The Upbeat

  • Woman attempts to wear only recycled outfits for 365 days

    Claudine Zap at The Upbeat7 mths ago

    Despite fashion industry efforts to make clothing production more sustainable, a lot of clothes still end up at the dump. It’s an “urgent problem to encourage consumers to decrease clothing wastage entering landfill,” she wrote to Yahoo News in an email.

    Dean, who is the founder of the environmentally focused fashion organization Redress, and who was at the dump for another project, took a vow to wear only “100% dumped, discarded or donated secondhand clothes” everyday of 2013, except for shoes and underthings, which were her own.

    And we’re not talking about coming up with ten outfits and then rotating. No, no. Dean wanted 365 different looks, a new one each and every day.

    So far, so good. Dean sorts through castaway clothing each month, looking for 30 outfits, which are then photographed at GetRedressed on Instagram. At the end of the year, the outfits will be auctioned to benefit Redress and Friends of the Earth.

    Each month has a theme, such as “DIY,” “on trend,” or “little black dress.” If these sound challenging, Dean has a stylist on hand to help choose the outfits, which are not always to her taste.

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  • Rare — and adorable — baby elephant born in Indonesia

    Claudine Zap at The Upbeat7 mths ago

    Cuteness alert: A female baby elephant was born Aug. 9 in Indonesia’s Tesso Nilo National Park, the World Wildlife Fund announced. The Tesso Nilo calf’s mother is 35 years old and a trooper: She was pregnant for 20-22 months before giving birth to the 90-kilo (198-pound) baby only a few days before World Elephant Day, according to the animal conservation organization.

    The calf’s mother is part of an elite team of critically endangered Sumatran elephants and their handlers who protect villages from coming into conflict with nearby wild elephants.

    Only four elephants have been born to the group since it was established by the World Wildlife Fund and Indonesia's Ministry of Forestry in 2004.

    The so-called Flying Squad is made up of four trained adult elephants and their eight handlers, called mahouts, who deploy noisemakers, lights and a truck to drive back the wild elephants who try to enter local villages.

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  • Dolphins remember their old friends, study finds

    Claudine Zap at The Upbeat8 mths ago

    Not only do dolphins make friends, they also apparently remember them for decades.

    Researchers noticed that dolphins in captivity that had been separated for as long as 20 years still recognize their former tank mates' calls, according to a study reported on LiveScience.com.

    In the study, scientists were able to track dolphins who had met previously, and here's how they did it: Over five years, researchers followed 43 dolphins in six institutions in the United States and Bermuda. Dolphins are moved around a lot, but institutions keep careful records. Also, each dolphin develops a unique whistle that is like a dolphin handle recognized by their fellow dolphins. Researchers were equipped with recordings of 1,200 bottle-nosed dolphin whistles that they played for the 43 dolphins over speakers.

    When the dolphins recognized a whistle — even if it was one from a tank mate from years before — they would stop, swim up to the speaker and sometimes whistle back to their buddies. For those they had never heard, there was no response.

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  • Daniel Maree wins $100,000 grand prize Do Something award

    Claudine Zap at The Upbeat8 mths ago

    Daniel Maree, who made the hoodie a symbol of social activism, won a $100,000 grand prize award for his organization, Million Hoodie Movement for Justice, from the group DoSomething.org.

    The star-studded event was held at the Avalon in Hollywood and aired live on VH1. Celebrities were also recognized for their charitable work, including Jennifer Hudson, Patrick Dempsey, LL Cool J and Kelly Osbourne. Sophia Bush hosted the festivities and announced the grand prize winner.

    “This is for Trayvon Martin, this is for Oscar Grant,” said Maree when his name was announced. “This is for all the million hoodies across the United States. Thank you so much.”

    Maree, a digital strategist who lived for a time in Gainesville, Fla., says he experienced racial profiling firsthand. He was spurred to action after the shooting death of the unarmed 17-year-old, hoodie-wearing Trayvon Martin, in Sanford, Fla., last year.

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  • For 70th birthday, Bay Area teacher plans bike trip to Brazil

    Claudine Zap at The Upbeat9 mths ago

    Most people who turn 70 usually are happy blowing out a bunch of candles on a birthday cake.

    Capoeira teacherMestre Acordeon, who turns 70 on Aug. 30, will celebrate by undertaking an epic bike ride from his home in Berkeley, Calif., down to Bahia, Brazil.

    It’s not a straight shot; he plans to make stops along the way, teaching Capoeira, which is a Brazilian martial art, and getting to know the people wherever he visits.

    “I want to improve as a Capoeira teacher and as a human being,” Acordeon told Yahoo News over the phone.

    It sounds like a lot for anyone, let alone a septuagenarian, but Acordeon has a mission. “It’s not a marathon. It’s not a bicycle competition. It is an encounter with myself,” Acordeon said.

    He said the most he has ridden is 165 miles. For this trip, he plans to ride five to six hours a day, or 45 to 50 miles. Some days less, some days more. Although he hopes to be in Bahia for his 71st birthday, he has allowed 400 days for the journey, so he might not be.

    “It’s the force of the water that takes me to the sea of Bahia,” Acordeon said, quoting a Brazilian song. “It’s in that spirit that I ride.”

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  • Injured kitty in Japan takes Web by storm

    Claudine Zap at The Upbeat9 mths ago

    The Web loves a good cat picture. But when the photo showed a tiny rescued creature in a crocheted outfit, the Internet took a collective swoon.

    The images of the teeny feline have been tweeted by the kitten’s owner, known by her Twitter handle, @jessiepon. The kitten, dubbed Wasabi-chan, was taken in after being badly injured by a bird.

    “She was rescued after being attacked by a crow,” Reddit user DopeSk1llz posted. “Her top jaw was fractured, a hole in her throat, tongue was ripped, and part of gum was eaten.

    The rescuer was feeding her with a tube which Wasabi-chan hates, thus this crochet straitjacket (Grandma's handmade) to hold her down while feeding.”

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