Friday, October 30, 2009
How Do Vaccines Work and Are They Dangerous? Understand the basics and then go get your flu shot.
The 10 Neatest New York Inventions Ever. The Empire state is the birthplace of many of our modern comforts, such as Jell-o, toilet paper, and air conditioning.
Curious Expeditions needs help identifying a place where a vintage photo was taken. The biggest clue is the building in the background with its distinctive architecture.
Homeless by choice, because an apartment isn't worth it. Another camped in her car to ride out depression with her dog and cat. (via Metafilter)
The United States' plan to conquer Canada. Which is part of a plan to conquer England. (via Dark Roasted Blend)
Newsweek presents a pictorial history of birth control methods. We've come a long way since the Greek philosopher Aristotle recommended olive oil as a spermicide!
Fifty-one years ago today, a scary mistake by a cardiologist led to the development of modern angiograms. Angiograms then led to coronary bypass surgery, which has saved countless lives.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Perfect for Halloween, the Meat Hand is a regular meatloaf made into the shape of a hand! Not Martha has the instructions for several different versions, depending on how badly you want to creep out your dinner guests.
What do vampires talk about when they get together? Let's listen in on the family reunion.
The Six Creepiest Places on Earth. Some are haunted; some only have the memories of terrible things that happened there.
Six Popular Monster Myths. Yeah, monsters are myths but they come from some unpleasant place in the human psyche that almost makes sense.
Halloween Costumes to Inflict upon the Innocent. Because babies can't fight back!
Twelve Ossuaries Around the World. You might call it an index of boneyards where the bones are showing.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Creature from the Haunted Sea is a 1961 comedy film directed by Roger Corman. Written by Charles B. Griffith, the film is a parody of spy, gangster and monster movies, concerning a secret agent, XK150 (played by Robert Towne under the pseudonym "Edward Wain"), who goes under the code name "Sparks Moran" in order to infiltrate a criminal gang led by Renzo Capetto (Antony Carbone), who is trying to transport a colonel, a group of exiled Cuban nationals, and a large portion of the Cuban treasury out of the country.
What does it take to get kids to eat healthy foods? Bribery, according to scientific studies.
America\'92s Nastiest Toxic Waste Dumps (And Whether Or Not You Live Near One). Always good information to have handy.
Ze Frank tells the history of Afghanistan in three minutes. Just an overview, but more than most Americans know about a country we're fighting in.
The Top Ten Internet Rules and Laws. They were never legislated, but are more like scientific laws in that they are observed in action over and over.
A people's history of the internet: from Arpanet in 1969 to today. I found out the first message sent on the internet was "L... O..." and then it crashed.
How Rewards Can Backfire and Reduce Motivation. Ask anyone who turned an enjoyable hobby into a career.
Norman Rockwell: The Original King of the Photoshop. Of course, the software didn't exist back then, but he was a master at taking a photograph and making it something special.
The term ghost ship can refer to a mysterious apparition of a ship when a ship is not really there, or it can refer to an abandoned ship found with no crew or passengers, usually under mysterious circumstances. Both kinds are listed here in these ten spooky stories of ghost ships. (via Unique Daily)
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
There are more haunted places and scary stories around the world than you can shake a stick at. Here are a few you might not be familiar with already, including a haunted cave, a haunted bridge, and a haunted tunnel in this article I wrote for mental_floss.
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Especially if she's a cat.
No matter what zoo patrons expect from animals on display, some are not going to fit their expectations. A wise zookeeper would respect that, for his own good.
Salvador Dali taking his anteater for a walk.
Terminator 2, told in only nine minutes thanks to a hip-hop narration. Admittedly, it's easier if you've already seen the movie, but who hasn't?
The 8 Manliest Images on the Internet. Trying to outdo these could be dangerous, or even lethal.
Terry Tate, Office Linebacker. The kind of guy every office needs to keep productivity up.
DIY Halloween Decorations. Creepy displays that will make your party the scariest on the block.
Monday, October 26, 2009
Also known as City of the Dead. From Wikipedia:
City of the Dead (US title: Horror Hotel) is a 1960 film directed by John Llewellyn Moxey and starring Christopher Lee and Valentine Dyall.
On the recommendation of her professor (Christopher Lee), a young female student (played by Venetia Stevenson) travels to a small Massachusetts town to do some research into witchcraft. She finds the town occupied by the reincarnation of an infamous witch (played by Patricia Jessel) burned at the stake in the 17th century.
MC Trebek is in da house! A mashup by Tronovitch shows just how cool Jeopardy is.
Our Favorite Vampires. Does not include vampires born in the past two years.
What English might sounds like to a non-English speaking person, wrapped up in a killer beat with dancing girls. Oll Raigth!
This will explain why this blog has sucked for the past two weeks.
The Critterati Photo Contest. Pictures of pets dressed as literary characters. It doesn't get much more fun than that!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
J. Carrol Naish plays a mad descendent of the original Dr. Frankenstein who, with his mute assistant (played by Lon Chaney Jr.), take to murdering young women for experimentation in hopes to revive his great ancestor's creation. Things start to heat up when Dracula (Zandor Vorkov) arrives and promises to revive Frankenstein's monster in return for a serum that will grant him immortality. The film was distributed by Troma Entertainment.
Friday, October 23, 2009
The film is the eighth Hammer film featuring Dracula, and the seventh film to star Lee in the title role, and a sequel to Dracula AD 1972, with action which follows up on the previous Hammer Dracula film without being dependent on it.
1972 sequel to The Blob. From YouTube:
A geologist (Godfrey Cambridge) unwittingly brings home an unusual frozen piece of debris from the North Pole. But when it accidentally thaws, the hungrier-than-ever blood-red Blob comes to life again, consuming nearly everyone in its path and terrorizing the town.Can this bizarre creature ever be stopped?
A man joined the Army at age 39 so his wife will be covered by health insurance. She needs chemotherapy for ovarian cancer, but he won't be there when she gets the treatment.
Scientists have developed a robot that can shuss down the hills on skis. Of course, just like the Winter Olympics, it's much more fun to watch its sips and tumbles. (via Neatorama)
An Epidemic of Fear: How Panicked Parents Skipping Shots Endangers Us All. Diseases that were once made to be rare are now making comebacks because some skip the vaccines.
A time-lapse video of Tibetan monks from the Drepung Loseling Monastery creating a sand mandala over five days. Then they just sweep it up! (via Metafilter)
Seas that are rising twice as fast as expected are threatening cities like Shanghai, China, which is ten feet above sea level. They are already battling saltwater and drainage problems.
50 Kick-Ass Websites You Need to Know About. I know enough of these to think the rest are worth checking out. Yes, mental_floss is listed!
Good Night and Tough Luck. A surprising number of things can go wrong with getting a good night's sleep.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
People in Order. A fascinating video project from filmmakers Lenka Clayton and James Price.
The Pixar Lamp: the whole story. A much more sordid tale than the film studio would have you believe.
The Blue Beanie. This point and click adventure game can eat up all your available time and more if you let it!
5 Winter Sports The Olympics Are Missing. If there's an opportunity for someone to crash spectacularly, they might someday be included.
This guy gets really drunk and wanders all over a convenience store and the surveillance video becomes an internet hit. But the show is even better with editing, a nice soundtrack, and proper silent film staging. (via Gorilla Mask)
A man cheats death (just barely) when crossing the street. A longer video of the same accident gives more context.
A Photoshop contest shows what the world will be like after the internet dies. I honestly don't know how I'll cope.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
An interview with Randall Munroe of xkcd on his first book. And some other bloggers who have made the leap into print.
What it's like to be a Canadian with a baby in Mongolia, a land where they take breastfeeding very seriously. And not just for babies. (via Metafilter)
Everyone hears the original story, but few ever hear the admission that it was a hoax. Here are five such stories you should know about.
More and more people are dying from natural causes in prison. Hospice care in prison uses inmates to minister to each other in their last days.
Van Gogh often added sketches or paintings to his letters, to illustrate what he wrote about. Some people were lucky enough to be his pen pals and recipients of personal art.
Homeless at age 97, Bessie Mae Berger and her two sons live in an SUV in Venice, California. They prefer this arrangement to being separated.
The beginning of life may have been in rocks instead of the primordial soup. The alkaline vents of the ancient ocean had the necessary chemical reactions, even if its a counterintuitive idea. (via Metafilter)
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
If scientists and police investigators can reconstruct a face from a skull, why can't we figure out what Skeletor looked like before he was a skeleton? We can, so Manuel Calavera and Jack Skellington get the treatment as well. (via Laughing Squid)
Dustin Hoffman is very cut, which can mean something very different to a Jewish man.
Down For The Count: Dracula's Greatest Comics Appearances. (via Metafilter)
The Hottest Heads of State. I would rank the Prince of Liechtenstein higher and Vladimir Putin lower, but otherwise it's a pretty good list. (via YesButNoButYes)
7 Horrifying Moments from Classic Kids Movies. Most of these are so old, even I was traumatized as a child!
Messy, embarrassing, and delicious- what's not to love? The Greatest Pie Fights in Movies.
Think about what this might be before you click the link. The best costume ever for a trick-or-treater in a wheelchair.
Monday, October 19, 2009
The Opium Museum tells the history of opium use, but since opium paraphernalia was outlawed, is actually about the rare antiques market.
The economic crisis we know today began back in the 1970s. (via Simply Left Behind)
Would you ever consider giving marijuana to your nine-year-old? What if the child was violent, in pain, ate fabric, and had tried every other drug available? Here's the followup. (via Metafilter)
Over 2000 people have seen the same face in recurring dreams. Do you recognize This Man? Oh sure, it's viral marketing, but w don't know for what yet. (via the Presurfer)
What other worlds are most likely to harbor life? We can't yet get the odds on exoplanets, so this list is for our solar system only.
Five of the original Munchkins from The Wizard of Oz are still alive. They were recently reunited to talk about their experiences on the film set. (via Neatorama)
The Worst Job of the 19th Century? Tongue-Pullers, Nipple-Pinchers & Anal Tobacco Blowers Try to Revive the Dead. Well, I guess somebody has to do it. (via Boing Boing)
Fossils of flying reptiles come in two versions: the older long-tailed pterosaurs and the more recent short-tailed versions. The fossil gap between the two was a mystery until 20 skeletons of the new species Darwinopterus were discovered early in 2009 in northeast China.
The Chicago Flood of 1992 was caused by an illegal underground railroad system that everyone forgot about. When the collapse finally came, it took a live radio report from the "drain" before authorities could figure out what happened.
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
William Wayne Justice wasn't in history texts when I was in school, because the history he was involved in was news at the time. He deserves to be in those texts today, so future generations can know as much as I've learned today. Judge Justice served on the bench in Texas for 41 years until his death Tuesday in Austin. Texans once sported bumper stickers that called Justice the "most hated man in Texas." President Lyndon Johnson appointed Justice to the federal bench in East Texas where he used his power as an activist judge to help those who were least able to help themselves.
His legal compassion forever changed the lives of millions of schoolchildren, prisoners, minorities, immigrants and people with disabilities in Texas. He ordered the integration of public schools and public housing. He outlawed crowding, beatings and inhumane medical care in prisons and youth lockups. He ordered that community homes be provided to people with mental disabilities who were living in large institutions. He expanded voting opportunities.
And that was just the tip of the docket.
Justice also changed the landscape of public education. He ordered education for undocumented immigrant children and bilingual classrooms. And, back in the nonconformist hippie days of 1970, he ruled that bearded and long-haired students, including Vietnam veterans, had a right to attend public college. "I held that that was silly," he said in June 2009 while reminiscing about the old Tyler Junior College rule forbidding long hair on male students.
Judge Justice pushed Texas kicking and screaming into the 20th century. He endured death threats, political opposition, and social ostracism, but never even had an unlisted phone number. In later years, he received many honors and awards for his work. He will be missed. (via Metafilter)
Kiteboarding (snowboarding and flying a kite) can be a lot of fun. And then this happens. Language NSFW in French environments.
7 New Professors on RateMyProfessors.com. If only I had teachers this interesting, I might be able to remember college.
Pet Confessions. Kind of like PostSecret for animals, except they are made up and much funnier than real pets would be.
Here's a frog riding a motorcycle. I don't even have a one-liner to follow that. (via Gorilla Mask)
5 Irrational Fears (Even Rational People Have). Your odds of death or injury are far greater driving to work every day.
11 Variations on the Rubik’s Cube. Most are centered on the idea of making the puzzle harder!
Thursday, October 15, 2009
If you have the time and tools to make your own Halloween costume, all you need is a little inspiration to make it awesome, like the ten in this article I wrote for mental_floss. Note: these are presented in no particular order. They all rank #1 in my book!
Witness the 7th Annual Altered Barbie Exhibit, which took place last month in San Francisco. Artists from all over exhibited Barbie dolls in all manners of unspeakable scenarios. Oh, they may be unspeakable, but you can see them displayed at If It’s Hip, It’s Here. NSFW. (via Nag on the Lake)
If all band-aids were packaged as cleverly as these, it would take the sting out of getting a boo-boo.
The Golden Age of Video. The only thing these movies have in common is the rhythm and the rhyme.
Twilight: The Musical is a parody of the Stephanie Meyer novel and movie. Five of six segments are ready for your viewing pleasure. (via Metafilter)
The Sashimi Tabernacle Choir. Also known as "fish on a Volvo".
5 Creatures That May Not Exist, But Get Government Protection Anyway. After all, it's good for tourism!
Top 10 Creepiest Ghost Movies. (via the Presurfer)
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
How to make Aloe Ice Cream. Really!
Food Rules: Your Dietary Dos and Don'ts. Good advice contributed by readers make the most out of your meals.
How Traffic Jams Help the Environment. Making the streets more efficient only leads to more drivers.
The History of David Seville and The Chipmunks. Desperation is the true mother of invention. (via Boing Boing)
A healthy, breast-feeding baby is "too fat" to get health insurance.
An interview with Frank Warren, the webmaster behind PostSecret. And an opportunity to win a copy of his new book.
35 Years of the World’s Best Microscope Photography. These awesome images are from Nikon’s annual Small World photomicrography competition.
Is there an evolutionary reason for women to undergo menopause? One theory says that it happens so they can be grandmothers.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Max Hirschberg rode a bike for two months to get to Nome, Alaska to join the Klondike gold rush in 1900. And you think you have a difficult commute. (via Metafiter)
8 Ingenious Ways Animals Outsmart Predators. Creativity comes when your life depends on it! (via Gorilla Mask)
Right Stuff, Wrong Sex: NASA’s Lost Female Astronauts. They were physically better qualified than the male astronauts, but politically never had a chance. (via Boing Boing)
Scans of the human brain show how neurons fire in different patterns when we are asleep, drugged, experiencing seizures or headaches, and when the brain is damaged. (via the Presurfer)
Screenwriter John Cox posted a guest blog at Frankensteinia about his search for the site of the only location shot in the 1931 movie Frankenstein. The search led him to Malibou Lake and a serious case of deja vu. (via Metafilter)
Viewing one’s own body can reliably reduce the perception of pain. Maybe you shouldn’t close your eyes while getting a tattoo. Worth a try.
6 Assorted Animal Adventures. Fate leads some creatures to fame and/or fortune they never asked for.
Monday, October 12, 2009
Butterball goes down the stairs. That’s a big accomplishment for an adorable seven-week-old puppy who’s never done it before.
Extreme Swing Tricks. Just some things kids pick up on their way to parkour or Olympic half-pipe.
One Man Band. I wish my town had wonderful characters like this.
The Coolest Guy in the World. He’s kinda just great at everything except making those around him feel adequate.
Why I Slept with 1300 Women. (via Ty.rannosaur.us)
How to Defy Death on the Golf Course. I had no idea the sport was so dangerous!
Some people dream of fame and fortune, others of making the world a better place. Reed Fish and his wife Liz dream of taking photographs of every Sizzler restaurant in the United States.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Friday, October 09, 2009
10 Reasons Not to Bring Someone Back from the Dead. You can learn a lot from science fiction. (via Gorilla Mask)
Verizon Wireless pranks a customer. He made a call, they showed up, just like in those ridiculous TV ads.
Roman Polanski on To Catch a Predator. So what if the interviewer and interviewee are 30 years apart, it still works.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Support the cause by buying one of the 15 Strangest Breast Cancer Awareness Products.
Imagine watching Star Wars and the actors, sets, and style changed every 15 seconds. You’d be imagining the collaborative project Star Wars Uncut, which still needs volunteers, even though the first trailer is out.
Sesame Street Channels Mad Men. Good work, sycophants! (via YesButNoButYes)
7 Secrets Only Two Living People Know (For Some Reason). That reason is that if only one person knew it, no one would believe they knew it.
Thursday, October 08, 2009
When you plan your Halloween party, the food must be front and center. Since we published Gruesome Halloween Party Food two years ago, many more creepy and delicious treats have surfaced. Try serving the dishes in this list I posted at mental floss, and your guests will be talking about your party for years. Warning: some images may be disturbing.
Top 10 Fascinating Facts About Cheese, researched by a cheese fan, encompasses a great portion of the history of cheese as well as the different varieties and how they are made. Who knew you could buy cheese made from moose milk? (via Unique Daily)
When it comes to phones, notebooks and portable game consoles, smaller is nearly always better. But sometimes a gadget just needs to be really, really huge.
Benjamin Franklin invented a musical instrument in 1761 based on the same principle as wine glasses played with a wet finger. Listen to French artist Thomas Bloch demonstrating a glass harmonica, or armonica, at the Paris Music Museum.
Volcanoes Wiped Out All Forests 250 Million Years Ago. That time, it took them four million years to recover.
Famous Dogs Adopted From Shelters or The Streets. See, the pup you rescue during Adopt A Shelter Dog Month may turn out to be a star!
Putting Humpty to Shame: How to Have a Great Fall (and Survive). Still, you don’t want to try this at home.
He wrote the song. He owns the copyright. But MySpace won’t let Edwyn Collins upload it because a Warner Brothers automatically protests anyone but themselves controlling music.
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Few things go together as well as bicycles and music. If you didn’t already know that, there are plenty of people who will prove it to you. Read about marching bands on bicycles, rock bands touring on bikes, and musicians who play bicycle parts in this article I wrote for mental_floss.
Fifteen years after the bones were found, a new species of hominid dating from 4.4 million years ago has been publicly unveiled. Meet Ardipithecus ramidus. (via Metafilter)
Student Loans by the Numbers. The time to start working on those scholarships is now!
Putting Things In Perspective. Before you click the link, think about the one thing you want badly but can’t have.
Understanding the Anxious Mind. Those who realize they are born worriers can learn to deal with anxiety in their own way.
The High Price of Being a Gay Couple. The differences in taxes, job benefits, government benefits, and other expenses will add up over a lifetime. (via Metafilter)
Among the scientists, inventors, engineers, and leaders who left their mark on the world are some who were mentally ill or even downright insane. Their private peccadillos don’t survive in many history books. (via Unique Daily)
War Dances. In excerpts from Sherman Alexie’s new book, a Native American relives the last days with his father as he investigates his own hearing loss.
Monday, October 05, 2009
Superman's powers explained. Is there anything geekier than coming up with ways to make superheroes possible?
What happens when a 28 year old guy makes a fake profile of a hot girl on a free dating site? A bunch of WTF.
The 10 Manliest Geeks of All Time. Too bad most of them are fictional.
Simon’s Cat knows where the warm spot is. Like all cats, he is fully capable of taking what he wants.
The Top 12 Movie Devils. I’ll take George Burns. Or Viggo Mortensen maybe.
Make your own fractals with just a mouseover on these magic dots. Other games on the same site are just as fascinating. (via Gorilla Mask)
30 Truly Bizarre Family Portraits.
Sunday, October 04, 2009
Saturday, October 03, 2009
Friday, October 02, 2009
Thursday, October 01, 2009
Extreme pain and stress can actually impair a person's ability to tell the truth. Just in case ineffectiveness is more important than inhumanity in deciding whether to sanction torture.
9 Ways Marketing Weasels Will Try to Manipulate You. Thinking rationally before you buy will save you money, especially if you decide not to buy.
The Mystery of Hitler’s Missing Gold. They still don’t know where it is, but here are six possibilities.
Things you might not know about schizophrenia, in comic book form. There but for the grace of God go any of us. (via b3ta)
8 Historical Crossdressers: Women in a Man’s World. http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/10822 Because in many times and places, a man’s life was a lot more fun.
Roman Polanski: What Did He Do? Here’s the story from the transcripts of the 1977 grand jury investigation.
Redwoods: The Supertrees. They live for thousands of years and grow hundreds of feet, and they support an entire ecosystem in their branches.