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What I Learned On The Internet: British Cupcakes Thwart Terrorists

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CUPCAKES
The British government's intelligence service used cupcakes to fight the terrorist organization al-Qaeda by hacking into an online Al-Qaeda "magazine" and replacing bomb-making directions with cupcake recipes from a cookbook. | Stewart Stanley/Getty Images

You can learn a lot on the Internet if you know where to look.

For example, I used to think that spending billions on bombs was the way to fight terrorism. However, my tune has changed thanks to an article I read in the esteemed academic journal Dumb As A Blog.

It seems that recently the British government's intelligence service used cupcakes to fight the terrorist organization al-Qaeda.

Here's how they did it: The British spies hacked into an online Al-Qaeda "magazine" and replaced bomb-making directions with cupcake recipes from a cookbook.

The terrorists thought they were downloading instructions on how to make a bomb from a website dedicated to inspiring and helping wannabe terrorists, and what they got was a recipe for Mojito cupcakes from the cookbook "The Best Cupcakes In America," published by comedian Ellen Degeneres' television production company.

To be honest, I would rather see a war movie with this plot rather than a more traditional boom-boom-pow film, but I recognize that a film about making cupcakes won't be as visually appealing for directors like Michael Bay -- and won't look as good in 3D.

Meanwhile, it seems that the two big events of the last six weeks -- Osama Bin Laden's death and the alleged end of the world -- are combining together to make a Reese's peanut butter cup of bizarre.

Harold Camping's claim that the end of the world was nigh on May 21, 2011, may have been for naught (although he's holding out for an October 21 armageddon), but TruTV.com is reporting that doomsday devotees believe that Bin Laden's death actually is a sign that the end times are just beginning.

Apparently, modern-day students of that big know-it-all Nostradamus say that he predicted the death of an anti-christ named Mabus. If you switch the letters M-A-B-U-S around, you get "Usamb," which is one letter from "Usama," which is an alternative spelling of Osama.

I love conspiracy theories as much as the next guy (provided that next guy doesn't actually love them), but here's my problem: the letters M-A-B-U-S can also be switched around to spell "Sambu," which is one letter off from "Samba," a popular Brazilian dance that, so far, hasn't appeared in any biblical prophecies.

So I'm not buying it.

But, according to Time.com, the reason I'm not buying may not have anything to do with logic -- just my last name.

New research suggests that people with names that start with letters toward the end of the alphabet tend to making purchasing decisions much faster than their early-alphabet counterparts. In other words, the closer to Z you are, the zippier you get.

Since my last name begins with "M" -- the same as "Mabus," I might add -- I'm right in the middle when it comes to rushing to judgment.

However, I can't find anything in the research that suggests if the purchasing patterns change when women with "A" names like Jennifer Aniston marry guys with names further down the alphabet chain like Brad Pitt.

Now, you know that old saying about beauty being in the eye of the beholder? Well, actually it's in the eyes of the photoshopper and that's why former "Sports Illustrated" model Caroline Forsling is angry these days.

According to The Frisky, Forsling is suing Estee Lauder for using Photoshop to make her 35-year-old mug look older than it is in order to promote Origins Plantscription, an “anti-aging serum” marketed to mature women; women presumedly older than the youthful Ms. Forsling.

She is suing for $2 million, but I don't think she has a case. The fashion and cosmetics industry always uses younger models for older products. It's common to have clothing ads features teenage girls wearing clothes designed for cougars, so this is just a natural progression.

I wonder if her lawyer told her she seriously could win. If so, he might have been considered for another Frisky article about the worst lies men have told women.

Considering I have a daughter who one day may be told B.S. stories by guys, I probably shouldn't have a favorite, but the story about the guy who told a woman he was on a first date that he had once had a threesome because he thought it would impress her has a certain craven doofus appeal.

Think that's tacky?

That's nothing compared to the series of NSFW videos at Oddee.com for a feature on the 12 Most Creepy YouTube Videos ever made.

You'd think it would be hard to top the video by Jared Lee Loughner, the Arizona shooting suspect, which is really chilling, especially his rants about the teacher that gave him a "B" for free speech, but the one by the creepy old man (who turned out to be a sex offender) pantomiming to "Pretty Woman" is even skeevier.

I needed a shower after watching all 12 videos, which makes glad that Oddee also has a feature on the 10 coolest shower designs.

I can't decide which one I like best: The one with the built-in aquarium is really cool and the one with 18 shower heads would be great after a hard day of Internet surfing, but, if I have to choose, I really like the shower pod which allows the user to lay down while the machine washes every part of the body with soap and water, steam heats you with infrared light, pampers you with sound and aromatherapy, and then finishes up with a seaweed wrap and some body lotion.

Then you get out, and the machine sterilizes itself to get rid of all the nastiness you left behind.

I wish the Internet had a way to do that as well.

Oh it does: The delete history button.

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