Monday, April 22, 2013

TEN (excellent) Practice Scrambled Paragraphs

As a young man, and partly a god, Gilgamesh has no compassion for the people of Uruk.

______ (Q) The plan works in several ways.

______ (R) Hearing the people's lament, the gods create Enkidu as a match for Gilgamesh, a second self: "Let them contend together and leave Uruk in quiet."

______ (S) First, Enkidu prevents Gilgamesh from entering the house of a bride and bridegroom; they fight and then they embrace as friends.

______ (T) He was their king but not their shepherd; he kills their sons and attacks their daughters.

______ (U) Second, Enkidu and Gilgamesh undertake a journey into the forest to confront the terrible Humbaba, and there they encourage each other to face death triumphantly.


Kamikaze, which means "Divine Wind" in Japanese, was Japan's last attempt to balance the ever increasing technological and material advantage of the American forces advancing to Japan.

______ (Q) Such weapons already existed and were operational for over a year then, but not in Japan

______ (R) The Kamikaze attack tactic was suggested on October 19, 1944, by vice-Admiral Onishi of the Japanese Navy, when he was assigned to command the air attacks against the huge American invasion fleet off the Philippines, and then realized that he had less than 100 operational aircraft for this task.

______ (S) The German Air Force was using large radio-guided bombs against ships but Japan had no such weapon, and therefore Onishi suggested that volunteer pilots could guide their bomb-carrying aircraft all the way to a suicide collision with an American ship.

______ (T) The solution was obvious: guided weapons provide dramatically greater accuracy and lethality than unguided weapons, producing much greater damage per weapon unit and per sortie.

______ (U) There was no way to sink or even severely damage the American fleet in any conventional tactic, so the Admiral needed a force multiplier, a way to get a significantly greater striking power from a given force.

Penicillin was originally noticed by a French medical student, Ernest Duchesne, in 1896.

______ (Q) Fleming observed that a plate of Staphylococcus had been contaminated by a blue-green mold and that colonies of bacteria adjacent to the mold were being dissolved.

______ (R) Curious, Alexander Fleming grew the mold in a pure culture and found that it produced a substance that killed a number of disease-causing bacteria.

______ (S) Penicillin was re-discovered by bacteriologist Alexander Fleming working at St. Mary's Hospital in London in 1928

______ (T) Later, Dorothy Hodgkin's discovery of the molecular layout of penicillin helped lead scientists to develop large quantities of penicillin as well as other antibiotics.

______ (U) Naming the substance penicillin, Dr. Fleming in 1929 published the results of his investigations, noting that his discovery might have therapeutic value if it could be produced in quantity.

Until the 1950s, most people thought of sleep as a passive, dormant part of our daily lives, but we now know that our brains are very active during sleep.

______ (Q) Nerve-signaling chemicals called neurotransmitters control whether we are asleep or awake by acting on different groups of nerve cells, or neurons, in the brain.

______ (R) Research also suggests that a chemical called adenosine builds up in our blood while we are awake and causes drowsiness and this chemical gradually breaks down while we sleep.

______ (S) Neurons in the brainstem, which connects the brain with the spinal cord, produce neurotransmitters such as serotonin and norepinephrine that keep some parts of the brain active while we are awake.

______ (T) Other neurons at the base of the brain begin signaling when we fall asleep.

______ (U) These neurons appear to "switch off" the signals that keep us awake.

The Battle of Stalingrad is considered by many historians to have been the turning point in World War Two in Europe.

______ (Q) Some historians, in fact, believe that Hitler ordered the taking of Stalingrad simply because of the name of the city  and Hitler's hatred of Joseph Stalin.

______ (R) The battle at Stalingrad bled the German Sixth Army dry in Russia and after this defeat, the entire Germany Army was in full retreat.

______ (S) One of the ironies of the war, however, is that the German Sixth Army need not have gotten entangled in Stanlingrad.

______ (T) For the same reason Stalin ordered that the city had to be saved.

______ (U) Sixth Army Groups A and B were well on their way to the Caucasus in south-west Russia, when Hitler ordered an attack on Stalingrad.

It is believed that rice cultivation began simultaneously in many countries over 6500 years ago.

______ (Q) The first crops were observed in China (Hemu Du region) around 5000 B.C. as well as in Thailand around 4500 B.C.

______ (R) Indica is an irrigated rice of warm tropical zones, with long, thin and flat grains.

______ (S) They later appeared in Cambodia, Vietnam and southern India.

______ (T) Japonica is an irrigated rice of temperate zone, with medium or short grains, also called round grain, and is a rainfed lowland rice of warm tropical zones.

______ (U) From there, derived species Japonica and Indica expanded to other Asian countries, such as Korea, Japan, Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Philippines and Indonesia.

Bottom trawling is a practice where fishermen literally drag nets across an ocean floor, killing virtually everything in their pursuit of one type of fish.

______ (Q) “Ten years ago, Elliott Norse and I calculated that, each year, worldwide, bottom trawlers drag an area equivalent to twice the lower 48 states.”

______ (R) Regardless of this measure, now satellite images show that spreading clouds of mud remain suspended in the sea long after the trawler has passed.

______ (S) As a result of scientific studies showing that bottom trawling kills vast numbers of corals, sponges, fishes and other animals, bottom trawling has been banned in a growing number of places in recent years.

______ (T) “Bottom trawling is the most destructive of any actions that humans conduct in the ocean,” said Dr. Watling.

______ (U) But what satellites can see is only the “tip of the iceberg,” because most trawling happens in waters too deep to detect sediment plumes at the surface, say scientists speaking a symposium called Bottom Trawling, the World's Most Severe and Extensive Seafloor Disturbance.

Many predators search for their prey with their eyes.

______ (Q) For example, many prey species blend in with their environment, making it difficult for the predators to find them.

______ (R) As a result, many prey species have evolved special body coloration to reduce their chance of being eaten.

______ (S) Cryptic coloration is especially common in small animals such as insects, lizards, snakes, and frogs.

______ (T) These animals are often the same color as the leaves or twigs on which they rest and some insects even look like the twigs or leaves themselves.

______ (U) These species use camouflage or “crypsis” or “cryptic coloration” as their first line of defense.


Zhuangzi was a Taoist philosopher who had a perplexing experience.

______ (Q) Sure he was a butterfly he felt a joyful feeling as he fluttered about - he completely forgot that he was Zhuangzi.

______ (R) He, himself, became confused: was Zhuangzi the butterfly, or the butterfly Zhungzi, and, he thought,  “This is what is meant by the ‘transformation of things.’"

______ (S) One day about sunset, Zhuangzi dozed off and dreamed that he turned into a butterfly.

______ (T) To be sure, he flapped his wings and sure enough he was a butterfly.

______ (U) Soon though, he woke and realized that the butterfly was really Zhuangzi who dreamed he was a butterfly, or was it a butterfly who dreamed he was Zhuangzi!

A “potlatch” is a ceremony of North American Indians of the northwest coast from Washington to Alaska.

______ (Q) Although a potlatch usually included feasting, singing, and dancing, its distinctive feature was the host's lavish distribution of gifts to invited guests or his destruction of goods in their presence.

______ (R) The more goods he could afford to lose, the more prestige he gained for himself and his relatives.

______ (S) The word comes from patshatl: “giving” or “gift.”

______ (T) In fact, losing these goods in the potlatch was the only way to maintain or improve one's social status; to regain lost status; to validate the right to an inherited position; or to avenge an insult.

______ (U) The guests usually reciprocated by giving their own potlatches at a later time.


gilgamesh: 32415
kamikazee: 41532
penicillin: 23154
sleep: 15234
stalingrad: 41253
rice: 15243
trawling: 52143
crypsis: 21453
Zhuangzi: 35124
potlatch: 23145