Breaking Down The Tourney

I will be using my free time today to watch hours and hours of college basketball and curse my predictive powers. So here's a quick look at the NCAA Tournament by the numbers, according to ESPN Page 2:

$1.5 billion: Amount of lost workplace productivity due to the tournament, according to the consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas

$2.5 billion: FBI's estimated amount of illegal wagering in office pools and other bets

$37.39: Cost for a half-case of HammerMill color copy paper at Staples

$109.99: Cost at Staples for a two-pack of toner cartridges for a Canon ImageRunner 9070

9,223,372,036,854,775,808 to 1: Odds on picking a perfect bracket according to

$15,452.75: Average annual cost to attend the No. 1 seeds if you live in state

$28,101: Average annual cost to attend the No. 1 seeds if you live out of state

$14,469.75: Average annual cost to attend the No. 16 seeds if you live in state

$19,734.75: Average annual cost to attend the No. 16 seeds if you live out of state

$70,322,772: Average athletic budget at the No. 1 seeds according to Blue Ribbon

$9,056,728.75: Average athletic budget at the No. 16 seeds according to Blue Ribbon

$1.36: Salary you wasted your employer by reading this list

If you're wondering (I know you're not wondering), I've got Florida, Kansas, Texas and Texas A&M in the Final Four, with Kansas beating A&M for the title. In a separate pool, I have Florida, Kansas, Georgetown and Ohio State, with G-Town toppling the Gators to cut down the nets.  So far today I'm 2-1 and 3-0.

Bone Broth 101

Whether you drink it on its own or use it as stock, bone broth is the perfect recipe to master this winter. Special thanks to the Institute of Culinary Education

Why Can Parrots Talk and Other Birds Can't?

If you've ever seen a pirate movie (or had the privilege of listening to this avian-fronted metal band), you're aware that parrots have the gift of human-sounding gab. Their brains—not their beaks—might be behind the birds' ability to produce mock-human voices, the Sci Show's latest video explains below.

While parrots do have articulate tongues, they also appear to be hardwired to mimic other species, and to create new vocalizations. The only other birds that are capable of vocal learning are hummingbirds and songbirds. While examining the brains of these avians, researchers noted that their brains contain clusters of neurons, which they've dubbed song nuclei. Since other birds don't possess song nuclei, they think that these structures probably play a key role in vocal learning.

Parrots might be better at mimicry than hummingbirds and songbirds thanks to a variation in these neurons: a special shell layer that surrounds each one. Birds with larger shell regions appear to be better at imitating other creatures, although it's still unclear why.

Learn more about parrot speech below (after you're done jamming out to Hatebeak).


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