Maybe money can't buy you love, but psychologists from Purdue University have a new study that says it can buy you happiness... and they know exactly how much it takes to do just that. They found that people are most satisfied when pulling in a salary of $95,000 a year - but that's per person - not per family. The study, published in Nature Human Behavior, analyzed data from the Gallup World Poll, which includes a representative sample of participants from 164 countries. They were looking to define a point of "income satiation," the point at which more money doesn't make you any happier. They found the ceiling at which more money doesn't provide any more life satisfaction was $95,000, on average. After that, in fact, subjective well-being started to fall as income went up. Emotional satisfaction, on the other hand, came slightly cheaper-positive emotions were correlated with more money up to $60,000, and negative emotions decreased as salary increased, up until $75,000. Obviously these figures vary by the standard of living in your country. The happiness ceiling in North America is $105,000.(MentalFloss.com)
Put a Spoon in Your Underwear - No Really!
Believe it or not, authorities in Gothenburg, Sweden are advising girls who fear being taken abroad for forced marriage or female genital mutilation to hide a spoon in their underwear before going through airport security. Airport staff have been told how to respond in such circumstances, said Katarina Idegard, who is in charge of tackling so-called "honor-based violence" in Sweden's second biggest city. The spoon will trigger metal detectors and the girl is then taken aside so she can talk to staff privately. Idegard says, "It is a last chance to sound the alarm." There is no data on the number of girls taken abroad for forced marriage, but Idegard said a national hotline received 139 calls last year about child marriage or forced marriage. Activists will encourage other cities to follow Gothenburg's lead and adopt the spoon initiative to protect girls. The idea comes from British charity Karma Nirvana, which said the tactic had already saved a number of girls in Britain from forced marriage. (Reuters)
Fire crews are supposed to save people, but in Phoenix, a man was in critical condition after a fire crew ran over or bumped into him in the driveway of a fire station while responding to a call. Sgt. Armando Carbajal with the Phoenix Police Department said that a crew was leaving the Phoenix Fire Station No. 3 when the incident occurred. Firefighters reportedly "heard a bump noise" and saw a backpack on the ground when they looked in the rearview mirror of their vehicle. Crews immediately started to treat the man and transported him to a local hospital. The Phoenix Police Department's homicide unit is investigating. The man has not been identified, but Carbajal said he is not a firefighter. Homicide unit? What? (KTAR News)
Dad Most Deserving of a Beat Down
Here's your worst father-of-the-day award. In St. Johns, Florida, police arrested 58-year-old Kerry Knudsen after he allegedly struck a child for "eating all the Cheez-Its and drinking all the tea." Knudsen faces a charge of cruelty toward a child and, according to police, was highly intoxicated when an officer arrived at the home. Knudsen told the officer he had gotten into an argument with the child, because Knudsen told the child not to "eat all the Cheez-Its or drink all the tea," but the child did. During the scuffle, the report says, Knudsen struck the victim in the face with a closed fist, and the child then pushed Knudsen against the wall causing a cut on Knudsen's head. Knudsen was later released on a $2,500 bond. (Action News Jacksonville)
It No Longer Matters What Was Said... Just Who Said It!
An interesting thing happened in Louisville, Kentucky, that demonstrates just how much we, as a country, have let ourselves slide when it comes to determining our loyalties and our perspectives. Ben Bowling was delivering his speech as valedictorian at Bell County High School. Wanting to impart a nugget of wisdom to the crowd he offered the following quote which he said he found during an internet search: "Don't just get involved. Fight for your seat at the table. Better yet, fight for a seat at the head of the table." He then revealed the source of the quote, none other than President Donald J. Trump, which elicited wild applause and cheers from the crowd. But then Ben said, "Just kidding," and informed his audience that the true source of the quote was Barack Obama. The crowd suddenly fell almost silent save for a lone boo that can be heard on the Twitter clip. No surprise that Bell County has been heavily dominated by the GOP during presidential elections over the past 12 years. Meanwhile, young Mr. Bowling is headed to the University of Kentucky to study biology and is described by his principal as "very politically aware," and says he "didn't mean anything bad" by his joke and was just trying to lighten the mood with what he thought was "a really good quote." Incidentally, the quote came from a 2012 commencement speech the former president gave at Barnard College. (New York Times)
A Bad Guy with a Hammer Vs. A Good Guy with Beans
Remember - the only thing that will stop a bad guy with a hammer is a good guy with a can of Bush's Extra Brown Sugar Baked Beans. Police say a standoff in a Bay County, Florida grocery store between a hammer-wielding suspect and local law enforcement ended in an arrest and multiple charges after one quick-thinking official dinged the suspect in the back with two cans of the beans. It seems 25-year-old Justin Tyler Stanford entered the grocery store after destroying his vehicle near the store. When the authorities arrived they were trying to establish communication with the suspect inside but he walked out of the store, pointing the hammer as if it was a gun. As the three officers approached the entrance where Stanford was standing he started to swing the hammer. An officer standing near the cans of beans quickly had an "a-ha" moment and threw two cans at the suspect, subduing him for a second, before all three law enforcement officials were able to apprehend him. Stanford is now facing charges of assault, assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer, and resisting arrest with violence. (ABC News)
France Building "Free Range" Alzheimer's Village
Work has begun on France's first "Alzheimer's village" where patients will be given free rein without medication in a purpose-built medieval-style citadel designed to increase their freedom and reduce anxiety. Residents of the village in Dax, southwestern France, will be able to shop in a small supermarket, go to the hairdressers, library, gym and even a little farm. They will live in small shared houses designed to reflect their personal tastes and in four districts reminiscent of the southwestern French region between forests and the beach. The inhabitants are all men and women suffering from Alzheimer's, the commonest cause of dementia. Allowing them to live in an almost normal village helps "maintain (patients') participation in social life," said professor Jean-François Dartigues, neurologist at the Pellegrin university hospital in Bordeaux. The village is equipped to house 120 residents with Alzheimer's, along with 100 live-in caregivers and 120 volunteers who will stage activities. (Oddity Central)
What the What?
A pregnant cow from Bulgaria has been sentenced to death for "illegally" crossing the border into neighboring Serbia. She apparently didn't know that Serbia isn't a member of the European Union and could not return to her home country without the appropriate paperwork! It seems last month Penka the cow broke away from her herd near the Bulgarian village of Kopilovtsi and crossed the border into Serbia. After searching for Penka for two weeks, her cow's owner, Ivan Haralampiev, and his sons notified border patrol, the local police and even the mayors of neighboring villages about her disappearance. Then, Ivan received news that Penka had been located in the village of Bosilegrad, in Serbia, where it was being taken care of by the locals. The relieved owner went to retrieve his cow, but got bad news when trying to cross the border back into Bulgaria. Despite the fact that a Serbian vet had checked Penka's health and cleared the animal for release, border authorities said that according to European Union legislation, the cow was going to have to be put down for entering Bulgaria from a non-EU country without proper import papers. They eventually let the man bring the cow back into the country with the stipulation that it would be put to death in a matter of days. Well the story went viral and so far, over 9,600 people had signed a petition to save Penka's life. (Oddity Central)