TIME movies

Wolf of Wall Street Will Begin U.S. ‘Redemption Tour’ in Florida

Jordan Belfort Speaks At The Gold Coast Convention Centre
Motivational speaker Jordan Belfort speaks on 'The Art of Prospecting' at a real estate agents' conference at the Gold Coast Convention Centre on June 1, 2014 on the Gold Coast, Australia. Newspix—Newspix via Getty Images

Even as a motivational speaker he's still a wolf

Jordan Belfort—the real life “Wolf of Wall Street”—made headlines after his debauched tell-all memoir was made into a movie in 2013, directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio. Now, Belfort appears to be riding the wave of fame to a new chapter: The Tampa Bay Times reports Belfort’s embarking on a national “redemption” tour, which begins September 15th in Clearwater, Fl.

Belfort’s 52 now, and lives near Los Angeles; since his release from prison, Belfort’s made a name for himself on the motivational speaking circuit, and has been working for companies like Delta Air Lines, Deutsche Bank and Symantec, among others. He’s even just returned from a worldwide tour, where he spoke from South Africa to Canada.

He might be apologetic, but who knows. In May, Belfort spoke to a crowd in Dublin, Ireland. As the Irish Examiner reported: “Getting rich is f****** easy,” Belfort said then. “Eight years ago I had zero; this year I’m going to make $100m gross.”

[Tampa Bay Times]

TIME Bizarre

Florida Teen Arrested For Stealing From Sleeping Elderly People

19-year-old Florida man Eric Vanyo was arrested late Thursday in connection with thefts from two elderly people, a 93-year-old man and a 93-year-old woman, in the same night.

The Broward sheriff’s detectives assigned to the case said that Vanyo stole power tools, a television and a wedding ring from the man after prying open the door to his house. Vanyo then took “several pieces of jewelry” from the woman after having accessed her home through her laundry room; she woke to find him rummaging through her dresser. He then sold the items to a pawn shop, Local10 reports.

This is not the first time Vanyo has stolen from this 93-year-old man, detectives believe: In July, they say Vanyo stole a gold ring, a watch and two rolls of quarters.

Vanyo was arrested based on evidence obtained from the scene of the first burglary, where he cut himself; DNA from the blood was used to link Vanyo to the crime. He could be charged with “three counts of occupied burglary, fraud and possession of stolen property,” according to Local10.

[Local10]

TIME Science

European Navigation Satellites Get Lost In Orbit

It's unclear if the system, a rival to GPS, will be good to go on schedule

The European Space Agency and the European Union want to provide an alternate to GPS—Global Positioning System, the space-based satellite navigation system operated by the United States—called Galileo, named after the astronomer who gave us the precursor of Newtonian physics. Galileo is a €5 billion project intended for civilian use scheduled to be completed and operational by 2019, with 27 satellites and 3 spares orbiting 14,600 miles above Earth.

The system suffered a setback on Saturday, though, when two satellites launched from French Guiana failed to attain their intended orbit, Phys.Org reports. It’s not immediately clear why there was a malfunction, and the agencies involved are investigating. In the meantime, however, Galileo’s French coordinator spoke to Agence France-Presse (AFP) and said it will be be complicated to correct the satellites’ orbits.

The latest pair of satellites had suffered more than a year of delays due to “technical difficulties in the setting up of the production line and test tools.” Meanwhile, two more satellites are supposed to be launched by the end of the year—which is also when Galileo was intended to reach its initial operational capacity.

As of now, it’s unclear whether Saturday’s malfunction will affect the system’s launch schedule.

[Phys.Org]

TIME Food & Drink

Barista-Free Coffee Shop Uses the Honor System to Turn a Profit

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Espresso machine pouring coffee into cups Kathrin Ziegler—Getty Images

Trusting strangers is a viable business strategy, who knew?

Any time the honor system is used successfully, I think of Ayn Rand—the founder of Objectivism, the academically bankrupt theory of overriding and extreme self-interest. According to her philosophy, the honor system should never work: According to her, rationally, it shouldn’t work because one should take what they want and pay nothing for it. (Incidentally, there’s an economic theory that governs this principle called the “tragedy of the commons,” where a resource is spoiled for many through the actions of selfish individuals.)

10 months ago, a coffee shop in Valley City, North Dakota (pop. 6,700) called The Vault put the honor system to the test; now, months later, they’ve earned 15% more money than they’ve asked for, the Associated Press reports. The Vault isn’t any different than your local cafe—it has commercially brewed coffee, gourmet flavorings, pastries, and soft drinks. But what it doesn’t have are baristas. On the frequently-asked-questions section of the Vault’s website, the owners—David and Kimberly Brekke—acknowledge that their business model is “location-based.” Though they do believe it could work elsewhere, they maintain that it would only work “in tight-knit communities that adopt the establishment as their own.”

For the rest of us, this is just more evidence that Midwesterners might have life figured out.

[AP]

TIME World

Landlord Fined for Renting Apartment Only Accessible via Crawling

It cost an arm and two legs

Finding housing is difficult, wherever you are: It’s got to be affordable, located in a moderately convenient area (for your lifestyle), and not completely terrible to inhabit. Of course, those three—extremely broad—categories are flexible depending on one’s immediate need. You’re not gonna worry so much about livability if you really need a place now, right?

In England the situation seems to have come to a head. A British landlord, Yaakov Marom, was fined £1,500 for renting an apartment only accessible by crawling, the BBC reports. The local council fined Marom for having a two-foot high staircase, which was deemed a fire hazard. Apparently this isn’t the first time Marom has tried to rent out this patently uninhabitable space—in November 2012, he was issued a prohibition order that banned the use of the second floor of the house.

The occupants of the apartment were paying £420 per month. Marom was only made to pay £1,420 in costs and a victim surcharge of £120. Which begs the question: If it’s like that across the pond, how bad is it here?

[BBC]

TIME

These Are Some of the Weirdest FOIA Requests Fielded This Year in the UK

What's your dragon attack plan?

Freedom of Information Acts are a powerful transparency tool between governments and constituents. But they can also yield to some pretty freaky inquiries–as we found out Saturday when an organization of local governments representing more than 350 councils in England and Wales released a list of the most unusual requests they had received so far this year

Of that list, we present here–David Letterman style–the Top 10 Weirdest Petitions English Councils Have Had to Field in 2014, along with some snarky answer suggestions for the council-members:

1. “What plans are in place to protect the town from a dragon attack?” (Wigan Council)

Our answer: We haven’t gotten that far in A Song of Fire and Ice yet, sorry.

2. “Please list all the types of animals you have frozen since March 2012, including the type and quantity of each animal.” (Cambridge City Council)

Our answer: We can only account for the types of animals we have subjected to repeated screenings of Disney’s “Frozen.” The results may be disturbing.

3. “How many times has the council paid for the services of an exorcist, psychic or religious healer? Were the services performed on an adult, child, pet or building?” (Rossendale Council)

Our answer: Well, we’ve never *paid* for it.

4. “Please can you let me know how many roundabouts are located within your council boundaries.” (Leicestershire County Council)

Our answer: That’s what she said.

5. “What precautions, preparations, planning and costings have been undertaken in the case an asteroid crashes into Worthing, a meteorite landing in Worthing or solar activity disrupting electromagnetic fields?” (Worthing Borough Council)

Our answer: Just a sec. Gotta watch “Deep Impact” again.

6. “How many holes in privacy walls between cubicles have been found in public toilets and within council buildings in the last 10 years?” (Rossendale Council)

Our answer: Not knowing where the peepholes are is part of the fun!

7. “How many bodies are there in mortuaries that have been unclaimed for 10 years? How long have these bodies been in the mortuary? How old were they when they died? Is it possible to have the names of these people?” (Richmond Council)

Our answer: This is the last time we’re gonna ask you to stop writing to us, Dr. Lecter.

8. “How many people in the town have a licence to keep a tiger, lion, leopard, lynx or panther as a pet?” (Scarborough Council)

Our answer: John “Cougar” Mellencamp.

9. “How many requests were made to council-run historic public-access buildings (e.g. museums) requesting to bring a team of ‘ghost investigators’ into the building?” (Birmingham Council)

Our answer: Are you the key master?

10. “How many children in the care of the council have been micro-chipped?” (Southend Council)

Our answer: 0011000111100010100

TIME animals

Feline Lucky? Cat Survives 12-Story Fall

It should give his owner paws for thought

A cat named Gizmo recently fell 12 stories from the penthouse terrace of a Manhattan apartment building, landing on a third floor landing and getting wedged between a skylight and a wall.

Gizmo’s owner, Samuel Jacobs, didn’t see what happened, but speculated that his cat slipped through the door to the terrace and then off the edge, the Associated Press reports.

After climbing out of a neighbor’s window, Jacobs rushed Gizmo to a vet, fearing internal injuries. When they got there, however, Gizmo was given a relatively clean bill of health—some scratches and a single broken tooth.

So how did Gizmo survive the fall? It turns out our feline friends are actually well-equipped to land unscathed after falling from high places. When cats are 3-4 weeks old, they begin to develop what’s called the ‘righting reflex‘, which is how cats twist in midair to land on their feet. It’s perfected at around 7 weeks old. (Here’s a cool schematic that shows how they actually manage to do it.)

A study conducted in 1987 and published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association examined 132 cats that had fallen from buildings and were brought into vets around New York Animal Medical center for treatment. It found that injuries per cat increased depending on the height the cat fell up to 7 stories, but actually decreased when the cat fell from above that threshold. The researchers speculated that this was due to the cats’ ability to right themselves and their relatively low terminal velocity.

[AP]

TIME animals

Houston Zoo’s Baby Giraffe Makes Her Public Debut

"Kamili" is only two weeks old

Kamili—this adorable baby giraffe—was born on Aug. 3 at the Houston Zoo, becoming the 10th animal in their herd. Check out her poised and graceful debut, just a few weeks after entering the world. She won’t stay that miniature size for long, though — newborn calves can nearly double their height in the first year of being born.

TIME animals

Terrifying Genius Cat Figures Out How to Open Doors

He'd make a good cat burglar

Meet Mulder. Mulder is cute. Mulder also has a secret power: He can open doors. He can even do it when there’s a tub of water in the way. Now if he can only figure out how to flush the toilet, he’d be the perfect house cat.

TIME Science

WATCH: Here’s What the Sun Is Actually Doing to Your Skin

This might make you reach for the sunscreen

Nearly every living thing on the Earth depends on the Sun—directly or indirectly—for its survival. But for humans, exposure to the sun can also exact a cost: Stay outside too long (or beneath the rays of a tanning bed, as the case may be), and you run the very real risk of developing wrinkles, liver spots, and even skin cancer.

Damage is caused by ultraviolet rays, which lie outside of our visual spectrum; some creatures—as different as bees, reindeer, and salmon—can perceive them, meaning that they see the world much differently than we do. We do, however, have the technology to see the world in UV, and one inventive videographer took to the streets to show ordinary people what their skin really looked like.

“We showed people what they looked like in ultraviolet, & wondered aloud if they wanted to put on some damn sunscreen already,” Thomas Leveritt wrote on his Twitter feed. It’s amazing to see, really, and is a timely summer reminder that we only get one set of skin. Take care of yours!

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