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February 13, 2012
be mine
So many (free, online) ways to celebrate (or not) Valentine's Day: a declaration of romantic intent - 14 ways an economist says "I love you" - [more inside]
posted by flex at 11:38 PM PST - 28 comments

Nevermore?
Nevermore? The crows in Rochester, NY are being evicted. The City is attempting to scare off the local roost of over 20,000 birds using pyrotechnics, amplified distress calls, and laser shows. Other cities in the region are taking even more drastic measures.
posted by Jesse Hughson at 10:12 PM PST - 87 comments

Kuang Grade Mark Eleven
He leaves his cellphone and laptop at home and instead brings "loaner" devices, which he erases before he leaves the US and wipes clean the minute he returns . In China, he disables Bluetooth and Wi-Fi , never lets his phone out of his sight and, in meetings, not only turns off his phone but also removes the battery , for fear his microphone could be turned on remotely. He connects to the Internet only through an encrypted, password-protected channel, and copies and pastes his password from a USB thumb drive. He never types in a password directly, because, he said, "Chinese are very good at installing key-logging software on your laptop." - Travel precautions in the age of digital espionage.
posted by Artw at 9:06 PM PST - 125 comments

Stephen Vizinczey's "In Praise of Older Women"
In Praise of Older Women was condemned by some as some as pornography. In spite or perhaps because of that, it was a phenomenal seller. There is nothing pornographic about it. It is a beautiful and tender book, the semi-autobiographical tale of the amorous adventures of a young man who learns much, not only in matters of sex, from older women. It is a primer for men on the threshold of adulthood and a paean of elegant praise for older women. Unlike many male writers who write about women, there is no fear or hatred. In Praise of Older Women is warm and wise.*
posted by Trurl at 7:25 PM PST - 35 comments

"Pure Cinema"
Человек с киноаппаратом ("Man with a Movie Camera") is a classic experimental documentary film that was released in 1929. Directed by pioneer Soviet filmmaker Dziga Vertov, this classic, silent documentary film has no story and no actors, and is actually three documentaries in one. Ostensibly it documents 24 hours of life in a single city in the Soviet Union. But it is also a documentary of the filming of that documentary and a depiction of an audience watching that documentary and their responses. "We see the cameraman and the editing of the film, but what we don't see is any of the film itself." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:18 PM PST - 26 comments

Lil' Giants Construction Company
Since the Spring of 1997, Joe and the Lil' Giants Construction Company have been excavating his basement, one truck load at a time. Joe uses Wedico, Tamiya and Stahl RC trucks, bulldozers, excavators and a dirt lump crusher to build, remove, repair and sculpt his basement. You can follow Joe and his progress here and on his youtube channel.
posted by lilkeith07 at 7:03 PM PST - 36 comments

Zahra's Paradise
So a Persian writer, an Arab artist and a Jewish editor walk into a room…
Zahra's Paradise is a webcomic inspired by the work of the late Zahra Kazemi (previously) and based on reports by Iranian bloggers. The author and publisher describe their experiences here.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:22 PM PST - 6 comments

'Cause she loves the classics....and they're pretty dirty.
Poet and Educational Consultant Mark Grist - Girls who read.
posted by lazaruslong at 6:10 PM PST - 22 comments

Mr. Happy Man
Every workday morning Johnny Barnes has greeted Bermudians just to let them know how much he loved them. And after many years they love him right back. It's a simple story about the power one man has to make other people happy. Meet Mr. Happy Man. (Vimeo Link.)
posted by elwoodwiles at 2:51 PM PST - 19 comments

Whales for Sale II
A whale of a tale. On Sunday, a jet-ski activist of Paul Watson's Sea Shepard gang (Eco-Pirate: The Story of Paul Watson Documentary) was water-cannoned into the Antartic by a Japanese scouter boat during filming of Whale Wars. The ICR presents a different side to Paul Watson as evidenced by their regular press releases. Greenpeace believes Paul Watson is an extremist.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 2:37 PM PST - 202 comments

It's a Beauty!
Looking for Don Cherry's playlist, you say? No problem, eh. The Mother Corporation's brand new digital audio service has been launched by the CBC today, and is available here.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 2:07 PM PST - 37 comments

"Conceptual art is good only when the idea is good."
How the computer will save poetry.
posted by Fizz at 1:53 PM PST - 40 comments

CPAC/Occupy Beer summit
Tea Partiers and Occupiers meet over beer. There's been much discussion about what the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street many, or may not, have in common. At CPAC (the Conservative Political Action Conference) a CPAC attendee interrupts an argument between another CPAC attendee and an Occupier to tell the CPACer how much they have in common. He then invites some Occupiers to join him at a local pub, where they have been talking for hours. This video shows some of that meeting. [more inside]
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 1:40 PM PST - 47 comments

Yo Lady G, wassup?
The makers of Downton Abbey take great care to recreate the look and feel of the period in which it is set. But occasionally anachronisms in the dialogue slip through.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 11:31 AM PST - 125 comments

The seedy underbelly of the internet.
The "visible web" is what you can find using general web search engines. It's also what you see in almost all subject directories. The "invisible web" is what you cannot find using these types of tools. It's the internet that Google doesn't show us; some of it dull, some of it private, some of it deliberately hidden.

More beneath the surface. [more inside]
posted by Stagger Lee at 11:07 AM PST - 71 comments

"I thought others might appreciate these tidbits of forgotten history"
On Flickr, vieilles_annonces posts scans from her "rather large magazine collection of Ebony, Jet and similar magazines from the 1910s on." [more inside]
posted by EvaDestruction at 11:04 AM PST - 3 comments

Come Play With Us Danny
Grossinger's Hotel used to be one of the most popular resorts in the Catskill region of New York State. The resort served as a playing ground for the famous stars of the time like Elizabeth Taylor and Jackie Robinson. But, like most things, its popularity faded and by 1986 it closed its doors forever. It has remained abandoned ever since. (Buzzfeed, Now and Then photos)
posted by The Whelk at 10:16 AM PST - 30 comments

Second Coming
Stone Roses, Trainspotting and the grunge look: the 90s revival is here (previous)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:16 AM PST - 211 comments

Does Football have a future? Or, perhaps, should Football have a future?
Does Football have a Future?: Football players are anywhere from five to nineteen times more likely than a member of the general population to suffer from a dementia-like illness. This is likely a result of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (picture), neurodegeneration caused by receiving multiple concussions or even subconcussions that are not detectable around time of impact. CTE has been linked to other mood and behavior changes, including suicidal depression (a great review of the medical literature generally), and has been found in football players as young as 21. And, of course, there is the sometimes debilitating physical disability (either acutely or later in life) from playing a hard-contact sport. The NFL has a long history of adjusting safety standards in bits and pieces (e.g., legalization of the forward pass) to meet public concern over potential injury and disability from playing the sport, though still to some degree publicly denies a connection between football and brain damage. New Yorker writer Ben McGrath talks to football players (past and present), their families (often left behind by untimely death or dementia-twilight), franchise heads, and doctors to explore this history, the crushing legacy of sports injuries, and the question of whether it is possible to reform the rules to minimize the risk of concussion and thus the risk of CTE (if any such risk is acceptable). Would it still be football if such changes were to tone down the violence? (Yes, No [from iconoclast Buzz Bissinger]) And, uncomfortably: is the sport of football unethical for its players, even if entered into on their own volition? (previously in the New Yorker; previously on MetaFilter 1, 2, 3) [more inside]
posted by Keter at 9:52 AM PST - 117 comments

Yours To Rediscover
RETRONTARIO: Yours To Rediscover. "RETRONTARIO was created to celebrate the neglected corners of Ontario’s rich televisual history; to put back into circulation material which rightly or wrongly had fallen into a black hole and was for all intents and purposes, lost."
posted by chunking express at 8:31 AM PST - 23 comments

"MY WAVE!"
LearnLiberty: a libertarian Khan Academy. [more inside]
posted by edguardo at 7:46 AM PST - 183 comments

The Misunderstood Power of Michael Jackson's Music
The Atlantic explores whether Michael Jackson's contributions, like those of other black artists, are minimized because of his skin color.
posted by reenum at 7:41 AM PST - 216 comments

Surreal Adventures
LACMA is currently hosting "In Wonderland", a retrospective of Surrealist art by female artists from Mexico and the United States.  This is a great chance to check out some under-appreciated artists, who were often overshadowed by their male counterparts. [more inside]
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 7:36 AM PST - 5 comments

Sometimes love is best expressed with something sticky
Paper flowers are lovely, but if you are feeling crafty and want to make your loved one something a bit different this Valentine's Day, why not make them some Realistic Duct-Tape Roses? [via]
posted by quin at 7:34 AM PST - 15 comments

The Science is on a Need-to-know Basis, and You Don't Need to Know
The committee took the unprecedented step of recommending that some details of these biological studies [be] kept from the public, so that no one could use them as recipes for new bioweapons. [more inside]
posted by gauche at 7:26 AM PST - 30 comments

Writer To Writer: Burroughs VS Acker
On the advent of deceased author William S. Burroughs' first gallery showing in England, equally deceased author Kathy Acker sat down to interview him. Collected by weirdo website 'The End Of Being' in 3 filmed parts. [more inside]
posted by artof.mulata at 6:42 AM PST - 6 comments

FDR at Harvard
Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a Harvard man through and through.
"From 1900-1904, young Franklin Delano Roosevelt, with his Groton chum Lathrop Brown, rented rooms in Westmorly Court, (now B-17 of Adams House) the newest and most luxurious building on Harvard's Gold Coast. Equipped with all the latest innovations – central heat, electricity, a modern "hygienic" bathroom – the suite contained over 600 sq. feet of living space spread over 4 rooms, with 14' ceilings, French doors, and a working fireplace. These spacious quarters, which were originally decorated in high Victorian style by FDR and his mother Sara have been recently restored to their pristine Gilded Age condition... [more inside]
posted by vacapinta at 5:11 AM PST - 13 comments

Dear Mr. Wright
In 1956 a 12-year-old Jim Berger exchanged letters with Frank Lloyd Wright. The result was a Wright designed doghouse.
posted by IvoShandor at 2:31 AM PST - 24 comments

The Fifty
It towers 51 feet high, extending a further 36 feet below ground. It weighs approximately 16 million pounds. And it's capable of delivering 50,000 metric tons of compressive force. "The Fifty" is the largest hydraulic closed-die forging press in the world. Chances are, you've interacted with something built in part by The Fifty: every flying manned U.S. military aircraft (and every aircraft built by Boeing and Airbus) uses parts forged by it. Built in 1955, the press has recently completed a $100 million refurb, and is now back online in Alcoa's Cleveland Works facility. [more inside]
posted by disillusioned at 1:09 AM PST - 79 comments