the legend of "Kuno the Killer" lives on.

Legendary Dog-Eating Catfish Dies

BERLIN (Reuters) - A giant catfish that ate a dog and terrorized a German lake for years has washed up dead, but the legend of "Kuno the Killer" lives on. A gardener discovered the carcass of a five-foot-long catfish weighing 77 pounds this week, a spokesman for the western city of Moenchengladbach said on Friday.

Kuno became a local celebrity in 2001 when he sprang from the waters of the Volksgarten park lake to swallow a Dachshund puppy whole. He evaded repeated attempts to capture him.

"He was our Loch Ness monster," said Uwe Heil, member of "Kuno's Friends," a local rock band named after the fish.

Several fishermen identified the carcass as Kuno, but doubts linger. "That's not the Kuno we know," said Leon Cornelius, another member of "Kuno's Friends." He said he had seen several huge catfish in the lake.

Low water levels and a summer heat wave probably killed the catfish, among the biggest found in Germany. The northern city of Bremen plans to stuff it and put in a museum.



U.S. Clears New Use for Lilly Growth Hormone

Eli Lilly's hormone, Humatrope, has been sold in the United States since 1987 and used for treating children with growth-hormone deficiencies. With the new approval, Indianapolis-based Lilly will be able to market Humatrope for short children with normal levels of the hormone and no evidence of a disease that stunts growth.

The FDA said it approved the treatment for the shortest 1.2 percent of children. For 10-year-old boys and girls, that would correspond to a height of less than 4 feet 1 inch. Their expected adult height without treatment would be less than 5 feet 3 inches for men and 4 feet 11 inches for women. [...]

An advisory committee in June voted 8-2 to recommend approving Humatrope for the new use after debating whether children who are otherwise healthy should be given multiple injections every week for years in order to grow what may amount to a few inches. At that meeting, Lilly argued that short children often face teasing and bullying, as well as social isolation as adults, and therefore needed a treatment option.

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rope 'em, pull 'em, brand 'em

A scene from the recent Village People tryouts:

Rollin', rollin', rollin'
Though the streams are swollen
Keep them dogies rollin'
Rain and wind and weather
Hellbent for leather
Wishin' my gal was by my side
All the things I'm missin'
Good victuals, love and kissin'
Are waiting at the end of my ride

Move 'em on, head 'em up
Head 'em up, move 'em on
Move 'em on, head 'em up
Count 'em out, ride 'em in
Ride 'em in, count 'em out
Count 'em out, ride 'em in

Keep movin', movin', movin'
Though they're disapprovin'
Keep them dogies movin'
Don't try to understand 'em
Just rope 'em, pull and brand 'em
Soon we'll be living high and wide
My hearts calculatin'
My true love will be waitin'
Be waitin' at the end of my ride

Current Music: Garbage -- Push It ♬

I sure do like the glowing critters

"Glowing mice: A fluorescent mouse family, provided by the Level Biotech, a transgenic company, is displayed inside a box during the Bio Taiwan 2003 at the World Trade Center in Taipei. The mice were implanted with the green fluorescent gene into the mice embryo combining genetic engineering and transplantion technology. (AFP/Sam Yeh)"

(However, I remain skeptical as to whether they actually look like this, or there is camera/lighting trickery involved. Have any of you ever see a glow-critter and a human in the same photo?)

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now that's a bike

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911 Survivor

"9-11 Survivor is a game mod based on the Unreal Game engine. It is a game project that examines the role of media in our culture, and the influence that continuous, hyper exposure has on our overall perception of the distinctions between reality and media mediation. This project raises questions regarding how and why popular media forms, such as games and movies, deal with tragedy, conflict and violence."

Um... riiiiiight. Sure.

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Barry Andrews tonight

Barry Andrews (of Shriekback) is performing tonight (Wed Jul 23) at Cafe du Nord.

I just did the math, and realized that my Shriekback t-shirt -- which I bought when I saw them on the Big Night Music tour -- is 17 years old. This t-shirt is old enough to drive. What the hell?

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120,000 years deep

The North Greenland Ice Core Project has reached the end of the line at last.
After seven years and two miles of drilling, GRIP researchers ran out of ice and hit bedrock. [...]

When the ice core finally arrives in Copenhagen, scientists will need years to fully analyze it. They will measure levels of oxygen isotopes, study the gases trapped in microscopic air bubbles, and look for tiny bits of prehistoric dust literally frozen in time. With those scraps of evidence, they can determine what the temperature was at the North GRIP site for every single summer and winter going back at least 120,000 years. [...]

They knew the bottom was warm, heated by geothermal energy in the underlying rock, but they did not expect to be able to sample it. But it appears that the liquid spurted up and froze solid to the drill bit, which had passed through much cooler ice on the way down. The pocket of water could have been covered ever since the ice sheet was first formed, millions of years ago. "I couldn't believe my eyes," said Dr. Dorthe Dahl-Jensen, the project's chief scientist. "It could contain evidence of ancient life."

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in no particular order:

  • About a week ago, I gave another try to enabling anonymous posting with screening. So far there have been about 20 anonymous posts here, and I think I've only bothered to unscreen 1. An amazing number of them were of the "G1BB0R M3 WAR3Z" variety. (To be fair, without the 'l33tspeak, but still.)
  • What's with all the people who suddenly seem to be thinking that light gray text on a white background is a good idea? Contrast, people. Look it up.

  • Several times recently I've gone to an old URL, found a 404, then gone to the Wayback Machine to be denied again with "blocked by the site owner via robots.txt". Damn you all to hell! It makes me want to modify my browser to save a local copy of every page I've ever viewed.

    I really hope is ignoring robots.txt and saving everything anyway (and just not letting people view blocked documents.) It's a moral imperative: copyright laws change, but oblivion is forever.

  • Corollary: Flash equals oblivion.

  • I like this song. That is all.

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when you can pluck the BRAAAAAINS from my hand, you will have learned

The mummified body of Thai Buddhist monk Dang Piyasilo, or "Loung Pordaeng", is displayed at Wat Khunaram on Samui island. (AFP/Pornchai Kittiwongsakul)

See also The Onion: Monk Gloats Over Yoga Championship: 'I am the serenest!' he says.

"That's my meditative position of spiritual ecstasy, not his," remarked Gupta. "He stole my thunder." Bikram denied the charge, saying, "Gupta's been talking like that ever since he was a 3rd century Egyptian slave-owner."
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