12.14.2023 | Thursday

thursday 13: things that happened in 2023

category: Memetastic
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reading time: 4 minutes

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1. Twitter became X.

According to Elon Musk. The rest of humanity seems pretty set on continuing with Twitter. Me? I stopped using it when Musk took the helm.

2. Musk v. Zuckerberg

The aforementioned Musk, in a pique of arrogant man-child behavior, publicly challenges Mark Zuckerberg to a duel. I mean, a boxing match. To which Zuck calls his bluff and agrees. Unsurprisingly, Musk backed down, suggesting instead a literal measuring of the twig part of the male twigs and berries. Zuck did not rise to the bait.

3. baby daddies

Japanese scientists created mice from two biologically male mice. They used skin cells from the tails of male mice and used them in sciency ways I don’t understand to create eggs. The eggs were then implanted into female mice, who eventually gave birth to live baby mice. This could have significant impact in the future for both fertility treatments and the preservation of endangered species.

4. In the K-pop world, BTS rules.

One of the members, Jimin, became the first South Korean solo artist to ever top the charts. His song “Like Crazy” hit the Billboard Hot 100 in April.

5. BTS continues to rule.

Months later, another BTS member, Jungkook, became the second South Korean solo artist, taking the #1 spot with his single “Seven.”

3. BTS is on hiatus until 2025.

Much to the dismay of BTS fans, the entire band is currently serving their 18-month mandatory conscription in the South Korean military. The first left in December 2022, the second in April 2023, the third in September. The remaining four all enlisted within the last two days. So no BTS for their fans, at least for a while.

4. Women vote at the Vatican.

For the first time in history, nuns and laywomen were allowed to vote in the synod during a Vatican assembly. The topics of discussion included the advancement of women in church roles. Many priests even supported the ordination of women as deacons, a hot-button topic in the Catholic faith.

5. geriatric black holes in space

Using NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the James Webb Space Telescope, researchers were able to confirm the existence of the oldest black hole in the universe, recorded to date. It is believed that it formed roughly 470 million years after the Big Bang. It is ten times larger than the Milky Way’s black hole.

6. The Year of Strikes, Part I

On 2 May, The Writers Guid of America went on strike over labor disputes. It was the largest stoppage to US film and TV since the beginning of COVID. It lasted until 27 September.

7. The Year of Strikes, Part II

The SAG-AFTRA strike began on 14 July, ending on 9 November. This too was a strike about labor disputes. It was the longest strike in SAG-AFTRA history.

8. The Mau’i wildfires

The devastation is still being felt here in the islands. Over 17,000 acres of land destroyed, more than 100 people killed. The island will never be the same.

9. population growth

In April, India surpassed China with a population of 1,425,775,850 people. China’s population is expected to drop below the 1-billion mark by the end of the century.

10. An author returns from the dead

As an author in the small-press publishing world, this one chaps my behind. Susan Meachen committed suicide in September 2020. The book world was rocked, sympathy and sadness overflowing. Turns out… she wasn’t dead at all. Her story/explanation has changed multiple times. First, she claimed she’d just needed a break from the book world and social media. When that wasn’t received as a good reason, she left for mental health reasons, and her daughter chose, without her knowledge, to declare her mother dead to the world. That also wasn’t received well as said “daughter” also set up a variety of charities/GoFundMe’s to garner “money for the final expenses.” Her last story was an unapologetic one, that she did it for publicity and book sales. Yeah, no.

11. Fireball Cinnamon… where’s the booze?

In a weird lawsuit, customers are suing the makers of Fireball Cinnamon for fraud, due to the lack of whiskey in their whiskey drink. Apparently, the $.99 mini bottles are booze-free, which isn’t made clear on the label. It notes that the bottles contain “malt-based and wine-based alcoholic beverages.” The beverage is flavored to taste like whiskey but contains no booze. This allows them to be sold in places that aren’t allowed to sell liquor. The lawsuit claims that the labels between the alcoholic version and this are too similar, missing only the word “Whisky” on the minis. It also claims that the statement of composition on the bottle is misleading:  “Malt Beverage With Natural Whisky & Other Flavors and Carmel Color.” The company is referring to natural whiskey flavor, but the elimination of “flavor” makes it easy for consumers to assume that “natural whisky” is the distilled spirit listed as a separate ingredient before “other flavors.”

12. alabaster alligator

An alabaster alligator, an extremely rare leucistic reptile, was recently born in Florida. She is the most recent descendent of a nest of leucistic alligators first found in Louisiana swamps in 1987. She’s the first solid white alligator born from those original alligators.

13. 17 and a barred lawyer

Earlier this year, Peter Park passed the California State Bar exam at the tender age of 17. He is believed to be the youngest to pass the exam. Park began high school at age 13 and, at the same time, began a 4-year juris doctor program at Northwestern California University School of Law. He graduated this year and took the exam in July, then began working as a law clerk for the DA’s office in August. He turned 18 in November, a few weeks after receiving his bar exam results. He was sworn in as an attorney on the 5th of this month.

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5 responses to “thursday 13: things that happened in 2023

  1. Some of these are new news to me. I had a Twitter, to read other’s Tweets, but never used it otherwise. Deleted it when Musk came along. What a weirdo, challenging Zuckerberg.

  2. i am slowly saying goodbye to twitter… hoping that things will change for the better soon there..
    i recall seeing the news about that author’s rebirth!! but never gave it much thought.. reading it now after seeing your post makes me realize how crazy the world truly is


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