Welcome to my blog. I write about fitting in, sticking out, and missing the motherland as a serial foreigner.

December 5th, outsourced

Pianograms! - neat visualizations of note frequency in songs. [HT Andrew]

Postcards from Pripyat, Chernobyl. Haunting. [HT Ashi]

How I drank urine and bat blood to survive - great story with a happy ending! [HT Jeremy]

The Economist has a handy chart of the world's longest commercial flights. I've flown the third- and sixth-longest by mileage (DXB-LAX and DXB-SFO), but I wish they'd do a chart by duration instead. Nobody gets off a plane and says wow, that flight was 13,037 kilometers!

Those remains really are Richard III's...and they reveal that somewhere in there, someone's father was not who they thought. I have seen this reported so many varying ways, I'm not sure what the exact conclusion is. Some articles are saying this affects the current royal family, but it doesn't, right? Because Richard III is from a totally different branch, right? Who's up on their English royal dynasties?

Here are some great family photo fails.

Maybe this will get its own blog post, but on Monday, an American teacher was stabbed to death in a bathroom at a mall in Abu Dhabi, by a woman wearing abaya and niqab, no less. Fortunately, they caught the murderer yesterday. The Abu Dhabi police have put out the surveillance video as well as video of their arrest of the suspect. They also set the video to the soundtrack of - wait for it - The Dark Knight. Very strange all around. [Content advisory for the video - they included still photos of the crime scene that don't show the body or anything but are still pretty horrific.] Edited to add: I'm pretty sure that's a veiled female SWAT agent at 5:30 which, if I were to ever use a certain term that starts with a b and ends with double s, IT WOULD BE NOW.

The best kids' water bottle for school (and elsewhere)

Putting camping on hold