From a raging explosion at a fireworks warehouse to sharks tumbling to the floor of a shopping mall, we've seen some great videos this week. Here are some of our favourites:
1. Letters to Santa Claus reveal desperate need
Every winter, U.S. Post Office workers read thousands of letters addressed to "Santa Claus, North Pole, Alaska." They select messages expressing particularly strong need and connect them with groups and individuals ready to create Christmas miracles. The post office's "Letters to Santa" program has been running the operation for the past 100 years and this year, they've seen some heart-wrenching requests on kids' Christmas lists. One 13-year-old asked for nothing but bed covers to stay warm. Another 12-year-old just asked Santa to bring a gift for his single mother to reward her for the hard work. We are glad that more than one Santa is ready to answer such pleas.
2. Clever mouse trades coins for food
This mouse has mastered some key basics about the economy — specifically about bartering. The little guy eagerly trades a few coins for a treat and it looks like it's getting a good deal. Too bad the mouse can't be trained to go grocery shopping instead of its owner, like this Japanese pet penguin, Lala.
3. Sharks burst out of mall aquarium
An explosion, a cascade of water and three lemon sharks rushing at you — it sounds like an action film sequence. But shoppers in China experienced this in real life when an aquarium at a shopping mall shattered this week.
[ Related: Aquarium containing sharks, turtles explodes ]
Elsewhere, a group of shark observers has also learned to avoid these predators. In this underwater video, a shark greeted a group of divers with a very unpleasant surprise.
4. Fireworks explosion sparks major fire
Fireworks lighting up night skies make many smile and cheer. But there was nothing cheerful about this fireworks action in Laos, where a powerful explosion at a fireworks warehouse destroyed several buildings, creating a lethal path of destruction. This fire comes mere weeks after a deadly blaze in Bangladesh killed more than 100 people, raising concerns about workplace fire safety.
5. Nova Scotia's breastfeeding backlash
Breastfeeding has been making headlines throughout the year. Remember Time magazine's mom, photographed breastfeeding her three-year-old boy last May? The act of breastfeeding has been questioned again this winter, when food inspectors came to investigate food safety following complaints about a restaurant owner breastfeeding her eight-month-old boy while at work.
[ Related: N.S. apologizes to breastfeeding working mom ]
The Nova Scotia department responsible for food safety has since apologized, concluding that "Babies in restaurants, in and of themselves, don't represent a food safety risk." Looks like some of the more squeamish customers forgot that they were fed in a similar fashion once, too. And if an Italian MP can bring her baby to parliament, why shouldn't other working mothers bring babies to work?
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