Yesterday’s I Did Not Know That Yesterday! tidbit concerned Sputnik 1, the Soviet satellite launched in 1957.
But what fate befell the iconic satellite? After 1,400 trips around the Earth, Sputnik burned up when it reentered the atmosphere in January of 1958 (just as it was supposed to).
The very next Sputnick launched contained the first terrestrial space traveller, Laika, a dog. Ok, wait. The first one burned up in earth’s atmosphere after three months and the second one contained a dog…that’s right, the Soviets killed that poor dog! When I heard the story of Laika as a kid, whoever I heard it from omitted that part. Although Laika didn’t burn up in the atmosphere, she was also not euthanized after 10 days of flight as Soviet scientists had planned. A Sputnik scientist recently revealed that Laika died after only a few hours in orbit from stress and overheating.
Two other (unrelated) things I didn’t know about Sputnik: that it was tiny (smaller than a basketball) and that Herb Caen coined the word “beatnik” based on Sputnik.
Bouchon Bakery has dog biscuits with foie gras and bacon in them. Taste test verdict? “Not good for humans. Good for spoiled dogs.”
A big dog on the subway with a fur-coated owner and a brick in its mouth. And I believe it’s a “pit bull-type” dog.
Malcolm Gladwell on different types of generalizations and when it’s helpful to generalize (and not). I don’t know about all that, but I *hate* “pit bull-type” dogs and I still think they should be banned.
Related to the stories about binding books with human skin from earlier in the week, apparently architect Le Corbusier bound one of his favorite books (Don Quixote) with the hide from one of his favorite dogs (Pinceau). The result looks like that textbook in Harry Potter that you needed to stroke the spine to get it to open without biting you.
Freakonomists Dubner and Levitt propose a solution for people who don’t clean up after their dogs in NYC: a mandatory doggie DNA database against which sidewalk dookies are compared and fines mailed out for offenders.
Oh, so you want flying cat pictures, do you?.