Archive for August 22nd, 2012

August 22, 2012

Sinclair C5

Clive Sinclair

The Sinclair C5 is a battery electric vehicle invented by British entrepreneur Sir Clive Sinclair in the United Kingdom in 1985. The vehicle is a battery-assisted tricycle steered by a handlebar beneath the driver’s knees. Powered operation is possible making it unnecessary for the driver to pedal.

Its top speed of 15 miles per hour (24 km/h), is the fastest allowed in the UK without a driving licence. It is powered by a 200w or 250W motor. It sold for £399 plus £29 for delivery. It became an object of media and popular ridicule during 1980s Britain and was a commercial disaster, selling only around 17,000 units, although according to Sinclair, it was ‘the best selling electric vehicle’ until 2011 when the Nissan Leaf had sold over 20,000 units.

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August 22, 2012

Redneck Games

East Dublin, Georgia

The Redneck Games are held in East Dublin, Georgia annually. The games were started by the general manager of WQZY, Mac Davis, in response to a comment made by the media; that when the 1996 Olympic Games went to Atlanta, it would be held by a group of rednecks. Taking offense to this, Davis and some locals set up the annual Redneck Games to reinforce the stereotype the media held. In 2001, Drew Scott of Wild Country 96.5 ‘borrowed’ the games to set up a fundraising event for the Franklin County NY Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Some events that are held during the Redneck Games include: The cigarette flip; Bobbing for pig’s trotters; Seed spitting; Toilet seat throwing; Mud pit belly flop; Big-hair contest; Wet T-shirt contest; Armpit serenade; Bug zapping by spitball; Dumpster diving; and Hubcap hurling. For each of the events, a trophy is awarded: a half crushed, empty mounted beer can. The Minto Canadian Redneck Games in Minto, Ontario started in 2006. Events include: Mud Pit Slip & Slide; Bobbin’ for Pig’s Feet; Mud Pit Tug-of-War; Mud Pit Belly Flop Contest; Redneck Horseshoes; Hubcap Hurl; and Mud Pit Volleyball.

August 22, 2012

Here Comes Honey Boo Boo

Mama June

Here Comes Honey Boo Boo is an American reality series that debuted on TLC in 2012. It is a spinoff of ‘Toddlers & Tiaras,’ based around T&T contestant Alana ‘Honey Boo Boo’ Thompson and her family, who reside in rural McIntyre, Georgia. The series follows the Thompsons, focusing on the daily interactions between the family members and mother June’s attempts to enter Alana into beauty pageants. Other focal points in the series are the teen pregnancy of eldest daughter Anna, Jessica’s attempts to lose weight, as well as visits to the Redneck Games and auctions.

The ‘A.V. Club’ called the first episodes a ‘horror story posing as a reality television program,’ with others worrying about potential child exploitation. A reviewer for ‘Forbes’ criticized TLC as trying to ‘portray Alana’s family as a horde of lice-picking, lard-eating, nose-thumbing hooligans south of the Mason-Dixon line,’ stating that ‘it falls flat, because there’s no true dysfunction here, save for the beauty pageant stuff.’ ‘The Guardian’ also criticized the attempt to portray the Thompsons as something to ‘point and snicker at,’ saying, ‘none of the women or girls who participate in the show seems to hate themselves for their poverty, their weight, their less-than-urbane lifestyle, or the ways in which they diverge from the socially-acceptable beauty standard.’

August 22, 2012

Mindset List


The Mindset List is an annual compilation of the values that shape the worldview (or ‘mindset’) of students about 18 years old and entering college and, to a lesser extent, adulthood. It is co-authored by Ron Nief, ‘Public Affairs’ Director Emeritus, and Tom McBride, Professor of English and Keefer Professor of Humanities, both at Beloit College in Wisconsin.

It originated in 1997 as an e-mail forward, without author credits, passed on by then College Statistician Richard Miller to Ron Nief, who passed it on to peers at other schools. The first Beloit-created Mindset List appeared in the fall of 1998 after requests from peers who mistook the forward as having originated with Nief. It now appears every August as American first-year students enter college.

August 22, 2012


Depressive realism

Self-handicapping is the process by which people avoid effort in the hopes of keeping potential failure from hurting self-esteem. It was first theorized by Edward E. Jones and Steven Berglas, according to whom self-handicaps are obstacles created, or claimed, by the individual in anticipation of failing performance. Self-handicapping can be seen as a method of preserving self-esteem but it can also be used for self-enhancement and to manage the impressions of others.

This conservation or augmentation of self-esteem is due to changes in causal attributions or the attributions for success and failure that self-handicapping affords. There are two methods that people use to self-handicap: behavioral and claimed self-handicaps. People withdraw effort or create obstacles to successes so they can maintain public and private self-images of competence.

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