Sideswipe: April 28: Nuclear heritage site?

Chernobyl world heritage site?

Thirty-five years ago, the world’s worst nuclear disaster occurred at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Pripyat, Ukraine — the reactors at the plant exploded during a mismanaged safety test. It’s thought up to 54 workers and firemen died in the immediate aftermath, thousands developed illnesses due to radiation poisoning and 50,000 people were evacuated. The now-abandoned city has become a major tourist hotspot for the country. Now, the country is applying for it to be a Unesco World Heritage site, a status designated to landmarks or areas with legal protections that have cultural, historical, scientific, or another form of significance. Notable sites include Stonehenge, Machu Picchu, and the Great Barrier Reef. The Government wants to develop the exclusion zone as a tourist destination, officials told Reuters. “The importance of the Chernobyl zone lays far beyond Ukraine’s borders … It is not only about commemoration, but also history and people’s rights.” If the application is eventually approved, it would make the power station the most recent building rather than a natural feature to make the list. The current title-holder is the Sydney Opera House, which was opened in 1973.

Great inventions that never took off

Charles Adler, Jr. of Baltimore invented a horn for aeroplanes that was granted a patent in 1947. I imagine the last thing you’d want to hear as your flight is cruising at 30,000 feet is the pilot suddenly honking the horn. Though, of course, the horn was intended for small planes, not passenger jets. Adler himself used it to nag his wife by flying low over his house and honking the horn so that she’d know to start preparing his dinner.

Did a rooster write this?

Did you know

1. William Wrigley, founder of Wrigley’s Gum, invented direct mail marketing. In 1915 he mailed a pack of gum to every person in the phone directory in the United States.
2. Muhammad Ali earned a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame because he was an entertainer as well as a sportsman. It is mounted on a wall because he didn’t want the name of Muhammad to be walked on.
3. More Americans are members of Amazon Prime than are members of a church, mosque or synagogue.
4. “Every breath you take” by The Police is used as on-hold music by the hotline of Russia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs.
5. Naples, Italy is creating a DNA database of all its resident dogs. Any dog poo found left on the sidewalk will be tested against the database, and the owner of the dog will be sent a bill for €500 (NZ$835).

Meanwhile, over in the UK…

“Over on Facebook Debbie, who is thrilled that beauty salons are open again and is feeling fab now that she’s had her Botox and lip fillers redone, is now busy mocking people who have had the Covid vaccine for ‘being sheep’ and putting ‘Christ knows what’ into their bodies.” (Via Amanda (@Pandamoanimum)

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