CLOSE
Original image

I Want My: Dead Sea

Original image

I know the Great Salt Lake is closer and all...But there's just something about a body of water with 30% salinity that's so, well, genius. Plus, now that I'm loosed back into the world after my show was canned, I'm attracted to any place that reeks of being a decent nadir. Or, in this case, beyond decent--the Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth not covered by ice. And while I'm sure those other points covered by ice have their charm, I never read about King David or Aristotle or Cleopatra congregating there for a little downtime with healing minerals. And due to its density, the Dead Sea is straight-up supportive--you can jump in the water and start poring over some gnostic manuscripts without even having to doggy paddle. It's also a great place to run into a ton of potash--the subject of the first U.S. patent!--so maybe look for me to start wholesaling soap, glass, and assorted fertilizers shortly...

Original image
iStock
China Launches Crowdfunding Campaign to Restore the Great Wall
Original image
iStock

The Great Wall of China has been standing proudly for thousands of years—but now, it needs your help. CNN reports that the wall has fallen into disrepair and the China Foundation for Cultural Heritage Conservation has launched an online crowdfunding campaign to raise money for restorations.

Stretching 13,000 miles across northern China, the Great Wall was built in stages starting from the third century BCE and reaching completion in the 16th century. To some degree, though, it’s always been under construction. For centuries, individuals and organizations have periodically repaired and rebuilt damaged sections. However, the crowdfunding campaign marks the first time the internet has gotten involved in the preservation of the ancient icon. The China Foundation for Cultural Heritage Conservation is trying to raise $1.6 million (11 million yuan) to restore the wall, and has so far raised $45,000 (or 300,000 yuan).

Fundraising coordinator Dong Yaohui tells the BBC that, although the Chinese government provides some funds for wall repairs, it’s not enough to fix all of the damage: "By pooling the contribution of every single individual, however small it is, we will be able to form a great wall to protect the Great Wall," he said.

[h/t CNN]

Know of something you think we should cover? Email us at tips@mentalfloss.com.

Original image
YouTube // Deep Look
These Glowing Worms Mimic Shining Stars
Original image
YouTube // Deep Look

The glow worms of New Zealand's Waitomo caves produce light, mimicking the starry night sky. Using sticky goop, they catch moths and other flying creatures unfortunate enough to flutter into the "starry" cavern. Beautiful and icky in equal parts, this Deep Look video takes you inside the cave, and up close with these worms. Enjoy:

There's also a nice write-up with animated GIFs if you're not in the mood for video. Want more glow worms? Check out this beautiful timelapse in a similar cave, or our list of 19 Places You Won't Believe Exist topped by—you guessed it—New Zealand's Glowworm Caves!

SECTIONS

More from mental floss studios