November 23

The Greatest Paper Map of the United States You'll Ever See

Can one paper wall map really outshine all others—so definitively that it becomes award-worthy? One man outside Eugene Oregon spent nearly 6000 hours over 2 years working alone on his map, which has won the “Best of Show” award at the annual competition of the Cartography and Geographic Information Society.
posted by twilightlost at 2:37 AM - 2 comments

November 22

Native America Calling Talks The First Thanksgiving

National radio program Native America Calling shares the indigenous American peoples' stories [59m, sadly no transcription] about how Thanksgiving originated, rose up in US culture as a holiday, and what it means to them today.
posted by hippybear at 9:30 PM - 2 comments

Small beer

Looking for a nice little speakeasy? Next time you're in NYC, check out the fine bars listed in Zagrat. Better go fast before they get too popular--they're already getting some hip press. Hey, it beats visiting a bedbug hotel or falling into a hipster trap.
posted by ferret branca at 8:10 PM - 2 comments

What does self care mean?

True self-care is not salt baths and chocolate cake, it is making the choice to build a life you don’t need to regularly escape from. [more inside]
posted by AFABulous at 7:18 PM - 24 comments

400yo Map of Nahuatl Lineage in Southern Puebla, Mexico

An interesting mix of Aztec hieroglyphs and Spanish language. This 1593 map shows southern Puebla from the church of Todos Santos (now northeast of Mexico City) and Lake Texcoco, to the church of Santa Cruz Huitziltepec, Pue (lower right). The map also reveals the genealogy and land ownership for the Nahuatl "de Leon" family from 1480 to 1593. Just recently acquired by the U.S. Library of Congress.
posted by MovableBookLady at 6:39 PM - 5 comments

These are the times we live in!

Meet virtual YouTuber Kizuna A.I. [more inside]
posted by lucidium at 4:01 PM - 3 comments


Forgotten fruit trees: What the heck is a persimmon? (Fall's best fruit!) What the heck is a medlar? What the heck is a quince? What the heck is a pawpaw? Some of these need bletting [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:07 PM - 82 comments

How we fill gaps in our everyday experiences

Instead of taking us out of the real world and drawing us into the artificial virtual space, [Pokémon Go] combines the two; we look at reality and interact with it through the fantasy frame of the digital screen, and this intermediary frame supplements reality with virtual elements which sustain our desire to participate in the game, push us to look for them in a reality which, without this frame, would leave us indifferent. Sound familiar? Of course it does. What the technology of Pokémon Go externalizes is simply the basic mechanism of ideology—at its most basic, ideology is the primordial version of “augmented reality.”
Slavoj Žižek unpacks Pokémon Go .
posted by Rumple at 2:08 PM - 35 comments

Oh Johnny Planesvalker

The #GoogleTranslatesMTG hashtag highlights Magic: The Gathering (previously) cards that have been run through Google Translate many times before finally arriving back in English. @RosewattaStone is working to post a new one every day. You may prefer to have Desert Bus read the cards out loud to you... well, try to read them, anyway. [more inside]
posted by one for the books at 1:49 PM - 5 comments

Spoiler warning: Every film ever made

CinemaSins is a very popular youtube channel whose motto is that "no movie is without sin. We exist mostly just to remind you of that." It is also a youtube channel that is wrong about everything. And I mean it. [more inside]
posted by Pyrogenesis at 1:02 PM - 72 comments

Not a Christmas Post

Die Hard is not a Christmas Movie.
posted by Artw at 12:49 PM - 104 comments

Good news, everyone!

Dave Pell (Managing Editor, the Internet) has produced a special edition of his newsletter: the reader-supplied NextDraft Good News Only Pre-Thanksgiving Extravaganza. [more inside]
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:30 AM - 2 comments

"an anthropomorphized Ship of Theseus"

While the show is currently halfway through, Land of the Lustrous has already announced itself as a singular vision. The only other show to surpass it this year is David Lynch’s magnum opus Twin Peaks: The Return. But where Lynch rewrites the rules of history and structure, Kyogoku redefines cinematic motion. We are lucky to witness something so bold, so utterly new this year, and nothing looks and feels more unlike anything else than Land of the Lustrous.
Carol Grant looks at the beauty and horror of Houseki no Kuni/Land of the Lustrous, a CGI anime show about sentient non-gendered jewel-people fighting off Lunerian invaders who want to harvest their bodies.
posted by MartinWisse at 11:22 AM - 7 comments

Burn each match just so, and arrange in a diamond.

Adam Hillman, an artist from New Jersey, makes colorful geometric art from the arrangement of unremarkable objects.
posted by cortex at 10:44 AM - 10 comments

“The Playstation 4 produced in Brazil cost 4000 reais.”

Brazil's Video Game Gray Markets [YouTube] “Brazil’s video game market is strange. A military dictatorship ruled the country from 1964 to 1985 and enforced strict protectionist economic laws. During the period, Brasília eschewed imports and attempted to manufacture everything it could within its country’s borders. That led to an odd hodgepodge of cloned systems, strange cartridges, and pirated games that are still with the country today. Drew Scanlon of Clothmap recently traveled to Brazil where he explored the strange gray markets that make up the country’s video game culture. He sees a combo Mortal Kombat/ Street Fighter II cartridge made to run on an NES, strange consoles of questionable legality, and learns what happens when the local games store learn the cops are coming to raid the place.” [via: Motherboard] [Previously.]
posted by Fizz at 10:26 AM - 6 comments

Brought to you by the Orthopedic Surgeons' Association of Japan

Slippery Stairs is a Japanese game show that delivers exactly what it promises. [SLYT]
posted by gottabefunky at 9:50 AM - 48 comments


What's better than some pre-Thanksgiving vintage cats?
posted by Zosia Blue at 9:30 AM - 23 comments

Sticky Situation

Data contradicts common talking point that high taxes cause the rich to flee.
posted by The Whelk at 9:26 AM - 23 comments

Please tell me where have all the hobos gone to

Stobe the Hobo, the internet’s most famous train-hopper, dead after apparent accident
James Stobie was the most famous train-hopping hobo on the internet. He rode the rails in a way that was reminiscent of a desperate man searching for work at every city he could find during the Great Depression. Except that Stobie, aka Stobe the Hobo, made YouTube videos about his experiences, hopping trains to move around the country for the pure fun of it.
[more inside]
posted by peeedro at 8:25 AM - 29 comments

Preaching Integration. Practicing Segregation.

In February, after an investigation by ProPublica, Facebook announced it would be more diligent about prohibiting housing, employment and credit discrimination in ads on its platform. (In the United States, the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) prevents discrimination based on race, skin color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.) As a follow-up, ProPublica bought dozens of rental housing ads on Facebook last week, but asked that they not be shown to certain categories of users: African Americans, Muslims, mothers of high school kids, the blind and/or people interested in wheelchair ramps, Jews, people from Puerto Rico, expats from Argentina and Spanish speakers. All are groups protected by the FHA. Every single ad was approved within minutes.
posted by zarq at 7:33 AM - 45 comments

The art, madness and history of holiday centerpieces

As holiday festivities ramp up, you might be wondering "how should I decorate this table? Why should I decorate this table?" To answer both questions, Curbed continues its Period Dramas series with How Christmas decorations evolved through the 1800s in New England. For another look at (New England) Christmas Past, here's Christmas: Williamsburg Style. But wait, you say, let's tackle one holiday at a time. OK, here's the origin of the Thanksgiving cornucopia, and more on the cornucopia in general. If you want a more beachy theme, here's Secret Life of Antiques: Victorian Shell Work. And if you combine all that, you can get a festive garbage clam, just like Ivanka Trump. Holiday centerpiece problem solved!
posted by filthy light thief at 7:07 AM - 19 comments

Ratko Mladic convicted of orchestrating genocide of Bosnian Muslims

Survivors called Mr. Mladic the Butcher of Bosnia. The deadliest year of the campaign was 1992, when 45,000 people died, often in their homes, on the streets or in a string of concentration camps. Others perished in the nearly four-year siege of Sarajevo, the Bosnian capital, where snipers and shelling terrorized residents for more than three years, and in the mass executions of 8,000 Muslim men and boys after Mr. Mladic’s forces overran the United Nations-protected enclave of Srebrenica. [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 6:06 AM - 13 comments

Travel, Meet People, and Photograph Them

"In 1905, Charles Clayton ("Todd") Webb III was born in Detroit, Michigan. Having been a successful stockbroker in the 1920’s, he lost all of his earnings, and then some, in The Crash. During the Depression, Webb prospected for gold, worked as a forest ranger, and wrote short stories that have gone unpublished. It was during this exploratory period in the 1930s that he first picked up a camera. His interest and love for photography soon crowded out his writing ambitions, and he was able to do the two things he loved the most: travel, meet people, and photograph them."
posted by ChuraChura at 5:32 AM - 1 comment

VVater VVitches

A science blogger asked UK water companies if they still used the ancient 'art' of water divining / dowsing ... and the answer was yes, mostly. Since the story broke the companies have backtracked somewhat - it's not official policy but it still goes on.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 4:11 AM - 83 comments

Pointy Water

The Icicle Atlas contains more than 230,000 images of icicles (plus 3D models, time lapse movies and time-series data) on 237 icicles made at the University of Toronto over a five year period. [Via Ottawa Citizen] The atlas is the end product of a quest to determine why icicles form ripples.
posted by Mitheral at 1:26 AM - 8 comments

November 21

David Cassidy dies at 67

1970s teen heartthrob David Cassidy of The Partridge Family dies from liver failure [autoplay video]. One of the Partridge Family hits was "I Think I Love You."
posted by maurreen at 9:55 PM - 47 comments

When you find a non-toxic channel, hold on to it

Here's A List of Some Videogame Youtubers Who Aren't Terrible [more inside]
posted by naju at 8:24 PM - 66 comments

One more battle and Mosul will be fully liberated, inshallah

Warning: graphic violence
After the liberation of Mosul, an orgy of killing
posted by Joe in Australia at 8:18 PM - 8 comments

Amazon Australia likely to launch on Black Friday

Black Friday as a commercial concept probably shouldn't have gotten off the ground in Australia, but the rumour mill suggests a hard launch of the local site this Friday. [more inside]
posted by turbid dahlia at 8:07 PM - 17 comments

Two days of Bowie-inspired radio programming

Last weekend, NTS and Sonos presented a full weekend of programming celebrating the David Bowie, broadcasting direct from the new Sonos London store on Seven Dials in Covent Garden. Hosts included Dev Hynes, Iggy Pop, Thurston Moore, Connan Mockasin, Neneh Cherry, and many more. The full archive is here; descriptions of individual shows (as provided by the NTS website), with links to each show, follow. [more inside]
posted by carrienation at 5:12 PM - 5 comments

'Taches through time

Prehi(p)storic An early history of the ostentatious moustache, a storymap from the Early Celtic Art in Context project.
posted by Helga-woo at 3:25 PM - 6 comments

Once he started, it was all about the stops...

Christopher Herwig is back with more wild architectural wonders: When Christopher Herwig, a Canadian photographer, first embarked on his arduous long-distance cycle from London to St Petersburg back in 2002, the outlandishly designed bus stop was nothing more than a pleasing oddity. What Herwig didn’t expect was that this was only the start of his life-long obsession; there were similarly peculiar roadside shelters scattered across the post-Soviet world. His Soviet Bus Stops Volume II is a new collection of bus stop photos from remote areas of Georgia, Ukraine, and Russia. Herwig previously on Metafilter: A fascinating journey of architectural obsession (also previously and previouslier).
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 1:30 PM - 5 comments

"I’ve been keeping a straight face for thirty-five years."

The Church of the SubGenius Finally Plays It Straight, Eddie Smith
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:21 PM - 65 comments

The Ordovician What?

I do love the Cambrian Explosion but this is just as spectacular. I checked the link to the original publication but it only leads to an abstract so this article is better.
posted by MovableBookLady at 12:54 PM - 7 comments

"He cannot say that people want trivia"

CEO of HQ (a live trivia app) to The Daily Beast: If You Run This Profile, We’ll Fire Our Host
[CEO] Yusupov’s objections began with the line, "Scott said that despite the attention, he's still able to walk down the street and order his favorite salad from Sweetgreen without being accosted." "He cannot say that!" Yusupov shouted. "We do not have a brand deal with Sweetgreen! Under no circumstances can he say that." [...] When The Daily Beast read Yusupov a quote from Rogowski saying “I can make people happy and give them the trivia they so desperately love and want. It's been so great to build this community," Yusupov implored the reporter to “take that out.” Asked for clarification, Yusupov replied that Rogowski was absolutely not allowed to say that he "enjoys making people happy and giving them the trivia they want."
posted by Atom Eyes at 12:51 PM - 64 comments

A bear, a bat, a pair of legs, never a tiny king from a fairy tale

    But for the actual test – this is the sentence that Rorschachians always repeat – ‘what matters isn’t what you see, but how you see.’ A few ‘content’ answers would later come to be thought significant: ‘food responses’ indicate that a person is ‘unusually dependent’ in relationships; a lot of sexual responses point to schizophrenia. But of more importance is whether an answer is judged to have ‘good form’ – ‘whether it could reasonably be said to describe the actual shape of the blot’ – as determined by Rorschach’s own sense of things, and also by responses from other ‘normal subjects’; he doesn’t say how he determined that those subjects were normal.
Deborah Friedell reviews The Inkblots: Hermann Rorschach, His Iconic Test, and the Power of Seeing [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 11:41 AM - 14 comments

How Coral Researchers Are Coping With the Death of Reefs

The drumbeat of devastating news can take its toll on the mental health of people who have devoted their lives to coral. [more inside]
posted by poffin boffin at 10:50 AM - 23 comments

The monarchy that is money

The climate crisis? It’s capitalism, stupid. Benjamin K. Fong ( NYT Opinion) Kim Stanley Robinson: We’ve Come To A Bad Moment And We Must Change, climate change, capitalism, and dystopia.
posted by The Whelk at 9:20 AM - 61 comments

Playlist: vanguarda paulista

Russ Slater’s vanguarda paulista playlist [After tropicalia ended, the more conservative MPB reigned,] The vanguarda paulista that emerged at the end of the 70s attempted to return to those heady days of tropicália, when it was possible for music to be popular, even as it combined advanced compositional theories with irreverent lyrical ideas and an awareness of mass culture. These same traits characterised the work of the São Paulo based group of musicians and composers who congregated around the small theatre, live venue and record label called the Lira Paulistana.
posted by OmieWise at 9:14 AM - 4 comments


25 years ago, Mortal Kombat redefined American video games [Polygon] “What Mortal Kombat lacked in substance, though, it made up for with style. Its characters, digitized from motion capture footage of martial arts actors, looked “realistic” by the standards of the era. Their movements had a choppy quality, and the fighters never looked like they really inhabited their photorealistic settings, but Mortal Kombat’s gory, lifelike gloom gave it a heavy metal album cover feel that set it apart from Street Fighter’s cartoonish fare. Mortal Kombat’s brawlers bled, froze and died in a number of explicit ways ranging from brutal impalement in a pit of spikes to messy dismemberment. Midway’s brawler invested its viscera with a panache that became the game’s main draw.” [YouTube][Mortal Kombat - 25 Year Anniversary Trailer] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 8:48 AM - 72 comments

How colonial violence came home: the ugly truth of the first world war

"But in order to grasp the current homecoming of white supremacism in the west, we need an even deeper history. [...] Such a history would show that the global racial order in the century preceding 1914 was one in which it was entirely natural for “uncivilised” peoples to be exterminated, terrorised, imprisoned, ostracised or radically re-engineered. Moreover, this entrenched system was not something incidental to the first world war, with no connections to the vicious way it was fought or to the brutalisation that made possible the horrors of the Holocaust. Rather, the extreme, lawless and often gratuitous violence of modern imperialism eventually boomeranged on its originators."
posted by destrius at 5:31 AM - 33 comments

Can't help put a smile on my face

A catchy song about dogs to brighten up your Tuesday. (A SLYT from the people who brought you Dump Truck and Cement Mixer. )
posted by mippy at 4:50 AM - 7 comments

The visitor

Interstellar object confirmed to be from another solar system - it's dark red and has organic material - absolutely nothing to worry about [nudity].
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:28 AM - 106 comments

November 20

"They respect each other and they can read each other."

Tanja Brandt loves photographing animals. A recent project involves Ingo, a Belgian shepherd, and Poldi (Napoleon), a one-year-old owlet.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:43 PM - 13 comments

A half-century old machine that forces her to breathe.

The Last of the Iron Lungs "In 2013, the Post-Polio Health International (PPHI) organizations estimated that there were six to eight iron lung users in the United States. Now, PPHI executive director Brian Tiburzi says he doesn’t know anyone alive still using the negative-pressure ventilators. This fall, I met three polio survivors who depend on iron lungs. They are among the last few, possibly the last three."
posted by rhizome at 11:13 PM - 34 comments

The Worst of the Web?

The end of Net Neutrality to be announced by the FCC as early as this Thanksgiving week. As early as tomorrow, Tuesday, November 21, in the year of our lord 2017, the FCC may announce their intention to dismantle the Obama-era rule that guarantees that all web traffic be created equal. Fast lanes for some websites, blocking competitors' websites for others (let's not forget that Comcast is looking to buy some of Fox while we discuss this). [more inside]
posted by General Malaise at 7:14 PM - 141 comments

Tommy wore dresses because his tail interfered with pants.

Tommy Tucker was a male grey squirrel who toured the United States wearing women's fashions and selling war bonds to support America in WWII as well as other charitable endeavors. He died in 1949, was stuffed and was bequeathed to the Smithsonian in 2005. While the museum maintains an archive of Tommy Tucker related ephemera (and possibly dresses), the actual stuffed squirrel lives in the lawyer's office who had been handling the bequest according to this podcast. (prev, via)
posted by jessamyn at 5:43 PM - 18 comments

Do we have to be dead & dug up from the ground to be worthy of respect?

Native Americans had long tried to prevent the theft of their dead. But it was not until the 1960s, in the wake of the Civil Rights movement, that activists turned collections into a question of conscience: Why were U.S. museums filled almost exclusively with the bones of Native Americans? “When a white man’s grave is dug up, it’s called grave robbing,” as the Tohono O’odham activist Robert Cruz said in 1986. “But when an Indian’s grave is dug up, it’s called archaeology.”
The long ethical arc of displaying human remains: A look at why museums exhibit Egyptian mummies, but not Native American bones, by Chip Colwell.
posted by Rumple at 5:28 PM - 27 comments

Your reckoning. And mine.

Your Reckoning. And Mine. As stories about abuse, assault, and complicity come flooding out, how do we think about the culprits in our lives? Including, sometimes, ourselves. [content warning: sexual assault, harassment] [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger at 5:19 PM - 60 comments

Bus! No!

The Weather Channel was photobombed by a bus today. (slyt)
posted by curious nu at 4:15 PM - 51 comments

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