Thursday, July 31, 2008

Ten Notable Staircases

Staircases can be so much more than just a means of getting to the next floor. A staircase can be a work of art, a conversation piece, a place to meditate, or a historical marker. See ten weird, clever, and historic staircases today at mental_floss.

digg story

Fun Links

13 Scenes From Comic Con 2008. The costumes are great, but can they take a restroom break?

Testing the theory that any verb/noun combination can be a euphemism for masturbation, here's a generator that links them randomly for you. Now excuse me, I have to go paste the butter.

20 Examples of Incredible Light Phenomena. My question is: how did anyone shoot such beautiful photographs of them?

Ten Dead People Who Weren't Really Dead. And these were the ones who got caught faking it -there are probably many more out there.

What can be cuter than two children frolicking in the backyard with a lawn sprinkler? Mama keeps a close eye on them, of course.

Things a bridesmaid might need before the wedding: dress, shoes, haircut, manicure, Botox, dental work, breast enhancement... what? It happens more often than you may think.

What it's like to be a losing contestant on Jeopardy. Includes an explanation of why the buzzer doesn't always work.

Barkley the Cat by Marc Israel.

How To Not Be A Douchebag Tourist In NYC.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Barbarian and the Geisha

From Wikipedia:

The Barbarian and the Geisha is a 1958 film directed by John Huston and starring John Wayne.

Townsend Harris (Wayne) is sent by President Pierce to Japan to serve as the first U.S. Consul-General to that country. Harris discovers enormous hostility to foreigners, as well as the love of a young geisha.

Based on the true story of American diplomat Townsend Harris, his time in Japan in the 1850s and 60s, and his romance with a 17-year-old geisha named Okichi. Their story is one of the most well-known folk tales in Japan. The real Harris died in New York in 1878, and the real Okichi committed suicide in Shimoda in 1892.

Informative Links

For every internet success story, there are many more failures. Most just disappeared quietly, but these 25 had rather public flameouts.

5 Extreme Sky Dives From the Last 50 Years. Hold your stomach, as some daring divers choose to push their free-falls to record-setting extremes.

The mantis shrimp has the world's fastest punch. Four inches long, and he can break out of an aquarium made of quarter-inch glass!

A gallery of NASA spacesuits from Mercury to the future. Comfort and fashion take a backseat to keeping an astronaut alive in space.

Six Vacation Photos That Can Kill You. They've each killed at least one person already.

What should smokers be scared of? Lung cancer is only of the beginning of the dangers.

A spider nabs a bee. How we hear this exciting story is very different depending on whether it comes from National geographic or the BBC.

Which book are you most embarrassed to admit you have never read? You may be in good company, as famous authors answer the question.

The waiter behind Waiter Rant is unmasked as his book is published.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

More than Just a Toaster

In a world where computers, music players, game systems, and automobiles come and go, we manage to become attached to our toasters. This simple appliance makes our bread warm enough to melt butter and crisp enough to hold honey or jam. An oven or even a stovetop will do the same thing, but you’ll rarely find a kitchen that doesn’t have a toaster.

So of course, toasters hold a special place in our hearts.

Welcome Home, Mama!

Posting here has been pretty thin in the last week. I was out of town. I found this video in my inbox when I returned home (yes, I brought them t-shirts). But I'm starting to get back into the swing of things, and normal posting should resume tomorrow. Thanks for your patience!

The Bronski Follies of 1939

Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft from the 1983 movie To Be or Not To Be. (via Frontier Former Editor)

Monday, July 28, 2008

The Wild Women of Wongo

From Wikipedia:

Wild Women of Wongo
is a 1958 film about a village of beautiful women who meet a village of beautiful men on the other side of a tropical island one fateful day. The movie was released by itself on DVD September 28, 2004.

Gymnastics Bloopers


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Oh Happy Day

From Sister Act 2. I couldn't find a clip of the Edwin Hawkins Singers that was any count.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Albert Einstein

"Now I will add a few words unprepared. [laughter] A country becomes really a soul only in consciously serving the intellectual life, and in the case of our Jewish people it was really this endeavour, which conserved the Jewish people as a whole. We would not be in existence today, as a community of people, without this continued, or discontinued ... ehh ... activity into learning and in thought and in literature."
The occasion is unknown.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Good Reads

After a ScienceBlogger posted that Volcanoes are Evil, he was challenged to write good things about them. He responded with an expanded list of volcanic evils.

July 31 and August 1, Profiles in History will be auctioning off a ton of Hollywood props, costumes, one-sheets, and more. Items come from Star Wars, Blade Runner, Austin Powers, and Back to the Future, just for starters.

Shipping your luggage is now cheaper than taking it with you on an airline. Eventually, it will be cheaper to buy everything at your destination, then discard it.

Facebook is trying to bring some order to the chaos with a new design. It should make the site more like what it's supposed to be. (via Geek Like Me)

The rise and fall of an American beer. How Budweiser gobbled up the competition, up until they were gobbled up by InBev.

If you could guess what plant scientists are using to try for a cancer vaccine, you'd probably guess anything but ...tobacco.

Olympic torches through the years. Each Olympiad has its own torch, with its own story. (via Dark Roasted Blend)

Three-headed Frog

Have you ever heard of such a thing?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

6 Unsolved Disappearances

People vanish all the time, and we usually find out what happened to them eventually. Usually, not always. Jimmy Hoffa and Amelia Earhart are the most famous unsolved missing persons cases in the modern era. But there are many others who left us with far more questions than answers. Here are six you may not be familiar with.

read more | digg story

Fun Links

Godzilla makes Sierpinski cookies. Nom nom nom.

Penn and Teller explain a magic trick. I think they left a step out.

Boy, that's a big snake. Did you get a look at his face?

Sitting in a restaurant minding your own business can be hazardous. Be sure to look and see if there are any cars coming.

If fonts were people, what would they be like? They'd be pretty funny!

Have you ever wondered how Lego bricks are made? Gizmodo takes a tour of the factory in three videos.

Cakes Wrecks. An entire blog dedicated to those occasions when professional cake decorating goes horribly wrong. (via Cynical-C)

A guy uses firecrackers to play a practical joke on his wife. She'll never touch a gun again.

The Circus Festival of Monte Carlo

Performance on the Russian Barre. The last stunt is unbelievable! (via Cynical-C)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Informative Links

Bats are dying by the millions. Here's what you can do to help protect their place in the balance of nature.

Escaping the Amish, part one and part two. One woman's experience might not be typical, but it is fascinating.

Adolph Hitler's American relatives vowed never to marry or have children. They know the pain that comes with the name, even when it's hidden.

America's 10 Most Walkable Cities. Next I'd like to see how many people really take advantage of it.

Get a preview of the Olympic Opening Ceremonies with these pictures taken at rehearsal.">Magazine Sales. The sob story they give you at the door is nothing compared to what really goes on!

Fish can communicate with sound. A researcher named Bass finds that our aquatic ancestors passed this skill to land animals, including humans.

Where Does He Get Those Wonderful Toys? A look at The Dark Knight's real-world gadgets.

Take a look at how our world compares to other heavenly bodies. Makes you feel kind of small, doesn't it?

Corporate Cannibal

From Grace Jones' forthcoming album. (via Metafilter)

Monday, July 21, 2008

Blog Whining

My main site is a Miss Cellania, a site currently hosted by Squarespace. They rolled out a new version of their hosting service this morning, and I can't use it. If I type more than one sentence in a post, I can't reach the "save" button. I also cannot paste link in; I have to hand-code them. I also hand-code links here at Blogger, but since it's simple to switch to html and rich text and back again, it's easier. Still, editing a blog should not be this difficult. I have a brand new Mac Mini, the latest browser (FireFox 3), and the newest OS (Leopard).

Anyway, if you came over here to find out why there isn't much new at Miss Cellania, that's why. This all happened right before I went on a road trip, so I didn't have the time to reconfigure everything. I had a few posts ready ahead of the Squarespace launch, but not enough to last til I return. Please check back both here and there for new content beginning on July 28th. Thank you.

Meanwhile, what's your opinion on Wordpress blogs? Would that be a better platform than Blogger? I need a backup in case I have to leave Squarespace, which would be a shame since I've already paid up for a year!

Good Reads

A comprehensive guide to snakes, part one and part two. This stuff is good to know, but I hope you'll never need to use it.

Gangsters: They Don’t Make ‘Em Like They Used To. Some odd facts about the most famous mobsters of the Prohibition era.

A brutally honest account of what it's like to weigh 530 pounds, plus an update a year after weight loss surgery. You can also read about the surgery itself.

A respirocyte is an artificial red blood cell with approximately 200 times the efficiency. This could turn humans into superhumans, but it's not reality yet.">Artificial islands have been built with existing reefs, sand and blasted rock, stainless steel, and even trash. Read the stories behind 45 of the most interesting.

Nitrogen triiodide is extremely volatile. Who knew you could do so much damage with a feather?

Ten Great Moments in Internet History. If it weren't for the Cold War, I might not be typing this now.

Human-Cat Psychology: Do Cats Improve Our Mood and Become Attached to Us?

The Deep Impact spacecraft captured footage of the Earth and moon together, from a distance of 50 million kilometers. That's what you call skillful camera work.

The Only Guide to Happiness You’ll Ever Need. That may be hyperbole, but there are great ideas here.

Friday, July 18, 2008

The Terror

1963. Directed by Roger Korman, starring Jack Nicholson and Boris Karloff. From IMDB:
France, 18th century. Lieutenant Andre Duvalier has been accidentally separated from his regiment. He is wandering near the coast when he sees a young woman. He asks the road to Coldon, where he hopes to rejoin his regiment. But the woman doesn't answer, doesn't even greet him and walks away. Eventually she takes him to the sea, where she disappears in rough water. Andre loses conscience when he is trying to following her, and is attacked by a bird. He awakes in a house with an old woman and a numb man. She claims to never have seen the woman. After he leaves, he sees her again and when trying to follow her is saved by a man from certain death. He learns that to help the girl, he must go to castle of Baron Van Leppe. When he arrives, Andre sees the woman looking from a window. Baron Van Leppe is old and seems reluctant to let André in however. He claims there's no woman in the castle, but shows André a painting which does indeed portray her. Andre learns that she is the baroness, who died twenty years ago.

Friday Fun Links

Office work came to a stop when it was time for ten baby ducklings to leave the nest. Bank employees had to lend a hand to get them all safely to the water -and take pictures, too!

Where Are They Now: 6 "Stars" of Embarrassing Viral Videos. Only one seems to have put the experience to good use.

How to take a web headshot. If you don't upload yours, someone else probably will.

A roundup of awesome Geek Cakes. Whatever your passion, there's a way to illustrate it in frosting.

Stripper Tempest Storm is 80 years old, and still performing!

Two guys playing around with Google Moon find more than they were supposed to see. I would tell you how it ends, but then I'd have to kill you.

One man plays eight flute parts and sounds like his own orchestra. He probably conducted, too.

'Dark Knight' Dogma: Everything We Need To Know We Can Learn From Batman. See, Mom? I knew reading all those comic books as a kid would benefit me in some way.

The weirdest news stories of the week.

Go Down Gambling

Ernie Kovacs, set to the music of Blood Sweat and Tears. (via Metafilter)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

9 People Who Knew They Could Do It

The wonderful response and suggested additions to the post 9 People Who Did It Anyway led me to explore more people who could’ve taken the easy way out due to disabilities, but instead followed their passions.

read more | digg story

Informative Links

Flowing Data has a map showing the spread of Wal*Mart stores from 1964 to the present, but only in the United States. (via the Presurfer)

A government SHOULD fear its people and not the other way around!

West Virginia Residents Propose Alternative to Coal Mining. They know all too well what damage coal causes.

Some guys in their 20’s and 30’s are having vasectomies, rather than take a chance on unexpected fatherhood. Is the peace of mind worth possible regrets in a few years?

Elaborate Algorithms Predict Ticket Prices. Plan ahead and use these tips to find the best rates on airline flights.

Cooking with Coffee. Eight recipes for food that contain your favorite beverage.

How to break the habit of wasting food. These twenty tips will help you buy only what you need and use what you have.

The 1984 phone call that changed the Olympics forever. Despite the Soviet boycott, China would participate in the games for the first time since 1952.

Five medical breakthroughs which came about by accident. There are probably more, but the researchers said, "I meant to do that."

Remember the touching story of a horribly wounded US marine and the bride who stood by him? A year later, things have not worked out at all.

Anti-American Cartoon

From North Korea. A rough Babelfish translation from the Russian description on YouTube:
Cartoon calling children to learn. The hero of cartoon, deciding problem it fills up also in the sleep with the aid of the combat pencils it heats American ships and tanks (tanks in Americans in this [multike] - floating). Splendid [propagandist]��[kiy] cartoon, is imperatively [rekomendovan] by all, who does not love America.

If you watch the whole thing, it turns out to be a geometry lesson! (via Dark Roasted Blend)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Trinity Test

The Atomic Age began 63 years ago today, when the first atomic bomb was successfully detonated at the Alamogordo Bombing and Gunnery Range in a remote part of New Mexico.

The Trinity test, as it was known, was the culmination of the American effort to win the race against Germany (and, ultimately, the Soviet Union) in building an atomic bomb. A mere three weeks after the test, the United States used atomic bombs to destroy the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But prior to the 16th, none of those involved in the project knew if they had built a devastating new weapon or a spectacular dud.

Even those who designed the bomb were moved by its performance. J. Robert Oppenheimer famously quoted the Bhagavad Gita:

"If the radiance of a thousand suns were to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the mighty one. Now I am become Death, destroyer of worlds." More prosaically, Dr. Kenneth Bainbridge, site director of the Trinity test, said: "Now we are all sons-of-bitches."

Wired has the story and a photo gallery.

One-Eyed Jacks

From Wikipedia:

One-Eyed Jacks, a western movie released in 1961, is the only film directed by Marlon Brando, who replaced the original director, Stanley Kubrick.

Brando also stars as the lead character, Rio. Other notable actors in the work include Karl Malden as Dad Longworth, Slim Pickens and Katy Jurado.

Rod Serling, already famed as the creator of The Twilight Zone series, wrote an adaptation of the novel The Authentic Death of Hendry Jones by Charles Neider (1956) - which was itself simply a novelization of the career of Billy the Kid relocated to Monterey, CA - at the request of producer Frank Rosenberg. The treatment was rejected and Rosenberg next hired Sam Peckinpah, who finished his first script on 11 November 1957. Marlon Brando's Pennebaker Productions had paid $40,000 for the rights to Authentic Death and then signed a contract with Stanley Kubrick to direct for Paramount Pictures. Peckinpah handed in a revised screenplay on 6 May 1959, and all was set.

It didn't stay all set. First, Kubrick didn't like the screenplay. Brando fired Peckinpah and hired Calder Willingham, but he and Brando stalled, so both Willingham and Kubrick were canned. Guy Trosper became the new screenwriter, who worked on the story with Brando, who hired himself as director.

The movie as it runs today has very little resemblance to the Neider novel, and what remains has much more resonance with history than fiction.

Fun Links

Some of the best Marx Brothers quotes.

Bomomo is some kind of cool art toy. Learning to use it is half the fun!

How Not to Shoot a Gun. The right to bear arms doesn’t automatically make you competent.

Unfortunate ad placement.

Animal Crossing Tragedy. Get your hankies ready. Then call your mother.

Dark Knight Shift: Why Batman Could Exist--But Not for Long. A scientist looks at how the only non-supernatural superhero would operate in real life.

Synchronized Motorbikes. Police in Italy show off their skills to celebrate some anniversary. Meanwhile, pickpockets were having a field day at Tivoli Fountain.

The Most Irresponsible Science Lesson Ever Taught. Oh, by the way, don't try this at home.


The 10 Weirdest U.S. Museums. A truly bizarre experience may be closer than you think!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Good Reads and Information

A new study finds that coffee drinkers are less likely to die of heart disease. I’ll drink to that.

Experiments at the CERN particle accelerator may lead to superfast internet speeds -up to 10 gigabytes per second! And we were worried about a tear in the space-time continuum.

Bankrupt! 65 Famous People Who Lost It All. Still, none of them ever had to worry about their next meal.

The family and a court demands that an 85-year-old 'minimally conscious' patient be treated as if he’s going to recover. Doctors refuse, saying further intervention is “torture” and therefore unethical. How should this be resolved?

Colossal construction: The world's nine largest science projects. My hat is off to the people who wrote the grant proposals for these.

The Top Ten Passwords. Don’t use these unless you’re trying to hack into someone else’s account. And dont do that, either.

Here's another round of creative computer case mods. A piano, V8 engine, whiskey bottle -is there anything you can't stick a computer inside?

Europe and Asia have figured it out, so why is the American rail system still so unspeakably awful? A transcontinental train ride can be fun, if you've got unlimited patience.

10 of the Greenest Colleges in America. One is where my parents met.

70 Signs of Intelligent Life at YouTube. Media outlets, cultural institutions, universities and non-profits have their own channels you can subscribe to or bookmark.


Harry Chapin, 1977. (via Fark)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Dancing Pirate

The story of a Boston dance teacher who gets shanghaied by buccaneers who might make his next steps be off the plank! 1936.

Fun Links

Literary Tattoos is a blog documenting tattoos from books, poetry, music, and other sources. (via Look at This)

"I ran into US graffiti artist Broken Crow at the Cans Festival earlier this year. I jokingly
suggested that next time he was in the UK he might want to paint my house. Didn't expect him
to agree." (via b3ta)

In search of the magical penis thieves. Belief in penis theft dates back thousands of years in Asia, but is still a problem in parts of Africa.

8 Crazy Stories From The ER. The medical cases with images are not for the squeamish, but they will make you feel healthier and more responsible by comparison.

It's Lovely! I'll Take It! is a blog featuring "A collection of poorly chosen photos from real estate listings. With love." (via Metafilter)

Roadsign Romance. (via Look at This)

A performance on the Russian Bar, recorded for Chinese television at the Circus Festival of Monte Carlo. The final stunt is unbelievable!

Drivers are crazy on the streets of New Delhi, but not many are as crazy as a guy text messaging while reclining on a motorcycle in traffic!

12 Extremely Weird Diseases and Conditions You’ve (Probably) Never Heard Of. I’ve heard of most of these, but I’ve been called extremely weird myself.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: The Abridged Script. Full of spoilers, rough language, and laughs.

Boxing Cat

Gizmo wants to be a contender.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Shrunken Heads

From IMDb:
Neighborhood gang members murder three kids on a New York street. They are brought back to life by a Haitian voodoo priest to get revenge on their killers. 194.

Fun Links

People just like you, shown wearing their super hero costumes. If you can call the Joker, Edward Scissorhands, and Captain Carpetfoam super heros.

GORBACHOV: The Music Video.

Ed Norton faces his inner Hulk. And is disappointed.

The 7 Creepiest Real-Life Robots. From this point, they're just going to get creepier as we cross the uncanny valley.

Dopey the hamster, and her private Lego Elevator. So cute and so geeky at the same time!

Western Spaghetti is made with nothing you would guess. Probably nothing that's in your kitchen now!

Improve Everywhere took 16 sets of identical twins on a subway ride to create a Human Mirror. Those who witnessed it were delighted with the spectacle.

The weirdest news stories of the week.

Name of the week: A place to work if you really don't want to do any work. (via b3ta)

The Neatorama Show Episode #3

Episode #3 of The Neatorama Show is up at Neatorama and at Dayrobber. This is as close as I'll ever come to flashing on video, but I kept my shirt on. And I must be getting a bit better at this, since it took me a while to find the goofiest possible screenshot of my face.

Millimeters Matter

(via Dark Roasted Blend)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Information Links

The majority of glaciers around the world are shrinking. The exception is California's Mount Shasta, where glaciers are growing, not in spite of, but because of warmer Pacific temperatures.

The Migration History of Humans: DNA Study Traces Human Origins Across the Continents.

The cost of war. In dollars. The loss of life, property, and livelihood of those involved is a whole different story.

Elite Choice did an interview with Avi Abrams of Dark Roasted Blend.

The miseries of losing one's sense of smell. Most of us never realize how many of life's pleasures are perceived through the nose.

The King Arthur Tour. See the places haunted by the knights of the Round Table, or at least the the people the legends were based on.

A fully functional, fully integrated radio receiver, much smaller than any previous radio, created from a single carbon nanotube. Our future gadgets might all be so small we can lose them with a sneeze.

12 Monuments Dedicated to Amazing Women: From Joan of Arc to the Working Women of Amsterdam. (via Look At This)

Water Found in Moon Matter. This throws the current theories of the moon's origin into question.

10 Richest People of All Time and How They Made Their Fortunes.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008


From Wikipedia:
McLintock! is a 1963 comedy Western starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara, and loosely based on Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. The film is famous (or notorious) for its two spanking scenes, in which mother and daughter are each paddled with coal shovels: the daughter by her suitor, the mother by her estranged husband.

Fun Links

How to make a Thing in a Jar.

Name of the week. (via b3ta)

Oh no, maybe this one beats it.

Keys To "Doomsday Vault" May Be Locked Inside. (via Fark)

Who Dunnit? by Pascal Campion.

12 Fantastically Funny Farts on Film.

Digg Users Hate Everything; Bury Internet. It's scary how accurate this satirical article really is. Only Digg users will understand.

The dumbest injuries in sports. First, the injury hurts. Then it hurts again every time you have to explain how it happened.

A new ad recreates the set of The Shining in a long eye-popping tracking shot to promote The Stanley Kubrick Season. And they did it well.

Google My Maps is an application you can use for benign or even beautiful purposes. This video shows how it can also succumb to dark forces.

Arte Y Pico

Amy Oops has presented me with this picture! It was awarded to this blog, but I'll park it over at my main blog, Miss Cellania, since I have a spot for it. I traced it back and found out it is called an Arte Y Pico Award, also in Spanish. When you get the award, you are supposed to post the original rules, although I had to jump back several layers to find the original link.

1) You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award, creativity, design, interesting material, and also contrubutes to the blogger community, no matter of language.

2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.

3) Each award-winning, has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the ward itself.

4) Award-winning and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of "Arte y pico" blog , so everyone will know the origin of this award.

5) To show these rules.

So I am going to pass it on to these five. If you're not listed, it's only because there are way too many deserving blogs.

1. Phil’s Phun

2. Old Horsetail Snake

3. Omega Mom

4. Frontier Former Editor

5. Wendell Wit

Thanks, Amy!

Samantha the Fox Cub

(via Arbroath)

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

2008 Olympics Uniforms

Athletes traveling to Beijing for the Olympics next month will be equipped with uniforms for every occasion. Besides specifically designed sport uniforms, most will also have clothing to represent their nation as a unified team. These formal and/or leisure uniforms are used for official functions, press conferences, and the opening (formal) and closing (leisure) ceremonies.

The Canadian uniforms are stirring things up. They've been called pajamas, clown suits, loud, and just plain ugly. And there's some snark about the fact that they are manufactured in China.

The USA's leisure uniforms for the closing ceremonies are preppy city, but the formal uniforms for the opening ceremony won't be seen til August 8th, when the Summer Games open in Beijing.

See these and more at mental_floss.

Disclaimer: I wrote this.

Informative Links

Sphenopalatine ganglioneuralgia is the scientific name of the nasty pain you get when you get a big bite of ice cream or a slush. Most of us just call it an ice cream headache or "brain freeze".

A guide to applications available for long-distance romance and cybersex.

A new study indicates that HIV has been present in humans for 100 years -longer than we thought. It also indicates it's only been present in monkeys for a couple of hundred years -much more recently than we thought.

Our rights are inalienable, but for the USA to survive and thrive, we also must employ our responsibilities.

Gas prices are causing cutback in care and meal delivery for the elderly and disabled. Routes have been scaled back, volunteers are dropping out, and waiting lists are growing.

Google Should Deliver Its YouTube Data to Viacom in Paper Form. (via Euba)

Jazz up your lemonade with five new recipes. (via Lifehacker)

Salon in interviews Christian Lander, the creator of the blog Stuff White People Like, about evil corporations, David Sedaris, and his new book.

What John McCain didn't learn in Vietnam.

TIME names the most obnoxious tourists in the world. Americans did not win this competition.

Monday, July 07, 2008

7 Reasons Americans Go Batty For Bacon

Why are Americans so batty for bacon? It's delicious, it's decadent -- and it's also a fashion statement. Yours Truly was cited as an "expert", mainly because of this post.

read more | digg story

The Beachcomber

From Wikipedia:

"The Vessel of Wrath" is a short story by W. Somerset Maugham. Written in 1931 it first appeared in the April, 1931 edition of International Magazine (see Stott, 1973). Maugham often introduced short stories as a contribution to periodicals and then later included them in books or collected editions. In 1933 "The Vessel of Wrath" was included in his book Ah King.

The 1954 film, The Beachcomber, starred Robert Newton as Ginger Ted, Glynis Johns as Miss Jones, Donald Sinden as the Resident, and Paul Rogers as Reverend Jones. The location is transferred from the Dutch-colonised Alas Islands to the fictitious British-colonised Welcome Islands, with Donald Sinden as the Resident.

Fun and Funny Links

James Lipton interviews Hellboy on Inside the Actors Studio.

How do deaf people swear? This video spells it out.

The first five minutes of The Dark Knight. If this doesn't pull you into the theaters, nothing will.

13 Last Requests That Prove It's OK to Laugh at Dead People. Either from a sense of humor or spite, these folks left a lasting impression.

Jedi Gym. A Star Wars nerd opens a fitness center for like-minded individuals. Just when you start to think this is too long, unexpected events make it something very different.

Play with this crazy hair! (Thanks, Bill!)

Open Doors. A maddening maze game that sucked up a big part of my Friday. (via b3ta)

The history of the Super Soaker. It all started when a nuclear engineer wanted a better water pistol. (via Fark)

Many of the Muppet characters were inspired by real people or other fictional characters. Some Muppets changed over time as they became viewer favorites. Read the stories behind ten of them.

Let's Dance!

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Friday, July 04, 2008

October Sky

From Wikipedia:
October Sky is a 1999 film produced by Charles Gordon, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Chris Cooper and Laura Dern. It is based on the true story of Homer Hickam, a coal miner's son who was inspired by the first Sputnik launch to take up rocketry against his father's wishes.

Fourth of July Links

To get you into the proper patriotic mood, check out nine delightful versions of Stars and Strips Forever. And the latest, from the Muppets.

The Ultimate Man’s Guide to Fireworks. But women will like it, too. (via Gorilla Mask)

Are your holiday fireworks harming the environment? Duh.

Are Firework Legal in Your State? There may also be additional city restrictions.

Fireworks effect to watch for.

Fireworks to Avoid.

Redneck Pyrotechnics.

Witness the bizarre and dangerous custom of people launching bottle rockets from their butts. Here are even more videos.

Can you pass the latest US citizenship test? (via Cynical-C)

The Foreign Origins of our Patriotic Things.

Patriotic Bikinis.

America's Regional Hot Dog Styles. (via Neatorama)

A backyard celebration.

For more links, jokes, and videos, see Fireworks, The Fourth of July, Fire, Barbecue, and Computer Trap Shoot.

Yankee Doodle Dandy

James Cagney from the movie Yankee Doodle Dandy. Happy Independence Day to all my fellow Americans!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

10 Really Big Uncle Sams

The USA’s Uncle Sam is a big man. He’s almost always depicted as larger than life. And you’ll find him all over the country!

read more | digg story

Good Reads

Before he was a noted author, Kurt Vonnegut was a POW in Nazi Germany. In this 1945 letter to his family, he relates the experiences that would become Slaughterhouse Five.

The Gospel of Judas rocked the biblical world a couple of years ago, but the story behind the discovery, translation, and interpretation is as riveting as what the text itself says.

Extreme microbes have moved in to clean up a pit of toxic waste even the EPA's Superfund can't deal with. These species may even have the power to cure cancer.

Top Ten Things Kids Stick Up Their Noses. (via Bits and Pieces)

Foaming soap costs more than regular liquid soap, but the real difference is the container. And the secret is that the foaming soap you pay more for is regular liquid soap that has been watered down!

What is Guerrilla Marketing? An overview with links to a highly informative eight-part series.

20 Deadliest Plants on the Planet.

Excavations at Ferry Farm in Virginia have turned up the foundation of George Washington's boyhood home. Half a million artifacts have been uncovered and are being studied for clues about Washington's early life.


I've followed Jacek through two blogs already, one when he was presenting himself as a New York party boy and another which chronicled his journey to an MBA. Now he has a new one called Next Up.

Carl Zimmer and his blog The Loom have left Scienceblogs and is now blogging at Discover Magazine. He still maintains his auxiliary blog, Carl Zimmer's Science Tattoo Emporium.

Godzilla vs. Disco Lando

(Thanks, atomicsecrets!)

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Amelia Earhart

It was 71 years ago today that American aviator Amelia Earhart, along with navigator Fred Noonan, disappeared over the Pacific, never to be found. This was Earhart's second attempt at flying around the world.

The disappearance of the celebrated flier remains perhaps the most tantalizing unsolved mystery in aviation history. In the age of Charles Lindbergh and other daredevil fliers, Amelia Earhart became a household name in 1928, after becoming the first woman to fly across the Atlantic. True, it was as a passenger with a male pilot and copilot, but she soloed across the Atlantic in 1932.

Wired has the story on what happened on July 2, 1937.

Fun Links

Put this down for your next Asian excursion: a park in Korea dedicated to sexual pleasure.

The Weirdest Examples of Mass Hysteria. You might not be familiar with the Tanganyika Laughter Epidemic, the Mad Gasser of Mattoon, and the Monkey Man of New Delhi. Yet.

Prehistoric man uses his brain.

7 People From Around the World With Real Mutant Superpowers. Put these people together and you'd have a hero even better than Superman.

You don't play chicken with a train because they never lose. Here's a near-miss that will make you cringe.

Barnyard Shenanigans. A classic that made me laugh out loud all over again.

How to kill time at the office. Admit it, you do this all the time, don't you?

Play Election 2008! The game is not easy, but it will make you giggle.

Genre by Don Hertzfeldt. All types of movies explained by a cute little animated bunny.

10 Simple (and Fun) Image Generators

Last week my computer died. I have a new one, but I lost my work notes and bookmarks, so I've been looking through my online archives to get back up to speed. The process is a stroll down memory lane, where I found many image generators that I've had fun with over the years. They'll come in handy, since I can't find my original Photoshop disc!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Happy Canada Day!

Today is Canada Day, formerly Dominion Day.

Canadas Really Big by the Arrogant Worms

It's a great excuse to pull out some jokes and links about Canada! Please leave your favorite Canada Day tradition in the comments.

Information Links

Are the 5 Beijing Olympic Mascots causing the recent disasters in China?

Top 10 Amazing Chemical Reactions. This is what made learning about moles and Avogadro's number in high school chemistry worth the effort.

The price of food: 2007 vs. 2008.

10 (More) Stunning Bridges From Around The World.

An Attack That Came Out of the Ether. Political smears transmitted via chain email or hard to combat because they spread far and fast and operate under the radar.

The Cathode Ray Tube Site. (via Everlasting Blort)

30 Psychobabble Phrases - Which Do You Hate Most? I get OCD when boderline anal bipolar schizophrenics act out, self-medicate, and light up the scanner.

How to Disguise an Industrial Eyesore. With art, of course!

In the Night Kitchen

Maurice Sendak’s childrens story. (via Metafilter)