Wacky Web Week

The good, the bad, and the sheepishly busted

It’s summer in North America, and we’re approaching state-fair season: fruit pies, fried cheese, livestock, rides, and excitement, especially for kids. What better way to prepare children for life in the country than by teaching them to ride? How about beginning on galloping sheep? This video records an Iowa State Fair event called Mutton Busting for the five-and-under set: six seconds or less of rodeo glory for each young contestant. Say what you will about sheep mentality: they’re all brisk about unloading their riders.

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Raccoons and other animals: Mutually wary

Whether raccoons are entirely wild intruders or have been invited in to eat grapes at the dining room table, their presence can — and usually does — provoke a certain anxiety in their hosts. As you see in this collection of videotaped encounters, they’re dangerously cute.

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Celebrating holiday with old and new technology

The spectacular July 4 fireworks display you’re about to see was photographed by videographer Jos Stiglingh a year ago in Florida. He flew a DJI Phantom 2 quadcopter deep into the fireworks show and recorded it with an attached GoPro Hero 3 videocam. The performance — or rather, the entire collection of performances — was high-risk for a flying camera passing inside all that explosive technology. We’re in considerably less danger watching this video version of the show.

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Sun-drunken solstice revelers parade in Seattle

Many people think they correctly understand Seattle as a city of industrious, tech-startup people or hard-working indie rock musicians living in a surfeit of glorious coastal and mountain scenery muted by damp weather. If you think that sums up the Seattle vibe, you haven’t seen the Summer Solstice Parade.

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Great, expensive fun: Falling-down robots

In this video compilation from Day 1 of the DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals, scientists learned important matters from their exercises. But these flailing robots are also fun to watch.

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Versatile Finnish cover band also plays hockey

When the members of the band Steve ‘n’ Seagulls cover a song and make a video, they don’t leave many of their ideas unexpressed.

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Sporting pig and friend catch some waves

Kama the pig lives on Oahu, which might help explain his transcendent calm while standing on a slippery surfboard as the Pacific Ocean swells toward shore.

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Elephant fixes her water-pressure problem

In the midst of bathing, Faa Sai, the elephant, decided to adjust her personal sprinkler. Her plumbing techniques might not work for everyone, but they were certainly effective for her.

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Do you want an app for the time of day?

Conan O’Brien and Andy Richter had some fun recently at Apple’s expense, as they quizzed Siri about the time of day via Andy’s new Apple Watch. As everybody knows, Apple doesn’t make mistakes. So you can watch this video for the wry pleasure of two comedians’ take on technology — and on our sometimes misplaced expectations. How many times have you said: “Gee, I must be doing something wrong.” Click below or go to the original YouTube video. Post your thoughts about this story in the WS Columns forum.