Column 1

Column 1
Source:
The National,Tuesday June 21st, 2016

THE term sexual dimorphism describes the physical differences between males and females of the same species that arise as a consequence of sexual maturation. These differences can manifest as variations in size and colour, and the presence or absence of body parts used in courtship displays or fights. In some cases, the sexual dimorphism is so striking that males and females of the same species are mistaken as members of entirely different species.
***
A HYDRAULOPHONE is a musical instrument played via direct physical contact with a hydraulic fluid, typically water. The sound is generated from the vibration of the instrument’s liquid and changes based on the position of the fingers in relation to the finger holes. The invention of such devices led to the creation of a physics-based classification system for instruments that takes into account the state of matter that initially produces their sound.
***
FATHER’S Day is a day set apart in many countries for honouring fathers. In the US, UK, and Canada, it is observed on the third Sunday in June. The idea for a father’s day originated when Sonora Louise Smart Dodd of Spokane, Washington, heard a sermon on Mother’s Day in 1909 and was inspired to create a date to honour fathers like her own, a Civil War veteran. Through her efforts, the first Father’s Day was celebrated in Spokane in 1910.
***
BLAISE Pascal was a French mathematician, physicist, and religious philosopher. A child prodigy, he earned the envy of René Descartes with an essay he wrote on conic sections when he was still a teen. Credited with founding the modern theory of probability and advancing differential calculus, he also made important contributions to physics, notably in the study of atmospheric pressure.
***
THE Fyr Bal Fest held every year in Ephraim, Wisconsin, reflects the town’s Swedish and Norwegian heritage by incorporating customs traditionally associated with Scandinavian Midsummer celebrations. The festival is presided over by a “Viking chieftain,” chosen on the basis of his contributions to the community. After a coronation ceremony, he proclaims the official opening of summer and lights a bonfire in which an effigy of the Winter Witch is burned. Other traditional Scandinavian events at the festival include folk dancing and welcome mats in doorways made out of evergreen boughs.
***
QUOUTE of the day: Thank goodness…I was never sent to school…it would have rubbed off some of the originality. – Beatrix Potter (1866-1943)
***
[email protected]