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December 2, 2011
Find the Spam
Here is an artifact of the old internet: "Somewhere in the picture below we have cleverly hidden a can of spam.  If you think you've found the spam, click on it to find out if you're right.  You probably don't think there is any spam in the picture, but look closely.  Most people only find the spam after staring intently at the picture for several hours.
"Good luck and find that spam!" [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 9:56 PM PST - 73 comments

Goats Up In Smoke
This years Gavle Goat has already been set ablaze. The Gävle Goat was mentioned on the blue a few years ago. The Gävle Goat is a 13-meter (42+ feet) tall straw structure that’s built in the center of Gävle, Sweden at Christmastime every year. And every year somebody has tried to burn this giant Yuletide Goat to the ground. Often successfully. Well, it happened again today at 2:54 am. This year there is film of the fire as well as a live webcam of its charred remains.
posted by hubs at 9:41 PM PST - 24 comments

In 3D!
First 3D movie of orgasm in the female brain. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 7:42 PM PST - 55 comments

John Zorn's "Spillane"
Using his "file card" technique to create the title piece "Spillane" (whereby musical ideas written on note cards form the basis for discreet sound blocks arranged by way of a unifying theme), John Zorn forges an impressionistic narrative out of stretches of live-music jazz, blues, country, lounge, thrash, etc., and a variety of samples and spoken dialogue inspired by Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer detective novels (recited by John Lurie). - AllMusic [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:28 PM PST - 7 comments

Don’t Give Up . . . Don’t Ever Give Up!
Jim Valvano and 6th seeded North Carolina State completed one of the all time greatest Cinderella upsets in basketball history, winning the 1983 NCAA tournament title over the top ranked "Phi Slamma Jamma" out of Houston, featuring two future Hall of Fame and Top 50 all time NBA superstars Clyde Drexler and Hakeem Olajuwon. On March 3, 1993, shortly before his death from bone cancer diagnosed the previous year, Jimmy V delivered an iconic speech at the inaugural ESPY awards announcing the creation of The Jimmy V Foundation, an organization dedicated to finding a cure for cancer. Jimmy V week is celebrated each year on ESPN and has since raised over $100 million for cancer research.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:06 PM PST - 14 comments

Occupy Jazz!
Trumpet player Nicholas Payton, aka @paynic on Twitter, recently posted a highly poetic essay (or highly essay-like poem) entitled On Why Jazz Isn't Cool Any More. [more inside]
posted by motty at 5:53 PM PST - 47 comments

Life After Death
"The best way I can describe our predicament to someone outside our culture is to call up the sensation of orgasm. You lose control of your destiny, and you are grateful for the loss. Time dissolves. Nothing that came before matters. You lose all sense of consequences and would sacrifice anything to safeguard the moment. Then, just seconds later, the blighted past and an uncertain future rush back in to drown you." Michael Harris writes in Walrus Magazine about coming of age in the long shadow of the AIDS epidemic. via utne. [more inside]
posted by jquinby at 5:48 PM PST - 14 comments

Sun Microsystems?
The House of the Rising Sun, on old Computer Equipment
posted by rusty at 5:12 PM PST - 27 comments

"Perfect Storm" Lobster Tags found 20 years later
Perfect Storm lobster tags wash up 3000 miles and 20 years later. Here's the US version of the story. Ocean currents hero Curt Ebbesmeyer (previously), "studier of flotsam," believes the tags were likely stuck in mud, then meandered around the Atlantic until arriving last year in Waterville, County Kerry, Ireland. There is a monument to the lives of fisherman lost in Gloucester and includes over 10,000 names dating back to 1716, including those from the Andrea Gail.
posted by eggman at 4:42 PM PST - 31 comments

Just relax a little bit.
Need a hug? Take a visit to the nicest place on the internet.
posted by to sir with millipedes at 4:12 PM PST - 69 comments

And this is how you die
How do people die in motor "accidents"? I'll tell you. With the Christmas "Silly Season" is upon us, the Age has republished And this is how you die by journalist Roger Aldridge. A warning - it's pretty graphic. Scroll up for the rest of the article.
posted by mattoxic at 4:02 PM PST - 95 comments

The Score With The Dragon Tattoo
Hot on the heels of winning both the Golden Globe and the Oscar for Best Score in 2010 for their work on The Social Network, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross have announced the release of the score for the upcoming David Fincher film, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. The 39-track, three-disk set can be purchased for a surprisingly affordable $14 (as opposed to Amazon's current price of $20) and comes with a digital download of the album. Other versions are also available, including a $300 "Deluxe" set which includes six vinyl records and will be signed by Reznor and Ross. A six-track sampler of the album is available for free download at the Null Co page (email address required). [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 3:17 PM PST - 48 comments

Escaping the death trap.
Submarine escape: A WWII survival tale. 'Seventy years ago, off the Greek island of Kefalonia, the British submarine HMS Perseus hit an Italian mine, sparking one of the greatest and most controversial survival stories of World War II.' 'Despite being awarded a medal for his escape, John Capes's story was so extraordinary that many people, both within and outside the Navy, doubted it.' He 'died in 1985 but it was not until 1997 that his story was finally verified.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 2:37 PM PST - 9 comments

It was Once Much Easier to inhabit public space.
Seeing so many Occupiers getting evicted made me think of this short 1988 documentary by Nancy Kalow on homeless squatter punk teens in the Bay Area (warning:cringe-inducing rapping in the opening scene). From their stories, it seems as if they had free reign of the abandoned Berkeley Polytech building for a while. Readers of Cometbus who aren't from the Bay Area can see a bit of the scene he made sound so attractive. 1993 sequel, The Losers Club.
posted by shushufindi at 2:14 PM PST - 5 comments

Women for Herman Cain
Beleaguered U.S. Presidential candidate Herman Cain's campaign has created a feature on their website entitled "Women for Herman Cain" (or just "Women for Cain" in some places) where women can post their support for him in the form of text testimonials and videos. Jezebel snarks, Palin sympathizes, and Mediaite observes that the first version of the site prominently featured a stock photo of four women with their thumbs up in approval.
posted by aught at 1:58 PM PST - 143 comments

Assorted Street Posters
This collection of street posters, mad scribblings, political screeds, religious rants, and paranoid raves was collected on the streets of New York City from 1985 to the present. Some time ago, it occurred to me that the streets are as full of art as, say, thrift shops are full of great paintings. So, inspired by Jim Shaw's collection Thrift Shop Paintings, Adolf Wölfli's visionary scrawls, and outsider music, I began carrying a portable razor with me whilst out on casual strolls. What began as a hobby has remained an obsession and this obsession is brought to you in living color here on UbuWeb. Keep checking back as this page is constantly updated. I have hundreds of examples to share with you, as as time permits, they'll all eventually appear here. -- Kenneth Goldsmith, Assorted Street Posters
posted by beshtya at 1:04 PM PST - 14 comments

Most of his noteworthy accomplishments happened in said middle part
A life well remembered: a quirky obituary endears a Connecticut professor to a new audience
posted by Frank Grimes at 12:56 PM PST - 20 comments

86 DST?
Daylight Saving Time Explained - It is time to abolish DST? Russia did, and some Alaskans want to, while Indiana recently got on board (despite evidence that DST doesn't save energy), and Hawaii and Arizona just laugh. (previously (and more recently previously))
posted by mrgrimm at 12:38 PM PST - 105 comments

Trapped In China?
Anticipating a season long lockout, several NBA players signed contracts with teams in the Chinese Basketball Association. Now that a labor deal has been reached, leaving for the NBA won't be easy.
posted by reenum at 12:04 PM PST - 25 comments

Liefeldian Thigh Pouches
"...they essentially published years of comics for the sole purpose of saying 'Fine, that's how you want it? Here you go. Enjoy.' They made a character out of pure sarcasm, and he had his own ongoing series for a hundred issues."
Chris Sims on Azrael.
posted by griphus at 11:55 AM PST - 28 comments

Paint your own Dreamliner
Boeing's got a new web app up that allows you to paint your own Dreamliner. They've also got a pretty cool gallery up of all the pretty (and not so pretty) 787s people have dreamed (sigh) up.
posted by kjars at 11:33 AM PST - 20 comments

The S-T period to the I-D-E to the S!
In 1991, Ice Cube was a force of nature. The idea that he could someday star in Are We There Yet? was inconceivable. Still, commercialism wasn't foreign to him. He shilled St. Ides malt liquor as furiously as he called out the police.
St. Ides, manufactured by Pabst Brewing Company, targeted young black people. They built an advertising strategy around rappers and hired DJ Pooh to produce beats and commercials. Rappers responded with zeal. [more inside]
posted by ignignokt at 11:05 AM PST - 83 comments

Never talk to a Style reporter!
Gawker: How the NYT Style section trolls their readers.
posted by The Whelk at 9:46 AM PST - 69 comments

All Hail King Zog!
Leka I Zogu died November 30, 2011 at the age of 72. When he was less than 48 hours old, Mussolini's troops invaded Albania and drove out his father, King Zog I of Albania, and the rest of the royal family. He spent the rest of his life fleeing invading armies, stockpiling weaponry, trading commodities, attempting coups, returning to Albania (three times), and eventually settling into a quiet life in the very country where he refused to relenquish his claims to the throne. [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:12 AM PST - 39 comments

We got some right, some not so right.
"They may well do it." [The Guardian] Sir Arthur C Clarke predicted in a lost BBC interview that the Russians would win the space race by landing the first man on the moon in 1968, probably on the 50th anniversary of the October Revolution. Arthur C Clarke on The Sky at Night – video.
posted by Fizz at 8:32 AM PST - 38 comments

"We were originally from Trenton, and I performed at a lot of PTA functions."
Jonathan and Darlene Edwards were a musical duo famous (or infamous) for their off-key but spirited interpretations of such classics as Tiptoe through the Tulips and I Am Woman. [more inside]
posted by usonian at 8:14 AM PST - 25 comments

Careers, Parents, and the 1%
Your parents have a huge influence on your future career. A single chart from the Journal of Labor Economics shows how much the top 1% benefit from their parent's success and networks (Results are from Canada, but the same is observed elsewhere). Nepotism is a very common phenomenon, and explains part of why income mobility between generations can be such a problem. Beyond the importance of parental networks and money, however, there is evidence that our genes influence our career choices, including whether you become an entrepreneur.
posted by blahblahblah at 7:26 AM PST - 71 comments

The Arctic is failing.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released its 2011 Arctic Report Card. Persistent warming has caused dramatic changes in the Arctic Ocean and the ecosystem it supports. Ocean changes include reduced sea ice and freshening of the upper ocean, and impacts such as increased biological productivity at the base of the food chain and loss of habit for walrus and polar bears. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 7:17 AM PST - 25 comments

Yogurt!
This baby loves yogurt. via
posted by Deathalicious at 7:06 AM PST - 40 comments

Evolution and the Illusion of randomness.
Evolution and the Illusion of randomness. (By Steve Talbott at netfuture.org)
posted by seanyboy at 6:41 AM PST - 44 comments

People keep calling me Five Alive
In DSM 5- 'Living Document' or 'Dead on Arrival', Allen Frances, chair of the DSM-IV development committee details some of the problems with the DSM-5 development process and alludes to some of the current controversies. The post is part of his ongoing series DSM-5 In Distress. [more inside]
posted by OmieWise at 6:17 AM PST - 37 comments

I am Joe's FPP
"I am Your Body"
posted by infini at 5:57 AM PST - 21 comments

Apollo 15, The notable and not so notable firsts
Designed as "an expeditionary force for a geologic assault1" on the Moon’s Hadley Rille, Apollo 15 was a groundbreaking lunar mission. Designed to be devoted entirely to scientific exploration, it included a number of notable firsts: first to land outside of the lunar mare; first 3 day stay on the moon; first use of the Lunar Rover by Commander David Scott and Lunar Module Pilot Jim Irwin; first use of the Scientific Instrument Module, used by Command Module Pilot Al Worden to study the moon from lunar orbit; and first launch of a subsatellite, used to map the plasma, particle and magnetic fields of the moon. On top of that, Scott gave a visual proof of Galileo's theory of objects in gravity fields in a vacuum, showing gravity acts equally on all objects regardless of their mass. Scott and Irwin also discovered of the Genesis Rock, a piece the moon's primordial crust, formed only 100 million years after the solar system itself.

The mission was a spectacular success, publicly called "One of the most brilliant missions in space science ever flown". The crew was lauded and their future with NASA seemed assured.

Then the stamps hit the fan and Apollo 15 became the first US space crew that was ever fired. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:28 AM PST - 61 comments

A Critic at the Occupation
The New Yorker's music critic Alex Ross was at Lincoln Center last night to hear a Mahler symphony -- until NYPD officers shooed him out of Josie Robertson Plaza, a public space. The MacArthur Fellow stayed behind to observe an Occupy Wall Street action timed to coincide with the final performance of Philip Glass's Satyragraha at the Metropolitan Opera. The composer himself came out of the Met to join the action, reading via human microphone from the libretto of this opera about Mahatma Gandhi's activism in South Africa. Both the moving speech and the spectacle of operagoers herded out of Lincoln Center by armed police are documented by Ross on his blog The Rest is Noise.
posted by La Cieca at 5:26 AM PST - 25 comments

Canadian Professor named Italian Junior Minister of Agriculture... then not.
In "a comedy of errors", a professor of business at Canada's University of Guelph was accidentally named the Junior Minister of Agriculture for Italy. An interview with Professor Francesco Braga tells the confusing story. It turns out the Prime Minister's office had meant to name Professor Franco Braga, of Sapienza – Università di Roma, to the post.
posted by knile at 5:14 AM PST - 12 comments

The DFW Archive Updates
David Foster Wallace's collected books and papers found a home at The Harry Ransom Center at The University of Texas at Austin. While you need to book an appointment if you want to see the entire collection, further portions are now available online including: annotations of his Pale King manuscript, a catalog of almost 300 of the books from his shelves, and his inspirational, hilarious, unconventional teaching materials. [more inside]
posted by roofus at 3:46 AM PST - 17 comments

Anders Breivik: cold and calculating, yes – but insane?
Anders Breivik: cold and calculating, yes – but insane? Breivik probably has a pyschopath's lack of affective empathy. But that alone cannot explain his terrible cruelty. Interesting article in the Guardian by Simon Baron-Cohen.
posted by joost de vries at 2:30 AM PST - 68 comments

Where Libraries Went Wrong
Where Libraries Went Wrong; a great blog post / article diving deep into some of the issues that face public libraries today. It's centred on UK libraries, but deals with issues facing public knowledge bases everywhere.
posted by ChrisR at 1:04 AM PST - 28 comments