In Case You Missed It… Assorted Oddities from Around the Web

In Case You Missed It… Assorted Oddities from Around the Web

Do it for Denmark

Danish travel agency Spies Travel made a plea aimed at curbing Denmark’s falling birth rate by encouraging couples to travel. The ad claims that Danes have 46% more sex while on holiday, and 10% of Danish children are conceived while their parents are vacationing abroad. A therapist in the ad says travel, “releases endorphins…and creates a desire for sex.”

The ad also announces a contest wherein couples who book their travel using Spies “Ovulation Discount” and then successfully conceive while abroad will win a “3-year supply of baby stuff” and a family-oriented vacation. Gay couples and others whose “chance of conceiving isn’t so high” are also encouraged to enter, since “the fun is in the participation”.

Comments on the ad’s YouTube post include those from several male viewers selflessly volunteering their services to reverse the Danish birth-dearth.

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Women with No Makeup Accidently Try to Adopt Polar Bears

Women attempting to make a £3 donation to Cancer Research UK via smartphone last week accidently submitted requests to adopt polar bears. The mistakes happened when their phones’ autocorrect changed the word “beat” to “bear”. Their messages then went to the Worldwide Wildlife Fund.

The wayward texts were intended to go to the #nomakeupselfie program, a Facebook campaign in which women post photos of themselves with no makeup, and text a £3 donation. The program has raised £8 million to-date.

The WWF is returning any unintended donations. Said a spokesman, “We wish Cancer Research UK every success in their campaign and their goals. Polar bear selfies are harder to come by, though, as far as we are aware, none wear make-up.”

Wooly Mammoth Birth Defects Contributed to Their Extinction

Last Tuesday, Jelle Reumer of the Rotterdam Museum of Natural History released the results of a study showing that 33.3% of North Sea wooly mammoth infants were born with cervical ribs. A cervical rib is a rib attached to a neck vertebrae. The paper, published in the open access journal PeerJ, notes that while the ribs themselves are relatively harmless, they’re “often associated with inbreeding and adverse environmental conditions during pregnancy.” The 33.3 number is ten times the same instance in modern elephants – the closest living descendant of the wooly mammoth.

Researchers included disease, famine, and cold as the “adverse environmental conditions”, and suggested mammoth inbreeding might have resulted from population reductions caused by hunting by late Pleistocene man.

An Animatronic Stripper on Display in New York

Artist Jordan Wolfson’s latest exhibit at the David Zwirner Art Gallery in New York City includes an animatronic stripper. Capable of disturbingly life-like motion, the female figure is supported before a mirror by a chrome pole that provides vertical movement. Facial recognition software allows it to track viewers as they enter the gallery and move about the room. A witch-like mask, fluttering fingers, and black smudges on the figure’s skin and diaphanous dress augment its creepy presence.

The Zwirner Gallery website credits Wolfson with creating “thought-provoking works in a wide range of media, including video, sculpture, installation, photography, and performance. He pulls intuitively from the world of advertising, the Internet, and the technology industries to produce ambitious and enigmatic narratives.” The site says the stripper “…intensifies the importance of the gaze”.

The artist collaborated on the figure with Spectral Motion, a Glendale, CA-based provider of creature effects, prosthetics, and animatronics to the motion-picture industry.

The exhibit is on display through April 19th.

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