800 million women are having their periods right now. Shhh, don’t tell anyone.   In an opinion piece, Caitlin Figueiredo, a Plan International Australia youth ambassador, calls out the needless shame of menstruation. To break menstruation taboos, she says, people first must…

The installation of a sewer system in French Hanoi, circa 1900, was a good idea in theory—a triumph of colonial know-how. The execution? Not so much.   Rats swarmed the vast underground system—built at the behest of Paul Doumer, a French bureaucrat and Governor General of…

Why are cat owners who happen to be female always “crazy” cat ladies—never “feline advocates” or “winsome rescuers”?  

Dogs seem to great all the olfactory credit, but the human sense of smell is nothing to sneeze at.   Feeling nosy about humans and their sense of smell, researchers back in 2007 blindfolded University of California Berkeley students and had them try to follow a 30-foot…

Headed to a Cinco de Mayo party tonight? Well, get your facts straight. May 5 is NOT Mexico’s Independence Day (that’s Sept. 16). It actually celebrates Mexico’s victory over France (!) in the 1862 Battle of Puebla. See this article in the Atlanta Journal and Constitution …

Known as the Poison Garden and started by Duchess of Northumberland Jane Percy in 2005, the 100 or so plants at Alnwick Garden in northeast England educate people about the healing—and killing—powers of plants.   Only 20 garden visitors at a time are permitted through the…

  Heading to an Earth Day gathering or the March for Science? Check out #earthdaysongs if you need some inspiration to ready your playlist ... She Blinded Me with Climate Science Everybody Wants to Ruin the World This Landfill is Your Landfill We Didn’t Start the…

Timely new data shows that a chocolate Easter bunny’s ears are often the first to fall victim to human amputation. A full 59% of online survey respondents stated that they prefer to eat chocolate rabbits starting with the ears. That’s compared to only 4% who like to start…

The Victorian era had a bustling black market in corpses for medical experimentation. People went to great lengths to protect the bodies of their loved ones.   Enter the great Coffin-Torpedo arms race of the late 19th century. Tinkerers designed devices inside coffin lids…

You’re in Portland. You’re thirsty. You turn not to a refreshing fair-trade, organic chai latte. No, you sip from a Benson Bubbler.