July 5, 2012 § 2 Comments
Google is probably the most amazing and useful technological tool that the average person uses every day. That’s kind of crazy to say about a search engine, but it’s got to be true or very close to true because the answer to almost every question is right at your fingertips whereas before people had to guess, lie, or remain in the dark every time they pondered something.
Or go to a library I guess. What’s a library?
My favorite part of Google is definitely “Google suggest” when it already knows what you’re going to ask before you get finished asking it. You thought you were original, but you probably weren’t. Even better, you thought you wanted to know THIS and then all of a sudden in the middle of typing your question to Google it suggests something else and now you decide you really want to know THAT. My favorite example of all-time was when it was raining outside and I decided I want to know if birds can fly in the rain. It might seem like a stupid question but there are no stupid questions, there are only really dumb questions.
I started to type “Can birds fly” and then the suggestions come up:
“Can birds fly at night”
“Can birds fly in the rain”
“Can birds fly backwards”
I then decided that what I really wanted to know if birds could fly backwards or upside down. I went there and immediately I found a Yahoo Question that was one of my favorite Yahoo Questions of all-time:
“Why can birds fly but flies can’t bird?”
I don’t know if that question is still on Yahoo but damn it is a great one!
We all use Google to find random factoids and so I figured that a fun new series would be to share with the world what I Googled this week. Maybe it will be interesting for others to find this kind of stuff out? To share my findings and my random thoughts during a given week. Or maybe it won’t be, whatever. I’m going to do it anyway!
Here are some of my recent Google searchs:
“Near Death Experiences”
You only need to type in “near” for Google to suggest “near death experiences” at the #1 suggestion. I’ve recently become obsessed and consumed with trying to find out what happens when you die. (You need to type in ‘what happens’ for Google to suggest ‘what happens when you die’ which is the second hit after “what happens in Vegas” so that really helps put our national idea of what’s important into perspective.)
Of course, nobody knows exactly what happens when you die but people have died and come back and many have shared the same tales of bright lights, tunnels, and seeing dead relatives. Near-death.com is the top hit for Near Death Experiences and is full of links and information regarding near death experiences. It’s really interesting stuff.
By lowering the body temperature, you can actually remain dead for hours and be brought back to life. Many people have recounted similar experiences and actually being able to float out of their body and see what’s happening below them, oftentimes in an operating room. I was led to one of the most famous accounts of this by a woman named Pam Reynolds. She had brain surgery in 1991 and was completely brain dead for a time but when was revived and awake, was able to recount particular details that she could not have known unless she was actually in the room watching what was happening. How is this possible unless the soul really can escape the body after death and go off to heaven or being a ghost or whatever?
Well, of course there are critics of this and skeptics. According to her Wikipedia page, they have cited that some of Pam’s memories actually occurred while she was under anesthesia and not when she was dead. It’s possible that she was just really out of it but managed to pick up the sounds and conversations in the room and make an educated guess on what was going on. Others have also said that EEG monitoring of your brain waves isn’t 100% accurate, so it’s possible that she was not dead or not dead for very long.
That’s another interesting point though: What is “dead”?
Amazingly, I came across “Moment of Death” randomly on Netflix last night and thought “DAMN I NEED TO WATCH THIS NOW!” The National Geographic documentary specifically highlights the debate about when you are actually dead, as well as near death experiences. Are you dead when you stop breathing? When your heart stops? When your brain shuts down? When your cells die?
Even after your heart stops pumping blood to the other parts of your body, your organs go into shutdown mode but it takes a couple of hours. The rest of your body is TRYING to stay alive, even if it’s futile. You know in the movies when a person’s head is chopped off and they blink a few times and you think “Yeah, WHATEVAH DUDE!”? Turns out that it’s not science fiction. Oftentimes in history when the guillotine was the most popular execution device, it was reported that heads would blink, speak, gives looks, and move their mouths. However, it’s mostly anecdotes and often thought among the science crowd to just be random muscle twitching or automatic reflex action.
It’s said that Antoine Lavoisier was asked to blink after he was beheaded and that he actually blinked 12-15 times. Probably Morse code for “Screw you guys.”
The truth of the matter is that we couldn’t know for 100% certainty unless we cut someone’s head off, re-attached it and brought the person back to life to tell us whether they meant to mouth the words “Fuck You” or if it was random muscle twitching.
Back to the movie Moment of Death for a second though. It’s hard to say when you actually die (and Terri Schiavo was brought up for the fact that some people believe you’re actually dead when your “personality” is gone) but I think we can all agree that it happens to the best of us. It used to be that people were so afraid of being buried alive that you’d be kept above ground with a string attached to your finger and a bell for several days before they’d actually consider you ready for burial. (They never once had a case of a person ringing the bell.)
But what about near death experiences? The most damning piece of evidence to me, when it comes to whether or not near death experiences are actually you leaving your body and going to heaven or whatever, is “High-G Training.”
Pilots-in-training are put into a centrifuge and tested against high speeds where they have to hit like 9 G’s of force and test whether or not they can handle it. Many of the pilots pass out during this test and completely lose consciousness but are nowhere near actual death… they just black out because the brain loses blood during this experiment. (I’m not an expert but this is what my research has told me.) What I do know is that pilots report back there experiences from blacking out in the centrifuge:
A bright light, tunnel, dead relatives, out of body experience. Identical reports to near death experiences except these pilots were nowhere near death. Lame.
I’m going to make this one much briefer and not even related to Parapsychology, really. Near death experiences fall under the umbrella of parapsychology and I was led to this page when I went down the Wikipedia rabbit hole, an even more dangerous rabbit hole than the Google rabbit hole.
Parapsychology studies things like telepathy, reincarnation, and near death experiences but has nothing to do with The X-Files. They don’t care about UFOs, bigfoot, or ghosts. However, that’s where my brain led me to and I just want to get this off my chest:
EVERYBODY HAS A CAMERA NOW. ITS IN YOUR POCKET. IF GHOSTS EXISTED, WE SHOULD HAVE EVIDENCE. IF YOU SAW A LEGIT UFO, THERE SHOULD BE EVIDENCE. IF YOU SAW BIGFOOT, OR THE LOCH NESS MONSTER, OR A CHUPACABRA, WHERE ARE THE PICTURES OR VIDEOS?
There were valid excuses for not having hardcore evidence of ghosts and aliens in the past. People used to burn innocent girls for being witches and it seems harsh now but why wouldn’t you believe it in the 1700s? Seems legit because my grandpa said witches are real, right? Well, we soon realized that it was stupid and now with communication, we can easily transfer information in seconds.
I believe in aliens. As in, I believe that there are probably thousands of civilizations in the universe that we don’t know about. But they’ve probably never been here. Ancient Aliens is a terribly stupid show. Why wouldn’t a UFO just once fly over Manhattan? Why wouldn’t we have a hardcore video showing a UFO that nobody would show? Oh, the government wouldn’t allow it? If I had shot a UFO video that was real, I wouldn’t let the government stand in my way of sharing it with the world and getting those dollar bills and fame for being the first guy to have real evidence of E.T. and it wouldn’t be hard for me to do since I have a camera in my pocket 24/7.
I want to believe in ghosts but the only “Evidence” of ghosts is on Ghosts Hunters when it would really be on THE NEWS if it were legit.
Let’s stop kidding ourselves until someone has some real video of some of these things. It wouldn’t be that hard to do, considering that big brother is always watching.
“What Celebrities are Gay”
Anderson Cooper was in the news this week for coming out of the closet that nobody thought he was in (I mean, the sky is blue too, right?) and so it got me curious to see a reminder of what other celebrities were gay.
Gay, straight, bi, tri, I don’t care what you are. Get married, though I don’t know why you would want to. Straight people should probably be protesting to have straight marriages banned, considering how often they end in divorce. But I have no problems with gay people and definitely think they should have all the same rights as everyone else. Just the fact that we even have to debate this is terrible.
But I wanted to know what other celebrities were gay. I was honestly shocked how long it took for Google to know what I wanted, when you consider the fact that you can type almost any actors name into Google and one of the top hits is “Will Smith gay” or “Ryan Gosling gay” for basically every guy in Hollywood. We all just seem to want to put rumors around these people for being gay. I think that some of them definitely are. I think that John Travolta probably is, though it’s none of our business really. (I do think it would be cool if more of them just came out and represented their beliefs for that community.)
Realistically, acting is kind of an effeminate occupation but we never talk about it like that. Look, there are a lot of gay women in the WNBA. I read a quote from one woman that used to play in the league that is already “out” and she said:
“I don’t know how many women in the WNBA are lesbians but I think it would be easier to tell you which ones weren’t rather than which ones were.” (I’m paraphrasing but that’s pretty close to the actual quote if not exact.)
I only know one girl that played college basketball and she’s a lesbian and she said most of the girls on the team were too. My point being: Certain occupations are going to have gender identities that sway harder towards gay or straight. It wouldn’t surprise me if acting was one of those occupations. It might only be 15%, but that’s higher than average. It’s hard to say exactly how many people in the US are gay, because not everyone is out and not everyone cares to share, which is fine, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the number was slightly higher in acting for men.
I also think that sometimes men have so much heterosexual sex when they’re famous that they can become bored and start experimenting with other stuff. Seriously, wouldn’t a guy like Channing Tatum just have so much sex that he can’t help but try on a different style? I developed this theory after having accidentally come across a friends internet history and seeing some tranny porn listed, which really surprised me because I know this friend is straight and that he has very regular sex with lots and lots of women. Maybe to the point where he just became bored. Just a theory.
There are some celebrities that are gay and in the closet, this is a fact and not all of them are as “assumed” as Anderson Cooper. Perhaps they’re afraid that coming out for them won’t be as successful as it was for Ellen DeGeneres. Perhaps they just don’t think it’s your business. It actually isn’t.
Though it may not seem like it at times, I also want to reveal something to the world: I’m straight. There, I said it. Sure, I have as much sex with women as Anderson Cooper does, but I really wanted to get that off of my chest. It really does feel better!
“What Celebrity Do I Look Like”
Like I said, “What celebrities are gay” doesn’t even come up on the Google suggest for “what celebrities.” The suggestions are “What celebrities are instagram,” “live in Malibu,” “smoke” and “are wearing.”
However one of the first hits for “What celeb” is “What celebrity do I look like?” so I immediately went to that and found a facial recognition scanner on Myheritage.com. My three friends and I all took pictures and went for the facial recognition scanner and I wasn’t very successful. While my asshole friend Marcus got comparisons like Paul Walker and Dave Navarro, I wasn’t so lucky.
Apparently I look like the son of Saddam Hussein, which basically means that I look like Saddam himself. Though I don’t have any real facial hair or big bushy eyebrows, this is the comp I got, though it was only 60%.
I don’t really look like any celebrity, which is why I ran this test. The best compliment I’ve ever received is probably that I looked like a fat Channing Tatum. I wish I would have stuck with that and not the son of a madman, who was also a madman.
“I Was on Pawn Stars”
I wasn’t on Pawn Stars but I wanted to hear some real life accounts of people that were on the show to see what it was REALLY like. For some reason, these aren’t easy to find. I’m going to keep looking…
Back to the Google!