Tuesday, March 11, 2008

So SaRadar

Things that have interested me recently:

1. According to DCist, Amsterdam Falafel in Adams Morgan now accepts Euros! This is strange and interesting to me. It's incredibly strange that a falafel join in D.C. accepts Euros, considering they aren't even accepted in all the countries of the EU! It's interesting though, economically. I wonder how many people they can scam into buying their falafels in Euros, in turn running away with the (currently excellent) exchange rate? At any rate, it's an appealing way to get rid of foreign currency that you forgot to spend in duty free or buying booze on the plane over international waters.

p.s. Billy's Antiques on East Houston Street in Manhattan accepts Euros, Canadian Dollars, Great British Pounds, and regular old U.S. dollars.

2. The Vatican lists seven new deadly sins, here and here. The new deadly sins include: 'bioethical' violations (such as birth control), 'morally dubious' experiments (such as stem cell research), drug abuse, polluting the environment, contributing to widening divide between rich and poor, excessive wealth, and creating poverty. In addition to the regular, traditional seven deadly sins (pride, envy, gluttony, lust, anger, greed and sloth), we probably all commit at least one of them regularly. Our souls are all doomed. Bishop Gianfranco Girotti, head of the Apostolic Penitentiary, the Vatican body which oversees confessions and plenary indulgences, said that

“You offend God not only by stealing, blaspheming or coveting your neighbor’s wife, but also by ruining the environment, carrying out morally debatable scientific experiments, or allowing genetic manipulations which alter DNA or compromise embryos.”

Oh really? That offends God? Having just finished reading The God Delusion, I can only wonder what Dawkins has to say about all this. I'm guessing a forum debate will likely ensue.

3. University of California at Berkeley's Research on Color and Language would probably interest Wittgenstein. Researcher Paul Kay aims to determine if babies, who have not yet developed language skills, process color recognition using the left of right hemisphere of their brains. It has been proven that adults use the left, but this is also the hemisphere most of us use to process language. It seems Kay is essentially trying to answer a Euthyphronic question scientists and philosophers have been toying with for years: 'Is something red because we say it is, or do we say it's red because it actually is?' I think speculations about color, perception, etc. in ourselves in relation to other people is fascinating.

4. LAist and Satan's Ice Cream Truck. Listen to the freaky sound clip.

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