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Thursday Flakes: Mind Reading, Grocery Delivery and a Turtle Thief

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Photo by ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP via Getty Images

I hope everyone is safe and sound after the big storm system that rolled through Nebraska yesterday. I’m settling down in Mexico City but I was following the news and watching clips from the storms yesterday. I’ll be settling down in Mexico for a few months after spending most of the summer and fall traveling around North American and Europe. Maybe I’ll recap my yearly travel highlights in a future post.

Early Signing Day just wrapped up but an exciting few days are ahead for Husker spots starting with the big volleyball game tonight against Pittsburgh, which I’m really excited about.

I was also excited to peruse through the end-of-the-year lists of travel destinations for 2022. I’ve posted some of them below so you are welcome to share of your thoughts and whether or not you plan to visit any of these places in 2022. Enjoy.

Anyways onto Flakes...

Flakes

Nebraska Cornhuskers Early Signing Day | Football | Corn Nation

A quick review of all the Husker recruits who signed their letter of intent.

Nebraska Volleyball vs Pitt: What You Need to Know | Women’s Volleyball | Corn Nation

Corn Nation’s own Beth Merrigan has an excellent breakdown of what to expect in Nebraska Volleyball’s semi-final match against Pittsburgh.

Three Nebraska Players Named AVCA All-Americans | Women’s Volleyball | Corn Nation

Three Nebraska volleyball players were selected to the 2021 American Volleyball Coaches Association All-America Team. Lexi Rodriguez picked up first-team All-America honors, Kayla Caffey second-team recognition, and Madi Kubik earned third-team status. Nicklin Hames is All-America Honorable Mention.

Frost Talks Early 2022 Recruiting Class | Football | Hail Varsity

Frost said that Nebraska is leaning toward taking another quarterback from the transfer portal. However, Nebraska will “look at every kid we can” that’s in the transfer portal, with a primary focus on quarterback. “It has to be the right one,” he said during the Huskers’ signing day press conference on Wednesday.

Mailbag: Transfer Portal Quarterback Talk, Offensive Line Improvement and More | Sports | Hail Varsity

Though there’s recruiting news all over the place, the mailbag never sleeps. This week’s edition tackles the quarterback and offensive line dilemmas at Nebraska, if there should even be a signing day now that the transfer portal has changed the game, and much more.

Padding the Stats: Lexi Sun’s Legacy in Lincoln | Volleyball | Hail Varsity

All-American. Business woman. Great teammate. Role model. Sun has proven to be all these things and more during her four years in Lincoln, and I think that will be her legacy long after her playing days are over.

Huskers Set for Battle With Bulldogs | Women’s Basketball | Huskers.com

The Huskers are coming off a 78-50 win over Drake’s Missouri Valley Conference counterpart Indiana State on Saturday, Dec. 11. The win over the Sycamores gave NU just the second 10-0 start in school history, joining the Big Red’s 30-0 start by the 2009-10 team on its way to a Big 12 title and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

College Football’s Luckiest and Unluckiest Teams in 2021: Fate Not on Nebraska’s Side | Football | ESPN

For teams like Nebraska, meanwhile, postgame win expectancy can create both hope and overwhelming despair. All three of the Huskers’ wins featured 100% postgame win expectancy, but they somehow lost the Purdue game and dropped four relative toss-ups that ended up with expectancy between 37% and 49%. The volume of Nebraska’s tight losses was frankly awe-inspiring, but the Huskers had plenty of partners in pain.

Travel

22 Best Places to Go in 2022 | Travel | Conde Nast Traveler

This year’s list of the best places to visit reflects these shifts in thinking: We’ve organized these destinations based on some of our favorite reasons to travel, from exhilarating food and drink scenes and historic sites to explore, to new places to soak in the great outdoors.

25 Amazing Journeys for 2022 | Travel | National Geographic

Five categories—Nature, Adventure, Sustainability, Culture and History, and Family—frame unforgettable journeys of discovery. This year’s list celebrates a number of World Heritage sites in honor of UNESCO’s 50 years of helping to safeguard cultural and natural treasures.

Best in Travel 2022 | Travel | Lonely Planet

These destinations span the globe and allow you, the traveler, to experience a wide swath of breathtaking experiences, from trekking across fjords in Iceland to watching a fashion show from an up-and-coming designer in Nigeria. Carefully selected by our editors, our list is meant to inspire and excite you, and help you make your 2022 travel dreams a reality.

Expedia Publishes 2022 Travel Trends Report | Travel | Lonely Planet

The report found that two-thirds of Americans are planning on taking big trips in the next year, and have termed it the “Greatest of All Trips” (GOAT) mindset. The research found that U.S. travelers are in particular most likely to seek out excitement (41 percent of Americans) and the feeling of making the most of their trips (40 percent) while vacationing. Most travelers are also likely to splurge on travel in the year to come (also 40 percent).

Brazil to Implement Quarantine for Unvaccinated Arrivals | Travel | Lonely Planet

Travelers must present a negative COVID-19 test before departing for Brazil. Unvaccinated passengers will now have to quarantine for five days at the address registered in their traveler declaration form, the government announced. Once the five days are up, travelers must submit a second negative test and check-in with local health authorities before they’re permitted to leave quarantine.

Quintana Roo Governor Says Mexican State Safe for Tourists | Travel | Travel Pulse

The governor of the Mexican state of Quintana Roo said the popular tourism destination remains safe and secure for visitors despite a new warning from the United States government. According to the Riviera Maya News, Quintana Roo Governor Carlos Joaquin Gonzalez announced the launch of a special security program that would boast additional security ahead of the typically busy winter holiday travel period.

The Hermit of Socotra Island | Travel | BBC

He fishes by hand, lives alone in a remote cave and is a living testament to the way residents once lived on this far-flung island in Yemen.

Angkor Wat: Asia’s Ancient ‘Hydraulic City’ | Travel | BBC

Angkor Wat attracts millions of visitors a year, but most know little of the intricate and vast water system that fed the empire’s rise and demise.

The Rest

Where Are Younger People Most Optimistic? In Poorer Nations. | Psychology | The New York Times

More than half of Americans, young and old, say children today will be less economically successful than their parents, a global survey shows.

The Science of Mind Reading | Science | The New Yorker

Researchers are pursuing age-old questions about the nature of thoughts—and learning how to read them.

America’s Gambling Addiction is Metastasizing | Science | The Atlantic

The most straightforward reason for the surge in gambling is a change to the law: In 2018, the Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, opening the door to online sports betting across 21 states. As a direct result, sports-betting revenues grew 69 percent from 2019 to 2020 and another 270 percent during the first quarter of 2021.

How An Excel TikToker Manifested Her Way Into Making Six Figures | Social Media | The Verge

Kat Norton is a Microsoft Excel influencer. She has over a million followers on TikTok and Instagram, where she goes by the name Miss Excel, and she’s leveraged that into a software training business that is now generating up to six figures of revenue a day. That’s six figures a day. And she’s only been doing this since June 2020.

Inside the High Stakes World of Undercover Wildlife Agents | Animals | Backpacker

Animals can’t talk. But Ed Newcomer can. As an elite U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service detective, he goes undercover to protect threatened raptors, bears, even butterflies—and bring poachers and smugglers to court. Inside the agency’s latest covert operation.

To Catch a Turtle Thief: Blowing the Lid Off an International Smuggling Operation | Crime | The Walrus

As it was being sorted, a customs agent saw the package move. Inside the envelope was a slim cardboard box with holes along its sides. Inside that box were two small fabric pouches with duct-taped edges. An agent carefully opened the pouches into a plastic mail-carrying bin. Golf ball–size baby turtles emerged, crawling toward corners, scrambling over one another’s shells, and shuffling up the box’s walls. There were eleven turtles in total.

Meth, Vanilla and ‘Gulags’: How China Has Overtaken the South Pacific One Island at a Time | World | Politico

What’s happening in Tonga is a microcosm of China’s expanding global influence and why the United States is losing ground fast.

The Dark Side of 15-Minute Grocery Delivery | Business | Bloomberg

Mini-warehouses dubbed “dark stores” are quietly taking over urban retail space. Left unregulated, the insatiable demand for faster delivery will only hasten the erosion of community life.