Spend ten minutes of your evening looking up facts about the ocean and you’ll be convinced we live on an alien planet. The ocean is as vast as it is deep, impossible to truly understand and even more impossible to fully explore. Nestled in waters both shallow and deep are ocean creatures that seem pulled straight from an Orson Welles work, including the Caribbean Reef Octopus. Our story today doesn’t start in the ocean. Instead, it starts in a small aquarium in Virginia, the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center. Not too long ago, aquarium employee Matthew Klepeisz and his team got a front-row seat to a natural miracle, the live birth of a Caribbean Reef Octopus.
According to the team at the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, the Caribbean Reef Octopus in question laid almost 200 eggs. According to research collected by oceanic researchers, the Caribbean Reef Octopus will lay up to 500 eggs in a season. The hatchlings will take roughly 14 weeks before they are 75% the size of their mother with male hatchlings reaching full maturity in 140 days. Back in Virginia, the aquarium staff would watch in awe as the first of the 200 eggs hatched right in front of their eyes. The staff took a stunning video fo the birth before summarily sharing it to the internet, garnering millions of views along the way.
The reason that all eyes were on an aquarium in Virginia for this octopus’ birth was simple, the video looked like it was pulled from out of this world. In the incredible clip, you’ll see a tiny and equally cute octopus break free from its egg. After blooming from the egg sac, the baby octopus experiences an incredible change in color, a feature not unknown to this class of animal. Klepeisz said of the creature’s color change, “It may have been related to the immediate instinct to camouflage for protection.” Klepeisz added that his team wasn’t sure why the octopus immediately changed colors, though many researchers will have their theories. In any event, this is a natural reaction found among octopus in the wild, too.
While the stunning video of the squid’s alien-like birth will garner the views, members of the scientific field likely hope that it allows for more public education and admiration for the ocean. The Caribbean Reef Octopus is considered one of the most intelligent invertebrates in the ocean. The octopus can remember where potential dangers live in order to avoid areas in the future. The Caribbean Reef Octopus has also exhibited intelligence when it comes to learning to disguise itself among coconuts and algae to avoid predation. With such a wonderfully intelligent animal before us, how can we not want to do everything in our power to protect the ocean and other creatures inside it?
DoorDash Yelling Misunderstanding Solved With The Internets Help￼
Have you ever spoken too loud or yelled the wrong thing and didn’t mean it at the time, like in a crowded restaurant? Well, that’s what happened to Mark Polchleb, except the person he accidentally yelled at was an innocent DoorDash driver dropping off Polchleb’s meal. Fortunately, the customer tried his best to make up for the mistake.
Repeat stories are all over the Internet about the abuse gig workers have had to endure just to make extra income as a second job or earn a living freelancing via services. DoorDash has become extremely popular in the food delivery industry, utilizing freelancers to connect the bridge between restaurants and customers at home wanting food delivered. The company’s business spiked, obviously, during the pandemic when both customers and restaurants wanted food bought and delivered but couldn’t do so in the restaurant itself due to social distancing. However, while business exploded, so did the rudeness drivers and delivery people had to put up with.
So, when a driver had to deliver an order to Polchleb’s door, it wasn’t an outrageous shock to be yelled at through the door, but it wasn’t a wonderful experience either. Unknown to the driver, however, Polchleb wasn’t yelling at the worker; instead, he had gotten verbally frustrated with his dog, but Polchleb didn’t realize his mistake was misinterpreted by the driver outside until it was too late.
The whole mistake happened with the driver getting near the front door. Polchleb’s dog reacted first and started barking up a storm. He yelled at the dog, probably using a few choice words. Unfortunately, the driver thought the verbal cussing was at him; the surprise and reaction turned to have been filmed on Polchleb’s doorcam. Worse, Polchleb opened the door, grabbed the food, and kept up the yelling at his dog. The driver probably thought the Australian customer was nuts.
Later, when Polchleb took some time to check out his camera’s footage, the mistake became obvious. The key reaction in the driver was when Polchleb yelled at his dog, “Get away from the door, mate!” The driver then backed up noticeably and left. Most folks would chalk up the goof to a personal whoops and move on. However, Polchleb felt genuinely bad and wanted to do something about it.
So, given how easy it was to reach a lot of people quickly, Polchleb decided to reach out online via social media, hopefully connecting to the driver through friends or direct. If it worked for companies and marketers, the online reach could work for Polchleb as well. So, he posted an apology on TikTok. Lots of users took the post as genuine and sympathized with what Polchleb was trying to do. Many noted they felt sick at the thought of being in the same situation. Mark kept posting, telling everyone he could online about his mission to find the driver to make up for the delivery mistake.
Finally, Polchleb was able to connect. It turned out the delivery driver’s child saw the video and told her father about it. They connected with Polchleb online. Sami, the driver, agreed to meet in person, and Polchleb got to learn about the driver and his family. The DoorDash job was intended to help Sami visit his son overseas, and the driver quietly kept the matter to himself like so many drivers do regularly. However, when DoorDash found about the story, the company also got involved, giving Sami elite status in the company and a permanent pay raise for life. Between that and some other help, Sami now has a very good chance to connect with his son again. And Mark Polchleb was able to clear his conscience as well.
Halifax Retiree Finds Her Old Rollerskates Online
The trend of people wanting to relive their memories as kids and teens through physical things they used to have earlier in life isn’t fading. In fact, even as people get older and many are positively in retirement, the trend has grown exponentially. The proof is easily seen in how expansive sites like eBay, for example, have grown in the last two decades, becoming global markets for used items that people want to own again. However, it’s one thing to buy a replacement for what one had earlier in life. It’s quite another to actually buy the same item decades later!
Halifax native Renee Forrestall decided at the active age of 60 that she wanted to get back on roller-skates again. It’s a common situation; people have more time on their hands after the kids have moved out and possibly are retired from work, and activity is promoted by everyone as a great way to keep the pounds off as well as keep the brain sharp. Roller-skating seemed to make sense for Renee, and it would give her a way to exercise that she remembered enjoying.
So, off Renee went to the store, and she quickly had a brand new set under her feet. However, old memories are hard to shake, and the new skates just didn’t feel like the old ones she used to have. Something about the fit with the old skating style made a big difference to her. So, knowing the Internet auction sites and similar were a great place to find old stuff, she started searching. Soon enough, Renee found a set that looked an awful lot like the rollerskates she remembered having four decades earlier. They were old, needed cleaning and laces, but they seemed to fit the bill.
Renee could have been completely wasting her time. The online ad didn’t even have the foot size listed, but she took a gamble and connected with the ad owner about the skates listed. In fact, Renee even traveled in person to the owner to try the skates on and buy them there if they fit. Once at the seller’s residence, she put her foot in the first skate and was shocked. The rollerskate not only fit, it matched her foot correctly!
Renee was a bit flabbergasted by what was going on and started to lace up the rollerskate. To do so, she had to move the tongue of the shoe part, and the writing on it caught her eye. Renee was literally looking at the name of a previous owner, and that name was hers. At that moment, the rollerskate fit and the name seemed to all make sense. She was buying back her old roller skates from almost half a century earlier.
Like most kids, Renee had written her name on the shoe tongue in case the skates got lost. The pair were originally sold by Renee when she was at university, and she forgot about them. To get them back was not only the thrill of finding something old for memory’s sake again, she had found literally her own rollerskates!
And, as an aside, the seller’s real name, no kidding, was James Bond. Talk about coincidences.
A Grade School, a Crow and a Foul Vocabulary
What do you do with crow with a foul mouth, and it wants to be your friend? That was the dilemma for one class at Allen Dale Elementary in Grants Pass. Normally, birds stay clear of humans, using their ability to fly to stay out of reach, unless doing an occasional drop or dive bomb to chase folks away from a nest. However, in the case of one particular crow, she wanted interaction. The particular bird made it pretty clear it wanted inside a school, pecking on windows and doors until she finally found a way into a 5th grade room for a few snacks.
The crow didn’t behave like a wild bird at all, being extremely friendly and landing on the kids. What was really noticeable, however, was that the bird could make sounds that imitated human phrases. And in that collection of verbal enunciations, the bird was apparently taught how to swear. Just like a like a pirate’s parrot, the crow was barking up a storm, completely flavored with salty language. When the local animal officers showed up to deal with the bird, they took one look at the fiasco and culprit and decided it wasn’t their type of case to deal with. The folks backed up and refused to do anything further. Eventually, however, the bird was in deep doo-doo. The Oregon State Police wildlife officer showed up instead. This time, the law was going to be applied, even if the bird didn’t have a clue what that meant.
The first question with the officer’s presence was exactly how to catch the crow. No one really wanted to use a net in case it traumatized what was clearly a friendly animal. However, every time the officer tried to get control, the crow would show around or next to one of the kids and hide. As it turned out, the government had to give up, and the bird spent the night on the school roof or nearby when the kids went home.
The avian culprit had clearly learned a wide vocabulary. By local count, it had something near 40 different words it could use, and the bird mental dictionary apparently got bigger with more interaction with the school kids. As it turned out, the bird had a name and was indeed cared for by humans earlier in its life. Cosmo was a recovered baby crow at the time who was cared for by Daphnie Colpron’s mother years earlier. Cosmo took quite a liking to the family and the farm they lived on as it grew to adulthood, chasing the family dogs and raising a ruckus during the day.
As it turned out, Cosmo, in her older age, decided to broaden interaction with humans, and started targeting local schools for more talking and play with human children. The bird began to learn the arrival schedule and made itself a regular at a local preschool before showing up at Allan Dale Elementary. Daphnie thought Cosmos had disappeared at one point after coming back from a holiday when they found out Cosmo had been captured and turned over to a bird sanctuary. However, Cosmo didn’t mingle well with other birds, and the sanctuary released her. Back she went to humans and daily chattering with local kids in Grants Pass. Daphnie and family eventually picked up Cosmo and took her home again, and the bird is doing just fine.
The Giant Garbage Monster in the Baltimore Harbor
If you happen to be in Baltimore and looking out on the water, don’t be surprised if you see a gigantic contraption with cartoon eyeballs chugging along in the water. You have been blessed with being witness to the Mr. Trash Wheel doing its job.
Trash interception, or the process of diverting pollution and garbage from ending up in natural locations or general landfill, has been a fundamental function of cities for decades. In particular, big cities have been challenged with improving their garbage removal as well as finding ways to recycle better. The Mr. Trash Wheel is one of the latest, more creative approaches developed in Baltimore, Maryland, particularly targeting the waterfront area that is seen by thousands every month. And, it’s also quite popular. When not gobbling up trash on the waterways, the Mr. Trash Wheel has become a popular target for social media selfies.
Design-wise, Mr. Trash Wheel operates as a floating garbage interceptor catching floating debris and consumer trash in the Jones Fall water path, a part of the Baltimore Inner Harbor water system. With an over-emphasized mouth and goofy eyes, the interceptor already has a fan club among locals in Maryland, and the city management is quite pleased with its actual garbage removal performance as well. Had it not been for this particular interceptor, thousands of pounds of floating trash would simply make its way out to the Atlantic Ocean affecting coastlines up and down Maryland state and further.
John Kellet can take credit for the Mr. Trash Wheel. A local business founder of Clearwater Mills, he began to become personally irritated by the amount of trash Kellet would witness after every storm, with the new drainwater pushing trash through the Harbor to the ocean. So, he decided to do something about it. With a bit of thinking and creativity, Kellet realized the market was entirely missing a viable tool for job. So, his entrepreneurial side kicked in, and Kellet took on the job of creating a solution.
Plastic has been the biggest factor of the problem. It doesn’t degrade, it floats, and it’s poisonous to wildlife. So, Kellet targeted that part of the trash environment first. Since that first development, the Mr. Trash Wheel, has since diverted well over 3 million pounds of plastic garbage, as well as other floating material picked up in the Harbor. The tool has been so effective, three more units were created to help keep the Harbor clean as well.
Interestingly, the Trash Wheel design is not very high tech. It incorporates a simple water paddle that utilizes the water’s own motion and power to work. As the water pushes against the mill paddles, it powers the unit’s operation (or with solar power), which scoops out track and floating material from the water and puts in on a conveyer track. This in turn pulls the trash up and out of the water and into a catch container for removal. The feed occurs via bouy net that traps the debris as it floats in the water towards the Trash Wheel. The trash container then just gets periodically emptied while the Trash Wheel works 24/7. Even more noticeable, the units can be managed remotely, increasing the pump function to turn the wheel as needed.
The benefits of the Trash Wheel in Baltimore’s Harbor have been immediate and noticeable. The device was extremely effective, and the floating trash levels dropped significantly after just the first few weeks. With the results so obvious, the additional three Trash Wheels were ordered by the municipality and put into action elsewhere in Baltimore’s waterways.
The story just goes to show as bad as consumerism and trash can get, people can be just as creative and effective in cleaning pollution up if they put their mind to it.
BackHoes coordinated to “Dance” to Metallica
Dance is an art of meaningful selected sequences of human movements performed rhythmically. Due to the change in industrialization, today, dance is practiced by many machines such as robots, which imitate human moves.
Aside from imitating human rhythmic movements, dance bears some profound message, including expressing an idea or emotion and realizing thoughts or feelings.
This art of actual dance has existed in India for more than 6200 years B.C, and while studying the first dynasty of Egypt, it has been there since 3000 B.C.
Much archaeological evidence gives relief showing a kind of dance or body language as Egypt’s culture advanced. Also, some paintings were made depicting musicians and dancers.
In the early days, Americans, Australians, and Africans originally danced for spiritual entertainment reasons. People will dance at funerals weddings after a harvest. However, some of these reasons still influence dance to date.
Today most people dance for entertainment purposes, keep the body fit, celebrating something significant like a wedding, winning, or birthday while others use dance as a source of income.
Recently a Quebec firm has taken dance to a whole new level with its fleet of construction vehicles performing a synchronized dance to a classical version song.
This construction firm gave a new purpose to the words ‘heavy metal’ by performing a dance routine using backhoes, something we have never seen before.
Montreal heavy metals and backhoes make an excellent natural combination. This is after all the is equipment heavy and made from metal. Recently a Quebec construction firm has decided to take the pairing a step further.
According to the video published on Youtube, workers of Bertrand Ostiguy Inc., a Sheffield based excavation firm, decided to take their excavating trucks through some unusual dance
Moves, which were all strategically planned and written for an orchestra play version of Metallica’s classic ‘Nothing Else Matters.’ By Finnish symphonic metal band Apocalyptica.
Imagine the excavators’ dip, spin, bow, and pivot in concert, displaying a rare epic show at either construction sites or Metallica moshpits. The video on Youtube was shot by a young 14-year-old teenager Julien ARES whose uncle owns the company.
“For a very long time, my uncle had this idea. At a glance, we did a zoom for Christmas, and the idea popped out about doing the dancing excavators; we all laughed hilariously at the concept but honestly, we were thinking about it all night.” said Julien.
At a glance, I wanted to do something slow and rhythmic since the excavators are gigantic, and they are annoying slow, and because of this, I wanted a slow song. Unfortunately, the initial songs had too many high notes, and I wanted something with more bass. That’s when my uncle suggested he look up at the legendary hard rockers.
Surprisingly at this young age, Ares has been making and shooting videos for his older brother’s company. Julien Ares’s ambition is larger than a few dancing backhoes.
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