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The Lonely Ballad of the Dulles Airport Mobile Lounge

The mobile lounge at Dulles Airport in action, 1960s. (Photo: Library of Congress/LC-DIG-krb-00774)If your travels ever bring you to Concourse D of Washington, D.C.'s Dulles International Airport, you...

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The 9,000-Mile Sea Journey of an Irradiated Indian Mango

Ripe mangos. (Photo: Ramnath Bhat // CC BY: 2.0)Farmers in India say the unique aroma and taste of the Alphonso mango comes from the nutrient rich, blood-red soil and the winds blowing over the...

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Police Impersonators in the UK Are Now on the Hijacking Beat

A marked Essex police car. (Photo: davebutton/CC BY 2.0)On Saturday, in Essex County, England, a group of four men put a blue flashing light on their car and pulled over a white Mercedes Sprinter van....

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Puzzlers Just Got a Little Closer to Solving Gravity Falls' Final Mystery

Six days ago, Alex Hirsch, the creator of the animated television show Gravity Falls, posted a message on Twitter.Let the games begin #FLSKHUKXQWpic.twitter.com/shSu5PCDSR— Alex Hirsch (@_AlexHirsch)...

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Wildly Beautiful Photographs of Flamingos From the Air

An aerial view of Lesser Flamingos feeding in the shallows of Lake Natron, Tanzania, leaving trails in the mud. The lake has mineral-rich waters and mud that are caustic to most other animals. For...

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Watch a Mini Volcano Simulator Produce an Electrical Storm

Volcanic eruptions can result in a series of amazing and violent natural phenomena. They can spew streams of lava, generate cloud vortexes, and blanket the sky in thick black ash. And sometimes, when...

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Over 400 Vintage Boomboxes Are Up For Sale

On the hunt for a massive boombox collection? Of course you are! Read more: https://t.co/rFUkUOFlynpic.twitter.com/YyWisqDwHE— Stoney Roads (@StoneyRoads) July 27, 2016What is believed to be one of the...

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Found: Really Stinky 340-Year-Old Cheese From a Shipwreck

Possible shipwreck cheese. (Photo: Lars Einarsson/Kalmar County Museum)Since the shipwreck of the Swedish royal ship Kronan was discovered in 1980, researchers have found thousands of items that sank...

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The World's Most Lightning-Prone Place Has the World's First Lightning Forecasts

Lightning over Lake Maracaibo. (Photo: Thechemicalengineer/CC BY-SA 3.0)For centuries, the lightning that lit up the skies above Lake Maracaibo, night after night, was a mystery. The Beacon of...

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The Lost Mushroom Masterpiece Unearthed in a Dusty Drawer

An illustration of Polyporus beatiei, from Mary Banning's The Fungi of Maryland. (Photo: vintageprintable/Public Domain)To her neighbors in 19th century Baltimore, the mycologist Mary Banning was a...

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Taxi Drivers In Ghana Skip Work To Fill In Potholes

Every day, hundreds of taxi drivers in Hohoe, Ghana drive commuters to workplaces, weekly markets, and wherever else they need to go. Over the past few months, though, a growing plague of potholes has...

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The Public Shaming of England’s First Umbrella User

Jonas Hanway walking into the rain, with—controversially—an umbrella. (Photo: Bettmann/Getty Images)In the early 1750s, an Englishman by the name of Jonas Hanway, lately returned from a trip to France,...

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We're Getting Closer to Knowing Why Bees Are Dying Off Worldwide

(Photo: Muhammad Mahdi Karim/GNU 1.2)The world bee population has been in decline for years now, and scientists have been generally puzzled over the reasons why. Insects, including bees, are essential...

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Pokémon Go Players Are Rescuing Lots Of Real Wildlife

Real and fake bats, together at last. (Photo: Angell Williams/altered by Cara Giaimo/CC BY 2.0)Late Monday evening, Olivia Case of Spencer, New York drove to her local laundromat with her iPhone and...

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The Experimental Nuclear Reactor Secretly Built Under the University of Chicago

An illustration of the first critical nuclear reaction. (Photo: Gary Sheehan/Public Domain)On December 2, 1942, the world's first nuclear reactor was fired up in a subterranean squash court. But...

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From Frogs to Immigration, How the Secret Service Kept Tabs on Peaceful Protests

(Photo: Ragesoss/CC BY-SA 2.0)A version of this story originally appeared on Muckrock.com.A 2011 FOIA request by Jason Smathers led to the release of a little over a week’s worth of the reports from...

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How Firefighters Calculate Containment as They Battle the Sand Fire

(Photo: National Wildlife Coordinating Group)A massive wildfire in California's Sand Canyon—dubbed the Sand fire—has been burning since Friday, claiming at least 38,000 acres of land and the life of...

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In 1972, Two Women Ran For President. It Didn't Go Well.

Shirley Chisholm. (Photo: Library of Congress)Here’s one way to measure progress. In 1972, there were two women who ran national campaigns to be President of the United States. Shirley Chisholm became...

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Found: Mysterious Bright Purple Blob, Floating in the Deep Sea

THE BLOB. (Photo: Ocean Exploration Trust)This is one of the best sounds you can hear when eavesdropping on scientists: “Oh, what is that?”The research team of the E/V Nautilus, a vessel of the Ocean...

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The Story of Laffing Sal, the World's Most Uncanny Animatronic Doll

Laffing Sal at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco. (Photo: Gary Stevens/CC BY 2.0)You'll know her by the trail of sobbing children.Follow the line of confused faces, and you'll find the 6-foot-tall,...

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