Feb 1, 2023 Episode 136
Chimp gestures, new dino discovered, seaspider butts, Ticketmaster apologies to Taylor, Chinese Lantern Festival, Dutch treasure hunt
LEELA: Tons of nature news this week – from understanding chimp gestures to a new dino, and, well, spider butts. Plus, the Chinese lantern festival and a treasure hunt.
OPENING STING – LEELA: “Hey, hey, hey. Listen up. New, new, newsy – Newsy Pooloozi!”
LEELA: Hello and welcome to Newsy Pooloozi – the only WORLD news podcast for curious kids and adults! I’m your host Leela Sivasankar Prickitt and, as ever, I’m joined by the big story explainer and sound effects finder – otherwise known as my… mama!
MAMA: Hi, y’all. I’m Lyndee Prickitt.
LEELA: What a packed news it is for nature stories this week – from the new ducky-dinosaur discovered, deciphering chimp gestures and the sea-creature that can regrow its butt! Yes, I’m not making this stuff up.
Plus, Ticketmaster apologies for its Taylor Swift ticket-mess, with US senators unable to resist reciting some swifty lyrics.
Also, a special report from Taiwan on this year’s lantern festival.
And the hunt is on for treasure in the Netherlands – and not everybody is happy about it!
Alrighty then, let’s dive on in. First up, it’s the…
BIG NEWS STORY STING – VARIOUS VOICES: “The big news story of the week!”
MAMA: And the big news this week is actually….
NATURE STING – VARIOUS VOICES: “The call of nature. Get on your safari suit. Or squeeze into your scuba gear. And get ready to hop into a jeep. Or submarines. Submarine. Because Mother Nature is calling! Nature.”
MAMA: Seriously, there’s tons of nature news this week.
LEELA: And when she says tons, she’s not even talking about the bear caught on camera in Colorado, as if posing for one selfie after another.
MAMA: Oh, no we are not doing that story though we will have a link to the adorable pictures in our transcript so you can check it out, of course. But let’s start with our ancestral cousins.
LEELA: Makes monkey noises
MAMA: Is that your best chimpanzee?
LEELA: Yeah, pretty good, huh?
MAMA: OK – or you could sound like this…
SFX OF CHIMPANZEE
MAMA: But who cares about what they sound like.
LEELA: Well, hold on – we do! We did a story just in September about how chimps using drumming to communicate – Episode 116 in fact.
MAMA: Well, that is true. But guess what?
MAMA: Well, There’s more understanding about chimpanzees, which come from the forests of Central Africa, are highly intelligent and social animals.
LEELA: And our closest cousins – humans share about 98 percent of the same DNA as chimps.
MAMA: Correct. So I guess it’s no wonder that they not only gesture like we do, but according to a new study from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland – but that humans can pretty easily interpret these gestures too.
LEELA: Mama says, as she throws her hands out widely.
MAMA: Oh, I couldn’t talk without gestures. But more importantly, these findings suggest our human language might have evolved from the hand and body signals of chimpanzees.
LEELA: Well! Says me, with my hand on my hips, “You don’t say!”
MAMA: I do say, say me wagging my finger. Now, next. Last week we had two new bits of news about dinosaurs. But there’s more!
LEELA: Oh, yes. A new species, discovered in Germany, is thought to have had 400 teeth. With a long mouth that looked more like the beak of a duck.
MAMA: The researchers, from the University of Portsmouth, think it waddled around small ponds and rock pools in search of food, eating like a duck or a flamingo.
LEELA: “The duck-dino.” Has a better ring to it than a flamingo dino.
MAMA: True. Though to be clear, this new species is part of the pterosaur family. Which were technically flying reptiles rather than dinosaurs.
LEELA: So, not “dino-duck” then?
MAMA: Debatable. Now, last but definitely not least.
LEELA: Oh, no. In fact, this should really be called an oddball.
MAMA: Hmm technically, more like an odd bottom.
LEELA: Odd or rather magical…
MAMA: So true. What are we talking about, you wonder?
LEELA: Oh, none other than the creepy-crawlie sea-spider.
MAMA: Which is a type of arthropod – that means an invertebrate with an exo-or external skeleton instead of an internal skeleton or backbone.
LEELA: Thank you. And while we know other arthropods – like crabs and centipedes – can re-growing their limbs, we didn’t know they could regrow their…
MAMA: Butts. Bottoms.
LEELA: Bottoms. Bums. Anus.
MAMA: The list goes on and on for what you call on your back side but say their behinds. Though, technically, being a spider it’s really just their little bottom bit. But, yeah, more researchers from Germany – this time zoologist from Humboldt University of Berlin, in Germany – found that juvenile sea spiders could regrow body parts, including their bums, if, you know, they happened to get severed or squashed amputated somewhere another
LEELA: But not adult sea spiders.
MAMA: OK. I think we’ve maxed out on nature news this week. What do you reckon?
LEELA: Oh, yeah. I think it’s time for…
ACE STING – LEELA/MAMA: “Now it’s the ace part of our podcast: Arts, Culture and Entertainment. Darling.”
LEELA: So, you might remember a few months ago we brought you the story of the Taylor Swift Ticketmaster debacle.
MAMA: And debacle means a sudden, often embarrassing, failure or fiasco.
LEELA: Basically most fans spent hours and hours, and hours, online trying to buy tickets for her upcoming tour from Ticketmaster, but couldn’t.
MAMA: Ticketmaster blamed bots – or web robots – which were trying to gobble up all the tickets to resell them for crazy high prices. Though they failed to do this, the company claimed, the bots jammed Ticketmaster’s system. But many say the real problem is the company is just too big and there isn’t enough competition from other ticket selling outlets.
LEELA: Yep, competition usually makes companies perform better. That’s why Ticketmaster was called before the US senate. Which is kinda like getting called – not just to the principal’s office – but to the school board.
MAMA: Yep. And, during the hearing, several US senators couldn’t resist the temptation to incorporate some of Taylor’s most famous lyrics into their questioning and condemnation.
SENATOR QUESTIONS/ COMMENTS (Not transcribed)
LEELA: Well, after this creative grilling, Ticketmaster has apologised to Taylor Swift and her fans.
MAMA: We don’t know if the hearing will actually help Swifties get tickets but if evidence is presented of any anti-competitive practices by Ticketmaster
LEELA: As in pressuring artists to ONLY use them –
MAMA: Well, that could lead to big changes in the live entertainment industry in the US.
WORLD WRAP STING – LEELA: “What’s that? I’ll tell you what. That’s the halftime bell! Which means… It’s time to hear what’s making news around the rest of the world. Hold on tight, it’s around the world in 80 seconds.”
MAMA: Tensions are high between Israel and the Palestinians after a spate of attacks and increased violence. The US Secretary of State, who’s on a tour of the Middle East, is urging everyone to stay “calm” and calling for the aggression to “de-escalate,” as in, go down.
In the US state of Tennessee, police in the city of Memphis are disbanding the so-called Scorpion special unit, after disturbing video footage is released, showing its officers beating to death a black man. Tyre Nichols was pulled over for a traffic violation.
Staying in the US , a dead humpback whale mysteriously washes up in New York. This is the 14 whales to wash ashore along the US east coast since December first, and both local officials and environmentalists are trying to find out why.
And in South Australia, mobile phones are banned in some 44 high schools in an effort to help kids concentrate and behave better in class. Schools that had already implemented the ban say it’s a game-changer.
LEELA: Thank you for that… whippity-whappity-zippity-zappity wrap of what’s making headlines elsewhere in the world, Mama.
MAMA: You’re most welcome. So two weeks ago we said, “Happy New Year!”
LEELA: That would be a happy Chinese New Year.
MAMA: Quite. And 2023 is the year of the?
LEELA: Rabbit! For good luck and peace.
MAMA: Indeed. That’s episode 134 in case you want to go back and hear all about the new year customs and what the year of the rabbit means.
LEELA: And you might remember we had a very special report from our Taipei reporter Yuching Liu about the celebrations in Taiwan.
MAMA: We did indeed.
LEELA: Well, they aren’t over!
MAMA: Nope. Because it all culminates, which is a fancy ends, with –
LEELA: Not just a bang. They welcomed the new year with fireworks. But soon there will be something else in the sky to help bring in the new year.
MAMA: Over to you, Yuching!
YUCHING: The 15th day of the spring festival is Lantern Festival.
We will go visiting our relatives and friends during the Chinese new year holidays. Although we don’t meet very often, we still have a lot of fun playing together.
On the night of the Lantern Festival, the lanes and streets are bright and colourful. We will carry paper lanterns, take a walk on streets and enjoy watching decorative lanterns at parks onLantern Festival. I like to eat yuanxiao, which is made from glutinous rice with sweet filling. It’s very yummy!
That’s how I celebrate the Chinese New Year in Taiwan.
Happy new year! I wish you good luck in the year of the rabbit. 新年快樂，兔年行大運。
In Taipei, I’m Yuching Liu reporting for Newsy Pooloozi.
LEELA: Thanks, Yuching. It sounds really fun.
LEELA: And finally, let’s see what the lucky dip machine has for us this week.
ODDBALL STING – VARIOUS VOICES: “Step right up, step right up… Have a go at the lucky dip machine… What’s it gonna be today, eh? An oddball, no doubt!”
LEELA: Yes, it’s not everyday that people are on the hunt for a real buried treasure… But it’s an odd treasure that not everyone is thrilled about. Cue the music, Mama.
LEELA: Once upon a time ago, like nearly 80 years ago, the world was at war.
MAMA: That would be World War II.
LEELA: Well, according to the testimony of a German soldier, a bank in the Dutch city of Arnhem, was hit by a bomb in August 1944.
Well, the contents of an exploded vault sent jewellery, coins, precious gems and gold watches flying into the air and landing on the rubble.
Three or four occupying Nazi soldiers quickly rushed around, pocketing all they could and then quickly stashing it in ammunition boxes, where the bullets were supposed to be kept and bread boxes.
MAMA: Not very secure.
LEELA: Well, it was all they could find. Then, in the last weeks of the war, the German invaders were retreating, leaving the Netherlands and the soldiers decided to bury the treasure near a village called Ommere.
After the war a Dutch institute was set up to track down things stolen by the Nazis and they came across the story. They found him and he sketched a map.
LEELA: Well, the institute tried several times to find the buried booty after the war. But… no luck. Still, that hasn’t stopped treasure hunters – armed with metal detectors and shovels – stomping through the fields of the village after the map was made public earlier in January.
MAMA: Oh, I bet the villagers love all this new attention.
LEELA: No – they don’t. Most would like the treasure hunters to go away, though some think it’s good for people to remember the war – even if it IS in pursuit of buried booty.
FAB FACTS STING – LEELA: “And it’s time to wrap up the podcast with the top five fab facts heard today. Here goes…”
MAMA: FAB FACT NUMBER 1 – A new study from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland shows that humans interpret the gestures of chimpanzees, suggesting humans might have picked up gestering from chimps. Not surprising since humans share how much DNA with chimps?
LEELA: FAB FACT NUMBER 2 – A new species of dinosaur has been found with 400 teeth in a long mouth that looks more like the beak of a duck, even though it belongs to which family that are technically flying reptiles rather than dinosaurs?
MAMA: FAB FACT NUMBER 3 – Ticketmaster apologies to Taylor Swift and her fans after the ticketing debacle for her upcoming tour. What is a debacle?
Sudden failure or a fiasco.
LEELA: FAB FACT NUMBER 4 – People are getting ready to celebrate the Chinese Lantern Festival, which comes how many days after the start of the Chinese New Year?
MAMA: FAB FACT NUMBER 5 – Treasure hunters are descending upon a Dutch village because papers are released to the public about a treasure buried after a bomb landed on a bank sending coins and jewels into the air during which war?
Word War II
And don’t forget, if you want to test yourself later on, then go to the Lucky Dip page of our website, newsypooloozi.com, that’s pool-o-o-z-i, and take this quiz online in your own time! That’s p-o-o-l–o-o-z-i.com.
LEELA: And that almost brings us to the end of this episode of Newsy Pooloozi! But first…
MAMA: Oh, yes, we are still making our way through your fabulous reviews left on Apple Podcasts. First up is Poweramp, who wrote, “Such a great news podcast, we look forward to it every week. Though it’s intended for a young audience and it does a great job explaining tricky topics to them, the adults in my family love it too. My favourite part is hearing the voices of kid correspondents from around the world!
LEELA: And MamaBear1893 who wrote, “Fun, entertaining but most of all educational podcasts to listen to first thing in the morning.”
MAMA: Thank you! Sometimes, not often, but sometimes I do think, gosh, this podcast is a lot of work. And we don’t get paid for this, you know. But, reading these reviews and emails, really, makes it totally worth it. So
BOTH: Thank you!!
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Alrighty then, see you next week in the happy, splashy giant Newsy Pooloozi!