Trump’s corona confusion; dinosaur shark cannibals; Ash Barty stays number one; and the space potty has lift-off!
Space age potty:
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US President Donald Trump shocked the world last week when he confirmed he and his wife, Melania had tested positive to the coronavirus.
And yesterday, he again set tongues wagging when he decided to leave his hospital room for a little joy ride to wave to well-wishers gathered outside – as if to prove to the American people that he was on the mend.
It came as confusion continues about how seriously ill the President is. That’s because some officials briefing the media have said that he isn’t great, but others have said that he’s doing fine.
Why is this such a big deal? Because he is 74 years old, and COVID has been proven to be more dangerous in older people. And as the leader of one of the most powerful countries in the world, President Trump’s health is something that has ramifications in all corners of the world. Oh – and there’s an election in America in only 28 days. So, you know, there’s a bit going on.
On the subject of a bit going on – a word you’re going to hear a lot today in the news is ‘budget’. What it means is that PM Scott Morrison and his Treasurer Josh Frydenberg will today set out the economic plan for the year ahead. Which is to say: they will tell us all how they intend to spend the money that’s been borrowed and what projects will be launched to get the country working again after the coronavirus threw everything off track.
SPIN THE GLOBE
Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today, we’ve landed in Chicago – in the United States, where scientists think they know why megladons grew as large as they did.
What’s a megladon? It’s only a gigantic shark. Like, 14 metres long – which is about the length of your average bus.
Megladons lived in the world’s oceans about 3 million years ago – pretty much eating everything they came across.
Scientists from a university in Chicago believe one of the reasons megladons grew to be as big as they were is because the baby sharks – which are called pups – ate their brothers and sisters whilst they were all in the mummy megladon’s tummy, meaning by the time they were born, they were already large and ready to start chasing down their first meal.
And to get a proper sense of how big these megladons grew – check out the link in today’s episode notes, to a photo of a megladon’s tooth next to the tooth of a great white shark. And then be thankful they don’t swim our oceans anymore …
What a funny old year it’s been for sport. Just ask Aussie tennis sensation Ash Barty – who yesterday learned she would hang on to the women’s world number one ranking – despite the fact she hasn’t played in the last two big tournaments.
Ash decided not to travel to New York for the US Open last month and isn’t in Paris at the French Open this month because … corona. But thanks to special consideration given to players who couldn’t compete in those two tournaments because of COVID travel restrictions: Barty will finish this year as the world’s top ranked female tennis player – and go into next January’s Australian Open in Melbourne as the top seed – which means the strongest player in the tournament. Not bad considering she hasn’t played a tournament since February.
When you’ve got to go – you’ve got to go. But in outer space, where a lack of gravity means everything is weightless and tends to float about rather than fall down, going to the toilet is a little more complicated than it is down here on earth. Luckily, scientists have come up with a space potty – a clever contraption that ensures astronauts can answer the call of nature in a zero-gravity environment. And later this week, the space potty will be loaded aboard a rocket and sent up to the International Space Station – where a group of up to six astronauts at a time live and work for an average of six months at a time.
But don’t worry: this new space potty is simply a new model – to replace an older design that’s already up there. They haven’t been holding on for six months. Because that would not be comfortable.
This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …
- Starting with ‘b’, what will the Australian government deliver today that is a plan for the country’s finances?
- What’s the name of the gigantic shark that prowled the world’s oceans 3 million years ago?
- Name the Aussie women’s tennis player who will finish the year as she started it: at the top of the world rankings?
It’s October 6 ….. National Mad Hatter’s Day in some parts of the world … where people mark the occasion by dressing up as the Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland. Each to their own.
It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today … A big ol’ happy birthday to these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today … Sofia from Double Bay, Ben from Wamberal, Atrèju from Watsonia, Joshua from Rowville, Matthew from Plenty, Micah from Sutherland, Joshua from Engadine
And we missed a few birthdays over the holidays, and there were quite a few so we’ll space them out over the next couple of days. Today’s bunch of belated birthday shoutouts go to … Phoebe from Buderim, Thomas from Bardwell Park, Jayden from Prestons, Sofia from Caversham, Alex from Lower Mitcham, Eli from NSW, Maya from North Sydney, Anastasia from Glenfield Park, Maddie from Morningside, Joseph from Cannon Hill, Aurora from Brisbane, Zoe from Kew, Eliza and Raffie from Heathmont, Hannah from Richmond, Zoe from Como, and Lizzie from Crow’s Nest.
Happy birthday one and all!
And finally: today’s classroom shout outs go to … 3/4M at Eumundi State School, Class 317 and 318 at Greythorn Primary School, class 3BV at Ferny Grove State Primary School, 6A at Karalee State School with Mrs Gardiner and 3C and Mrs Cutting at St Augustine’s in Currumbin.
The S’Quiz Answers:
- Ash Barty