laser eyes? These mere mortals survive and overcome enemies much more powerful than themselves with skill alone. Well the least weasel is what you’d get if Batman and Captain America had a baby together that was somehow turned into an adorable ferret. These are some of the smallest mammalian carnivores on earth and yet they’re able to take down prey 5 to 10 times their size.

photo thanks wikipedia.org

photo thanks wikipedia.org

“Holy hell!”

They’ve been known to subdue full-grown rabbits. That’s like a man stepping into the ring with a two thousand pound moose bare handed. These are fearless little beasts who apparently don’t have the good sense to know that attacking animals ten times your size is a bad idea. No disk shield painted up in patriotic colors. No utility belt full of batarangs. Just teeth, skill and an irrepressible urge to beat other animals senseless no matter how big and bad they are.

4 – Northern Short-Tailed Shrew

Nothern Short tailed shrew

Photo thanks wildaboutnatureblog.com

“The furry shark of the insect world.”

All shrews are skilled hunters with voracious appetites. However, the most fearsome is the northern short-tailed shrew. First of all they have a supercharged metabolism. The human heart thumps out around 60 beats per minute at rest and maybe twice that when you’re excited or scared. The shrew’s heart fires at an incredible 1200 beats per minute, about double that of the average rodent. So basically take all the speed and hyperactivity of a common mouse and multiply it by 2. The shrew has ungodly speed and stamina but at a high cost. They’ve got to eat three times their weight in food daily or they will starve to death. They can die within hours.

Photo Thanks curiousnature.info

Photo Thanks curiousnature.info

“Strength…fading…must…find…Starbucks…need…latte”

Super speed is just the beginning though. This shrew is also one of a select group of mammals to have mastered echolocation, kind of like dolphins and bats. Since it hunts mostly underground it uses its sonic senses to navigate. But the shrew is doubly unique because it is also one of the few mammals known to be venomous. Its toxicity has been compared to friggin Gila monsters and cobras. It uses this poison to paralyze prey and bring it back to its nest. Bugs and lizards can stay alive for days in the pantry of the shrew. It’s got super speed, paralyzing poison, and echo location all in one snuggly little package. Mother Nature was not pulling any punches when she designed this thing. They probably spit fire too, so don’t get to close.

5 – Rat

Photo Thanks nationalgeographicstock.com

Photo Thanks nationalgeographicstock.com

“I am the darkness made flesh! Vengeance taken shape and substance!”

Ahhh the rat. Everyone knows that rats are one of the world’s premier survivors. They’re everywhere; in every city and town…you might have a rat or two in your house right now (maybe you’re married to one). But there are a few very good reasons why whiskers does so well. Besides being able to climb virtually anything and being extremely smart, rats have very flexible skeletons and can squeeze through a hole the size of a quarter. And they’re whiskers are nearly as sensitive as your hands. They can feel a speck on the wall in absolute darkness. With their skill and smarts they’re experts at breaking into just about anything.

But perhaps the rats greatest ability is the fact that they’re incredibly hard to kill…..

Rats can tread water for three days, fall 50 feet without injury and in laboratories rats have survived nearly twenty days straight without sleep. That means you can flush them down the toilet, throw them off a balcony or play really loud death-metal for a month and they won’t be fazed in the slightest. The rat’s greatest super power is the ability to cheat death. And if you think that’s a little far fetched then consider this: rats can survive electrocution. They have the ability to restart their own heart after chewing on electric wires. There are companies that build electric rat traps. These devices send out 8000 volts and they’ll do this ever few moments to make sure the vermin stays dead because otherwise it’ll just friggen get up and walk away. What mortal creature gets up after being hit by 8000 volts? That’s more than they use to kill prisoners!

Photo Thanks www.fischerenc.com

Photo Thanks www.fischerenc.com

“Don’t make me angry. You won’t like me when I’m angry.”

Sources:

http://theophanes.hubpages.com/hub/Interesting-Facts-About-Rats

http://www.livescience.com/2325-amazingly-sensitive-rat-whiskers-explained.html

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/electronic-rat-trap.html

http://science.discovery.com/tv/weird-creatures/top-ten/rats-4.html

http://discovermagazine.com/2006/dec/20-things-rats

http://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/shrew-info.htm

http://www.wild-facts.com/tag/shrew-facts/

http://www.wild-facts.com/tag/armored-shrew/

http://britishwildlifeandnature.wikia.com/wiki/Weasel

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Least_weasel

http://curiousnature.info/A1-Short-tailed%20Shrew.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Short-tailed_Shrew

http://www2.brevard.edu/jefrick/shrews.htm

5 Super Adorable Exotic Pets (who make absolutely terrible pets)

Written by Monte Richard. Posted in Daily Daft, Funny But True

5. Ferrets

Video: Ferrets


Photo Thanks: www.sheknows.com

Photo Thanks: www.sheknows.com

“Awww…he’s all tuckered out. Now he’s going to curl up in a nest of you’re socks he’s crammed behind the fridge.”

Ferrets, those mischievous masked scamps. They’re like slinky, sinuous, cats with comically long necks and bodies. These are affectionate, playful, inquisitive animals. If you get them descented they don’t smell too bad and they can be litter trained with some patience. In fact, a ferret or two would make an excellent addition to your home. Provided you can keep the darn things from killing themselves. Ferrets curiosity and energy mixed with the fact that they can squeeze into tight places pretty much guarantees that they’ll get themselves in trouble unless you ferret proof your house. If you thought babies were helpless and stupid, here are just a few of the many many things you need to do to keep your suicide prone weasel safe.

Photo Thanks: Critteristic.com

Photo Thanks: Critteristic.com

“They’re dead…but it’s still cute.”

They love holes, so plug up everything. Don’t assume your ferret hasn’t crawled into your vacuum cleaner or your drain pipes (don’t turn on the garbage disposal!). Rocking chairs and fold out beds are pretty much blunt guillotines, so get rid of them. Keep your toilet bowl lid down or they’ll drown themselves. And they love to eat odd things, so watch what you leave laying around. Vets have pulled foam ear plugs, paper clips, erasers, rubber bands, mousepad pieces, Velcro, calculator keypads, stockings out of their stomachs. Always check the dirty clothes before throwing them on to wash because rodent blood will absolutely ruin a blouse. Make sure your medicine is kept in childproof containers and is out of reach (wait…seriously?). You should also probably look into getting your ferret a bright yellow helmet with a warning label that reads ‘special’.

4. Kinkajous

Video: Kinkajou

photo thanks: blue-n-gold.com

photo thanks: blue-n-gold.com

“The cutest animal ninja of them all.”

This ferret-monkey-bear looking thing is not only cute, but also very playful. The Kinkajou is energetic, loves to leap and climb, has a prehensile tail like a monkey and will use you as it’s personal tree. It also has a six-inch long tongue. Which is all awesome right? And it’ll bite the ever-loving hell out of you if you mess up, just like it did to Paris Hilton…twice.

Even though their diet consists mainly of fruit they have extremely sharp teeth and a strong bite. Scientists don’t really know why this frugivore even needs friggin vampire-like incisors. What kind of fruit can’t be taken out with anything less than fangs? Regardless many owners swear that these creatures are gentle and affectionate. Just as long as you don’t crowd them too much, don’t make too many sudden movements, respect their territory and don’t wake them up during the day. It’s also recommended that let them have their own room cuz they need lots of space. You should probably give strong consideration to turning your entire life over to your Kinkajou. It would make things easier. (So yes, it’s exactly like being married.) Follow these simple guidelines and you’ll come away mostly unscathed…probably. They also live anywhere from 20 to 40 years, so be prepared to have this hyper, saber-toothed squirrel-chimp around forever. Oh, and in at least three states Raccoon Roundworms have been discovered in the feces of Kinkajou pets…which can be fatal to humans…and Kinkajou’s can’t be litter trained (or any kind of trained actually).

3. Owls

Owl Video

Because chicks dig vicious killer bird that can maim and/or disfigure you for life.”

Wook, it’s a soft fwuzzy widdle owl. He’s so tiny and fruffy and wovable. I wants one! Friggin Harry Potter’s got an owl mom. Why can’t I have one? Well first of all it’s illegal. But who cares right? People still keep these things. But there are other reasons that should make you reconsider adopting one of these plushy raptors. Mostly, it’s because they’re birds of prey, so besides having razor sharp claws and beaks that can cut you, your furniture and virtually anything else in your house to shreds, they’ll also see any other pets as potential food. We can’t stress enough how powerful and sharp and their talons are. They can cut you to the bone just by being playful. Some of the larger owls have a grip of up to two hundred pounds per square inch. Humans can barely squeeze for twenty.

Photo Thanks www.3news.co.nz

Photo Thanks www.3news.co.nz

“You’re perfectly safe as long as you don’t stop petting him.”

And if the bird has imprinted on you then it’ll think you’re its mate. Which basically means it owns you and it’ll attack anyone who comes near you. I hope you don’t plan to date. During mating season it’ll hoot and screech all night long too. And you’d better darn well hoot back and you’d better act like you like it…if you know what’s good for you. And they won’t like anyone else but you which means only you can feed them, so no vacations away from home…ever. They also have special diets which consists of whole animals. They will also throw up everything they don’t digest, like livers and intestines, so be prepared to clean that loveliness up.

2. Slow Loris

What is a Slow Loris? Watch these videos first:  Slow Loris

Photo Thanks: Cuteoverload.com

Photo Thanks: Cuteoverload.com

“Feed me! The cuteness compels you.”

Holy heck on a stick!!! That has got to be the cutest thing on the face of this forsaken mud ball we call earth! That precious guy is packing some epic, weapons grade adorableness. That innocent, wide-eyed little bugger is just begging to have the heck cuddled out of him. He’s such a slow, itty-bitty monkey. It’s like a tiny, fuzzy old man. Why doesn’t everyone have one of these sweet little raccoon sloths? Because they have poisonous elbows (no, seriously). The Slow Loris has special glands in their elbows which secret a toxin that causes rapid swelling and intense pain (it’s all true, why would we make this up?). They lick their elbows so that they’re bite can deliver this venom to the bloodstream (go ahead, try to lick your elbow).

photo thanks: weird-bizzare-creepy.tumblr.com

photo thanks: weird-bizzare-creepy.tumblr.com

“This may look like a ‘don’t beat me’ pose, but in reality it’s getting its elbows in attack position.”

Owning one is illegal, because they’re endangered in the wild. Their poison also makes them smell like sweat socks. They like to bed down in dirty cloths hampers (cuz it smells like home probably). They have extremely sharp teeth and despite their slow appearance they can strike like lighting. The poison doesn’t kill, but it causes painful throbbing and swelling.

1. Sugar Gliders

video:Sugar Gliders

photo thanks: www.washingtonpost.com

photo thanks: www.washingtonpost.com

It’s wearing a bow! She’s a proper little lady! What…why is my arm wet?”

These lovely flying squirrel-possums are small, cute and they love to play and run around. And the best part is they can glide! You and a friend can toss one around in the back yard like a baseball (please don’t). What could be more fun and adorable than an aerial hamster with stripes like an English badger? And then it pees on you. As a matter of fact, it’ll probably do more than pee. Sugar gliders have no real control over when they defecate. When they wake up, they pee. When they eat, they pee. When you take them out to play, they pee. But don’t worry, that probably means he likes you.

photo thanks: www.dailymail.co.uk

photo thanks: www.dailymail.co.uk

The fur bat strikes!”

Another great thing about sugar gliders is that they suck the juices out of their food. They don’t really ‘eat’ fruit. They just squeeze it to a mushy pulp and then they spit it out…all over the wall, the floor, the ceiling. These little critters are renowned for making a huge mess. They can also smell strongly (but maybe that’s because it’s covered in urine 24 hours a day). And don’t think you can get just one. Sugar gliders are social creatures and they need lots of attention or they might freak out and attack you or themselves or just straight out die. (Did we mention that in the wild they chew threw bark so you’re skin is laughably easy for them to peal away?) It’s best if you have two so they don’t get lonely. So that’s twice the mess, twice the smell but also twice the fun!

Oh, and they bark all night long cuz their nocturnal animals. Sweet dreams.

If you are looking to block out the insane barking of a sugar glider, or just the voices in your head you can try the memory foam sleep mask with headphone input from DaftGadgets.com

Sources:

Ferrets

http://www.seniorlink.co.nz/interests/pets/ferret.shtml
http://www.all-about-ferrets.com/ferret-proofing.html

Kinkajou

http://www.jandaexotics.com/Kinkajou.html

Owls

http://www.festivalofowls.com/owlsaspets.htm
http://www.buzzle.com/articles/owls-as-pets.html

Slow Loris

http://www.kingsnake.com/toxinology/loris/slow_loris.html

Sugar Gliders

http://www.sugarglider.com/

http://factoidz.com/why-is-my-sugar-glider-throwing-his-food-all-around/

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