ISIS: A moniker no more

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If getting rid of ISIS were only that easy.

With the emergence of the Islamic State terror group, the World Meteorological Organization has removed the name from the official hurricane list, according to USA Today.

hurricane

Hurricane Iselle (left) is followed by Hurricane Julio as they approach Hawaii from the east in early August 2014. Photo: NASA/Jeff Schmaltz/LANCE/EOSDIS Rapid Response via Getty Images

Isis, an ancient Egyptian goddess, was on the list of names for 2016 for storms to form in the eastern Pacific. Its replacement? Ivette.

Names on the hurricane lists are recycled every six years, unless a storm causes enough damage that its name is retired, such as in the recent case of Odile, which walloped Mexico in September, killing 11 and causing in excess of $1 billion in damage.

 

 

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A taxing read, for sure

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If you haven’t crunched enough numbers in the run-up to the April 15 tax deadline, here’s one more: 74,608.

That’s the number of pages in the federal tax code, according to Wolters Kluwer, CCH, an Illinois-based provider of tax, accounting and audit information that has analyzed the law for more than a century.

The initial tax code, in 1913, was a modest 400 pages. Most of its growth — from 26,300 pages in 1984 to its present size — has occurred in the past 30 years. From 2010, when Obamacare was passed, to 2014, the code swelled by nearly 3,000 pages.

If it continues to grow at the same pace, it is expected to top 100,000 pages in 2050.

taxlaw

 

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Catch of the day?

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A Florida bobcat snags a rare catch from the waters off the beach of Sebastian Inlet State Park. Photo: John Bailey via FWC logo Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

A Florida bobcat snags a rare catch from the waters off the beach of Sebastian Inlet State Park.
Photo: John Bailey via
Florida Fish and Wildlife
Conservation Commission

In the age of Photoshop, rare sights caught on camera, like a photo showing a bobcat snagging a shark from the surf, are even harder to believe. So when beachgoer John Bailey shared the image with West Palm Beach, Fla., NBC affiliate WPTV, many observers were dubious. Is it real?

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USPS not well versed in Angelou’s writings

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Oprah Winfrey speaks during the dedication ceremony for the Maya Angelou Forever stamp in Washington, April 7, 2015. Photo: Reuters

Oprah Winfrey speaks during the dedication ceremony for the Maya Angelou Forever stamp in Washington, April 7, 2015. Photo: Reuters

When Martin Luther King Jr. was memorialized with a 30-foot granite statue in Washington, D.C., acclaimed writer and civil rights figure Maya Angelou took exception to an inscription reading “I was a drum major for justice, peace and righteousness.” The truncated version of a longer King quote made the civil rights leader “look like an arrogant twit,” Angelou complained.

It ought to have been an admonition to be more diligent when quoting public figures for the benefit of posterity.

The United States Postal Service, it would seem, didn’t heed the lesson.

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You want fries with that wedding cake?

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 Joel Burger and Ashley King get a special message from a New York public relations firm representing Burger King..

Joel Burger and Ashley King get a special message from a New York public relations firm representing Burger King. Photo: AP

Joel Burger and Ashley King have been linked to the ubiquitous fast food chain of the same names since being teased for the similarity in fifth grade. They stuck together as friends and eventually as a couple, embracing the connection to the extent that tho photo they posed for to announce their engagement was taken at a Burger King restaurant, the The State Journal-Register of Springfield, Ill., reports.

Now the fast food giant wants to honor that connection.

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Watch those rays

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All-inclusive visits to sunny shorelines are often cheap, but researchers warn they could be costly in the long run for aging adults.

beach

Slather on that sunscreen. According to U.K. researchers, getting sunburned just once every two years can triple a person’s risk of getting skin cancer. Photo: Getty Images

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Meet Sabina

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She can bring you a Coke or retrieve some Advil if you have a splitting headache and don’t want to move.

She’s a robot.

Sabina is bilingual. She can react to commands in English or Spanish.

Sabina is bilingual. She can react to commands in English or Spanish. Photo: National Institute of Astrophysics, Optics and Electronics in Mexico

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Dubai, or Mars?

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Under an orange haze caused by a huge sandstorm, the United Arab Emirates’ most populous city could have been mistaken for the Red Planet on Thursday.

Medical masks provide protection for tourists as they walk along a street in Dubai amid a sandstorm. (Photo: Marwan Naamani, AFP/Getty Images)

Medical masks provide protection for tourists as they walk along a street in Dubai.
Photo: Marwan Naamani, AFP/Getty Images

A Dubai metro train navigates through the haze. Photo: Photo: Marwan Naamani, AFP/Getty Images

A metro train disappears into the dust. Photo: Marwan Naamani, AFP/Getty Images

Migrant laborers shield themselves from the sand as they work at a construction site. Photo: Adam Schreck, AP

Migrant laborers shield themselves from the sand as they work at a construction site. Photo: Adam Schreck, AP

The sandstorm could last until the weekend, BBC reports.

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Irish newspapers catch Biden in ‘clanger’

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Joe Biden greets Prime Minister Enda Kenny of Ireland and his wife, Fionnuala, at the Naval Observatory, the vice presidential residence.

Joe Biden greets Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny and his wife, Fionnuala, at the Naval Observatory, the vice presidential residence. Biden accidentally called the Irish first lady “Fiona,” according to the Irish Times. Photo: Getty

It may sound innocent to our ears, but it had Irish eyes frowning.

As the vice president of the United States welcomed the Irish prime minister and his wife to breakfast in Washington, he ended up with egg on his face, according to newspapers in the Republic and the North.

What did Joe Biden say? … Continue reading

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Liberals happier than conservatives, scientific study finds

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Conservatives might like to talk about how happy they are, but in fact liberals “more frequently used positive emotional language in their speech and smiled more intensely and genuinely in photographs,” a study published in Science has found. Continue reading

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