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Mindful : December 2016
16 mindful December 2016 This summer a Phila- delphia resident beat the heat by building a pool—in a dumpster. The receptacle, which was power washed and lined with tarps, was filled with 3,000 gallons of water from a nearby fire hydrant, forcing the city to issue a warning against illegally tapping city water, and, um, swimming in dumpsters. ● A Chinese man tried to sneak his pet turtle on a flight by passing it off as fast food. The animal was placed between two buns and wrapped in paper from KFC. When discov- ered, he told airport officials he didn’t want to leave his beloved pet at home. People waiting for hours to buy cronuts, the popu- lar croissant-donut creation of New York pastry chef Domi- nique Ansel, weren’t about to lose their spot in line—even when EMTs came to remove a dead body on a bench in their midst. While air pollution chokes major cities throughout China, opportunistic entre- preneurs are cashing in by selling “clean” air from the likes of Aus- tralia’s Bondi Beach, the English country- side, and the Cana- dian Rockies. Each can delivers up to 150 “deep inhalations,” and costs bet ween $15 and $100. Residents of Hugo, Colorado, were warned not to drink city water when it was found to contain trace levels of THC, the psy- choactive ingredient found in marijuana. The state legalized recreational use of pot, now its largest cash crop, in 2012. A Syrian refugee living in Germany returned 50,000 euros (about $56,000) he discov- ered inside a donated dresser, citing his Muslim faith for keep- ing him honest. Local immigration officials called him a “hero.” Scientists discovered a new type of fire that can clean up oil spills. “Blue whirl,” a kind of low-combustion flame, quickly consumes surface oil without releasing harmful emissions into the atmosphere or ocean. Dogs from a Santa Barbara County animal shelter got a welcome reprieve when they joined a high school cross-country team for a training run. The idea was to help students earn service credits, and was such a hit with both the kids and the dogs that the team plans to do it again. Inmates in a court holding cell in Texas broke out of their con- finement to help their jailer, who suffered a heart attack. The prisoners yelled and banged on doors to alert officers, who were able to administer CPR. South Korean soldiers stationed at the DMZ are learning to de-stress—with ballet. The practice has been so popular among the troops that a few even performed in Swan Lake. Mindful–Mindless Our take on who’s paying attention and who’s not Illustrations by Jessica Rae Gordon Suggestions for Mindful–Mindless? Send them to