the wonders of nature

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All comments are from Instructables’ ‘4-Leaf Clovers: A Finders Guide‘. Click for a larger image.


‘P.S. I AM 11′.







shamrock 4Thank you, Captain Killjoy.



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The Iowa State Fair isn’t just art and fried food, it’s a grand showcase of Iowa’s produce and livestock, all manner of which are at the fair for judging and educational purposes.

This walk-through building had cows of every breed on display, along with signs highlighting the breed’s qualities and specialties.

For the most part the cows seemed pretty content, if bored with the hundreds of people walking through. Even with numerous kids running up and trying to pat them, they remained placid, though this one gave me the eye.

A large crowd pushed and gathered around the next barn, so of course I joined in and shoved through to see what all the fuss was about. Turns out the year’s biggest bull was on display.

That is indeed a lot of bull. Numerous signs warned ‘DO NOT PET BULL!’ When you’re staring at something the size of a boxcar I figured this would be pretty damn obvious, but then I tend to underestimate the stupidity of large crowds.

On the other end of the size spectrum…

MINI PONIES! MINI PONIES MINI PONIES MINI PONIES!!!! I first learned of these adorable creatures when a friend published an equally tiny mini-zine dedicated to how awesome they are. Did you know there’s a program training them for use as seeing-eye horses? It’s called Helping Hooves!

Here we see the wee hand of a toddler reaching out to pet the tiny, tiny pony.

Over by the sheep barn a sheep and his owner took full measure of each other:

If you always wondered what a bag of prizewinning raw wool looked like, wonder no more.

Many sheep wore eye-popping coats, presumably to keep them cozy without their wool…

…although in some cases they looked like Klanssheep.


…more lambs.

Just outside the Horse barn.

The Fair organizers finally catered to public whim and built a new area for all the cute stuff to be in one place. The Baby Barn!


Chicks just hatching!

This was simultaneously the cutest and grosses thing ever. A lady goat JUST gave birth to bitty baby goat twins, one of whom tottered around bleating, seeking food, and basically being adorable. The mom, however, was far too engrossed chawing her placenta to pay much attention.

They had some exotic babies, including baby ostriches. Next to their holding pen a large egg incubator sat, each enormous egg within bearing the presumed birth date in black magic marker.

Piglets! A sign nearby explained we were witnessing cutting edge farm technology- newly designed sow cages allow piglets to suckle all they want without worry the sow will roll over and crush them…or eat them. Farms. Teaching us the cruel realities of life and death.

Speaking of which, here’s some stuff made from animals you’ll wish you didn’t know was made from animals!

This child is covered in death.

Animals are in everything.


Another use for leftover ostrich bones: “Dog Chews”.

Live bees in clear cases were being judged on qualities such as cleanliness of comb. Can you train bees for that?

This is my favorite photo out of the entire fair.

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