Monday, July 20, 2020

Perfectionism is a losing game

New research from Philipps University of Marburg in Germany suggests this behavior may not be doing us any favors in the office. Perfectionist tendencies can alienate coworkers, with employees preferring to work with colleagues who have more realistic expectations. And, in the end, perfectionism may not help us do our jobs any better, since other research suggests this approach has no effect, positive or negative, on performance. (Research Gate)


US passes 70K virus threshold again

An internal document prepared for the White House Coronavirus Task Force and published by the nonprofit Center for Public Integrity shows 18 states in the “red zone,” meaning they’re seeing more than 100 new cases per 100,000 people per week. At least 39 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico now have some form of mask requirement, and infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci is urging governors and mayors to be “forceful” on making sure those requirements are met. (CNN)


Coping with pandemic stress

As the pandemic continues to evolve, what may have helped us cope at the outset may not do the trick any longer. So how can we stay resilient? Binghamton University’s researchers argue that much of it comes down to reframing our situation. When we treat difficult circumstances as potential openings for problem solving and beneficial change, we can dial down the stress and anxiety of situations we can’t control. Beyond that, treating ourselves and others with some compassion can go a long way. (The Coversation)


Chicago police, protesters clash during bid to topple statue

Protesters trying to topple a Christopher Columbus statue in downtown Chicago’s Grant Park clashed with police who used batons to beat people and made at least a dozen arrests after they say protesters targeted them with fireworks, rocks and other items. The clash happened this past Friday (7/17) evening after at least 1,000 people tried to swarm the statue in a failed attempt to topple it following a rally in support of Black and Indigenous people. Police said 18 officers were injured and at least 12 people were arrested during the clash. Four protesters were also hurt during the confrontation, which led local elected officials and activists to condemn the officers’ tactics. The police department said in a statement that officers assembled in the park as the protesters converged there and were providing security and protecting their First Amendment right to peacefully assemble. It said that as demonstrators approached the statue some members of the crowd turned on the police and used the protest to attack officers with fireworks, rocks, frozen bottles, and other objects. (ABC News)


A swarm of flying ants stretched for miles over the UK and looked like rain on weather radar

The UK’s Met Office shared radar imagery that showed the ants flying over the southeast part of the country. “It’s not raining in London, Kent or Sussex, but our radar says otherwise,” it said in a tweet recently. It looked like rain on the radar, but a meteorologist with the country’s weather agency said it was “dry, hot and sunny” at the time. The swarm was visible on radar for about two hours. The forecasters’ satellites didn’t show enough clouds to produce rain in the area. They suspected insects because the particles didn’t look like raindrops and were longer than they are wide — like a bug. Their hunch was confirmed when people in the area started posting about the swarm with the hashtags #flyingants and #flyingantday. There were also reports along the eastern part of the country that did not show up on radar. The ants’ have become a summer tradition in Britain and many people call their annual appearance Flying Ant Day. The phenomenon occurs when young queen ants, followed by males, leave their nests to breed and start new colonies. The weather conditions have to be just right, which is why so many ants choose to take off at the same time. (The Independent)


Seattle police chief fires back at suggestion to lay off officers ‘out of order’

As the Seattle Police Department looks at the Seattle City Council’s demands to cut the department’s budget by 50%, police Chief Carmen Best fired back at a suggestion from a Council member to lay off officers out of order of seniority as a way to preserve the jobs of people of color. “We cannot do layoffs based on race,” the Chief said. Currently, a majority of the City Council supports defunding the Seattle Police Department’s budget by 50% in an effort to move some tasks away from the department and to fund community-led organizations. SPD released a detailed diversity breakdown of current officers and recruits to show the impact of that proposed cut. According to the policy, they would lay off the most recent hires first. SPD said that would mean laying off 46 Asian officers, 47 Black or African American officers, 56 Hispanic or Latino officers and 59 biracial or multiracial officers, among others, as well as 526 white officers. (KIRO)


Dollar General workers lock in man wanted in killing

Workers at a Dollar General store in Lake Charles, Louisiana recognized a convicted sex offender accused of killing two teenagers and kidnapping a third — and locked him in after quietly escorting other customers out. “Thank you Sallye Salter and Tiffany Cook, you both exemplified great character in a high pressure situation,” the Beauregard Parish Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post after the 51-year-old suspect was arrested. The suspect surrendered to police in the Beauregard Parish community of Ragley, about 20 miles north of Lake Charles, after the two workers alerted authorities. (My ArklaMiss)


Nigeria’s Zamfara state offers repentant bandits cows for AK-47s

It is an attempt to encourage them to give up a life of crime and live a normal life as responsible citizens, Zamfara Governor said. Motorcycle-riding armed bandits have been terrorising the state. Cows are valued by the Fulani herder community who have been accused of being behind a wave of attacks. However, members of the community have repeatedly rejected the allegations saying that they too were victims. An average cow in northern Nigeria costs about $260 while an AK-47 on the black market could cost as much as $1,200. “These bandits who choose to repent initially sold their cows to buy guns and now that they want a life free of criminality, we are asking them to bring us an AK-47 and get two cows in return, this will empower and encourage them,” according to a statement. (BBC)


Electronic Arts to remove Washington nickname, logo from Madden NFL 21

Game developer Electronic Arts will alter the upcoming release of Madden NFL 21 to remove logos and the team name of the Washington Redskins after the team announced forthcoming changes, an EA representative confirmed. The last-minute change to the popular football simulator game was first reported by Kotaku. Madden NFL 21 is set to release on August 25. “We are pleased to see Washington’s decision to change their team name and visual identity,” an EA representative said in a statement. “We are quickly working to update Madden NFL 21 to feature a generic Washington team, while we await final word on the updated team name and logo design.” (ESPN)


Punches, water balloons thrown in Taiwan parliament melee

Taiwanese politicians threw punches and water balloons inside the legislature, the third parliamentary brawl in a fortnight, over the nomination of the head of a top government watchdog. The Kuomintang, who are the main opposition in Taiwan’s parliament, has mounted a noisy campaign against the nomination of one person to head the Control Yuan, an independent government watchdog. Several KMT politicians knocked down voting booths inside the chamber to block DPP legislators from casting ballots over the nomination. KMT has accused the DPP of cheating in part of the vote on a nomination. About 100 KMT supporters outside parliament fought with police and some tried to break through barricades, calling on the DPP to withdraw the nomination. KMT politicians later threw water balloons at the speakers’ podium, forcing their DPP colleagues to don plastic raincoats and hold up cardboard shields. (RTE)


Uzbekistan is offering $3,000 to anyone who gets the coronavirus during a visit to the country

Uzbekistan is confident travelers won’t get the coronavirus when they visit. Over 33 million people live in the country, but with its swift lockdown approach, the country had just 19 reported coronavirus-related deaths. In fact, it’s so confident that the country launched the “Safe Travel Guaranteed” campaign, which offers visitors $3,000 if they get infected with the virus while traveling in Uzbekistan. The Uzbekistan President signed the decree. The $3,000 is the estimated cost of medical care to treat the coronavirus in the country. (Uzbekistan Travel)



Why this woman’s poo turned silver

A 69-year-old US woman showed up to an emergency department in Washington DC with a very strange complaint – she’d been doing silver-colored poos for two weeks, as well as being dizzy. Her wees were fine. The patient, who’d been battling colon cancer, was examined – as was her poo. Doctors found her poo contained ‘occult blood’ – blood in the feces that can’t be seen with the naked eye. It turned out the silver color was a mix of white poo, caused by jaundice, and black poo, the result of gastrointestinal bleeding. Jaundice, when it’s caused by an obstruction of the bile duct, can result in pale white feces. Gastrointestinal bleeding can put blood into the digestive tract, coming out in poo as black after it reacts with bacteria in the intestines and digestive enzymes. Mixing the two caused the strange silver color in the woman’s feces according to the case report. After a discussion of treatment options with her doctors, a decision was made to focus on her comfort. She was discharged home with hospice care. (New England Journal of Medicine)


Cannabis arrests in California down 27%, but racial disparities increase

The latest marijuana news reveals that the number of cannabis arrests in California was on a declining trend in 2019 in the age of legalization. However, one tendency remained constant, those arrests still target more Hispanics and Blacks compared to their white counterparts. According to the information released by the California Department of Justice earlier, there were 1,181 felony cannabis arrests in the state in 2019, down from 1,617 in 2018. That change represented a 27% decline within the first year of broad legalization. Demographically, Hispanics accounted for almost 42 percent of those arrests, followed by Blacks at 22 percent and whites at 21 percent. Other groups shared the remaining percentage points. (Grow Cola)


Monday Brings Us:

  • Get Out of the Doghouse Day (Third Monday)
  • Global Hug Your Kid Day (Third Monday)
  • Lollipop Day
  • Moon Day
  • Pennsylvania Day
  • Space Exploration Day
  • World Jump Day

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