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Meet Your Candidates for People's Tribune

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Okay, folks, the real election season may be coming to a close but ours is in full swing. Below are your three candidates for People's Tribune. You'll be hearing more from them later in the week, but for now, let's do the whole meet-and-greet, grip-and-grin thing:

Tucker Steele
Campaign slogan: "I will establish a meritocracy throughout the land, at least until I can figure out how to get campaign contributions."
Speech! Speech!: As a longtime reader of mental_floss, I know I would make a fantastic "People's Tribune." I know I can represent readers by personally revealing the solutions to P ≠ NP, the location of Hoffa's body, and why people are stilling flying to Vegas and dropping $100 on a Celine Dion ticket. As JFK once said, "Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country," and while you are asking your country a question, please promote me, Tucker Steele, for PEOPLE'S TRIBUNE.

Mike Landau
Campaign slogan: "I know more useless information than anyone on the face of the planet."
Speech! Speech!: I am working on my Ph.D. in psychology at the University of Georgia. I have 23 consecutive years of education. I think I'm losing my mind. I would really like to win something. Please select me as the Tribune.

Lyssa (we're assuming she goes by one name, like Beyonce)
Campaign slogan: "Lyssa! Helping people since at least 10 o'clock this morning."
Speech! Speech!: Why should I be your candidate? Since "'cause I said so" only works with my sister's kids and a wussy ex-boyfriend, here's why! 1. Some might categorize me as a lurker. I say that I'm just so sneaky, you don't notice me participating. My ninja-like commenting skills go unnoticed by the untrained eye. And who doesn't love ninja skills? "Vote Lyssa, she's stealthy!" 2. I'm diverse! I love art, literature and science, but I am also known for sending friends gross facts and icky bug pictures to ruin their lunch. "Lyssa. Representing Shakespeare AND things you want to poke with sticks." 3. I'm full of great ideas! You want free healthcare? I propose Cooperative Preventative Healthcare Plan 2006! Every time you see a co-worker doing something that might potentially damage their health, you point a rolled up newspaper at them and go, "NO. No. BAD." (But you don't smack them with it. Cause that's mean. And you could cause a bruise or pull a muscle, defeating the purpose of Cooperative Preventative Healthcare Plan 2006.) ... Great ideas, diversity and ninja skills. You can't beat that with a nun holding a yardstick.

Start making your pro and con lists now; voting takes place on Wednesday. No hanging chads, we promise.

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Hulton Archive/Getty Images
6 Radiant Facts About Irène Joliot-Curie
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Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Though her accomplishments are often overshadowed by those of her parents, the elder daughter of Marie and Pierre Curie was a brilliant researcher in her own right.


A black and white photo of Irene and Marie Curie in the laboratory in 1925.
Irène and Marie in the laboratory, 1925.
Wellcome Images, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY 4.0

Irène’s birth in Paris in 1897 launched what would become a world-changing scientific dynasty. A restless Marie rejoined her loving husband in the laboratory shortly after the baby’s arrival. Over the next 10 years, the Curies discovered radium and polonium, founded the science of radioactivity, welcomed a second daughter, Eve, and won a Nobel Prize in Physics. The Curies expected their daughters to excel in their education and their work. And excel they did; by 1925, Irène had a doctorate in chemistry and was working in her mother’s laboratory.


Like her mother, Irène fell in love in the lab—both with her work and with another scientist. Frédéric Joliot joined the Curie team as an assistant. He and Irène quickly bonded over shared interests in sports, the arts, and human rights. The two began collaborating on research and soon married, equitably combining their names and signing their work Irène and Frédéric Joliot-Curie.


Black and white photo of Irène and Fréderic Joliot-Curie working side by side in their laboratory.
Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

Their passion for exploration drove them ever onward into exciting new territory. A decade of experimentation yielded advances in several disciplines. They learned how the thyroid gland absorbs radioiodine and how the body metabolizes radioactive phosphates. They found ways to coax radioactive isotopes from ordinarily non-radioactive materials—a discovery that would eventually enable both nuclear power and atomic weaponry, and one that earned them the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1935.


The humanist principles that initially drew Irène and Frédéric together only deepened as they grew older. Both were proud members of the Socialist Party and the Comité de Vigilance des Intellectuels Antifascistes (Vigilance Committee of Anti-Fascist Intellectuals). They took great pains to keep atomic research out of Nazi hands, sealing and hiding their research as Germany occupied their country, Irène also served as undersecretary of state for scientific research of the Popular Front government.


Irène eventually scaled back her time in the lab to raise her children Hélène and Pierre. But she never slowed down, nor did she stop fighting for equality and freedom for all. Especially active in women’s rights groups, she became a member of the Comité National de l'Union des Femmes Françaises and the World Peace Council.


Irène’s extraordinary life was a mirror of her mother’s. Tragically, her death was, too. Years of watching radiation poisoning and cancer taking their toll on Marie never dissuaded Irène from her work. In 1956, dying of leukemia, she entered the Curie Hospital, where she followed her mother’s luminous footsteps into the great beyond.

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Live Smarter
You Can Now Order Food Through Facebook
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After a bit of controversy over its way of aggregating news feeds and some questionable content censoring policies, it’s nice to have Facebook roll out a feature everyone can agree on: allowing you to order food without leaving the social media site.

According to a press release, Facebook says that the company decided to begin offering food delivery options after realizing that many of its users come to the social media hub to rate and discuss local eateries. Rather than hop from Facebook to the restaurant or a delivery service, you’ll be able to stay within the app and select from a menu of food choices. Just click “Order Food” from the Explore menu on a desktop interface or under the “More” option on Android or iOS devices. There, you’ll be presented with options that will accept takeout or delivery orders, as well as businesses participating with services like or EatStreet.

If you need to sign up and create an account with or Jimmy John’s, for example, you can do that without leaving Facebook. The feature is expected to be available nationally, effective immediately.

[h/t Forbes]


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