The new king of Etch-a-Sketch art

You may have read about Etch-a-Sketch guru George Vlosich III right here back in June, when his talent for painstaking dial-twiddling seemed rare, his monochrome portraits of presidents and basketball players one-of-a-kind. But that was three months ago. Now a new Etch-a-Sketch sensation has captured the world's attention (or at least the Daily Mail's) and is giving young George a veritable run for his money.

Jeff Gagliardi is his name, and he lives in Colorado and has been Sketch'n for more than 30 years. (That's him to the right, holding a Sketch of himself holding a Sketch of himself holding ... you get it.) The difference between Gagliardi and Vlosich is that the former takes real masterworks of art as his subject, and while any fool can trace a great picture, reproducing Van Gogh on an Etch-a-Sketch takes real talent. (First of all, the picture has to be drawn sideways, which involves creating dots and lines that often seem to have no relation to one another until the work is finished. Moreover, the resolution on the Sketch is such that paintings have to be edited -- certain details omitted, others enhanced -- in order for them to read properly. Also, if you tilt the thing, your work is ruined.) Enough chatter, let's get to the art! (For more, check out Gagliardi's website.)



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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