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Aquarium in Virginia Captures Stunning Birth of Alien-like Octopus!

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?

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The Giant Garbage Monster in the Baltimore Harbor

Danielle S

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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.

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BackHoes coordinated to “Dance” to Metallica

Amanda J

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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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Real Life Dopplegangers of Cartoon Characters

Liz L

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Have you ever met someone you thought you knew? What if that person turned out to be a dead-on ringer for a cartoon character? What would you do? Would you say something to the person about it? Don’t be surprised if someone beat you to it. There are dozens of folks walking around in real life that have a surprisingly accurate resemblance to cartoon characters, both classic as well as modern. Here are some examples.

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20 Brutal Breakup Messages That Will Leave You Lovesick and Lonely!

Danielle S

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Do you remember the end of your first relationship? Of course, you do. We all do. Whether it came to an end over something small or large, the feelings were probably the same: dejection.  While dejection is a tough pill to swallow, we can all get over our old loves by moving forward in life while pretending it never happened. Unfortunately for the people that you are about to read about, their breakups were very public and a little harder to bury with their past.

Today, we are going to take a closer look at 20 brutal breakup messages that will leave you lovesick and lonely!

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Austin Restaurant Turns to Witty Pandemic Signs for Laughs

Jolie

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When the United States shut itself down under the auspices of the coronavirus pandemic in early March 2020, few people realized what was going to happen. Now almost a year later, the coronavirus pandemic has continued to rage on and people are growing increasingly frustrated, scared, and restless. When will quarantine measures be allowed to go away? When will a vaccine appear?

With so many tough questions hanging over the heads of not just everyday citizens, but also business owners. More than 100k restaurants in the city of Chicago have closed down on a long-term basis since the beginning of March and the city of Austin, TX, is probably not far behind. This is where our story takes place, at the front door of the El Arroyo, a popular restaurant located in downtown Austin.

The El Arroyo was established in the 80s and they’ve retained their sense of wonder and edgy comedy ever since. Laura Schulte works as the social media manager for El Arroyo and she has been a major player in the production of their comical signs. Schulte says, “The signs bring a lot of laughter”. While previous signs had made jokes based on pop-culture references, the team at El Arroyo has been focusing more on bringing laughs through their pandemic references this time around.

If you have been an active internet user for the past eight months, which you probably have, you’ve likely seen some of the signs that El Arroyo has been placing up over the past several months. While these signs are largely for laughs, they also play an important role in reducing stress levels and preventing anxiety from becoming an overloading burden.

One sign was put up that read, “I Never imagined I’d go up to the bank teller with a mask on and ask for money.” That is the kind of sign that we can all look at, agree with, and share with friends for a laugh. It is true! How dramatically has our world changed in the better part of the past eight months? A year ago if we told you that you had to go to the bank with a mask over your face, you’d be blown away by the mere suggestion.

While some signs are focused on the pandemic, other signs take larger jabs at 2020 as a whole. One El Arroyo sign read, “Have we tried putting 2020 in rice” which is a joking reference to what individuals do when their phones get wet. Another sign read, “Just remember, someone out there is quarantined with your ex.”

What do you think of signs like the ones being posted at El Arroyo? Are you a fan of sharing a few laughs at the expense of the pandemic? Do you think that these signs go too far or are you down with a few fun laughs?

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