This morning, the New York Times published "Wrought in Their Creator’s Image
", an article talking about the new network series “How to Get Away With Murder", produced by Shonda Rimes
and starring Viola Davis. The articles claims about the beauty and character of Black women have created a discussion, from Rimes herself
and others about the stereotype of the "angry Black woman
" and whether Ms. Davis is, as the Times suggests #lessclassicallybeautiful
than other women because of the age and color of her skin.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:35 AM - 31 comments
Parks and Recreation
's Aubrey Plaza has just been named as the voice of Grumpy Cat
in the upcoming movie Grumpy Cat's Worst Christmas Ever
. This is not the first time Plaza's acted in an Internet meme turned movie: she was in Safety Not Guaranteed
(based on a personal ad hiring a time-travelling assistant
as well as CollegeHumour's fake Daria trailer (prev)
. Will it do better than The Slender Man
or Snakes on a Plane
posted by divabat at 10:32 AM - 35 comments
"This is a column about Katie Ledecky.
It has a simple thesis. The thesis is that Katie Ledecky kicks ass."
posted by troika at 10:07 AM - 13 comments
Circular Confabulation: [Vimeo]
"A collection of diverse artifacts gathered in the forest, each one is representing a person who participated in the 2008 Bilderberg meeting at the Westfields Marriott in Chantilly, Virginia, United States. The topic at that specific meeting was cyber terrorism. It was recorded by an anonymous security guard and then encrypted."
posted by Fizz at 9:22 AM - 12 comments
Former President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili is now living in Williamsburg.
When he's not plotting a return to power (charges
of corruption and human rights violations in his home country notwithstanding), he is trying to live a "normal life" in the neighborhood synonymous with hipsters and Hasids. [more inside]
posted by Cash4Lead at 9:11 AM - 14 comments
What do you do with a vintage synth keyboard collection but not enough ways to make use of them all? Well, if you're Graham Massey, and you stumbled across the forgotten history of Women's Organ Quartets who might have overwhelmed the senses of audiences with their weird electronic music, you put together a four-woman keyboard band, and you take up the drums. Read on, for the story of the Sisters of Transistors
, "a tale which wanders between truth, history and myth, and involves panic in America, army issue organs, a Derbyshire pub and a member of 808 State!
" [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 7:52 AM - 3 comments
is a short documentary about Klaus Kemp, master of the Victorian art of diatom arrangement. (via
posted by stoneweaver at 7:26 AM - 3 comments
The assumption that synthetic biology makes it easy for anybody to “engineer biology” is not true.
The underlying vision holds that well-characterized biological parts can be easily obtained from open-source online registries and then assembled, by people with no specialist training outside professional scientific institutions, into genetic circuits, devices and systems that will reliably perform desired functions in live organisms.
This vision, however, does not even reflect current realities in academic or commercial science laboratories
posted by sammyo at 6:44 AM - 11 comments
Avast ye maties, it be Talk Like A Pirate Day! When ye be finished dressin up to get free donuts
, take a look at this beauty of a link
, where a man wonders 'bout the existence of black pirates!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:05 AM - 26 comments
The most feminist moments in sci-fi history
-- from 1905 Indian feminist proto-sf to the rescue of Star Trek by female fans and beyond.
posted by MartinWisse at 5:58 AM - 12 comments
The dance of the peacock spider
"With their ornately-colored bodies, rhythmic pulsations, and booty-shaking dance moves, male peacock spiders attract the attention of spectating females as well as researchers. One such animal behavior specialist, Madeline Girard
, collected more than 30 different peacock spider species from the wilds of Australia and brought them back to her lab at UC Berkeley. Under controlled conditions, she recorded their unique dances in the hopes of deciphering what these displays actual say to a female spider and how standards differ between species.'
posted by dhruva at 8:12 PM - 21 comments
New global population predictions
published in Science today says that world population stabilisation is unlikely this century, with an 80% probability that world population, now 7.2 billion, will increase to between 9.6 and 12.3 billion in 2100, greatly exceeding previous consensus figures that settled around 9 billion, and is expected to keep growing next century. More
in the Guardian.
posted by wilful at 7:38 PM - 94 comments
BoJack Horseman Is the Funniest Show About Depression Ever
BoJack Horseman is a weird cartoon about a washed-up sitcom star (who's a horse), a snappy social criticism of the entertainment industry, and the kind of in-jokey cartoon designed to tickle the internet. It's also one of the most aggressive portraits of depression I think I've ever seen. Look past the anthropomorphic animal characters and the satire of toxic celebrity culture: This show is radically sad. I love it.
Netflix Original's animated series BoJack Horseman
stars Will Arnett, Amy Sedaris, and Alison Brie. It co-stars Aaron Paul and Paul F. Tompkins and has a long and impressive
list of guest stars. [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A at 7:03 PM - 90 comments
From humble beginnings
as a tabletop game shop in London in the late 1970s with an exclusive contract to distribute Dungeons & Dragons in the United Kingdom, Games Workshop
soon moved into producing its own games
, most notably the wildly successful Warhammer Fantasy Battle
and Warhammer 40,000
. Over the years, the company has transformed itself into a slick marketing machine, dedicated to selling its own (expensive) products to an ever-younger demographic, while managing to live up to its reputation as the big bad
corporation of tabletop gaming. For fans of the spirit and style of the Games Workshop of their youth that aren't interested in the company's products today, there’s Oldhammer
: an Internet community dedicated to playing Warhammer as it existed in the 1980s. [more inside]
posted by yellowlightman at 6:47 PM - 28 comments
Wasabi is the most difficult plant to grow commercially.
"The first thing to know about wasabi
- or Wasabia japonica
, as it's officially known - is that you have probably never tried the real thing.
That light green paste nestled next to the pink ginger in your box of sushi? It is most likely a mix of mustard, European horseradish, and food colouring.
In fact, by some estimates, only 5% of the wasabi served in Japanese restaurants around the world comes from the rhizome, or root, of a wasabi plant."
"For nearly 30 years, Brian Oates has, in his words, "pig-headedly" devoted himself to a single pursuit: setting up the first commercial wasabi farm in North America
." [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 2:05 PM - 68 comments
Building the future in the present
in Rio de Janeiro favelas, which are getting active online
Thanks to young community reporters
people in Rio and all over the world are getting a more accurate, clearer picture of what's happening in the city's favelas.
In 2011 Augusto Paim & MauMau published a two part comic Inside the Favelas
A couple of interviews
with 19 year old Michel Silva of the online
magazine Viva Rocinha
( and FB
posted by adamvasco at 12:28 PM - 3 comments
I let Apple's QuickType keyboard take over my iPhone
, Josh Lowensohn, the Verge, via Predictive poetry
, Mark Liberman, Language Log.
posted by nangar at 11:44 AM - 68 comments
This is Science Magazine
; this is one of their featured front-page stories (date stamped 17 September 2014 8:00 am): "The top 50 science stars of Twitter
", by Jia You
. The list has 46 men and 4 women
. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 10:56 AM - 18 comments
"...it’s a world so full of carnal conflicts of interest
and deception that only now are biologists getting to grips with all of its ins and outs, including an understanding of why human sex may be about pleasure rather than pain."[via BBC] [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 9:56 AM - 35 comments
Yoga ball chair was too bouncy? Standing desk left you yearning for motion? Treadmill desk got you scrambling to keep up? Behold the latest in office fitness and productivity! The Hamster Wheel Standing Desk!
posted by pashdown at 8:15 AM - 35 comments
Thirty years ago this month, NBC premiered "The Cosby Show" and changed the television landscape. And though people will rightly remember it as a groundbreaking show for African Americans
's Jason Bailey argues that it was just as important in its feminism
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 8:02 AM - 69 comments
ComicsAlliance explores the work and legacy of Tom of Finland
(mostly SFW), the legendary homoerotic artist whose work is now available
in a limited edition stamp set
posted by Think_Long at 7:48 AM - 46 comments
International Read an E-Book Day:
The new holday -- "holiday"? -- is the brainchild of OverDrive, a major e-book distributor. OverDrive is the country's largest provider of e-books to libraries; it handles e-books from 5,000 publishers, including major Penguin Random House, Macmillan, HarperCollins, Perseus, Wiley, and Harlequin.
If you've ever checked an e-book out from the L.A. Public Library, it was provided by OverDrive.
To celebrate International Read an E-book Day, Overdrive will be giving away tablets and e-reading devices at the readanebookday.com website and through social media. Readers are asked to "tell their story of what eBooks mean to them" and use the hashtag #eBookDay to be eligible. via: L.A. Times
posted by Fizz at 7:48 AM - 86 comments
writes How To Talk Like A French Chef
I’m not learning the kind of French I intended to.
The other night on one of my days off, I ordered a cocktail at an upscale restaurant that I had never heard of before. It was a mixture of rum and spirits with fruit juice. It sounded interesting but a little too sweet for my taste. I asked the server if it was dégueulasse (deh-guh-lass), which I thought meant ‘gross’.
and The Chocolate Chip Caper
My hands are permanently blood stained (out out damn spot!) and no matter how much bleach or hydrogen pyroxide I use it won’t go away. They are swollen from gutting hunted animals by hand and getting pricked by tiny bullet shattered bones – so much so, that I can’t even get my engagement ring over my knuckle let alone make a tight fist. The scars on my hands, wrists and arms from cooking and accidents (like the time I tripped on a box left on the floor and landed hands first onto our massive hot plate stove burning the entire side of my hand and wrist) are obscene. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:34 AM - 41 comments
Writer Creates “Color Thesaurus” To Help You Correctly Name Any Color Imaginable
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:04 AM - 36 comments
sing a cueca
about being an expatriate - La Cueca del Patiperro
, including one paya
dedicated to those flying the flag abroad, wherever you are! [more inside]
posted by ipsative at 6:05 AM - 1 comment
, a short New Yorker video (11:30) about the military origins of the vocoder. The vocoder—the musical instrument that gave Kraftwerk its robotic sound—began as an early telecommunications device and a top-secret military encoding machine.
posted by ultraviolet catastrophe at 5:52 AM - 14 comments
The Grandparent Scam
Every day, phones are ringing in homes across the country. Maybe yours. On the line: organized teams of con artists trying to bilk you out of thousands of dollars by impersonating your loved ones.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:21 AM - 80 comments
Can we talk about how much the gossipy young girls who cluster in the schoolyard must feel like children to her? And Susan has forgotten about being a child. She is the blessed, the chosen, the promised. Susan has decades on them, wars, loss and betrayal, victory and growing fields, the trust of her subjects. It was a visceral thing, to have all those lives under her protection and to know that her subjects slept safe, peacefully, on dark nights. Here, on this drab concrete, her people are untouchable, indefensible; her self is vanished, her kingdom gone; she can feel the loss like a wound. She has lost her power, but that trust, that responsibility remains. It circles her ankles, trips her in the school hallways.
Can we talk about Susan Pevensie for a moment
? (A followup to this
posted by MartinWisse at 4:10 AM - 50 comments
is a powerful, brief, one-act play written by Susan Glaspell and published in 1916. It is for this play (and a short story version of it entitled "A Jury of Her Peers") that Glaspell is best known today, but she deserves to be better appreciated
: "Her plays received better reviews than those of Eugene O’Neill, and in 1931 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for her play Alison’s House
[pdf summary]. . . . Glaspell was the co-founder with her husband George Cram Cook of the Provincetown Players
(1916-1922), the Little Theatre that did most to promote American dramatists, and her diplomacy and energy held the group together for seven years. It was largely thanks to Glaspell’s intervention that O’Neill’s first plays were performed, and she played a major role in stimulating and encouraging his writing in the following years."
posted by ocherdraco at 4:02 AM - 5 comments
What happened to pay toilets in the USA? In the early 1900s, when railroads connected America’s biggest cities with rural outposts, train stations were sometimes the only place in town with modern plumbing. To keep locals from freely using the bathrooms, railroad companies installed locks on the stall doors—only to be unlocked by railroad employees for ticketed passengers. Eventually, coin-operated locks were introduced, making the practice both more convenient and more profitable. Pay toilets then sprung up in the nation’s airports, bus stations, and highway rest stops. By 1970, America had over 50,000 pay toilets.
By 1980, there were almost none.
posted by modernnomad at 10:52 PM - 97 comments
"If I had been born 10 years earlier, I don’t think I would be an animator," wrote Makoto Shinkai
. Despite the fact that even his earliest animations were completed with a Mac and a tablet, his style is influenced by the works of prior Japanese animators, even earning him the title "the next Miyazaki," which he says is an honor, but overstating his skills
. From his earliest short, Other Worlds
, he set some of the tone and pacing featured in his subsequent works, which are discussed in the lead up to an interview Shinkai did with Tested
. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:48 PM - 10 comments
Welcome to TextMechanic.com!
A suite of simple, single task, browser based, text manipulation tools. [more inside]
posted by not_on_display at 10:36 PM - 41 comments
For those of you that haven't discovered her yet, I present Jessica Hernandez
(and the Deltas).
Sorry I Stole Your Man
No Place Left to Hide
and Cry, Cry, Cry.
(here's a handy Spotify playlist
posted by HuronBob at 9:26 PM - 3 comments
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