With the finals of the National Spelling Bee about to begin (on ESPN, streaming may not be available to you), "Vocativ and Google Trends were eager to demonstrate just how accomplished these youngsters are", so they compiled a list of the most spellchecked words in each of the 50 United States and D.C. (NOT in map format)
Toshio Shibata’s Mesmerizing Photographs of Water [New York Times]
The Japanese photographer Toshio Shibata is fascinated by water — in particular, the way it interacts with man-made structures. For the later half of his almost-40-year career in photography, he has explored this relationship in novel ways, hiding horizon lines and taking the perspective of the water itself with his camera, visually evoking its rushing sound.
"The beginning of my interest in fragrance coincided more or less with a momentous year in perfumery: 1981. It was in that first year of what would later be called the Big Eighties that a Beverly Hills boutique released an eponymous scent housed in a box with yellow stripes that evoked the store’s awning. Giorgio was an immediate and a ubiquitous smash, a powerhouse floral so outsized that restaurants were said to refuse seating to Giorgio-wearing patrons." The '80s ushered in a new era in perfumery. [more inside]
Singer John Legend's latest video, "You and I," celebrates all kinds of beauty. And he's getting all kinds of press for it. From Laverne Cox removing her makeup to Tig Notaro fixing her hair, the video features four minutes of women contemplating their reflections while Legend sings that they're beautiful. [more inside]
Each spring, the Broadway community raises money for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and the Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative, leading up to the annual Easter Bonnet competition. After the curtain call, the cast, after a show has opened, normally asks audience members to donate spare cash, or to buy a signed poster. Last night, the cast of Broadway's "Beautiful" had a special guest star auctioneer.
Marc Anderson, the winner of the Beautiful Now sound competition has a site called Nature Soundmap where you can listen to sounds from around the world. [more inside]
In An Autumn Garden "I always want to write erotic music... Not only about the love between men and women, but in a much more universal sense - about the sensuality of the mechanism of the universe... about life." Toru Takemitsu Part 1 Part 2> I close my eyes for this (you don't have to).
The World's most beautiful McDonalds may very well be located in Budapest, Hungary. With vaulted, coffered ceilings wrought-iron scrollwork and modern chairs, it's a lovely place to order a cheeseburger. [more inside]
Atlas for the Blind, 1837: "From the spectacular David Rumsey Map Collection, the 1837 “Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind“, embossed heavy paper featuring lines, letters and geographical symbols, destined to help blind children to visualise geography. Here’s the whole book with zoomable pages." [Via: Socks-Studio]
Photographer Stefano Bonazzi's series Smoke, where nude subjects vanish into the air.
Portland Nights is a series of structured motion controlled time-lapse clips taken in and around downtown Portland, Oregon at night over the course of several months.
"They look as if they were taken on another planet, or at least on the set of a new and very expensive science fiction movie. Yet these pictures are of the Fly Geyser which is very much of planet earth."
Take less than a minute out of your life to listen to Christina Aguilera in the original Klingon, and in the process learn why you should knock before entering on the starship Enterprise.
Amazing dance animation. Ryan Woodward submitted this to Sundance Film Festival. Sad that they didn't accept it because it really is beautiful.
The Rufous Hummingbird measures only 4-inches, but it can pack a lot of beauty into that small package. Often described as "feisty," it weighs just a little more than a penny. With a migratory range of 1500 km, the Rufous has the longest known avian migration proportional to its size.
Sea Pools: And there are the ocean pools, so beloved by Australians that they have their own culture, a culture robust enough to be the subject of a documentary: Sea Pool: A Life in the Ocean, teased in the video above. Bondi Icebergs, shown in the teaser, is particularly amazing; fed by crashing waves, it is briny and bracing all year round. Membership requires that you swim every weekend, regardless of the weather. Do that for five years, and you’re a member for life. It is the ultimate pool-lover’s pool club. [more inside]
The Good, The Bad and The Etsy. A blog highlighting the Good, the Bad, and the Etsy. [via mefi projects]
Welcome to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, located to the right side of India, where you can take a ride on an Elephant on the Beach, swim with the local Fauna, and snorkel or scuba dive to your merriment. [more inside]
Keith Thorne has stunningly colored pictures of decaying urban spaces on his Flickr stream, including some taken at an abandoned German military hospital that once treated Adolf Hitler. A few pictures feature himself. Via.
Emily, a history major at Princeton University, took a seat. “I am upset by the Iraq War, but I don’t focus on it, because it’s a negative energy,” she said. “I think we are overanalyzing the situation. I mean, here we are at Bungalow 8!” Via Wonkette, natch.
Fuzetsu Fire bullets by manuevering your pixel as close as possible to the shots fired by the enemy in the center. Requires Java Runtime Environment. (Since there's no sound, here's a sharity blog whose music would provide an excellent soundtrack: Curved Air.) Game via Jay and Good Experience.
Avenue is a site of a snap photograph. Please enjoy it slowly. Here's a Japanese site of exquisite photographs. And lest I be accused of self-posting, let me say for the record that I neither took nor posed for the photos in the Orange Swan series.
A Beautiful Mind sweeps the Golden Globes. There you have it folks. As an unabashed LOTR fan, I was mildly disappointed, but not at all surprised that the outsider Peter Jackson did not get his due.
Startlingly beautiful girl. What is her life like? Does she resent it? How uncomfortable must life be for this girl's boyfriend? Why do restaurants give her a 75% discount if she sits at a window table? Rhetorical questions all, but sometimes you gotta ask. Be sure to click the slideshow thingie. (NYtimes link)