“This has been my go-to brownie recipe for 30 years. In the ’80s, an acquaintance in Germany to whom I brought some of the brownies, and who considered herself a great cook, asked for the recipe but was never able to get it to work. She kept asking me what she was doing wrong and I was never able to solve her problem. Eventually, she moved to the U.S. and stole my husband!” The Story Behind the Greatest Internet Recipe Comment of All Time
Not drinking or driving, teens increasingly put off traditional markers of adulthood. "...teenagers are increasingly delaying activities that had long been seen as rites of passage into adulthood. The study, published Tuesday in the journal Child Development, found that the percentage of adolescents in the United States who have a driver’s license, who have tried alcohol, who date and who work for pay has plummeted since 1976, with the most precipitous decreases in the past decade."
Autumn arrives and with it comes a cornucopia, but pumpkins, real pumpkins! Utah oh, and maybe everywhere has a fascination with large pumpkins, and the Utah State Fair has a yearly contest. Usually these pumpkins are not so much pumpkin like, but rugged and gnarly, not the pumpkin of a Halloween doorstep. However, this one is a ~2000 lb chunk of punkin' perfection, grown in a hot house not by a farmer, but by a guy with a passion.
The online people-who-love-to-smoke community is one of the most supportive and kindly corners of the internet I have ever encountered, especially for a group entirely preoccupied with the abetting of a habit that is the leading cause of preventable death worldwide. I’m not sure if this is a particularly illuminating observation, whether it says something profoundly terrible about humanity and where it is headed, or whether this is something we should find solace in. I change my mind about it a lot.*present company excluded
Deadspin: There’s no use trying to skirt around this, so let’s cut straight to the chase: A Colorado Springs woman has been taking big craps in front of someone’s house for a few weeks now. They’re calling her the Mad Pooper and she won’t stop. The cops are involved. It appears to be some sort of revenge pooping. I hope you enjoy this report from local CBS outlet KKTV as much as I did. [more inside]
Kirk vs. the Gorn is one of the all-time great fight scenes. Therefore, it starts with the future's greatest offensive hand-to-hand maneuver: the double-punch.
Just a few months shy of 50, Rolling Stone has been put up to sale by co-founder and publisher Jann Wenner. Better known as a reference in music journalism, it also fostered a number of political writers, becoming one of the main features on the magazine during the second GW Bush term and the 2008 Financial Crisis, as smaller internet outlets occupied their place as trendsetters in music.
Scientists Can Now Repaint Butterfly Wings - "Thanks to CRISPR, scientists are studying animal evolution in ways that were previously thought to be impossible." [more inside]
The Vietnam veterans who became the crafting kings of the county fair "The first time Rod won a blue ribbon at the Montgomery County Fair, in 2010, it was Nathan who had secretly submitted Rod’s handmade blanket. After that, Rod submitted entries on his own every year. He had never mentioned anything about entering his final project at the fair. But seven months after he died, Nathan decided to do it anyway."
The footage, courtesy of Hirola Conservation Programme. Reporting in The New York Times, with more photos of white animals.
Australians are receiving a special postal survey from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). The survey asks one simple question that can only be answered yes or no: "Do you support a change in the law to allow same-sex couples to marry?" The postal survey is a first for Australia - and not only is it not mandatory to vote in the survey, the results will not be legally binding. [more inside]
What if colonialism.... was good?[PDF] Bruce Gilley makes The Case For Colonialism. A nice timeline at The Daily Nous of some responses, as well as how the original piece failed peer review. [more inside]
As the 1800s dawned, 22 orphans boarded a Spanish ship, under the care of their orphanage director and a team of doctors and nurses. As they set sail across the Atlantic, the plan was set in motion: they infected one of the children with cowpox. Over the following months, they passed the virus from one child to the other, in carefully spaced succession, to create a living transmission chain that would reach the Americas. They thus carried the smallpox vaccine to the new world in what became known as the Balmis Expedition.
Shoog McDaniel, is a southern, queer, non-binary, fat photographer and artist living in Gainesville, Florida. "My work is about highlighting bodies and lives that are often overlooked by popular society. I enjoy photographing fat bodies, trans bodies, and queer bodies. People`with gap-toothed smiles and missing buttons. I capture images of my friends. With little exceptions, I have a connection with the humans in my photos and I intend to show that through the intimacy of my portraits. I strive to connect the viewer of each photo to beauty within themselves, through understanding the brilliancy of diversity, by showing them that there are many ways to be beautiful." (ALL LINKS VERY NSFW) [more inside]
It's been a teeth-gnashing irritant since there's been paper maps that folding and refolding them is so difficult but inventors to the rescue! Sort of. More or less. Here are some patents to solve the problem. Sort of. More or less.
The popular disc cleaning software CCleaner's most recent version is a payload for malware. Bleeping Computer has more detail.
"September 1997: Kid Rock had just landed a major-label record deal. Little-known Eminem was about to catch Dr. Dre’s ear and land his own. The face-painted duo Insane Clown Posse was grabbing headlines and hitting the charts amid controversy. Within 15 months, all would be household names in the wider music world, a strange bit of synchronicity that sparked magazine essays, cultural analysis and no small amount of head-scratching: Detroit had not only managed to produce three white rap acts. It had produced three of the most prominent of all time."20 years in, Kid Rock, Eminem and ICP are politically relevant — and culturally divided [more inside]
This is an amazingly detailed and smart overview of what to do in the face of identity theft.
(pre,viou,sly posts on business and programming from kalzumeus)
(pre,viou,sly posts on business and programming from kalzumeus)
The Sphinx - Scotland's longest lasting patch of snow - is about to vanish... it has only done so six times in the last 300 years.
Schuyler Bailar is a decorated swimmer who was recruited to Harvard as a female, but has found peace after transitioning to a male. (SLYT)
Eastern Washington is officially the hop capital of the world. It's that time of year again, fresh hop harvest season. One of our favorite little cones growing on a bine is making it's way across the US into kettles to make the beer we all love. This year Eastern Washington toppled Germany as producing more hops than anywhere else in the world. As part of a hop growing family this makes my heart swell with pride. Washington is a really neat state. Lots of news tends to focus on the Seattle area, but the Yakima area of the state is unique and a really cool experience. Also be sure to check out Fresh Hop Festival!
Kern County got a $200,000+ grant and started using closed-source software to perform a new kind of DNA testing for criminal forensics. Now, the principle at stake in California v. Johnson (California's 5th district court of appeals): does due process require that the defendant be able to examine the evidence used to convict them, which includes auditing forensics software to check for bugs? The American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, among others, have filed amicus curiae briefs. [more inside]
"Today, the W3C bequeaths an legally unauditable attack-surface to browsers used by billions of people. They give media companies the power to sue or intimidate away those who might re-purpose video for people with disabilities. They side against the archivists who are scrambling to preserve the public record of our era. The W3C process has been abused by companies that made their fortunes by upsetting the established order, and now, thanks to EME, they’ll be able to ensure no one ever subjects them to the same innovative pressures." [more inside]
Casey Johnston, writer and Swole Woman, writes about disordered eating, dealing with a friend's thoughtless comments, and the pernicious idea that "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels." [more inside]
The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation has released their first annual report, called "Goalkeepers," focused on 18 indicators of global health drawn from the Millennium Development and Sustainable Development goals set by the UN. Through measurements, projections, and case studies, the report showcases many recent advances and ingenuity while contrasting them with signs of donor fatigue and risk of regression. The report is timed for the UN General Assembly meeting this month, as Mr. Gates fears the world is losing its focus on global health. [more inside]
Getting to the Bottom of Tracer's Derrière By Laura Kate Dale [Kotaku] “It feels like a hell of a lot longer, but it was only a little over a year ago that Tracer from Overwatch became the most newsworthy butt in gaming. [#buttgate] Her posterior, which was undeniably shapely, made a stir when developer Blizzard changed one of her in-game poses to reduce the emphasis placed on her buttocks. The replacement pose still showed her butt, and said butt was still perky and visible, but the new pose was intended to fit better with the character's backstory as a pilot, as well as echoing traditional pin up images from the previous century. What was not, however, covered at this point was something more fundamental. Why is Tracer's butt so pronounced no matter the pose it's hanging off? Even after an alteration of poses, the butt remains eye-catching.”
Wind energy used to mine cryptocurrency to fund climate research Taking the form of a 2m wind turbine with environmental sensors, weatherproof computer and 4G uplink, HARVEST ‘feeds’ from two primary symptoms of our changing climate: wind gusts and storms. It does this by transforming wind energy into the electricity required to meet the demanding task of mining cryptocurrency (here Zcash), a decentralised process where computers are financially rewarded for their work maintaining and verifying a public transaction ledger known as the blockchain. Rather than filling the digital wallet of the artist, all rewards earned by the HARVEST mining machine are paid out as donations to non-profit climate change research organisations such that they can better study this planetary-scale challenge.
The self-proclaimed biggest toy store there is (gee whiz!) could file for bankruptcy as soon as this week. [more inside]
"There are lots of reasons why a person might decide to wear a chest binder; chiefly, I think, you should try it if the idea of wearing a chest binder, even once, appeals to you. I fear this may sound more facile than gently encouraging, which is not my intention." - Product Review: When Every Bra Size is Wrong by Mallory Ortberg
The coalition government ruling Iceland has collapsed over restoring legal status to convicted rapists. New elections for the Alþingi (Icelandic Parliment) have been set for the end of October. Warning: Some articles describe sexual abuse of minors. [more inside]
Spomenik Database: An exploration of Yugoslavia's historic and enigmatic endeavor into abstract anti-fascist WWII monument building from 1960 to 1980. During the zenith of communist Yugoslavia under Josip Broz Tito, over a thousand monuments, or spomeniks, were commissioned to not only honor the many who died in the fight against fascism in World War II, but to help forge a new national identity that transcended ethnic and religious divisions, while also rejecting Soviet-inspired socialist realism in favor of abstract postmodernism. The endeavor did not survive long past Tito's death in 1980, and many spomeniks were abandoned or destroyed after the breakup of Yugoslavia in the early 1990s, though others have been either maintained or repurposed. [more inside]
In search of Les Rallizes Dénudés: A writer's search for more information on the enigmatic Japanese psychedelic noise-rock collective, who released no official studio recordings (going into semi-seclusion in the 1970s after their bassist hijacked a plane to North Korea and emerging to play the occasional secret gig, years apart) and are known mostly from a variety of live bootlegs with liner notes of varying reliability.
An interview with backpacking guide Marjorie "Slim" Woodruff on the costs of egocentrism in the backcountry:
Education only works if people are open to change. I think hikers have to undergo a personal epiphany which changes their paradigm. Dog owners are so emotionally caught up in their animal, it is difficult to convince them to change.
Bobby "the Brain" Heenan, widely considered to be both the greatest manager in professional wrestling history and the greatest colour commentator in professional wrestling history, has died following multiple battles with cancer. He was 73. [more inside]
You remember the 1950s atomic era of midcentury design. Most people think of George Nelson when they see the Marshmallow Sofa or the Ball & Sunburst Clocks, and of course Herman Miller Company. Hardly anybody knows about Irving Harper, who actually created these designs in collaboration with Nelson sometimes, and sometimes solo but Nelson was head of the design firm (though not a designer himself) and so he got all the credit. A few years ago, however, Harper was rediscovered. And to the delight of all, he was also discovered as the creator of charming and delightful paper sculptures. A book came out in 2013, and a video by the Herman Miller Co. has given credit to Harper's iconic designs.
Hal Holbrook is still alive, but has decided to end his 63-year run as Mark Twain in a one-man show Holbrook created and has toured around the world. Mark Twain Tonight! won Holbrook a Tony in 1966 and an Emmy nomination in 1967. Holbrook was scheduled to tour the show again this fall until he abruptly announced its end, cancelling the remaining performances. [more inside]
Susan Sarandon posted on instagram the first photo from the shooting of "Going Places". Going Places is an upcoming crime comedy written, directed by, and starring John Turturro, acting as both a remake of the 1974 French film of the same name by Bertrand Blier, and a spin-off to the 1998 cult film The Big Lebowski, from which Turturro reprises his role as Jesus Quintana.
The East German secret police went to extraordinary lengths to track down people who wrote letters to the BBC during the Cold War. Those found were often arrested and jailed, like Karl-Heinz Borchardt, who wrote the following: I have only just started listening to your programme, 'Letters without signatures', but I like it a lot, since it airs opinions you don't find in our media. I am 16 years old. I will write to you regularly, mainly about young people and their views on world affairs. In my view, the west did not intervene strongly enough in Czechoslovakia. Does a country which fought so hard for its freedom have to carry on marching to the tune of the Soviets? Warm regards from a schoolboy
In Jervis Bay, off Eastern Australia, researchers recently spotted 15 gloomy octopuses congregating, communicating, dwelling together, and even evicting each other from dens at a site the scientists named “Octlantis.”
My name is Miles (hence the name of the blog), and I'm obsessed with the MBTA. One man's four and a half year epic quest to ride and review every single bus route serviced by Boston's MBTA.
The Mega Builder of Garry's Mod by Craig Pearson ““How did they do that?” isn’t something you often ask yourself when looking at a Garry’s Mod screenshot. It’s generally obvious how it's done when you can see the joins. But I asked myself that when I came across Vioxtar’s [DeviantArt] work, because he doesn't build typical Garry's Mod contraptions. He builds worlds. Asking myself wouldn't get me any answers, so I took an extra step and asked him. His answers are as detailed and impressive as the work he produces, and gave me a whole new perspective on what it takes to turn Garry's Mod into art. He's broke the game more times than you can imagine, lost sleep, and worked for months on a single scene trying to bring the sandbox to life. I hope you enjoy his story.”
The Detroit Free Press' John Carlisle rides along on the Salvation Army's Bed and Bread program food truck. Here are the stories of some of the people he met. [more inside]