December 7, 2010
This year GQ magazine, a major arbiter of the cool, has anointed # "symbol of the year." GQ explains: "Hashtags have changed the way we think, communicate, process information. # is everywhere." What we have here is one of the great comeback stories in the history of competitive punctuation. Today, &, © and ® have been left in the dust (of course@retains its status in email).
The Department of Homeland Security and Wal-Mart have announced a partnership to promote the recent "If You See Something, Say Something" campaign, which urges citizens to report "suspicious activity." At select locations, a brief DHS video message will urge shoppers to "contact local law enforcement" if they see anything out of the ordinary. Over 230 stores began playing these short videos Monday, with another 588 stores in 27 states to come on-board in the next few weeks. [more inside]
One of the biggest challenges you're going to face in your life is how to fold a fitted sheet.
Elizabeth Edwards has died of breast cancer. She was an attorney, author, and advocate for same-sex marriage rights. [more inside]
WitStream is your 24-hour live comedy ticker. An endless flow of up-to-the-minute comedy and commentary delivered to you in real time. [more inside]
"In six days every single living cell in the world will die. You have one chance to save the world."
"In six days every single living cell in the world will die. You have one chance to save the world." This is a short adventure game. Use arrow keys to move around and the space bar to interact. If you want to play this, avoid reading the thread. You do not want it spoiled. It is not a twisty game, but in this journey it is better to not know what lies ahead.
Corexit [Bing cache] is mostly what BP has used on the spill. There are a few things to know about Corexit. One is that is was banned in U.K. over ten years ago because it is so toxic, as in poisonous to humans and sea life. ... Corexit was also used on the Exxon Valdez spill. Now read carefully: Almost all the clean up workers who worked on the Exxon Valdez spill are dead. (previously)
If you enjoy the sublime beauty of woodcut prints, you'll be in heaven when you check out The Society of Wood Engravers online Gallery of Annual Exhibitions (4 years running!). Examine the individual engravings that make up the Millenium Ark. A short explanation of "What is wood engraving?" and the Process for your edification. Video: Woodcut printing 1450-1520. Also checkout artistandy's YT channel for more engraving videos.
More than 80% of old film has been lost forever. But that which remains - including a heavily restored long tracking shot of Dunkirk from a tramway in 1913, London in 1955, and Prague in 1947 - are incredibly evocative of history. Much more at Europa Film Treasures and the Huntley Film Archives. [more inside]
Rabbi Rami Shapiro is a self-described holy rascal, with an often sarcastic twitter feed. His blog, Beyond Religion, has covered a wide variety of issues, both spiritual and political, from descriptions of God, the relationship between religion and science, the reality of Christian law, and the role of women in Israel. In today's post, he defines and defends the role of myth in religion: “Myth” is not the same as “falsehood.” Myth is a narrative structure used to convey some of the deepest truths we humans can glean. Myths are not believed in but unpacked and lived."
Fiction is more than an entertainment, more than an intellectual exercise that sharpens one’s sensibility and awakens a critical spirit. It is an absolute necessity so that civilization continues to exist, renewing and preserving in us the best of what is human. [PDF] [more inside]
Die2Nite is a free co-op zombie game for your browser. "Your character gets dropped into a village with 40 other players from your time zone, and your group objective is to survive." They just announced open registration.
In honor of it's 100th anniversary, the Boy Scouts of America is offering 4 original merit badges that were offered 99 years ago: Carpentry (pdf of original pamphlet), Signaling (pdf of original pamphlet), Pathfinding (pdf of original pamphlet), and Tracking (pdf of original pamphlet). [more inside]
This is the Japanese spy who was stationed in Hawaii early in 1941. Here's how scouted the islands in preparation for the attack. These are his memories (Flash interface).
For more than one hundred years, the Guild of Bookworkers has been judging books by some pretty amazing covers.
A longitudinal study to be published in Jan 2011's Pediatrics (abstract, PDF of article) shows that GLBT youth are about 40 percent more likely to be punished by schools, police, and courts than their straight peers. [more inside]
The attack on Pearl Harbor was neither the U.S.' first armed conflict leading to WW II, nor the last Axis attack on American soil. [more inside]
Desaturated Santa. Brody Qat uses a gray santa suit, contact lenses, and makeup to stand out in a crowd of Santas (previously). She explains here. More pics. Via Neatorama.
Who was Eddie Klep? Everybody knows about the black man who integrated the major leagues in 1947, but hardly anyone knows about the white man who integrated the Negro Leagues the year before. Eddie Klep was no role model, but he deserves to be remembered, and Chuck Brodsky (who's written a bunch of baseball songs) did his part with the "Ballad of Eddie Klepp" (YouTube, lyrics). The name actually has just one p; Brodsky regrets the error (which is also made in this short piece, with lively quotes from Klep's wife). (Thanks, Ken!)
All of Billy Joel's Greatest Hits... played at once.
Julian Assange has been arrested after turning himself in in london. He has been refused bail by the court and has been remanded to custody until at least the 14th of December. Assange is wanted for questioning in Sweden on charges that he committed an offense called "Sex by surprise." He has vowed to fight extradition.
"I was really excited to get the chance to finally meet these pandas, but when I asked to see them, I was told (after a lengthy pause) that they had grown too big, and her mum had sent them back to the zoo only the week before." Billy Bullshit celebrates the tall tales that we all pretend to swallow until the teller is well out of earshot.
Photos from the Los Angeles Times Archives from Shirley Temple to Arnold Schwarzenegger.
This documentary is the story of two Mennonite brothers from Manitoba who were forced to make a decision in 1939, as Canada joined World War II. In the face of 400 years of pacifist tradition, should they now go to war? Ted became a conscientious objector while his brother went into military service. Fifty years later, the town of Winkler dedicates its first war memorial and John begins to share his war experiences with Ted. [more inside]
Whisperlude, a new song based on Alfonso Cuarón’s 1995 Academy Award-nominated retelling of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A Little Princess. (from Pogo, a Metafilter favorite previously posted here, here, and here)