October 13, 2010
If a car dealership makes less than $30 million per year or has less than 200 employees - help is on the way!
...in this life we have to take things as we find them as the torso murderer said when he discovered his victim was a quadruple amputee. Oliver Harris on Re-Editing William S. Burroughs' First Trilogy
Danakil Desert ; 1938 - Dinner from the sky "Italians love their food. And they love it fresh. You know this. What you might not know, though, is the lengths they will go to in order to enjoy a fine dining experience."
The Chicago Tribune, which has been having a few problems of its own (previously), has a grimly fascinating continuing feature called Mugs in the News in which people’s mug shots are linked to stories describing their alleged crimes. Photos are numbered and accessed from main page (no direct links, alas). Man drunk and texting, four children in car (7). Chicago politician (5). Aggravated child pornography (9). Child molesters (17,18,22). Happy teacher (21). Ninja shoplifter (23). Bad Buddhist (113). Aggravated battery of a police officer, attempted aggravated assault of a police officer, resisting a police officer, driving under the influence of drugs, reckless driving, failing to reduce speed, improper traffic lane usage, disregarding a traffic control light and disregarding a stop sign (12). Other MetaFilter Mugshots (previously 1 2).
Kate Bolick tells a story of Facebook voyeurism.
Two minutes of worlds colliding: Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers' Roadrunner and Egyptian Reggae, as interpreted by house dance troupe Legs & Co. on Top of the Pops.
Richard Grayson is a (now retired) composer and classical improviser. To give you just a taste, Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries" in the style of a Tango, "Heart and Soul" a la Mahler, "Take the A Train" as a Chopin Funeral March.
"I started collecting found snapshots a few years ago — at swap meets, antique shops and the like — but the thing that got me started wasn’t the photos themselves so much as the writing I’d sometimes find on the backs."
In Gitmo Opinion, Two Versions of Reality. "When Judge Henry Kennedy Jr. ordered the release of a Guantánamo Bay detainee last spring, the case appeared to be a routine setback for an Obama administration that has lost a string of such cases. But there turns out to be nothing ordinary about the habeas case brought by Uthman Abdul Rahim Mohammed Uthman, a Yemeni held without charges for nearly eight years. Uthman, accused by two U.S. administrations of being an al-Qaida fighter and bodyguard for Osama bin Laden, is among 48 detainees the Obama administration has deemed too dangerous to release but 'not feasible for prosecution.' A day after his March 16 order was filed on the court's electronic docket, Kennedy's opinion vanished. Weeks later, a new ruling appeared in its place. While it reached the same conclusion, eight pages of material had been removed, including key passages in which Kennedy dismantled the government's case against Uthman."
The Best American Essays, 2010, edited by Christopher Hitchens. Many of the essays can be found online: [more inside]
Fort Worth city councilman Joel Burns shares his own anti-LGBT bullying story before Fort Worth city council this past Tuesday. [via Victory Fund] This is yet another successful video of Dan Savage's It Gets Better campaign. [previously]
Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s latest installation: one hundred million hand-painted pieces of porcelain that resemble the shells of sunflower seeds.
Ask the atheist "Have a question for an atheist? Ever wonder what atheists think about morality, faith, science, etc.? How do atheists live their lives without a god? How do they know right from wrong? Are they just angry at god? Do they really NOT believe?" [more inside]
"This just blew my mind out of my nose and onto my keyboard." A spectacular show of 3D mapping light projections on 3D surfaces at the last Mobile World Congress presented by Alcatel-Lucent. Originally found via this blog:
Stunning video of the 600th anniversary (11.10.02010) celebration for Prague's Astronomical Clock [SLYT]
What if the Tea Party was Black? Jasiri X raps about radicalism and racism. Inflammatory and simplistic, maybe, but the best rap polemic since George Bush Doesn't Care About Black People. Jasiri X responds to critics here.
"Voice of San Diego reporter Adrian Florido set out to find a family, he writes, "whose experience could illustrate the day-to-day challenge for Burmese refugees" in San Diego, since "more than 200 Burmese families have arrived [in that city] since 2006." In the process, Florido met a 24-year-old man named Har Sin" who was unable to hear, speak, read, write or use sign language, and wound up writing a two-part story about him: In a New Land, Hoping to Hear and Breaking Free of a Life Without Language. The story is available as a downloadable pdf: A Silent Journey Series. / Via The Kicker, the daily blog of the Columbia Journalism Review [more inside]
McDonalds may have the worst burgers, but they have (visual) durability on their side, remaining consistent in appearance over 180 days on a shelf. McDonalds doesn't trust the images, according to a comment sent to The Upshot, though review by Salon finds that preservatives may not be necessary. With all this, the 180 day old Happy Meal has nothing on the hamburger from 1996, which remained unfrozen yet mold-free through 2008, or the 30 year old Twinkie that survived, unwrapped, on a shelf in Roger Bennatti's high school science class. [more inside]
The biggest literary influence on my approach to game design, however, was one of the writers I worshipped as a teenager: Alice Sheldon, aka James Tiptree, Jr. Tiptree had one particular recommendation for starting a story: “Start from the end and preferably 5,000 feet underground on a dark day and then don’t tell them.” This is precisely how we begin Half-Life. It was a deliberate antidote to the many game openings that involved pages and pages of backstory presented in scrolling text. - An interview with Marc Laidlaw, writer for the Half Life series.
It has been a dramatic start of the season for Liverpool Football Club both on and off the pitch. [more inside]
Today is the day that extraterrestrials make contact with Earth! According to a retired NORAD officer who has studied alien phenomenon since WW2, a fleet of UFOs will perform a massive display for hours over the world's principal cities today, the first step in mankind's acceptance of alien existence. Drawing upon his military experience and a wealth of historical data from NORAD intelligence, Stanley Fulham has concluded in his recently published book, Challenges of Change, that October 13, 2010 is the date of first contact. Although they won't land or communicate today (so as not to cause a worldwide panic), the aliens come with the benevolent intention of saving humans from ecological disaster. Hoopy froods should know where their towels are.