“Game of Thrones” — Starbucks joins the legendary tale

❝ From all of the bizarre things we’ve seen on Game of Thrones—from an undead dragon to the warlocks of Qarth—a disposable coffee cup probably takes the cake.

❝ In last night’s episode, fans spotted the cup on the table of the great hall of Winterfell as the surviving army celebrated their victory against the battle against the undead. While the cast ate from wooden bowls and swigged from goblets (except for Tormund, who chugged his drink from a horn), the coffee cup was definitely out of place.

HARPER’S BAZAAR has one of the better collections of fan comments about the screw-up. And the updated version of their article reveals that the scene has now been edited and the paper coffee cup has now vanished.

Check out how people kill themselves – while taking selfies!


Say cheese—and watch out for that jagged cliff behind you!

❝ A group of health researchers in India have tried to tally the death toll from selfie taking, counting 259 deaths worldwide from October 2011 to November 2017. In doing so, they also caught a blurry glimpse of the leading ways in which people perish during dicey photo ops. The top three were drowning, transportation related (mostly being hit by trains), and falling off of things, such as cliff edges…

The resulting grim picture shows a developing public health threat, the researchers argue. Yet, the numbers are likely “just the tip of iceberg,” they add. Selfies are never recorded as an official cause of death, media reports don’t report every death, and the search was limited to English-language news reports…

❝ Still, the researchers were able to catch a reasonable peek into the perilous photo trends…Risk-taking men accounted for 72.5 percent of the fatalities with gender data. Of those with age data, the mean age was about 23 years old. The majority of deaths were of those aged 10 to 29.

Har. Death by misadventure would be the usual cause listed, I imagine.

Sharing privately with friends on Facebook — may have been very public

❝ As many as 14 million Facebook users who thought they were posting items they only wanted their friends or smaller groups to see may have been posting that content publicly, the company said Thursday.

According to Facebook, a software bug — which was live for 10 days in May — updated the audience for some users’ posts to “public” without any warning. Facebook typically lets users select the audiences who get to see posts; that setting is “sticky,” which means it remains the default until it is manually updated.

And then there’s a school of thought that believes there never was a bug. Just a switch clicked or left switched on – accidentally.

US soldiers reveal their location by jogging, working out

❝ An interactive map posted on the Internet that shows the whereabouts of people who use fitness devices such as Fitbit also reveals highly sensitive information about the locations and activities of soldiers at U.S. military bases, in what appears to be a major security oversight.

The Global Heat Map, published by the GPS tracking company Strava, uses satellite information to map the locations and movements of subscribers to the company’s fitness service over a two-year period, by illuminating areas of activity.

❝ Most parts of the United States and Europe, where millions of people use some type of fitness tracker, show up on the map as blazes of light because there is so much activity.

In war zones and deserts in countries such as Iraq and Syria, the heat map becomes almost entirely dark — except for scattered pinpricks of activity. Zooming in on those areas brings into focus the locations and outlines of known U.S. military bases, as well as of other unknown and potentially sensitive sites — presumably because American soldiers and other personnel are using fitness trackers as they move around.

❝ The U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State said on Monday it is revising its guidelines on the use of all wireless and technological devices on military facilities as a result of the revelations.

You can file this under: barn door, horse already gone

Truck full of hagfish rolls over releasing thousands of slimy sea creatures


Click for a close-up

❝ In a scene straight out of nightmares, a truck full of “slime eels” lost its load Thursday on U.S. 101, causing a five-car crash, dousing sedans with goo and sending sea creatures slithering across vehicles and the highway.

❝ Technically, the fish were not eels, but hagfish, which have a skull but no jaw or spine and they secrete slime when distressed, earning them the nickname “slime eels.”

And distressed they were, emitting gooey stuff that will make you shiver in your sandals — and that covered 101 along with the 7,500 pounds of fish.

Eeoouugh! Looks like a strategy meeting in the Trump White House.

College goes on firearms lockdown

A New York college that went on lockdown over a report of a gun on campus says the weapon turned out to be a light saber.

Students and staff members at Farmingdale State College on Long Island were told to shelter in place Wednesday while police investigated a report that someone was assembling a rifle in a school parking lot.

College spokeswoman Kathryn Coley says the rifle was actually a “Star Wars” toy.

Farmingdale State is part of the State University of New York system. It has about 8,700 students some of whom – no doubt – know the difference between a rifle and a light saber.