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Southern states join to promote civil rights tourism

The F.W. Woolworth's lunch counter is seen in 2016 at the International Civil Rights Center & Museum in Greensboro, N.C. The site is part of the new U.S. Civil Rights Trail. (Skip Foreman / AP)
Fourteen states stretching from Kansas to Delaware, including all of the Deep South, are joining to promote the U.S. Civil Rights Trail, which will highlight about 130 sites linked to the modern civil rights movement. The joint effort was unveiled as part of the MLK holiday weekend.

The Slice: Hair yesterday: What were we thinking?

Baby boomers have a dirty little secret. Despite all sorts of evidence to contrary, we like to think of ourselves as hip and happening and also seasoned and wise. But there is one subject that makes us theatrically clear our throats and lurch to change the subject.

Got unused vacation days? Plan for Vacation Day is Jan. 30

A blue heron walks along the beach at sunset in Orange Beach, Alabama. The travel industry hopes Americans will use Jan. 30 to schedule their vacations for the year and take advantage of any paid time off they are entitled to from their jobs. (Brynn Anderson / File/Associated Press)
NEW YORK – Stop making excuses. Start making plans. That’s the message behind the second annual National Plan for Vacation Day. It’s an effort by the travel industry to persuade Americans to use Jan. 30 as a day to schedule their vacations for the year and take advantage of any paid time off they are entitled to from their jobs.

The Slice: Some selections are not currently on the menu

Readers’ recollections of having breakfast at their grandparents’ homes reminded Jeff Neuberger of a treasured family story. “When our daughter was learning to talk she would mispronounce words, like most kids. For a while we thought she’d need a speech therapist. My parents thought she needed counseling after a short discussion at breakfast one morning.”

Ask Dr. Universe: How are different types of glass made?

We can make glass in factories and we can find it in nature. Some volcanoes make glass. When they spew out lava, it often cools into obsidian, a black glass. Glass can also form on sandy beaches. Small tubes with smooth glass on the inside may appear after super-hot lightning strikes the sand.

Schoolyard conflicts may be linked to serious health problems later in life, research shows

A new study by the University of Virginia has found a correlation between childhood conflict, and the poor handling of it, to later health problems. (Chris Ware / Tribune News Service)
The study found that a protein in the bloodstream that has been associated with development of cancerous tumors, osteoporosis, arthritis and other problems associated with aging, was present at high levels in the bloodstreams of 28-year-olds who experienced chronic social conflict beginning as early as age 13, but not among those who handled conflict well.

The Slice: Breakfast cereal and gender identity

The Slice asked about favorite childhood breakfast cereals. Dave Payne recalled growing up in Montana with three Cheerios-eating sisters. He couldn’t stand them. (Cheerios that is, not his sisters.) “They were girly food.”

Ask the builder: Who’s to blame for major construction mistakes?

A mistake in roof height was caught very late in the job. Now it’s a nightmare. (Tim Carter/Tribune Content Agency)
My builder really goofed up my new home. A room at the corner of the house next to the front door had its roof installed too low. The mistake is being corrected, but I’m quite upset as I don’t feel the job is being done right. They’re leaving the old roof in place and putting the new framing on top of the old! Everyone is pointing fingers at who’s responsible.

Discovering the magic of Edinburgh

Just a cannonball’s throw away, the city of Edinburgh, Scotland, stretches toward the Firth of Forth, a blue streak in the distance. (Tom Shroder / For The Washington Post)
The doors of the Airlink 100 bus from Edinburgh airport hissed open at what we thought was the stop nearest to our hotel. The desk clerk I’d emailed said the stop was directly in front of the hotel, which was supposed to be close to the city center. As the bus pulled away, we did not appear to be either opposite the hotel or near the center of anything, except a row of low-rise brown stone structures and a four-lane road. Wrong stop.