Friday, November 13, 2020

TikTok user appears to cook boyfriend’s steak in toaster

A young woman on TikTok recently posted a video in which she alleges to have cooked a steak in her toaster. The footage was uploaded to the social media platform by a user with the name Itsmeju1iette, with a caption reading, “Cooking a steak for my boyfriend.” But instead of heating up a frying pan or even a broiler, she shoves the steaks into a two-slot toaster. The footage starts with two cuts of what appear to be sirloin steak being placed into a toaster. The woman pushes the lever down, and the two steaks are then shown sizzling away inside the active toaster. She later appears to pull the two now-cooked pieces of steak from the toaster, covers them in steak sauce and takes a bite. The woman does not show whether the toaster was able to cook the meat all the way through, or if it simply browned the outside, leaving the inside raw. Since it was originally posted, the unusual cooking video has been viewed over 1.6 million times. But, of course, it raised some concerns. This isn’t the first time that the user’s channel has published a bizarre cooking hack. She’s also uploaded footage of herself cooking a burger on an iron, attempting to cook hot dogs in the dryer (the results were apparently not good), and even boiling ice to make “gourmet” water. After uploading the toasted steak video, the added another video where she cooks meatballs in a coffee maker. (itsmeju1iette Tik Tok


Boomers lead in job seeking optimism

How confident are job seekers in the U.S. right now? That depends on one’s generation. Boomer job hunters (ages 56 to 74) are markedly more confident than counterparts across Gen X (ages 40 to 55), millennials (ages 24 to 39) and Gen Z (age 23 and under). A big part of boomers’ edge in job seeking comes from their reported optimism about their financial outlook, likely because they have built more financial cushion and have fewer day-to-day expenses than younger generations. (LinkedIn)


Moms sue over work bias amid virus

The pandemic is pushing women, especially those working from home with younger children, to quit their jobs in record numbers. The flexibility that many companies offered their employees in March is still needed amid continued school and day care shutdowns, which for employers further disrupts business. Law firms say at least 40 lawsuits have been filed against companies by parents alleging discrimination, with “economic consequences … [that could] impoverish women and children for decades,” according to one expert. Over 600,000 women left the workforce just during the month of September, compared to 78,000 men, per government data. (Bloomberg)


709,000 Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, down from 757,000 a week earlier

First-time unemployment claims have been dropping for four weeks running, but they are still well above the numbers reported before the pandemic. As of October 24, nearly 21.2 million Americans were receiving some kind of unemployment assistance. That marks a decrease of 374,179 from a week earlier but compares to just 1.45 million a year ago. Although unemployment claims hit a seven-month low last week, economists are concerned that Congress’ failure to pass a new stimulus package, and the rapid increase in COVID-19 cases, will lead to job losses over the coming weeks. The unemployment rate is now at 6.9%, down from a high of 14.7% in April. (CNBC)


Are ghost kitchens the future?

Once a curious addition to the food delivery craze, ghost kitchens have taken new prominence amid the pandemic. A report by Restaurant Dive argues that these kitchens, delivery-only cooking warehouses, essentially, may play a prominent role in the food landscape of the future given the explosion of delivery apps, a movement toward convenience and the effects and after-effects of the virus on the dine-in restaurant space. (Restaurant Dive)


Facebook announced it will keep its political advertising ban in place for at least another month due to the continued delay of election results

Facebook first announced in October that it would ban ads after the polls closed on Nov. 3 in order to limit the spread of misinformation and prevent candidates from claiming premature victories. Google has also continued a similar ban on political ads, having reportedly told advertisers it is unlikely the ban will be lifted in November or December. In October, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg raised concerns over the possibility of civil unrest due to the election. He also outlined steps Facebook was taking during the election, such as helping register new voters, providing accurate information, and banning content from conspiracy groups like QAnon. Democrats have expressed concern that Facebook and Google’s bans will inhibit their ability to get their message out ahead of a vital runoff election in Georgia that will determine control of the Senate. (Reuters)


The day of her 30th birthday, a woman rescued a sick swam in an ordeal that took several hours and involved traveling by foot, car, and subway with a 17-pound bird

Cordova-Rojas spotted the bird in Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, in Queens, New York. She quickly realized that the bird was in distress because she used to work as an animal care manager. She approached the swam and wrapped her coat around the bird. In order to get the swam treatment, she had to take three car rides, and travel both by foot and subway with her bike in tow. The swan is receiving treatment at Wild Bird Fund in Manhattan. Carers say the bird may be suffering from lead poisoning. “That was kind of the perfect culmination of my 20s,” the woman said. “It was the perfect birthday present to be in nature and be able to save a life.” (The New York Times)


Churn returns to job market

In a sign of improving economic health, more Americans voluntarily left their jobs in September than at any other time during the pandemic. According to the Labor Department’s Job Openings and Turnover Survey, some 3 million quit their jobs, the most since February, pushing the rate to 2.1% from 2% in August. At the same time, layoffs and discharges declined to 1.33 million from 1.53 million, while openings rose to 6.44 million from 6.35 million. (Bloomberg)


UPS is lifting a ban on employees growing beards

Up until now, the delivery company had strict rules regulating the appearance of its workers. Afros and braids were not allowed, piercings were restricted, and tattoos had to be covered. There was even a rule banning men from growing mustaches covering their upper lips. These employee appearance regulations have now been removed. The changes are part of UPS’ efforts to “celebrate diversity rather than corporate restrictions,” the company said.  They come after more than 9,000 people signed a petition asking the company to relax its dress code. UPS said that it decided to loosen the rules after its new CEO “listened to feedback from employees.” UPS employs 500,000 workers globally. In 2018, UPS agreed to pay $4.9m to settle a religious discrimination lawsuit over the prohibition on beards and hair length. (The Wall Street Journal)


An Israeli company is set to launch an audio device that streams sound straight into people’s ears, without the need for headphones

The device created by Noveto Systems relies on ultrasonic waves to create sound pockets that hover around the user’s ears. It works like a speaker that follows the listener around but produces a sound that no one else can hear. Beta testers describe the sensation of trying the device for the first time as “straight out of a sci-fi movie.” The SoundBeamer 1.0 desktop device is out now, but a smaller version will be launched before the end of 2021. (Associated Press)


A new facial recognition system can recognize individual grizzly bears, which could help improve conservation and wildlife management.

It was able to identify specific bears at an accuracy rate of 84%. The AI-based system comes from Silicon Valley software developers Ed Miller and Mary Nguyen, who teamed with the University of Victoria biologists on the effort. The researchers trained the AI with 3,740 bear faces and then used unsupervised learning to identify patterns within a dataset of 935 bear photos. The deep learning system locates a bear’s face based on characteristics like their eyes, ears, and nose tip. It rotates the face “to extract, encode, and classify facial features.” The system could be incorporated with cameras in wildlife areas to identify a bear and track his or her movements. This could help stave off humans from bear habitats and do better population assessments, among other uses. (The New York Times)


Man arrested after drive-thru meltdown over lack of lettuce

A 49-year-old man in Largo, Florida was arrested after causing a commotion in a Checkers drive-thru, throwing a fit over the lack of lettuce for his sandwich. On November 4, the Police Department responded to a call from the Checkers after employees got scared when the man beat on the drive-thru window and screamed at them, furious that the restaurant didn’t have any leafy greens for his order. The disgruntled customer’s meltdown caused the workers to fear for their safety and for the other diners inside, per a criminal complaint. When authorities arrived, he was reportedly uncooperative and denied the allegations of erratic behavior. He also refused to show police his driver’s license. When an officer moved to place him in custody, the customer initially resisted, before conceding when handcuffed. He now faces charges of disorderly conduct and resisting an officer without violence following the drive-thru drama. (WKMG)


Apophis asteroid, nicknamed ‘God of Chaos,’ is speeding up

An asteroid that has been nicknamed after the Egyptian God of Chaos is speeding up, scientists recently revealed. Scientifically known as 99942 Apophis, the massive, 1,120-foot-wide space rock will fly within 23,441 miles above Earth’s surface on April 13, 2029, as well as in 2036. However, it’s the space rock’s flyby in 2068 that may be impacted by the slight alteration in its previously predicted orbit, due to the Yarkovsky effect, that has scientists talking. “We have known for some time that an impact with Earth is not possible during the 2029 close approach,” said one of the study’s authors, University of Hawaiʻi Institute for Astronomy astronomer in a statement. “The new observations we obtained with the Subaru telescope earlier this year were good enough to reveal the Yarkovsky acceleration of Apophis, and they show that the asteroid is drifting away from a purely gravitational orbit by about 170 meters per year, which is enough to keep the 2068 impact scenario in play.” The chances of 99942 Apophis impacting Earth are still low, previously calculated at about 1 in 150,000 by the Center for Near-Earth Studies, but it’s enough to give scientists a pause for concern. (University of Hawaii)


Friday Kicks Out With:

  • Friday The 13
  • Indian Pudding Day
  • Sandwich Day
  • World Kindness Day

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