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Worth a Click: 10 Stories You Should Read Today

By DNAinfo Staff | November 19, 2015 3:52pm 

 Actor Warren Beatty at the Screen Actors Guild Awards on Jan. 23, 2010.
Actor Warren Beatty at the Screen Actors Guild Awards on Jan. 23, 2010.
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Getty Images / Kevin Winter

The Internet Had a Lot of Fun Laughing at Ben Carson’s Wonky U.S. Map

Presidential hopeful Ben Carson took to social media earlier this week to declare his opposition to the United States taking in Syrian refugees, using a map of the country to illustrate which states have governors who feel the same. The only problem? A portion of his map — specifically, the country’s northeastern states — was more than a little geographically-challenged.

Ironically, Carson's design gaffe came during “Geography Awareness Week.” [Washington Post]

There’s a Black Market for Walmart’s Sweet Potato Pies

Until last week, the Patti LaBelle sweet potato pie was just a seasonal dessert, available at Walmart for $3.48. But it became one of the most sought after food items overnight, thanks to an enthusiastic review by YouTube user James Wright, who sings his praises using some profanity. The video went viral and as of Thursday morning got more than 2,300,000 views. The pies, which have sold out in many Wal-Mart stores, are now going for up to $50 on eBay. [NPR]

Sports At Any Cost

The Huffington Post and The Chronicle of Higher Education investigation delve into the growing problem of colleges that up student fees to support a school’s athletics program. At a time when many students are drowning in higher education debt, some colleges are adding to the burden, charging students upwards of $1,000 to fund school sports that many don’t participate in. [Huffington Post]

Pigeons Can Diagnose Cancer and They May Take Our Jobs

Pigeons are much smarter than we give them credit for: they can count items in groups of three, pick which paintings are by the same artist and recognize themselves in a mirror. And now researchers at UC Davis have found they can train pigeons to distinguish between images of benign and malignant tumors.

“Pigeons can be used as suitable surrogates for human observers in certain medical image perception studies, thus avoiding the need to recruit, pay, and retain clinicians as subjects for relatively mundane tasks,” the researchers explain. [City Lab]

People Should Stop Scaring Their Cats with Cucumbers (Even if It's Hilarious)

While it may be entertaining to watch people surprise their cats with a cucumber, experts say owners shouldn’t try the viral video trend at home.

Surprised kitties leap into the air because the unexpected vegetables trigger their "natural startle responses,” which is designed to get them out of the area quickly so they can assess the situation from a safe distance. The pranks, while fun for owners, could lead injury or stress cats, particularly those who encounter the cucumber near a feeding station which "they often associate those areas with safety and security." [National Geographic]

Men Eat More When They’re On Dates, Study Says

Researchers observed 150 diners at an all-you-can-eat buffet for two weeks and found that men who had dinner with females ate 93 percent more pizza and 86 percent more salad. The findings suggest that men tend to show off by eating more, they said. [Daily Mail]

Coffee Helps You Live Longer, Study Says

As if you needed another reason to love coffee… Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health say people who drink three to five cups of coffee per day had 15% percent less risk of premature death, compared to those who didn’t drink coffee. The study looked at 167,000 women and 40,000 men in the healthcare industry. [NPR]

“You’re So Vain” Is About Warren Beatty

One of pop music’s great mysteries has (sort of) been solved. Singer Carly Simon recently came out and said that the second verse of her hit song “You’re So Vain” is about actor Warren Beatty. Although Simon has previously said that the whole song is actually about several different men, she also said that Beatty still thinks the entire tune is about him. Fitting. [Slate]

The Story of One Bed-Stuy Block

New York Magazine went deep with this multimedia profile of one Bedford-Stuyvesant block, including a history of the block, interviews with residents and a look at nearly every house on the street. This close read shows how minute changes become massive over time. [NY Magazine]

There is Objectively Nothing Cuter Than This Dog and Elephant Who Are Best Friends

For Throwback Thursday, here is a CBS Evening News story from 2009 about an elephant (Tara) and a dog (Bella) who are best friends. Bella letting Tara pet her belly with her gigantic foot is both stressful and touching, but when Bella is laid up in a house with a spinal cord injury, the shot of Tara frantically trying to push her giant head through a fence to get closer to her wounded bestie — peak heartwarming. Also priceless: The narrator’s final remarks. “Take a good look, America. Take a good look, world. If they can do it, what’s our excuse?” Indeed. [CBS]

This column was compiled by DNAinfo reporters Lisha Arino, Jeanmarie Evelly, Emily Frost, Noah Hurowitz, Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska, Carolina Pichardo, Irene Plagianos, Eddie Small, Danielle Tcholakian and Shaye Weaver.