April 21

Rejoice! He is r̶i̶s̶e̶n̶ not dead yet!

The vet told my dad on the phone (??) that his dog had to be put down and he’d come to his house and do it. My dad dug the dog’s grave AND LET THE DOG WATCH. Then the vet came and checked the dog and said it was a false alarm. Oops! Dog’s fine! Everything about this is insane. Twitter | Threadreader
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 8:27 AM - 4 comments

How 'Bout That Jive

Let's listen to Ernestine "Tiny" Davis and the integrated, all women's band the International Sweethearts of Rhythm tear it up with a body-positive love song from 1947, How 'Bout That Jive. [more inside]
posted by jedicus at 7:27 AM - 3 comments

Pysankas, or, Ukainian Easter Eggs

They have a history. And, with the right tools and patience, they can be made at home. (TLDR version) Happy Easter.
posted by BWA at 7:25 AM - 9 comments

April 20

"Where would we be without the words of Japanese women?"

Works by Japanese Women is a 12 part series by Kris Kosaka for The Japan Times on Japanese female authors, starting with an introduction. The articles all focus on writers who've been translated into English. The contemprary authors are Hiromi Ito, Mieko Kawakami, Yuko Tsushima, Kaori Ekuni, Takako Arai, Nahoko Uehashi and Yoko Tawada. Earlier writers featured in the series are late 19th Century short story writer Ichiyo Higuchi, feminist playwright and novelist Fumiko Enchi and the series ended with an encouragement to read the thousand year old works of Sei Shonagon and Murasaki Shikibu. The series also included a profile of the pioneering feminist magazine Seito.
posted by Kattullus at 3:08 PM - 8 comments


"It can be taken quite seriously and even has its own set of official rules, drawn up over 30 years ago by the ... (WEJA). The world championships are held annually every Easter Sunday and the coveted title is competitively fought over by contestants of all ages. Apparently there are certain breeds of hen which lay harder egg shells and competitors have been known to feed their hens calcium-rich foods in the run up to the competition." Jarping is a North Eastern (uk) egg-cracking tournament. Here's another summary from the Guardian. And here is the finals of the World Egg Jarping Championship from Peterlee in 2013 (SLYT)
posted by glasseyes at 2:54 PM - 11 comments

Secrecy, Self-Dealing, and Greed at the N.R.A.

The NRA is millions of dollars in debt, but seems to have deeper troubles. Most of their money is spent on high salaries and high living for NRA insiders, much of it funneled through a public relations firm, Ackerman McQueen, which kicks back much of the money those same insiders. It's similar to the executive pay scandals at the Susan G. Komen Foundation and the Red Cross, but carried to a whole new level. Previously, there were thoughts and prayers for them here.
posted by Bee'sWing at 12:40 PM - 40 comments

Star Trek episode, Dave Eggers book, or Mountain Goats song?

Test your Trekkie / literary / indie rock cred with this quiz: Star Trek episode, Dave Eggers book, or Mountain Goats song? As its MeFite creator duffell wrote, "there's no real joke except that all three of these things tend to have delightfully overwrought titles." [via mefi projects]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:19 PM - 24 comments

Fixing Up Waco

Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of the hit TV show Fixer Upper are not the only people investing in the physical and spiritual "restoration" of Waco, Texas. In a long article for Buzzfeed, Anne Helen Petersen investigates who is being included and who is being left out of efforts by members of the Gains's Antioch Baptist Church to transform Waco. [more inside]
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 10:59 AM - 17 comments

“Now you are playing with power! PORTABLE POWER!”

The Game Boy Turns 30 [The Verge] “On April 21st, 1989, Nintendo unleashed the Game Boy on the world, forever changing video games. The unassuming gray brick may not have been a technical powerhouse, but it helped take the idea of portable gaming mainstream, paving the way for the world of mobile gaming and hybrid devices like the Switch.” [YouTube][Original Gameboy Commercials] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 10:44 AM - 16 comments


“Make it work, then make it beautiful, then if you really, really have to, make it fast. 90% of the time, if you make it beautiful, it will already be fast. So really, just make it beautiful!” Joe Armstrong, inventor of the influential (and beautiful) Erlang programming language, has died. [more inside]
posted by swift at 9:29 AM - 23 comments

Ask And Listen

“What set worker’s inquiry apart from these other empirical studies was the belief that the working class itself knew more about capitalist exploitation than anyone else. It is the “workers in town and country,” Marx thought, who “alone can describe with full knowledge the misfortunes from which they suffer.” The Worker’s Inquiry (Viewpoint) “No one wants to talk, but everyone’s got something to say. I can feel it, a shared heaviness sitting on all of us, invisibly filling the room like a gas leak. But no one really knows how to articulate it or what to do with it.“ Can The Working Class Speak? Maximilian Alvarez on what talking to other workers, and his own father, taught him - Working People episode with his father (Sequel) - “I always thought it was just going to be the younger people, but no, it’s a lot of people my age or older, and it’s sad. ” excerpts from Alvarez’s interviews with working people. The Working People Podcast
posted by The Whelk at 9:21 AM - 1 comment

How Dungeons & Dragons somehow became more popular than ever

Yes, D&D is back. But it’s cool now (sort of). And legions are into it, including an unprecedented number of adult and female players, attracted by a popular recent revamp and new online playing options. It’s the ultimate sign that nerd culture is now mainstream. The game’s popularity has waxed and waned over its 45-year history. But in 2018, its developers, Wizards of the Coast, sold more units than ever before.
posted by octothorpe at 7:52 AM - 48 comments

"They says it’s a phase, but a phase becomes a life"

Toad, a 20-year-old Danish woman living in Copenhagen, has been lonely her whole life. She is autistic, and as a child, did not have any friends. When she moved from the country to the city, not much changed. “They says it’s a phase, but a phase becomes a life,” she says, surrounded by six other young adults in a cozy apartment in Copenhagen—all of whom are working on becoming less lonely. Toad is among the attendees of Ventilen, or “friend to one” in Danish, a 20-year-old organization set up to bring 15-to-25-year-olds together twice a week with two or three volunteers. Together, the people in the group play games, make meals, go to the cinema, and build the human connections that many feel they lack. (Jenny Anderson, Quartz)
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 6:43 AM - 5 comments

Looks good enough to eat... but don't.

German LEGO fan Beryll Roehl has a fascination with a period in LEGO's history when the company sought to improve the quality of their bricks. These rare fifty-year-old-plus bricks come in some fascinating colors and textures. LEGO fan site The Brothers Brick has an interview with the artist here.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 6:39 AM - 3 comments

"Super Mario Bros. 64"

After seven years of work, a reasonably accurate port of Super Mario Bros. has been made for the Commodore 64. YouTube.
posted by JHarris at 2:35 AM - 27 comments

April 19

Daikon on Instagram

I didn't know that there are so many kinds of daikon
posted by growabrain at 10:30 PM - 13 comments

What is best for your kids is what works for you

"Many of the benefits cited do have some basis in evidence, just not always especially good evidence. And even when the evidence is good, the benefits are smaller than many people realize." An economist looks at the statistical evidence for three hot-button "best practices" in baby-rearing.
posted by drlith at 6:35 PM - 31 comments

The World We Live In and The World We Dream Of

In 2010, singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell released a folk opera concept album called Hadestown, based on live performances by Mitchell, her collaborator Michael Chorney, and a 22-person cast. Nine years later, after an off-Broadway production at the New York Theatre Workshop in 2016 and revised productions in Edmonton, Canada and London, England, Hadestown opened on Broadway on March 17 of this year. It was developed for the stage and directed by Rachel Chavkin, best known for directing the musical Natasha, Pierre, & The Great Comet of 1812. The NYTW production was also recorded, and released under the title Hadestown: The Myth. The Musical. [more inside]
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 11:50 AM - 21 comments

that which man had made to hunt himself

an entire pack of Boston Dynamics robot dogs [more inside]
posted by numaner at 10:00 AM - 92 comments


Respect Is Coming
Respect World.
posted by hippybear at 9:40 AM - 19 comments

Lip Liners: Writers on the Power of Red Lipstick

"I have worn lipstick since long before he was born; every day, for many years. I can’t remember, though, when habit became ritual. I feel as though if I could, if I could pin down the moment that commenced a daily ceremony, I might demarcate between girl and woman with clear, metaphoric ease. But when and how do you become a woman? It is a long, raw process that doesn’t seem to end." That's Jessica Friedmann, one of a dozen writers included in this round-up from Longreads: When Lips Speak for Themselves: A Reading List on Red Lipstick. [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 7:38 AM - 38 comments

"Derry tonight. Absolute madness"

Northern Irish journalist Lyra McKee killed by gunfire amid clashes between police and dissident republican forces in Derry. Northern Irish police believe the New IRA are responsible for the killing and have opened a murder investigation. McKee had been a rising journalistic star: She had been named one of Forbes Europe's 30 under 30 in media in 2016 and had a two-book deal with Faber. Her writing focused on, among other things, her own memories of growing up gay in Belfast (which became a short film), the surge in suicide rates in Northern Ireland in the years following the Good Friday Agreement, efforts by families of those killed during the Troubles to find answers, and the still-fragile power-sharing agreement between unionist and republican factions in Northern Ireland. McKee was 29 years old. [more inside]
posted by Cash4Lead at 7:38 AM - 57 comments

A Brief History Of Cooties

A Brief History of Cooties, courtesy of the Smithsonian Why a 100-year-old game is still spreading across our playgrounds. (Reading this article reminded me I actually had this game when I was a kid. How odd.)
posted by gudrun at 7:34 AM - 27 comments

it wasn’t really sci-fi because it was beautifully written

Why are authors still sniffy about sci-fi? Ian McEwan’s latest novel, Machines Like Me, is a fiction about science – specifically, artificial intelligence. It is set in an alternative reality where Alan Turing does not kill himself but invents the internet instead; where JFK is never assassinated and Margaret Thatcher’s premiership ends with the beginning of the Falklands war. The near future of the real world becomes the present of the novel, giving McEwan the space to explore prescient what-ifs: what if a robot could think like a human, or human intelligence could not tell the difference between itself and AI? Machines Like Me is not, however, science fiction, at least according to its author. “There could be an opening of a mental space for novelists to explore this future,” McEwan said in a recent interview, “not in terms of travelling at 10 times the speed of light in anti-gravity boots, but in actually looking at the human dilemmas.” There is, as many readers noticed, a whiff of genre snobbery here, with McEwan drawing an impermeable boundary between literary fiction and science fiction, and placing himself firmly on the respectable side of the line.
posted by octothorpe at 7:22 AM - 128 comments

“Hotline Miami redone as a side-scrolling action-puzzle-platformer,”

A Cyberpunk Ninja Game Where You Manipulate Time [Kotaku] “Katana Zero, a 2D action-platformer out today for Switch and PC, revolves around a time-manipulation idea that cleverly envelops both the story and the way you play. You play as a bathrobe-clothed samurai in a grimly pessimistic future city, a contract killer dependent on a drug dispensed by a sympathetic-seeming psychiatrist. The drug gives you the power to see forwards and backwards in time, letting you rewind after every death and slow down time to deflect bullets, but also prompts distressing hallucinations.” [YouTube][Game Trailer] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 5:03 AM - 9 comments

The appropriate place for regulation is where there is market failure

A Regulatory Framework for the Internet - "There are, in Internet parlance, three types of 'free'... Facebook and YouTube offer 'free as in speech' in conjunction with 'free as in beer': content can be created and proliferated without any responsibility, including cost. Might it be better if content that society deemed problematic were still 'free as in speech', but also 'free as in puppy' — that is, with costs to the supplier that aligned with the costs to society?" [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 1:01 AM - 33 comments

April 18

They Got Magic and Flair

Critical Role, a 4 year old web series airing 7pm PDT Thursday nights in which a bunch of nerdy ass voice actors play Dungeons and Dragons, launched a Kickstarter on March 4th to fund an animated special. [more inside]
posted by booksherpa at 11:59 PM - 47 comments

Tell me about a complicated man

Pour One Out For Ulysses S. Grant, Adam Gopnik inThe New Yorker:
Though he [Ron Chernow] does the usual justice to the military saga of the Civil War, and Grant’s decisive part in it, his book aims to rehabilitate Grant as a politician and as President. He makes a convincing case that Grant actually behaved nobly, even heroically, while in the White House. He pressed the cause of black equality under the law, and was consistently on the right side of Reconstruction-era issues—winning more heartfelt praise from Frederick Douglass than Lincoln ever did.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:18 PM - 31 comments

"This is stressing me out!"

If you've ever tried a recipe and wondered why it wasn't as easy as the video made it seem, you may appreciate the Behind Tasty series on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by Lexica at 8:36 PM - 10 comments

In Kākāpō breeding season news…

Kākāpō (previously on MetaFilter) are having a record breeding season: more than 76 chicks have hatched from 49 out of the 50 breeding females. Since there are only 147 adult Kākāpō on the planet (so few that Wikipedia lists every one of them by name) this is a very big deal. And in breaking Kākāpō news, Solstice just laid another 3 eggs last night - her third nest this year!
posted by simonw at 8:03 PM - 20 comments

Why I Take All My First Dates to Olive Garden

When I meet women on dating apps, I always want to know if I can take them to the Olive Garden, my treat. It’s a solid opener; a way to know if we’re compatible. If they’re the right kind of woman for me, they’ll respond with an enthusiastic yes.

The right kind of woman for me is someone who won’t give me a hard time about the things I like. The kind of woman who will let me pocket all the leftover breadsticks and doesn’t care if we only discuss our favorite sexual positions and what kind of appetizers look best off the limited-time-only menu. We’re at Olive Garden because it’s kitschy and cute. Nothing that happens needs to be a serious thing. It’s no big deal.
[more inside]
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 5:59 PM - 131 comments

What is a lot of money?

Last week, James Holzhauer absolutely crushed the single-day winnings record for Jeopardy! [more inside]
posted by allkindsoftime at 3:06 PM - 52 comments

The Secret City and the Return of Heroes

On November 30, 2012, the MMORPG City of Heroes shut down after a three-month sunset period; its owner, NCSoft, refused to sell the IP to someone else to continue the game, or even keep legacy servers up. Rumors of sale of the IP since then haven't come to anything, and there's been some work on reverse-engineering of the servers with various projects. However, all such efforts were rocked recently at the revelation that the game was only mostly dead--a private server running a bootleg copy of the server code has been in operation for six years. [more inside]
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:01 PM - 25 comments

A glimpse into the OTHER side of a true renaissance man; Greg Popovich

Michelin restaurants and fabulous wines: Inside the secret team dinners that have built the Spurs' dynasty [more inside]
posted by indianbadger1 at 11:51 AM - 33 comments

Like a black cat sitting on top of her paws

A Perfectly Normal Interview with Carmen Maria Machado Where Everything Is Fine
The connection between narratives of vampires and narratives of women—especially queer women—are almost laughably obvious. Even without Carmilla, they would be linked. The hunger for blood, the presence of monthly blood, the influence and effects of the moon, the moon as a feminine celestial body, the moon as a source of madness, the mad woman, the mad lesbian—it goes on and on. It is somewhat surprising to me that we have ever imagined male vampires at all.
posted by chappell, ambrose at 11:39 AM - 26 comments

The Latin Typo That Gave Us the Temple of Ridicule; One Letter Matters

In the 1800s, French abbot-scholar Pierre Danet wrote a "complete dictionary of the Greek and Roman antiquities" that served as the basis for multiple dictionaries in European languages (Wikipedia). It included an entry on Aedicula Ridiculi (Google books; UMich text version), or a Little Temple of Ridicule, raised to the God of Joy and Laughter after the Romans laughed at the failure of Hannibal to lay siege to Rome. The building definitely exists (Google Streetview panorama), except it isn't a Temple of Ridicule. It's probably the tomb of Annia Regilla (Wikipedia), built nearly 400 years after Hannibal's invasion of Italy (Your Guide to Italy). The Latin Typo That Gave Us the Temple of Ridicule (Atlas Obscura)
posted by filthy light thief at 11:30 AM - 9 comments

The Radical Egalitarian Politics Of Weird Al’s "UHF"

There are days when I doubt that socialism will win. There are days when I think that running a print magazine on a shoestring budget with a group of oddballs is a doomed endeavor, that we will inevitably be crushed by the forces of rapacious capitalism. But then I think about UHF and I become more certain than ever that it can be done. Channel 8 will be driven off the air, and U-62 will emerge triumphant. Nathan J. Robinson (previously here, here, here, here, and here) of Current Affairs explains why 1989 cult classic UHF shows how collective enterprises succeed and why socialism produces superior culture. [more inside]
posted by duffell at 11:07 AM - 65 comments

Teen vandals' sentence: to read and write about literature

"The community blew up. Understandably. But you know, some of the kids didn't even know what a swastika meant. So I saw a learning opportunity. With children you can either punish or you can rehabilitate and these were kids with no prior record and I thought back to what taught me when I was their age, what opened my eyes to other cultures and religions… and it was reading." Two years later, prosecutor Alejandra Rueda reflects on the "reading disposition" she assigned to teens who painted racist and anti-Semitic graffiti on the Ashburn Colored School, a historically significant building in Virginia (now undergoing restoration and turned into a museum). The linked BBC article includes excerpts from a final essay by one of the teens. [more inside]
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:27 AM - 24 comments

Mapping Gothic France

Mapping Gothic France is a treasure trove of images of various types of Gothic structures (mostly churches) in France and England. There are other features, too. Narratives and historical tracking and comparison tools. It's a deeply textured website with a bit of an opaque interface. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 9:18 AM - 4 comments

hanging on by a thread

"O.K. Well, my name’s Vivian Zwick, and I’m 101 years old. And I came to this issue quite a long time ago." Did you know about abortion? "No, I’d heard about it, but I really didn’t know much about it. I didn’t start really working for it until about the early ‘60s, just the time that Governor Rockefeller in New York signed the bill to have abortion available to everybody — not in Missouri, but in New York State. So we were just delighted that there was actually a place where you could get an abortion here in America." As a growing number of states are introducing, moving, or enacting 6-week abortion bans, the NY Times Daily Podcast visits the Last Clinic in Missouri (transcript) and explores the Illinois option. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 6:46 AM - 12 comments

(Less Than, Approximately, Greater Than)

Why does Roman Mars' voice make some car stereos lock up and restart? In order to find out, Reply All creates the best lineup of podcasts in the business.
Less Than, Approximately, Greater Than, a cooking show with Samin Nosrat || 88% Parentheticals, hosted by Sara Koenig (it's about her mail (and her day)) || Carrot Space Carrot, a trek into the universe of carrots || 100% Related?, where Judge Goldman Sr. promulgates paternity pedantry || Blank + Blank = FUN, a very frank investigation into relationships with Kalila Holt
[more inside]
posted by rebent at 5:55 AM - 65 comments

April 17

Major report finds NZ's environment is in serious trouble

'Decades of denial': major report finds New Zealand's environment is in serious trouble (Eleanor Ainge Roy, Guardian)
A report on the state of New Zealand’s environment has painted a bleak picture of catastrophic biodiversity loss, polluted waterways and the destructive rise of the dairy industry and urban sprawl.
[more inside]
posted by Start with Dessert at 9:58 PM - 13 comments

The █████████ Mueller Report

Attorney General William Barr to hold press conference Thursday as Mueller report expected to drop (CNN) Your guide to Mueller's report on Trump: What's in it, what's not and what comes next (NBC); Marcy Wheeler’s primer How to Read the Mueller Report (“The first step is to know what is supposed to be in there and what isn't supposed to be in there -- something a lot of people get wrong.”); Justice Dept. to release two versions of redacted Mueller report (CNN); 25 Subplots to Watch in the Mueller Investigation (Politico); Memo to the Press: How Not to Screw Up on the Mueller Report (Lawfare); Maxing It Out for Trump Josh Marshall (TPM) on how the fix is in. This is the US politics megathread. [more inside]
posted by zachlipton at 9:26 PM - 632 comments

Now, Tracey, let's not rehash the coroner's report.

Heathers, the classic dark comedy, has turned 30.

AV Club: Heathers' director, writer, and star reflect on its legacy after 30 years
AV Club: How the Heathers team crafted the definitive teen satire
New Yorker: “Heathers” Blew Up the High-School Comedy
Variety: Why Winona Ryder’s Agent Begged Her Not to Do the Subversive Teen Movie
The Independent: Will this kind of movie ever be made again?
posted by Chrysostom at 8:36 PM - 58 comments

The Truth About Dentistry

"It just adds to the whole idea that you go to a physician feeling bad and you walk out feeling better, but you go to a dentist feeling good and you walk out feeling bad.”
posted by trillian at 6:51 PM - 80 comments

A subjective photographer

Heinz Hajek-Halke - (NSFW) - was an experimental photographer who joined the newly founded German post war Fotoform group.
Picking up where Bauhaus left off.
posted by adamvasco at 6:07 PM - 5 comments

When Panoramas Backtrack

Who doesn't love a good panoramic shot - this phone technology is perfect for capturing gorgeous meadows, hilltops or colorful deserts. Still landscapes can be captured with ease at just a touch of a button and scan with a steady hand - but what happens when you want to photograph an object that has a little bit more trouble sitting still - like your precious pets - well, you end up with a creature that has eight legs, two heads, and six tails! (SLBoredPanda)
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 1:38 PM - 28 comments

studies British big cats alongside mythical creatures

On the trail of Britain’s wild big cats [The Guardian] "Hundreds of big cat sightings have been reported in Britain in the last three years. But is it pumas and panthers running wild – or our imagination?"
posted by readinghippo at 1:18 PM - 20 comments

"without first getting some kind of serious ethical guidance."

Scientists revive pig brains somewhat in the lab. "a surprising amount of cellular function was either preserved or restored." (Caution: does involve some discussion of animal slaughter, not gratuitous)
posted by Rufous-headed Towhee heehee at 12:35 PM - 51 comments

I just really like this genre

Lucy Lang, former Manhattan prosecutor, reviews 30 courtroom scenes from TV and movies
Alex Honnold, only person to free solo El Capitan, Breaks Down Iconic Rock Climbing Scenes
Dr. Ali Mattu, clinical psychologist, Reviews Mental Illness In Movies
Bear Grylls Reviews Survival Movies
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:09 PM - 38 comments

« Older posts