6 Facts About Easter That Have Nothing to Do with Jesus’ Resurrection


Easter-Cross-Bunny-600X300-558x279We always wondered how rabbits, eggs and hot cross buns come to represent the spring holiday we call Easter. So with a little bit of Google magic we did some digging and found out some pretty interesting things.

For example, a majority of Easter associations did not actually originate with Christian practices, but rather from Persian, Greek and Babylonian traditions that Christians adopted.

Here’s more of what we found:

1. Why do we do what we do? Ancient Babylonians, who lived 2,000 years before Christ, would annually commemorate the resurrection of their food and vegetation god Tammuz, who was brought back from the underworld by his mother, Ishtar. Funny thing is, their festivities are exactly how Christians all over the world celebrate today — egg dyeing, hot cross buns and formal Sunday morning worship.

2. Why is it called “Easter”? Not only can we thank the ancient Babylonians for the Easter activities, but we can also thank them for the name. Ishtar is actually pronounced “Easter,” according to many Semitic dialects. Perhaps this is when the name “Easter” became associated with the resurrection of a culture’s special god.

3. Or… Did we get the name “Easter” from the ancient goddess Eostre — better known as Goddess of the Growing Light of Spring? She was known to represent the bright and vibrant first half of the year, loved by many and known for the innocence and beauty associated with springtime.

4. So, what’s the deal with the rabbit? You might be sitting there thinking, “Wait, but rabbits don’t even lay eggs.” So here’s why the rabbit is associated with Easter: Not only do rabbits multiply at an alarming rate, they also have spiritual symbolism. It is said that rabbits are actually the “spiritual twin” or totemic representation of Eostre, the goddess mentioned above. So with this combination of grand fertility and spiritual bondage, the rabbit carries the heavy weight of being Easter’s mascot.

5. Thought that dyeing eggs was just for fun? Think again! Ages ago, Egyptians logically used an egg to symbolize fertility, new life and resurrection. They used to think that eggs fell from the sky, which meant that the gods were sending them a message — a new life had arrived! Red dye, gathered from plant pigments, was used to color eggs and symbolized the blossoming colors of springtime.

6. Why does Easter fall on a different day every year? Christianity’s one exception to adopting certain Pagan practices is the date which we celebrate Easter. Based on our solar system, every year Easter is scheduled to fall on the first Sunday after the first full Moon of the Vernal Equinox.

These facts about Easter raise a bigger question: Why did early Christians adopt pagan holidays and rituals for themselves?

It’s complicated and there were a lot of variables and historical points involved, but here’s the quick version from Answers.com:

By adopting pagan feasts, the Christians could provide an alternative for converts who were unwilling to give up ancient festivities. As Christianity became the majority religion, they could also demand that all people attend church or other Christian observances on that day, thus ensuring that the people did not spend time in observance of pagan celebrations.

Rihanna Bottomless On All Fours Photo Shoot


Rihanna poses completely bottomless while on all fours in this photo shoot for the new issue of National Geographic.

These trainers do an excellent job of keeping this Rihanna creature calm and cooperative, while the photographer captures her in her natural position with her face down and ass up.

Unfortunately (as you can see in the photos below) the photographer was foolishly shooting these pictures from the wrong end. Of course that mistake is easy to make, as it is hard to distinguish Rihanna’s swollen red hindquarters from her face. Perhaps with a few more watermelon slices they could placate Rihanna long enough re-shoot from the other end.

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Okay, where did the word ‘OK’ come from?

ok_cafeOK, so you’re familiar with “OK.” You probably use it all the time, and probably not for just one purpose. But do you really know what it means? And if not, are you OK with that?
The word “OK” is one of America’s most popular cultural exports, squeezing myriad meanings from just two letters in a way that embodies American ingenuity, enthusiasm and efficiency. It has almost as many origin stories as connotations, but linguists generally agree it was first published on March 23, 1839, a date now honored as OK Day. That means March 23, 2014, is the 175th birthday of OK.
So much subtlety in so few letters has made OK a tough nut to crack. But thanks to the late U.S. etymologist Allen Walker Read, we at least have a grasp on where it came from. After diligent research into OK’s history, Read published his findings in the journal American Speech in 1963 and 1964, tracing the term back to a March 23, 1839, article in the Boston Morning Herald (see below).
In the succinct spirit of OK, let’s cut to the chase: “OK” is most likely short for “oll korrect,” a jokey misspelling of “all correct” that needs a little historical context to make sense. In the late 1830s, a slang fad inspired young, educated folks in Boston and New York to make tongue-in-cheek acronyms for deliberate misspellings of common phrases. This led to arcane abbreviations like K.G. for “no go” (“know go”), N.C. for “enough said” (“nuff ced”) and K.Y. for “no use” (“know yuse”). Krazy kids!
This 1839 use of “o.k.” in the Boston Morning Herald is now considered the word’s first print appearance. (Image: University of Illinois)
Printing “o.k.” in a big-city newspaper helped it rise above other trendy initials, but it soon got an even bigger publicity boost. That’s because 1840 was a U.S. election year, and incumbent President Martin van Buren happened to be nicknamed “Old Kinderhook” after his birthplace of Kinderhook, N.Y. Hoping to capitalize on this coincidence, van Buren’s Democratic Party supporters formed the O.K. Club to promote him before the 1840 election, according to Oxford University Press.
While OK didn’t get O.K. re-elected — he lost to Whig William Henry Harrison — the word did get stuck in America’s memory. Its roots were soon forgotten, though, partly due to the same election-year chaos that popularized it. Whigs used it to mock former president and van Buren ally Andrew Jackson, for example, claiming Jackson invented it to cover up his own misspelling of “all correct.” Van Buren critics also turned the acronym against him, with insults like “out of kash” and “orful katastrophe.”
OK may have been the real winner in 1840, but it still took a while to become “America’s greatest word,” a title bestowed by author Allan Metcalf in his 2010 book about OK. Top 19th-century writers including Mark Twain shied away from it, according to Metcalf, providing little literary legitimacy until a variant of OK was used in 1918 by Woodrow Wilson, the only U.S. president with a Ph.D.
This long path to ubiquity can be partly mapped by Google Ngram, which charts annual word usage across 500 years’ worth of books. It doesn’t include spoken OKs, or even all the written ones, but it’s still an interesting look at the word’s popularity, which apparently surged from 1970 to 2000.
Much of OK’s success can be attributed to its brevity and flexibility, according to the Online Etymology Dictionary, which notes “it filled a need for a quick way to write an approval on a document, bill, etc.” It has also evolved to fill many other linguistic niches, like granting permission (“That’s OK by me”), conveying status or safety (“Are you OK?”), calling to action or changing the subject (“OK, what’s next?”), and even hinting at mediocrity or disappointment (“We had an OK time at the party”).
The Boston Morning Herald may have been first to print OK, and that instance was clearly decoded as “all correct,” but it’s still impossible to rule out many alternative origins. Woodrow Wilson argued it should be spelled “okeh,” for instance, because he thought it came from the Choctaw word okeh for “it is so.” That’s a longstanding explanation, but its support has faded due to lack of evidence.
Other theories also see shades of OK beyond American English, in terms like Scots’ och aye (“yes, indeed”), Greek’s ola kala (“all is well”), Finnish’s oikea (“correct”) and Mandingo’s O ke (“certainly”). Complicating matters is that some people now spell OK “okay,” a newer variant. Even in the acronym camp, though, some argue OK came from the shorthand for “zero killed” on battlefield reports.
Oxford describes a potential link from OK to West Africa’s Mandingo language as “the only other theory with at least a degree of plausibility,” but adds that “historical evidence … may be hard to unearth.” As with much of U.S. culture, OK could just be a blend of concepts and syllables from around the planet, slowly gelling over generations. Whoever coined it, it’s now widely used as a loanword in other languages, providing a pithy verbal package for what NPR calls “America’s can-do philosophy.” And with that much global reach, OK has probably grown too big for us to ever dig up its roots.
That may not be a very satisfying answer, but considering all that can happen in 175 years, it’s OK.

Kate Upton Naked Outtake From SI Swimsuit 2014


By on February 20, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Kate Upton naked 

Many people do not know this, but the Sports Illustrated swimsuit models all pose completely naked, and it is only later that the tech wizards at SI airbrush on the body paint bikinis.

As proof take a look at this Kate Upton nude outtake from the 2014 SI swimsuit issue. As you can see she is butt naked in this original photo, and later they add the bikini and remove all the excess fat.

It is much simpler this way and safer from a legal standpoint. If someone had to actually go through the trouble of physically painting Kate Upton’s enormous and sinful nude body they would no doubt go on disability claiming carpal tunnel and post-traumatic stress, and probably file suit for being subjected to a hostile work environment.

Woman reveals her addiction to drinking …….. paint


A 43-year-old woman has revealed her secret compulsion to drink paint on the season premiere of TLC’s My Strange Addiction.

Heather Beal, an Alabama mother of two, admits that she has guzzled close to three gallons since she first started the practice three years ago.

‘As it’s going down your throat it feels  very nice and warm, almost like a thicker version of warm milk,’ she says. ‘But obviously, it’s got that very strong  chemical taste, which is perfect to me.’


Secret habit: Heather Beal has tried paint in all forms to satisfy her cravings

Ms Beal says that she prefers paint in marker form, and goes to the hardware store to feed her habit. Every day she pries the cap off one paint marker and drinks the contents.

‘I drink paint from markers because I have looked for other paint both in quart or gallon form, and I haven’t found one that satisfies my desire,’ she explains.

Ms Beal demonstrates how she shakes the paint marker pen up to get the ideal consistency – the sticks it in her mouth.

In another scene, her eye twitches as she downs a shot  of white paint in front of the camera.

‘I drink paint from markers because I have looked for other paints, both  in quart or gallon form, and haven’t found any that satisfy my desire,’  she explains.

She says that her bizarre habit began after her mother died, and that until now no one has seen her drink paint – especially not her children.

Most inhalants depress the central nervous system in a similar way to alcohol, but inhalant abuse can also cause relaxation, euphoria, slurred speech, hallucinations,  drowsiness, dizziness, nausea and vomiting.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration, users of inhalants may lose  the ability to walk, talk or think.


Other noticeable signs in people  using inhalants include nosebleeds, runny nose,  reddened eyes – and sudden violent behavior may result because of the effect inhalants have on the  brain.

Later in the episode Ms Beal seems to get a wake-up call after she visits a doctor and learns that she has done damage to her kidneys.

After someone asked her what she would feel like if one of her kids drank paint, she vowed to kick the habit – and in a recent interview with TLC insisted that she has stayed clean.

The fifth season of My Strange Addiction airs Wednesdays at 9pm on TLC.

How Did People in the Middle Ages Get Rid of Human Waste?


This question originally appeared on Quora.

Answer by Tim O’Neill, atheist, medievalist, skeptic, and amateur historian:

imagesThe idea that people emptied chamberpots out windows into the street is one of the images of the past that has been taught to generations of school children. It’s usually said to have been done in the Middle Ages, and it’s an image that has stuck with many people, particularly because we find it so disgusting. Unfortunately, like many popular ideas about the Middle Ages, it’s largely nonsense.

People in the Middle Ages were no less sensitive to foul odors or disgusted by human waste than we are. They also did not understand exactly how human waste could spread disease, but they knew it did—they just thought it was something to do with its odors. So medieval towns and cities actually had a lot of ordinances and laws to do with waste disposal, latrines, and toilets. In medieval London, for example, people were responsible for the upkeep and cleanliness of the street outside their houses. The fines that could be imposed on them if they didn’t do this could be extremely onerous. One account talks of an outraged mob badly beating a stranger who littered their street with the skin of a smoked fish, since they didn’t want to have to pay the heavy fine for his laziness. In an environment like that, people are hardly going to be dumping buckets of excrement out of their windows.

Smaller residences made do with a bucket or “close stool” over a basin, either of which was emptied daily. They were usually carried to one of the streams that emptied into the nearest river and emptied into the water. This made some of these streams, like the Fleet, rather foul-smelling and gave one in the city of Exeter the lyrical name of “the Shitbrook.” There were also public latrines maintained by the city of London, like the large communal municipal latrines on London Bridge that emptied into the river.

So like most things “everyone knows” about the Middle Ages, this one is in the same category as cumbersome heavy armor, the belief in a flat Earth, and medieval people eating rotten meat covered in spices—it’s a myth.