Monday, February 28, 2011

Who You Callin' "Thunder Thighs," Skinny?

“Hey Thunder-thighs!” yelled the predator Deinonychus to the Brontomerus.

But the six-ton Brontomerus didn't get hurt feelings, she just kicked the Deinonychus, a relative of the famous Velociraptor, halfway to Gondwana. Then she ambled away up a steep hill, where skinny-legged dinos didn't have the strength and stamina to follow.

The name Brontomerus literally means “thunder thighs” in Greek. Paleontologists think the newly discovered dinosaur may have used those massive leg muscles to deliver powerful kicks and climb rough terrain.

(BLOG: Grandmother of All Sauropods Unearthed; just fyeieio)

"When we recognized the weird shape of the hip, we wondered what its significance might be, but we concluded that kicking was the most likely,” said Mike Taylor of University College London in a press release by the school.

“The kick would probably have been used when two males fought over a female, but given that the mechanics were all in place it would be bizarre if it wasn't also used in predator defense,” Taylor said.

Brontomerus probably had larger thigh muscles than any other sauropod, relative to it's size. That kind of power would allow Brontomerus to be the 4x4 of dinosaurs, climbing steep hills and rough terrain with ease.

“It's possible that Brontomerus mcintoshi was more athletic than most other sauropods,” said Matt Wedel of Western University of Heath Sciences in a University College London press release.

“It is well established that far from being swamp-bound hippo-like animals, sauropods preferred drier, upland areas; so perhaps Brontomerus lived in rough, hilly terrain and the powerful leg muscles were a sort of dinosaur four-wheel drive," Wedel said.

A team of scientists from the United States and United Kingdom, recently described Brontomerus mcintoshi in the journal Acta Paleontologica Polonica.

In the article they describe the skeletal features that make Brontomerus so unique. The ilium, or hip bone, is very large for a dino its size. The muscle attachments on the shoulder blades seem to indicate the sauropod had massive front legs too.

Brontomerus is an entirely new genus of dinosaur, and paleontologists were lucky to find it. Researchers from the Sam Noble Museum rescued the bones from a looted quarry in Eastern Utah. The find included the remains of two individuals, an adult and a juvenile, possibly a mother and child duo, the researchers speculated.

The adult would have tipped the scales at 6 tons and measuring 45 feet in length. That's about the bulk of a large elephant, with a neck and tail stretching out longer than any living python. The juvenile was about the weight of a pony, 440 pounds, and 15 feet long.
There's jolly lots more at the link, here.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The World of "Wooooo": Quantum Bio Energetics InterQuackional

The indefatigable PZ Myers, that mean, old biology professor and spirit debunker from the University of Minnesota, Morris, is at it again, causing distress to the credulous, focusing on
Many clients, adolescent, adult and child, (who) have reported healings from Cancers, Mental illnesses, Depression, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Physical injuries, a variety of Disabilities including Cerebral Palsy, ASD (Autism), and many other Serious Afflictions.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A New Title From Jon Lajoie: Very Super Famous

This picked up over EIGHTY THOUSAND hits in under 24 hours. Quite NSFW!
This is a very talented cat,,,

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Johnny McEntee, UCONN's Trick-Shot Quarterback

Practically EVERY boy and a lotta girls have tossed a football--that iconic, ironic oblate spheroid of gridiron legend and lore--around. So just about anybody ought to be able to relate to the really quite astonishing skill this young fella demonstrates. As some wag on FB said, Johnny Mac's BIGGEST trick, however, was convincing folks that UCONN was a "Football" school.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Blow Up Their Fucking Heads!

My pal (and late-week B'day celebrant), the Santa Fe satirist par excellence, Jim Terr, sent me this with the instructions: "Cut and paste this on any Rightard "wall" on Facebook, then step back and watch the clowns' heads explode."

A noble act, indeed!

""The Tea Party is a diverse group of patriotic Americans and their opinions should be taken seriously. They are led almost exclusively by AynRandians born on 3rd base who think they hit a triple. Their numbers include:
Civil War Reenactors, middle school dropouts, racists, xenophobes, birthers, klan members, rednecks, war mongers, seniors on 'social' security who hate 'socialism', closeted homophobes, Sean Hanninazis, gun enthousiasts, White Separatists, paranoid home-schoolers, Limbaugh dittoheads, Minute Men, backwoods yokels, bible thumpers who like to watch lesbian bondage, flat earthers, Ruby Ridgers, secessionists, greedy pricks, survivalists, Faux News shit kickers, Neofascists, Creationists, Tongues Chanters, Neocons, Glenn Beck bots, John Birchers, snake handlers, red baiters, and illiterate goobers who think Jesus rode on the back of a triceratops.""

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Mother Nature Twitches, and Cities Vanish

Or in this case, a huge cargo facility on the Amazon River at the port of Manaus, in October, 2010. A thing like this could really complicate your day, nest paw?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

PZ Myers & JT Eberhart Regard The Attractive Xian Myths

Did you know about "SkeptiCon?" I didn't and I should have had an engraved invite.
During Skepticon III, speaker/biologist/author of Pharyngula, PZ Myers, speaks with a protester handing out Ray Comfort's version of Origin of the Species. Co-founder of Skepticon/campus organizer & high school specialist for Secular Student Alliance, JT Eberhard, speaks with a Christian, attempting to extract from her reasonable evidence for believing in the Bible and god.
Good luck widdat, you betcha!

Extended 28 minute cut available HERE.