New Plymouth

Vol. 279-2  June 10, 2024

Ph Viraj 020 4118 0906

Everybody's Talking

Antique surprise: Thirty-five years ago, Flora Steel snagged an intriguing brooch for a mere 20. Unbeknownst to her, it was a Gothic Revival creation by Victorian-era designer William Burges. After spotting a similar brooch on Antiques Roadshow, Steel sent pictures of her own piece of jewellery to an auctioneer, who valued it at 15,000. Her find marked the third such discovery, with another viewer of the television auction show having earned 31,000 for a similar find. Burges crafted these unique pieces in the mid-1800s, blending Japanese and medieval influences. With each find, history is unveiling its hidden gems.

Big reversal: Richard Plaud, of Montpellier-de-Mdillan in western France, spent eight years creating a replica of the Eiffel Tower out of matchsticks, using more than 22kg of glue. He hoped to earn recognition by Guinness World Records. However, Guinness initially dismissed his 7.19m tall model. That was because the 706,900 matchsticks he used were not the standard sort that Guinness expected him to use. Eventually, though, Guinness officials changed their minds and did award him a place in their records as having made the tallest matchstick structure in the world. They said his attempt at the 145 scale model was officially amazing.

Hitching a ride: Helicopter crews returning from flights always do post-flight inspections. A helicopter crew with the U.S. Coast Guard in Clearwater, Florida, was no exception. But the crew found something they did not expect to see a snake was napping happily on the tailwheel. It was like a scene from the movie, Snakes on a Plane. Lucky for everyone, the 0.6m long corn snake made a quick exit. The breed can grow to be up to 1.2m in length, and are also called chicken snakes and red rat snakes. No word on how the visitor got on the helicopter or whether or not the animal was fined for trespassing.

Spilled milk: There must have been a lot of jokes about not crying over spilled milk, but in reality, it wasn't a laughing matter at all. In Auburn, Massachusetts USA, a tanker carrying 37,854 litres of fresh milk rolled over on the highway. All that delicious white milk, along with plenty of diesel fuel from the truck, spilled onto the on-ramp of the Massachusetts turnpike. What a milky mess! Fortunately, no injuries were reported, but the accident delayed traffic while the nearby Auburn Fire Rescue Department worked to remove the spilled liquids from the roadway.

Quotable Quotes

Love sought is good, but given unsought is better. ~ William Shakespeare

Dreams and reality are opposites. Action synthesizes them. ~ Assata Shakur


1. How many pipes are in the typical Scottish bagpipe?

2. Nephophobia is the fear of kidneys, winter, or clouds?

3. A diadromous fish can exist in both fresh and saltwater - T/F?

4. In the children's books, what is the name of Babar the Elephant's wife?

5. How many toes does an ostrich have?

Your Weekly Horoscope

ariesAries (March 21 - April 20)
What issues have you worked on to overcome in your life? Consider how you might help others going through something similar. Your experience could resonate with them. Lucky numbers: 8, 14, 22, 25, 35, 38.
libraLibra (Sept 24 - Oct 23)
A major Libra life theme is to create balance within and with others. Releasing what no longer serves you may be important during the next year to achieve this endeavour. Lucky numbers: 4, 5, 6, 15, 16, 19.
taurusTaurus (April 21- May 21)
A midweek insight may point you toward a new opportunity. Consistent with your Taurus nature, you might want to ana­lyse all the pros and cons before thinking of proceeding. Lucky numbers: 2, 12, 16, 22, 28, 38.
scorpioScorpio (Oct 24- Nov 22)
At midweek, practical research may enhance your intuitive insights. Dig deep into the facts of the situation. The result from these ideas could be appealing to others. Lucky numbers: 10, 16, 17, 20, 21, 33.
geminiGemini (May 22- June 21)
The end of the week may be a good time to go within and connect with your spirit. Your efforts might mainly be focused on your relationship to yourself or to others. Lucky numbers: 13, 14, 17, 18, 35, 40.
sagittariusSagittarius (Nov23-Dec21)
For the next few weeks, you may be in a stale­mate about something. If you focus on your beliefs, a solution might become evident. Otherwise, wait for this period to pass. Lucky numbers: 6, 12, 16, 18, 20, 27.
cancerCancer (June 22 - July 23)
Have you recently felt flooded with a lot of new infor­mation? If you are not sure what action to take, you might want to consider waiting another week or two to sort it out. Lucky numbers: 5, 23, 27, 31, 32, 40.
capricornCapricorn (Dec 22- Jan 20)
At midweek, you may find yourself annoyed about a relationship. This might pass in a few days, but could it be a chance to examine any dysfunc­tion in this area? Lucky numbers: 9, 11, 18, 27, 36, 38.
leoLeo (July 24 - Aug 23)
Do you have an endeavour or idea that could use the assis­tance of others? Now may be a good time to make your pitch, but be sure the project will help them too. Lucky numbers: 12, 14, 15, 32, 37, 39.
aquariusAquarius (Jan 21- Feb 19)
This is a week when you may want to think things through before you speak or react to events. Con­sider that you could regret any impulsive actions you take now. Lucky numbers: 7, 12, 20, 21, 26, 30.
virgoVirgo (Aug 24 - Sept 23)
Is this the time to revamp your diet or exercise rou­tine to become healthier? The middle of the week may provide additional discipline to initiate a new plan to put into action. Lucky numbers: 11, 16, 18, 19, 29, 31.
piscesPisces (Feb 20 - March 20)
At midweek, you may find yourself shuffling through many options. Perhaps consider waiting to make decisions until the fog lifts, which could begin next week. Lucky numbers: 3, 17, 26, 30, 34, 35.
Lucky numbers for the week: Lucky numbers this week: This week's odds favour Leo winners with the luckiest number being 15.

Did you know

What a fight: Each August, 20,000 people go to Buol, near Valencia, Spain, for the world's biggest food fight. Called La Tomatina, the fight uses the local tomato bounty, and lasts about an hour.

Hidden people: In Iceland, believing in elves is totally acceptable. Icelanders believe elves exist throughout their country. They call them the hulduflk, or hidden people, a term that dates back centuries.

Candy mounds: On Bohol, an island in the Philippines, over 1,260 low, grass-covered hills are spread over 50 square kilometres. In the dry season, the grass turns brown, hence their name Chocolate Hills.

Cricket changemakers: Founded in 2007, the Cricket Warriors are Maasai youth from Laikipia, Kenya. They host cricket camps to encourage peers to tackle social problems. They see cricket as an agent of change.

Yummy seafood dish: A famous dish of Singapore is Singapore Chili Crab. Its signature sauce contains ingredients that hit the taste buds with a bang, including chilies, garlic, soybean paste, ginger, and shallots.

On the lighter side

Nit: I just flew in from Europe. Wit: I bet your arms are tired.

Knock! Knock! Who's there? Randy. Randy who? Randy mile in eight minutes!

Why did the potato chip stop the car? There was a dip in the road.

Show me a farmer raising sheep for wool and I'll show you a shear cropper.

I took up gardening as a hobby, but I only grew tired.


1. 5 2. Clouds 3. True 4. Celeste 5. 4 (2 per foot)