News of the Weird: 5 Odd Topics in News this Week

Phoebe Cohen, Scarlet Staff

1. In a Timely Manner

Let’s admit it. When we first watched “Back to the Future,” we all wanted to be in Mary McFly’s shoes. But we simply could not do that because we would make a time paradox… right? Maybe not, at least not according to a recent study made by the University of Queensland. Scientists involved in the study concluded that if you went back in time, traveling to the past and messing up something would not hinder the actual timeline. The spacetime continuum would  correct itself eventually. For example, if you went back to stop patient 0 from contracting the COVID-19 virus, then it would turn out that the new “you” in that new future would have no motivation to go stop patient 0 in the first place. It is rather confusing to think about, but a valid and acclaimed study published in a peer reviewed journal called Classical and Quantum Gravity.

Source: In a Timely Manner

2. Penny for Your Thoughts

In today’s pandemic, there is a shortage of a lot of things. One Such thing? Coins. The Federal Coin Reserve is running low on coinage since many people are not out shopping with cash, meaning that coins are currently low in circulation at the moment. But for the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores, amassing coins is not a problem. In order to solve “pandemic boredom,” the aquarium keeps employees employed and keeps their coin usage going by collecting people’s wishes thrown into its wells and counting them up. Approximately 100 gallons of coins have been cleaned and extracted from the aquarium’s wells which will all be donated to the care of animals at the facility; and thus, effectively controlling the circulation of coins. A win-win!

Source: Penny for Your Thoughts

3. Swiper No Swiping!

Berlin is experiencing a serious theft problem. A fox in the area was reported as the sole thief of over 100 shoes from different households in Berlin. One such victim, who lost his new pair of expensive running shoes in the incident discovered that his neighbors all shared a similar story, so he went out of his way to get footage of the culprit. Apparently, the fox had the entire collection of shoes, ranging from sneakers to crocs, slippers, and clogs in all sorts of shapes and sizes from previous owners. He even caught the fox with two flip flops in its mouth! No reason has been given so far as for the theft, seeing that the fox was unavailable to provide any commentary.

Source: Swiper No Swiping!

4. Square Up

In an ever expanding world, sometimes we need things to be smaller. Japanese toy company MegaHouse decided that this means the “classics” have to become smaller too. Recently, the MegaHouse company has released what is known to be the world’s smallest Rubik’s Cube! Just 0 by 39 inches, these small aluminium toys are part of a slowly growing chain of micro manufacturing making smaller versions of objects in mass quantities. Interested in a toy? All you need is a small loan of $1,900, and you can be one of the first 500 buyers by Christmas this year!

Sources: Square Up 1, Square Up 2

5. World’s Best Tree Hugger

I am not exaggerating! On September 25, Adrienne Long from Tennessee broke the Guinness World Record for longest tree hug. Long (who has an ironic last name) stood in Heritage Park, in Chattanooga’s Brainerd neighborhood for a total duration of 10 hours and 5 minutes. Her tree of choice was a walnut tree. Long’s friend, Sarah Medley, organized small events like dances for entertainment and group meditations to facilitate Long’s persistent strike. In addition, Long fundraised money in support of her attempt with all the funds going to the local Audubon Society. All bark, and… no play!

Source: World’s Best Tree Hugger