THINGS WE DON'T UNDERSTAND
The key to a woman's attractiveness is not so much her shape and curves but rather if her height and weight are proportional, a new study finds.
Two factors in human attractiveness are shape and Body Mass Index. BMI is weight scaled for height and for women shape is the ratio of waist to hip or WHR.
A new study at the University of Newcastle in England, to be published by the Royal Society, finds a group of men and women shown pictures of women made far greater correlations for BMI with attractiveness than for WHR.
Even as the women in the pictures got heavier but also becoming more curvaceous, the experiment showed BMI to be the better determinant. As the images became more curvaceous -- but with a higher BMI -- they were deemed least attractive.
NEWS OF OTHER LIFE FORMS
This from the Islamic Republic News Agency: "'Gods' in India's northeastern state of Assam have become terrors with a special liking for the fairer sex -- putting human males into a quandary."
Translate that into rampaging rhesus monkeys, worshipped by Hindus, that have developed a fancy for women and girls, the IRNA says, "barging into homes in daylight and snatching away clothes and playing pranks."
From eating cooked food in the kitchen to plundering belongings inside rooms, the IRNA reports the monkeys have been wreaking havoc in Assam's towns and cities.
IRNA reports the monkey menace has put the state wildlife authorities in a fix. "We know the immensity of the problem but are totally helpless," said Assam's Chief Wildlife Warden Sonadhar Doley.
TODAY'S SIGN THE WORLD IS ENDING
Two Florida-based corporations didn't need a crystal ball to figure out their TV psychic Miss Cleo gig was going to be nothing but trouble. They have agreed to pay a $50,000 fine for defrauding consumers out of millions in pay-per-call services.
Access Resource Services and Psychic Reader Network bilked Missouri residents out of $18.8 million in "900" phone call charges, says state Attorney General Jay Nixon.
"The meter has run out for the Miss Cleo crew in scamming Missourians," Nixon says in a statement. "The people behind Miss Cleo turned out to be more con artist than clairvoyant, more fraud than fortune teller, and more swindler than psychic."
Miss Cleo, a reputed Jamaican shaman, in reality was played in television commercials by Youree Dell Harris, a Los Angeles actress. She was not charged. The ads allegedly misrepresented an offer of free minutes of psychic readings to keep consumers holding on the line so they were billed $4.99 per minute.
(Thanks to UPI's Al Swanson)
AND FINALLY, TODAY'S UPLIFTING STORY
Rather than talking to her pets, Lynn Shinkle of Azle, Texas, has pets who talk to her -- in English and Spanish.
The Fort Worth, Texas, Star-Telegram writes Shinkle has 60 or so animals in her 6-acre backyard zoo, including the chatty yellow-headed Amazon parrot, Echo, that won third place and $3,000 in a national pet talent contest this week.
Echo also stars in a traveling menagerie known as Lynn's Party Safari, that does local birthday parties, carnivals and other parties and events, the newspaper says.
Echo speaks some 30 phrases in both languages and his song repertoire includes "Happy Birthday," "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," "Old McDonald" and "Jingle Bells."