It is difficult to overstate the contribution of tomatoes to our culinary culture. Imagine how poorer we would be without pizza, marinara sauce, salsa, or any of the countless dishes that rely […]
The Day a Dead Pope Was Dug Up and Put on Trial
Many things about the Vatican are difficult to understand. Some of it is due to intentional secrecy. Some require a deeper understanding of the history of the papacy or the traditions of […]
The Seeds of Death
Castor oil has been used for centuries as a laxative and all-purpose curative. Ironically, the same plant that makes possible this healthful oil also happens to be the world’s deadliest plant. The […]
Which Is Harder to Swallow?
Lady Astor to Winston Churchill: “Winston, if you were my husband I would flavor your coffee with poison” Churchill: “Madam, if I were your husband, I should drink it.” source
The Gladiator Emperor of Rome
Commodus (161-192), Roman Emperor from 180 to 192. Dio Cassius describes him as “not naturally wicked but, on the contrary, as guileless as any man that ever lived. His great simplicity, however, […]
The Mathematician Who Died From Being a Picky Eater
The Austrian/American logician and mathematician Kurt Gödel died on January 14, 1978, from being a picky eater.
A Snack to Die For
Wild almonds are bitter, the kernel produces deadly cyanide upon mechanical handling, and eating even a few dozen in one sitting can be fatal. The domesticated species that humans have been selectively […]