White coat experiment

We are often inclined to judge people by how they look - racial profiling at the airport, attractive people earn more are common headlines, but as a reader shares on Quora.com we would all be well-served to keep an open mind.

"As a physician, especially when I'm not wearing my white coat, I've had people assume that I was in their room to pick up their tray. The most memorable recent event was a woman who, when I entered her room, gave me an almost hostile look and asked "can I help you?" in a tone one would use for a very unwelcome guest.

"Her demeanour instantly changed when she learned that I was a doctor. I've had frequent such encounters with patients in the past month or so as I've gone more and more without wearing my white coat. But, since we all know that racism is a thing of the past, I'm sure it was my hair or my smile that they found objectionable."

Rotary on execution watch

Arkansas has scheduled eight executions (for murders committed between 1989-1999) over a 10-day period in April, but has problems getting volunteers to watch, to make them legal.


The state law requires six to 12 "respectable citizens" to be present to witness an execution to ensure that the state's death penalty laws are properly followed. The director at the Department of Correction is to take the extraordinary step of personally seeking volunteers from his local Rotary club. (Source: New York Times)

Smart socks - but no GPS

Blacksocks company is hawking what they call the "the smartest men's dress socks in the world". The Calf Socks Classic with Plus+ have a "communication button" that allows the socks to speak to your iPhone.

The things your socks might tell your iPhone include: which socks belong together, how often you have washed your socks, when your socks were produced, when you ordered your socks and when your socks were dispatched. So nothing useful, like GPS tracking to find out where that missing sock has gone.

Real Ronaldo?

The island of Madeira on Wednesday renamed its airport in honour of its hometown hero Cristiano Ronaldo, a Portuguese professional footballer who plays for Spanish club Real Madrid, but people weren't happy with the likeness and so a meme was born.

Good read: During the first artificial insemination, a woman was chloroformed in front of six medical students and the "most attractive" student gave his semen. The woman was not told that her husband wasn't the father until the child was 25, and the medical student published an article...Read more here.

Video: Who doesn't love a good duet? Here's Elton and Miss Piggy with 'Don't Go Breaking My Heart'...

Got a Sideswipe? Send your pictures, links and anecdotes to Ana at ana.samways@nzherald.co.nz