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Updated 2017-12-11 04:02
British road barriers, modeled on children, stare into you
A town in Buckinghamshire, England, has repositioned road barriers made to look like children after a resident said they were too creepy. The toddler-sized safety posts were designed to be more attention-grabbing than the standard poles, and are.There are eight of the child-shaped bollards outside four primary schools in Iver and Iver Heath.Iver Parish Council said the bollards cost £5,395, excluding installation.In September, local resident Jonny Baker said the bollards were "creepy and hideous"."I look out of my window every morning and these are what I see. They're absolutely terrifying," he said.Here's video of the bollards.
Unicorn duct tape
At the outset, let me address the likelihood that this post will eventually be visited by someone who has unspeakable plans for a unicorn, is holding a unicorn hostage, or who intends to affix a unicorn to ducting for less nefarious reasons. First, it's duct tape with a unicorn design (Amazon). As in pictures of unicorns are printed on the tape. Second, duct tape is in fact no good for use with ducting. Third, no special tape is required to immobilize or silence unicorns: any good store brand will do.Unicorn Duct Tape [Amazon]
Americans have no savings, with good reason: housing, education and health care costs are out of control, wages are stagnant, and the Fed has suppressed interest rates
The American savings crisis is a time-bomb, as multiple generations hurtle toward retirement with effectively no savings, and experts are now saying that having $1 million in the bank on retirement day isn't enough. Future generations will either have to let their parents starve or compromise their own ability to produce the next generation while caring for the previous one (this is the crisis underway in China and Japan right now). (more…)
Citizen journalist enthusiastically reports local house fire
Rhoda Young turned in a series of high-energy live reports after being first journalist on the scene of a house fire in Norfolk, Virginia. It's got everything local news should have: vertical video, swearing, interfering with authorities. (more…)
Trump reiterates his love for accused child molester Roy Moore in new tweet
As if we haven't already heard, Trump again tweeted this morning that he wants Roy Moore, who has a thing for young teenage girls, to beat Doug Jones, "a former state attorney who prosecuted child molesters and pedophiles." As they say, "Birds of a feather..."LAST thing the Make America Great Again Agenda needs is a Liberal Democrat in Senate where we have so little margin for victory already. The Pelosi/Schumer Puppet Jones would vote against us 100% of the time. He’s bad on Crime, Life, Border, Vets, Guns & Military. VOTE ROY MOORE!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 8, 2017Image: Evan Guest
No birth certificates allowed for Arkansas newborns
Newborns in Arkansas will go home without a birth certificate, starting today, until the state fixes its unconstitutional birth certificate law. As it now stands, Arkansas favors heterosexual parents by automatically putting the mother's husband's name on the baby's birth certificate, even if he isn't the biological father, but requiring a same-sex couple to get a court order before both parents' names could be put on the certificate.According to the Palm Beach Post:Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox on Friday set aside his orders requiring the state and three same-sex couples go into mediation on how to fix the state law to comply with the U.S. high court's order. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge earlier this week asked the state Supreme Court to stay or lift Fox's mediation order."This case has been pending for over two years and it has been more than six months since the United States Supreme Court ruled the Arkansas statutory scheme unconstitutional," Fox wrote in his order. "There are citizens and residents of the state of Arkansas whose constitutional rights are being violated on a daily basis."Judge Fox hopes that Governor Asa Hutchinson can fix the law through executive action, but if not, it probably won't be until February or later, when lawmakers convene again, that parents can expect to bring home a birth certificate along with their new baby.Image: template.net
Dylan Farrow wonders why Woody Allen still gets away with it
So much for the Weinstein Moment: Woody Allen is still too powerful and too well-connected for people in Hollywood to speak ill of. Victim Dylan Farrow (whose sibling's reportage brought Harvey Weinstein down and seemed to open a floodgate) wonders why:A prosecutor took the unusual step of announcing that he had probable cause to charge Allen but declined in order to spare me, a “child victim,” from an exhausting trial.It is a testament to Allen’s public relations team and his lawyers that few know these simple facts. It also speaks to the forces that have historically protected men like Allen: the money and power deployed to make the simple complicated, to massage the story.In this deliberately created fog, A-list actors agree to appear in Allen’s films and journalists tend to avoid the subject.Farrow names names, too: Kate Winslet, Blake Lively and Greta Gerwig each denounced Weinstein but hedge their bets for good old Woody: "Having thought it all through, you put it to one side and just work with the person," Winslet said. "Woody Allen is an incredible director."Farrow:It isn’t just power that allows men accused of sexual abuse to keep their careers and their secrets. It is also our collective choice to see simple situations as complicated and obvious conclusions as a matter of “who can say”? The system worked for Harvey Weinstein for decades. It works for Woody Allen still.
The Gävle goat: huge straw holiday goat often gets burned down
The Gävle goat is an enormous straw goat erected anually in the Swedish town. Just as traditional, though, is the act of (illegally) burning it down. Though the authorities have made efforts to prevent the arson, the Gävle goat only has about a half chance of surviving December. Reddit user desfirsit charted the historical survival rates across the month, and found that the heavy-drinking days leading up to St Lucy's Day and Christmas were most dangerous for the Gävle goat: "Only 44 percent of the goats have survived all of december."
Bosses seed Silicon Valley Christmas parties with models who impersonate fellow employees, after briefing them with back-stories
Business is booming for Silicon Valley modeling agencies that specialize in "ambiance and atmosphere models" who are sent to company Christmas parties after being briefed with back-stories that allow them pretend to be super-good-looking fellow employees, thus lulling the workers at the company into thinking that it's a kind of haven for extremely beautiful people and raising their self-esteem. (more…)
Post-punk song 'Anthropogenic Climate Change Is Real' is a wake-up call to Trump
Follow the bouncing Trump head in this music video for "Anthropogenic Climate Change Is Real" by Oakland, California post-punk band You Can’t Make This Shit Up Amerika. Written by Tennessee Mowrey and Kevin Goldberg, the song is a wake-up call to Trump and any other "fucking asshole" who doesn't believe that climate change exists.It was co-produced by my pal Ampersand, who writes:"I immediately felt that these spirited and pissed off millennials were giving voice not only to my feelings about our president and his policies around climate change, but potentially to millions of others as well, and that it was important that the song was out in the world."I agree.Give it a watch. Be forewarned, it's (rightly) sprinkled with NSFW language. Thanks, Ampersand!Previously: Debbie Harry and Joan Jett anchor the apocalyptic news for Blondie's 'Doom or Destiny' music video
Unicorn corkscrew, for your chasers
Kikkerland's unicorn corkscrew (Amazon) is clever, inexpensive and perfect for evenings in the presidency of Donald Trump, when chasers are much in-demand.Corkscrew acts as unicorn hornMaterial: Stainless steel corkscrew, beechwood baseMakes a great gift for any wine loverPortable for any party, camping trip, or wine night at homeMeasures approximately 4 by 3.5-inchI ordered one but haven't received it, yet; it looks kinda flimsy to me, retired bartender that I am. Though I wouldn't want to depend on it in a crisis, then, I'm eager to see how it looks after a few years of red-wine residue accumulates around the base of the horn.
San Francisco put the kibosh on delivery robots for now
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors has voted to restrict delivery robots to areas with very minimal foot traffic and only for research purposes. From Wired:Unlike self-driving cars, or at least self-driving cars working properly, these bots roll on sidewalks, not streets. That gives them the advantage of not dealing with the high-speed chaos of roads, other than crossing intersections, but also means they have to deal with the cluttered chaos of sidewalks. Just think about how difficult it can be for you as a human to walk the city. Now imagine a very early technology trying to do it. (Requests for comment sent to three delivery robot companies—Dispatch, Marble, and Starship—were not immediately returned.)...The legislation will require delivery robots to emit a warning noise for pedestrians and observe rights of way. They’ll also need headlights, and each permittee will need to furnish proof of insurance in the forms of general liability, automotive liability, and workers’ comp.
Jordan Peele is rebooting Twilight Zone for CBS
Jordan Peele -- whose 2017 surprise low-budget smash Get Out was one of the best movies I saw this year, is executive producing a Twilight Zone reboot for CBS. (more…)
When a debt collector threatened to rape a man's wife over a bogus debt, the man devoted a year towards getting his revenge
If you're in the mood to read a thrilling, long-form article about how a man got revenge on a predatory fake payday loan swindler, here's one. It's written by Zeke Faux for Bloomberg.Here's the opening:On the morning a debt collector threatened to rape his wife, Andrew Therrien was working from home, in a house with green shutters on a cul-de-sac in a small Rhode Island town. Tall and stocky, with a buzz cut and a square, friendly face, Therrien was a salesman for a promotions company. He’d always had an easy rapport with people over the phone, and on that day, in February 2015, he was calling food vendors to talk about grocery store giveaways.Therrien was interrupted midpitch by a call from his wife. She’d gotten a voicemail from an authoritative-sounding man saying Therrien was in some kind of trouble. “I need to verify an address to present you with your formal claim,” the man had said. “Andrew Therrien, you are officially notified.”A few minutes later, Therrien’s phone buzzed. It was the same guy. He gave his name as Charles Cartwright and said Therrien owed $700 on a payday loan. But Therrien knew he didn’t owe anyone anything. Suspecting a scam, he told Cartwright just what he thought of his scare tactics.Cartwright hung up, then called back, mad. He said he wanted to meet face-to-face to teach Therrien a lesson.“Come on by, asshole,” Therrien says he replied.“I will,” Cartwright said, “and I hope your wife is at home.”That’s when he made the rape threat.Therrien got so angry he couldn’t think clearly. He wasn’t going to just let someone menace and disrespect his wife like that. He had to know who this Cartwright guy was, and his employer, too. Therrien wanted to make them pay.I would love to see this as a movie or documentary.Here are the FTC charges against the kingpin of the operation, Joel Jerome Tucker, who was ordered to to pay the Federal Trade Commission $4.1 million.Image: Taber Andrew Bain / Flickr
Sanders, vindicated: Senior Democrats say the GOP's tax-plan has started a class war, and they're going to fight back on those terms
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eyjqc6HdeDUAs the Republicans plow ahead with their plan to transfer trillions of dollars from the poorest Americans to the richest, to the expense of children's health, teachers, grad students, cities, people in populous states, etc, the Democratic party establishment is finally receptive to the idea that America is in the grips of class war, and have openly declared their willingness to fight back in that war. (more…)
Dream job - squishing silicone between steel rollers
This company could probably charge people to do this job.
Did Toyota just not care that her eyebrow was falling off?
In this Toyota commercial, a woman is singing a Christmas-themed song about cars. Near the end of the commercial you can see that her right eyebrow is falling off. Did Toyota not notice? Did it know and just not care? Or did it know and realize it would be a good way to get idiots to share it online?https://youtu.be/CFkHDHxC8Os
Newt Gingrich's bogus "support" of Al Franken gets reaction on Twitter
Former Speaker of the House and faux-family-values guy Newt Gingrich pretended to support Senator Al Franken in a bizarre tweet this morning, which got lots of action on Twitter."Franken 1,053,205 Minnesotans picked him for senate in 2014 30 self appointed pure senators want him out What happened to popular vote"What? Obviously he's not supporting Al Franken, but rather he's setting the stage for a Roy Moore win. Getting out the message – and justification – that winning an election, or popular vote, trumps having a pedophile in the Senate. Hey Gingrich, does that go for perverted presidents too? Oh, but wait, Trump didn't win the popular vote, so never mind. Franken 1,053,205 Minnesotans picked him for senate in 201430 self appointed 'pure'senators want him outWhat happened to popular vote— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) December 7, 2017This isn’t a defense of Franken. It’s a defense of Roy Moore’s possible election using Franken https://t.co/hCH57DlFPF— Ubbo Ubbo (@TheRealUbboUbbo) December 7, 2017Man wait until we tell him about the electoral college https://t.co/oq7kEyAUw8— William Janover (@williamjanover) December 7, 2017Did you use that logic when you impeached Bill Clinton?— David Amoyal (@DavidAmoyal) December 7, 2017A majority of Americans picked Hillary Clinton for president. What happened to popular vote— your favorite President (me) (@hottakebob) December 7, 2017Remember when this happened... Gingrich confronted by FAMILY VALUES voter for cheating on his wife and being a bit of a Bill Clinton himself. It does not say oral sex is moral in the Holy bible... Sir. 😂 pic.twitter.com/NRurD7GPHT— Jamie (@TheGrandSlams) December 7, 2017Party over country happened— lantenengo (@lantenengo) December 7, 2017Image: Gage Skidmore
A Chrome plugin that scrambles porn sites is a post-Net Neutrality internet simulator
Got a relative or friend who doesn't understand the stakes in the net neutrality debate? The FCC Internet Porn Scrambler will help bring the issue into focus: "all of your favorite content will be instantaneously replaced on sites like Pornhub with unwatchable scrambled video." Remember to join today's protests at a local Verizon store!
Accused harasser re-used apology email for several alleged victims
Wired's Nitasha Tiku reports that Justin Caldbeck, a venture capitalist with a number of sexual harassment claims made against him, sent apology emails containing the same wording to multiple recipients.Several women who’ve received the apology emails compared notes and found similar or identical wording in the messages. Two emails viewed by WIRED included the line, “I also completely understand that you may not believe my actions yet to be sincere and it is up to me to demonstrate over time that they are.” Both also included slightly different versions of this sentence, “I want to first let you know how incredibly deeply and profoundly sorry for everything I did to make any woman feel uncomfortable.”What could be more Silicon Calley than using a "Dear $girl" form letter to apologize to one's victims? A PHP script that scrapes LinkedIn to identify and preemptively form-apologize to likely future claimaints, perhaps.
Patreon slammed after pitching fee hike as boon for creators
Patreon is to lower its percentage but apply a 35c fee to every transaction, according to a confusing announcement that's thrown the funding site's userbase into chaos. It sounds good for the platform's stars, but ruinous for creators dependent on dollar pledges. The crowdfunding platform for artists currently takes a fee of 5% (creators also pay fees charged by payment processors like Stripe or PayPal) from each pledge. That changes on December 18, when patrons will start paying 2.9% plus 35 cents for each individual pledge, according to Patreon’s product update page.Patreon says the reasoning behind its new policy is to let creators keep a larger cut of each pledge. “With this update, creators will now take home exactly 95% of each pledge with no additional fees,” the company explained on its update page.The 95% applies after the transaction fee, and a lot of the confusion was over whether that thirty-five cents gets eaten by the recipient (who then would get only 60 cents or so) or stacked onto the donor's dollar (thereby making them pay $1.35 or so). The latter is reportedly the case, but either way, the only people benefiting are whoever gets those enormous transaction fees.From one user: "Patreon has decided to blithely insult the collective intelligence of their clientele with happy talk."https://twitter.com/TomDarbyHey/status/938602278688305152If Patreon finally has to pass on the per-transaction fees that banks impose to its users, that would be understandable. But one breakdown identifies it as a shift mostly to Patreon's own benefit. And whoever there thought they could sell this as rainbows and unicorns made a mistake so obvious maybe it's not a mistake at all. Perhaps it's aimed more at investors or buyers interested in Patreon itself? This would stand to reason, especially given its recent crackdown on adult content.
Watch: Man risks his life at California fire to save a bunny rabbit
They tell you not to go back into a burning house to save a pet...well here's a man who jumped out of his car on a highway in Ventura County to save a wild rabbit from the Thomas Fire. I hope he and the rabbit are now safe and sound!
Killer cop off to jail for shooting unarmed black man in back
A North Carolina cop who shot an unarmed black man in the back is going to jail for at least 19 years. Michael Slager killed Walter Scott in 2015, while an officer with the North Charleston Police Department. He was fired after video surfaced that showed Slager firing at Scott as he fled. It was clear from the footage that Slager was not in any danger: he just wanted to kill Scott.Even then, it took two years and one mistrial to bring him to justice. ABC News:U.S. District Judge David Norton ruled today that the former officer committed second-degree murder and obstruction of justice. The judge will announce Slager's final sentencing later today.The judge's decision comes after Slager, who is white, pleaded guilty to a federal civil rights offense.
Manage your business social media by using your competitors' data
Social media has largely devoured traditional marketing channels, but the tools provided by Facebook, Twitter, et al. are more focused around individual users, not businesses. If you want to have better control over your brand’s social network profiles, take a look at SMhack Business. It’s a centralized hub for publishing and managing content, and right now you can get lifetime access from the Boing Boing Store for $49.99.Not only does it allow you to reply to messages across all of your accounts, it makes it easy to schedule posts and keep a high-level gauge of your social activity. For larger teams, you can allocate tasks to multiple collaborators, track campaign progress, and aggregate analytics into detailed reports. This platform even gives you detailed insights into your competitor’s content strategy, so you can stay on top of the game.A lifetime subscription to SMhack Business will help you streamline you digital marketing, and it currently costs $49.99 in the Boing Boing Store.
A mysterious Thai singer performing in an oyster costume is the top YouTube video for 2017
With nearly 183 million views since June, this Thai music video is the top globally trending video of 2017, according to YouTube. It's called "Until we become dust" and it's performed by a singer in a full silver and white costume whose head is elaborately masked in oyster shells and pearls. The mysteriously-garbed musician is competing in a strange Thai TV singing show called "The Mask Singer." Here are the show's rules:The contestants are broken up into four groups, each group containing 8 masked celebrities. Each episode consists of two pairs of battling contestants, up until the final for each group, where the contestants perform a duet before battling it out. The winner reveals their identity in the last episode of each season...The contestants are prompted to sing a song of their choice and design a unique costume with a team of designers. Each costume covers the entirety of the contestant's body...The identity of each contestant is kept confidential. When they arrive at the studio, staff members bring them cloaks to conceal their identity. Before filming the show, each contestant has to sign a contract ensuring they keep their identity a secret. During rehearsals, their voices are modified. The staff members who are authorized to know contestants' identity such as makeup artists, costume designers, the director, and studio staff, have signed contracts to keep it confidential. When editing the footage and audio, they lock the doors to stop anyone from looking through.Later, according to CNBC, the masked celebrity was revealed to be singer Pandavaram Prasarnmitr of the Thai rock band, Cocktail.Here's one of their music videos where you can see what he looks like without oyster shells on his face:https://youtu.be/UsnIyScLe-s
Debbie Harry and Joan Jett anchor the apocalyptic news for Blondie's 'Doom or Destiny' music video
Last year, when 45 was elected to office, Amanda Palmer told The Guardian that "frightening political climates make for really good, real, authentic art," and that "Donald Trump is going to make punk rock great again."Well, she was right.Blondie's new music video for its song "Doom or Destiny" is a great example. It features Debbie Harry and Joan Jett as cunt mug-carrying anchors for news of the "impending apocalypse:" Described by Debbie Harry as, “The most openly political video Blondie has ever done,” the cut and paste punk tribute was directed by friend of the band Rob Roth and inspired by the current state of the world. “In trying times we try harder,” adds Blondie co-founder Chris Stein, “politics have become the new pop culture phenomena."...As well as endless feminist slogans and an appearance from a familiar-looking sock puppet President, a delightful weather report for the rest of December includes soaring temperatures coinciding with an asteroid impact on the 29th, seven plagues on the 30th and thermonuclear war in time for NYE, before things spiral into total nuclear winter with lows of -27 before we steadily move into a state of post history. Oh well. Nasty women unite!The song is from Blondie's most recent album, Pollinator. Thanks, Simon!
A free sf anthology about space travel, inequality, equity and public policy: Kim Stanley Robinson, Madeline Ashby, Eileen Gun, Ramez Naam, Steven Barnes, Karl Schroeder and more!
Joey from ASU's Center for Science and the Imagination sez, "Today, we published Visions, Ventures, Escape Velocities, a free digital collection of fiction and nonfiction about the near future of space exploration, with special attention to issues of public policy, equity, and economics/financing. The book was supported by a grant from NASA, and it features stories from Madeline Ashby, Steven Barnes, Eileen Gunn, Ramez Naam, Carter Scholz, Karl Schroeder, and Vandana Singh, plus an interview with Kim Stanley Robinson." (more…)
How much energy does Bitcoin consume, and can it improve?
After Digiconomist's analysis of the total energy consumption of the Bitcoin transactions on the blockchain went viral, Timothy Lee at Ars Technica provides a much-needed reality check in the form of some technical detail and nuance about what that energy consumption means, and where it might go. (more…)
Hanging out with Bernie Sanders: it turns out that standing FOR something is a lot more politically important than merely standing AGAINST Trump
Vice reporter Eve Peyser spent a weekend on the road with Bernie Sanders, and writes vividly and charmingly about the personal habits and behind-the-scenes homeliness of the famously non-materialistic, idealistic senator. (more…)
A guy tricked Tripadvisor into making his garden shed the top-rated restaurant in London
Oobah Butler once had a job writing fake Tripadvisor restaurant reviews for £10/each, paid by restauranteurs; having learned how powerful these reviews were, he decided to turn his south London shed into the best-regarded restaurant in all of London. (more…)
To build the future, we must escape the present, or, "The bullet hole misconception"
Air force pilots in WWII got shot like crazy and suffered farcical levels of fatalities; in an effort to save airmen, the Allies used statistical analysis to determine where the planes that limped home had taken flak and armored up those sections -- which totally failed to work. That's because the planes that made it home had suffered non-critical damage, so shoring up the sections where they'd been hit had virtually no effect on the rate at which flak to critical sections of the aircraft caused it to be shot out of the sky. In other words, by looking at survivors rather than the dead, they were protecting the least important parts of the planes. (more…)
How Momentum UK learned from the Sanders Campaign to make Jeremy Corbyn Prime-Minister-in-Waiting
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Edt3d0xjEdUBack in the days of the Howard Dean campaign, it seemed that the political left had a near-monopoly on brilliant, technologically sophisticated "netroots" activists, a situation that carried over to the Obama campaigns. But by 2016, the Pepe-slinging alt-right showed that earlier right-wing cybermilitias weren't just warmed over jokes with an unhealthy appreciation for Conservapedia -- they, too, could fight effectively by forming decentralized open source insurgencies that allowed autonomous activists and groups to change the political landscape. (more…)
Watch: Scotty travels to India to make a manhole cover
Scotty of Strange Parts took a train across India to try to make a manhole cover at a cast iron foundry. His goal was to replace an existing manhole cover on Mission Street in San Francisco with his homemade manhole cover. Even though he failed, because everyone at the foundries thought he was an industrial spy, it's fascinating to get an inside look at a small foundry in India and to meet the very nice foundry owner. Scotty also started to have second thoughts about putting a manhole of his own design on a city street.
Tiger only seems mildly perturbed to have tooth pulled
In this GIF, we see a man force open the mouth of a noncooperative tiger, then skillfully and swiftly yank out one of the tiger's teeth with a pair of pliers. The tiger is a bit surprised, but instead of killing the man on the spot, it playfully gnaws his arm.TIgEr mAuLS gUy afTEr hE tRIes tO kILl iT
The Trump Team, starring in Spy Stories for Dummies
FOLLOW @RubenBolling on the Twitters and a Face Book.JOIN Tom the Dancing Bug's subscription club, the INNER HIVE. You can also now join through Patreon!HOLIDAY GIFT-GIVING ALERT: Every kid wants Ruben Bolling’s new hit book series, The EMU Club Adventures. (”Filled with wild twists and funny dialogue” -Publishers Weekly) Book One here. Book Two here. NOW THROUGH FRIDAY, 12/8/17: Buy both books here, and you'll get them personally signed and sketched in by Ruben Bolling. More Tom the Dancing Bug comics on Boing Boing! (more…)
Watch this FPV drone pilot have fun buzzing around a train
This dizzying display of drone-piloting skills is not only impressive, but the locale is simply gorgeous. Watch as NURK FPV takes a sunset flight through a scenic river valley as a train passes through. (more…)
Time Person of the Year: The Silence Breakers
Time got it right: The Silence Breakers.She recalls one screenwriter friend telling her that Weinstein's behavior was an open secret passed around on the whisper network that had been furrowing through Hollywood for years. It allowed for people to warn others to some degree, but there was no route to stop the abuse. "Were we supposed to call some fantasy attorney general of moviedom?" Judd asks. "There wasn't a place for us to report these experiences."Finally, in October—when Judd went on the record about Weinstein's behavior in the New York Times, the first star to do so—the world listened.
Impressive photorealistic tattoos
Belgian tattoo artist Inal Bersekov does highly-detailed work that recreates famous moments from history and movies. (more…)
John Waters' favorite 10 films for 2017 include: 'Baby Driver,' 'Tom of Finland,' and 'Wonder Wheel'
At the end of each year, "filth elder" John Waters shares his top 10 favorite films in Artforum magazine. Here is his top picks for 2017: 1. Baby Driver (Edgar Wright): 2. I, Olga Hepnarová (Petr Kazda & Tomáš Weinreb);3. The Strange Ones (Christopher Radcliff & Lauren Wolkstein);4. Nocturama (Bertrand Bonello);5. Wonderstruck (Todd Haynes);6. Graduation (Christian Mungiu);7. The Wizard of Lies (Barry Levinson);8. Lady Macbeth (William Oldroyd);9. Wonder Wheel (Woody Allen);10. Tom of Finland (Dome Karukoski)Be sure to check out the full article to read his thoughts on each film. For example, here is what he had to say about Baby Driver:The best movie of the year is a popcorn thriller, an art film, and a gearhead classic that grossed over $100 million. It deserved to! Watching the star turn of Ansel Elgort was like seeing John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever for the first time.The filmmaker is currently touring the U.S. for A John Waters Christmas, his spoken-word holiday show. (Indiewire)image via Dreamland
Dan Rather: "Many things about the Age of Trump will make the stomach sicker than bad oysters"
Dan Rather has been in the news business for 70 years (how is that possible?!) and has interviewed every U.S. president since Eisenhower. So maybe he knows what he's talking about when he tells Conan O'Brian that this is a dangerous time, and that the Trump presidency is not normal (although both statements are pretty obvious). My favorite line from this interview: "Many things about the Age of Trump will make the stomach sicker than bad oysters."
These kitchen towels are cheap and good
Once a year or so I buy another dozen of these cotton kitchen towels to replace the stained ones (which go into the cleanup rags drawer). They're large (26 x 15 in.), absorbent and comfortable to use. They look really nice, too. At $11 for a dozen, they are a bargain, too.
Watch: Bruce Springsteen's doppelganger sings "Robert Mueller's Comin' to Town"
Jimmy Fallon does a great impression of Bruce Springsteen singing his parody song "Robert Mueller's Comin' to Town."
Tour of an insanely expensive supermarket in Barrow, Alaska where 1/2 a watermelon is $37
Barrow, Alaska (pop. 4,335) sits on the northernmost tip of the state. Because of its remote location, groceries are expensive -- really expensive. This friendly couple takes us on a tour of the local supermarket, which also sells hand made dresses and all terrain vehicles. A bag of Tostitos tortilla chips here are "on sale" for $10.74. A single roll of toilet paper is $2.60. A box of Froot Loops is $9.73. A gallon of milk is $10. A gallon of water is $9.59. A tomato is $4. And one half of a watermelon is $37. I'm going to watch this video again before going to Whole Foods.
Cave puzzles look like fun - here's how to solve them
Puzzle designer Fleb shows how to solve a "cave puzzle," which is a logic puzzle that reminds me a bit of sudoku. It looks fun!
Cop accused of having sex with woman while on duty keeps job, gets probation
Earlier this year Columbus Ohio police officer Randall Mayhew, a 17-year veteran, was charged with three counts of prostitution, three counts of soliciting, and one count of dereliction of duty. At least one of the woman he was accused of having sex with while in uniform said she was afraid Officer Mayhew would take her to jail. This week, according to the Columbus Dispatch, "Franklin County Municipal Court Judge Cynthia Ebner sentenced Mayhew to two years’ probation, 30 hours of community service and fined him $150 in addition to court costs. She also sentenced him to 90 days in jail, which she immediately suspended." He will keep his job. The paper also reports that Mayhew was "one of three officers who faced similar accusations in 2015."
When 25,000 little dice are agitated in a cylinder, they form into neat concentric circles
Behold the magic of compaction dynamics. Scientists from Mexico and Spain dumped 25,000 tiny dice (0.2 inches) into a large clear plastic cylinder and rotated the cylinder back and forth once a second. The dice arranged themselves into rows of concentric circles. See the paper and the videos here.Image: Asencio et al., Phys Rev Lett 2017
Well-dressed fellow rips boot off car so as not to miss his flight
Bravo, sir.(via DIGG)
Stanford rapist Brock Turner appeals sentence
Though already released from the very light sentence imposed on him by a sympathetic judge, Stanford rapist Brock Turner wants to have his verdict overturned all the same. Turner's lawyers argued in their appeal filed Friday that the initial trial was "a detailed and lengthy set of lies."They are also hoping to overturn the lifetime requirement that Turner register as a sex offender.Turner's case became a flashpoint in the debate on campus sexual assault after an impassioned victim impact statement from the accuser went viral.He served only three months of his six-month sentence. One of the high notes in the appeal is its objection to his being described in court as assaulting his victim behind a "trash bin," when it was in fact a "garbage receptacle." In either case, Turner was gotten off his victim by passers-by who then chased him down.Just before 1 a.m. on Jan. 18, 2015, Jonsson and Arndt were riding their bikes along a path near the Kappa Alpha fraternity. Jonsson told the cops that movement by a dumpster caught his eye, and he saw a guy on top of a female who was lying on her back, according to a police report.At first, Jonsson and Arndt assumed the interaction was consensual. But Jonsson said he noticed that the female wasn’t moving as he peddled by. “Something seemed weird,” he told police, because the woman appeared to be unconscious.Jonsson and Arndt approached the dumpster and yelled “Hey” to the guy who was later revealed to be Turner. He took off running, according to the police report. Jonsson realized the woman was passed out and chased after Turner, eventually catching and tripping him, the police report said.
Reasons to keep a personal journal or sketchbook
In the age of omnipresent keyboards and computers and the internet lurking behind all of them, the idea of a handwritten journal might seem quaint or pointless. But there are good reasons to keep one, writes Alan Henry.Writing can do wonders for your health. Beyond keeping your creative juices flowing—a separate topic we'll get to shortly—regular writing can give you a safe, cathartic release valve for the stresses of your daily life. We've discussed some of those mental and emotional benefits of writing before, from the angle of creative writing—but you don't have to write fiction to get them. For example, we've mentioned that keeping an awesomeness journal can do wonders for your self-esteem. Not only does regular writing make you feel good, it helps you re-live the events you experienced in a safe environment where you can process them without fear or stress.Using a brightly-lit, internetworked, general-purpose consumer computer for everything puts everything you do just a single decision away from being in the same place as everything else.So I strongly recommend a paper journal over an app, at least for those looking at journaling as a way to shake free of the spell of life spent constantly reading and writing online. Skip Moleskines, at least the expensive ones, if you're just starting out. Cheap is the freedom to experiment. You can buy a box of 25 notebooks for about $30 shipped at Amazon.com, and they're just fine. Heres a box of ruled ones. Upgrade to a nice hardbound A4 journal as a reward for getting through the first set!
Another 80s 'shame' video: A Staten Island Bar Mitzvah celebration in 1988
Remember that "shame" video of the kid getting a Nintendo as a gift in 1988? Well, my former child actor friend Jared Hirsch saw it too and shared his own "shame" video from 1998 with me. His nearly two-hour long submission captures the splendor, joy, and robot sunglasses of his Bar Mitzvah reception on Staten Island. I asked Jared if he had anything he'd like to say about the video. This is what he wrote back:In 1988, I was a 13 year old growing up in Staten Island, the curious fifth borough in New York City. As all good young Jewish kids my age, my devoted parents threw me a classic 80s Bar Mitzvah. It was like a wedding, but for horny pre- and just-turned teens. Rented hall, live band, videographer, catered dinner, dancing, games, and all the attention I craved. I remember later that night sitting on their bed, counting all of the savings bonds I was gifted for becoming a man and feeling like a thousandaire. In 10 years, I cashed them and paid for a whole month of college. Behold in all it's transferred from VHS glory, my Bar Mitzvah party. Don't miss the Bar Mitzvah rap at 1hr10min, or my relatives not understanding how a video camera works. Delight in the snazzy renditions of your favorite 70s and 80 party songs. Cringe at the hair. Laugh at me for my overinflated ego, but don't forget that you too were 13 once.
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