February 2021 Archives

February 28

Electronic Plastic

Browse through pics & details in the museum of more than 900 handheld and tabletop games, from the 70s and 80s.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 4:02 PM PST - 40 comments

‘Like a Warm Hug From an Angel'

For a handful of cultures across the globe, the Arab world among them, these distinct blankets deliver not only an impossibly warm, soft hug but a great sense of belonging. [slNYT] Subhi Taha wanted to give a special thanks last week to what he called the “one and only reason” he didn’t suffer frostbite during the destructive and deadly winter storm that recently left millions without heat in Texas, where he lives. “That thing is this blanket,” Taha said on TikTok, pointing behind him to an ornate hunter green and rose pink bedspread printed with large flowers.
posted by Ahmad Khani at 1:39 PM PST - 55 comments

"a tacit understanding that we’re all here to help one another..."

"Throughout the 70s and into the 90s, groups around the world helped hapless users figure out their computer systems, learn about technology trends, and discover the latest whiz-bang applications.... the meetings often happened IRL." [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 12:11 PM PST - 14 comments

"Let me tell you this right now, Donald J. Trump ain't going anywhere."

The Conservative Political Action Conference, better known as CPAC, wraps up today with the first post-presidential speech from Donald Trump. [more inside]
posted by box at 9:27 AM PST - 181 comments

This Is the Way

Interview: Saikat Chakrabarti, creator of the Green New Deal - "He also discovered AOC, served as her chief of staff, and co-founded the Justice Democrats." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 9:26 AM PST - 19 comments

"They took a chisel to God"

"...it was the kids who took their faith the most seriously who eventually walked away. Those of us who tearfully promised that we would follow Jesus anywhere eventually followed him out the door. The Queer kids, more than anyone, learned exactly what it meant to work out our faith with fear and trembling." [more inside]
posted by clawsoon at 6:59 AM PST - 73 comments

"Everything has kinetic potential"

Tights! Spatulas! Action! The madcap world of chain reaction videos (The Guardian) - a very enjoyable showcase of the work of three full-time chain-reaction artists, featuring Joseph Herscher (previously), Steve Price (previously) and Lily Hevesh (previously).
posted by bitteschoen at 6:11 AM PST - 7 comments

Flim is the Thing

Flim is a movie search engine currently in beta that returns screenshots from movies based on keywords. [Via Kottke & Boing Boing & Recomendo]
posted by chavenet at 3:05 AM PST - 16 comments

Concerning Beards

Dr Alun Withey, an historian of medicine and the body, has been researching pogonotomical matters - see, for example Beard Fashions and Class; To Dye for! Colouring the Beard in the 19th Century; The ‘Toilet Arts’: Men’s Personal Grooming and Advice Literature in the 19th Century; Barbers and Shaving in the Eighteenth Century and Shaving the Dead in Irish Folklore. Moreover, Dr. Withey's recent book Concerning Beards: Facial Hair, Health and Practice in England, 1650–1900 is available electronically as a free-to-download open access edition. [more inside]
posted by misteraitch at 2:13 AM PST - 7 comments

February 27

3 Mules

Who are we? We are the Mules. Where are we from? We are from the outside. We live outside all day, every day. Where are we going? Nowhere. We’re here: the outside, the web of life, the beautiful earth, a place like no other. We have come to this place, a place of golden sparkling light, a place for anybody and everybody. Give your faith, hope and energy to this place at which time you connect to it and receive the magic and endless possibility of infinity. As you walk in this place with these mules you spread the awareness that this beautiful earth, like no other, can only be protected by the way we live one day at a time. [more inside]
posted by aniola at 7:49 PM PST - 19 comments

Dance like everyone's watching

Bhangra fan Gurdeep Pandher of Yukon sends all of us a snowy dance of joy, hope and positivity (YT; Twitter link here). “I'm trying to spread happiness and hope through my videos,” he says. “I find it very important especially after the pandemic so that people can find a moment of joy. The second thing which I am passionate about is creating cross-cultural bridges like bringing people together. Especially after some recent news and all that stuff.” [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 1:50 PM PST - 15 comments

Hebrew recital of the Scroll of Cham-Steam in the manner of the Megillah

Megilat Ḥam-Ed — the Scroll of the Steamed Portions of Cham — And this scroll, the Scroll of Cham-Steam, was written and sealed by the hand of Isaac Harel son of Jael and Abraham Meir the priest, in the thirty-second year of the family of the sons of Simp. May the lord be unto us a help, a help!
posted by Kattullus at 1:39 PM PST - 17 comments

Gavin Bryars -- Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet

Gavin Bryars -- Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet (audio only) [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 12:54 PM PST - 18 comments

This is not the language of gratitude

The "Essential Worker" Swindle "People say we're heroes and everything -- but it doesn't feel like we're heroes. It feels like we don't have a choice." [more inside]
posted by RobinofFrocksley at 11:28 AM PST - 24 comments

"In the evenings it’s not PG-rated..."

"There only a few hundred lockmasters employed throughout the United States, and most of them are in the industrial waterways of upstate New York." Originally, "lockmasters literally lived the jobs much like a lighthouse keeper of the day did—constantly on watch, available to take quick action in case of a river-related emergency day or night." (pdf) The last lockmaster moved out of their on-site lockmaster house in 1990. The Mississippi River promises nine feet of navigable depth along its entire length for shipping, and this requires a system of locks and dams, the last of which is in St. Louis Missouri. People who do these jobs start out as a lockman (even the women) and then graduate to being a lockmaster. [via]
posted by jessamyn at 11:22 AM PST - 19 comments

Yaupon, South Seas Tea, Apalachine: North America's forgotten tea

Yaupon: The rebirth of America's forgotten tea (BBC) It is North America's only known native caffeinated plant and once threatened the British East India Company. So why has the world forgotten about it?
posted by not_the_water at 10:34 AM PST - 29 comments

10 PRINT "Classic Computer Games, No BASIC Required"

In the early days of computing, downloading software was iffy at best. Instead, the most common way of distributing a program for home users was a type-in listing, typically in BASIC. Those of us with Eighties 8-bit home computers often purchased the yellow BASIC Computer Games (originally published in 1973), and it's red-covered sequel, More BASIC Computer Games*. Listings for classic games like Super Star Trek could be found. A new effort is underway to implement these games in modern computer languages, such as C#, Java, or Python. You can get the code (or contribute) at Coding Honor's GitHub. If you prefer, you can also use the classic code with Commodore BASIC on your Windows, MacOS, or Linux systems.
posted by MrGuilt at 8:23 AM PST - 55 comments

February 26

Is Your Vaccine Card Selfie a Gift for Scammers?

You finally got your vaccine, and you’re excited to share the proof. Here’s why that may not be a good idea. "Someone who is not yet vaccinated or does not want to be could be “tempted to forge a copy from these photographs,” she said. “Or why wouldn’t an entrepreneurial scammer use the photographs to create counterfeits to sell to those who want them?” The Better Business Bureau, in its warning, cited newspaper reports in Britain that said that fake vaccination cards were purchased on eBay for about $6.
posted by folklore724 at 5:32 PM PST - 75 comments

But, wait, are these toys circular? Neigh.

Here's a five minute German-language video about making, inter alia, little wooden horses with a lathe.
posted by cortex at 3:04 PM PST - 43 comments

Four ways Zoom interaction overwhelms our brains

Jeremy Bailenson, founding director of Stanford’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, noticed how quickly Zoom fatigue arose as video conferencing became commonplace during the pandemic. His open-access article explores why: Nonverbal Overload: A Theoretical Argument for the Causes of Zoom Fatigue from Technology, Mind, and Behavior, 2(1). https://doi.org/10.1037/tmb0000030. [more inside]
posted by Jesse the K at 1:05 PM PST - 75 comments

Wizards and Wool

An RPG themed shaggy dog story about book binding, economics, pre-industrial library science, animal husbandry, Wizard Cheese and the politics of Big Parchment. [more inside]
posted by mark k at 12:10 PM PST - 18 comments

Brian Eno -- Discreet Music

Sides 1 & 2 of

Brian Eno -- Discreet Music

Brian Eno -- Three Variations on Pachelbel's Canon in D [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 11:42 AM PST - 32 comments

All happy online communities are alike . . .

A Life-Cycle Perspective on Online Community Success. In 2009, Iriberri and Leroy surveyed 27 peer reviewed, empirical articles about online communities and identified four stages of online community development: 1. Inception 2. Establishment 3. Maturity 4. Mitosis (or death) The original article [PDF] makes for fascinating reading, and has been cited 456 times. Fortunately, various blog entries summarize the contents for us. [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 11:22 AM PST - 10 comments

Sexy Times With Wangxian

Virtual1979 may have achieved that magical poof simply by promising to keep expanding the number of fandoms they tag their fic into indefinitely, until they get bored or AO3 changes its policies. But if the site’s tagging infrastructure is altered or a blocking or filtering function is added, it will be hard not to see this episode through a cynical lens: That the OTW systematically rejected and bypassed the sustained voices of so many fans, including Black fans and other fans of color, for months — until their needs and desire for a safe space abruptly aligned with other fans’ annoyance and inconvenience.
How a million word, 1700 tag story is forcing AO3 to change its policies when anti-racism couldn't.
posted by MartinWisse at 10:59 AM PST - 43 comments

“For some, this might be old hat, and -for others- a revelation”

No Pun Included is a board game review YouTube channel and podcast run by Elaine and Efka.
As you’d expect, it features board game reviews, best-of-the-year assessments, Let’s Plays, and theme episodes like “It’s Time to Say Goodbye to Catan (and say hello to three other games)” and “Weird Games I Found At Essen Spiel”.
Earlier this year, on (one of) Lithuania’s Independence Day(s), Efka recorded an episode looking at Colonialism as a theme in board games.
posted by Going To Maine at 10:08 AM PST - 12 comments

Feeling Unsure Shouldn’t Make You an Imposter

Stop Telling Women They Have Imposter Syndrome. Writing in the Harvard Business Review (limited free articles), Ruchika Tulshyan and Jodi-Ann Burey examine how and why the idea of imposter syndrome has been approached as an individual pathology rather than a symptom of systemic issues in business culture. (h/t to Anne Helen Petersen's substack; "imposter syndrome" was coined in 1978 by psychologists Pauline Rose Clance and Suzanne Imes in their study The Imposter Phenomenon in High Achieving Women: Dynamics and Therapeutic Intervention. (pdf link)) [more inside]
posted by soundguy99 at 6:47 AM PST - 36 comments

“All great works of literature either dissolve a genre or invent one.”

Storytelling -- Harmon vs. McKee : "I realized the line accurately describes all stories I like, and also everything I attempt in my own fiction experiments, whether or not I succeed. Hitchhiker’s Guide, for example, dissolved the genre of space opera. Iain M. Banks’ Culture series resurrected and reinvented it. Storytellers who do one of the two things tend to do at least a little bit of the other as well, but tend to have a preference. It’s like being left or right-handed."
posted by snerson at 5:57 AM PST - 20 comments

Rumble in the Jungle

Do you think controller rumble in video games is stupid? What if you make it way stronger? (Via RPS)
posted by Alex404 at 12:28 AM PST - 36 comments

February 25

The Savor of Memory

When I left Iran for good in 1985, I carried two books in my massive suitcase. The first was a boxy little hardcover bound in black cloth: the collected ghazals of Hafez (which apparently every Iranian must own). The version was edited by the great modernist poet Ahmad Shamlu, and it was notorious for his controversial editorial choices, unadorned presentation on the page and blasphemous punctuation. The second book was also bound in black cloth. Roza Montazemi’s venerable cookbook, Honar-e-Ashpazi (The Art of Cooking) was bigger in size but lighter, because its paper was what we called kahi, or lower-quality straw paper, lightweight and liable to yellowing. [more inside]
posted by Ahmad Khani at 5:38 PM PST - 9 comments

Is It Time to Kill the Book Blurb?

The pre-publication endorsements—“dazzling!” “a masterwork!”—that litter book covers have long been a staple of publishing. Are they of any value or mere relics that deserve to go? There may be some upside to blurbs. One study from 2013, conducted by BookTrust, a U.K. reading charity, found that of the 1,500 adults surveyed in England, 40 percent choose what books to buy based on “blurbs/book covers,” more than any other aspect, including professional reviews and recommendations from friends and family.
posted by folklore724 at 5:21 PM PST - 64 comments

Hey, man!

Is it kosher to smoke weed on Purim?
posted by not_on_display at 3:46 PM PST - 21 comments

The Musician Comes First

Dave Grohl delivers the SXSW keynote, 2013.
posted by dfm500 at 3:38 PM PST - 7 comments

My Year of Grief and Cancellation

"If you were on Tumblr in the early 2010s, you may remember a blog called Your Fave Is Problematic. If not, its content should still sound familiar to you. The posts contained long lists of celebrities’ regrettable (racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, ethnophobic, ableist and so on) statements and actions — the stuff that gets people canceled these days. That blog was my blog."
posted by Ouverture at 3:24 PM PST - 46 comments

"the more elusive aspects of human experience"

Satanic Panics and the Death of Mythos by Aisling McCrea is an essay exploring how, in contemporary society, people want explanations that are "materially and logically and scientifically true", and ignore "non-literal or non-rational parts of our understanding of what is true: rituals, customs, superstition, storytelling, art, and transcendent experiences". She especially focuses on people's relationship with art, quoting Dan Olson's video essay Annihilation and Decoding Metaphor to explain how you can miss the deeper meaning of a piece of art, if you seek to explain everything logically.
posted by Kattullus at 2:20 PM PST - 35 comments

A Moment Of Accountability In Lansing

As part of her investigation into the abuses of Larry Nassar, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has announced charges of human trafficking, racketeering, lying to police, and sexual assault against John Geddert, the owner and operator of the Twistars gym where Nassar abused many of his victims. (cw: abuse, suicide) [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 1:52 PM PST - 14 comments

The Moomins as queer family

The unlikely queer family at the heart of the Moomins. "In recent years, Moomins creator Tove Jansson has become a queer icon. What her stories capture, says Elizabeth Lovatt, is the importance and joy of choosing your own family." [more inside]
posted by Biblio at 11:29 AM PST - 7 comments

The Dolly Moment

Tressie McMillan Cottom (previously) goes deep on Dolly Parton and how her "unproblematic fave" status is tied up in notions of race, gender, and class: The woman has earned her nostalgic moment in the sun; the question is whether we have earned the rose-tinted glasses through which we see her.
posted by Cash4Lead at 10:59 AM PST - 65 comments

How Pelé became more myth than man

Making a superhero: how Pelé became more myth than man , by Jonathan Liew in the Guardian. "Casa Pelé, the small two‑room house in Três Corações where Pelé was born in 1940, is now a popular tourist attraction. As no photographs or descriptions of the original house have survived, it was rebuilt entirely from the memories of Pelé’s mother, Dona Celeste, and his uncle Jorge, with period furniture and fixings sourced from antique shops. And so what greets visitors today is really only a vague approximation of the house where one of the world’s most famous footballers spent his earliest years: a heavily curated blend of hazy memories and selective detail. As it turns out, this is also pretty much how Pelé himself is remembered these days. It’s 50 years since he played his last game for Brazil. Only a fraction of his rich and prolific playing career has survived on video. The vast majority of us never saw him play live. And so for the most part, the genius of Pelé exists largely in the abstract: something you heard or read about rather than something you saw, a bequeathed fact rather than a lived experience, a processed product rather than an organic document."
posted by dng at 10:14 AM PST - 15 comments

Black history of science

Meet 7 groundbreaking Black scientists from the past From the first treatment for leprosy to the foundation of the global positioning system, Black scientists have long been involved in major scientific developments, despite being pushed to the margins, refused jobs, and denied credit for their discoveries. Here are a few of their stories.
How historical racism in science continues to shape the Black experience Science is meant to be objective. In order to be trusted, it is to be free of any bias or prejudice and simply rely on experimentation, observation and conclusions. However, that has not been the case when it comes to race. And centuries of scientific racism have been hard to shake — even to this day, where the effects are still being seen and felt.
posted by heatherlogan at 7:12 AM PST - 7 comments

February 24

The Ramsey Effect

The Ramsey Effect is an essay written by philosopher Kieran Setiya in the London Review of Books on (or at least inspired by) Cheryl Misak's book Frank Ramsey: A Sheer Excess of Powers. Previously on Metafilter. [more inside]
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 10:45 PM PST - 26 comments

Non-Metro Congress-people mover under the Capitol

US Senators and members of the House can ride a special system of below-ground trains in Washington, DC. One of them may utilize Linear Induction Motors, a fascinating form of electrical propulsion (with magnetic levitation, even) made possible by Triple Phase Electricity. [more inside]
posted by Rash at 4:43 PM PST - 26 comments

"I would pay $15 to go to this show rn"

We're Penn Jillette Men's Razors and this next song is called "Don't call me back unless you have the Glade refills".
For all those yearning to see (crappy) indie live shows once again, the latest Tik-Tok trend is a nice concentrated blast of nostalgia.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:12 PM PST - 19 comments

Some Theatrical Plays for You to Enjoy This Week and Next

The Irish Repertory Theatre is holding an online theatre festival. Cost is pay what you can. The offerings appear to be outstanding and include: Conor McPherson's The Weir.. Aedín Moloney & Colum McCann's Yes! Reflections of Molly Bloom. Geraldine Hughes' Belfast Blues. Bill Irwin's On Beckett. As well as Meet Me in St. Louis and Paul Durcan's Give Me Your Hand - A poetical stroll through the National Gallery of London, performed by Dermot Crowley & Dearbhla Molloy. [more inside]
posted by storybored at 12:25 PM PST - 9 comments

Feed your moths and hide your trousers

From an article in The Guardian by Hannah Marriott: There is a rip in the armpit of Orsola de Castro’s jumper. She raises her hand high in the air so I can see it: a slash of pale skin peeks from tomato-red wool. This “memory hole”, as De Castro describes it, tells the story of the jumper’s long life. It was owned by her cousin, then her daughter. “It is very old Benetton, from when Benetton was still made in Italy. You can’t see it on Zoom, but this is really nice wool,” she says, arm still aloft. [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna at 9:34 AM PST - 14 comments

I'm old enough to remember making my own blobs

Blob generator. Control the parameters of your custom blob. Does what it says on the blob tin. [via kottke]
posted by veggieboy at 6:34 AM PST - 24 comments

Fry's Electronics is closing

Fry's Electronics is closing. Fry's was a chain and it was not as niche a taste as WeirdStuff or Halted Supply, both of which preceded Fry's into oblivion. If you have not visited Fry's alien invasion themed store, or their Alice in Wonderland store, amused yourself trying to communicate your needs to one of their customer service representatives, or waited in the Christmas season lines, it is too late now.
posted by rdr at 3:39 AM PST - 149 comments

the party of voter suppression

'5-Alarm Fire': Arizona Republicans Lead Nationwide GOP Push To Curb Voting Rights - "Arizona Republicans have launched a 'full-scale assault' on democracy, voting rights groups warned, pointing to the introduction of bills that would restrict ballot access and overhaul the state's election system in the wake of major GOP losses in 2020." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 3:11 AM PST - 54 comments

February 23

"Push the button, Frank"

The Mads Are Back. Another new destination for riffing from the classic MST3K cast has appeared on the web. Frank Conniff (who has a quite lively twitter presence) and Trace Beaulieu have taken their show to the web, establishing a new YouTube channel that will host their future movie riffing endeavors. “Every second Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET,” Conniff and Beaulieu will be presenting ticketed livestreams on the site, with viewers free to tune in from around the world. Meanwhile, previous riffing projects from The Mads will be added to the YouTube account over time for free viewing.
posted by valkane at 10:10 PM PST - 19 comments

How It's Made

The Sesame Street Crayon Factory video. [more inside]
posted by cosmic.osmo at 9:03 PM PST - 26 comments

The death of the gay bar

Gay bars may, indeed, be a dying breed. Should we mourn their passing?
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 7:21 PM PST - 36 comments

Everybody wins, even the oysters!

Once destined for raw bars, 5 million oysters are being rerouted to coastal restoration efforts. [more inside]
posted by yeahlikethat at 4:07 PM PST - 34 comments

Britney Spears Was Never in Control

Content warning for abuse and assault. "If you, the viewer, share in that discomfort, you are just another misogynistic cog, using the veil of concern for your own puritanical need to control a young woman. This argument serves a narrative purpose. The central drama of Framing Britney is the conservatorship Spears has lived under since 2008, which allows her father to control her finances and personal life. By suggesting she once had complete control, the documentary fuels the sense of injustice when that control is then taken away. The result is a documentary eager to characterize Spears’s early image as an expression of female power rather than the corporation-sanctioned sexualization of a 16-year-old." [more inside]
posted by Carillon at 4:00 PM PST - 28 comments

Fanning the flames of union democracy

The heat is on in the election for the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF). Veteran opponent of Scott Walker's anti-public sector union efforts, Black progressive, and Bernie Sanders delegate Mahlon Mitchell has lit a match under favored Edward Kelly, white and traditionalist union leader, and veteran of the Air Force and national fire department deployment to the World Trade Center. To a degree, this election conflict is fueled by GOP vs Democratic conflicts, as Kelly, in his current role of Secretary Treasurer of the union, hired on Matt Golsteyn as his chief of operations. Golsteyn is better known as an admitted war criminal who was pardoned by Trump. Kelly's choice to shed light on long-smouldering rumors of multi-decade IAFF president Schaitberger's financial abuses, sparked this rare opening for new leadership, but under hazy circumstances that suggest collusion with conservative, anti-union forces.
posted by latkes at 3:13 PM PST - 5 comments

The Culture Wars Rage on Because of Generation X's Failure

We are in a temporal loop. George Santayana’s 1905 observation that “those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” remains (ironically?) indelible, but it isn’t even the half of it. [more inside]
posted by waving at 2:45 PM PST - 103 comments

A Visit From the Smiling Mortician

Lawrence Ferlinghetti died last night, age 101. [more inside]
posted by ALeaflikeStructure at 11:40 AM PST - 72 comments

Coming out of COVID is a chance to radically reimagine our societies

We need to engage with the two sides of any conscious change: imagination and experimentation. "Human beings find it easy to imagine an apocalypse or a disaster. But we struggle to imagine positive alternatives: what education, welfare, workplaces, democracy, or neighborhoods might look like in 30–40 years, or how we could make them radically better."
posted by folklore724 at 10:30 AM PST - 25 comments

Fabulous piano man Gene Taylor dead

Frozen to death in Austin: boogie-woogie pianist Gene Taylor, formerly with The Blasters, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Canned Heat and others. [more inside]
posted by kozad at 9:50 AM PST - 40 comments

The Heart of Darkness.

The killing in an ambush of the Italian Ambassador near Goma, Eastern Congo, a country plagued by Blood and Minerals has bought DRC into the spotlight again.
DRC President Felix Tshisekedi recently named mining executive and ally Sama Lukonde Kyenge as prime minister of the world’s biggest cobalt producer.
One of Trumps final acts was to roll back Treasury Department sanctions on the Israeli billionaire Dan Gertler for corruption in Africa; and who has recently purchased Cobalt royalties to the tune of $83 million. Gertler together with mining giant Glencore has interest in DRC.
DRC / China joint venture Sicomines, with whom Erik Prince, himself with other DRC interests, has recently announced a Security Project appears to have made payments to customs and logistics agencies controlled by Gertler or his associates while Gertler was already under US sanctions.
China dominates the Cobalt supply chain. [more inside]
posted by adamvasco at 5:02 AM PST - 11 comments

February 22

Talib Kweli Reflects on his Relationship with Kanye

GQ: Read Chapter 22 of rapper Talib Kweli's memoir, revealing some insight into his life and that of Mr. West.
posted by kfholy at 9:17 PM PST - 16 comments

Team Lindsay or Team Natalie

Tracing the Roots of Pop Culture Transphobia: Lindsay Ellis responds to ContraPoints' video on J.K. Rowling (previously). Also features voice cameos by HBomberGuy and Jenny Nicholson. [more inside]
posted by lock robster at 2:44 PM PST - 29 comments

The "jungle" is still dangerous - and demeaning

John Oliver's recent segment on the disgusting working conditions in the meatpacking industry (YouTube, USA only) is shocking -- or it might be to anyone who hasn't been paying attention. But eighteen years ago, anthropologist Steve Striffler worked undercover at Tyson Foods in Arkansas and found a racially segregated workforce already pushed to the breaking point by downsizing management (free essay). [more inside]
posted by jb at 2:03 PM PST - 32 comments

A credibility issue

Ahead of the 78th Golden Globes ceremony, the LA Times just published an investigation into the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, its history of scandals, its ongoing "ethical lapses" and the current controversy over the nominations for the much criticized Netflix series "Emily in Paris". [more inside]
posted by bitteschoen at 12:52 PM PST - 17 comments

NASA/JPL drop first-ever video of landing on Mars

On-board cameras catch Perseverance during entry, descent, and landing. Matt Wallace, Perseverance deputy project manager, credited having watched his daughter's GoPro-style footage of doing a backflip for the plan to put ruggedized commercial sports-POV cameras on the Perserverance rover for EDL. [more inside]
posted by bixfrankonis at 11:28 AM PST - 90 comments

90,000 Packages Are Stolen in N.Y.C. Every Day. How One Building Fought

For neighbors in the author’s East Village walk-up, “Have you had anything stolen?” turned out to be a great conversation starter. But matters came to an emotional head just before Thanksgiving, when I found Coco Ross, 23, crying on our stoop one afternoon. When I asked what had been stolen, she said softly, “A Rolex.” A Rolex? What was she thinking? Then I got the full story. Her father, in Boston, had lost his job and sent her the watch to get a better price in New York, as much as $25,000, she said. A delivery person dumped the family heirloom in our lobby, not waiting to get Coco’s signature. Footage of the thief was murky. The watch was never found.
posted by folklore724 at 10:19 AM PST - 130 comments

"This is the end of the road for the President."

SCOTUS denies Trump appeal to avoid turning over tax returns. [more inside]
posted by Your Childhood Pet Rock at 7:54 AM PST - 77 comments

Daft Punk: Epilogue

This new video from Daft Punk was released today. I gasped out loud at the climax of this clip. Is Daft Punk over? Sure looks like it.
posted by k_nemesis at 6:39 AM PST - 84 comments

Like Here, but Thicc

Have you heard of Terra 98? It is an imaginary worldbuilding project that has been going since 2016, with the premise, "what if like Earth, but bigger?". There have been forks, lots of lore, plenty to delve into. Scandanavia in 2016. Indochina. HRE at maximum extent, 1236. The Middle East. The Han Dynasty. Distribution of Camelids in the Western Hemisphere. Thicc Solar System. North America in 1770. The American Civil War. The New Hollander States of the USA. Discovered via Reddit's Imaginary Maps forum.
posted by Meatbomb at 4:21 AM PST - 5 comments

Bayes on the Brain

Some things in life are certain. For example, we all learn to identify colours at a young age, and can thereby say the same word when we point at a green object. Except that's not true - at all. To confirm that some thing is in the world, we can rarely (if ever) perceive it directly. Instead we gather indirect evidence, and hope to identify the presence of a tiger by the rustling of the grass. The mathematical theory of gathering indirect evidence about unknown things is known as Bayesian inference (Veritasium - main link?). [more inside]
posted by Alex404 at 2:42 AM PST - 24 comments

February 21

Knights in armour hide under eyeliner.

UCLA put out a fun video of their gymnastics team. That is all.
posted by Anonymous at 3:20 PM PST - 21 comments

A remote, lonely and desolate continent - Long may it remain so.

There is still a large portion of Antarctica that remains unclaimed today. Marie Byrd Land, a vast, remote territory is by far the largest unclaimed land area on Earth.
China’s long march to the South Pole is gaining attention and while the West has scaled back operations in the Antarctic, Russia and China have pushed ahead.
Major powers have never fought over Antarctica, however this may change driven in part by climate change.
In the Global Race for Antarctica is it going to be China vs. Rest of the World
Antarctica ~ some photos.
posted by adamvasco at 2:39 PM PST - 23 comments

People underestimate the craft

Monica Lewinsky inteviews Roxane Gay on writing about her (paywalled) new essay on writing about trauma, including the art of writing, the choices made while writing and the boundaries required. [more inside]
posted by lab.beetle at 9:22 AM PST - 15 comments

Aha! Let's dance in the basement!

The Basement Gang takes on energetic dancing (click on video to expand) [more inside]
posted by Gorgik at 8:24 AM PST - 4 comments

A bucolic scene

When Ireland went into coronavirus lockdown in March 2020, musician Patrick Dexter began posting online videos of himself playing the cello. Since then, the open-air recitals, shot outside his picturesque cottage in Mayo on the rural west coast, have been viewed millions of times. Here’s a video of Patrick interviewed on CNN by Christiane Amanpour a few days ago, and performing On Raglan Road. And here’s a previous short interview on BBC. Enjoy!
posted by bitteschoen at 7:48 AM PST - 5 comments

Make sure what you and your family are living through is not forgotten

Writing the COVID experience. The Pandemic Journaling Project hosts people recording their thoughts as they live through the COVID-19 era. [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 7:23 AM PST - 8 comments

Patrice O’Neal: Killing Is Easy

Patrice O’Neal Died Too Soon to Become ‘One of the Greats’—Or Get Canceled [Daily Beast] The first thing we hear O’Neal say in the documentary is, “I don’t mind a little racism.” It’s the setup for a joke about modern-day slavery, but at the same time, it’s a telling window into his comedic persona. O’Neal loved to shock audiences upfront with an aggressively honest admission and then try to win them back with laughs.

A new documentary, co-produced by Bill Burr, tells the story of the late stand up comedian - Patrice O’Neal: Killing Is Easy [US only]. [more inside]
posted by riruro at 6:25 AM PST - 23 comments

Friendly Distance Bundle

The Friendly Distance Bundle The Friendly Distance Bundle is a collection of 14 role-playing and role-playing adjacent games that are well-suited to social distancing and digital contact. [more inside]
posted by otherchaz at 4:44 AM PST - 8 comments

Deep Blue v. Garry Kasparov

The story of how a IBM exploited the passions and relationships of geniuses and then discarded them as soon as it stopped being profitable. [more inside]
posted by antihistameme at 12:11 AM PST - 31 comments

February 20

Let Us Give (Un)Thanks

25th February 2021 is the first Gray Day, a celebration of the writer and artist Alasdair Gray, on the 40th anniversary of his masterpiece Lanark. [more inside]
posted by deeker at 2:55 PM PST - 14 comments

Surly Bartender Not Included

I Miss My Bar. Ambient bar sounds so you can recreate your favorite haunt at home.
posted by Diskeater at 2:40 PM PST - 22 comments

Just a Dash

Just A Dash (Season 1, Season 2) is a cooking show (...for various definitions of "cooking" and "show") starring Matty Matheson. [more inside]
posted by backseatpilot at 1:01 PM PST - 11 comments

Person of the Year 2031

As the earliest viable brain scan, MMAcevedo is one of a very small number of brain scans to have been recorded before widespread understanding of the hazards of uploading and emulation. He is considered by some to be the "first immortal", and by others to be a profound warning of the horrors of immortality.
posted by simmering octagon at 12:32 PM PST - 118 comments

"A slice of classic British slapstick now written into music folklore"

It's been 25 years since Britpop legend Jarvis Cocker invaded the stage during Michael Jackson's performance at the 1996 Brit Awards and "wiggled his bum for a bit". [more inside]
posted by atlantica at 11:34 AM PST - 18 comments

Trump Hotel Employees Dish on Catering to Right Wing Elites

Trump Hotel Employees Reveal What It Was Really Like Catering to the Right Wing Elite

IMPOTUSx2 only visited one DC restaurant during his tenure: the steakhouse in his own hotel.
... when the star appeared, you had to stick to the script. A “Standard Operating Procedure” document, recently obtained by Washingtonian, outlined step by step exactly what to do and what to say anytime Trump dined at BLT Prime, the hotel restaurant.
[more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 11:25 AM PST - 113 comments

A Short History of Recent Anti-Asian Violence in the US

Anti-Asian violence in the US did not just start with the covid-19 pandemic, but it has escalated recently. In recent weeks, the Bay Area has gotten attention for many horrific, violent attacks on Asian elders in the community. It can be hard to separate the violence of anti-Asian racism from the violence of everyday poverty and neglect from the state. [more inside]
posted by toastyk at 9:08 AM PST - 32 comments

Seeing at the Speed of Sound

Lipreading, which makes one sense do the work of another, is a skill daunting to describe. Rachel Kolb, deaf since birth, shares its mysteries. Stanford Magazine from 2013, via Autostraddle.
posted by ellieBOA at 5:03 AM PST - 10 comments


Draw an iceberg and see how it will float. Inspired by a thread by Glaciologist Megan Thompson-Munson (@GlacialMeg) about how icebergs are often depicted in unstable configurations (indeed, common stock images of icebergs are impossible fakes), Joshua Tauberer (@JoshData) devised a tool that will flip & float your iceberg into a stable configuration. [more inside]
posted by Westringia F. at 4:24 AM PST - 32 comments

February 19

Six Days, over ten years later

First announced in 2009, but pulled by then-publisher Konami after public backlash, controversial tactical shooter Six Days in Fallujah has resurfaced with a new development studio, publisher and trailer. [more inside]
posted by subocoyne at 4:40 PM PST - 23 comments

Aftermath of the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh War

Azeris Wrestle Over Return to Abandoned Towns, Decades After First Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict With Armenia [WSJ] (non paywall)
Actually returning won’t be easy. Mr. Pashayev says he knows his $135-a-month in disability payments and pension paid to displaced people won’t be enough to reclaim the life he lost in Agdam three decades ago, when he was still a child.

Nagorno-Karabakh refugees see little chance of returning home after peace deal [Politico]
Nagorno-Karabakh authorities estimated 90,000 of 150,000 inhabitants fled. Many made their way to the Armenian capital, Yerevan, sheltering in hotels, schools and apartments of private citizens. The government is struggling to find accommodation for the rest. [more inside]
posted by riruro at 2:49 PM PST - 4 comments

Oh, this and that. You?

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez [D-NY-14] raised two million dollars in less than a day for Texas relief efforts. [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol at 2:08 PM PST - 75 comments

Taxing times

In time for tax season, will you qualify for a free return using TurboTax? Apparently not, due to dark pattern programming... [more inside]
posted by ec2y at 1:46 PM PST - 50 comments

Real-time dialogue between experimenters and dreamers during REM sleep

It's not, but this reads like the entrance to an ARG.* Instead of waiting for dreamers to tell us about a dream after it has ended, when they have transitioned to the waking state, we sought to obtain evidence showing that it is possible to interview them about their dreams at the time they are experiencing them. […] Demonstrating the viability of this “interactive dreaming”—when experimenter and dreamer communicate with each other in real time—would be a large step forward to promote future progress in dream research. [more inside]
posted by bixfrankonis at 12:00 PM PST - 13 comments

subtle wario

answer some questions and i'll assign you a niche lgbtq aesthetic [more inside]
posted by theodolite at 11:51 AM PST - 67 comments

What Menopause Feels Like

About half of the world's population will experience menopause, yet it's a period that can be isolating for a woman in their personal and professional life. Menopause marks the end of menstruation, and the changes that come with it are often not discussed openly. Short documentary (11 min) by Bronwen Parker-Rhodes.
posted by severiina at 11:00 AM PST - 45 comments

A Quite Possibly Wonderful Summer

Families will gather. Restaurants will reopen. People will travel. The pandemic may feel like it’s behind us—even if it’s not. Variant strains that increase the transmissibility of the virus could also throw these estimates off, Shaman noted. As the virus mutates, the reliability of immunity from prior infections also changes. The recent outbreak in Manaus, Brazil, suggested that even high levels of past infection didn’t necessarily protect a population for long. Fundamentally, we still do not know how herd immunity will work—if it even does. “The most important thing to remind ourselves of is that herd immunity is only relevant to consider if we have a vaccine that blocks transmission,” says Shweta Bansal, a biologist at Georgetown University. If it turns out that vaccinated people can still carry and spread the virus, then a group cannot assume that they are protected because people around them are vaccinated. It would mean that the finish line is not 70 percent, but 100.
posted by folklore724 at 10:38 AM PST - 70 comments

"We aim to alter your conscious state of mind"

The Guardian explores "the rise of dark Nordic folk": Heilung jam with Siberian shamans and play with human bones, while Wardruna record songs submerged in rivers and on burial mounds. Now this vibrant undergound music scene is finding a wider audience... thanks in part also to the soundtrack for the TV series Vikings. [more inside]
posted by bitteschoen at 10:18 AM PST - 24 comments

Paper mills are hijacking college websites

Actors working to the benefit of paper mills are infiltrating university systems via well-known vulnerabilities in their content management systems Paper mills have engaged in social engineering, by publishing “resource lists” such as “A list of scholarships for female students” or “A list of scholarships for students with special needs” aimed to persuade students with some legitimate information that is made available by university resource pages. This social engineering or “compromised recomposition,” what we define as instances in which a writer appears to have unknowingly recomposed and recirculated deceptive paper mill materials, includes fake scholarship/essay contests designed to harvest original student work.
posted by mecran01 at 9:55 AM PST - 15 comments

Our king is in another castle!

Chessformer (by Robert Alvarez) is a puzzle game that combines 2D platforming with chess. Can you maneuver your pieces through the level to capture the enemy king? (Runs in the browser; works on mobile and desktop.)
posted by mbrubeck at 9:48 AM PST - 24 comments

NP Complete

Zero Knowledge Proofs - "By their name, they are proofs that reveal absolutely no information to the verifier... at the end of it, you know nothing more than you knew before except that the claim I made was true... It seems counterintuitive to say the least because we somehow associate conviction with information transfer."[1,2,3] [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 8:42 AM PST - 39 comments

February 18

Super Monkey Ball: It's about the monkey inside

A Masterclass promo goes off the rails
posted by BungaDunga at 8:37 PM PST - 30 comments

The 902 achievements (and counting) of the Coalition Government

Via the Chaser (an ordinarily satirical Australian website), engineer and developer Matthew Davis crowdsources a list (with citations) of the Australian Liberal-National Coalition government's many 'achievements'.
posted by prismatic7 at 4:33 PM PST - 14 comments

The Bomb dot LOL

The Bomb dot LOL [via mefi projects]
posted by aniola at 3:20 PM PST - 11 comments

The Lockdown Showed How the Economy Exploits Women. She Already Knew.

As a scholar and activist, [Silvia] Federici is one of a cohort of thinkers who have, for decades, critiqued the way capitalist societies fail to acknowledge or support what she calls “reproductive labor.” She uses this term not simply to refer to having children and raising them; it indicates all the work we do that is sustaining — keeping ourselves and others around us well, fed, safe, clean, cared for, thriving. It’s weeding your garden or making breakfast or helping your elderly grandmother bathe — work that you have to do over and over again, work that seems to erase itself. It is essential work that our economy tends not to acknowledge or compensate. This disregard for reproductive labor, Federici writes, is unjust and unsustainable. [more inside]
posted by jshttnbm at 12:32 PM PST - 66 comments

A Couple Having Fun And Succeeding At Youtube

It started with a DIY rendition of Swan Lake, and Toyah Wilcox’s desire to keep her spouse Robert Fripp from getting sedentary during lockdown.
Now, the two do a recurring series of agony aunts videos, sunday-brunch electric covers of classic rock songs like “School’s Out”, “Welcome To The Jungle”, “Paranoid”,“Rebel Yell” and “Enter Sandman”, and wear many, many outfits.
Writing for The Quietus, Patrick Clarke has a puff-piece interview about this sweet li’l channel: “Couple Goals: Toyah’s Lockdown”
posted by Going To Maine at 12:23 PM PST - 38 comments

I met Death today. We are playing Calvinball.

Susie Derkins plays a game with Death
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 12:05 PM PST - 25 comments

Don't be a Disaster. But Disasters are Normal.

Unfortunate Investing Traits. In the aftermath of the Gamestop episode, some thoughts on markets and investing. "Napoleon’s definition of a military genius was “The man who can do the average thing when everyone else around him is losing his mind.” What he meant, I think, is that most wars are lost rather than won. The final outcome is driven more by one side’s blunder than the other’s brilliance. One screw up can overwhelm a dozen smart decisions that preceded it, so even if strategy is crucial the expert is rarely preoccupied asking, “How can I be great?” The obsession is, “How can I ensure I’m at least average and never a disaster during the most important moments?” And isn’t investing the same?" [more inside]
posted by storybored at 11:57 AM PST - 19 comments

salt box art to tide us over til the thaw

Juliet Ames and other local artists are decorating Baltimore's salt boxes. You can see a few highlights in this gallery from the Baltimore Sun (although you'll use up a one of limited clicks if you aren't a subscriber). [more inside]
posted by the primroses were over at 10:46 AM PST - 6 comments

The animals you judge bear you no ill will.

Animal Bastards: An Inquiry Into Anthropomorphism [via mefi projects]
posted by box at 10:46 AM PST - 26 comments

Dolly Nixes Statue.

There is a bill pending in the Tennessee Legislature to put up a statue of Dolly Parton. Ms. Parton, however, says no thank you. [more inside]
posted by JanetLand at 9:26 AM PST - 28 comments

Rupert Neve, 1926-2021

The Guardian: 'He was the Steve Jobs of audio': how Rupert Neve changed the sound of music. "Legendary pro-audio equipment designer Rupert Neve died February 12, 2021 due to non COVID-related pneumonia and heart failure. Neve’s passing brought to an end a career of more than 70 years that saw him create some of pro audio’s most revered, imitated and sought-after equipment, created for all corners of the industry, from recording to radio to live sound and more. As much an entrepreneur as he was an inventor, Neve’s legacy includes a slew of companies bearing his name, and it is no exaggeration to say equipment based on his designs will be used in studios around the world for decades to come. He was 94." (from the ProSoundNetwork obituary) [more inside]
posted by soundguy99 at 7:09 AM PST - 19 comments

Reply All is having its own reckoning now

PJ Vogt is taking a leave of absence and Sruthi Pinnamaneni is leaving Reply All immediately "The BA staffers’ stories deserve to be told, but to me it’s damaging to have that reporting and storytelling come from two people who have actively and AGGRESSIVELY worked against multiple efforts to diversify Gimlet’s staff & content." Eric Eddings describes the environment at Gimlet
posted by mecran01 at 6:19 AM PST - 103 comments

February 17

I thought I could do an American accent..

Accent Expert Gives a Tour of U.S. Accents: Part 1, Part 2 (WIRED) [more inside]
posted by kanuck at 10:40 PM PST - 101 comments

Facebook Bans Australian News

Australians woke up this morning to find that Facebook has commenced restricting publishers and people in Australia from sharing or viewing Australian and international news content. The announcement comes in response to proposed new laws in Australia that would force tech companies to negotiate with media companies over how much to pay them for news content. The ban hammer appears to have inflicted a lot of collateral damage, including blocking government agencies, unions and satirical sites.
posted by jjderooy at 2:19 PM PST - 164 comments

stonks + snacks = stacks? snonks???

posted by theodolite at 12:31 PM PST - 7 comments

The Rush Is Over

Rush Limbaugh dead of lung cancer at age 70.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 10:31 AM PST - 334 comments

Ruling Class Solidarity: Conflict & Growth at SFMOMA Reexamined

How museum collector-trustees recapture charitable donations. Sam Lefebvre on the financialization of art, racialized class conflict, offshoring of endowments, and more.
posted by niicholas at 10:14 AM PST - 6 comments

Well, They Blew Up the Chicken Man in [Jersey] Last Night

Now they blew up his house, too. [SLYT]
posted by chavenet at 10:06 AM PST - 11 comments

...everything is open, so you feel like you climb in open space

[TW: Acrophobia. Seriously.] Red Bull Film's 360 Ascent[48m] shows Janja Garnbret and Domen Škofic climbing, leaping, and falling on the 360 meter Trbovlje Power Station. There's a short exploration feature, too.
posted by SunSnork at 8:39 AM PST - 14 comments

The Secret Society of Lightning Strike Survivors

After the sudden and intense drama of getting hit by lightning, they suffered from devastating symptoms that wouldn’t go away. It seemed like no one could help—until they found each other. [via]
posted by ellieBOA at 7:41 AM PST - 21 comments

A Tale of Two City-States

The interaction of social mobilisation and trust in government in public health responses. - 'This paper compares the early pandemic response in Singapore and Hong Kong, two Asian city-states of similar sizes, a shared history of SARS, and advanced medical systems. Although both were able to contain the virus, they did so using two very different approaches. Drawing upon data from a cross-national, probability sample Internet survey conducted in May 2020 as well as media and mobility data, we argue that the different approaches were the result of the relative strength of civil society vs. the state at the outset of the outbreak.' [more inside]
posted by cendawanita at 6:22 AM PST - 5 comments

30 years in, The Silence Of The Lambs’ Jame Gumb still deserves better

A reluctant defense of Silence Of The Lambs' Jame Gumb (AV Club) "Yes, the directing is masterful, and the acting is damn near flawless. But these aspects come at the price of consistently elevating the worst piece of fiction to befall trans people". Harmony Colangelo writes about the problematic legacy of Silence of the Lambs as it celebrates its 30th anniversary. [more inside]
posted by bitteschoen at 4:51 AM PST - 70 comments

Hear me out: The Lion, the Wick, and the Wardrobe

“The thing that makes Wick so beautiful is that what he gets Pulled Back Into is not the standard revenge fantasy. Instead being Pulled Back In means literally entering another world, hidden within pockets of our own. Because in addition to being a great action movie, John Wick is a portal fantasy.”
posted by Ghidorah at 1:34 AM PST - 34 comments

Preserving Cinematic History

Driven to create amidst war and chaos, Afghan filmmakers gave birth to an extraordinary national cinema. Driven to destroy, Taliban extremists set out to torch that legacy. Using newly restored images from the Afghan Films Archive, Afghan-Canadian director Ariel Nasr tells the story of Afghanistan's fearless and visionary filmmakers including "Engineer" Latif Ahmadi and Siddiq Barmak. -Youtube, TVO Website. If you are not able to watch yet due to region-restrictions, this WP podcast tells a moving aspect of this story. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 12:52 AM PST - 2 comments

February 16

Did you know that California is 50.3% female?

Women Joining Corporate Boards in Record Numbers After Legislative Push
posted by aniola at 10:11 PM PST - 15 comments


The Wirecutter reviews chopsticks
posted by ShooBoo at 9:29 PM PST - 64 comments

From doctors to obese people

Everything You Know About Obesity Is Wrong.
Every discovery in public health, no matter how significant, must compete with the traditions, assumptions and financial incentives of the society implementing it.
[more inside]
posted by Mitheral at 7:32 PM PST - 64 comments

Cool Ink Stuff, x2

Sattelike, sattelite pictures of earth mimicked with pigments and natural inks
Ink as Eyes [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:25 PM PST - 2 comments

The ‘Trump Bump’ for Books Has Been Significant. Can It Continue?

There’s no doubt that publishers are likely to soon face the end of a very lucrative era. "In sheer volume, Trump books dwarf works released about the previous administration during its first term: There have been more than 1,200 unique titles about Mr. Trump published in the last four years, compared to around 500 books about former President Barack Obama and his administration during his first term, according to an analysis by NPD BookScan."
posted by folklore724 at 5:45 PM PST - 15 comments

Another robot buddy will be landing on Mars!

A new "Seven Minutes Of Terror" video from NASA outlining Perserverence's complicated landing on the Red Planet on Feb 18. [3m43s] We did this once already with Opportunity, let's see if we can do it again for Perserverence! [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 4:51 PM PST - 93 comments

Pa' decir la verdad no necesito estar borracha

Nathy Peluso, Argentina born, Barcelona based rap, trap, salsa, neo-soul, hip-hop, jazz, whatever. [more inside]
posted by signal at 4:42 PM PST - 2 comments

"When it comes to space travel, we are all disabled"

As part of its latest astronaut selection, the European Space Agency is seeking to recruit one or more 'Parastronauts' to examine and demonstrate the feasibility of selecting astronauts who would otherwise be fully qualified for spaceflight but who would be excluded from normal selection criteria by disability. [more inside]
posted by Major Clanger at 3:22 PM PST - 12 comments

Il Maestro

Federico Fellini and the lost magic of cinema, by Martin Scorsese
posted by brundlefly at 2:42 PM PST - 23 comments

Throw the Ball to Naturally

A List of Natural Experiments "Suppose you want to know whether being exposed to pollution stunts a child’s cognitive development. A university ethics board is unlikely to allow you to put some children into a treatment group, give them a hearty dose of pollution and then see what happens. Similarly, if you want to know how strong institutions affect long-run economic growth, you cannot assign good institutions to one country, bad institutions to a neighbouring one and then wait 300 years to watch it all unfold. Natural experiments can provide answers to these kind of questions." [more inside]
posted by storybored at 1:22 PM PST - 12 comments

What happened?

In 2101 February 16, 2001 war was beginning. Happy twentieth to All Your Base! Feel old yet?
posted by MartinWisse at 10:27 AM PST - 58 comments

The Rich Fool and the Race Scientist

A Great American Story of Money, Guns, Sex, Racism, Divorce, and Horse Breeding: Gabriel Rosenberg recounts the story of how real estate mogul William Earl Dodge Stokes and biologist Charles Davenport came together in the early 20th century to promote eugenics. Any resemblance to present-day political and intellectual currents is purely coincidental.
posted by Cash4Lead at 8:00 AM PST - 7 comments

Carnaval in South America

Carnaval is a Really Big Deal all over South America, and each region and ancestry has its own way of adding to present fun and cultural commemoration. Bolivia (note the multiple traditions). Lo de Callao en Venezuela.... [more inside]
posted by Sheydem-tants at 7:44 AM PST - 11 comments

Death from not enough pillows

A list of things women in literature have died from. I don't recognise all of them, except maybe Madame Bovary and The Yellow Wallpaper.
posted by antihistameme at 6:15 AM PST - 46 comments

Jerusalema: The Aftermath

Warner Music strikes back. Warner music is now demanding that companies and organisations, including hospitals and other health service organisations, pay licensing fees for taking part in the Jerusalema dance challenge. (previously). [more inside]
posted by Omnomnom at 1:20 AM PST - 31 comments

February 15

An iteration on the right to prioritze money over everything else

I recently learned about the "right to farm." These laws are in every state in the USA. These laws are pro-CAFO and pro-pesticide/herbicide spraying. California, breadbasket of the world, has a version of this law that doesn't allow counties to get stricter, meaning counties can't ban spraying. Hopefully it's easier to work on where you live. This article would have you know that the EPA says there's up to 70,000,000 pounds of pesticide drift every year. Here are the stories of some individual people and what right to farm means for them. Here is an organization working in California to make things slightly better. Here's a clever partial workaround. Here is a hopeful story about a place in Italy that banned pesticides. [more inside]
posted by aniola at 9:27 PM PST - 15 comments

Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Gospel of Saint Matthew

And here is Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Gospel According to St. Matthew [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 5:02 PM PST - 16 comments


A belated Valentine's Day post on exploring foldable words by Brian Hayes
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 1:06 PM PST - 15 comments

Have you ever felt excluded from the definition of a "rEaL GaMeR”?

In her video essay, Asmara walks through the "real gamer" stereotype and its implications. (slyt) [more inside]
posted by stripesandplaid at 12:41 PM PST - 34 comments

Bring Back the Nervous Breakdown

It used to be okay to admit that the world had simply become too much. "John D. Rockefeller Jr., Jane Addams, and Max Weber all had acknowledged “breakdowns,” and reemerged to do their best work. Provided you had the means—a rather big proviso—announcing a nervous breakdown gave you license to withdraw, claiming an excess of industry or sensitivity or some other virtue. And crucially, it focused the cause of distress on the outside world and its unmeetable demands. You weren’t crazy; the world was."
posted by folklore724 at 11:40 AM PST - 52 comments

When you’re privileged, consequence feels like oppression.

General Unstructured Thoughts On “Being Cancelled” - Scalzi breaks down what it means to be canceled, and why some people can’t handle it.
posted by Monday at 5:21 AM PST - 127 comments

D-Day (the other one)

On February 15, 1971, the currencies of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland finally went decimal. [more inside]
posted by Cardinal Fang at 4:05 AM PST - 56 comments

Dorktown Fights For Mathematical Literacy

In the latest edition of Dorktown, Rubenstein and Bois talk about when basic arithmetic failed baseball umpires, resulting in two strike strikeouts, three ball walks, and batters struck out on a count of 4 and 3. (SLYT)
posted by NoxAeternum at 3:31 AM PST - 9 comments

February 14

Same Energy

A visual search engine (in open beta) that finds images by style and mood. Try typing in colors, emotions, weather conditions, nouns, adjectives, and anything else you can think of, and see if it finds pictures with that same energy for you!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:28 PM PST - 35 comments

Oh No!

30 years ago today, Lemmings was release upon the world. Born of a demonstration that a walk cycle could work with an 8-pixel tall sprite, this green-haired phenomenon grew to become one of the most ported games in history. The series eventually went on to spawn a sequel, a Christmas version, and a 3D version among others. Though the license has languished under Sony for the last decade or so (mobile game aside), take a moment today to remember these green-mop-headed folks and their trials and tribulation. And enjoy their songs along the way.
posted by Zargon X at 8:59 PM PST - 35 comments

Ice, ice baby

With a large swath of the US from Texas to New England under a winter storm warning [WaPo; NWS], now seems like a good time to admire beautiful ice formations resulting from freeze/thaw cycles. If you don't find any in nature, geology professor (and scientific ice aficionado) James Carter has suggestions for extruding your own. [more inside]
posted by Westringia F. at 3:53 PM PST - 8 comments

It's named after its ATCO catalog number

Take the still smoldering remains of a defunct prog rock band, mix in an opinionated and talented South African, blend with a cutting edge music producer who has Brand New Toys to play with, and you end up with the most unlikely outcome: Yes' 11th studio album, 90125, which rose to chart dominance and likely kickstarted the entire "old bands get pop hits" string of the 80s. Listen for the first time, or listen again with new ears because it's been a while: this is a strong piece of music making! Side A: Owner Of A Lonely Heart [video], Hold On, It Can Happen [video], Changes [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 2:58 PM PST - 89 comments

so who is there left to trust?

Basilisk collection - From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia is a work of unfiction by Blackle Mori. [more inside]
posted by theodolite at 2:27 PM PST - 23 comments

Beloved Palestinian Poet and Memoirist Mourid Barghouti Dies at 76

Palestinian poet Mourid Barghouti, who was unable to return to his home in Palestine after 1967, was a beloved poet, performer, public speaker, and memoirist. He wrote the popular memoir I Saw Ramallah, which chronicled his return to the West Bank in 1997 and was translated by novelist Ahdaf Souief. He also wrote a follow-up memoir I Was Born There, I Was Born Here, which tells his story from 1998 to 2010, translated by Humphrey Davies. [more inside]
posted by Ahmad Khani at 12:32 PM PST - 13 comments

Novelists are writing for TV more than ever.

How it’s changing the industry “My editor broke the news to me that publishers’ profits, and therefore advances, were down, so most novelists were going to need two jobs,” Holman recalled. “I’d earned $9,000 on my writing the year before …. I needed one job that paid enough to live on.” Then she heard from a novelist friend who’d moved to L.A. and was making “big bucks” in an HBO writers room. “I decided to teach myself to write for TV.”
posted by folklore724 at 11:29 AM PST - 16 comments

I don’t see myself as anything extraordinary.

Julia Lillard is retired energy analyst, who started making digital collages in her 60's.
Self taught, living in Oklahoma and influenced by Hannah Hoch and Max Ernst, her output is a nostalgia of dada and surrealism from another era.
posted by adamvasco at 9:57 AM PST - 9 comments

Where in the world is me

If you were dropped into a random city somewhere in the world, could you guess where you were from context clues? City Guesser shows you a video from the point of view of a pedestrian walking through a city and asks you to guess where you think it is, then shows you how close you were. [more inside]
posted by rodlymight at 9:45 AM PST - 101 comments

thank you knitbone and sweetgrass and sunchoke and false indigo

Catalog Of Unabashed Gratitude,” a 14-minute collaboration between Bon Iver and poet Ross Gay. [more inside]
posted by youarenothere at 8:54 AM PST - 4 comments

February 13

Food for love concert

For the next 48 hours, the online concert for the New Mexico food banks is up at foodforlove.org. Artists include Santa Fe’s Bill Hearne, Jackson Browne, John Doe, Ray Wylie Hubbard, James McMurtry, David Byrne and many others. New Mexico is a poor state and now with Covid people are hungry. Enjoy the concert and please consider a donation.
posted by jabo at 7:48 PM PST - 15 comments

Two Jazz Horn Duos

Rather than playing identical melody lines in unison like Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, Baker and Mulligan complemented each other with counterpoint and anticipating what the other would play next. "My Funny Valentine", with a solo by Baker, became a hit and would be associated with Baker for the rest of his career. [more inside]
posted by rebent at 6:12 PM PST - 12 comments

Metareview Authorfilter

On Oct. 10, 1896, after years of robust literary coverage at The New York Times, the paper published the first issue of the Book Review. In the 125 years since, that coverage has broadened and deepened. The Book Review has become a lens through which to view not just literature but the world at large, with scholars and thinkers weighing in on all of the people and issues and subjects covered in books on philosophy, art, science, economics, history and more. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 1:38 PM PST - 2 comments

TexasFilter: weather’s comin’.

The entire state of Texas, all 254 counties, has been declared a state of disaster in advance of a pair of winter storms that will start to hit later this evening, through the weekend, and into early next week. “The bottom line is we’re expecting accumulating winter precipitation and brutally cold weather across all of Texas over the next several days.” -Texas Storm Chasers I know our neighbors to the north are accustomed to this. We are most certainly not, so we need to be extra careful. [more inside]
posted by ZakDaddy at 12:01 PM PST - 162 comments

People's Archive of Rural India

Can a project's success be judged on the basis of its never being completed? Yes, if it's a living archive of the world's most complex countryside. [...] It means an undertaking unprecedented in scale and scope, utilising myriad forms of media in audio, visual and text platforms. One where the stories, the work, the activity, the histories are narrated, as far as possible, as far as we can manage, by rural Indians themselves. By tea-pickers amidst the fields. By fishermen out at sea. By women paddy transplanters singing at work, or by traditional storytellers. By Khalasi men using centuries-old methods to launch heavy ships to sea without forklifts and cranes. [more inside]
posted by smcg at 10:57 AM PST - 3 comments

James E. Gunn, 1923-2021

Hugo-award-winning science fiction writer, anthologist, and scholar dies in Kansas. Gunn wrote short stories and novels, including The Listeners (1972) and The Immortals (1962) (turned into a tv series, 1970-1). [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 10:45 AM PST - 12 comments

The algorithmically powered in-home physical caching platform

shitbowl represents the translation of decades of computer science discoveries in information storage into the domain of physical artefact caching. Infinitely scalable, the platform acts to reduce mental load for users and consequently enhance cognitive performance across the board.
posted by automatronic at 8:48 AM PST - 29 comments

No names, sadly...

Worst people you've interviewed and why. Just a massive Twitter thread of journalists sharing their worst experiences interviewing someone famous. [more inside]
posted by bitteschoen at 2:51 AM PST - 62 comments

February 12

Add some goat to your meeting

A farmer who was half kidding when she suggested hiring out her goats out for Zoom meetings during lockdown has said making £50,000 shows it was no joke. (BBC). Reserve your goat for £5 here.
posted by ShooBoo at 9:17 PM PST - 22 comments

Traditional Korean Pottery

Via Kottke, two videos of Korean master potters, one making bowls, the other 옹기 (onggi) — specifically, clay pots in which kimchi (김치) is stored for fermentation. [more inside]
posted by kathrynm at 5:24 PM PST - 7 comments

The Difference is Still Clear and the Passion Behind it Palpable

“This process has been more fulfilling and emotional than I could’ve imagined and has made me ever more determined to re-record all of my music.” Taylor Swift Delivers Big F-You to Scooter Braun With Re-Recorded ‘Love Story’ [Daily Beast] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 4:21 PM PST - 40 comments

Howl's moving castle

A Twitter thread collecting a whole bunch of awesome chess variants
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 4:15 PM PST - 29 comments

Do you drive? Come meet the people who bike!

This is a post for connecting people who drive with people who bike. Tell us about your first bike ride. Tell us about your scariest bike ride. Tell us how it makes you feel to ride a bike. [more inside]
posted by aniola at 3:08 PM PST - 71 comments

Lancet Report Shines Klieg Light on Health Harms of Trump Era

New report details devastating impact of the Trump administration's health-harming policies, calls for sweeping reforms; roughly 40% of the USA’s coronavirus deaths could have been prevented. [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol at 3:02 PM PST - 15 comments

Deeply Intense Singing

Why Does Choral Music Sound So Good? "What makes the sound[of a choir], and in particular the sound of a professional group, so appealing? In this essay, I look at the science behind the notes to find out why choral music sounds so good. ...Professional choirs have the ability to take advantage of the astonishing complexity of the vocal machinery and can produce music that is not only perfectly tuned and harmonically rich but is also deeply intense. Singing is something that feels rooted deep in all of us, that taps into feelings of longing anguish and love brought into focus by the mesmerizing sounds produced by choirs across the world. [more inside]
posted by storybored at 11:06 AM PST - 18 comments

Maybe You Should Call Your Show Newsy Things Considered

Leo Shidla has a complaint. The 8 year-old NPR listener from Minneapolis recently pointed out a big problem with NPR's oldest news show, All Things Considered.
posted by JoeZydeco at 10:52 AM PST - 33 comments

It is once again Friday

On the occasion of its 10th anniversary, Rebecca Black has released a hyperpop remix of her smash viral song Friday featuring Dorian Electra, Big Freedia, & 3OH!3 and produced by Dylan Brady of 100 gecs. [more inside]
posted by mhum at 9:19 AM PST - 25 comments

"No More Jockeys is a three-pints-and-a-packet-of-crisps pub game"

No More Jockeys. Nine months, 29 episodes and nearly 1.5 million views later, No More Jockeys (S1E1, trailer) has become a lockdown phenomenon. There are rules. There are three comedians you may know from Taskmaster (Fanfare). And there is a lot of drinking. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 9:14 AM PST - 13 comments

Present Writers

[C.J.] Cherryh has been incredibly prolific for literally longer than I've been alive. She has over eighty novels and loads of short stories. She's won all the major awards. If Cherryh is not a Grand Master, the term has no meaning. | The Steerswoman series. There are four out already, apparently Rosemary [Kirstein] is at work on not one but two more (oh that is so hopeful), but the four that already exist make me so happy. | Nisi Shawl is a great example of a writer who has grown, changed, and expanded her horizons - and other people's - long past her debut. [more inside]
posted by smcg at 9:02 AM PST - 31 comments

They call me a teacher, but what I'm actually doing is studying.

RIP Chick Corea. You were a legend in your lifetime.
This discography has plenty of samples.
posted by adamvasco at 7:34 AM PST - 45 comments

a delightful opportunity for a new sensation

After the 1885 completion of the first Canadian railroad to cross the Rockies, Prime Minister John A. MacDonald and his wife Agnes resolved to travel the length of the railroad the following summer. Unfortunately for the rail staff, Lady Agnes became bored while watching the prairies roll by. During a tour of the engine just after Banff, she noticed the cowcatcher and decided that such a perch would provide the best view of the Rockies on the whole train. Despite alarmed objections from the railroad staff, Lady Agnes successfully made herself a seat aboard the cowcatcher. Immortalized in the historically-focused Canadian folk band Tanglefoot's work, she famously rode that cowcatcher over the five hundred miles across the steep Rockies between Lake Louise and Vancouver.
posted by sciatrix at 7:29 AM PST - 25 comments

Keeping the damn things in place

Boosting face mask efficacy: a cheap 3D printable solution. Keeps potentially contaminated droplets INSIDE the mask ... and keeps your glasses from steaming up too. Great for people for whom N95 metal bands don't work as advertised. Best of all, no one appears to be trying to make bank out of this (yet). [more inside]
posted by Sheydem-tants at 5:55 AM PST - 25 comments

It has no interest in the Holmesian or Christie-an dazzle of truth

"[D]espite having the conventions and plot structures of a detective story, the pleasures that Clue offers aren't the pleasures of a successful detective story." In Clue or Red Herring? How Clue Shreds the Detective Rulebook, Milan Terlunen explores the 1985 film's delights of excess and redundancy, specifically in the reversibility of clues and red herrings. (Spoilers for all three endings.)
posted by mixedmetaphors at 5:54 AM PST - 15 comments

Dramatic Stonehenge Discovery

In ancient times / Hundreds of years before the dawn of history / Lived a strange race of people, the Druids / No one knows who they were or what they were doing / But Geoffrey of Monmouth was probably actually right in a way / And they got it secondhand and dragged it into Wiltshire [more inside]
posted by Hypatia at 5:42 AM PST - 11 comments

February 11

A Demoparty in a Browser

In 2016, the internet archive added a repository of console demos, which today has almost 600 entries. Demos involve bare metal hardware hackery to get the bestest graphics and music out of a machine. These ones are all made for extinct consoles, but can now run in your browser thanks to the magic of Mame. Jason Scott tells the tale.
posted by kaibutsu at 10:31 PM PST - 2 comments

the ballad of Captain Cowpie

"When I mentioned that male sage grouse often copulate with dried cowpies, I didn't do the situation justice. I will elaborate in a twitter thread. For most males, cowpie copulation is just an occasional indulgence. For others, it's a lifestyle." [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 5:30 PM PST - 20 comments

She was shamed for still having her Christmas lights up.

Neighbors are now putting theirs back up in solidarity. “No one really knows what is going on inside the house or why we didn’t take down the decorations,” said Pascucci, 31. “Our entire family was sick with covid starting December 24th. Within this timeframe, we lost 2 family members. One being my father,” she continued. “He loved decorating our house every year for the holidays ever since we were children and he took so much pride in doing so. He did it for us, especially for my 2 year old son who he loved so dearly.”
posted by folklore724 at 3:45 PM PST - 74 comments

Its Cheese Pull Can Span Multiple Feet

A Guide to America's Regional Pizza Styles
posted by box at 12:30 PM PST - 172 comments

Their aim was to create a new world... but this was a fantasy...

Documentarian Adam Curtis (many previouslies - here are just a couple) has a new series - Can't Get You Out of My Head with all six episodes available now on iPlayer. [more inside]
posted by deeker at 11:27 AM PST - 86 comments

All about the flea circus in five minutes or less

history of the flea circus, flea jumps through a hoop, fleas pull carriages [more inside]
posted by aniola at 11:06 AM PST - 12 comments

What does it condition us to see?

The Zoom Gaze: Video conferencing offers an illusory sense of unilateral control over conversations (Real Life): Film scholar Laura Mulvey theorized a “male gaze” that was structured and reproduced through cinematography, presuming a male hetero viewer and depicting women primarily as sexual objects rather than subjects. In this interview, Toni Morrison describes how she rejected centering the “white gaze” in her fiction: the presumption of a white audience and the white perspective as neutral. If Foucault used the idea of a “medical gaze” to describe how doctors objectify patients’ bodies to treat them, and the “panoptic” gaze to explore how carceral discipline is internalized, what might we say the Zoom gaze accomplishes? Whose perspective does it seek to naturalize? Whose subjectivity does it center, and in what sorts of forms? What does it condition us to see?
posted by not_the_water at 10:52 AM PST - 30 comments

Would I have been just as lost, only with more words in my head?

In Sequel Rights: A Review of Locus Reviews, Foz Meadows critiques a review written by Katharine Coldiron of The Ikessar Falcon by K.S. Villoso in the latest issue of Locus Magazine. Unfortunately, Coldiron had not read the first book of the series, The Wolf of Oren-Yaro. Meadows also examines the reviewer's body of work in general, and how reviewers use othering language about and hold authors of color to different standards (Coldiron is white; Villoso identifies as Filipino). Locus posted a short apology.
posted by j.r at 9:11 AM PST - 28 comments

Inside Baseball

A smuggling operation, a scientific analysis and a cracked code. All helped an astrophysicist conclude that a portion of major league baseballs used in 2020 were smaller and lighter than before—meaning they likely flew farther.
posted by infinite intimation at 8:26 AM PST - 36 comments

Tainted Love?

As we’ve seen, though, debates about PWAs being represented with dignity and agency date back to the start of the epidemic, as does the fight to preserve sex-positivity in the face of plague. For Davies not to represent those forces is a narrative choice, an interpretation of history that emphasises powerlessness, pain, isolation, shame and self-hatred over the countervailing forces of solidarity and communal struggle. Moving beyond the shame of the those years will only come after de-programming ourselves from a moralism of pleasure; it was then and is now possible to be a person with HIV and continue to have hot, safe sex.
Brian Mullin discusses his objections to Russell T. Davies' story about AIDS in the UK, It's a Sin.
posted by MartinWisse at 5:03 AM PST - 9 comments

Saving The Butterfly Forest

Photographer Brendan George Ko captures monarch butterflies at their southernmost migration stop in central Mexico, and the environmental destruction and violence that threaten the insects’ numbers, with text by Carolyn Kormann (The New Yorker)
posted by adrianhon at 4:16 AM PST - 6 comments

Some goodies for your screen saver

The Atlantic presents the winners of the 2021 Underwater Photographer of the Year Contest. More information on the UPY home page, including short video clips from the winners talking about their images.
posted by Harald74 at 3:17 AM PST - 4 comments

February 10

“expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize”

UC Berkeley Library acquires FBI records of surveillance of Black leaders
In 1967, the FBI quietly unleashed a covert surveillance operation targeting “subversive” civil rights groups and Black leaders, including the Black Panther Party, Martin Luther King Jr., Elijah Muhammad, Malcolm X, and many others. The objective, according to an FBI memo: to “expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize” the radical fight for Black rights — and Black power. Details of that sabotage plaster internal FBI records, with thousands of pages scattered across a medley of databases. Now, the UC Berkeley Library is working to put those pieces together.
posted by Lexica at 8:11 PM PST - 18 comments

Loud Enough to Wake the Dead

Introducing the Skelecaster: yes, this dude built a guitar out of his dead uncle’s skeleton. Bone-shredding video included.
posted by Ten Cold Hot Dogs at 2:41 PM PST - 38 comments

Untitled (Your Body Is a Battleground)

An oral history of Barbara Kruger's famous poster from The Gentlewoman -- its beginnings in 1989, its travel to Poland in the 1990s, its contemporary life as museum art (and as a T-shirt). Featuring comments by Cindy Sherman and Shepard Fairey, among others.
posted by Hypatia at 12:28 PM PST - 6 comments

Joss was the Vampire.

Charisma Carpenter accuses Joss Whedon of abuse. Charisma Carpenter alleges Joss Whedon “abused his power on numerous occasions” while she performed on Whedon’s series “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel.”
posted by leotrotsky at 11:53 AM PST - 262 comments

Are You Ready For Some (College) Football (Video Games)

In a Groundhog Day tweet, EA Sports announced that they were looking to revive the College Football franchise, almost a decade after the studio shuttered the title in response to a $60M name, image, and likeness (NIL) lawsuit settlement as part of the response to the O'Bannon lawsuit. [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 6:38 AM PST - 7 comments

“Is a whale a fish?” Illegal drugs in Japan in 2020

Japan likes to present itself as the only developed nation with effective drug prohibition, with lifetime cannabis use at 1.8%, compared to over 40% for the US and Canada. However, 2020 was an unusually tumultuous year for Japanese drug warriors. The most fascinating event has been a highly exceptional and irregular trial (still ongoing, link courtesy of archive.org as the site seems to be down) of one 青井硝子 (AOI Garasu, "Blue Glass", a pseudonym), that hinges on whether a "tea" (a simple water extraction of plant material that is not itself illegal, but contains a prohibited substance, DMT) can be considered an illegal "drug". Things took a turn for the strange when the defendant stood up in court and asked, "Is a whale a fish?". [more inside]
posted by The genius who rejected Anno's budget proposal. at 5:48 AM PST - 44 comments

Card Number 207 Had Something Else Going On

An Oral History of C-3PO’s Penis [Mel Magazine] [Arguably NSFW] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 5:24 AM PST - 21 comments

"You bubbly f*ck!"

The top 100 best TaskMaster tasks, ranked.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 3:39 AM PST - 72 comments

February 9

The Panmnemonicon - History and Memory in the Age of the Search Engine

History and memory are two different things, but their interpenetration makes it hard to talk about the one without talking about the other. We ordinarily suppose that, on a stroll of the mind backwards into the past, memory leaves off, and history begins, where the self itself leaves off: you can’t remember stuff from before you were born, obviously, and so once you hit that absolute boundary, you have no choice but to rely on third-person documentary sources, and that’s what we call history. 3500 words from Justin E. H. Smith at Substack on search engines and memory and history and nostalgia. Via 3quarksdaily.
posted by cgc373 at 11:46 PM PST - 1 comment

Empire Liquor Mart (9127 S. Figueroa St.) in a tiny apartment

I previously posted about this song, but have never FPPed this performance. Apartment Sessions packed in over 50 performers into a Brooklyn apartment for a full orchestral and choral performance of Gabriel Kahane's Empire Liquor Mart (9127 S. Figueroa St.) [10m54s]. [CW: describes real life events of the murder of a black teenager as a beautiful and thoughtful orchestral piece] Also of possible interest is this behind the scenes, making-of video [10m11s].
posted by hippybear at 9:01 PM PST - 8 comments

Siskel & Ebert give it two buns up

I present to you Moni Powers, the most prominent fartist of our time. Since the start of the year Moni has been reimagining our most beloved films as butts. Enjoy.
posted by phunniemee at 8:27 PM PST - 10 comments

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

SmarterEveryDay made a cannon that launches a baseball at 1000 mph. Then they did what any good engineer would do. They launched it at a dummy.
posted by kathrynm at 6:01 PM PST - 29 comments

Being a Go-Getter Is No Fun

New research suggests that competent employees are assigned more work—but they don't always like it.
posted by folklore724 at 5:37 PM PST - 66 comments

Danny Ray

In what became an iconic part of Brown’s concerts, Ray would walk onstage mid-“Please, Please, Please” and drape Brown with a cape, only for the singer to explode out of the cape with a second wind.
Danny Ray, 'cape man' and emmcee for James Brown, has died at 85. [more inside]
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 4:38 PM PST - 14 comments

Imamu room: Japanese home cooking

A peaceful, down to earth YouTube channel with many interesting bento boxes (called "husbento" by the comment section) and home meals. Contains cooking and eating noises, background music, humorous English subtitles, and occasional short conversations with the husband and daughter. [more inside]
posted by automatic cabinet at 4:38 PM PST - 8 comments

Turnip the Tortoise Loves Shower Time

Turnip the Tortoise shakes its little bum-bum in the shower. [SLYT] [SFW] That's it. That's the post.
posted by Capt. Renault at 3:31 PM PST - 20 comments

It's Just Better

It's Just Better. From the National Film Board of Canada website: This short documentary takes us to a farmhouse on Cape Breton Island where Shawn Peter Dwyer, age 10, lives with his mother and nine brothers and sisters. While the children’s pockets are usually empty, their lives are well filled. The film was made in 1982 by Beverly Shaffer. The film is fifteen minutes long, and ends with a scene of them all in a room hanging out together. It's something to behold.
posted by Alex404 at 1:32 PM PST - 14 comments

In Virtual Court No One Knows if You're a Cat

Things go wrong on zoom hearings all the time but they are usually not this hilarious. (SLYT) The judge followed up with a warning about the dangers of using filters in virtual hearings.
posted by SpaceWarp13 at 12:58 PM PST - 68 comments

Such arcane stuff as organisms that might not exist, Newton and colour

If you grew up in the late 70s or early 80s, there's a chance you had your mind at least slightly blown by one of James Burke's TV programmes. In these he charged across the history of science and technology making, well, Connections between things you might not have thought were linked. It's a while since we had anything new from him, but if you can get hold of BBC Radio 3 then you can listen to to him doing his James Burke thing for 15 minutes every evening this week. The voice is older, but it's still James Burke. [more inside]
posted by YoungStencil at 9:54 AM PST - 28 comments

“Other people are going to think it’s weird.”

ON Pleasure By Lauren R. O'Connor.
I learned three things from this interaction: one, it is bad to be really interested in things; two, if I was really interested in something, I should therefore hide it; and three, my mother cared more about me being normal than about me being happy.

This essay isn’t therapy, so I will not be unpacking that third lesson here, but I want to address the first two and how BTS freed me to find pleasure and actually let myself experience it for the sole reason that it feels good.
[more inside]
posted by Lexica at 9:48 AM PST - 100 comments

Spinning the 78's from the top of the world

Arctic Outpost Radio is playing great shellacs from 1902-1958.  Big Band, Jazz, Swing, Vintage Country, and Blues. As always, completely commercial free. Cal Lockwood spins from Longyearbyen (a Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic Ocean). Last year, Portuguese comedian Nuno Markl, made AOR internet famous.
posted by valkane at 8:40 AM PST - 10 comments

Dance of the Continents

Geoscientists at the Univ. of Sydney have published a model of continental plate movement of the last billion years, accompanied by a cool video demonstrating this dance.
posted by sudogeek at 8:40 AM PST - 20 comments

Dr. Jennifer Gunter Vs. Vagisil

Dr. Jennifer Gunter takes on Vagisil, a company marketing cleaning products for vulvas at teens. Gunter describes is as "predatory line of products aimed at teen girls. " [more inside]
posted by theora55 at 7:56 AM PST - 58 comments

Septuagenarian Laysan albatross Wisdom hatches new chick on Midway

Wisdom the Laysan albatross has done it again [more inside]
posted by zinon at 7:29 AM PST - 4 comments

The Legend of Beavis

The Legend of Beavis. The Legend of Zelda cartoon, but with vocals from Beavis & Butthead.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 5:59 AM PST - 19 comments

Impeachment Trial Begins

"The Senate impeachment trial of former President Trump begins with arguments and a vote on the constitutionality of the trial. Opening arguments from the House impeachment managers and the former president’s defense team are expected to follow." Impeachment managers will seek to prove that his actions directly incited the insurrection. Charges related to the events of 1/6/21 are being filed against participants in the siege.
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:44 AM PST - 1177 comments

February 8

Artist's Statement: You got your AI in my MS Paint!

paint.wtf 🎨 In which you, l'artiste, are prompted with a caption, for a scene which you are to sketch—only to have your genius validated or denied by an AI critic who's been programmed to rank your masterpiece among the world's best entries. New prompts generated frequently. I recently placed fifth among a field of forty illustrators with my stark rendition of A Shark That Refuses To Eat Fish (2021).
posted by not_on_display at 9:27 PM PST - 46 comments

Keep Direction By Good Methods

Before radar, before GPS, the US wanted to fly airmail across the United States, but night flights were dangerous and hard to navigate. Enter WUVHRKDBGM and a system of beacons that flashed those letters (which are also numbers) in Morse Code, with a mnemonic: "When Undertaking Very Hard Routes Keep Direction By Good Methods." The concrete arrows and -- sometimes -- the beacon towers that allowed 1920s pilots to fly through the night across the US persist today, mostly in the West. [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:33 PM PST - 25 comments

So many streamable radio stations in the world

A globe with radio stations, just click to hear what they're doing This has been posted on the blue a couple of times before, but the most recent one was in 2017, so I think it's worth mentioning again.
posted by Nancy Lebovitz at 12:47 PM PST - 42 comments

New York is the best city to cry in.

A Poem I cried in Washington Square Park the other night / thinking about healthcare / and how I quit my job to write poetry, / and how even a job in poetry / prevents you from writing it.
posted by folklore724 at 11:37 AM PST - 6 comments

“Good photography is not “what” you see, but “how” you see”.

1x.com is a complete time sink.
Its a curated photographic community, with a global membership.
There is a magazine with an archive, also a blog and Free Tutorials and Photo Critique and awards past and present. But mostly it is just Photos.
posted by adamvasco at 11:35 AM PST - 10 comments

A few steps are better than none

From The Guardian's Peter Walker: Many of the existing tips for introducing movement into your life presuppose a more normal life: ideas such as walking one extra bus stop on the way to work, or parking half a mile from your destination; getting a sit-stand desk at the office. Now, when your commute might be from the bedroom to the living room, and outings involve walking to the door to tip a Deliveroo rider, this all feels hypothetical....Small steps such as this are worth it: research has shown that if people nudge their body into even tiny amounts of effort, it can bring astonishing benefits. [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna at 11:25 AM PST - 47 comments

this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences

Three expeditions from three nations are scheduled to land on Mars this month. First, the United Arab Emirates Space Agency's Hope probe (مسبار الأمل‎) is due to enter Martian orbit tomorrow. Next, the China National Space Administration's Tianwen-1 (simplified Chinese: 天问; traditional Chinese: 天問) is scheduled to orbit the red plan on the next day after Hope. Then NASA's Perseverance mission should reach orbit on February 18th. [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 11:20 AM PST - 32 comments

The production quality on this was actually insanely good

Ever wondered what it's like to live as a Bokoblin? Using the latest in stealth technology, Life as a Bokoblin - A Zelda Nature Documentary presents the high risk journey of trained professional integrating and blending into a Great Plateau mid-sized Bokoblin community.
posted by rufb at 11:12 AM PST - 9 comments

The Limits of the Lunchbox Moment

“Belonging” doesn’t mean one thing. Jaya Saxena writes about realizing how she actually never had that "lunchbox moment", so often described in immigration/integration stories, where other kids made fun of her parents' food, and making space for other narratives about immigrant upbringings and belonging.
posted by toastyk at 9:49 AM PST - 30 comments

Feeling Blue?

You're in luck because there's a new Blue to be: YInMn, the first new blue in 2 centuries Turns out there's a lot to be said about Blue
posted by OHenryPacey at 9:39 AM PST - 44 comments

Tipping Is a Legacy of Slavery

Michelle Alexander on why the US should abolish the racist, sexist subminimum wage: "Before the pandemic, Black women who are tipped restaurant workers earned on average nearly $5 an hour less than their white male counterparts nationwide — largely because they are segregated into more casual restaurants in which they earn far less in tips than white men who more often work in fine dining, but also because of customer bias in tipping. With the pandemic, these inequities were exacerbated; nearly nine in 10 Black tipped workers reported that their tips decreased by half or more, compared to 78 percent of workers overall." (NYT/Archive.is) [more inside]
posted by adrianhon at 8:50 AM PST - 35 comments

Pepsi Blue II: Electric Bluegaloo

No, really. Well, maybe.
posted by chavenet at 8:41 AM PST - 16 comments

"Get in Losers, We're Going Crusading."

"I turned my art history students loose with a make-your-own-Bayeux Tapestry app." (In which the Twitter is also turned loose with said app. From @profannieoakley)
posted by Navelgazer at 7:34 AM PST - 12 comments

Monkey Business

China’s plan for medical domination
posted by Gyan at 4:47 AM PST - 14 comments

The Real Novelty of the ARPANET

In my view, the Network Working Group was able to get everything together in time and just generally excel at its task because it adopted an open and informal approach to standardization, as exemplified by the famous Request for Comments (RFC) series of documents. [...] That framing, and the availability of the documents themselves, made the protocol design process into a melting pot of contributions and riffs on other people’s contributions where the best ideas could emerge without anyone losing face. The RFC process was a smashing success and is still used to specify internet standards today, half a century later. 3800 words from Sinclair Target for Two-Bit History touching on ARPANET's protocols.
posted by cgc373 at 2:21 AM PST - 25 comments

February 7

Grattis på födelsedagen, Wilhelm!

Today is the birthday of Swedish Composer Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871 - 1927) He composed with his own unique voice in a romantic Nordic vein. He wrote several fine songs, six very lovely string quartets, two piano concertos, as well as two symphonies. His Masterpiece, in my opinion, is his Serenade for Orchestra.
posted by bertran at 9:41 PM PST - 5 comments

To be lucky, it’s often essential to be open and alert to the unexpected

How to be lucky (Psych): My research suggests that serendipity has three core characteristics. It starts with a serendipity trigger – the moment when you encounter something unusual or unexpected. Next, you need to connect the dots – that is, observe the trigger and link it to something seemingly unrelated, thus realising the potential value within the chance event (sometimes referred to as a Eureka moment). Finally, sagacity and tenacity are required to follow through and create an unexpected positive outcome. While a particular chance encounter is an event, serendipity is a multifaceted process.
posted by not_the_water at 6:12 PM PST - 29 comments

“It’s so deadly and so awful.”

Twelve out of 15 floors at the Royal London are occupied by Covid patients, with two extra floors added to accommodate the overflow. “They have to squish more patients in between others, because there’s not enough space,” says Scott. “And we walk around in these full blue PPE costumes, and all you can see is people’s eyes and their eyebrows.” The UK’s horrific Covid outbreak, through the eyes of a NZ nurse on the frontlines Cw: descriptions of what it’s like to work in a Covid ICU. Not gory, but not sugar coated either.
posted by supercrayon at 4:08 PM PST - 33 comments

We are STENO

Brian Williams provided the perfect opening for stenographers to showcase their talents in the leadup to National Court Reporter and Captioning Week February 8-15. Who are they? What do they do? [more inside]
posted by probably not that Karen Blair at 2:25 PM PST - 10 comments

Watermelon Burgers must be seen (and tasted) to be believed

I fully expect this recipe to be met with skepticism. In fact, a lot of you might express surprise at how good watermelon burgers turn out to be. I want you to eat this because I want to eat this, and once you try it, you’ll want to tell everyone you know to make it too. Then you’ll be the person no one believes, and later you’ll get to experience the satisfaction of hearing those people admit you were right all along. If that isn’t a fantastic reason to try out a new recipe, I don’t know what is.
posted by folklore724 at 11:21 AM PST - 68 comments

Aging dams threaten millions of people

"About 130 people are feared dead in northern India after a Himalayan glacier broke off and caused a high velocity surge of water down a river, sweeping away one dam in its path and damaging another," according to a report from The Guardian and many other outlets. Nobody knows yet why a chunk of the glacier broke off, but a recently published study estimates that "5 billion tons of desert dust disperses into Earth’s atmosphere every year. Some of it makes its way to the roof of the world — the Himalayas — where it warms glaciers and accelerates snowmelt." But this FPP is not about glaciers; it is about dams. [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna at 10:25 AM PST - 22 comments

Springsteen features in commercial set in the exact center of the U.S.

"There's a chapel in Kansas, standing on the exact center of the lower 48..." A brooding, spare commercial features Springsteen and U.S. Center Chapel, the center of the United States. "Jeep® kicks off Game Day by reminding us we are stronger than the obstacles in our way, and invites us to remember all the ways we are connected as Americans. A timeless CJ-5 takes us on a journey to the U.S. Center Chapel in Kansas in search of common ground. We have spanned deserts and climbed the highest peaks. We can cross this divide."
posted by intrepid_simpleton at 9:32 AM PST - 115 comments

Irk the purists Irk the purists Irk the purists tonight

Medieval musical notation systems as British biscuits - a Twitter thread by the excellent Musical Notation is Beautiful account.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 9:15 AM PST - 5 comments

The Frontex Files

The Frontex Files documents how Frontex, the rapidly-growing EU border and coast guard agency, has been working closely with the weapons industry to equip Frontex with firearms and controversial technologies such as biometrics (including facial recognition) and drones, all in an effort to "push back" migrants away from Europe. [more inside]
posted by jedicus at 8:15 AM PST - 14 comments

Blame Corporate Memphis

"It’s become the definitive style for big tech and small startups, relentlessly imitated and increasingly parodied. [Corporate Memphis] involves the use of simple, well-bounded scenes of flat cartoon figures in action, often with a slight distortion in proportions (the most common of which being long, bendy arms) to signal that a company is fun and creative." Josh Gabert-Doyon on why every tech advert looks the same (Wired).
posted by adrianhon at 4:21 AM PST - 56 comments

Rome was not built in a day

In 1933 Benito Mussolini commissioned archaeologist Italo Gismondi to create a scale model of ancient Rome as a piece of propaganda.
It took him over 35 years to complete the Plastico di Roma Imperiale.
Here is a street view.
posted by adamvasco at 4:09 AM PST - 17 comments

February 6

Democracy in Action

Waylande Gregory's ceramic mural in a courtyard of D.C.'s Daly building, Democracy in Action depicts municipal workers directing traffic, putting out fires, and beating African Americans. At its unveiling, the police department protested and the mayor asked for the murals removal and destruction. Eleanor Roosevelt and Paul Manship, representing the US Fine Arts Commission, intervened and save it. The panel remained but the entrance door to the courtyard to view the frieze was locked in 1941. The mural was funded by the lesser known New Deal program Federal Project Number One, which funded thousands of art, music, literature and theater projects, employing up to 40000 artists.
posted by adept256 at 8:34 PM PST - 22 comments

NIN-ish Fashion

Trent, Mariqueen, and Atticus unite with Mike Garson, Carlos Alomar, Gerry Leonard, Mark Plati, and Sterling Campbell (Bowie band alumni) to create a new version of David Bowie's Fashion.
posted by hippybear at 4:03 PM PST - 30 comments

Economics For People (w/ Ha-Joon CHANG)

Cambridge Economist Ha-Joon CHANG (author of 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism) is on a mission to demystify his discipline to the average person. Because Economics is for Everyone (RSA Animate) [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 1:16 PM PST - 19 comments

The blank space at an intersection of hope and despair

The Weather Station, aka Tamara Lindeman, released their new album Ignorance yesterday. A mix of moody strings, dense rhythms, careful orchestration, and shimmering vocals, it is getting great reviews. The underlying theme is one of vulnerability and loss in both personal relationships and in our relationship with the planet, but with room left for hope in the unknown. [more inside]
posted by blue shadows at 12:11 PM PST - 13 comments

What I Learned in Avalanche School

I wanted to be prepared for the worst nature could throw at me. But the real threat turned out to be human. "Ninety percent of human-avalanche encounters, Ryan said, are triggered by humans, making humans the primary avalanche problem. Nature doesn’t kill people with avalanches. People kill people with avalanches. ... The problem — the primary human problem — is that people are susceptible, prideful, bullheaded, egotistic, dumbstruck and lazy. Add to this doomed slurry a little avalanche training (or what used to qualify as avalanche training, and its focus on analyzing snowpack), and people make terrible decisions with greater frequency and confidence."
posted by folklore724 at 10:51 AM PST - 41 comments

Everybody's Talkin' bout Bugsnax

As Cyberpunk 2077's house of cards glitched into pieces immediately upon release, video game enthusiasts were nevertheless treated to one colorful, diverse, queer as hell videogame about body modification and the ethics of consumerism: and it's Bugsnax. [more inside]
posted by one for the books at 10:11 AM PST - 13 comments

A vast middle-wing conspiracy

What a lot of people did (mostly left, but also some on the right) to make the election run smoothly and honestly. "There was a conspiracy unfolding behind the scenes, one that both curtailed the protests and coordinated the resistance from CEOs. Both surprises were the result of an informal alliance between left-wing activists and business titans. The pact was formalized in a terse, little-noticed joint statement of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and AFL-CIO published on Election Day. Both sides would come to see it as a sort of implicit bargain–inspired by the summer’s massive, sometimes destructive racial-justice protests–in which the forces of labor came together with the forces of capital to keep the peace and oppose Trump’s assault on democracy." [more inside]
posted by Nancy Lebovitz at 5:14 AM PST - 51 comments

Saving History: The Rapid Response Collecting of the Capitol Siege

"Knowing that many objects from the day’s rally and attack on the U.S. Capitol would quickly be discarded, I volunteered to go down to the National Mall and see what I could find....My collecting approach was simple: save materials clearly related to the rally and the attack that followed. The materials, devoid of their creators and users, constituted little more than trash unless saved and contextualized." The Cold Morning of the Day After reflects on sifting through the detritus of the siege. [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:02 AM PST - 14 comments

The Cost of a Big Lie

Florida-based Smartmatic filed a defamation suit Thursday against Fox News, some of its better-known news employees and two attorneys close to Trump, Sidney Powell and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. The lawsuit, which seeks $2.7 billion in damages, accuses them of executing a coordinated disinformation campaign aimed at convincing the public of rampant election fraud. Smartmatic’s suit follows a pair of similar complaints filed last month by Dominion against Giuliani and Powell, accusing both of spreading bogus claims for self-promotion and a shot at salvaging a second term for Trump. Fox News Faces $2.7 Billion Lawsuit Over Voting Machine Fraud Claims [Bloomberg] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 4:19 AM PST - 49 comments

Planet America

In the years since 2016, other countries have looked upon US politics with...well...you saw the Der Spiegel cover, the endless "America First [nation] Second" parodies (previously), puppets and other puppets, and China thinks Mike Pompeo is a doomsday clown. But Planet America, a weekly hour-long comedy/deep dive/news summary of US politics news by the ABC (the Australian one), is one of the more comprehensive, thoughtful, and funny non-US efforts at parsing the Beltway. Their Youtube archive goes back to at least mid-2019. You may find it interesting. [more inside]
posted by saysthis at 3:26 AM PST - 5 comments

Carbon‐Neutral Pathways

New study: A zero-emissions US is now pretty cheap (pdf) - "In 2050, benefits to the US offset costs, but there are some unexpected outcomes." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 12:06 AM PST - 16 comments

February 5

🎵 Too Many Nooks! 🎶

Jenn Welch recreated Too Many Cooks within Animal Crossing to make Too Many Nooks! (warning: earworm)
posted by Pronoiac at 4:39 PM PST - 13 comments

Masking is grounded in trauma and is a trauma response

A groundbreaking analysis of the social context of autistic masking has been published by Dr. Amy Pearson (University of Sunderland) and Kieran Rose (autistic self-advocate) titled A Conceptual Analysis of Autistic Masking: Understanding the Narrative of Stigma and the Illusion of Choice (open access until February 10, 2021; the virtually identical preprint remains available after that date). Rose's associated essay explains the context and development of the collaboration. [more inside]
posted by heatherlogan at 3:28 PM PST - 30 comments

"Technically, spaghetti and meatballs is bad grammar."

"SERVE SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS TO an Italian, and they may question why pasta and meat are being served together. Order a samosa as an appetizer, and an Indian friend might point out, as writer Sejal Sukhadwala has, that this is similar to a British restaurant offering sandwiches as a first course...Each of these meals or dishes feels somehow odd or out of place, at least to one party, as though an unspoken rule has been broken. Except these rules have indeed been discussed, written about extensively, and given a name..." Introducing "Food Grammar", The Unspoken Rules of Every Cuisine
posted by hungrytiger at 3:20 PM PST - 141 comments

the PIP is a pip

Subaru Blames A Single Factory Worker For A Recall (Jalopnik, Feb. 3, 2021) [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol at 2:50 PM PST - 40 comments

Mint condition theater: rediscovered lost plays, streaming now

New York's Mint Theater Company has been seeking out and resurrecting forgotten plays for almost 30 years. With theaters closed, they're streaming beautiful archived recordings of previous productions. Now playing: Days To Come (2018 performance), by Lillian Hellman, and Teresa Deevy's Katie Roche (2013). Viewing is free; donations are welcome. [more inside]
posted by kristi at 1:52 PM PST - 4 comments

Choosing my Persimmon

From the 2021 SF Sketchfest Virtual Fundraiser, please enjoy Triumph the Insult Comic Dog interviewing "Weird Al" Yankovic.
posted by Quonab at 1:39 PM PST - 9 comments

New reptile dropped

A nano-chameleon with exceptionally large genitals is the world's smallest known reptile. And it's hecking adorable. More coverage from the Guardian
posted by Balthamos at 1:18 PM PST - 13 comments

...Their Apps Tracked Them.

Unlike the data we reviewed in 2019, this new data included a remarkable piece of information: a unique ID for each user that is tied to a smartphone. This made it even easier to find people, since the supposedly anonymous ID could be matched with other databases containing the same ID, allowing us to add real names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and other information about smartphone owners in seconds.

They Stormed the Capitol. Their Apps Tracked Them.
posted by y2karl at 1:06 PM PST - 42 comments

Is your dog a genius?

Source link: The Conversation. Anyone who has lived with a dog will know their capacity for learning the meaning of words, even ones you don’t want them to know. How many times have you had to spell the words “walk” or “dinner” in the hope of avoiding an explosion of excitement? Previous studies have investigated how non-human animals, including chimpanzees, sea lions and rhesus monkeys, learn words. But now a paper published in Nature shows some dogs learn the name of a new object after hearing it only four times, an ability previously thought to be confined to humans.
posted by Bella Donna at 12:01 PM PST - 16 comments

A Man With a Gift

Samer Recognized A Fart Online
posted by gwint at 11:55 AM PST - 22 comments

Farewell, Christopher Plummer

One of the most prolific and respected actors in the world, with a filmography spanning over 60 years: Christopher Plummer, has passed away at the age of 91.
posted by darkstar at 11:53 AM PST - 74 comments

Interesting insight into the business of discount brokerages.

How Discount Brokerages Make Money. ".....This is an exaggeration, but not much of one. 57% of Schwab’s revenues are from net interest. The firm could literally give away every other service; discount the mutual fund fees to zero, do away with commissions, etc etc, and they would still be profitable." [more inside]
posted by storybored at 11:04 AM PST - 25 comments

“You Know What I Heard About Kordell Stewart???”

Well, what always happens in the horror movies when it’s all going too good, and everybody’s chillin’ in the house? THE TELEPHONE RINGS. (Some people reading this are already screaming, “Kordell, runnnnn!!!! Get out of the house, bro!!!!”)
In his own words, former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kordell Stewart addresses a rumor that plagued his career.
posted by The Gooch at 11:01 AM PST - 15 comments

Super Mario World remastered

Owing to last year's Nintendo Gigaleak, an intrepid researcher tracked down the uncompressed PCM samples used in Super Mario World, and others have used them to play tracks from the soundtrack in their "original" fidelity for the first time.
posted by uncleozzy at 9:47 AM PST - 10 comments


Markov chain sea shanties. Generated hourly. Data source.
posted by brownpau at 8:42 AM PST - 5 comments

The Primal Scream

The pandemic exposed “balance” for the lie that it is. Now, a generation is teetering on the edge. A NYT package on motherhood, parenting during the pandemic, and everything it exposed. [more inside]
posted by toastyk at 8:33 AM PST - 12 comments

Some Beautiful Harmony For the Deeps of Winter

"Good Woman" , the new album from Hertfordshire's The Staves has been released today, and early reviews are looking good. The sisters talked with the Independent and NME about the album, and YouTube has a wealth of older clips, including videos that are in some sense "official", as well as many live performances, and one beautiful rehearsal in a hallway.
posted by Ipsifendus at 7:52 AM PST - 5 comments

Crowdsourcing a cure for feline coronavirus

Data from a sprawling, extra-medical experiment to treat cats infected with the usually incurable and fatal mutation of a coronavirus, feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), gathered through online groups with unapproved drugs has been collected with the goal "to get the citizen science out to veterinarians in the more trusted venue of a peer-reviewed journal." [more inside]
posted by gladly at 7:47 AM PST - 9 comments

Mostly Harmful

Charlie Hall on the Elite Dangerous players who say they’re being scammed, trapped in space, and forced to work 800 light-years from home (Polygon)
posted by adrianhon at 7:23 AM PST - 27 comments

Frege plagiarized the Stoics

Susanne Bobzien, philosophy professor at Oxford, has published a 30,000-word article that gives 120 examples of where the famous logician Gottlob Frege plagiarized the Stoics. [more inside]
posted by abecedarium radiolarium at 6:51 AM PST - 22 comments

We asked an art historian to review 8 fighter cockpits

Grumman F-14 Tomcat: This space is redolent of Pop Art, it riffs on the imagery of the past but there is an unmistakable element of Studio 54 about it. The joystick and serried ranks of switches remind one of a Lichtenstein image (see below). The pilot here is part of the narrative, two screens reflect back at them. The optimism of the sixties has gone, this is about brittle individualist control, it could be a DJ’s lair or the pilot might be Bowie—in any case this is the cockpit as Warhol print.
posted by ejs at 6:25 AM PST - 14 comments

Read the standing orders. READ THEM AND UNDERSTAND THEM.

The best bits of the extraordinary meeting of the Handforth Parish Council Planning and Environment Committee held on Thursday 10th December 2020 at 7:00​pm (via Twitter). Eighteen minutes that explain all you need to know about British politics. Committee member Jackie Weaver is having her moment in the sun.
posted by rory at 2:47 AM PST - 31 comments

I listen to this all the time when working out!

Sesame Street: 80s Music Mashup Parody [more inside]
posted by freethefeet at 1:51 AM PST - 9 comments

February 4

What, me riot?

Today is the 240th anniversary of the acquittal of Lord George Gordon for treason. As Chair of the Protestant Association he had presented a petition to parliament on 2nd June 1780 against The Papists Act of 1778, which was the legal start of Catholic emancipation in Britain. Riots subsequently broke out, the government was underprepared, and the suppression was fatal to hundreds. The defense was Lord George is a good chap, can't be held responsible for what the rabble does. 50 minutes of BBC discussion on Riots. [prev MeFited by XMLicious] The Gordon Riots were central to Dickens' Barnaby Rudge.
posted by BobTheScientist at 11:29 PM PST - 5 comments

"I dance, as if I have a gun to my head"

"African Cypher" A documentary about street dance in South Africa. From Isipantsula, B-boying, Krump or Sbhujwa, this is a raw, inspiring, and simply beautiful film with a fantastic soundtrack. [more inside]
posted by Zumbador at 10:40 PM PST - 2 comments

Armie Hammer’s Hollywood Career Is in Freefall as Sex Scandal Explodes

After he dropped out of two high-profile projects – which Variety hears from multiple well-placed sources he was asked to leave – it’s not clear if his career can, or will, recover. “He’s not Tom Cruise,” a high-powered publicist says. “He keeps getting cast, but it’s never a hit at the box office. Who is going to fight in this day and age for a star who has this complicated of a story surrounding him?”
posted by folklore724 at 6:15 PM PST - 140 comments

Beautiful, graceful, gender-norm-challenging dance

TranScend Dance Studio don't have much web presence beyond their Youtube channel, but wow do they have some beautiful videos there. [more inside]
posted by Lexica at 5:39 PM PST - 4 comments

Acapella group does common jingles

Acapella Jingles "A Korean acapella group called Maytree that does impressions of famous cultural jingles and sound effects" [more inside]
posted by kathrynm at 5:32 PM PST - 4 comments

“Don’t ever hesitate to push me into wider and deeper thinking.”

"Madeleine L’Engle’s mail arrived in prodigious batches by the summer of 1976, 14 years after the publication of A Wrinkle in Time. From her study in Manhattan’s Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, where she served as librarian, the 57-year-old author attended to editorial correspondence, fan art, manila envelopes stuffed with middle-school-reader responses, royalty statements, and speaking requests from around the world. >Amid the usual haul, one correspondent stood out: Ron Irwin, inmate #130539 at the State Prison of Southern Michigan, a 25-year-old former member of the Black Panther Party." Abigail Santamaria for Vanity Fair on the writing relationship between the prolific author of A Wrinkle in Time and a Black Panther imprisoned for a murder he didn’t commit.
posted by ChuraChura at 4:55 PM PST - 6 comments


Street Writer is an homage to Street Fighter II, except with some NYC writer friends battling it out in some famous book locales. (maxnc.itch.io) "In Street Writer you can play with one of eight “fighters” who are, in fact, writers: Saeed Jones, Alexandra Kleeman, Chelsea Hodson, Amy Rose Spiegel, Jia Tolentino, Tony Tulathimmute, and Arabelle Sicardi. Once you’ve chosen your writerly avatar you can set your literary battle against such sacred bookish backdrops as the East Village’s KGB Bar, used bookstore Housing Works, and an imaginary “bookstore row” in which Greenlight sits across the street from WORD. Sure, it’s really weird to watch Tony Tulathimutte land a roundhouse kick on Alexandra Kleeman while she holds a book in one hand and punches him in the nuts with the other but… it’s also super-fun." (Lit Hub)
posted by not_the_water at 4:38 PM PST - 0 comments - Post a Comment

Michael Goldhaber is the internet prophet you’ve never heard of

"Michael Goldhaber is the internet prophet you’ve never heard of. Here’s a short list of things he saw coming: the complete dominance of the internet, increased shamelessness in politics, terrorists co-opting social media, the rise of reality television, personal websites, oversharing, personal essay, fandoms and online influencer culture — along with the near destruction of our ability to focus. Most of this came to him in the mid-1980s..."
posted by COD at 4:06 PM PST - 7 comments

that one guillermo del toro movie

Ian Danskin's latest video essay describes the power structures in Guillermo Del Toro's four films, The Devil's Backbone, Pan's Labyrinth, Crimson Peak, and The Shape of the Water. ( 14 minute Youtube) (spoilers for all four films)
posted by rebent at 3:12 PM PST - 3 comments

Rough-faced shag

My favourite species of birds are the ones named by people who clearly hate birds. [sltwitter]
posted by Pyrogenesis at 2:44 PM PST - 21 comments

1954 Time Capsule Perched on Bookshop

Cleveland's Zubal Books has a pretty snazzy penthouse. [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol at 1:15 PM PST - 12 comments

Just Sixty Minutes of House Music

New Hampshire-based Eris Drew and Octo Octa (Maya Bouldry-Nelson) are lovers, co-founders of T4T Luv NRG Records, and two of the most prominent DJs boosting the house and rave scene.
(Slight derail: In essay, interview, and recording, Drew has described how the spiritual ecstasy provided by dance music has impacted her.)
This past year, Octa & Drew have been resident DJs at the BBC.
On February 1, they wrapped things up with 60 minutes of old-school house bangerzzz.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:32 AM PST - 15 comments

A beard? How long did that take to film?

Noted internet maths person Matt Parker explains the Minecraft speed running controversy: How lucky is too lucky?
posted by Pendragon at 10:46 AM PST - 36 comments

125 Years of Cat Videos

A colorized, 1440p60 compilation of several of the Lumière Brothers films, starting with La petite fille et son chat ("The Little Girl and Her Cat", 1899). Don't mind the stock sound effects. [more inside]
posted by one for the books at 10:31 AM PST - 14 comments

".... It is a really nice day."

3:45pm, a beautiful short film about having an existential crisis by Alisha Liu (via Kottke)
posted by Stark at 8:37 AM PST - 10 comments

Touching Fish

Jane Li on why Chinese youngsters, subjected to “996 hours” (9am to 9pm for six days a week), are embracing a philosophy of slacking off or “touching fish”, a Chinese phrase synonymous with lazing around at work (Quartz) [more inside]
posted by adrianhon at 6:43 AM PST - 32 comments

There was a vast demand for Patinkin-related content

Scenes From a Marriage, Patinkin-Style | Mandy Patinkin and Kathryn Grody’s charming, irreverent pandemic-era posts led to unlikely social media stardom. Will the vaccine end their run? Sarah Lyall writes for the NY Times about the past Patinkin year. “There’s no question,” Patinkin said. “Being with my family holed up for 11 months has been one of the true gifts of my life.” (psst - the photos/clips are the best part) [more inside]
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 3:41 AM PST - 14 comments

Transgression, An Elegy

But it’s a new era: the transgressed-upon of the world are speaking, and the world is listening. This changes many things, profoundly. It’s been a long time coming. As to whether injury will prove a wellspring of cultural vitality or a wellspring of platitudes and kitsch, that is what’s being negotiated at the moment. Long 6300-word essay by Laura Kipnis for a journal called Liberties, edited by Leon Wieseltier. [more inside]
posted by cgc373 at 1:46 AM PST - 25 comments

February 3

I think she sings standing still because her voice is doing so much

I saw Celeste perform on Graham Norton this past weekend [9m14s, includes interview], BUT WOW! I guess she'd been there previously, and is known within the UK. I had never noticed her before, and I bought her debut album which just came out. You might also enjoy it: Ideal Woman, Strange [BRIT Awards performance, video, , Tonight Tonight, Stop This Flame[video], Tell Me Something I Don't Know, Not Your Muse, Beloved, Love Is Back [video], A Kiss, The Promise, A Little Love [cw: holiday advertising], Some Goodbyes Come With Hellos
posted by hippybear at 9:56 PM PST - 8 comments

Life in a Supertall Tower: Leaks, Creaks, Breaks

432 Park, one of the wealthiest addresses in the world, faces some significant design problems Residents of the exclusive tower are now at odds with the developers, and each other, making clear that even multimillion-dollar price tags do not guarantee problem-free living. The claims include millions of dollars of water damage from plumbing and mechanical issues; frequent elevator malfunctions; and walls that creak like the galley of a ship — all of which may be connected to the building’s main selling point: its immense height.
posted by folklore724 at 5:31 PM PST - 102 comments

Episodes consist of a hypokinetic gait with compulsive pacing

Dog trancing (Instagram link) is a little-understood behavior (PDF link). [more inside]
posted by agentofselection at 2:58 PM PST - 21 comments

Raizing's vertical STG Battle Garegga hit Japanese arcades 25 years ago

...and if you have any fondness for shoot'em ups (or any videogames at all, really) watch this exhibition by T³-Kamui, the world's best Battle Garegga player, attempting to beat her world record, with superb English commentary courtesy of Softdrink_117 and Frenetic. (via GSK)
posted by Bangaioh at 2:43 PM PST - 9 comments

Shoot him again, his soul's still dancing

With Sion Sono's US debut "Prisoners of the Ghostland" premiering in Sundance, it's time to provide a definitive ranking of Nicolas Cage's craziest performances.
posted by sapagan at 2:36 PM PST - 11 comments

The Aziraphale and Crowley of Lake Merritt

During the pandemic, Oaklanders discovered an unusual pair of ducks hanging out at Lake Merritt, and they became locally famous through local social media. But specialists in animal rescue realized that there was a problem, and took steps to save these domesticated fowl from a dangerous environment. This is entirely charming, and there are lovely photos and links to video clips in the article.
posted by suelac at 12:15 PM PST - 10 comments

"it was obvious that Jimin was unabashedly different"

How Park Jimin of BTS Helped Me Feel Seen in My Brown, Queer Body. One nonbinary Bangladeshi American writer explains why it was so revolutionary to witness the K-pop superstar embrace both the feminine and the masculine on stage.
Jimin’s “Filter” performance, which I interpreted as a representation of gender fluidity and experimentation, assured me it was okay not to know which box I fit into, to constantly question, and to try new things. I felt affirmed in lacking the perfect word to pinpoint my gender identity. My struggles with my body, impacted by my strict upbringing, had made me feel isolated in sharing my ideal presentation with others. But Jimin had proudly displayed his moves on a global stage that was live streamed by more than 10 million people. In his rejection of gender norms, in wearing whatever he wanted, he’d reminded me that my body was more than the object of ridicule.
[more inside]
posted by Lexica at 11:22 AM PST - 10 comments

Waking the Leviathan

The story of how James S.A. Corey’s The Expanse went from game concept to blockbuster TV series: From failed MMO pitch to play-by-email roleplaying game to novels to television.
posted by kaibutsu at 9:24 AM PST - 86 comments

I tried to be nice

Noted internet person D'Angelo Wallace's latest video: INFLUENCER-19
posted by Pendragon at 9:21 AM PST - 13 comments

Beverley Bryan

Beverley Bryan: the British Black Panther who inspired a generation of women In the mid-60s, Beverley Bryan was a prefect at Lavender Hill secondary modern in south London. One of her responsibilities was to stand at the school gates and scribble down the name of any student who was late. One such girl was Olive Morris, who would become one of the country’s leading anti-racism activists. Bryan, meanwhile, would follow in the younger girl’s footsteps, becoming a British Black Panther, a founder member of the Brixton Black Women’s Group and, in 1985, the co-author of the seminal book The Heart of the Race: Black Women’s Lives in Britain – which helped educate generations of women about the struggles and triumphs of Black women in Britain. [SL Guardian] [more inside]
posted by halcyonday at 7:26 AM PST - 5 comments

Paul and Audrey

A short comic on how Paul Desmond, the original saxophonist of the Dave Brubeck Quartet, wrote a piece for Audrey Hepburn. He never knew she’d heard it (Paul Rogers at The New Yorker). [more inside]
posted by adrianhon at 6:41 AM PST - 16 comments

something good will happen in the future that I want to be here for

"If we’re lucky, the cherry trees on the Tidal Basin bloom in April and maybe winter is over then. Maybe it’s not, because there are many kinds of winter: There is the darkness, and then there is the holidays, and then there is the brutal cold, and then there is the wet, lingering winter. We are still so far from spring." Defector's Kelsey McKinney on winter, resilience, and When The Cherries Run Out
posted by everybody had matching towels at 5:14 AM PST - 17 comments

Lego Braille

Lego Braille Bricks come to Australia, helping kids with vision impairment to learn by touch - ABC News [more inside]
posted by freethefeet at 2:10 AM PST - 6 comments

February 2

The free market and rent-seeking

When you hear the phrase "free market," you probably think of "a market that is free from regulation" but that's the opposite of the phrase's original meaning! Cory Doctorow on the 'free' market, rent seeking, London, speculation and poor doors.
posted by signal at 6:20 PM PST - 37 comments

My story is one of many stories

The reason why I think it's important to share is because so many of the people who helped perpetrate and who take responsibility for what happened in the Capitol are trying to tell us all to move on. AOC on what happened in the Capitol. [Insta video]
posted by roolya_boolya at 4:57 PM PST - 130 comments

A New Skipper At The Helm Of Amazon

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has announced his plans to step down as CEO in the latter half of 2021, with AWS head Andy Jassy to take over the position. (SLCNBC) [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 4:00 PM PST - 40 comments

RIP Hal Holbrook

The actor who personified the paranoia of the Seventies on film while having a wide-ranging career on stage, is dead at 95. Holbrook is perhaps most famous for his role as Deep Throat, but those familiar with his career will remember him for his longest, that of Mark Twain, whom he played longer (58 years) than Samuel Clemens (47). Holbrook "eventually developed the role into a two-act, one-man show called “Mark Twain Tonight!,” taking it to schools, nightclubs and theaters. He took it to Broadway three times — 1966, 1977 and 2005 — and won a Tony Award as best dramatic actor for the 1966 version."
posted by Fukiyama at 3:53 PM PST - 42 comments

I Got You Babe

The RC-6025 pulls a helluva performance. No doubt you can still picture its black flaps with their no-nonsense white Helvetica numbers as they fall, womp, and change 5:59 AM to 6:00 – again, and again, and again ... This clock is not just a piece of set decoration. It's a character unto itself. It has dramatic close-ups, stunt doubles, voice actors, and even a catchphrase: "Okay, campers, rise and shine..." from An ode to the flip-action Panasonic RC-6025 [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 2:06 PM PST - 27 comments

Derivative Works are the Sincerest Form of Flattery

In January of 2018 cartoonist Adam Ellis was at a crossroads. He felt stifled making comics for Buzzfeed, which were often the target of scorn. So he left. After leaving, he drew a short and deeply personal comic that put to page his feelings about reclaiming his creative abilities and regrowing as an artist.

Two years later, two filmmakers made a short film version of his comic without authorization. Adam was not pleased. [more inside]
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 1:33 PM PST - 23 comments

Fireworks? On Decemberween? At 12:40 PM? Entirely in your kitchen?!

Steamed Hams but it's a Sbemail [more inside]
posted by J.K. Seazer at 12:42 PM PST - 7 comments

science for the people

In the 1930s, as Jewish and dissident scientists were forced from their posts in Nazi Germany, many found refuge in the United States. At the time, American scientists were trying to shield themselves from the winds of politics by honing arguments for the value of ‘pure’ science. On the frontlines of the Nazi assault in Europe, however, a handful of scientists believed that the way to ensure the integrity of science was to enrich and deepen its connection to the public, not to sever it. From where they stood, it sure didn’t look like science was intrinsically democratic when left to its own devices. In response, Schrödinger and his contemporaries converged on a novel and radical principle: the importance of allowing the public to help steer the course of scientific research.
posted by ChuraChura at 7:59 AM PST - 38 comments

Travel Photographer of the Year 2020

In pictures, from the Guardian. Is the Pallas' Cat one the best? Probably, but the other photos of people, places, and phenomenon are also good.
posted by Hypatia at 6:49 AM PST - 23 comments

Who is proposing intelligent solutions? Who is blocking them? And why?

What the next generation of editors need to tell their political reporters — "It’s impossible to look out on the current state of political discourse in this country and think that we are succeeding in our core mission of creating an informed electorate." Dan Froomkin imagines what needs to change in political coverage.
posted by gladly at 6:38 AM PST - 24 comments

“I really like parties, because parties are supposed to be fun”

Pretend It’s a City (Netflix) is a seven-part documentary directed by Martin Scorsese featuring New York author and humorist Fran Lebowitz. Naomi Fry: “The show’s only through line is Lebowitz herself, whose slapdash history of New York City is mostly just an occasion to riff. Scorsese’s role is largely limited to explosions of laughter, often heard off camera, and fretful interjections,” (The New Yorker); Carrie Wittmer on the twelve best bits in the show (Vulture).
posted by adrianhon at 6:06 AM PST - 51 comments

Black History Matters

The National Abolition Hall of Fame and Museum in Peterboro, New York is offering a series of virtual daily “crash courses” on Black History. To comemmorate Black History Month a new video will be posted daily. They will be available on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter and Instagram. The stated goal of the series: “To provide critical context for the ongoing racial justice movements and the persistence of racism in America.” All access is free. Introduction. The Beginning: 1619-1712. [more inside]
posted by kinnakeet at 5:38 AM PST - 3 comments

77 Days: Trump’s Campaign to Subvert the Election

...Thursday the 12th was the day Mr. Trump’s flimsy, long-shot legal effort to reverse his loss turned into something else entirely — an extralegal campaign to subvert the election, rooted in a lie so convincing to some of his most devoted followers that it made the deadly Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol almost inevitable.

...In coming days, a presidential transition like no other will be dissected when he stands trial in the Senate on an impeachment charge of “incitement of insurrection.” Yet his lie of an election stolen by corrupt and evil forces lives on in a divided America.
77 Days: Trump’s Campaign to Subvert the Election [NYT]
posted by y2karl at 5:18 AM PST - 153 comments

Unsurprisingly, Great Babylon had lots of dirty laundry

Professionals of the male-only occupation of washerman/fuller (Akkadian ašlāku, Sumerogram maybe 𒈐𒌓?) in the Neo-Babylonian Empire—some of whom were slaves and some free—signed formal contracts to do their clients' laundry for a period of time. (←if this link takes you to a French-language web site, you need to click the TÉLÉCHARGER, ‘download’ button to view the English-language PDF) [more inside]
posted by XMLicious at 2:39 AM PST - 8 comments

February 1

The first democratic elections happened in 1996.

Taiwan is a civilization (thread) - "Americans should be more aware of Taiwan... in addition to great public health and health care, Taiwan has great urbanism."[1,2,3,4,5] [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 11:42 PM PST - 29 comments

Tony Bennett, 94, Has Alzheimer's Disease

For four years, the legendary singer and his family have kept his secret. Now, they're breaking their silence. (AARP.org) [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol at 8:42 PM PST - 34 comments

shit poop feces doo-doo turds crap poo dung dirt BOO!

Do not shit on the lettuce in your garden. That's night soil. It smells bad. it may cause disease. On the other hand, humanure is as safe as any other properly-processed kind of manure. I would specifically like to direct you to chapter six of the Humanure Handbook: Fecophobia and the Pathogen Issue. It's time for shit to get real. Got some time on your hands? Ready to work on completing the soil cycle? Talk to your local friendly municipal government about implementing standardized international code for regulating home-built compost toilets. DIY if circumstances permit, it's good clean fun! [more inside]
posted by aniola at 7:52 PM PST - 55 comments

Dog found after being lost in the bush

A happy ending: man found 18 days after attempting short cut through the bush, dog found two weeks later on the same property.
posted by freethefeet at 6:24 PM PST - 13 comments

There is no possibility of meeting Nanduttarā here, because she’s absent

“The First Free Women” as literary fraud
The publisher’s blurb on the back cover begins, “Composed around the Buddha’s lifetime, the Therigatha (Poems of the Elder Buddhist Nuns) contains poems by the first Buddhist women. Here you’ll find princesses and courtesans, tired wives of arranged marriages and the desperately in love, those born with limitless wealth and those born with nothing at all. Their voices are all here.” There’s just one problem. Despite the book’s marketing, the Theris cannot be met in these pages. There are no “female voices” for us to hear. That’s because this book is not a translation of the Therigatha. It’s not even a “free translation” of the Therigatha. It’s a collection of original poems written by a contemporary American man.
[more inside]
posted by Lexica at 4:39 PM PST - 20 comments

"Now we're talking about memorization, and the trick looks like this"

Penn & Teller's famous "Nail Gun" trick, as performed on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, and then years later on Penn & Teller: Fool Us, synced up for your amazement. [single link YouTube]
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 4:13 PM PST - 42 comments

Chicago Public Schools Reopening: Making it Harder for All Isn't Equity

Chicago’s gay, black, lady mayor Lori Lightfoot has blown-up negotiations between the Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teacher’s Union. Again. The district and mayor's office jointly told teachers if they do not show up in person for their in-service (read: no students) day today, they will be locked out of their virtual learning accounts at the end of the day, setting the stage for a strike. Later in the day, they pulled this punch, calling for a "cooling off" period, but they certainly waited until after things deteriorated. [more inside]
posted by kaelynski at 4:09 PM PST - 38 comments

On Beeing

Act 1: Release The Bees!
Act 2: Re-Release The Bees! [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine at 2:29 PM PST - 16 comments

They Were Still in Love With Being The Clash

Sandinista! has so many of the Clash’s peak moments: “Hitsville U.K.,” “Up in Heaven (Not Only Here),” “The Call Up,” “The Magnificent Seven,” “Washington Bullets,” “Police on My Back.” It also has loads of stoner rubbish — 36 tracks, at least one third filler. There was a message scrawled in the vinyl outgroove, spread over the six sides: “In Space … No One … Can … Hear … You … CLASH! from In Praise of ‘Sandinista!’: Why the Clash’s Triple-Album Mess Is Also Their Masterpiece [Rolling Stone]
posted by chavenet at 1:53 PM PST - 35 comments

My Misspent Youth

How the author's Manhattan dream turned into a credit-card nightmare. "There are days when my debt seems to be at the center of my being, a cancer that must be treated with the morphine of excuses and rationales and promises to myself that I'm going to come up with the big score—book advance, screenplay deal, Publisher's Clearing House prize—and save myself. There are other days when the debt feels like someone else's cancer, a tragedy outside of myself, a condemned building next door that I try to avoid walking past. I suppose that's why I'm even able to publicly disclose this information."
posted by folklore724 at 1:40 PM PST - 29 comments

Mom and daughter fight Covid in SF

It’s Saturday, or Day 7 of the 16-hour-workday streak for Susana and Susy Rojas, the mother and daughter duo who run the Community Wellness Team for the UCSF/Latino Task Force test and research campaigns. The mother, 48, and daughter, 27, huddle over a desk strewn with papers and a laptop. Susy runs her eyes over the latest list of San Franciscans who tested positive for Covid-19 and need help. Mission Local profiles Susana and Susy Rojas, key players in the Covid-19 response in San Francisco's Mission District and the latest in a line of matriarchal activists. [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna at 1:37 PM PST - 5 comments

TROLL BRIDGE | The Moving Picture

More than 15 years in the making, a Thrillinge Saga in a Worlde Gone Madde, from Century of the Fruitbat Snowgum Films, a short film adaptation of Terry Pratchett's Troll Bridge (YouTube). [more inside]
posted by MattWPBS at 10:09 AM PST - 22 comments

Cab Ride

Drive a train, forever, through a dreamlike land.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 9:31 AM PST - 15 comments

The climate crisis Is worse than you can imagine

"A climate scientist spent years trying to get people to pay attention to the disaster ahead. His wife is exhausted. His older son thinks there’s no future. And nobody but him will use the outdoor toilet he built to shrink his carbon footprint."
posted by simmering octagon at 8:17 AM PST - 151 comments

"You hear whatever’s scheduled for that moment."

Mike Pennisi built a "magic radio": "Years ago, I had this idea for a gimmicky MP3 player. It wouldn’t have a screen or any buttons; instead, it would play music and podcasts on a pre-defined schedule. I’d build it into an antique radio so that using it might feel a little like listening to an authentic radio station." The project has given Pennisi "a better appreciation of how friction can enhance an interaction". Source code and tips for getting started are available.
posted by brainwane at 5:35 AM PST - 18 comments

Sneaking, Urgency, Misdirection, Scarcity, Obstruction and more!

A large-scale analysis of the Dark Patterns used in around 11,000 shopping websites. [more inside]
posted by Stark at 5:09 AM PST - 43 comments

A Vast Web of Vengeance

Kashmir Hill on the outrageous lies that destroyed Guy Babcock’s online reputation (NYT/Archive.is) "When he went hunting for their source, what he discovered was worse than he could have imagined."
posted by adrianhon at 4:34 AM PST - 27 comments

Mr. Yeats and the Beastly Coins

In 1926, the Irish Free State (at the time still a Dominion of the British Empire) decided to create its own coinage, and asked Senator WB Yeats to chair a committee to choose the design for the coins. "Mr. Yeats and the Beastly Coins"(2016) is a short film (12 min) describing the process, which wasn't without controversy. [more inside]
posted by scorbet at 3:57 AM PST - 10 comments

How cheap money and social media algorithms ruled the past decade

Goodbye 2010s: techno-optimism edition The Margins is a financial newsletter by former Uber engineer Can Duruk and former currency trader Ranjan Roy, covering the intersection of Silicon Valley and Wall Street, previously of Pizza Arbitrage fame. In this retrospective they explain how cheap money and contentious social media algorithms shaped our past decade. Their two case studies: Kylie Jenner and Elon Musk. [more inside]
posted by Apocryphon at 1:40 AM PST - 8 comments