"If the phone rang and you were in another room, you had to come running: in that immediate sense, and in a way that now seems comical, your phone controlled you. And before the ‘90s, there was no caller ID, an inconvenience which ensured, for that benighted first century-plus of the instrument’s analog existence, the first premise of phone horror—that you could never know for certain whose voice, or what sound, would issue from the other end of that raised receiver
." - HiLoBrow is in the middle of a series
exploring the tropes and history of Phone Horror. Of particular note is the brief historical connection between the telephone and the world of occult crypto-science
- The Atlantic explains further.
posted by The Whelk
on Jun 25, 2014 -
The psychology of Soylent and the prison of first-world food choices
People are born with neither the ability to cook nor compile; both are taught, and chastising even an adult for not knowing how to cook a healthy meal makes about as much sense as chastising an adult for not knowing how to code or how to compile an application from source. Each of those two different ridicules demonstrates an identical lack of empathy and an accompanying equally stunning sense of privilege that you should probably check immediately.
posted by the man of twists and turns
on May 29, 2014 -
Your mind tells you there is a problem whenever it detects a somewhat possible unpleasant future experience, which it can do all day, and it happily will if you don't call its bluff. Of course there's an infinite supply of potential disasters. These are just thoughts, but they seem like realities
, and any one of them can create an emotional pitfall now no matter what actually happens later.
posted by paleyellowwithorange
on May 3, 2014 -
In China, there are certain "bad notes" that frighten people and are refused as legal tender. Why?
posted by reenum
on Jan 16, 2014 -
"'If you can't do the time, don't do the crime.' So goes the old saying. Yet conditions in some American facilities are so obscene that they amount to a form of extrajudicial punishment." Mother Jones is profiling "America's 10 Worst Prisons."
Facilities were chosen for the list based on "...three years of research, correspondence with prisoners, and interviews with reform advocates." [more inside]
posted by zarq
on May 14, 2013 -
The county where no one's gay.
The 2010 Census of Franklin County Mississippi shows no same sex couples. (pdf)
. CNN videographer Brandon Ancil and human rights columnist John D. Sutter tried to determine if the census was wrong, and see if they could find gay men and women willing to speak about "what keeps them hidden." Video
posted by zarq
on Mar 30, 2013 -
Al Jazeera has purchased Al Gore's Current TV,
giving them a much wider American audience. However, the deal suffered an immediate casualty when Time Warner Cable Inc., the nation's second-largest cable TV operator, announced it is dropping Current TV due to the deal. "Our agreement with Current has been terminated and we will no longer be carrying the service. We are removing the service as quickly as possible," the company said in a statement
posted by dejah420
on Jan 2, 2013 -
From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films
were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating
, preparing for being drafted
, and shyness
, as well as to children on following the law
, the value of quietness in school
, and appreciating our parents
. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health
, what kind of people live in America
, how to keep a job
, supervising women workers
, the nature of capitalism
, and the plantation System in Southern life
. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives
as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb
on Nov 1, 2012 -
If you're looking for some uplifting dance music to help you get your week going, Goldroom's Otoño Mix 2011
is a very soulful nu-disco collection that pairs nicely with The Magician's Magic Tape Sixteen.
Need something with more energy? Edwin van Cleef's November mix
is a bit more hands in the air, perfectly suited for the elimination of afternoon doldrums. [more inside]
posted by beaucoupkevin
on Nov 21, 2011 -
An Era in Ideas.
"To mark the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, The Chronicle Review
asked a group of influential thinkers to reflect on some of the themes that were raised by those events and to meditate on their meaning, then and now. The result is a portrait of the culture and ideas of a decade born in trauma, but also the beginning of a new century, with all its possibilities and problems." [Via]
posted by homunculus
on Aug 13, 2011 -
Milton Glaser on fear of failure
"This is the way to professional accomplishment: You have to demonstrate that you know something unique that you can repeat over and over and over, until ultimately you lose interest in it. The consequence of specialization and success is that it hurts you. It hurts you because it doesn't aid in your development. The truth of the matter is that understanding development comes from failure." [more inside]
posted by heatherann
on May 25, 2011 -
Anger, Politics and the Wisdom of Uncertainty
- "If there's somebody or even some institution to blame, it turns out people are much more likely to get angry... anger tends to inspire individuals to engage in more political activities than they would otherwise... Without someone to blame, respondents mostly just grow fearful and anxious... A particular danger of anger seems to be closed-mindedness. Research finds that when citizens get angry, they close themselves off to alternative views and redouble their sense of conviction in their existing views. Fear and anxiety, on the other hand, seem to promote openness to alternative viewpoints and a willingness to compromise." (via
) [more inside]
posted by kliuless
on May 18, 2011 -
How Do You Treat Rabbit Phobia?
With rabbits. A German student who claimed her teacher was terrified of rabbits was exonerated
in a defamation suit on Tuesday when the judge determined that the teacher did, indeed, have a raging case of leporiphobia
. The bizarre story began when a chalk drawing of a bunny caused the teacher to cry and flee her classroom. How do psychologists treat rabbit phobia?
posted by Fizz
on Jul 26, 2010 -
Though President Obama has signed no laws since taking office that prohibit gun purchases and ownership, that hasn't stopped permit applications and weapons sales in the United States from rising through the roof and worried state legislators from passing laws
they wouldn't otherwise pass, which greatly ease access and allow carrying weapons in, among other public areas, city, state and national parks
. Schools may have to get their kids prepared.
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Feb 23, 2010 -