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Study finds the homeless also carry extra pounds around Add to ...

Homeless and obese

“A new study dispels the myth that, in general, the homeless are starving and underweight,” says SciTechDaily.com. “Researchers from Harvard Medical School and Oxford University report that obesity is just as common among the homeless as it is in the general population. One reason, the authors suggest, could be because cheap, instantly satisfying foods often contain high levels of fat and sugar. Another reason could be that bodies experiencing chronic food shortages adapt by storing fat reserves.”

Nothing will be on display

“London’s Hayward Gallery will gather together 50 ‘invisible’ works by leading figures such as Andy Warhol, Yves Klein and Yoko Ono for its display of works you cannot actually see,” The Daily Telegraph reports. “Invisible Art about the Unseen 1957-2012 opens on June 12 and includes an empty plinth, a canvas of invisible ink and an unseen labyrinth. It includes work and documents from French artist Klein who pioneered invisible works in the late 1950s with his concept of the ‘architecture of air.’ Also in the exhibition will be Warhol’s work Invisible Sculpture – dating from 1985 – which consists of an empty plinth, on which he had once briefly stepped, one of many explorations of the nature of celebrity. Another, 1000 Hours of Staring is a blank piece of paper at which artist Tom Friedman has stared repeatedly over the space of five years, and another by the same artist Untitled (A Curse) is an empty space that has been cursed by a witch.”

Part-time Olympic runners

“An international delivery service is turning to a team of runners to beat the London Olympics crush,” says Associated Press. “With close to five million visitors expected for the July 27 to Aug. 12 Games, along with stringent security measures and special Olympic lanes reserved for athletes and employees, getting around is expected to be a challenge. So German express delivery service DHL is enlisting London-based JogPost’s team of foot couriers to help make sure packages get to their recipients on time. JogPost co-founder J.J. Harding described his 400-odd roster of largely part-time runners as ‘congestion-busters.’ ”

Positive pressure

“Social websites have become the happiest places on Earth: the vast majority of photos on Facebook show people smiling and having fun,” writes Stanford University sociologist Clifford Nass in Pacific Standard magazine. “While online sites were initially a place to express frustration and sadness in a safe environment (after all, people couldn’t see you), users are now under some pressure to avoid anything but positive comments: statements about negative emotions are much less ‘liked’ and shared, especially when posted by sad people. … The predominance of positive comments on social media sites encourages emotion[al]atrophy in another way: positive emotions are much simpler than negative emotions, which require more processing in more parts of the brain. Negative emotions are better remembered and, therefore, more strongly affect memories of events; and they trigger much deeper physical responses.”

Why are you smiling at me?

“We’ve all been in that situation where you’re blissfully engrossed in a new subway advertisement and you suddenly notice the crazy person in the corner seems to be smiling at you,” says the blog peer-reviewed by my neurons. . “But you’re not sure. Maybe they’re merely pleased by the informative [ad]to your left. The bad news is that there’s no magical trick to figure out where they’re looking, and the really bad news is that research shows whatever you do think is likely to be biased by the person’s facial expression. Specifically, we tend to think smiling faces are looking at us and angry faces are looking away from us.”

Hijinks with the yearbook

At Presentation High School, an all-girl Catholic institution in San Jose, Calif., eight seniors have the surname Nguyen, reports the Mercury News. Alexandra, Angela, Angelica, Elizabeth, Emily, Isabella, Madeline, and Vi Nguyen thought it would be funny to have their yearbook quotes, below their pictures, spell out a message: “We know,” “what,” “you’re,” thinking,” “and,” “no,” “we’re,” “not related.” (In fact, the group includes a pair of twin sisters.) The message has gone viral, creating a media frenzy they are calling “Nguyen-sanity.”

THOUGHT DU JOUR

“It is much easier to be critical than to be correct.”

– Benjamin Disraeli (1804-81), British prime minister

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