The Quick 10: 10 Reasons Jason English Will Make a Great Dad

As you may or may not know, our own Jason English is due to become a first-time dad pretty much any minute now, so we thought we'd honor him with the Quick 10 today. We consulted our mental_floss staffers to see why they thought JE would make a good dad "“ here are the results.

10 Reasons Jason English Will Make a Great Dad

1. Will read Baby English the current values of his baseball cards instead of bedtime stories.

2. Instead of repeatedly watching the Wiggles and the Doodlebops, Jason will make his kid watch Sports Night DVDs over and over.

3. Will be a great SAT prep source due to his unique ability to explain everything in analogies. Unfortunately, his kid will have to travel back in time to 1997 to find that section on an SAT exam.

4. Has a killer Big Bird costume to hand down to his first-born. (For other embarrassing childhood photos of _floss readers and staffers, check out this post from Ransom)

5. Will be ready for child #2 after honing mediating skills on the baby and Bailey.

6. When being the boss doesn't work for him, he can always turn to The Boss instead (Jason was quite excited about this article)

7. Already has extensive scouting experience to pass on to English Jr.

8. Will turn kid into a champion debater by exposing him or her to the McLaughlin Group at an early age. (Mangesh says Jason has a "bizarre fascination" with the show)

9. Can keep the baby entertained with his first-hand account of Noah's Ark.

10. Is excited to have the baby despite lack of incentives.

And, as a side note, we fully expect the baby to be dressed exclusively in mental_floss onesies.

The Secret World War II History Hidden in London's Fences

In South London, the remains of the UK’s World War II history are visible in an unlikely place—one that you might pass by regularly and never take a second look at. In a significant number of housing estates, the fences around the perimeter are actually upcycled medical stretchers from the war, as the design podcast 99% Invisible reports.

During the Blitz of 1940 and 1941, the UK’s Air Raid Precautions department worked to protect civilians from the bombings. The organization built 60,000 steel stretchers to carry injured people during attacks. The metal structures were designed to be easy to disinfect in case of a gas attack, but that design ended up making them perfect for reuse after the war.

Many London housing developments at the time had to remove their fences so that the metal could be used in the war effort, and once the war was over, they were looking to replace them. The London County Council came up with a solution that would benefit everyone: They repurposed the excess stretchers that the city no longer needed into residential railings.

You can tell a stretcher railing from a regular fence because of the curves in the poles at the top and bottom of the fence. They’re hand-holds, designed to make it easier to carry it.

Unfortunately, decades of being exposed to the elements have left some of these historic artifacts in poor shape, and some housing estates have removed them due to high levels of degradation. The Stretcher Railing Society is currently working to preserve these heritage pieces of London infrastructure.

As of right now, though, there are plenty of stretchers you can still find on the streets. If you're in the London area, this handy Google map shows where you can find the historic fencing.

[h/t 99% Invisible]

Custom-Design the Ugly Christmas Sweater of Your Dreams (or Nightmares)

For those of you aspiring to be the worst dressed person at your family's holiday dinner, sells—you guessed it—ugly Christmas sweaters to seasonal revelers possessing a sense of irony. But the Michigan-based online retailer has elevated kitsch to new heights by offering a create-your-own-sweater tool on its website.

Simply visit the site's homepage, and click on the Sweater Customizer link. There, you'll be provided with a basic sweater template, which you can decorate with festive snowflakes, reindeer, and other designs in five different colors. If you're feeling really creative, you can even upload photos, logos, hand-drawn pictures, and/or text. After you approve and purchase a mock-up of the final design, you can purchase the final result (prices start at under $70). But you'd better act quickly: due to high demand, orders will take about two weeks plus shipping time to arrive.


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