Five Lessons Learnt This Week

Five Lessons Learnt is our weekly round-up of all the crazy, strange and funny news of the week. Perfect for a bit of Friday afternoon entertainment and a light-hearted look at what’s been going on away from the charts!

This week in Five Lessons Learnt – the fourteen things you should be doing before breakfast, how two teenagers changed the face of maths and why Tesco are recruiting a Christmas tree light untangler…

1. What you should be doing before breakfast

coco-popsIf you barely manage to find time to eat your Weetabix before sitting down to the charts – you’re doing it wrong. If you want to be successful, you should be doing a whopping 14 things before breakfast. Research from the World Economic Forum revealed that in order to be successful, you should be waking up by 6am on a weekday so you’ll have time to:

Drink water. Exercise. Work on a top-priority business project. Work on a personal-passion project. Spend time with your family. Connect with your partner. Make your bed. Network over coffee. Meditate to clear your mind. Write down things you’re grateful for. Plan the day ahead. Check email. Read the news.

And all before sitting down to their Rice Krispies. What time do these people get round to eating breakfast, is what we want to know – 4pm? 5pm? Never?

2. How two teenagers brought us one step closer to interstellar travel

What had you achieved by the time you were 17? Most of us might have clocked up a handful of qualifications and a driving theory test certificate, if we were lucky. But not maths geniuses Xuming Liang and Ivan Zelich – despite not even having graduated from high school yet, the teenagers have changed the face of mathematics forever and changed the way we view the structure of the universe.

Liang and Zelich corresponded over the internet to collaborate on a mathematical theorem involving finding “wormholes” in space. Because they live in contrasting time zones (Liang lives in San Diego, while Zelich is from Australia) they worked in “shifts” – while one slept, the other was working.

A paper on their theorem has been published in the International Journal of Geometry, making them the youngest ever contributors. Not bad for two guys still in their teens…

3. Pets need TV licenses too

Fire-SalamanderWell, not really. So don’t worry if you have a dog that’s partial to his weekly Eastenders fix. However, one German salamander did receive a bill for his TV licence this week. Fire salamander Hans Werner is the pet of painter Wener Kojat, who lives alone and has refused to pay his licence fee for years as he does not own a television, despite German law stating that every household must pay the fee whether they own a television or not.

Wener said he’s been fighting the charges for years – and finally, the authorities gave up on sending him letters and instead issued one to Herr Hans Werner Fire Salamander. Wener slammed the bill as “absurd”, but it turned out to be down to a simple mistake. Wener lives in two apartments joined together with separate numbers, and as a joke when questioned, told authorities his salamander lived in the second apartment.

But the joke didn’t go down too well with the authorities, and Mr Fire Salamander was recorded as the official owner of the second apartment. The TV authorities have since agreed to close the amphibian’s account, though Mr Kojat’s ongoing battle probably isn’t over yet.

4. Why not to brag on Facebook

We all have those Facebook friends who are partial to a bit of showing off. Whether it’s their children’s numerous wonderful achievements, their shiny new car or a particularly photo-worthy meal they’re about to eat, nothing is above becoming the subject of a Facebook brag.

But here’s a warning to us all. Chantelle from Perth, Australia was thrilled when she placed a $20 bet on the Melbourne cup and won a whopping $900. She posted a triumphant selfie with her winning ticket before heading off to collect her cash – only for one of her Facebook “friends” to use the information on the ticket to steal her winnings.

The police have apparently tracked the person who collected the winnings and Chantelle is hopeful of getting her winnings back – but the moral of this story is, if you wouldn’t tell a stranger, don’t tell Facebook.

5. Who Tesco are recruiting

lightsTesco are advertising for probably their most unusual job – Christmas Tree Light Untangler. They’re going to be hiring someone to take on probably the world’s most frustrating job in the four weeks leading up to Christmas – and requirements are an ability to untangle a set of Christmas tree lights in three minutes or less, a passion for Christmas and good people skills.

The idea is to provide a service where people can bring in their tangled up lights for Tesco’s designated Light Untangler to tackle one of the worst things about Christmas in an effort to reduce festive season stress. So if you’re already dreading digging out the Christmas decorations, fear not!

Could this be the end to all Christmas-tree related arguments?!

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