Don't Panic! Lighten Up!


Leaving cert papers to be entirely written in emojis

Following reports of record levels of borderline-illiteracy in today's teenagers, the Department of Education has revealed plans to publish this year's Leaving Certificate exam papers in a combination of emojis, emoticons, and 'text-speak'.

The move comes following falling results among Leaving Cert students, which many experts have attributed to the rise in smartphone communications, in which proper spelling and grammar have been cast aside in favour of smiley faces and acronyms.

Exacerbated by social media platforms such as Snapchat and Twitter, today's student now has trouble reading plain English, let alone writing it. In a bid to combat this, a spokesperson for the Department of Education today announced plans to publish exam papers written using the same nonsense that kids are used to reading and writing every day.

"The ability of a teenager to form a coherent sentence had nosedived in recent years," said Owen Caughlin, spokesperson for the Department of Education.

"This has lead to a drop in performance across the board when it comes to Leaving Cert results. We were going to issue spelling waivers similar to those we offer to dyslexic pupils, but in the end, we thought it would be easier to just write the exam papers using a combination of LOL-speak and wee pictures of cats high-fiving each other".

Following the implementation of the emoji system, the DOE will next look at an overhaul of test marking, with the current points system expected to be replaced with Likes and FAVs.


Government admits it was only behind destruction of North Tower

© The Onion
Newly declassified documents reveal plans by the Bush Administration and the Project for the New American Century to instill fear in Americans by “destroying the taller, more iconic tower” of the World Trade Center.
Washington - Saying they felt a duty to reveal what truly transpired on September 11, 2001, numerous high-ranking federal officials announced publicly Tuesday that the United States government was responsible for destroying just the North Tower of the World Trade Center.

Representatives from the Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, and half a dozen other government bureaus revealed at a morning press conference that they were responsible for the development, funding, and execution of a plan to take down 1 World Trade Center in New York's Financial District. Describing their mission as an unqualified success, officials noted that the completion of their objective was followed 17 minutes later by a separate suicide attack on 2 World Trade Center by al-Qaeda operatives piloting a hijacked airliner.

"The American people deserve to know that, of the two towers that were brought down in Lower Manhattan on 9/11, only one was the target of the federal government," said CIA spokesman Tom McLennan, emphasizing that their carefully guarded plot was a wholly independent event planned without any foreknowledge of the similar act of terrorism designed by al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden for the same day. "While we freely admit our culpability in striking the first building, let us be clear that we had no hand in destroying the other tower. In fact, that was just as shocking and devastating to us as it was to all American citizens."

"Aside from our controlled implosion of Tower No. 1, we can assure the public that the September 11 attacks were carried out by Islamic radicals as part of their war against the West," McLennan added.

Comment: For the real story checkout 9/11-The Ultimate Truth.


Coming attractions: A preview of 2015

January 25: 467 people reported missing from a university in Mexico. US State Department blames Russia.

February 1: Military junta overthrows President Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela. Washington decries the loss of democracy.

February 2: US recognizes the new Venezuelan military junta, offers it 50 jet fighters and tanks.

February 3: Revolution breaks out in Venezuela endangering the military junta; 40,000 American marines land in Caracas to quell the uprising.

February 16: White police officer in Chicago fatally shoots a 6-year old black boy holding a toy gun.

March 6: Congress passes a new law which states that to become president of the United States a person must have the surname Bush or Clinton.

Comment: It could always get worse.


Swedish bunnies tipped for Grand National win

© YouTube
Swedish rabbits compete in London last year.
Four Swedish jumping rabbits capable of clearing up to three metres in a single hop are gearing up to compete in the Rabbit Grand National in England at the end of this month.

It is is the first time Sweden's floppy-eared athletes will compete at Yorkshire's Small Animal Show dubbed the 'Crufts of the small animal world' - since Cherie, a two-year-old bunny from Gävle, bounded to victory in the 2012 hurdle race.

The sport of bunny athletics originated in Sweden in the 1970s, speading to England in 2011, when Swedish bunnies first competed at the Great Yorkshire Showground in Harrogate.

Scandinavia still leads the world, with the Danish hopper Tosen holding the record for the highest jump (close to a metre), and another Dane, Yabo, holding the three metre long-jump record.

Karin Molin from Sweden, who is bringing the Scandinavian competitors to the show, hopes her prize rabbit can beat his personal record.


Appearance and Reality: Animation shows how we hide our true feelings from the world

Elena Rogova's Appearance and Reality is a clever short story that tackles something we can all relate to: the difference between the feelings we show to the world and our hidden true feelings. It's like as we grow up, we put on a mask to suppress our feelings to look cool or appear strong or whatever. Screw that.

Sure, growing up teaches you a few things and adds wrinkles to emotions but sometimes, life is more enjoyable when you take that mask off.

Comment: It's not so much just 'taking the mask off'. Not expressing our true selves is what stops real, healthy development in the first place. It's possible to 'grow up' without becoming a jerk! G.I. Gurdjieff said:
A small child has no personality as yet. He is what he really is. He is essence. His desires, tastes, likes, dislikes, express his being such as it is. But as soon as so-called 'education' begins personality begins to grow. Personality is created partly by the intentional influences of other people, that is, by 'education,' and partly by involuntary imitation of them by the child itself. In the creation of personality a great part is also played by 'resistance' to people around him and by attempts to conceal from them something that is 'his own' or 'real.' Essence is the truth in man; personality is the false. But in proportion as personality grows, essence manifests itself more and more rarely and more and more feebly and it very often happens that essence stops in its growth at a very early age and grows no further.


WKUK- What anarchy might look like!

What happens once we have anarchy?

Comment: Nuclear power would be a huge problem if the current society's technology crashes.

We're not sure how long the elite could survive in bunkers if/when this happens!


For real? Fox host speculates metric system brought down AirAsia flight

© screen grab
Fox News host Anna Kooiman
Fox News host Anna Kooiman speculated on Sunday that an AirAsia flight could have gone missing because international pilots were trained using the metric system.

During breaking coverage of missing Flight QZ8501, Kooiman asked former FAA spokesperson Scott Brenner if the "real reason" the plane had disappeared was because of the "different way other countries train their pilots."

"Even when we think about temperature, it's Fahrenheit or Celsius," she pointed out. "It's kilometers or miles. You know, everything about their training could be similar, but different."

Comment: Makes perfect sense for people who don't think.


Top 10 Russian viral videos of 2014

© Source: Russia Beyond the Headlines -
No matter the stormy geopolitics that this year brought, Russia still remained one of the key exporters of viral, unusual, weird, and simply funny videos. Cats, gophers, police officers, bikers, and cosmonauts - here RBTH presents a selection of 10 of the most interesting Russian video hits of 2014.

1. Cartoon characters attack a driver


Videos of showdowns between angry drivers are frequently uploaded to the internet, but have you ever seen attackers dressed as cartoon characters?

Comment: The world may be crazy, but don't forget to laugh once in a while!

Christmas Tree

Homeowner ordered to take down zombie nativity scene

Talk about a nightmare before Christmas.

An Ohio homeowner was ordered by town officials to remove a Nativity scene in front of his house that featured zombies instead of wise men and a baby Jesus.

"I wanted a Nativity and I worked with what I had," Jasen Dixon, who manages a nearby haunted house, told Fox 19. "The neighbors don't like it. My father hates it and anything bad that happens he blames it on that."

The Nativity scene features life-size figures and a zombie baby Jesus, with pale skin and pure white eyes. At night, the figures are illuminated by red and green lights.


BBC reporter standing next to burning pile of drugs too high to finish report

The BBC's Middle East correspondent Quentin Sommerville was unable to finish a video broadcast after inhaling fumes from a pile of burning drugs.

In the video, Sommerville attempts to deliver a serious opener only to fall into a giggle fit, overcome by the potent narcotic fumes.

"Burning behind me is eight tones of heroin, opium, hash and other narcotics," Sommerville begins, but after pausing for breath he starts to laugh and is unable to continue.