October 21, 2013

Stride after stride and stitch after stitch: David Babcock is now a candidate for the Guinness Book of World Records.     Photo: Balashova Ekaterina/Shutterstock

Man Sets Knitting-While-Running Record

The longest scarf knit mid-stride

During the Kansas City Marathon on Saturday, David Babcock broke the record for longest scarf knit while running. The red, orange, and purple scarf unfurls to 12 feet and 13/4 inches, about five and a half feet longer than the previous record set by Susie Hewer of six feet and nine inches.

Babcock, 41, decided to combine running and knitting three years ago, finding that both activities become tedious.

It sounds awkward, but the graphic design professor at the University of Central Missouri found a way to make it work. He uses sweat-resistant acrylic fibers in place of natural ones and cinches the scarf around his waist with a carbiner.

"I have a very smooth gait," he told The Kansas City Star, explaining that he has fallen only once while knitting and running—when he didn't see a pothole.

This was Babcock's first full marathon knitting, which he ran in 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 27 seconds for the Alzheimer's Association.

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Goblin Valley State Park     Photo: Alaskan Dude/Flickr

VIDEO: Utah Men Destroy Ancient Rock Formation

Police deciding whether to prosecute

Three Utah men demolished an ancient rock formation in Utah's Goblin Valley State Park this month. Glenn Taylor, who was leading a Boy Scott group, decided that a large boulder perched atop a thin strip of dirt was a safety hazard and needed to be pushed over, according to CNN. Two of Taylor's friends filmed and posted the event to YouTube, which included singing and high fives as the rock tumbled over. Police must now decide if the crime is worth being prosecuted.

Taylor's friend and cameraman, David Hall, can be heard singing and calling a play-by-play during the video.

We have now modified Goblin Valley, a new Goblin Valley exists… That's crazy that it was held up just by that little bit of dirt. Some little kid was about ready to walk down here and die and Glenn saved his life by getting the boulder out of the way. So it's all about saving lives here at Goblin Valley. Saving lives. That's what we're all about.

The deputy director of Utah State Parks and Recreation explained he had never seen one of the goblin rock formations roll from its pedestal in his 22 years on the job, reports CNN. The event has drawn an enormous amount of attention through social media and the YouTube video has well over four million views.

Taylor now faces additional scrutiny after it was made public that he filed a suit last month (before the incident) claiming he was suffering from "disability" and "impairment" from an auto accident four years ago, according to ABC News. "In the video I see a big strong guy who steps up to a 2,000 pound rock and dislodges it and I just think to myself, that guy doesn't have a bad back" said the man being sued by Taylor.

Asked if he would push the rock over again, Taylor responded "Absolutely, absolutely."

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Flying cars may be closer than you think.     Photo: Bob Jagendorf/Flickr

Flying Car Prototype Takes Off

Slovakian Aeromobil tests its first prototype

In 1940, Henry Ford said: "Mark my word: A combination airplane and motorcar is coming. You may smile, but it will come." And it may be here.

A prototype for a commercially available, street-legal flying car made its first flight recently. Called the Aeromobil Version 2.5, this sleek, 992-pound "rodable aircraft" comes from Aeromobil, a Slovakian company. A veritable flying car, the Aeromobil doesn't require special aviation fuel, and its petite frame allows it to fit into a standard parking spot. This steel and carbon fiber design helps it go up to 124 mph with a range of 430 miles.

Its lead designer, Stefan Klein, has worked on projects for Audi, BMW, and Volkswagen and has been working a car with lofty aspirations since the early 1990s. But there are a handful of start-ups also developing flying cars around the world. The US-based Terrafugia has a prototype with wing folding vertically like a Lamborghini's doors. PAL-V, a Dutch design, is a three-wheeled car that turns into a gyrocopter at the airport.

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A mega-fire is expected to form if two large wildfires merge in New South Wales this week.     Photo: art-pho/ Shutterstock.com

Australian Wildfires Worsen

State of emergency declared

One man has died and more than 200 properties have been destroyed by a series of wildfires burning across the Australian state of New South Wales. The blazes, which number more than 60 and include one that stretches 190 miles, are among the most destructive to ever strike this part of Australia, known for the scenic Blue Mountains. 

Fire danger is expected to increase this week, as high temperatures and strong winds fuel flames. According to the Huffington Post, there's a strong possibility that several fires may even burn into one another, creating one massive wildfire.

“I don’t think I’ve ever used the word mega-fire,” Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said, “But … there’s every likelihood that in the forecast weather conditions that these fires, particularly in the back end of the mountains, will merge at some point.”

A declaration of emergency has been made, giving officials power to deal with circumstances as they arise. “These powers include the right to order the public to leave or to enter an area,"Premier Barry O’Farrell told reporters, "The right to shore up or demolish a building and of course, it also prevents people from disobeying an order given under these powers.” 

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