Intermission: Calvin and Hobbes Do Christmas

A short film animates the various ways to kill a snowman.


Remember the storyline in the Calvin and Hobbes cartoons about the terrible things the mischievous pair liked to do to snowmen? They invented all sorts of new and innovative ways to "kill" their snow creatures: a giant snow chicken beheaded one, a car ran over one, snow sharks chased one down as he "swam" away. Those comics showed why Bill Watterson was one of the greatest cartoonists ever—they mixed a dark sense of humor with vivid drawings and terrific dialogue. "Oh yeah? Define 'well-adjusted,'" Calvin retorts to his mother when she stumbles on one of his creations.

Watterson retired in 1995, but this year, Calvin's snowmen came to life thanks to filmmakers Jim Frommeyer and Teague Chrystie. Using Play-Do, clay, and paper maché, they created a perfect tribute to Watterson and winter. It might be a bit macabre for some people less than a week before Christmas, but for scores of Watterson devotees, it goes perfectly with eggnogg and cookies.


Some beauty pageants, like the Miss America competition, have done away with the swimsuit portions of the competitions, thus dipping their toes in the 21st century. Other aspects of beauty pageants remain stuck in the 1950s, and we're not even talking about the whole "judging women mostly on their looks" thing. One beauty pageant winner was disqualified for being a mom, as if you can't be beautiful after you've had a kid. Now she's trying to get the Miss World competition to update their rules.

Veronika Didusenko won the Miss Ukraine pageant in 2018. After four days, she was disqualified because pageant officials found out she was a mom to 5-year-old son Alex, and had been married. Didusenko said she had been aware of Miss World's rule barring mother from competing, but was encouraged to compete anyways by pageant organizers.

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One mystery in our universe is a step closer to being solved. NASA's Parker Solar Probe launched last year to help scientists understand the sun. Now, it has returned its first findings. Four papers were published in the journal Nature detailing the findings of Parker's first two flybys. It's one small step for a solar probe, one giant leap for mankind.

It is astounding that we've advanced to the point where we've managed to build a probe capable of flying within 15 million miles from the surface of the sun, but here we are. Parker can withstand temperatures of up to 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit and travels at 430,000 miles per hour. It's the fastest human-made vehicle, and no other human-made object has been so close to the sun.

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via Sportstreambest / Flickr

Since the mid '90s the phrase "God Forgives, Brothers Don't" has been part of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point's football team's lexicon.

Over the past few years, the team has taken the field flying a black skull-and-crossbones flag with an acronym for the phrase, "GFBD" on the skull's upper lip. Supporters of the team also use it on social media as #GFBD.

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