Sunday, November 30, 2008

Weekend Snippets - We Spend Because We Love, Avoid Hotels, Enjoy Trees While They Last, Life

Sorry for the neglect. We have been busy doing things like feasting on turkey, drinking beer, experiencing the number 9 and the letter g, driving, laziness and a variety of other things that have prevented this site from being updated in the last week. But fear not, we have nothing but bad days ahead to report on. And this weekend has brought plenty of world ending signs with it...

* Even though the world economy is crumbing around us everybody still went out and spent an average of 372.57 dollars per shopper this weekend. I am happy to say that I only spent money on food and drinks. (wapo)

* You should never stay at a luxury hotel again. (Your EIGN reporters do not have this problem)

* Brazil's amazon rain forest lost an area the size of Israel to deforestation in 2007-2008. Isreal. That's not a big place, but it's not a small place either. ( via digg)

* We may be able to create life soon. And not in that fun, old fashioned way. (sd reader)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My Bionic Eye

An artist in San Francisco wants to replace her lost eyeball with a bionic webcam. The scary part, "tech experts" (who?) say it's possible.

"Vlach, who lost her eye in a 2005 car accident, wears a realistic acrylic prosthesis, but she's issued a challenge to engineers on her blog: build an "eye cam" for her prosthesis that can dilate with changes of light and allow her to blink to control its zoom, focus, and on/off switch.

"There have been all sorts of cyborgs in science fiction for a long time, and I'm sort of a sci-fi geek," said Vlach, 35. "With the advancement of technology, I thought, 'Why not?'" (nydailynews)

Oh and more world ending news, this could lead to another reality TV show... from the perspective of her eye socket. Oh save me Jebus.

Monday, November 24, 2008

WHAT? A Church Is Encouraging Sex?? NOOOOOoooo

According to this article in yesterday's NYtimes, Reverend Ed Young, in Texas no less, encouraged his congregation to have more sex.

Mr. Young, an author, a television host and the pastor of the evangelical Fellowship Church, issued his call for a week of “congregational copulation” among married couples on Nov. 16, while pacing in front of a large bed." (nytimes)

Something does not seem right, organized religion of the evangelical kind encouraging sex of any kind? Although, in true pastor form, his quotes are genius: “'Today we’re beginning this sexperiment, seven days of sex,' he said... 'How to move from whining about the economy to whoopee!'" (again, nytimes)

How long until the Catholic church joins this band wagon? I, for one, am not amused by this "Pastor" and his sinful suggestions. EIGN is calling for yet another boycott. This time of Mr. Ed Young of Grapevine, Texas. You should be ashamed of yourself sir.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

ICE! COLD! SNOW! ... Good News Wednesday XXVIII

Considering the greater Northeastern part of the US is undergoing an early "great freeze," this article seems appropriate... We have great news for those of you that like the cold, the snow, the ice and everything else one experiences during the shit for months we're getting ready to experience for a while.

The next ice age may be a long one. And we're not talking tens of thousands of years but a "quasi-permanent colder state." The polar ice sheets could greatly expand and, well, shit could really hit the fan. (nytimes)

If you love the warmth, like both EIGN contributors do, too bad. Scientists "used climate models and other techniques to assess the chances that the world is witnessing the final stages of a 50-million-year transition from a planet with a persistent warm climate [to a cold one]." (nytimes) Awesome.

There is a grain of hope, however. It may just be that our ability to destroy our environment in the short term, with co2 and other greenhouse gases, may give us the ability to control the climate and prevent this new change. Good for us.

Stay warm out there.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Mayan River Of Blood (To Hell)

The AP, via washpost, followed University of Yucatan archaeologist Guillermo de Anda through some treacherous jungles, caves and underground lakes, in pursuit of the Mayans' "buried highway through hell."

"Legend says the afterlife for ancient Mayas was a terrifying obstacle course in which the dead had to traverse rivers of blood, and chambers full of sharp knives, bats and jaguars." And now de Anda says "a series of caves he has explored may be the place where the Maya actually tried to depict this highway through hell." (ap)

Caves are largely believed to have been sacred to the Mayans, the ancient Central American civilization that was a central tenant in the formation of this very web site. (See the countdown to December 21, 2012, the end of the Mayan calendar, and perhaps, the end of the world to the right.)
The network of underground chambers, roads and temples beneath farmland and jungle on the Yucatan peninsula suggests the Maya fashioned them to mimic the journey to the underworld, or Xibalba, described in ancient mythological texts such as the Popol Vuh.

"It was the place of fear, the place of cold, the place of danger, of the abyss," said University of Yucatan archaeologist Guillermo de Anda. (ap)

The Mayans were really a messed up people. I don't know if this story lends more or less credence to their belief that everything ends when their calendar does. But if they are right, rivers of blood, jaguars, and caves to hell sound pretty scary. I wonder what it will feel like to trudge through them in January of 2013.

Friday, November 14, 2008

More Plastic In The Ocean...

First it was NPR. Now it's PBS.

Once again we break the stories first. Well, actually, someone else breaks a story and then we put it on here and then the mainstream media picks up on it and we claim to have broken the story first. I am clearly ignoring the fact that EIGN doesn't actually do any "reporting."

Back on July 11th EIGN reported about how the Pacific ocean is filling up with trash. Last night the News Hour With Jim Lehrer aired a substantive ten minute segment about the same thing.
*Their conclusion: This is probably a bad thing, but we don't know for sure, however this could be the start of the end of the world. Okay, so they didn't use that phrase exactly, but they might of well have.
*Our conclusion: We dump so much freaking plastic into the ocean that from now on when I'm enjoying my favorite sushi I will have to worry about being poisoned by plastics and not mercury. And I love my sushi. Clearly there is always something to worry about when it comes to raw fish.

So take that PBS. Some blog about the coming end of the world beat YOU to a story. I fully expect All Things Considered will air a piece about this in February.

Full clip of the television segment can be found here.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

We Can See Extra-Solar Planets!

Holy crap. Apparently we can now SEE planets outside our own solar system.

"Two teams of astronomers made stunning claims today that they have separately obtained images of planets orbiting two different stars in our galaxy." (wapo)

Fox News has pictures.

I have reservations.

Nevermind, We're All Getting Fatter

Looks like I was wrong yesterday. We are all getting fatter. And better yet, it may be contagious.
Obesity could be socially contagious, according to new research by two of Britain's leading economists. Professor David Blanchflower, who sits on the Bank of England's monetary policy committee, and Professor Andrew Oswald, an expert on the economics of wellbeing, claim that the nation's expanding waistline could be down to people subconsciously trying to 'keep up with the weight of the Joneses'.
After analysing obesity data from the 50s to the present, the pair conclude that obesity may be transmitted across society in a way that is similar to the progress of a virus. (
Apparently the lemming like desire we all have to be like everyone else is causing us to put on pounds. How very, very sad for mankind. So, I guess, to all you overweight individuals out there. STOP EATING. I don't want to get any heavier than I already am.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Good News Wednesday XXVII: Green Is Good

Great news for those of you surrounded by trees. As if being surrounded by trees was not a great thing in itself. Your kids (or you, dear reader, if you are a kid) have less chance of becoming fat. Via or favorite science site,
Childhood obesity can lead to type 2 diabetes, asthma, hypertension, sleep apnea and emotional distress. Obese children and youth are likely to be obese as adults, experience more cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and stroke and incur higher healthcare costs. In an article published in the December 2008 issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, researchers report that children living in inner city neighborhoods with higher "greenness" experienced lower weight gains compared to those in areas with less green space. (

Now if we could only convince those kids to put down their Call of Duty IV or Halo 15 or Rock Band and GO OUTSIDE. (and while there, please remember to look up more)
Happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Save Our Economy or Ending World Hunger? Why Not Both!

In Americas never ending greed, our government is working on this 700 billion dollar bailout of the fat cats on wall street and main street and the back streets. Okay, so this is probably a good idea, or so those ivy league princeton liberal economists and such tell me. And even I think it's probably a good idea, but then I read things like this: 4% on the bailout funds could end world hunger.

From (via digg, I think):
The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) stated that it would only take $30 billion a year to launch the necessary agricultural programs to completely solve global food insecurity.
$30 billion sounds like a lot of money, but considering we've just bailed out Wall Street to the tune of nearly a trillion, it's trifling. After I did a little digging, all I could think was...really? $30 billion is all we need to end world hunger? That's it? I thought such a major goal would require some unreachable, vast sum.

This number is only 4 freaking percent of the wall street bailout package. This is unbelievable. You should write/call/email/stalk your congressperson and ask them why they can't take 4 percent of the liberal bailout package money and feed the world. Check out the article for a bunch more interesting facts and statistics.

[image via flickr user mappix]

Monday, November 10, 2008

One Theory For The End Of The Mayans

The usatoday reported yesterday that it is possible an environmental disaster, or disasters, caused the downfall of the Mayan civilization.
"These models suggest that as ecosystems were destroyed by mismanagement or were transformed by global climatic shifts, the depletion of agricultural and wild foods eventually contributed to the failure of the Maya sociopolitical system," writes environmental archaeologist Kitty Emery of the Florida Museum of Natural History in the current Human Ecology journal. (

While this may not be news you really care about, this blog was, in part, created due to conversations and fascinations with the Mayan civilization. After all, just look at the countdown on the side of this page. So, how long until the environment causes the downfall of our civilization?

Friday, November 7, 2008

You Can't Say Fuck on Television

Or so says the supreme court, even though I don't think they've made their official ruling yet. (We all know what their decision will be).
"Circumlocutions like "the F-word" and "the S-word" sufficed as the court considered the year's highest-profile free-speech controversy. All signs now point to a tight decision over whether broadcasters can be fined for allowing use of so-called 'fleeting expletives,' which are swear words used in passing." (

The government's best argument comes directly from the mouth of Solicitor General Gregory Garre: "Loosening indecency standards, Garre warned ominously, could lead to 'Big Bird dropping the F-bomb on Sesame Street.'" Now that I'd like to see.

So I guess this was sort of bad, then:

Thanks to eign reader, and friend, jg3 for the story. And thanks to chase utley for the world series.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Your Cellphone Could Give You A Rash

As if all of the db's using cellphones everywhere was not a cancer on society, at least it's now going to be a cancer to the user as well. Well, if you consider a rash a cancer. All of those other mobile phone|cancer links have yet to be proven.
But, according to the, "Mobile phone users warned of new skin disorder caused by nickel on casing."

[image via flickr user portablematthew]

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Those Crazy Russians....Take That Obama!

And so it begins again...
"President Dmitri A. Medvedev of Russia greeted his future American counterpart, Sen. Barack Obama, with bristling language on Wednesday, promising to place short-range missiles on Russia’s Western border if Washington proceeds with its planned missile defense systems in Eastern Europe." (nytimes)


Anybody But Bush - Good News Wednesday XXVII

GREAT NEWS!!! A new president was elected yesterday. Bush will soon be gone!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Wait, People Are Actually Voting?

Wow. Everyone is already experiencing or expected to experience long lines today. Two sure sign the world is coming to an end... democrats may control the house, senate and white house, and people are actually voting. Run for your lives!

[Update 1:36pm] - All these idiots that are "voting" apparently are too busy congratulating themselves to pay attention to the road. According to the Journal of American Medical Association (via election day has more car accidents than any other day.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Who Likes Sewage In Their Drinking Water?

Back in april we wrote about the deterioration of water and sewer infrastructure in various places around the country. This time it's Pennsylvania and New Jersey that are on the brink of total failure. Via (we here at EIGN have been reading it a lot in the last few weeks) the authors find numerous examples that point to further problems if something isn't done soon.

To make matters worse, "'The more we put off these upgrades, the more expensive it's going to become,' said Patty Elkis of the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission." (

[image courtesy of me]