photos for week in review

• Thanks to NASA’s advanced infrared space telescopes, we are able to view the birth of stars as never before. Check out these eight images of protostars as they emerge from the celestial dust.

 

• Some food concepts weren't meant to succeed. Matt Hickman takes a horrified look at eight famous food flops that we wish had never seen the light of day.

 

• Humans have been seeking mind-altering substances for most of history, but we wondered about animals. We've rounded up a tongue-in-cheek list of "drunkard" animals, the creatures that eat fermented fruit or drinks. 

 

• The death of Trayvon Martin has been fodder for both sides of the political spectrum lately, but urban design blogger Chris Turner is asking a different question: Is the design of our communities — and this gated community in particular — partially to blame for this tragedy?

 

sugar-coated lips• After you've put some in your coffee, do you think much about sugar? Our writer did and she came up with 24 clever uses for sugar around the house, including softening your lips.

 

• After releasing two bizarre videos in which a little girl seems to kill a rabbit and a goldfish, former presidential wannabe Herman Cain says he's just being "provocative." (Oh, and the animals are fine.)

 

• John Platt writes about the murky world of horse racing? He points to a thorough New York Times investigation that revealed performance-enhancing drugs, massive injuries to horses and jockeys and a culture that appears to function outside the realm of reality — and the law.

 

• If you're getting a tax refund this year — and we hope you are — personal finance blogger Melissa Hincha-Ownby rattles off 10 smart ways you can put that refund to work. 

 

• And finally, auto blogger Jim Motavalli hums a few bars of a famous Joni Mitchell tune and declares it's time to reinvent the parking lot. After reading this, we think you might agree.

 

Plus: Find out the full story behind the curious, newly orphaned parakeets, below.

parakeets