- The Siberian town of Verkhoyansk hit a record high temperature of 100 degrees this June!!
- I’d heard of flying fish, but not flying snakes. Actually, Paradise tree snakes glide rather than fly. By spreading their rib cages and undulating they can soar from treetops to the ground. I used to think that I might be able to fly for a few seconds by running across the top of a reservoir on our farm and flapping my arms as I jumped three or four feet to the ground. I should have undulated.
- People with a gene mutation have lower levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Now researchers have studied them to both develop a new cholesterol medication and have been able to with a single shot genetically change monkeys for an apparent lifetime free of heart disease. All is too early to ask your doctor for treatment.
- We all know that the Mediterranean diet is heart healthy, but now there’s scientific evidence people on the diet of fruits, vegetables, and nuts are more verbally fluent. Lack of verbal fluency is a measure of cognition decline. People who consume six servings a day fare best in the studies.
- Water pollution is not a new phenomenon. Archeologists now believe they abandoned the beautiful 1000-year-old, pre-Columbian Mayan city of Tikal city due to toxins in their water supply. Analysis including DNA discovered traces of a variety of substances that would have turned the water undrinkable.
And here’s something interesting that I’ve known for some time. Thomas Edison may have invented the first light bulb, but a black inventor, Lewis Howard Latimer invented the filament that made it practical for everyday use. The original filament only lasted 12 hours. He sold his patent to GE. I learned that in a charming children’s book: What if there were no black people in the world? by Tamara Shiloh. There are many other inventions mentioned such as the elevator, but you won’t find them in science education texts.
Stay safe on this strange 4th of July!