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"Tweet Me," "Mommy Issues" and More Offbeat Valentine's Day Candy Hearts

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If you're a fan of chalky candy (I am!), you've probably noticed that Necco's Sweethearts Conversation Hearts have gotten a bit of an overhaul in the past couple of years. Not only are the flavors different, to the chagrin of many, but the sayings have joined the rest of us in the 21st century as well.

It's not the first time the conversation has changed. In the mid-'90s, the basic Sweethearts were given a small update to get rid of some of the outdated sayings, but replacement gems like “Fax Me” and “Beep Me” quickly became obsolete again. Then, throughout the naughts, Necco added a handful of themed sayings every year. For example, 2009 was a cooking theme, which resulted in sayings such as "Top Chef" and "Table 4 Two." The hearts got a total overhaul in 2010 when Necco let candy connoisseurs vote on 10 new sayings for the first time in the company's history. The winners included “Tweet Me” and “Text Me,” among others that aren’t technology-oriented.

If Tweeting and texting don't trip your trigger, though, here are a few more interesting sayings from a post that originally ran last Valentine's Day.

1. “Forks.” Before you start wondering why Necco has decided to pay tribute to utensils, you should know that this one is from the Twilight-themed Conversation Hearts that hit stores in 2009. In case you’re not a Twi-hard, Forks is the name of the town where most of the action takes place.

2. “Mommy Issues.” This one comes to you from BitterSweets, a line of candy that includes themes such as Dumped, Dejected, Dysfunctional. Other awesome sayings include “U left seat up,” “Aging Poorly,” and “Pwned! Meh.”

3. “Nice t***.” Whoops.

What was probably a joke by a bored Brach’s assembly line employee ended up being not so funny when a 12-year-old California girl found it in her bag of candy in 2011. Check out a picture of the offending confection at Geekologie.

4. “Please send a lock of your hair by return mail.” Back in the early days of what were then called “Motto Hearts,” the concept was a bit different – instead of being printed right on the candy, candy makers did it up fortune-cookie style by putting slips of paper inside of little crispy candies. And the shapes weren’t just restricted to hearts – others included watches, baseballs and envelopes.

5. “Married in Pink, He will take to drink.” Although Necco started using vegetable coloring and a stamp to print sayings directly on the candy in the 1860s, they didn’t stop with the ridiculously long sayings. They were popular at weddings, hence the charming saying here. Others included the rhyme stretch “Married in satin, Love will not be lasting” and “Married in white, You have chosen right.”

6. “Stud Muffin.” Perhaps a bit risque for the children’s candy here in the U.S., “Stud muffin” is on the U.K. equivalent of Conversation Hearts, cleverly called Love Hearts.

7. “Let’s Read.” Nice, and to that I say, “Yes, please.” But is that really Valentine’s Day material? Is it a euphemism? Is that what the kids are saying these days?

8. “Get My Drift.” Necco added some weather-themed hearts in 2009 called “Love’s in the Forecast,” the pickup line your local weatherman uses when he goes out for drinks.

9. “You are gay.” It didn’t mean the same thing back when it was originally printed, which is why Necco pulled it from the ranks for being “outdated,” along with “Dig it.”

10. “Odyssey.” A bit cryptic for a piece of candy, perhaps, but it was part of the 2001 theme “Limitless love.” 2001… odyssey… get it?

Not a fan of the chalky taste of the candies, but like the way they look? DIYers have tons of ideas for you, including a wreath, framed art and jewelry.

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FRED TANNEAU/AFP/Getty Images
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Animals
Fisherman Catches Rare Blue Lobster, Donates It to Science
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FRED TANNEAU/AFP/Getty Images

Live lobsters caught off the New England coast are typically brown, olive-green, or gray—which is why one New Hampshire fisherman was stunned when he snagged a blue one in mid-July.

As The Independent reports, Greg Ward, from Rye, New Hampshire, discovered the unusual lobster while examining his catch near the New Hampshire-Maine border. Ward initially thought the pale crustacean was an albino lobster, which some experts estimate to be a one-in-100-million discovery. However, a closer inspection revealed that the lobster's hard shell was blue and cream.

"This one was not all the way white and not all the way blue," Ward told The Portsmouth Herald. "I've never seen anything like it."

While not as rare as an albino lobster, blue lobsters are still a famously elusive catch: It's said that the odds of their occurrence are an estimated one in two million, although nobody knows the exact numbers.

Instead of eating the blue lobster, Ward decided to donate it to the Seacoast Science Center in Rye. There, it will be studied and displayed in a lobster tank with other unusually colored critters, including a second blue lobster, a bright orange lobster, and a calico-spotted lobster.

[h/t The Telegraph]

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Courtesy Murdoch University
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Animals
Australian Scientists Discover First New Species of Sunfish in 125 Years
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Courtesy Murdoch University

Scientists have pinpointed a whole new species of the largest bony fish in the world, the massive sunfish, as we learned from Smithsonian magazine. It's the first new species of sunfish proposed in more than 125 years.

As the researchers report in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, the genetic differences between the newly named hoodwinker sunfish (Mola tecta) and its other sunfish brethren was confirmed by data on 27 different samples of the species collected over the course of three years. Since sunfish are so massive—the biggest can weigh as much as 5000 pounds—they pose a challenge to preserve and store, even for museums with large research collections. Lead author Marianne Nyegaard of Murdoch University in Australia traveled thousands of miles to find and collected genetic data on sunfish stranded on beaches. At one point, she was asked if she would be bringing her own crane to collect one.

Nyegaard also went back through scientific literature dating back to the 1500s, sorting through descriptions of sea monsters and mermen to see if any of the documentation sounded like observations of the hoodwinker. "We retraced the steps of early naturalists and taxonomists to understand how such a large fish could have evaded discovery all this time," she said in a press statement. "Overall, we felt science had been repeatedly tricked by this cheeky species, which is why we named it the 'hoodwinker.'"

Japanese researchers first detected genetic differences between previously known sunfish and a new, unknown species 10 years ago, and this confirms the existence of a whole different type from species like the Mola mola or Mola ramsayi.

Mola tecta looks a little different from other sunfish, with a more slender body. As it grows, it doesn't develop the protruding snout or bumps that other sunfish exhibit. Similarly to the others, though, it can reach a length of 8 feet or more. 

Based on the stomach contents of some of the specimens studied, the hoodwinker likely feeds on salps, a jellyfish-like creature that it probably chomps on (yes, sunfish have teeth) during deep dives. The species has been found near New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, and southern Chile.

[h/t Smithsonian]

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