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Positive News Friday

Rounding off the week with an upbeat bundle of positive news nuggets.

Chloe and Craig Dennis
Credit: @mrschlodennis | X
Going Ape

At first glance, this picture appears to show a monkey taking a selfie with a pair of tourists. But all is not as it seems. Chloe and Craig Dennis encountered the primate at Bali’s Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary, where ‘selfies’ with one of its 1,200 long-tailed macaques are available for $3 a picture. Sanctuary staff accomplish the trick by holding a treat behind a phone before taking a picture when the monkey reaches for it, making it appear like the animal is holding the device.

Bottles discovered at Mount Vernon
Credit: Mount Vernon
Cherry Bounce

Two glass bottles filled with centuries-old cherries were found hidden inside George Washington's historic home in Virginia. Archaeologists made the discovery while conducting ongoing excavations as part of a major revitalization of the mansion, known as Mount Vernon. The bottles, which look like they were made in the 1740s to 1750s, were found buried beneath a brick floor that was laid in the 1770s. To help preserve the roughly 250-year-old glass bottles, researchers decanted their contents - including cherries, pits, stems and a "gooey residue" - into smaller vessels for future analysis, The Washington Post reported. It could be a drink called cherry bounce - it was popular during colonial times and was made with brandy, spices, sugar and cherry juice. (Both Washington and his wife, Martha, were fans.)

Strange But True

A Belgian man has been acquitted of drunk-driving because he has auto-brewery syndrome (ABS), an extremely rare condition whereby the body produces alcohol, his lawyer has said.

Anse Ghesquiere said that in “another unfortunate coincidence” her client worked at a brewery, but three doctors who independently examined him had confirmed he had ABS.

Belgian media said in the verdict the judge emphasised that the defendant, who was not named in line with local judicial custom, did not experience symptoms of intoxication.

Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area Reserve
Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area Reserve and Haida Heritage Site.

Rightful Restitution

For centuries, the Haida people of British Columbia have known that the impenetrable forests and bountiful waters of Haida Gwaii - “the islands at the boundary of the world” - were both a life-giving force and their rightful home. Now, after decades of negotiation, the province of British Columbia has come to the same conclusion: the title over more than 200 islands off Canada’s west coast, totalling over one million acres, should rightfully be held by the Haida Nation.

Johnny Cash, country music star
Johnny Cash.
Cash Demos

Good news for Johnny Cash fans as eleven previously unreleased songs, which the country star recorded as demos in 1993 but never completed, are to finally see the light of day on a new album entitled Songwriter, due to be released on 28 June. The country star’s son co-produced the album, worked up from the demos with a group of former bandmates. A single, Well Alright, was released today alongside the announcement: a saucy, strutting number about lust amid laundry with a classic Cash opening couplet: “I met her at the laundromat, she was washing extra hot / I said don’t you need a little help with that big load you got?”

Credit: TallyMatty on Reddit | Left Nov 2021 / Right Apr 2024
Black to White

Meet Buster, a 4-year-old dog who has undergone a dramatic transformation, transitioning over the course of two and a half years from a sleek black coat to an entirely white one, all due to a skin condition known as vitiligo. Happily, it's entirely harmless and is just another extraordinary example of the vagaries of nature. "Over time, he would lose his black fur, and new white fur would come in," Buster's owner explained.

First of its Kind

Beginning in 2026, 1,250 megawatts of electricity will speed along 339 miles of underground cable to provide a million New York City homes with hydropower generated in Canada. The $6 billion Champlain Hudson Power Express transmission line is under construction to help New York state meet its clean-energy goals. It's also part of a larger nationwide push to create more transmission lines to bring renewable energy to the country's aging electrical grid. When CHPE (pronounced "chippy") broke ground in 2022, it became one of New York's first Tier 4 projects, the state's program aimed at sourcing 70 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030.


“I drink a cup of sunlight every morning to brighten myself.” Debasish Mridha

On This Day

Joshua Reynolds

26 April 1768: The prestigious English Royal Academy of Arts, led by its first president, Joshua Reynolds, hosted its first art opening.


Mood Booster

Meet the tiniest bird on Earth.


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