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Sound Smart at a February Party
United Kingdom jails apparently have their own radio station called National Prison Radio, commonly referred to as NPR. That alone, should be a magnificent Sound Smart factoid. But it gets better. The station, which has a captive audience of 84,000 inmates, will play their requests, and it compiled a list of the most popular artists. It turns out the prisoners have excellent tastes. The number-one artist was Tupac. Although the rapper “died” in 1996 (exaggerated wink), he beat out artists like Rihanna, Drake and Lil’ Wayne. And yes, Notorious B.I.G. was on the list. He placed ninth.
(nu-di-uhs-TUR-shuhn) is an actual word in the English language that means “of the day before yesterday.” You can also just say two days ago, but that doesn’t sound as cool.
Slippery When Wet
Have you ever wondered why your fingers and toes get all wrinkly after spending too much time in the bathtub or the swimming pool? Well, scientists now know why. Recent research shows it’s because of an evolutionary trait that allows humans to have a better grasp on wet objects. The wrinkles appear because of vasoconstriction, which occurs when blood vessels constrict beneath the skin, creating a consistent pattern that allows “water to sluice away.” Researchers compared the phenomenon to treads on a tire. Back in the day, we probably used this feature for gathering soggy vegetation or food from ponds and streams, and it also helped our feet get better footing in the rain.
You’re So Vein
The ancient Romans believed that the fourth finger of the left hand contained a vein that ran straight to heart. They called the vein the “vena amoris,” which means the “vein of love.” While the theory is incorrect—all fingers have a similar vein structure—many historians consider this belief explains why people in Western cultures wear their wedding bands on that finger.
Reality TV on Mars
Did you grow up idolizing Marvin the Martian? Probably not, but now you have a chance to live on his home planet—and be on reality TV. Mars One, a Dutch-based non-governmental organization, wants to send human colonists to live on Mars. The listed criteria that travelers must have are: resiliency, adaptability, curiosity, ability to trust and creativity/resourcefulness. To make the story even more bizarre, the contestants are picked by other Earthlings, via reality TV. Viewers will watch the show and determine who they think is suitable for becoming one of the first humans on Mars. If you’re interested, the application process begins this year for a launch set for 2023. Also, you have to be really sure you want to go—since there is no return flight scheduled, due to funding.
“PANDAS is an acronym for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal infections.” [See Fortune52: Marianne Russo: Founder, The Coffee Klatch]