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Watch These Microscopic Organisms Feast on a Dead Worm

 Ah death. Here are a few clips of a feeding frenzy occurring around a dead worm. Microorganisms included in this video: coleps ciliates, paramecium, small unknown ciliates, and a lone spirostomum. One...

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Where the Heroes of Your Favorite Fairy Tales Live

Fairy tales and nursery rhymes are some of the most world's powerful stories. They have survived through the ages, retold and repurposed, but always leaving an impression in the memories of our...

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Watch This Art Installation Made With Moving Rocket Fuel

 In the 1960s NASA invented a new liquid called ferrofluid to be used as rocket fuel for spaceships. As this video suggests, its purpose has shifted quite fluidly into other fields.In fact, ferrofluid...

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London Is Still Paying Rent to the Queen on a Property Leased in 1211

Earlier this October, at a ceremony at the Royal Courts of Justice, London paid its rent to the Queen. The ceremony proceeded much as it had for the past eight centuries. The city handed over a knife,...

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The Surprising Success of Halloween Pop-Up Stores

A version of this post originally appeared on Tedium, a twice-weekly newsletter that hunts for the end of the long tail.“I didn’t invent temporary sales. But I feel like I invented temporary...

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Digging Through the Archives of Scarfolk, the Internet's Creepiest Fake Town

Let's take a moment to explain the picture above. In 1978, the town of Scarfolk, in northwest England, cut its police budget in half. This drastic measure was followed by a wave of violent crime. To...

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The 1942 Ghost Blimp That Bewildered a California Town

On August 16,1942 something very strange happened in Daly City, California, a quiet suburb near San Francisco. Around 11:30 a.m. a sagging Navy blimp descended from the sky and headed for Bellevue...

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The Persistent Problem of Trying to Rig Elections with Dead People

Over the weekend, Trump advisor Rudy Giuliani made headlines after resuscitating an old political stereotype. "Dead people generally vote for Democrats rather than Republicans," he told CNN's Jake...

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Only the Vatican Has More Christian Relics Than Pittsburgh

Troy Hill, population 3,000, is situated on a small plateau overlooking Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It’s a historically German, but quintessentially Pittsburghian, neighborhood characterized by cozy row...

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The Strangely Glamorous World of a 1980s Ronald McDonald

Author, performer, and educator Tim Arem has inhabited one of the most famous clown personas in the world. But he was one of many.Working in and around L.A., Arem was able to not only able to perform...

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Dial-a-Ghost on Thomas Edison's Least Successful Invention: the Spirit Phone

Thomas Edison seated in his laboratory, c. 1904. (Photo: Library of Congress/LC-USZ62-55339)In the late 1920s, not long before his death, Thomas Edison reportedly gathered with other scientists in a...

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Let's Choose a New Name for 'Indian Summer'

In mid-October in 2016, the trees might be near peak fall foliage, but the temperatures are not dropping. In fact, the high in New York City is forecasted to top 80 degrees. In North America, since at...

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The 1800s Medical Device That Promised Cures by Repeatedly Stabbing Patients

In 1847, German inventor Carl Baunscheidt was sitting in his room in pain, his hand aching from arthritis. He was swatting at hungry mosquitos until he finally gave up and allowed one to bite his hand....

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Gävle Goat Copycat Goes Up In Iceland

The Gävle Goat is one of the most doomed goats of all time. Every year since 1966, the residents of Gävle, Sweden have built an enormous straw goat in the town square. And almost every year since 1966,...

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Watch This Strange-Looking Monkey Slug Take Over a Mailbox

Behold, the mottled brown, menacing monkey slug. During the fall months, this carpeted creature writhes, wriggles, and inches across apple trees, birches, chestnut, hickories, oaks, and… mailboxes.In...

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This Guy Allegedly Tried To Steal a Venetian Blind By Stuffing It Into His Coat

Stuffing things in one's coat is a classic and time-honored method of theft, often perpetrated by children stealing gum and baseball cards. But have a look at this gentleman, who police in Great...

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Why UFO Conspiracists Have So Many Opinions About 'Angel Hair’

It was 1999, and the middle of the week in the sparsely populated desert state of Western Australia, when a man known only as Peter made a phone call to Australian UFO Registry. He was alarmed—after...

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Inside the Perplexing 'Tom and Becky' Contest in Mark Twain's Hometown

Hannibal, Missouri, a town of 18,000 on the banks of the Mississippi River, has one claim to fame—it’s Mark Twain’s birthplace—and claim that fame it does. On the drive from St. Louis, billboards...

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Here Are Some of the World's Most Delightful 'Pumpkins'

(Photo: Public Domain)Although Atlas Obscura is an established authority on haunted houses, spooky graveyards, and abandoned asylums, we also have a long-running fondness for Halloween’s rounder and...

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Stolen Artifacts! Drunk Teens! And More True Tales of Florida's First State...

Vernon Lamme didn't quite seem the type to be an archaeologist. With his prominent chin and substantial waist, he was neither a swashbuckling, world-traveling Indiana Jones nor a meticulous,...

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