" Family likeness has often a deep sadness in it. Nature, that great tragic dramatist, knits us together by bone and muscle, and divides us by the subtler web of our brains; blends yearning and repulsion; and ties us by our heart-strings to the beings that jar us at every movement. "
George Eliot

Back in the day


The Triple Six Fix

The Triple Six Fix was a plot to rig the Pennsylvania Lottery. Masterminded by Nick Perry, the lottery's television announcer, the scheme focused on the Daily Number game, in which players pay to select a three-digit number in hopes of matching theirs to the one drawn from a container of numbered ping-pong balls. The balls are selected by a vacuum, so Perry planned to cheat the game by weighting all but two of the balls—numbers four and six—and buying combinations of those numbers. Did it work?



Street Food

Street food is found in cities around the world, and because it usually features intensely local culinary staples, the dishes served vary widely with geography. It is typically cheap and meant to be prepared and eaten quickly. Street food may be sold from carts, huts, trucks, or stands. It can be hot or cold and can consist of entire meals or little snacks. In northern China, scorpions on skewers are a popular street food. What other interesting street foods are found around the world?

Born on a day like today


Anthony Trollope

One of the great English novelists, Trollope spent seven unhappy years in London as a postal clerk before transferring to Ireland in 1841. Soon after, while still working for the postal service, he began writing. Working mainly before breakfast and at a fixed rate of 1,000 words an hour, he produced 47 novels, including the six interconnected Barsetshire novels and the highly regarded, satirical The Way We Live Now. What did he describe as "the most wretched fortnight of my manhood"?

Last updated on Wednesday, 24th April 2013

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