Why do we tickle?

first_imgConsidered by some to be affectionate horseplay and by others a fairly sinister form of sexual harassment, tickling has long fascinated great thinkers as serious as Plato to Darwin. Gargalesis, as tickling is scientifically known, is actually a highly evolved social behaviour since it evokes giggling only in humans and some primates. Our squeamish reaction to tickling is most likely a defence mechanism, enabling us to protect vital parts of the body. Why the armpit is so particularly sensitive to tickling is anybody’s guess. However, as a social mechanism, tickling is a vital component of parent-child bonding, and, in a slightly more bizarre way, early sibling relationships. But if you thought tickling was all good childish fun, think again. Acarophiliacs, tickle fetishists, are hiding only a couple of mouse clicks away. The Tickle Media Foundation, the largest online tickling forum, has over 50,000 members. There you can chat to like-minded ticklaholics and even share tickling porn. It is the strange pleasure/pain component of tickling which makes it so irresistible to vicious five-year olds and dominatrices alike, since both ‘touch’ and ‘pain’ nerve fibres carry the sensation to the cortex. An element of surprise is required, which accounts for the fact that you cannot tickle yourself. Moreover, it’s thought that a perceived lack of any threat is also necessary for the effect, which is why small children will respond with fright rather than laughter if tickled by someone whom they don’t know.Interestingly, you don’t have to be touched to feel the sensation of being tickled. Watch how an especially ticklish pal will continue to writhe even after the tickling has stopped, in expectation of another attack. No one knows why some people are more ticklish than others, but one thing is certain: everybody is ticklish. Some may be prepared to take their secret weakness to the grave but, sooner or later, if you’re persistent, you’ll find the magic spot. Armed with this invaluable knowledge you should be able to get whatever you like: lecture notes, library books, drinks, sexual favours. Just be on your guard against a return attack.By Hannah Carlinlast_img read more

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VIRUS TODAY: US numbers fall but new strains cause concern

first_imgCoronavirus deaths and cases in the U.S. have dropped markedly over the past couple of weeks but are still running at alarmingly high levels. And the effort to snuff out COVID-19 is becoming an ever more urgent race between the vaccine and the mutating virus. Deaths are running at an average of just under 3,100 a day, down from more than 3,350 less than two weeks ago. New cases are averaging about 170,000 a day, after peaking at around 250,000. The country’s top infectious-disease expert says the improvements appear to be the result of a natural plateau after the holiday surge — not the effect of the vaccine. He urges continued vigilance.last_img

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SMEAC to host Earth Week events

first_imgThe Saint Mary’s Environmental Action Coalition (SMEAC) will be hosting a series of events and projects celebrating Earth Week, beginning today, in honor of environmental activism.“We have been planning Earth Week for quite a few months now and have worked really hard to put together some great events and activities,” SMEAC board member Ellen Huelsmann said. “Our goal is to make the environment fun and I’m really looking forward to all the great stuff we have planned.”The week’s events begin tonight at 5 p.m. with kickball and tie-dying on Library Green. “It’s a way for us to get people outside and enjoying the warm weather,” SMEAC head of public relations Jamie Thordsen said.Participants are allowed to bring their own items to tie-dye.“People have brought socks, jackets and even sports bras,” she said. On Tuesday, students can sign a pledge to care for a plant from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Student Center, and on Wednesday, SMEAC will organize the annual “Weight your Waste” event, which measures how much food students waste in the dining hall.“We simply take all the food and liquids left on the trays when students go to place them on the tray belt and put them in big containers,” Thordsen said.The highlight for SMEAC during the week will be Thursday’s Earth Day Student Panel. They have planned for each member to speak on a topic related to raise awareness about the environment.Huelsmann, who will be talking about “The Importance of Biodiversity,” will be one of nine speakers on the panel. Topics that will be discussed include “Business Going Green,” “Your Carbon Footprint” and “Go Green by Eating Green.”“This panel is simply [about] the importance of environment and how we all have a responsibility as members of this planet to protect and preserve it in any way we can,” Huelsmann said.On Friday, SMEAC is organizing an invasive species clean up in the Saint Mary’s Nature Area to help eradicate garlic mustard plants.SMEAC will also be teaming up with the dining hall staff to help limit environmental impact. Trays and straws will be unavailable all week in order to limit waste, and students can bring water bottles with them into the dining hall.“We really want the students to be able to participate in our celebration of the Earth and we are hoping that they get a lot out of everything we have planned,” Huelsmann said.last_img read more

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Fish in the Dark’s Rosie Perez Will Leave The View

first_imgRosie Perez, who is currently appearing in Fish in the Dark on Broadway, will leave her co-hosting stint of The View. According to Variety, the Oscar nominee will finish out the season, which is set to end on August 6. Rumors of Perez’s departure surfaced in January, when she went on hiatus to focus on rehearsals for Larry David’s play.In a memo to the ABC show’s staff, executive producer Bill Wolff wrote that Perez was leaving to “pursue full time her love for acting.” In addition to Fish in the Dark, which concludes its run at the Cort Theatre on August 1, Perez has appeared on Broadway in The Ritz, Reckless and Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune. She received an Oscar nod for her performance in Fearless.Perez joined The View in September 2014, joining incumbent and fellow Broadway alum Whoopi Goldberg, The View vet Rosie O’Donnell (who has since left) and Nicolle Wallace. Raven-Symoné, who starred on Broadway in Sister Act, joined the panel as a permanent co-host in June, after guest-hosting multiple times. Related Shows View Comments Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 1, 2015 Fish in the Darklast_img read more

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Center pivot maintenance

first_imgWith winter just around the corner, now is a good time to winterize and perform some preventive maintenance on center pivot irrigation systems.Irrigation system maintenance during the winter months is very important because it can ensure a system’s longevity, and regular maintenance can also potentially reduce the risk of experiencing downtime at critical crop stages during the next growing season.University of Georgia Cooperative Extension recommends checking the following when performing winter maintenance on center pivots:Conduct a pivot uniformity “catch can” testPrior to shutting the system down for the year, perform a “catch-can” uniformity test to verify that the system is applying water uniformly. Important things to check for when doing a uniformity test include leaks, missing or malfunctioning sprinklers, and damaged pipes. If the system has poor uniformity, it would be wise to apply for cost-share assistance through the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Environmental Quality Incentives Program for a new sprinkler package.When performing a catch-can test, it is also important to check end gun settings. Minimal or excessive amounts of water application on the end gun area is a sure sign of improper settings, worn or sticking end gun brake kits, a worn booster pump or a blown-out end gun orifice. If correct end gun arc settings are not available from the installation package, contact the dealer for the correct setting. All pivots are not the same on the end, and many require special settings.Drain the irrigation system and check panel boxesOnce you have conducted a uniformity test and are certain you will not be using your irrigation system until the next growing season, the next step will be to drain the system of any remaining water. Remove the plugs to drain pipes, valves, pumps, sprinklers, booster pumps and anything else on the aboveground portion of the irrigation system that can hold water. Clean out the sand trap on the end of the pivot and drain any condensed water from wheel gearboxes and gear motors.Ensure there are no loose or damaged connections. Seal any openings to help avoid damage from rodents. Apply rodent bait as needed. Check the ground rod and grounding connection. Clean up excess vegetation around the pivot point and at the well. This will help make the space less inviting to rodents and other pests.Service required parts and test the metering equipmentCheck all of the wheel gearboxes and gear motors and make sure they have an adequate amount of gear oil and that there are no leaking seals. Make sure to check the U-joints between the gear box and gear motor. If there is more than a quarter-inch of movement, they should be replaced.Steel moving on steel without proper lubrication can lead to unnecessary wear and tear on irrigation equipment. Be sure to grease all moving parts, including the pivot point bearing, towable hubs, corner legs and rollers. If it is a diesel-powered motor, change the engine oil, oil filters and fuel filters.Repair any rutted pivot wheel tracks. Repairing tracks at the end of the season will help reduce erosion during the winter and spring.Make sure the flow meter on the withdrawal point (usually at the pump) is functioning properly. A properly functioning meter can be used as a means to determine proper operation of the pumping unit. Note the end reading so that, in conjunction with a starting reading, there will be a record of water used over the growing season. If the flow meter is functioning improperly, contact the Georgia Environmental Protection Division for assistance.For more information, see UGA Extension Circular 911, “Evaluating and Interpreting Application Uniformity of Center Pivot Irrigation Systems.” If you need assistance with winterizing your irrigation, contact your local UGA Extension agent.last_img read more

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Mountain Mama: Glamping at the Edisto River Treehouses

first_imgDear Mountain Mama: My in-laws are coming to visit and my wife and I would like to introduce them to the magic of overnight river trips. I’ve been looking into “glamping” options, but I can’t stand the idea of a flat screen tv, guides, or catered meals in the outdoors. I’d like to ease my parents into the backcountry without paying for high-end luxury. Any suggestions? Thanks, Happy CamperDear Happy Camper: Glamping, short for glamorous camping, allows people to experience the outdoors surrounded by creature comforts. Some say the concept started from safaris that catered to individuals with a lot of money who wanted to experience wildlife viewing while sleeping in beds with 1000-count sheets.What constitutes glamping differs depending on an individual’s perspective. Anything from a platform tent to a yurt to a treehouse falls under the definition of glamping. But there are less upscale options that include more amenities than camping.Imagine stopping halfway on a 23-mile canoe trip on an undeveloped river and spending the night in a treehouse. You’d enjoy more amenities than camping. There’d be futons to sleep on and a screened sleeping area that would allow the evening breeze to whisper you asleep. There’d be cooking utensils, an outdoor grill, and a dining deck. The treehouse would be off the grid and the river the only running water. There would be outhouses and oil candles, but nothing more extravagant.tree-house-camping2Owners Anne and Scott Kennedy built Edisto River Treehouses in the middle of a private wildlife refuge on an undammed river. Located midway between Charleston, Columbia, and Savannah, the treehouses are nestled along the river’s edge and accessible only by canoe.The meandering blackwater river allows a relaxing trip, the type of outing enjoyed by many generations. The river flows beneath under huge live oaks cloaked with Spanish moss. The current moves paddlers along at 2-4 knots, but basic canoe handling definitely helps with maneuvering around fallen trees. Abundant wildlife grace the shores, including wild turkey, beaver, kingfisher, great blue heron, and egrets.But don’t take my word for it. Men’s Journal named the treehouses in their “Top 50 Vacation Destinations” and Outside Magazine called it the “Favorite off-the-beaten-path Adventure in South Carolina.”Enjoy! Mountain Mamalast_img read more

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The 4 worst office personalities

first_img 75SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Wendy Moody Wendy Moody is a Senior Editor with CUInsight.com. Wendy works with the editorial team to help edit the content including current news, press releases, jobs and events. She keeps … Web: www.cuinsight.com Details The InstigatorThere’s always that one person who loves to stir up trouble. What is it about drama that they love so much? The root of the problem lies in the fact that this employee has way too much free time. Maybe recommending them to your boss for a certain new project may cut down on some office gossip.The Suck-UpThis employee will laugh at every single joke your boss makes. The suck-up has a constant yearning to be liked and will do anything to remain on your boss’ good side. In our childhoods, this person was referred to as the “teacher’s pet.”The Constant CompetitorSome people are just more naturally competitive than others, and that’s okay. But when certain coworkers take it too far, it can be difficult to handle. The constant competitor is always aggressive and will do whatever it takes to “win,” even if that means throwing you under the buss.The SlackerFor some reason some individuals have the ability to literally get away with anything. Whether it’s because they have a charismatic demeanor or just find a way to get others to pick up the slack, this personality type is known for their laziness. Just because they behave a certain way doesn’t mean you should, so make sure to not let their slacking off affect your job performance.last_img read more

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EU approves its first prepandemic H5N1 vaccine

first_imgMay 19, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – An H5N1 influenza vaccine made by the British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has become the first prepandemic vaccine to be licensed by the European Union (EU), the company announced today.The European Medicines Agency has approved the adjuvanted vaccine, called Prepandrix, for marketing in all 27 EU countries, GSK said in a news release. The vaccine offers European governments the opportunity to protect their populations “in advance or at the outset of a declared influenza pandemic,” the company said. The product is licensed for adults aged 18 to 60.The EU approval comes about 13 months after the US Food and Drug Administration approved the first H5N1 vaccine for the United States, made by Sanofi Pasteur.”This vaccine marks a significant step in the world’s ability to cope with an influenza pandemic,” GSK CEO Jean-Pierre Garnier said in the release.Disease experts hope that prepandemic vaccines, based on existing H5N1 strains, will offer some protection against an emerging pandemic strain of H5N1 until a specific pandemic vaccine can be developed and produced, a process expected to take 4 to 6 months.The EU approval is based on studies of a version of the vaccine involving an H5N1 strain isolated in Vietnam in 2004 (a clade 1 strain), the company said. Results of animal and human studies suggest that the vaccine may also offer protection against clade 2 strains of the virus.The vaccine contains an oil-and-water adjuvant that enables it to induce what is believed to be a protective immune response at low doses, according to published results. For example, two 3.8-microgram (mcg) doses generated immune responses that met all US and European criteria for vaccine licensing, according to findings published last August in The Lancet. By comparison, seasonal flu vaccines contain 15 mcg of antigen for each flu strain targeted.In addition, more than 75% of volunteers who received two 3.8-mcg doses of the vaccine were shown to have neutralizing antibodies against a clade 2 strain of H5N1, the Lancet report said.GSK announced last year it would donate 50 million doses of its H5N1 vaccine to the World Health Organization (WHO) to help launch an international prepandemic vaccine stockpile.The company said it has already sold supplies of its vaccine to the United States, Switzerland, and Finland. Officials said sales in 2007 totaled 146 million British pounds (US $284 million).The WHO said last week that at least 16 companies have H5N1 vaccines in advanced development.See also: May 19 GSK news releasehttp://www.gsk.com/media/press-releases/2008/first-pre-pandemic-vaccine-approved-to-help-protect-against-pandemic-influenza.htmlAug 27, 2007, CIDRAP News story “Trial results for Glaxo’s H5N1 vaccine released”Apr 17, 2007, CIDRAP News story “FDA approves first H5N1 vaccine”May 16 CIDRAP News story “Launch of WHO H5N1 vaccine stockpile still awaited”CIDRAP News seven-part article series “The pandemic vaccine puzzle”last_img read more

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Sound Stockbourne is on the move

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

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Gillon takes the helm at LSM

first_imgWould you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img

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