About 12% of spices imported into the U.S. each year is contaminated with insects, animal excrement, rodent hair and even rubber bands, according to a Food and Drug Administration draft report. The study was conducted in response to recent cases of salmonella found in imported spices. It looked at ways to reduce the rates of human illness caused by contamination in the seasonings. “Nearly all of the insects found in spice samples were stored product pests, indicating inadequate packing or storage conditions. The presence of rodent hair (without a root) in spices is generally indicative of contamination by rodent feces,” the report said. The FDA called the problem “systemic” and identified 14 outbreaks from 1973 to 2010 that sickened 2,000 people and hospitalized 128 worldwide. The relatively small number of outbreaks over that time may be because consumers use only small amounts of spices each time, the agency said. Still, the FDA found 7% of imported spices … [Read more...] about Imported spices tainted with bugs, hair
Mean boys have been terrorizing schoolgirls since blackboards were invented. But rarely does a bully land in court – or in the pages of the local paper. In 1915, an angry father and his 11-year-old daughter stood in a Hennepin County courtroom and accused “the meanest boy” in school of lopping off the girl’s auburn curls. A Minneapolis Tribune reporter was there to capture the drama. Within weeks, the alleged bully, Eddie Schmidt (or Smith), was cleared of the charge of assaulting Mary (or Katherine) Weinand on her way home from a one-room schoolhouse a few miles west of Corcoran. The Tribune played that development as a whodunit, asking: "Who cut Mary Weinand's hair?" There are no further mentions of the case in the Tribune. And, despite my above-average Googling skills, I have not been able to solve the mystery. But I did find Allan Weinand, whose grandfather, Art Weinand, was in Mary’s class; Art and Mary were first cousins once removed. Allan, a … [Read more...] about Jan. 23, 1915: ‘Meanest boy’ cuts off girl’s hair
Democracy Dies in Darkness Sections Home Subscribe Username Sign In Account Profile Newsletters & Alerts Gift Subscriptions Contact Us Help Desk Subscribe Account Profile Newsletters & Alerts Gift Subscriptions Contact Us Help Desk Accessibility for screenreader The Switch Review Review Interpretation of the news based on evidence, including data, as well as anticipating how events might unfold based on past events by Geoffrey A. Fowler by Geoffrey A. Fowler Email the author March 15 Email the author Meet the Triclops, our tool for testing multiple smartphone cameras all at the same time. (Javaria Khan for The Washington Post) Three giant companies each claims to make the best smartphone camera, but I didn’t take anyone’s word for it. All I needed is a three-way selfie stick. How better to judge, I figured, than by taking the same photo on three different phones? So out … [Read more...] about The iPhone no longer has best phone camera. By a hair.
Photo courtesy Madame Tussauds If you’re wondering whether his decision to alter his haircut sent shockwaves around the world, well, heck yes. It’s like the premises of chaos theory - a butterfly flaps its wings in the Amazon, and sets in motion a series of atmospheric adjustments that result in a hurricane over Burma. Isn’t that deep & philosophical, when you think about it? We’re all connected. Anyway. If you’re wondering, Hollywood Reporter says that the statues of the singer will be pre-cut: LONDON -- Justin Bieber is shaping up to be the next waxworks sensation at Madame Tussauds, which will unveil his new statue at three Tussauds locations around the world in March. The statue, which will likely sport his trademark bowl-cut haircut rather than his newer crop, will go on show in London, New York and Amsterdam next month. So they won’t change the statue because he changed his hair. Does this disprove the butterfly effect? Wikipedia … [Read more...] about Museum has to choose: old Bieber hair, or new?
Gaga, the greatest creative force on the planet - just ask her! - has a new song out, and like other masterworks of our culture, it’s a brooding meditation the existential difficulties of establishing a moral center in a cosmos devoid of such intellectual constructs. Just kidding, it’s about hair. She is her hair, and hair is freedom. Here’s the audio track. Don’t worry, it’s been sanctioned by Gaga Inc. PS - why are some people so hard on Gaga? Because it’s fun; because the fans are so intense about her greatness; because Gaga is so intense about her greatness. As Gawker quoted her the other day: I myself can look at almost any hemline, silhouette, bead work, or heel architecture and tell you very precisely who designed it first, what French painter they stole it from, how many designers reinvented it after them, and what cultural and musical movement parented the birth, death, and resurrection of that particular trend. Okay. If we … [Read more...] about Lady Gaga is also whipping her hair