Dirty Deeds Around the Christmas Tree

Brenda Lee's 1958 song "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" is enjoying a surge of popularity this holiday season, but what it really needs is some rock lyrics. Bill McClintock is here to remix the song in a way you'd never expect, which is what he does. Imagine the Christmas tune with the lilting voice of Bon Scott, the late singer for AC/DC, singing their 1976 song "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap." Concrete shoes, cyanide, TNT, neckties, contracts, high voltage -how festive! I am always surprised to hear isolated vocals from a familiar tune, and curious as to how they are available, and I'm even more surprised to hear them mesh so well with another song that is so different. This one is destined to become a Christmas classic. And don't they all look so impossibly young in the video? Scott was only around 29 when the video was recorded, and the other band members were pretty close in age.

Woman Who Bullied Chiptole Worker Sentenced to 2 Months Working in Fast Food

In September, Rosemary Hayne expressed her displeasure at the service that she was receiving from Emily Russell, an employee of a Chipotle restaurant in Parma, Ohio. She threw (1) a temper tantrum and (2) a bowl of food at Russell.

This incident was recorded and soon went viral. Police arrested Hayne for misdemeanor assault. Last week, CNN reports, Judge Timothy Gilligan sentenced Hayne to 180 days in jail. He suspended half of that sentence, leaving her with 90 days. She could choose to serve either the full 90 days in jail or just 30 days in jail and 60 days of working in a fast food restaurant. Judge Gilligan suggested that Hayne personally experience what it's like to work in the high pressure environment of the food service industry.

Hayne humbly accepted the offer and is now looking for a job to fulfill that requirement.

-via Instapundit

Christmas Pickle and Hot Dog Pie

Would you like a slice of Merry Glizzmas Pie? This is a holiday dessert from The Vulgar Chef (previously at Neatorama) who brings us constant abominations like the Twinkie hot dog, Spam cookies, and gravy pancakes.

His recipe for Merry Glizzmas Pie is so simple that it's just shown in a video. Lay your pickles and hot dog pieces in a pie crust and glue them all together with plain gelatin. Garnish with Reddi Wip and crushed candy cane. It even shows him eating it! If you find yourself, like me, obligated to cook for a dozen events during December, bringing this would be a good way to insure you'll never be asked for a cooked contribution ever again. Just be warned that you'll be bringing the whole thing home with you, because it's "clear" what's in this pie, so no one will want to try it. -via reddit

(Image credit: The Vulgar Chef)

Mysterious Tire Slasher in Italian Village Revealed

The town of Vastogirardi only has 600 residents. If anyone from outside had done something suspicious, then it would have been obvious to the people in town. So, when a series of slashed tires occurred, the residents knew that it must have been someone within the village.

It all started in July, when a few parked cars had their tires slashed. Since it happened more than once, people thought somebody must have run afoul with the mafia or neighbors were having a nasty spat with one another.

When another tire-slashing incident happened in late October, the police decided to intervene. They installed surveillance cameras to catch the culprit in the act. Just last week, the footage revealed who was slashing people's tires. It was a dog named Billy.

According to the vets, this may be a sign that Billy has a severe case of gingivitis, and biting at the tires relieved him from the pain it caused. If it is proven that Billy had done all the tire-slashing since July, his owner will have to compensate the car owners who have been inconvenienced by Billy's behavior. -via Boing Boing

(Image credit: Sebastian Huxley/Unsplash)

Why This Ancient Graveyard Has No Corpses

Archaeologists have been wondering for three decades why a gravesite in northern Finland bears all the signs that point to it being a graveyard yet no corpses could be found. The Tainiaro site was first discovered in 1959, but it wasn't until 1984 when the first archaeologists visited it for research.

When they went to study the area, they found thousands of artifacts and as many as 127 pits that seemed to have been dug out for burial. However, having found no traces of bones or other human remains, they simply concluded that the holes were there as part of a ritual of some sort.

Now, a new team of archaeologists led by Aki Hakonen have found the reason why no human remains were left in the graves. They conducted a soil test which showed that the soil was acidic to the point that even human bones would dissolve over time. This would also explain why many artifacts remained, since these were more difficult to break down.

To confirm their hypothesis, the team suggested conducting more tests to see if there's any residue of human DNA. If DNA is found, then the Tainiaro would be one of the largest burial sites in Northern Europe.

(Image credit: Tuija Laurén; Finnish Heritage Agency; Antiquity Publications Ltd)

The Origins of the 'Woman Yelling at Cat' Meme

When it comes to memes, there are some known for their versatility and adaptability to various ironic situations or comedic contrasts. One meme that has become ubiquitous is the "woman yelling at a cat" meme, because of the juxtaposition between the two emotions being projected. But what was the origin of this meme?

The first panel can be traced back to Taylor Armstrong in a 2011 episode of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. The second panel is from Smudge the white cat, who had already been circulating online before he was mashed together with Armstrong's raw emotional outburst.

It was the user @MISSINGEGIRL, in 2019, who had thought of combining these two to make the meme as we know it today. The meme has also inspired different versions to pop up including this Ukiyo-e style illustration by Reddit user griffinisland, Alexander Petela's Greek pottery style illustration, EnvySkort's anime version, as well as a medieval version of the meme.

(Image credit: Know Your Meme)

Are Ice Baths and Cold Showers Good for You?

Many people have reported getting health benefits from taking a plunge in ice-cold water, saying that it can help boost one's immune system, relax the muscles, and helps with cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.

I have experienced taking cold showers, though not of my own volition. Although I don't have any scientific proof of its benefits, I can say that it somehow helped me develop some kind of resistance to frigid temperatures. Then again, I spent many winters without proper heating, so that may have contributed to my increased tolerance to the cold.

Still, when researchers looked into the studies that claim health benefits from cold water plunges, what they found was that the most solid research involved athletes who were taking ice baths. Those studies suggest that ice baths could help with muscle repair by reducing the recovery time after a workout.

If you are thinking of trying out cold plunges or ice baths, then it would be best to consult a health professional first as it comes with risks. Apart from hypothermia and frostbite, the heart might experience cold shock response which can trigger arrhythmias or even heart attacks.

(Image credit: Mika Ruusunen/Unsplash)

"The Wexford Carol", Ireland's Oldest Christmas Carol

We often categorize Christmas carols into things that are only for children, along with many traditions that go with the holiday season. Carols are probably only things we will hear from church choirs or from choral groups who are out caroling, and we generally don't pay much attention to them, probably because they've become too familiar or repetitive.

America Magazine has a podcast titled "Hark! The stories behind our favorite Christmas carols" where they search for the origins of some well-known, timeless, and beloved Christmas carols. Apparently, some carols have a storied past.

For example, "Carol of the Bells" was originally a Ukrainian folk song with political ramifications, which caused the martyrdom of its author and composer. "Silent Night" had been sung during the two world wars as a sort of truce to allow soldiers a momentary respite. It was even sung to former president George H.W. Bush right before he died.

Ireland too has its own Christmas carol, and it's one that has been passed down orally for centuries. When it originated is up for debate, but the important thing is that the organist and choir director of St. Aidan's Cathedral, W. H. Grattan Flood, had written it down in 1928 for the next generations to remember it.

The song is called "The Wexford Carol", although to be more specific, it originated from Enniscorthy, a town in County Wexford, Ireland. Though named after the county where they live, it seems that none of the residents know much about it. The video above is a cover done by Alison Krauss and Yo-Yo Ma in English, but it is also beautifully sung in Irish. -via Kottke

(Video credit: YoYoMaVEVO)

This is the Carúl Loch Garman.

(Video credit: Vicki Sands)

5 Ways to Get Rid of Earworms

"I just can't get you out of my head" goes that very familiar Kylie Minogue song and it stays in your head rent-free on repeat. We've all experienced earworms. They're sometimes called brainworms or stuck song syndrome. Sometimes they can be annoying if you don't like the song, and other times, it's just annoying when you hear the song over and over in your head, but you don't even remember where you heard it, or what song it is.

What is it about these earworms and why do we get them? According to music psychologists, the auditory cortex, the part of our brain that perceives tone and auditory imagery, is responsible for why we experience earworms. When we hear a catchy song, the brain latches onto it, and even when we aren't actively hearing the song, it remains inside our heads and replays.

There have been some claims saying that people with ADHD or OCD experience earworms more often, but that's a misconception. It's completely normal for people to have earworms as often as once a week. Studies have shown that people with high openness to experience tend to have more earworms than usual.

Other studies that looked into people with obsessive-compulsive traits found that the types of earworms they experience are more disturbing and may be on the same category as musical obsessions and musical hallucinations, which are completely different from the typical earworms.

So, how do we get rid of the songs stuck in our head? Some suggest to listen to the whole song from start to finish. This allows our brain to complete the loop and find closure. Of course, not everybody finds this method effective. It might even worsen the situation.

Other methods include shifting your brain's attention toward something else, or replacing the song with another song. And if those still don't work, you can try chewing gum. And if these still don't work, we'll just have to accept that it'll be there for a while. It'll go away eventually.

(Image credit: Mark Rohan/Unsplash)

An Album Cover Battle Between the Beatles and the Rolling Stones

One thing the Beatles and the Rolling Stones had in common, besides both being superstar British bands beginning in the 1960s, is that both bands and their individual members had plenty of iconic album covers we all recognize. In this clever animation by the collective Dog & Rabbit, these album covers employ "2D animated slapstick and anarchy" as they try to wreck, erase, and wipe each other out in the strangest ways. There's quite a bit of dancing involved, too. Which is stronger, the yellow submarine or the lips? Does it really matter when we are entertained by merely watching them move? This video sure did win a lot of awards. -via Nag on the Lake

PJ McQuade's Expanded Line of Pop Culture Christmas Cards and Ornaments

Longtime Neatorama readers are familiar with PJ McQuade's pop culture Christmas cards and ornaments, featuring characters from Star Wars, Twin Peaks, Jaws, Labyrinth, The Neverending Story, and other movies and TV shows. These are guaranteed to make you the coolest card sender in your friend circle, and confuse your grandparents to boot. This year, McQuade is debuting an expanded line of new cards featuring Pedro Pascale, the Jordan Peele movie Us, The Dark Crystal, Predator, Legend, Khan from Star Trek, and a special trio of Alan Rickman's geekiest roles (Galaxy Quest, Harry Potter, and Die Hard). Let's check out the inside of those cards.

These new designs are available not only as Christmas cards, but Christmas tree ornaments, refrigerator magnets, and stickers, too. You can get those items in combo packs and cards in multi-packs and variety packs. Also check out some old favorites and even fandoms you aren't familiar with. Get your order in now at the Etsy store Castle McQuade. And you might as well order your Valentines Day cards, too. 

A Chanukah Medley Set to the Tunes of Taylor Swift

The Jewish a cappella group Six13 (previously at Neatorama) always has a new parody for each holiday with lyrics that explain the celebration set to popular music. Chanukah/Hanukkah begins on Thursday evening and runs through Friday, December 15th. This year, Six13 used a selection of 13 songs from Taylor Swift's Eras tour to explain various parts of the Chanukah celebration. Coincidentally or not, today Taylor Swift has been named Time magazine's Person of the Year for 2023. If you want the name of the Taylor Swift song they are singing, hover over the control bar at the bottom of the video, and it will be displayed. Several of these songs are available on Six13's latest album, Vol. 8: Lights. Happy Chanukah!

Brenda Lee's 'Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree' Tops Billboard 100 for the First Time in Forever

There are a few hits that we hear every year whenever this season rolls around the corner, and Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas is You" has been the anthem, so to speak, of the Christmas season. However, this time around, in its 65-year existence, Brenda Lee's "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" has topped the Billboard Hot 100 for the first time since its release.

What brought this surge of Brenda Lee's song on the list? Apparently, it's the making of the official music video of the song, released a month ago. Another contributing factor to the song's performance was how Billboard changed the way it calculated its charts. From 2018, they have increased the weight of streams, which meant old favorites like this one have garnered a lot more attention.

With this new formula, songs like Carey's "All I Want for Christmas is You" has been at the top of the chart every Christmas season since 2019, except this year. It's currently at the second spot with some other holiday songs in the top five joining them like Bobby Helms' "Jingle Bell Rock" and Wham!'s "Last Christmas".

(Video credit: Brenda Lee VEVO/Youtube)

Hilarious Finnish Words and Expressions

Every language has its own idioms, expressions, and proverbs that sound weird when you translate them directly into English. And Finnish has some hilarious ones, which Suomi Dictionary has posted on Instagram. Sad and Useless grabbed some of the spiciest ones.

I'm pretty sure we have all had a brain fart once in a while, when we're spaced out and we just spew out incoherent things out of our mouth. Some might think it annoying but there are times when it can be charmingly goofy, especially when your friend does it while they're drunk.

Vitutus seems like a very cool word. And what it expresses is quite useful indeed for certain situations, like when you're playing a video game and the RNG screws you over. I have definitely felt vitutus several times in the past week.

This one does make you wonder about Lohja, and I looked it up. Apparently, it's a wonderful place which features a lot of manors and farms, museums and art galleries, as well as dog-friendly destinations. It's also known as Lake City, has been a trading center since the 14th century, has long-standing traditions in horticulture, and its locals have been known as some of the pioneers of Finnish mining and construction. So, I don't know what Lohja did to deserve this expression.

I guess every culture has its own way of saying what they think about people's appearances, although this one seems a bit in-your-face, no pun intended.

Finally, an expression that sounds like a tongue twister in Finnish. I'm not sure how to pronounce it but that's a lot of ee's and tee's there. Plus, I like how it sounds like German humor.

(Images credit: Suomi Dictionary, Sad and Useless; Joakim Honkasalo/Unsplash)

28 Things We Misunderstood As Children

At some point, we were all gullible children. When I was about 4 years old, I was led to believe that my cousin's doll was like the possessed one from the movies (Chucky), and I couldn't use the bathroom for a time because they put it in front of the bathroom door. Cracked lists 28 things that their members misunderstood when they were children. Here are some of my favorites from that list.

This first one is fairly harmless. If someone older tells you something, we as children are susceptible to believe them (see anecdote above). In this person's case, I would say no harm, no foul. One might even think that butterflies and moths are one and the same thing, just by how similar they appear. Like a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde kind of thing.

This person shared they used to do one of Goku's moves from Dragon Ball Z. I think that most of us at some point tried to imitate the things that we see on movies or television and thought were cool. The comment was hilarious though, because doing that in the open does look like children performing a ritual, if you can imagine it.

I think everyone can relate to this one about chewing gum. They tell you it will either be left undigested and stay inside forever, or in the case of bubble gum, that it will blow up in your stomach. Still, I think it's quite unhealthy to swallow chewing gum, so we shouldn't do it.

And this one just cracked me up. They do oddly look alike!

(Images credit: Cracked; Artem Kniaz/Unsplash)

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