April 2020 Archives

April 30

Famous People’s Bookshelves

In quarantine, people are inadvertently exposing their reading habits A highbrow listicle for the NY Times set. I found this enjoyable. YMMV.
posted by latkes at 8:30 PM PST - 69 comments

Bad Seed TeeVee

Nick Cave has launched a 24/7 streaming channel of his music on YouTube. In the past few hours, I've seen about a 50/50 mix of live performances and videos and one very brief interview. Link to the channel.
posted by bendy at 8:24 PM PST - 5 comments

There will be pillaging and raiding.

Assassin's Creed Valhalla [Official Game Trailer] “Ubisoft is adding Vikings to its Assassin series. Valhalla stars Eivor, a Viking raider, as he or she (players will be able to chose the gender of their character, as well as customize their look) leads clans “from the harsh shores of Norway to a new home amid the lush farmlands of ninth-century England.” From there, players will build settlements through customization and upgrades, while also raiding fortresses and forging alliances. The game is expected for launch for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, and Stadia, as well as Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5.” [via: The Verge] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 6:17 PM PST - 61 comments

The Islamic History of Coffee

Sufi Muslims in Yemen would boil up the grounds of their coffee cherry leaves and pass around a dark potion as they prepared for a night of dhikr, or meditative chanting. A sixteenth-century Muslim writer named Abd al-Qadir al-Jaziri noted the habits of the mystics: [more inside]
posted by Ahmad Khani at 6:08 PM PST - 22 comments

Art, angle, balance. This will age well. 8/10

Rate my Skype/Zoom room (SLTwitter account). For Twitter-averse, LA Mag also wrote a short piece with embedded highlights: This Twitter Account Is Savaging Politicians’ and Pundits’ Skype Environs
posted by spamandkimchi at 3:10 PM PST - 32 comments

The Deconstruction

The Deconstruction is a global creative collaboration event held online (and in real life) for artists, makers, creators, students, parents, and everyone else! "This year's theme is about rethinking the spaces between us and “Deconstructing Distance”. During a 48-hour window you re-imagine the topic and create something completely new with resources you already have on hand. It can be a game, a piece of art, an invention, a song, a solution, a poem, a pizza." [more inside]
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:57 PM PST - 1 comment

Fifteen Monsters All In A Row

Fifteen Monsters All In A Row [via mefi projects]
posted by aniola at 12:54 PM PST - 38 comments

Rage Within the Machine

OpenAI's newest unholy creation is Jukebox, a pop-music-generating neural network bringing you hits like Kanye West's "Lose Yourself", an alternative Rickroll, the Verve Pipe singing about pasghetti, and 7,000+ more samples.
posted by theodolite at 10:37 AM PST - 61 comments

Maintinaing a little bit of (ab)normal in unusual times

People are finding new ways to maintain normalcy in unusual times, and makeup routines are no different. Well, they are and they aren't. Enough talking, time for videos: face masks can reduce the total makeup time [YouTube], or you could put makeup on the mask [YT]. Otherwise, you could make a tiny face above your mask, which may or may not be inspired by Tim and Eric [via Mltshp]. Alternatively, a cloth mask with a clear plastic portion over the mouth [Lex18] allow others to see more of your face, which also benefits those who are deaf or hard of hearing. Here's a video tutorial to make similar masks, and another tutorial [YTx2].
posted by filthy light thief at 10:18 AM PST - 9 comments

Men give up reading a book before page 50

Turns out men give up on books they don’t like way more easily than women do (LitHub): According to a recent study of ebook usage in the UK, conducted by the Audience Agency, men are likely to give up reading a book before page 50, while women more often make it to page 100 (at least). [...] And don’t blame television. “Netflix binge-watchers aren’t necessarily less likely to finish reading a book,” wrote Sophia Woodley and Oliver Mantell, the authors of the report. “If they are genre fans on Netflix and are reading a genre book, there is in fact a positive correlation.”
posted by not_the_water at 8:49 AM PST - 97 comments

Spinosaurus fossil shreds history of swimming dinosaurs

This story of a new discovery of additional tail bones reshapes what we know about Spinosaurus. Previously.
posted by toastyk at 7:55 AM PST - 8 comments

Long time, waiting to feel the sound

Long Distance Runaround is a single from Yes's 1971 album Fragile. Originally written as a B-side to Roundabout, the song became a radio hit on its own. Though extremely short by Yes standards, the song still manages to cram in plenty of delightful prog-rock flourishes, including a key change and some rhythmic shenanigans. Also true to the band's nature, the songwriting credit is a source of acrimony and passive aggression. [more inside]
posted by saladin at 7:43 AM PST - 23 comments

A Different Flavor of Marathon

There are many ways of combining ice cream and marathons. There's even a song.
posted by rikschell at 7:09 AM PST - 4 comments

The Doctor, The Disease, and The Division

Outside the hospital, cut off from friends and family like everyone else in New York, I’ve spent much of my social isolation on my PC. I keep logging into Ubisoft’s accidentally, unfortunately prescient 2019 online action game The Division 2. Here I am, a physician in a time of pestilence, spending my few free hours playing a game set in a fictional America torn apart by plague.
posted by postcommunism at 6:13 AM PST - 17 comments

A Mile an Hour

A different kind of marathon; running one lap an hour, for 24hrs, around my perfectly mile long block. The rest of the time I do as much as possible; making things, odd jobs, fixing stuff. It's about running, doing, and thinking. (SLYT)
posted by Etrigan at 6:06 AM PST - 8 comments

Separation has been forcing people to think about others

Humans are not selfish by nature Despite the scam artists taking the opportunity to capitalize on the fears of others, the pandemic and social distancing has caused many to have an overwhelming need to comfort and care for others.
posted by Yellow at 4:32 AM PST - 10 comments

The Man Who Runs 365 Marathons a Year

A different portrait of an extreme endurance runner, from Outsideonline:
One day, Michael Shattuck started to run. He liked it, so he ran longer, sometimes for as many as 65 hours each week. He never wanted to stop. What was he running from?
posted by growabrain at 3:57 AM PST - 17 comments

It's a big swamp

“Malaysia” was shorthand for a gigantic fraud—possibly the largest in financial history—in which, beginning in 2009, billions of dollars were diverted from a Malaysian sovereign-wealth fund called 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) into covert campaign-finance accounts, U.S. political campaigns, Hollywood movies, and the pockets of innumerable other recipients. [more inside]
posted by blue shadows at 12:12 AM PST - 9 comments

April 29

Happy Birthday, Duke.

I was driving through New Jersey and heard a radio station holding a marathon of Duke Ellington recordings in chronological order. I particularly noticed a series of alternate takes of "Creole Rhapsody". [more inside]
posted by acrasis at 7:28 PM PST - 7 comments

♫ A roundup of video game music podcasts. ♪

Super Marcato Bros. Sound of Play. Rhythm and Pixels. VGMpire. Video Game Groove. Game Audio Podcast. VGM101. A Band of Gamers. VGMbassy. Pixelated Audio. Retro Gaming Boombox. Pixel Beat. WaveBack. Game That Tune. Music Respawn. Sound of Gaming. The Legacy Music Hour Podcast. VGM Tracker.
posted by Fizz at 4:58 PM PST - 3 comments

When Codependency Feels Like a Disease

Nina Renata Aron on Being in Love With an Addict "If there isn’t coffee or milk at home, I simply wait. The day might take on a different shape, a detour to stop at a café or a trip to the market... This isn’t like that. The necessity of getting drugs and the wolfish entitlement to be high arrive anew each morning with the rosy light of daybreak, and he sets about, diversionless, feeding that urge." [more inside]
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 12:59 PM PST - 47 comments

MST3K, pandemic style

Joel Hodgson has announced via the AV Club that they're doing a special live show of Mystery Science Theater 3000 on May 3 (Sunday) at 6 PM Eastern, over a variety of venues including Twitch, YouTube, Facebook and others, riffing over the Season One episode Moon Zero Two.
posted by JHarris at 12:08 PM PST - 12 comments

Dear Ireland

What do we want to be to one another? What do we want our society to look like? What are we not paying enough attention to? Where do we want to go next? What should Ireland write on a postcard to itself? [more inside]
posted by stonepharisee at 11:46 AM PST - 2 comments

This Meme Does Not Exist

AI Memes by Imgflip with a stream of Memes generated by the AI meme generator
posted by chavenet at 11:08 AM PST - 46 comments

Happy Birthday, Willie!

All 143 Willie Nelson Albums, Ranked. Willie turns 87 today! There'll be a special broadcast on youtube of his 1976 appearance on Austin City Limits -- starts at 4:20 Central, don't forget!
posted by Capt. Renault at 10:09 AM PST - 24 comments

Warp Earth Catalog, a new weekly digital zine/ mixtape

Warp Earth Catalog is a weekly mixtape of ideas to inspire, inform, enable and energize creativity and positivity in a time of global disruption and uncertainty. Based on the classic countercultural guide the Whole Earth Catalog (Internet Archive collection)and its credo of ‘access to tools’, these are tools for strength, awareness and thoughtful entertainment. From wherever in the world we are, let’s support each other, make things and help maintain the ecosystem of independent creativity. The first issue from Warp Records (previously) is available now.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:27 AM PST - 9 comments


Sharing a bed with 3 pugs. (slyt)
posted by bonobothegreat at 9:11 AM PST - 14 comments

Seattle's leaders let scientists take the lead. New York's did not.

"The initial coronavirus outbreaks in New York City emerged at roughly the same time as those in Seattle. But the cities’ experiences with the disease have markedly differed. By the second week of April, Washington State had roughly one recorded fatality per fourteen thousand residents. New York’s rate of death was nearly six times higher. The cities' leaders acted and communicated very differently in the early stages of the pandemic." [more inside]
posted by entropone at 9:08 AM PST - 75 comments

Professional women, childcare, and emotional labor in the pandemic

When Mom’s Zoom Meeting Is the One That Has to Wait, New York Times. “It’s like our economy is this house of cards for women and it is just toppling down,” says Cecile Richards, a founder of SuperMajority, a new political organization aimed at energizing female voters. “All of the structural problems that we’ve all known intellectually you can now see in pretty much every woman’s daily life.”
posted by bile and syntax at 8:35 AM PST - 64 comments

We're comin' outta the kitchen, there's something we forgot to say to u

1985 was a ridiculously strong year for music releases. April 29, 1985, Eurythmics' fourth album Be Yourself Tonight became a worldwide success [YT album link, 44m] with several hit singles, and moved their sound from synth-pop to rock. Side A: Would I Lie To You? [video], There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart) [video], I Love You Like A Ball And Chain, Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves (with Aretha Franklin) [video] [yes, this video was in 1985] [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 5:58 AM PST - 18 comments

“We are like items to them; they can’t go without us.”

Nannies Tell the Truth About Working During the Coronavirus (SL The Cut) "A lot of nannies from the Caribbean have died. We have a nannies group, and they would post the people. It’s about ten to 15 from the Caribbean. A lot of them had to go into work, and that’s one of the reasons why I think so many of them lost their lives. We know that money is important, but I would have really not gone into work. Because if you have the money and you lose your life, what sense does it make?"
posted by daybeforetheday at 2:50 AM PST - 18 comments

love smile dream RAGE

This Killing in the Name cover by audrey will fuck up your day with utter authority-smashing cuteness. Autocrats beware.
posted by Ten Cold Hot Dogs at 2:06 AM PST - 16 comments

Black hole orbital mechanics

"The OJ 287 galaxy hosts one of the largest black holes ever found - over 18 billion times the mass of our Sun. Orbiting this behemoth is another black hole with about 150 million times the Sun's mass. Twice every 12 years, the smaller black hole crashes through the enormous disk of gas surrounding its larger companion, creating a flash of light brighter than a trillion stars - brighter, even, than the entire Milky Way galaxy. The light takes 3.5 billion years to reach Earth." Researchers are able to both predict and see this flash of light (NASA Press Release) (Here’s a video) [more inside]
posted by vacapinta at 1:28 AM PST - 17 comments

April 28

Simon Suggested Setting it in a Pie Crust

Recipe - Translucent Pumpkin Pie [more inside]
posted by lucidium at 11:37 PM PST - 40 comments

Helping your children process COVID-19 emotions.

Helping children express, understand and grow from their emotions during Covid-19 is a skill that will last into their adult lives. This article has some great tips for helping parents and children work through feelings around the virus.
posted by smoke at 8:08 PM PST - 11 comments

Pandemic science is out of control

A toxic legacy of poor-quality research, media hype, lax regulatory oversight, and vicious partisanship has come home to roost in the search for effective treatments for COVID-19.
posted by latkes at 1:49 PM PST - 38 comments

“When these six destinies entwine, their world will be born anew...”

The Trials Of Mana Remake Proves Square Enix Can Faithfully Redo A Classic '90s RPG [Kotaku] “The second high-definition remake of a 90s-era Square Enix role-playing game coming out this month is much more faithful to the original than Final Fantasy VII. Beneath Trials of Mana’s cartoonish 3D makeover and questionable voice acting, it’s the same simple, satisfying action RPG it’s always been. Trials of Mana began as Seiken Densetsu 3, the 1995 Super Famicom sequel to classic action RPG Secret of Mana. Though Western fans have been playing for two decades via unofficial translations, the game did not see an official English release until June 2019 as part of the Collection of Mana compilation. Now, less than a year since the original was officially introduced to the Western world, we’ve got a high-definition 3D remake.” [Game Trailer] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 1:22 PM PST - 14 comments

Father and Daughter Growing Up

Daddy and Daughter Painting Portraits Together from Baby to 5 Years Old
posted by lungtaworld at 12:38 PM PST - 9 comments

World's biggest film festivals unite for 10-day streaming event

From May 29 to June 7, the public will be able to stream movies, panel discussions, and events curated by the world’s biggest film festivals. Organized by Tribeca Enterprises and YouTube, We Are One: A Global Film Festival will feature content curated by the following festivals: Annecy (Animation), Berlin, BFI London, Cannes, Guadalajara, Macao, Jerusalem, Mumbai, Karlovy Vary, Locarno, Marrakech, New York, San Sebastian, Sarajevo, Sundance, Sydney, Tokyo, Toronto, Tribeca, and Venice. All programming will be available for free, and without ads, at youtube.com/weareone. Viewers will be asked to make donations to the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund and local relief organizations all over the world.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:21 PM PST - 8 comments

Drinking almost killed him; then it became his great subject

Jason Isbell’s Redemption Songs (GQ): A decade after bottoming out and cleaning up, Jason Isbell has become the last of his kind: a guitar-playing, compulsively honest, relentlessly consistent songwriter. Oh, and he slays on Twitter too. Zach Baron goes to Isbell's family home near Franklin, Tennessee, and finds there's no question the four-time Grammy winner won't answer.
posted by not_the_water at 10:12 AM PST - 27 comments

Just some oak and some pine and a handful of... good social policies

George Lakey is an American Quaker activist and educator who helped create the Global Nonviolent Action Database. He also co-founded the Earth Quaker Action Team to work on issues of environmental justice. Lakey's two most recent books, Viking Economics and How We Win, seek to map out a realistic and nonviolent path for moving the US toward a Nordic-style social welfare economy. [more inside]
posted by sockshaveholes at 9:36 AM PST - 7 comments

Why Americans Don’t Vote Their Class Anymore

Why Americans Don’t Vote Their Class AnymoreNew York Magazine's Eric Levitz on the declining correlation between American voters' socioeconomic class and their partisan voting behavior [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu at 9:35 AM PST - 122 comments

The practical joke that changed baseball history

How a Boston sports radio prank led to Pete Rose being banned from baseball.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:27 AM PST - 8 comments

Dinosaurs Is the Only Family Sitcom Grim Enough for This Moment

"I’ve felt something like this before, some adulterated version of the family sitcom that shook me up because the stakes under the veneer of normalcy were off. It finally hit me when Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick suggested some weeks ago that the elderly were prepared to sacrifice themselves for the economy. I was catapulted back to a point in the spring of 1991 when, staring horrified at my television screen, I watched the grandmother in a family sitcom fix herself up beautifully in order to be thrown off a cliff." [more inside]
posted by clawsoon at 8:20 AM PST - 37 comments

Just how does Kidz Bop censor songs?

Let's find out. (SLThePudding)
posted by Etrigan at 6:28 AM PST - 23 comments

'Try touching two symbols at once and saying "begin begin begin"'

When Adrian Grey started having wifi problems, he hit up his ISP, Veil Broadband, on Twitter, only to get the typical runaround. SL Twitter thread.
posted by nerdfish at 5:14 AM PST - 28 comments

Cautiously optimistic?

Terry Pratchett novels to get ‘absolutely faithful’ TV adaptations.
posted by Literaryhero at 4:52 AM PST - 41 comments

COVID-19 responses in Africa: Ok, one size doesn’t fit all. Now what?

COVID-19 responses in Africa: Ok, one size doesn’t fit all. Now what? Since the COVID-19 pandemic started spreading, it has been clear that the societies of the developing world face dreadful challenges. Even in wealthy countries, where health systems are relatively strong and foreign reserves are deep, the health and economic impacts of the crisis are daunting. How should governments of poorer, less industrialised countries respond? [more inside]
posted by Zumbador at 4:01 AM PST - 7 comments

April 27

Graffiti Rock: a look back at the future of hip-hop from 1984

"Well party people in the place to be, you just tuned into the #1 crazy-fresh show we call Graffiti Rock." A snapshot of 1984, something like Soul Train for hip-hop, except only the pilot was made. Featuring Run D.M.C., Kool Moe Dee, Shannon, and New York City Breakers. Despite being a one-off show, it had a lasting impact (New York Times), with the Beastie Boys sampling Michael Holman's presentation, and Arsonists & Non Phixion recreated the set for the video of "14 Years Of Rap," then parodied in Gnarls Barkley's video for "Run." Bonus: DVD extra features, with 42 minutes of vintage footage.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:40 PM PST - 4 comments

"It's very much like graffitiing except less likely to piss people off."

Oakland's Stealth Arborist
Last fall, two very different approaches to addressing climate change unfolded in the Bay Area. One Atmosphere commissioned a 60-by-30-foot mural of climate activist Greta Thunberg for San Francisco’s Union Square. Painted on the side of an eight-story building, the fiery teenager looks determined and unbowed, gazing down at pedestrians and traffic with eyes the size of windscreens. Per the sponsoring organization, a rendering of the Swedish teen as big as Washington’s face on Mount Rushmore is an effective way to honor and amplify a message of environmental stewardship for a warming planet. Meanwhile, across the bay, Tony Santoro’s Guide to Illegal Tree-Planting debuted. The 23-minute video—released the week before the mural’s reveal—is the work of a tattooed, foulmouthed Chicago transplant who for the past few years has been quietly greening up Oakland.
[more inside]
posted by Lexica at 6:12 PM PST - 23 comments

When you immigrated to Toronto 40 years ago, but you still miss Greece

For over 30 years, 1016 Shaw Street, the "Parashos family's house" residential masterpiece has delighted and bewildered passers-by with its unapologetic design and annual sign wishing all Torontonians a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. (Via)
posted by growabrain at 3:37 PM PST - 24 comments

Have you always wanted to try bangs? Try bangs.

Cut your own hair. Dye it pink. In quarantine, there are no rules. [Vox] “Besides those who need to trim their hair for practical reasons, people have always impulsively cut or dyed their hair in moments of crisis, whether in an attempt to shed a former self or get over a breakup. It’s a common trope in film and TV, where dramatic haircuts act as stand-ins for emotional change (see: Hannah Horvath on Girls, Mulan in Mulan). As Joseph Longo writes in Mel Magazine, “It’s a rite of passage for queer people, specifically naive white gays like myself, to reach for the peroxide bottle when facing a minor inconvenience. It almost always makes things worse.” I’m not sure if anyone cut their hair during the black plague pandemic in 1347, but I bet some of them did. There’s a new pandemic now, one that requires us to stay home and distance ourselves from everyone except the mirror. Enter: the quarantine haircut (or the bleach, or the buzz).” [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 1:02 PM PST - 95 comments

"For some reason I never considered this possibility."

A scorpion, not knowing how to swim, asked a frog to carry it across the river. (SLTumblr)
posted by cosmic owl at 12:40 PM PST - 79 comments

The Rematch

The hare's loss loss to a tortoise was an athletic humiliation on an unprecedented scale. But what came afterwards? And what if there was a rematch? A 23 page comic by John Guilyard.
posted by Lorc at 12:08 PM PST - 14 comments

Take Me To The World

As a tribute to Stephen Sondheim (who is still alive, take a breath folks), ALL THE STARS IN THE SKY got together (separately) to sing his songs. [more inside]
posted by blurker at 11:33 AM PST - 19 comments

Dressing up in Isolation

""I quickly realised that with no work and no social life, I had gone from having no time to having plenty..." All excuses I gave myself for not pursuing my creative ideas prior were now void.
posted by dfm500 at 11:21 AM PST - 7 comments

Tattoos were a growing and accepted phenomenon in Victorian England

"When [Thomas Whitton] arrived on the shores of Australia a year later, the brown haired, blue-eyed Londoner had acquired some interesting tattoos on his long voyage. On his right arm there was a tribute to a girl with the words "love to thy heart" and on his left, images of two men with a bottle and glass, a mermaid, an anchor and the initials "R.R." Whitton (who was eventually freed at the age of 20) was just one of 58,002 Victorian convicts whose tattoo descriptions we found as we data-mined the judicial archives (criminaltattoos.github.io). At the time, some commentators believed that "persons of bad repute" used tattoos to mark themselves "like savages" as a sign they belonged to a criminal gang. But our database reveals that convict tattoos expressed a surprisingly wide range of positive and indeed fashionable sentiments. And convicts were by no means the only Victorians who acquired them." (CNN) [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 10:09 AM PST - 6 comments

‘Toute la littérature, c’est: ta, ta, ta, ta, ta, ta.’

"I am perhaps the king of failures because I'm certainly the king of something."
Arthur Cravan, born Fabian Avenarius Lloyd, was a Swiss born Dadaist poet-boxer.
He was neither a good poet nor a good boxer, but he was a legendary provocateur. [more inside]
posted by adamvasco at 7:33 AM PST - 6 comments

'Ello, I wish to register a complaint.

A Canadian man wished to complain about a parrot what he purchased not long ago from this boutique. [more inside]
posted by Cardinal Fang at 6:57 AM PST - 15 comments

Rock paper scissors is officially gambling

As bad as things are, at least you're not the guy who had to go all the way to the Quebec Court of Appeal to void a $517,000 bet on three games of rock paper scissors. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 6:24 AM PST - 39 comments

April 26

The British Once Built a 1,100-Mile Hedge Through the Middle of India

The British Empire had been working on this giant hedge for at least 30 years. It had, at long last, reached “its greatest extent and perfection,” wrote Roy Moxham in The Great Hedge of India. [...] One British official wrote that it “could be compared to nothing else in the world except the Great Wall of China.” ¶ As he reported on the extent and health of the hedge [in 1878], though, Halsey knew its time was coming to an end. That same year, the empire stopped all funding for the mad project, and it was not long before the hedge had disappeared entirely. When Moxham, an English writer, went looking for it in 1996, he couldn’t find a trace. In search of Colonial India's British "Customs Hedge" (Atlas Obscura) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:12 PM PST - 40 comments

As above, so below

As Above is a short film exploring the tight link between the microscopic world and immensity of the universe. Illustrating our universe’s never ending dance of destruction and creation, in which life can emerge...

As Above was made of one single shot filmed on the 8mm2 (0.3 square inch) surface of a chemical reaction.

posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:30 PM PST - 5 comments

Definitely not long-armed men in fur suits

Gibbons hang out, run about, freak out about animals (rodent, dog, hedgehog), bother animals (dog, tiger), photobomb opera performances and make babies cry. [more inside]
posted by catcafe at 8:12 PM PST - 11 comments

There never was a Monique III

A Space Elk Named Monique - Recently I found myself wondering about the animal subjects who participated, unwillingly and unwittingly, in their development. Who was the first creature to wear a satellite collar, and how did it go? [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:06 PM PST - 4 comments

Quantum Steampunk PopularMechanics.com

Popularmechanics.com article on Quantum Steampunk an interesting synthesis of modern quantum physics and nineteenth century engineering. [more inside]
posted by Narrative_Historian at 5:47 PM PST - 3 comments

Big Leaf Maple Syrup

Native to the west coast of North America, the big leaf maple (called such as its leaves can be almost a foot wide) has always been talked about as being able to produce maple syrup from its sap. For the first time, it's being studied if it's possible to commercialize big maple syrup in the Pacific Northwest (Seattle Times, use incognito mode if you have to). There's already one company able to make 500 gallons a year (NPR). Perhaps, you'd like to buy some at $3/ounce?
posted by ShooBoo at 5:46 PM PST - 9 comments

You’d have to be a monotonous nerd to go through them all . . .

Composer Alex Ball (previously) continues his series on influential early commercial synthesizers with a feature-length documentary: Electromotive — The Story of ARP Instruments. This follows last year’s Land of the Rising Sound | A Roland Retrospective (previously), and The History of the Prophet Synthesizer from 2018. [more inside]
posted by mubba at 3:57 PM PST - 10 comments

A face badly in need of a fist

Useful words with no direct English equivalent.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 12:11 PM PST - 100 comments

Twitch.tv is more than just video-games:

24/7 Bob Ross, 24/7 Food Shows, 24/7 Iron Chef Japan, 24/7 Anthony Bourdain, 24/7 MST3K, 24/7 Public Domain Copyright Free Films, 24/7 Most Extreme Elimination Challenge MXC!, CritterVision: deer, raccoons, geese, possums, foxes, squirrels, etc., 24/7 Eagle-cam, 24/7 Choppertown: chops, trucks, cars, etc., 24/7 PokerStars.
posted by Fizz at 10:09 AM PST - 44 comments


April 26th is Alien Day! Twitter celebrates with delightful material in their #AlienDay hashtag. My favorite thus far uses office supplies to a menacing end. Happy Alien Day! Hug a face hugger!
posted by hippybear at 5:44 AM PST - 15 comments

Ma La Notte, No!

Back in the 80's singer songwriter impresario jazzman Renzo Arbore ran a variety show on Italian televsion called Quelli della notte, launching pad for Roberto Benigni among others, the theme song of which was Ma La Notte, No!, (lyrics here), the basic sense of it being that the slings and arrows might trouble you during the day time, But At Night - Not! Well. Corona changes everything, and twenty Neapolitans with time on their hands and a song in their hearts have updated the piece to In Quarantina Sto! (Italian subtitles for those unfamiliar with Neapolitan dialect). Music starts at fifty second mark. [more inside]
posted by BWA at 5:18 AM PST - 3 comments


Our Hands by Abdellatif Abdul-Hamid (1982): the filmmaker’s first short film with the National Film Organization, produced after his return to Syria from the Soviet Union, Our Hands is a compelling visual essay on labouring, gesturing hands. [content warning: scenes of animal injury and death] [more inside]
posted by Ten Cold Hot Dogs at 4:31 AM PST - 4 comments

April 25

Gorgeous Libraries

"Given that it’s currently National Library Week, there is no better time to visit (albeit virtually) some of the most impressive libraries in the world," via this House Beautiful listicle (with a crucial assist from Google Arts & Culture). [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol at 4:27 PM PST - 21 comments

Stop Using Dark Mode

I’m going to preface this by saying I love dark mode. It started with my desktop Kindle app, and as soon as it was rolled out everywhere, I switched everything over to the soothing white-on-black aesthetic. My eyes rejoiced, and I too decried this mad blog calling dark mode a crutch for suckers.

But oh, I have now seen the light.
(Victoria Song, Gizmodo)
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 3:12 PM PST - 99 comments

Your Dinosaurs Are Wrong

Your Dinosaurs Are Wrong [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 2:18 PM PST - 26 comments

Santa Cruz island foxes, positive indicators of ecological restoration

But things happened in that dark era [of the 1960s and 1970s] that were not dark. Choices made by groups and individuals would, half a century later, lead to a story about those island foxes (Wikipedia) and some humans who loved them, a story that would look small and sadly familiar at first. But in the end, the story of the foxes [...] are less like dead canaries [in a coalmine] and more like larks in the morning sun. The uplifting tale of these tiny island foxes, nearly wiped out by disaster (National Geographic) -- Earth Day began after a catastrophic oil spill off California (LA Times). Leadership and science restored nature—and hope—through years of despair and controversy (NPS.gov).
posted by filthy light thief at 11:22 AM PST - 3 comments

In which we learn why Post Malone has "Stay Away" inked on his face...

In what might be *the* pop culture moment of social distancing, Post Malone (yes, that Post Malone) and friends completely channeled Nirvana in a set live streamed from Malone's Salt Lake City rec room for COVID19 charity. This is great fun and his performance is uncanny. Krist and Courtney approved.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:54 AM PST - 41 comments

Let me fasten that seatbelt for you

How Cornell Disguised Drivers to Gauge the Public's Reaction to Autonomous Vehicles — It may look and smell like a prank, but dressing someone up as a car seat is a serious endeavor. A team from Cornell Tech led a study in which a person was disguised as a car seat while driving through several international cities to gauge the public's reactions to driverless vehicles.
posted by cenoxo at 10:50 AM PST - 27 comments

Koopalings! Frog Suit! Super Acorn! More! Let's-a-go!

Finally, you can build an entire “game” out of Super Mario Maker 2 levels [World Maker Update][Version 3.0.0] [Patch Notes] “When the original Super Mario Maker came out on the Wii U nearly five years ago, we lamented how disjointed it felt to just play individual levels without "any sense of continuity or progression." We longed for a Mario Maker that let us arrange individual levels as building blocks to create "a complete game, one that progresses gently from easy to hard, teaching you new tricks and throwing in clever twists on old themes along the way." Nintendo will finally be making those dreams a reality with what it's calling the final major update to Super Mario Maker 2 on the Switch. The new World Maker mode will let you play with "All your ideas that couldn't be contained in a single course and share them with people around the globe," as the announcement video puts it. Yes, that includes the ability to create a world map, complete with bridges, hills, customized course icons, background elements, and a variety of cosmetic themes.” [via: Ars Technica] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 9:00 AM PST - 7 comments

F&^% jar sauce!

It's the swearingest Aussie YouTube cooking channel that we need in these difficult times. Nat's What I Reckon shows you how to make Quarantine Sauce, Carbo-Rona Sauce, Quarantine Spirit Risotto, End of Days Bolognese, Sin Bin Soup and the Crowd Goes Mild Curry. NSFWFH if you have kids or other sensitive humans around.
posted by rory at 7:02 AM PST - 23 comments

Kutiman dream jams

Remember Kutiman? His new #KutimanComeTogether Instagram micro-format features brief, subtly edited dream collaborations between musical greats. [more inside]
posted by progosk at 4:22 AM PST - 5 comments

A Turn of Phrase - Ella Baron's TLS cartoon.

Baron's latest full-page cartoon for the Times Literary Supplement incorporates 57 British figures of speech. I think I've identified about 45 of them (plus a few long-shot guesses), so don't venture below the fold if you want to avoid spoilers. [more inside]
posted by Paul Slade at 4:15 AM PST - 46 comments

The Yamaha TW200 is an on/off road motorcycle

The Yamaha TW200 is an on/off road motorcycle... The Yamaha TW200 is an on/off road motorcycle that has been produced largely unchanged for 30 years - it has a carburetor. It has a headlight and turn-signals. It has a very small single-cylinder air cooled motor, tuned for whatever the opposite of speed and power is. It has cartoonishly large tires. It will go anywhere you want it to. ANYWHERE. [more inside]
posted by Slap*Happy at 2:48 AM PST - 15 comments

April 24

meet HANK

On the podcast Macro Musings, Ben Moll is interviewed about Heterogenous Agent New Keynsian economic models [transcript] and how cutting-edge modeling applies to economic policymaking. ButHeterogeneous agents macroeconomics has a long history, even if these particular models are new: "Recent [2017] economic events cast doubt on the standard macroeconomic models. This column looks at new economic models built on the idea that inequality and income risk matter for the business cycle and long-run outcomes. While still in their infancy, these models show promise in addressing the concerns about the old New Keynesian models, and in bringing about a shift in the way that macroeconomists think about aggregate fluctuations and stabilisation policy." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:31 PM PST - 3 comments

Solidarity and diversity

Amazon-owned Whole Foods is quietly tracking its employees with a heat map tool that ranks which stores are most at risk of unionizing.(non-paywall link via MSN) The stores' individual risk scores are calculated from more than two dozen metrics, including employee "loyalty," turnover, and racial diversity; "tipline" calls to human resources; proximity to a union office; and violations recorded by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. [more inside]
posted by 445supermag at 3:48 PM PST - 22 comments

A Musical Interlude...

Gregorio Allegri's Miserere mei, Deus performed by the Tenebrae Choir, conducted by Nigel Short and filmed at St Bartholomew the Great, London...
posted by jim in austin at 2:18 PM PST - 12 comments

"… the contents [may] have mutated into something alive & malevolent."

Ever wondered what the contents of a twenty-five-year-old can of Spider-Man pasta look like?
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 2:10 PM PST - 26 comments

25 Movies and the Magazine Stories That Inspired Them

"Here are 25 gold-standard film adaptations of magazine articles, published over the course of half a century as cover stories, features, or breaking news, as well as direct links to read all 25 stories online." (Longreads) [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 1:46 PM PST - 20 comments

Planet of the Humans

Planet of the Humans is a documentary film by an environmentalist questioning the environmental movement and whether the proposed solutions are actual solutions. Directed by Jeff Gibbs. Produced by Ozzie Zehner. (YouTube video 1hour 40min). [more inside]
posted by phoque at 1:04 PM PST - 30 comments

and thus spake on that ancient man, the bright-eyed Mariner

The University of Plymouth's Art Institute commissioned an immersive, in-progress online reading of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner with different narrators and artwork. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 11:47 AM PST - 9 comments

It's a helluva thing, the gift of walking the world.

“Let me emphasize that this is not a guide, but it's also not not a guide. It's a collection of notes, tips, and, I guess, "travelogue" entries about walking the Ise-ji route of the Kumano Kodō. I wrote this because I love the Ise-ji, and want you, also, to think: Damn, that looks like a fine hike. So consider this a persuasion or seduction, a thing to bookmark and return to, for when you decide to give this walk a go. Consider it a playful dare, for when we can all go out and walk again.” Craig Mod (previously 1, 2, 3) walks along, photographs, and records ambient sounds from the mountain/coastal Ise-Ji pilgrimage route. (via Kottke)
posted by Maecenas at 10:52 AM PST - 4 comments

My Restaurant Was My Life for 20 Years. Does the World Need It Anymore

SLNYTimes essay by Gabrielle Hamilton Hamilton is a great writer, and this brought tears to my eyes. It has the Covid tag, so may be free. [more inside]
posted by mumimor at 9:55 AM PST - 64 comments

Hello, Gordon! Hello, Gordon! Hello, Gor--

Half-Life 1, in VR, except it's absurdist improv comedy. Act I, part 1 in a continuing series.
posted by cortex at 9:45 AM PST - 15 comments

“...but through the fairies, we could ask Mothra to help.”

Mothra (1961) [Original Trailer] A History of Mothra. The History Of Mothra's ROAR! Mothra's complete origin explained. The Surreal Wonderment of Godzilla vs. Mothra. Photo Reveals 4 Generations Of Mothra's Fairies In MonsterVerse. The '90s Mothra trilogy was trippy, kiddie, and criminally underrated. Mothra Becomes Electric: The myth and music of Kagura and ancient rural folk traditions in 1970s monster movies. Mothra: Yin to Godzilla’s Yang. Mothra: Feminist Hero. A Fan's Ranking of the Mothra Movies.
posted by Fizz at 8:37 AM PST - 14 comments

Evil Elvis sings Original Elvis

Glenn Danzig is well aware that his fans sometimes call him “Evil Elvis.” “That’s fine,” he says with a laugh. “Anytime someone mentions my name and Elvis’ name in the same sentence, that’s great. It doesn’t get better than that.” Danzig’s love for the King has been well documented over the years, as he’s covered Presley tracks [older YT playlist] going back to the early days of his pioneering punk group the Misfits. [Rolling Stone] Danzig now showcases his love of The King in the long-in-the-works Danzig Sings Elvis [YouTube playlist + playlist of Elvis originals]
posted by filthy light thief at 7:58 AM PST - 10 comments

Why your pet is acting like a weirdo during quarantine

The psychology behind your dog or cat’s new eating habits, constant whining, or extra-loud purring. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 7:44 AM PST - 24 comments

Heartwarming Friday Moment

Bored Panda has a thread of 35 examples of rescued cats photographed on adoption day and then again recently, and the cats and humans are beautiful people who all deserve each other.
posted by hippybear at 5:37 AM PST - 21 comments

"I'm The Dude, man."

We quote them. We sometimes act like them. Maybe we wish we were them? Famous actors discuss the most iconic characters they've played during their career: Nick Offerman, Guy Pearce, Martin Freeman, Ben Affleck, Diego Luna, Jack Black, Danny DeVito, Octavia Spencer, Ray Liotta, Mark Ruffalo, Tim Blake Nelson, Al Pacino, Edward Norton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Forest Whitaker, Cillian Murphy, Sarah Paulson, Gerard Butler, John Goodman, Kevin Bacon, Alan Cumming, Jake Gyllenhaal, Alec Baldwin, Sir Ben Kingsley, Ralph Fiennes, Pedro Pascal, Caleb Landry Jones, Tim Roth, Willem Dafoe, Ken Jeong, Andy Serkis, Jennifer Lopez, Claire Foy, Ben Mendelsohn, Alexander Skarsgard, Oscar Isaac, Jonah Hill, Eddie Redmayne, Sarah Jessica Parker, Greg Kinnear, Jeff Bridges, Michael Peña, Lucas Hedges, Adam Devine, Sissy Spacek, Kyle MacLachlan, Nicolas Cage, Jason Bateman, Mark Wahlberg, Ethan Hawke, Will Arnett, Simon Pegg, Evan Peters, Rob Schneider, Terry Crews, Hugh Grant, Paul Bettany, and Bill Hader.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 5:19 AM PST - 14 comments

Barbie's Woodshop

Drop your tools and follow Barbies's Woodshop on Instagram! Or read this interview, at least.
posted by Harald74 at 3:30 AM PST - 12 comments

"Something undeniably true"

Betraying my hometown. The great Chinese author Yan Lianke reflects on a changing relationship with home. From his memoir Three Brothers, translated by Carlos Rojas and excerpted in the Paris Review.
posted by tavegyl at 12:19 AM PST - 3 comments

A Cultural Touchstone Of His Time

Nick Douglas, The Glue Man
posted by Going To Maine at 12:03 AM PST - 3 comments

April 23

X drops their first album in 35 years.

Los Angeles’ premier punk band, X, are surprise-releasing Alphabetland, their first studio album in 35 years. Featuring the original line-up of John Doe, Exene Cervenka, Billy Zoom and D.J. Bonebrake, Alphabetland is at Bandcamp.
posted by Marky at 8:01 PM PST - 48 comments

"I can't remember anything like this happening before"

How will the coronavirus pandemic change Ramadan for Muslims? [more inside]
posted by Ahmad Khani at 7:45 PM PST - 5 comments

Around the world in 1,200 days… on a UNICYCLE

Five years ago, Ed Pratt (previously) was a fresh-faced 19-year-old setting out from Somerset to unicycle around the world to raise money for the School in a Bag charity. A bit more than three years later, after a trip that included many encounters and adventures riding through China, Southeast Asia, New Zealand, Australia, and the USA, he made it safely home. Ed recently uploaded the final episode, an epic (for him) hour and a quarter video covering the last segment riding from Edinburgh to Somerset: 1,200 DAYS Around The World On A Unicycle - RETURNING HOME [22,000 Miles Of Cycling].
posted by Lexica at 3:11 PM PST - 7 comments

Nothing to do with Sherlock

In 2011, the (UK) National Theatre presented a production of Frankenstein, in which Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller alternated the two lead roles. And filmed it. And are broadcasting both from April 30 through May 8, worldwide, on their youtube channel, as part of their National Theatre at Home program.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 1:52 PM PST - 26 comments

Can't meet you at the flagpole this year

For the first time since it began in 1970, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is canceled. Today would have been the first day, but instead we're Festing in Place with WWOZ's broadcast of past Jazz Fest sets. WWOZ released Cubes for all eight days, and a list of Jazz Fest food for home (mostly local pickup or delivery, but there are a few mail order options). [more inside]
posted by CheeseLouise at 12:32 PM PST - 10 comments

Living in a Ghost Town

The Rolling Stones have released their first new song for eight years. It's rather good.
posted by Paul Slade at 12:29 PM PST - 22 comments

This Masquerade

30 second T-shirt face mask.
posted by storybored at 11:58 AM PST - 21 comments

I am the best goddamn dancer in the American Ballet Academy.

To celebrate the release of Center Stage 20 years ago, Dance Spirit Magazine interviewed 5 of its stars about the making of the movie. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 11:29 AM PST - 12 comments

We was put here to be much more than that

Wale - Sue Me. SLYT.
posted by cashman at 10:51 AM PST - 2 comments

What Brought Beyoncé, U2, and BTS to Amish Country?

Next door is a building known as the Studio, a fifty-two-thousand-square-foot box sheathed in matte black sheet metal. It stands one hundred feet tall and has four loading docks and a door that a semi can drive through. A grid of steel beams along its ceiling can hold up to one million pounds of chains, motors, bumpers, trusses, lights, speakers, and screens. The Studio is the greatest rehearsal space in the world, used by the biggest acts in the world. [SL Esquire]
posted by ellieBOA at 10:30 AM PST - 16 comments

Your dad has no friends.

Makeup artists lip-syncing John Mulaney.
posted by clawsoon at 7:52 AM PST - 15 comments

Après Sufjan, le déluge

Sufjan Stevens gave up after two states. Joey Clift had nothing better to do while staying at home. So he put out a call to complete the 50 States Project. Half of the albums dropped last week; Clift plans to release the rest (including new takes on Illinois and Michigan, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico) next month.
posted by Etrigan at 7:32 AM PST - 37 comments

"that's what Handel would've done, but not Bach"

J.S. Bach’s “Twisted Hacker Mind” is a lecture by violinist Kathleen Kajioka about the strangeness of Bach's music. She plays two of his pieces and explains what is so odd about them.
posted by Kattullus at 6:00 AM PST - 18 comments

Getting it right (or not)

On Wired's Technique Critique, topical experts examine TV and movie clips and analyze their realism and accuracy: NASA astronaut Nicole Stott looks at 16 space scenes, then some more. Pro driver Wyatt Knox breaks down 16 driving scenes, then 18 more. Lawyer Lucy Lang breaks down 17 courtroom scenes. Surgical resident Annie Onishi breaks down 36 medical scenes, then another 22. Disease expert Brian Amman breaks down pandemic scenes. Movie accent expert Erik Singer breaks down 6 fictional languages, 28 actors playing presidents, and 17 actors playing real people. Hacker Samy Kamkar breaks down 26 hacking scenes. Robotics expert Chris Atkeson breaks down robot scenes. Former CIA Chief of Disguise Jonna Mendez breaks down 30 spy scenes. Forensics expert Matthew Steiner examines 20 crime scene investigations. [more inside]
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 5:14 AM PST - 37 comments

Walk of Art

Podcasts from the Tate. Be transported out of your living room and into nineties Shoreditch, sunny St Ives or the hidden depths of the River Thames.
posted by Segundus at 2:09 AM PST - 2 comments

#CUCChallenge - Covid-Approved Fighting

It's called the #CUCChallenge and it's all about fighting the coronavirus: Quarantined stunt performers from Campus Univers Cascades show us how to fight while social distancing.
posted by Cardinal Fang at 2:05 AM PST - 6 comments

April 22

The Hugos go Meta

The 2020 Hugo Award Finalists were announced on April 7th, including a ‘Best Related Work’ Nomination for Jeanette Ng’s acceptance speech for the 2019 John W. Campbell Award, which has been renamed this year as the Astounding Award because of her speech. [more inside]
posted by dinty_moore at 9:19 PM PST - 47 comments

Rediscovering folium to recreate historic blues and purples

Turnsole became a mainstay of medieval manuscript illuminators starting with the development of the technique for extracting it in the thirteenth century, when it joined the vegetable-based woad and indigo in the illuminator's repertory. [Wikipedia] For the better part of the last century, however, the recipe for the vivid blue hue has been lost—until the publication of a new study in the journal Science Advances. While it was long known that Chrozophora tinctoria was the source of the ink’s sole ingredient, how folium was synthesized has eluded modern science. [Atlas Obscura] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:15 PM PST - 13 comments

What time is it? Time to get wild and loose!

Appearing live via glorious VHS quality, and with a healthy dose of Jerome, The Time, Houston TX, 12/29/1982. 45 minutes pro-shot multicam of the most glorious bands-man-ship ever seen. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 9:03 PM PST - 10 comments

Steak-umm Bless Blue

Lately, one of the voices of reason coming from Twitter has surprisingly been Steak-umm. After their epic Twitter thread about critical thinking went viral, Washington Post tracked down and spoke to Nathan Allebach, their social media manager responsible for the feed. [more inside]
posted by Your Childhood Pet Rock at 5:53 PM PST - 51 comments

The Last Show Left on Earth

Last week, venerable improv troupe The Second City premiered a new weekly Internet variety show, The Last Show Left on Earth. The first episode features host Jack McBrayer, Fred Willard, Mike O'Brien, and musical guest Jeff Tweedy of Wilco, among others; its theme song is by Andrew Bird. New episodes premiere Thursday at 9PM ET/6PM PT on YouTube.
posted by carrienation at 5:18 PM PST - 1 comment

Go get yourself a licorice whip

The comedy troupe The State reunites to perform the classic musical number "Porcupine Racetrack" to mark its 25th anniversary. On Zoom, of course, times being what they are.
posted by Cash4Lead at 4:47 PM PST - 22 comments

"I told you this would exist."

Dr Jenny Clack, FRS, vertebrate palaeontologist, died on 26 March, aged 72. [more inside]
posted by thatwhichfalls at 4:22 PM PST - 13 comments

Here we come

"I've been craving an escape hatch from Twitter. So some friends and I made this. A live network of 20 streams dedicated to nature, music, and things that fascinate.Say hello to http://surf.city." [warning: strobing / light sensitivity] [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 3:40 PM PST - 21 comments

It's Murder on the Kitchen Floor

Sophie Ellis-Bexter and her family remind you to Stay At Home [more inside]
posted by WhackyparseThis at 3:20 PM PST - 13 comments

President Blake Orama just got kidnapped by ninja dragon terrorists!

Treachery In Beatdown City [YouTube][Game Trailer] “Treachery in Beatdown City looks like a new take on Double Dragon for the NES, but it actually plays a lot more like Bravely Default II or another high-level strategy turn-based RPG. That's what's going on under the hood. In terms of the body, it's a story of underdogs who aspire to upturn the system. That's just one of the ways it reminds me of Undertale, another game that looks like one thing but is something else entirely, that boldly wore its outsider status on its sleeve. Treachery ticks all the same boxes while delivering an entirely different message: sometimes, violence is good.” [via: Destructoid] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 3:07 PM PST - 9 comments

Animation & Poetry for the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day

Eleven short animated films from Pacific Northwest filmmakers in a 25-minute program, available from Earth Day (today!) until 4/26. [more inside]
posted by janell at 2:02 PM PST - 0 comments - Post a Comment

Yosemite webcams, among others

Yosemite webcams, among others...

What it says on the tin.

Scroll down below the Novel Coronavirus warning and behold. [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 2:00 PM PST - 3 comments

As you can see, making bagels is a huge pain in the ass

Henry Phillips conducts a masterclass on making authentic New York bagels. Perfect for these pandemic times when we're looking for distractions like baking things.
posted by NoMich at 12:57 PM PST - 49 comments

then, as farce

For centuries, even millenia, the wealthy and powerful have been able invest in one of the most treasured and lucrative financial products in human history: fine art. Conniseurs and patrons as diverse as oil barons, land barons and actual barons have reaped the rewards of taste, judgement and immense amounts of capital. But now, thanks to the power of blockchain technology (specifically, Ethereum), you too can own a (virtual) (fractional share of) some of the most impressive and valuable works of fine art in the world. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:56 AM PST - 17 comments

Jugaad Man aka Fb Mallick

I've recently been seeing this video of a dancing costumed man set to an electronic soundtrack reposted again and again on Facebook. Curious, I dug deeper... [more inside]
posted by Catblack at 11:17 AM PST - 7 comments

The archaeological record is full of dog poop

"Such ancient feces can hang around for thousands of years, even retaining their original shape and color. And archaeologists can typically differentiate human from animal poop, based on size and other attributes. But doggy dung, it turns out, is remarkably hard to distinguish from the human kind -- something that can stump researchers trying to reconstruct what ancient people ate. [...] Now, Warinner and colleagues have developed a tool based on artificial intelligence that they claim can accurately tell human and dog "paleofeces" apart. And after analyzing more than a dozen samples spanning thousands of years, they've come to a surprising conclusion: The archaeological record is full of dog poop." (Science) [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 10:00 AM PST - 7 comments

The Dangerous Rise of COVID-19 Influencers and Armchair Epidemiologists

I find myself increasingly obsessed with the rise of the so-called “COVID influencer” or armchair epidemiologist. These men — and they are, largely, men — are legitimate experts in other fields. They are lawyers, former reporters and thriller writers, Silicon Valley technologists, newspaper columnists, economists and doctors who specialize in different parts of medicine. Their utter belief in their own cognitive abilities gives them the false sense that their speculation, and predictive powers, are more informed than the rest of ours.
posted by latkes at 9:07 AM PST - 157 comments

Let's Chat About How Weird This Research Boat Is

I don’t spend much time thinking about boats or marine research these days, as I gave up on the marine biologist dream when I was 9 years old and found out the plesiosaur was extinct. But when I run across a boat as weird as the RP FLIP, as happened to me today, my brain goes into overdrive and it’s all I can think about. I’ve fallen into an information hole, so won’t you join me? (SLJalopnik)
posted by Etrigan at 7:28 AM PST - 41 comments

Classic Chinese Films on YT

12 Classic Chinese Films are Now Available for Free on YouTube with English Subtitles - Youtube playlist. (via Film Comment)
posted by sapagan at 5:13 AM PST - 10 comments

34 Performers, Role by Role

Famous performers review clips and walk through the timeline of their careers: Kristen Bell, Richard E. Grant, Mark Wahlberg, Martin Freeman, Anthony Mackie, Harrison Ford, Kumail Nanjiani, Terry Crews, Jude Law, Michael B. Jordan, Kathy Bates, Jamie Lee, Scarlett Johansson, Rob Lowe, Willem Dafoe, Miranda Lambert, Kerry Washington, Jessica Lange, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Richard Linklater, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Billy Eichner, Kristen Stewart, Richard Dreyfuss, John Turturro, Natalie Portman, Drew Barrymore, Jason Bateman, Michael Douglas, Jada Pinkett, Hank Azaria, Jodie Foster, Jeff Goldblum, and Hans Zimmer.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 4:56 AM PST - 9 comments

April 21

Descent into the Depths of the Earth

Heeringa and Wilhelmson built an entire dungeon-level into each drawer, painstakingly painted, staged and decorated. It’s intricate: the “tavern” includes a teeny tiny noticeboard where adventurers can leave notes for one other.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:08 PM PST - 17 comments

Classy Canadian Classics

A fine collection of short (virtual) classical performances from orchestras and choirs across Canada.
posted by storybored at 7:46 PM PST - 1 comment

Sheena is a Monk Rocker

Ramones / Teenage Lobotomy (Buddhist monk cover)
The Beatles / Yellow Submarine (Buddhist monk cover)
Queen / We Will Rock You (Buddhist monk cover)
THE BLUE HEARTS / リンダリンダ (Buddhist monk cover) [more inside]
posted by escape from the potato planet at 6:37 PM PST - 20 comments

Does Your Favorite Period Drama Pass the Bill & Ted Test?

I spent six years writing a book on Regency fashion, called Dress in the Age of Jane Austen. I have spent a lot of time looking at genuine Regency dress. But I also spent a lot of time in the last year or so doing a lot of tedious production work for the book. I watched a lot of films on the way. I love Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure. I was watching it in the background as I was copy editing my index or some tedious, tedious thing and just enjoying it. Then, we got to the bit where they kidnap Beethoven. My eye is so attuned to Regency dress, and anyone who follows my Twitter will know that I get quite opinionated about Regency costume on-screen. I was looking at the background extras, and I suddenly paused it and went, “Hang on a second.” I rewound it a bit and went through it in slow motion and went, “You know what? This is really, really good.” It’s a 1980s teen comedy. You don’t expect a high standard of costuming. After that, I thought, well, that’s it. That’s my benchmark. If the main characters’ costumes in a Regency production aren’t better done than the background extras’ in a 1980s teen comedy, I think you’ve failed in the costume design.
Fashion historian Hilary Davidson explains her unusual standard for judging Regency costumes.
posted by Lexica at 5:23 PM PST - 60 comments

Look to the skies, the Lyrids are back!

Spotted by stargazers for more than 2,700 years (Space.com), the Lyrids are one of the oldest known meteor showers and will be lighting up the sky tonight and tomorrow night. Right on cue to celebrate Earth Day at home (NASA tweet, April 21, 2020). The related NASA blog post also notes that this is in the middle of International Dark Sky Week, who have a YouTube playlist if you're not situated to view a clear night sky.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:00 PM PST - 7 comments

A Pincushion, Complete With Tiny Children's Heads

The topic of the current #CURATORBATTLE on Twitter, initiated by the Yorkshire Museum, is #CreepiestObject.
posted by carter at 3:08 PM PST - 18 comments

Canada's Sweetheart

In 1955, Maclean's magazine asked, Should We Kick Hal Banks Out of Canada? His allies in the labour union movement argued that he had done the job that the government of Louis St. Laurent had invited him to Canada to do, and that he should stay: "He threw out the Commies and got the ships sailing again." 40 years later, former merchant marine (and former Member for Kicking Horse Pass) Dave Broadfoot recalled to Parliament the "black chapter in our history" when Banks' men "came on our ships with baseball bats and bicycle chains." [more inside]
posted by clawsoon at 2:54 PM PST - 12 comments

Animal Crossing isn’t a game about capital EXCEPT IT ABSOLUTELY IS

Fan-Run Marketplaces Rise To Meet Animal Crossing: New Horizons Players' Needs [Kotaku] “Animal Crossing: New Horizons is nominally a chill game about seeing what each day holds and adjusting as you go. But if you’re an intense interior designer or an entrepreneurial turnip seller, you’ll want to pick up the pace. Thankfully, there’s an entire ecosystem of tools and websites to help you make tons of bells and, if you’re willing, plenty of ways to get the villager you want: Nookazon, Turnip Prophet, Turnip Calculator, Turnip Exchange, NookNet: Custom Design Portal, AC Patterns, Happy Island Designer, r/AdoptMyVillager (currently closed), & Nook Plaza.
posted by Fizz at 2:33 PM PST - 20 comments

The 100 Day Writing Challenge

The 100 Day Writing Challenge [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by curious nu at 1:53 PM PST - 6 comments

Duet for tuba and [ ]

A tuba in a stream (with a microphone in it).
A tuba by the falls (with a microphone in it) at dusk.
A tuba in the wind and rain (with a microphone in it). (with guest wind chimes)
A tuba by the hydroelectric dam (with a microphone in it).
posted by mykescipark at 1:33 PM PST - 14 comments

Here are all the TikTok dads I enjoyed today

Freelance writer Sarah Woolley is collecting adorable TikToks about dads: Twitter | Threadreader
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 1:16 PM PST - 3 comments

No meowm like an old meowm

“EEEAAAOOO” (from late 2019)
posted by Going To Maine at 12:58 PM PST - 21 comments

Rhapsody for your Blues

Clarinetist Eric Abramovitz hosts a surprising Zoom meeting. Featuring Eric on clarinet, bass clarinet, saxophone, flute and piano. Watch for the sax in bed, stick around for the klezmer.
posted by Cuke at 11:29 AM PST - 5 comments

Disney Acapella

Voctave is an acapella vocal group that was originally formed by members of the Voices of Liberty, who perform at Disney's EPCOT Center. Since 2015 they have covered a diverse range of musical styles, and although the group has gone through several iterations during the years, their sound has remained reliably spectacular. Their videos have over 100 million views on YouTube, and one of the best, if you ask me, is their Disney Fly Medly. [more inside]
posted by Quasimike at 11:28 AM PST - 8 comments

Ca, c'est le chose qui rend heureux.

Nicolas Supiot makes his own bread, grows his own wheat and teaches other people how and why to do the same.
posted by mhoye at 9:44 AM PST - 5 comments

an unveiling, a revealing

It has become of late en vogue to talk of how the COVID-19 pandemic is "exposing" [more] or "revealing" the already existing "fault lines" and "underlying conditions" in the United States, the United Kingdom, and more, around the world. But what if The Collapse of Civilization May Have Already Begun? [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:59 AM PST - 58 comments

My favorite is when they really get into it and pull out the "EEEWW"

Showcasing mostly Los Angeles based hip hop dancers, the 3 Dancers Choreograph To The Same Song videos shows off fun moves and even more fun reactions as the dancers react with disbelief and delight to footage of their fellow choreographers' chosen moves. Highlights: Mikey DellaVella, Teej Medallo, & Kat Dizon to “Usually” by DaniLeigh; Carlo Darang, Isidro Rafael, and Junna Yagi to “RNP” by YBN Cordae; and Danyel Moulton, Jonathan Sison, and Andie Zazueta to “Pony” by DaBaby. Content note: song lyrics contain profanity. [more inside]
posted by spamandkimchi at 8:37 AM PST - 8 comments

The Chairs of Blake’s 7

A compilation all the identifiable seating seen in Blake’s 7
"This blog post was originally written toward the end of the two year Watching Blake’s 7 marathon. Since then, 24 brand spanking new beacons of interior design have come to light. To say I’m happy is an understatement."
[more inside]
posted by AndrewStephens at 7:47 AM PST - 25 comments

Strange defeat.

"Every morning in the endless month of March, Americans woke up to find themselves citizens of a failed state." George Packer analyzes the Trump administration's many COVID-19 failures. (SLAtlantic) [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 7:36 AM PST - 833 comments

How I made a basketball hoop that always goes in

I've wondered if it is possible to make a basketball hoop where the ball always goes in. Imagine throwing a ball and if it hits the backboard it somehow gets directed into the hoop. Thanks to physics it isn't quite possible to make ALL possible shots go in though you can make a hoop where the ball goes in a lot more often. [SLYT, 22 minutes]
posted by Etrigan at 6:46 AM PST - 16 comments

CS Salad, P Pack, B Noodles, C Fajitas, R Beans (2017)

A physics professor on Twitter has discovered that Google Scholar has been displaying school lunch menus in its search results, with the menu items being parsed as author lists. Additional commentary here.
posted by Cash4Lead at 6:44 AM PST - 17 comments

"The clear trend across Europe is towards some form of normalisation"

Germany opens some shops as Merkel warns of second wave of coronavirus. Israelis demonstrate how to demonstrate during an infectious disease outbreak. How Ecuador descended into Covid-19 chaos. Seoul’s Radical Experiment in Digital Contact Tracing. A timeline of delays in U.S. coronavirus testing. Everything we know about coronavirus immunity and antibodies — and plenty we still don’t. A thread for daily links to news and analysis about the international coronavirus pandemic.
posted by mediareport at 5:06 AM PST - 624 comments

A Workbench Tour

Renowned woodworker, author, and Lost Art Press co-founder Christopher Schwarz is making the most of the downtime by walking people through his workshop, and telling the story of all his workbenches: The $175 workbench, the power tool workbench, English joiner's workbench, the cherry Roubo, the Holzapffel workbench, the vintage Ulmia, the Giulam workbench, the Moravian workbench, French oak Roubo, and the lightweight commercial workbench.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 4:55 AM PST - 19 comments

Did our employers just requisition our homes?

"Working from home" at present means something like this: employers have requisitioned the home as a condition of continuing to work, and they have taken away the office as part of what was previously offered to enable people to work... Acting as if home is a costless resource that is free for appropriation in an emergency, ignoring how home functions as a site of relatively invisible gendered relations of care and labour and imagining home as a largely frictionless site of interpersonal relations, come all too naturally, especially in a crisis." [more inside]
posted by trotzdem_kunst at 4:29 AM PST - 75 comments

silver linings

Isolation has made the world more accessible for chronically ill people like me by Chloe Sargent [SBS Australia] [more inside]
posted by freethefeet at 1:14 AM PST - 4 comments

Off their rockets

Thai Kutwa Rocket Festivals are merit-making ceremony traditionally practiced by ethnic Lao people throughout much of Isan and Laos, in numerous villages and municipalities near the beginning of the wet season. Celebrations typically include preliminary music and dance performances, competitive processions of floats, dancers and musicians, culminating on the third day in competitive firings of home-made rockets. [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 1:00 AM PST - 2 comments

April 20

What's that underneath your hair? Is there anybody living there?

1985 was a ridiculously strong year for music releases. We've already discussed Songs From The Big Chair and Dream Into Action so let's let's announce this a bit early so you can prepare: April 22, 1985, Prince And The Revolution release the second album billed under that name, Around The World In A Day. The album [YT playlist] would go double platinum and yield two top ten singles. Side A: Around The World In A Day, Paisley Park [video], Condition Of The Heart, Raspberry Beret [video], Tamborine [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 10:01 PM PST - 19 comments

Power rangers link

magic wand! make my monster grow!!
posted by theodolite at 8:16 PM PST - 5 comments

The funkiest alumni association in the world?

Tower of Power is a funk and soul band from Oakland, CA that's been around since 1968. The current version of the group still is led by founding members Emilio Castillo and Stephen "Doc" Kupka, but as you might expect for a band with a half-century of history, they've had quite a few members over the years. With such a large number of alumni, they recently did something that's hard to imagine too many other bands pulling off. Last week, they released a video featuring SIX of their former lead singers - Tom Bowes, Larry Braggs, Brent Carter, Ray Greene, Ellis Hall, and Hubert Tubbs - who collectively span more than 40 years of their history, collaborating on what they're calling a "socially distanced" version of TOP's signature song "What Is Hip?"
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 5:49 PM PST - 20 comments

A robin feathering his nest has very little time to rest

Please enjoy this 90 minutes of Slow TV. I love how the bird tries it out for fit with so many different poses and then makes adjustments accordingly. I'm watching a few minutes at a time to relax.
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 3:14 PM PST - 13 comments

Tracking urban killers

Cats are mysterious, dangerous and far more unpredictable than one might expect from an animal that is, theoretically, domesticated. What does an outdoor cat do all day? According to new research (NCSU), it could be taking a heavy toll on local wildlife. Another discovery from GPS (wild)life tracking (Wikipedia), this time with information from the US-focused Cat Tracker database, a project related to the wildlife tracking Move Bank (Where The Animals Go and a NatGeo Tracking Animal Migrations educational page; previously). [via NPR]
posted by filthy light thief at 2:33 PM PST - 54 comments

Man dances on metal pad; onlookers astonished

Seth Sanchez a.k.a. happyf333tz showcases the arcade dance game Pump It Up for Games Done Quick's COVID-19 relief event.
posted by Tau Wedel at 1:54 PM PST - 14 comments

To baldly show…

Star Trek Fact Check (previously) is a blog that revealed a lot of behind-the-camera knowledge about the original Star Trek series, but it's been trapped in a stasis field for a couple of years. Its creator announced today that he is collaborating with another Star Trek insider on a new project that sounds like it has the same ongoing mission: Fact Trek.
posted by adamrice at 1:26 PM PST - 7 comments

(Re)Make Part II Ultimate Classic Edition

What We Remake [Kotaku] “From fan-made revamps like Black Mesa to the highest of AAA productions like Final Fantasy VII Remake, enhanced, often reimagined takes on familiar games packed the early months of 2020. Remakes tug at nostalgia and deliver a comfort that players seek desperately in complicated times. But many of these games forge new paths, interrupting the comfortable ritual of returning to our youths in favor of messier, bolder ambitions. [...] Remakes and remasters are a type of ritual. Players return to these places, experiencing versions and variations of stories and events much in the way that the Bible contains various accounts of key moments penned by different authors. As in any anthropology, the question of what is truly “canon” lurks underneath it all. What is the definitive way to experience a game? What is the proper way to ritualistically retell the stories that gaming culture enshrines as the stories to tell?” [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 1:23 PM PST - 9 comments

“I thought maybe I could read it to you, a chapter a day.”

Radio host Phoebe Judge, best known for the Criminal and This Is Love podcasts, has a new project: Phoebe Reads A Mystery, in which she records herself reading a chapter of a classic mystery a day.
She has finished The Mysterious Affair At Styles and The Hound of The Baskervilles, and has just begun The Moonstone. [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine at 11:57 AM PST - 6 comments

"Shadow Puppets " doesn't even begin to describe them

Shadow puppet troupe/film production company/performance collective Manual Cinema has made two of their feature-length shows available to stream for free this week. [more inside]
posted by firechicago at 11:49 AM PST - 3 comments

wireframe before computers

Need a project for yourself or kids? Make a wireframe (remote control!) car out of scrap wire like this child in Malawi (people of a certain age may remember seeing this 1962 historical film clip on Sesame Street). Solomon from Uganda shows the build in detail.
posted by 445supermag at 10:55 AM PST - 3 comments

Black Gold Falling

On the 10th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, crude oil prices have dipped below $10/barrel, the lowest inflation adjusted price in memory. If coronavirus stimulus money will be wasted on fossil fuels maybe climate activists should just buy the wells. [more inside]
posted by gwint at 9:33 AM PST - 111 comments

Today Invisible Children gets most of its funding from the US government

“Operation Kony: A US Crusade in Africa” (42½min video, .mp4, magnet) A documentary explores the relationship between the Kony 2012 viral video, the organization Invisible Children which produced it, and U.S. military activity in Africa. [more inside]
posted by XMLicious at 9:19 AM PST - 4 comments

"Remember to feel your feet, everyone. Feel your feet."

Why Life During a Pandemic Feels So Surreal (Wired): The study of the surreal has mostly concerned Dali's paintings and Kafka’s writings. But there are psychological reasons why every day seems so otherworldly. Related: Time Is Meaningless Now (Vice) and The pandemic is giving people vivid, unusual dreams. Here’s why. (National Geographic)
posted by not_the_water at 8:59 AM PST - 30 comments


TLDR [Vimeo, 60 min.] is a portrait of a community of sex workers who live and work in Cape Town by South African artist Candice Breitz (previously), currently on display as part of a solo exhibition at the Kunstmuseum Bonn.
A musical of sorts, TLDR articulates the community’s ongoing struggle against violence and stigma and towards basic human rights. Parsing the relationship between whiteness, privilege and visibility, Breitz points a finger at herself to bluntly ask whether and how artists living privileged lives can succeed in amplifying calls for social justice.
[more inside]
posted by dmh at 7:48 AM PST - 2 comments

A Needed Blog In These Uncertain Times

It's the middle of a lockdown in the face of an epidemic, with professional sports closed down more or less across the board.

Which means that it's the perfect time to reopen the Unnamed Temporary Sports Blog (Dot Com), courtesy of CBD oil purveyor Sunsoil. (SLUTSB(DC)) [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 7:48 AM PST - 17 comments

A Stellar Mystery: How Could 100 Stars Just Vanish?

A comparison of old and new star catalogs shows that some objects seem to have gone missing.
posted by Etrigan at 6:41 AM PST - 60 comments

Off the Swedish grid

Tova and Mathias are living in a formerly abandoned fäbod (summer farm) in Talasbuan, Sweden. They started out with a couple of derelict log huts on a barren piece of land and little money. Their ongoing journey to make this into a livable, self sufficient home is documented in a series of vlogs. [more inside]
posted by Kosmob0t at 5:03 AM PST - 10 comments

"Life is short. Eat dessert first."

From Bon Appetit, pastry chefs attempt to make gourmet versions of: Cadbury Creme Eggs, Andes Mints, Girl Scout Cookies, Bagel Bites, Combos, Butterfingers, Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream, Jelly Belly Jelly Beans, Pizza Rolls, Milky Way Bars, Warheads, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Mentos, Takis, Ruffles, Sour Patch Kids, Hot Pockets, M&M's, Pocky, Pop-Tarts, Pop Rocks, Starburst, Twix, Doritos, Almond Joys, Peeps, Cheez-Its, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Ferrero Rocher, Pringles, Snickers, Instant Ramen, Sno Balls, Twizzlers, Oreos, Lucky Charms, Skittles, Kit Kats, Cheetos, Gushers, Twinkie. [more inside]
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 4:41 AM PST - 27 comments

April 19

Ping Pong Pandemic

How to convey the importance of social distancing in 30 seconds. The Ohio Department of Health nails it.
posted by storybored at 7:00 PM PST - 15 comments

Looking for a Craft Project in the Period of Plague

It may be too soon, but here is the cutest Plague Doctor Mask you will ever likely need.
posted by GenjiandProust at 1:57 PM PST - 14 comments

The storm chaser of Red Dead Redemption 2.

Over on Reddit, one player decided to take a closer look at Red Dead Redemption 2's weather system, and came back with some unexpected findings. After asking members of the reddeadmysteries subreddit for help in tracking down lightning strike spots, "MC_Ulfric" (also known as "InsertRandomNameHere") hopped on his horse to follow the storms himself - across the entire map. This wasn't just a simple sightseeing tour, either, as MC_Ulfric carefully watched where the largest lightning strikes hit the ground, and compiled the data from three storms into a map that shows Red Dead Redemption 2's storms are anything but static.” [via: Eurogamer][The Beautiful and Terrifying Weather Systems of Red Dead Redemption 2]
posted by Fizz at 12:54 PM PST - 17 comments

Low Budget Broadway

Actress Mary Neely decided to lip sync her favourite moments from Broadway musicals. The results are glorious. [more inside]
posted by GhostintheMachine at 9:40 AM PST - 6 comments

This is my best work yet...

Kristen Vogler plays a gentle prank on her parents while they are social distancing together. [Threadreader version][Facebook version - which has some longer captions]
posted by jacquilynne at 9:35 AM PST - 14 comments

Astroturfing in a time of Quarantine

Recent anti-quarantine protests are centrally coordinated Reddit user Dr_Midnight does a little digging and discovers that the anti-quarantine protests are a coordinated effort, with related websites all coming from a single source. There's an imperial ton of astroturfing going on, and it's quite visible in how those groups popped up literally overnight (hint-hint). The thing is that they targeted groups who were... how does one say... more receptive to the message who wouldn't be inclined to look any deeper into what they were joining.
posted by mecran01 at 7:33 AM PST - 148 comments

Marriage Wasn’t Built to Survive Quarantine

Stress isn’t a reflection of your relationship — your relationship is a reflection of unprecedented stress
posted by Etrigan at 6:35 AM PST - 59 comments

April 18

USAF diagrams that look like shitposts

The Parasite Fighters "The idea of using an aircraft to launch another aircraft has been around since at least the First World War. Such "composite" aircraft became nothing particularly unusual, with experimental aircraft like the Bell X-1 and drones being launched off carrier aircraft platforms on a routine basis. However, the notion of actually launching and then recovering an aircraft in mid-air -- for example, a heavy bomber carrying its own "parasite" fighters for escort -- was more ambitious, and in fact nobody's ever really made a go of it, if not for lack of effort." Including a mid-70's idea of using a heavily modified 747 for midflight launch and recovery of 17.5 foot wide and 10000 lb "micro-fighters." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:34 PM PST - 24 comments

One Gruff Harding, Two Gruff Harding

While Aotearoa New Zealand is in Level Four lockdown, one man's efforts are multiplying. Gruff Harding lives in Dunedin. First, he had the boys over. Routine is important. So is music. Bathrobes. Meditation. Games. Gardening. Scones. Like all good blokes, in the shed. Hanging around the street. Planning session. Cafe scenes. THERE CAN ONLY BE ONE. Formal Friday. Jousting on the lawn. Chores.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 10:27 PM PST - 9 comments

early "Stay Away"

Nirvana played ManRay in Cambridge 30 years ago tonight. Here’s video.
posted by jessamyn at 6:58 PM PST - 25 comments

Press Ⓐ to bless.

Pope Simulator [YouTube][Game Trailer] “The game begins on Conclave day, when the College of Cardinals elects a new Pope—that's you. You'll begin your reign by choosing a coat of arms, which will apparently impact the course of your papacy, and from there you'll set out to influence the course of the world through the application of "soft power": Organizing pilgrimages, advocating for world peace, moderating conflicts, and otherwise strategically wielding the influence of the Vatican.” [via: PC Gamer]
posted by Fizz at 12:17 PM PST - 38 comments

Take care

Virtual choir of 1120 people sang an old, optimistic Finnish rock hit Pidä huolta (Take care). The lyrics tell us to take care of ourselves and others, take care of the environment, take care of our elderly, take care our young people (by not sending them to fight wars). People who have been helped later become the helpers. The original by Pave's Mistakes (1981). [more inside]
posted by severiina at 11:08 AM PST - 7 comments

Joey Skaggs, and the art of the hoax

ANGLING FOR THE JOURNALIST: Concoct a well thought-out story. TV news producers, writers and reporters are greatly under the influence of Hollywood. Hollywood is equally influenced by what appears in the news. Our culture is reflected in both of these forms of media. So it’s important to combine the necessary theatrical elements to attract them. In essence, give them what they want! The Well Cooked Journalist: A traditional Joey Skaggs recipe (PDF). From "Cathouse for Dogs" and "The Fat Squad" to "Portofess," "Baba Wa Simba," "Metamorphosis: Roach Cure," and "Solomon Project," and more recently, Trump's Kool-Aid Marathon, artist, activist, educator, and notorious media prankster Joey Skaggs is a master in the Art of the Prank [trailer; full documentary; his own write-up on the docu].
posted by filthy light thief at 10:17 AM PST - 1 comment


While social distancing, Thao and the Get Down Stay Down rehearsed for 5 hours before filming a synchronized Zoom video for their new song, Phenom.
posted by dobbs at 9:33 AM PST - 16 comments

"You never underestimate Alireza – he’s devilishly tricky!"

In the Banter Blitz Cup - in which chess players have to talk the whole time about what they're thinking and feeling while playing rapid games - dominant world chess champion Magnus Carlsen has been defeated by 16-year-old Alireza Firouzja in a dramatic and entertaining final match.
posted by clawsoon at 9:13 AM PST - 25 comments

very primal, almost a kind of Luciferian sort of art

The New York Times called it “the most famous work of American art that almost nobody has ever seen in the flesh.” The artist who designed it said it was “the edge of the sun, a boiling curve, an explosion rising into a fiery prominence.” And the woman who financed it said it was “very primal, almost a kind of Luciferian sort of art. There’s something underworld about this particular spiral.” That piece of art is the “Spiral Jetty” — a swirling, 7,000-ton landmark off Rozel Point in northern Utah, built of salt crystal, mud and basalt rocks, that stretches more than 1,500 feet into the Great Salt Lake. And April 2020 marks its 50th anniversary. [more inside]
posted by inflatablekiwi at 8:14 AM PST - 18 comments

Unfortunately it can't turn your cat into a dog

Samsung redesigned its TV boxes to be easily converted into cat houses.
posted by Literaryhero at 3:43 AM PST - 31 comments

April 17

The Inventive Chef Who Kept His 700 Paintings Hidden

Ficre Ghebreyesus had no art gallery representation during his lifetime. Now his widow is working with Galerie Lelong in New York to show the work that summed up his search for identity.
posted by Ahmad Khani at 6:55 PM PST - 4 comments

A pat on the back

Simone Giertz built herself a proud parent.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 6:26 PM PST - 28 comments

So this is cute

Who says a dog can't fall in love? A cute slyt about a romantic weekend.
posted by Rufous-headed Towhee heehee at 3:06 PM PST - 6 comments

Due to COVID-19: Documenting the Signs of the Pandemic

Due to COVID-19: Documenting the Signs of the Pandemic [via mefi projects]
posted by aniola at 1:33 PM PST - 36 comments

Giant-Ass Saucer

"The other day, I was scrolling through Netflix, looking for a distraction from all the pain of my hair and all my terrible car opinions, seeking out some quality space-travel-focused sci-fi, because I love that crap. As I was scrolling, looking at the thumbnails of the various movies and shows and whatever, I realized something: when those thumbnails showed a picture of a spaceship, you could almost instantly know, generally, what that show or movie was about." This Chart Will Tell You What Kind Of Space-Based Sci-Fi You're About To Watch Just By Looking At The Main Ship (Jalopnik) (Direct link to chart)
posted by not_the_water at 12:33 PM PST - 74 comments

People of the Blue Green Waters

The Havasupai have inhabited the Grand Canyon for their entire history, surviving expropriation when the National Park was created. Continuing to survive means striking a balance with insta-hungry tourists, fending off uranium miners, and finding a way forward as the pandemic waits on the canyon rim. [more inside]
posted by SandCounty at 11:36 AM PST - 3 comments

"The most jazzy I've heard electronic music get."

Have you finally reached that age category, where bodily problems start showing up and you can not blindly trust all of your farts anymore? There is no reason to worry, just embrace the ageing. Anyway it's been a while since anyone has heard of me, I have been quietly making new music and over time I ended up with this almost entirely unquantized album which may be the most pretty sounding thing I've done to date. I'm not expecting anyone to read this by the way but it'd be unkind to leave this text box empty. It makes it feel unfinished if I did. This album is best enjoyed in your private aura like playing from your headphones while you're in public or commuting or in a field for no reason other than to listen to this album. Don't let anyone play this in the club, it won't work, none of the tracks sync well just to give djs a hard time. Save the environment, start with yourself. Wonky Vision by Fah, on Bandcamp. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:03 AM PST - 16 comments

Milwaukee Journalist Eugene Kane dies at 63

"He Said the Things that Needed to be Said" Eugene Kane, famed Milwaukee journalist, has died at age 63. Eugene Kane wrote for many Milwaukee publications, including the Milwaukee Journal (later the Journal-Sentinel). A quote from Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett: “Eugene was an incredibly gifted writer, and more importantly than that, he was an incredibly passionate person about equity and justice in our society, and specifically in our city." [more inside]
posted by Slinga at 9:51 AM PST - 8 comments

“Help us map one of the most beautiful forms of life we know of.”

NeMO-Net: Help NASA Save the World's Coral By Playing a Video Game “In NeMO-NET, players use their iPhone, iPad, or computer to virtually travel into the ocean’s depths, identifying and classifying all the corals they encounter. The images are taken from real life ocean expeditions, and playing the game will help scientists create a better map of the world’s coral that can help with conservation efforts before reefs get wiped out. For the past several years, scientists from NASA’s Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley have observed the world’s oceans, using new tools that correct for the optical distortion of the water to display a clearer, more detailed look below the ocean’s surface. By mounting the new instruments on drones and aircrafts, the scientists have obtained 3D images of corals, algae, and seagrass on the ocean floor over the course of expeditions to Puerto Rico, Guam, and American Samoa. But now, the scientists have to sort through all that data, which is where the game comes in.” [via: Gizmodo][YouTube][Game Trailer]
posted by Fizz at 9:38 AM PST - 10 comments

Bored? Push the Button!

It's the Big Fun Button, courtesy of Colorado Public Radio.
posted by asperity at 8:13 AM PST - 30 comments

"So what can you do? Well, probably not very much."

Using a 1930 Teletype as a Linux Terminal
posted by cortex at 7:37 AM PST - 36 comments

Office Noise Generator

Close your eyes and imagine you're in the office. Beautiful, right?
posted by Cardinal Fang at 6:13 AM PST - 32 comments

Singapore's health system and migrant workers explained

The sharp increase in covid 19 cases in Singapore mainly among migrant workers in crammed dormitories is challenging the early gleaming image of the highly efficient healthcare system. New Naratif explains the reality of migrant workers in Singapore, widespread myths and facts about migrant workers, and the limits of a technocratic approach to healthcare (an indepth analysis of the system written just before the pandemic).
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 5:11 AM PST - 12 comments

Fiona Apple - Fetch the Bolt Cutters

Fiona Apple’s fifth record is unbound , a wildstyle symphony of the everyday, an unyielding masterpiece. No music has ever sounded quite like it. Available now (only on digital platforms until the shutdown ends). Pitchfork have awarded the album their first 10/10 rating since Kanye West's 'My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy' back in 2010. “Blast the music! Bang it! Bite it! Bruise it!” [more inside]
posted by Lanark at 2:12 AM PST - 69 comments

Basically Interdimensional Radio

Channel 101 (previously, Twitter, see also Channel 101 NY), the beloved older-than-Youtube mini-TV-show-making contest that launched the careers of Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon, sees only one way to keep relevant in this time of suckage: RADIO 101 (name mine because they haven't thought of one yet), a new fortnightly collaborative podcast open to everyone with a microphone and audio-editing programs like the free ones linked from here. Rules for entry after the jump. [more inside]
posted by BiggerJ at 1:20 AM PST - 3 comments

April 16

"First Look"

Filmed in isolation during Covid-19
posted by stray at 9:47 PM PST - 6 comments

If by chance that special place... leads you to a lonely place...

1985 was a ridiculously strong year for music releases, and we're far behind with celebrating releases. On Feb 14, 1985, only three weeks after No Jacket Required, The world was introduced to 21-year-old Whitney Houston on her debut album Whitney Houston. The massive global success of the album and her meteoritic rise to international stardom is truly because, at its core, this album [YT playlist] is about Whitney singing. And man, could she ever sing. Side A: You Give Good Love [video], Thinking About You, Someone For Me [video], Saving All My Love For You [video], Nobody Loves me Like You Do (w/ Jermaine Jackson) [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 7:45 PM PST - 15 comments

Look for the helpers

33 Moments Where Friends, Family, And Total Strangers Had Each Other's Backs In This Pandemic (Buzzfeed listicle by Stephen LaConte)
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 4:02 PM PST - 25 comments

Tim's Twitter Listening Party

Tim Burgess from UK band The Charlatans invites you to listen along on Twitter to some classic albums. [more inside]
posted by plasticpalacealice at 3:18 PM PST - 16 comments

Black in Rembrandt's Time

Dutch Golden Age Art Wasn’t All About White People. Here’s the Proof (NYTimes) On March 6, the Rembrandt House museum in Amsterdam opened an exhibition titled ‘Black in Rembrandt’s time’ The museum, like other museums around the world soon closed. But Mark Ponte walks us through a history of the black community in Amsterdam.(Twitter) And the museum has now put together a 12-minute documentary walking you through the exhibition (Dutch with English subtitles)
posted by vacapinta at 1:02 PM PST - 4 comments

COVID-19 vaccine lead Kizzmekia Corbett - Not your average scientist

After years studying coronaviruses and dengue fever, Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett is leading the research team that launched the earliest clinical trials toward a COVID-19 vaccine. Janell Ross reports on Dr. Corbett for NBC News. [more inside]
posted by kristi at 11:50 AM PST - 12 comments

"Did someone say my name?" "Who are you?"

Brian Dennehy, known for roles in First Blood, Cocoon, and Silverado, has died of natural causes at age 81.
posted by hanov3r at 11:41 AM PST - 66 comments

"But we've lacked the political will to do so."

A research paper published this week in Nature has estimated the total cost of failing to meet the Paris Agreement of keeping global warming to under 2 degrees Celsius: $150 trillion to as much as $792 trillion by the end of the century. [more inside]
posted by Ouverture at 10:52 AM PST - 10 comments

Disaster Capitalism: Pandemic Edition

Corporations Are Not Letting This Crisis Go to Waste As the pandemic wreaks chaos, corporations and the GOP are following the shock doctrine playbook. [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu at 10:36 AM PST - 61 comments

Burning Man, 25 years ago, and into the multiverse for 2020

In 1995 some friends invited me to Burning Man. I thought it was an overnight rave, so I grabbed a backpack with a change of clothing and my Super8 camera. It wasn't until we entered Nevada that I realized I was going to a week-long festival in the desert. With no food or shelter, and minimal supplies, I lived off the kindness of friends and strangers. [...] The film [...] is unedited—straight from the camera. I only brought two 3.5 minute rolls of film with me (one color and the other black and white), so I preserved film by capturing scenes with short recording—like moving photos. I cut out some under-exposed night footage, but the rest is how I shot it. The music is from a favorite 1995 chillout album by Subsurfing called Frozen Ants. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:50 AM PST - 27 comments

Pass the Pepper

I know we've all seen enough Rube Goldberg machines to last a lifetime, but...
posted by dobbs at 9:44 AM PST - 12 comments

Pandemic in Azeroth

World Of Warcraft Fan Server Unleashes Days-Long Virtual Plague To Teach Covid-19 Prevention [Kotaku] “Over the weekend, Elysium—an unofficial, fan-run project that lets players relive early versions of WoW sans Blizzard’s oversight or subscription requirement—ran an event called “Pandemic In Azeroth.” The idea was ambitious, but risky: Without warning, Elysium’s admins dropped a virus into the game world that, within 15 hours, infected 2,276 players. Within 24 hours, that number jumped all the way up to 7,000. At its peak, the virtual illness impacted 88 percent of active players. After the virus had time to spread organically, the admins let everybody know what was going on: A virus had been placed on an in-game object. A player, dubbed “patient zero,” had touched that object and then interacted with other players and NPCs, any of whom had a chance of contracting the virus. It could spread to objects as well. If players who came into contact with germ-coated objects or characters failed to rush off to a city and wash their hands using a special “hand soap” item, their character would contract an illness that led to a 5 percent stat reduction and 10 percent movement speed debuff. Oh, and of course, they’d become a danger to other players, too.”
posted by Fizz at 8:50 AM PST - 19 comments

WWE Essential, Employees Contractors Not So Much

Reports surfaced this week of WWE being labelled an "essential business" by the state of Florida, allowing them to continue airing live wrestling shows in an empty studio. When asked about the decision, Governor DeSantis delivered a word salad for the ages, citing Disney gardening staff, content, Nascar, Woods and Mickelson doing "the golf," and Tom Brady being in Tampa Bay before ending his press conference. Then, a couple days later after getting the go ahead to continue, billion dollar company WWE began releasing wrestlers, as well as furloughing and laying off producers, and other employees. Many people have been wondering what the hell is going on. [more inside]
posted by Ghidorah at 7:47 AM PST - 18 comments

portrait of the Artist as a young Korean-American

"What if the finest, funniest, craziest, sanest, most cheerfully depressing Korean-American novel was also one of the first? To a modern reader, the most dated thing about Younghill Kang’s East Goes West, published by Scribner’s in 1937, is its tired title. Practically everything else about this brash modernist comic novel still feels electric... Its value is in the heady mix of high and low, the antic yet clear-eyed take on race relations, the parade of tragic and comic bit players, and above all, the unleashed chattering of Chungpa’s distinctive voice. Underlying the richness and humor, there’s a deep pessimism about making it in America, for anyone not white and male." Ed Park writes for the New York Review of Books about the 1937 comic novel.
posted by ChuraChura at 7:03 AM PST - 2 comments

The Writer of "Demolition Man" on the Predictive Power of His 1993 Movie

Demolition Man may have been intended as a goof about restrictions on behavior and language, but it plays differently from a sheltering-in-place 2020 perspective.... It’s a portrayal of how normalcy can change, and of people who are uptight because upheaval is still a close enough memory that they have trouble bringing themselves to relax, no matter what the oblivious ’90s action hero in their midst might urge. And so, in the light of Demolition Man’s accidental coronavirus relevance, Vulture spoke to the movie’s writer, Daniel Waters — also of Heathers, Hudson Hawk, and Batman Returns fame — about being back in the news.
posted by Etrigan at 6:54 AM PST - 19 comments

April 15

He really hates these replicants!

I spent twenty minutes watching this bonkers metatextual reinterpretation of Blade Runner, "The Lost Cut" so now you have to too.
posted by cortex at 7:03 PM PST - 52 comments

"Ten Things I’m Going to Make When This Is Over"

Four years after writing "So Much Cooking" (previously), a sci-fi short story in the form of a recipe blog updated during a fictional pandemic, Naomi Kritzer reflects on its eerie similarity to the real one. [more inside]
posted by pmdboi at 5:41 PM PST - 33 comments

“[They] sound almost… like a colloquial anatomical vulgarity”

Ada Powers: I get it: you’re on lockdown. You're trying to do a lot with a little. It's hard to find joy in the midst of fear, depression, and austerity. That's why it's time to learn about totwaffles. (thread)
posted by Going To Maine at 5:30 PM PST - 28 comments

The Devastating Decline of a Brilliant Young Coder

"It is the most common form of dementia. Still, as a man in his thirties, Lee was unusually young to be afflicted." Lee Holloway cofounded Cloudflare but is now almost completely lost to frontotemporal dementia. Single-link Wired feature by Sandra Upson.
posted by secretseasons at 3:07 PM PST - 24 comments

There's no party like a ... eh... Garden Party...

Garden Party, a lush animated short.
Featuring the bullfrogs & other creatures from Maestro.
Illogic & Bloom Pictures: last year on MF
posted by growabrain at 12:41 PM PST - 7 comments

The gulf between the anxiety of the world and the anxiety of the self…

Sequestered with my family, surrounded by disease, embedded, clearly and undeniably, in History—in the shared consequences of politics, pathology, and plain old fate—I wish to see and feel my anxiety not as my own, not at all as my own, but as ours. The city’s. The country’s. The world’s. The time’s. One unmistakable sign that I want this is that now when I write about my own anxiety, I do feel shame. I feel shame like a warning, like a threat: I, I, I, I, I, I: the eternal song of anxiety. (n+1) [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 12:03 PM PST - 9 comments

The Grief of Isis

A beautifully-illustrated contemporary retelling of the myth of Osiris. by European musician, artist, and fakir Makmed the Miller, who states that they specialize in the bed of nails. This secondary link contains several embedded musical performances. Makmed the Miller on Soundcloud.
posted by mwhybark at 11:15 AM PST - 2 comments

More of making the most from a limited food supply

No flour, eggs or butter? No problem! 23 cake recipes for when you're missing an ingredient (The Guardian). See also: The Food Expiration Dates You Should Actually Follow from the New York Times, who also has a virtual cookbook of recipes and tips for quarantine cooking. One final tip: if your supplies of bubbly drinks are limited, perhaps don't experiment with bottle sabring or chopping, as seen in this episode of Quarantine Quitchen with the Browns (no injuries, lots of laughing).
posted by filthy light thief at 9:16 AM PST - 32 comments

A Four-Colour Psychochronography

The Last War In Albion is a blog/book/epic by Elizabeth Sandifer that chronicles ... well. I'll just: This Is Not A Dream
The Last War in Albion is a history of British comics. More specifically, it is a history of the magical war between Grant Morrison and Alan Moore, a war that is on the one hand entirely of its own invention and on the other a war fought in the realm of the fictional, rendering its actual existence almost but not entirely irrelevant. The war in question is not the scant material residue of their verbal feud in various interviews over the years. This exists and will be picked over, but it is not the meat of the discussion. Rather it is a more fundamental issue: how is it that two comics writers of nearly the same generation, with such a clear overlap in interests, who grew up a mere three-hundred-and-forty miles apart - no greater than the distance from New York to DC - a mere seven years in age difference (no larger than the age difference between J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis) are not friends and have not a hint of warmth in their relationship? This is almost as improbable as Morrissey and Robert Smith hating each other’s guts.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:59 AM PST - 36 comments

women are presented as gateways, or opportunities for transformation

A Feminist Critique of Murkami Novels, with Murakami Himself: Mieko Kawakami interviews Haruki Murakami. Kawakami asks Murakami why his female characters play the roles they do, and behave like they do, and Murakami responds.
posted by minsies at 7:30 AM PST - 14 comments

"I knew these lines backwards last night!"

"That's the way you're sayin' them now." The Warner Bros annual blooper reels, 1935 to 1949. SLYoutube playlist.
posted by MartinWisse at 7:04 AM PST - 6 comments

April 14


A recent thing went around twitter that was six blank boxes and was available for artists to post that said "give me six characters to draw as fan art". Responses were huge and artists chose and created a vast twitter gallery of six characters from anything you can imagine in their style. The library is vast and entertaining (and to a tiny extent NSFW). Enjoy!
posted by hippybear at 10:41 PM PST - 16 comments

Labour officials opposed to Corbyn worked to lose the 2017 election

Labour party officials opposed to Jeremy Corbyn worked to lose the 2017 general election in the hope that a bad result would trigger a leadership contest to oust him, a dossier drawn up by the party suggests. The report says staffers trawled social media to find reasons to exclude voters from the contest, work which was referred to on numerous occasions by staff as variations of “trot busting”, “bashing trots” and “trot spotting”. One staffer described themselves as being “trot smasher in chief”, while another said during the 2015 leadership election that the “priority right now is trot hunting”. In 2015 two officials discussed the fact that they were “playing trot or not” while “the real work is piling up”. A senior official described this work as “saving the Labour party”. [more inside]
posted by 445supermag at 9:47 PM PST - 88 comments

it's just wood, and paint, and damage

Julian Baumgartner of Baumgartner Fine Art Restoration's newest video is a departure from his usual fare, featuring a sculpture by Ida Kohlmeyer. 23 minutes of relaxing zen stuff. [more inside]
posted by lazaruslong at 8:40 PM PST - 9 comments

The True Story of “The Lost Boys”’ Sax Man

People say one night can change the course of your life. What they don’t say is sometimes it can take several decades to realize it.
posted by Etrigan at 4:22 PM PST - 43 comments

Of rats and children

A Plague Tale: Innocence [YouTube][Game Trailer] “A Plague Tale: Innocence opens on a scene of idyllic playfulness: a teenage girl, Amicia, walking her dog through an autumnal forest in 12th-century France, bumping apples from tall trees using pebbles hurled from a homemade slingshot. If this is the “innocence” of the game’s title, it plays but a fleeting cameo role in the drama. Before the day is out, Amicia’s dog is dead – ripped apart by a thrashing mass of rabid vermin – along with her former life of privilege as a French noble, ripped apart by soldiers of the inquisition, thugs acting on behalf of an equally corrupt church. Amicia and her younger brother Hugo, a boy who suffers from a blood disease and has spent his days in jaundiced confinement, escape the family estate and begin to pick their way through a countryside turned hostile. This is, then, a story of innocence versus experience, of children versus the ruined world of adults, with all its plagues, both physical and ideological.” [via: The Guardian] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 3:40 PM PST - 15 comments

First lines of emails I’ve received while quarantining

A poem, by Jessica Salfia [more inside]
posted by Gorgik at 2:21 PM PST - 19 comments

"...and on the wings of a dream, so far beyond reality..."

Item 1: Through the Fire and Flames, a song by DragonForce. Item 2: Safety Dance, a song by Men Without Hats. Item 3: Through the Safety and the Dance, a mashup by Crap Mashups.
posted by Tau Wedel at 11:29 AM PST - 10 comments

Pantry Pasta

Bon Appétit features 13 professional chefs cooking Quarantine Pasta at home with the most basic ingredients they have on hand. 29 min. SLYT
posted by growabrain at 11:17 AM PST - 69 comments

Boldly Going Where One Woman Has Never Gone Before

Rachel Lackey, voice actress and therapist has a husband, Chris, who does a podcast (The HP Lovecraft Literary Podcast). Chris loves Star Trek, and wants to share it with Rachel, who doesn't really like science fiction (although she likes musicals). Chris does what any normal guy podcaster would do, and asks Rachel to do a podcast with him where she will watch Star Trek with fresh eyes and talk about her reactions. Thus, Rachel Watches Star Trek boldly set forth. [more inside]
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:27 AM PST - 32 comments

the world has exploded! we are all new creatures now.

@desertislandcomics: Rescue Party is a series of nine-panel comics solicited by Desert Island on the theme of ideal futures during the coronavirus crisis. We will continue to post one per day in the order we receive them! [more inside]
posted by 1970s Antihero at 9:06 AM PST - 2 comments

To Read Today; Have Read Already Today?

A Janus word is a word with two meanings that seem to contradict each other, and here's a list of some with a wee bit of explanation. I was trying to figure out how English came to use the words propeller, impeller, and expeller to describe three different motions of a fan or rotor, and I found this instead. [more inside]
posted by winesong at 9:01 AM PST - 75 comments

"If anybody wants to keep creating, they have to be about change."

Miles Davis - The Birth Of Cool [trailer] documents the life of the horn player, bandleader, and innovator. "Elegant, intellectual, vain. Callous, conflicted, controversial. Magnificent, mercurial. Genius. The very embodiment of cool. The man with a sound so beautiful it could break your heart. [...] Featuring never-before-seen archival footage, studio outtakes and rare photos, this film tells the story of a truly singular talent and unpacks the music and the myth of the man behind the horn." [official site] It also includes new interviews, and Davis’ own words, as voiced by actor Carl Lumbly (Alias, This Is Us). Streaming now on Netflix, BBC iPlayer (UK) for the next 5 months, and on PBS for Passport members. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:32 AM PST - 6 comments

The New York Times Reports on Joe Biden

Examining Tara Reade’s Sexual Assault Allegation Against Joe Biden After being discussed by a number of media outlets for months, The New York Times has reported on the sexual assault allegation by the presumptive Democratic Nominee for President, Joe Biden. [more inside]
posted by MisantropicPainforest at 4:52 AM PST - 762 comments

April 13

Hello, Lost Generation (and Generation C).

"Millennials now are facing the second once-in-a-lifetime downturn of their short careers. The first one put them on a worse lifetime-earnings trajectory and blocked them out of the asset market. The second is sapping their paychecks just as they enter their peak-earnings years, with 20 million kids relying on them, too. There’s no good news in a recession, and no good news in a pandemic. For Millennials, it feels like there is never any good news at all." [more inside]
posted by Ouverture at 2:46 PM PST - 81 comments

△ O X ▢

A First Look At The PlayStation 5 DualSense Controller [Game Informer]Sony has introduced its PlayStation 5 DualSense wireless controller. It's an evolution on the classic PlayStation controller form we've seen over previous generations, with some new features. The controller is slightly lighter, and Hideaki Nishino, Sony senior vice president, platform planning and management, says the company wanted to "maintain a strong battery life" for the rechargeable controller. "Based on our discussions with developers," Nishino said, "we concluded that the sense of touch within gameplay, much like audio, hasn’t been a big focus for many games." Accordingly, the controller uses haptic feedback and has trigger tension. Overall, the angle of the hand triggers and the grip of the controller is different from previous ones. Nishino says the company tested the controller's ergonomics with players of varying hand sizes, and wanted it to "feel smaller than it really looks."” [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 2:13 PM PST - 43 comments


A First Look at Timothée Chalamet in Dune: Vanity Fair kicks off their preview of Denis Villeneuve’s adaptation of the epic sci-fi novel (set to open on December 18). "Tomorrow, Vanity Fair will provide an even more expansive exploration of Villeneuve’s quest to bring Dune to the screen, but today we begin with the central hero: Paul Atreides, a child of privilege raised by a powerful family, but not one strong enough to protect him from the dangers that await." Also starring Josh Brolin (Gurney Halleck), Oscar Isaac (Duke Leto), Rebecca Ferguson (Lady Jessica Atreides) and Javier Bardem (Stilgar). [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 1:08 PM PST - 128 comments

An Aurora, Sharpened in the Key of C

Years in the making, a new version of the Aurora 4X strategy game, previously, has just been released. It was ported to a new programming language, but that's probably the least significant news. [more inside]
posted by Alensin at 11:43 AM PST - 11 comments


Supercut from one of the most infamous songs in all of Andrew Lloyd Webberdom - Gethsemene, from #JCS, Jesus Christ Superstar. Why? because he is risen (in that he can hit that high note [some of the time]).
posted by Pyrogenesis at 11:02 AM PST - 50 comments

Sense and Census-ability

Awareness is (slowly) increasing that the Census in the US is underway, and the Bureau of the Census has extended deadlines and made other operational adjustments, with calls for pushing back the deadlines further. Interactive data is available for each US state and county (web page for response rates, Tableau interactive dashboard) so you can see how well your local area is doing . Current response rates show less than 50% have completed. As a reminder the results of this once-a-decade count determine the number of seats each state has in the House of Representatives. They are also used to draw congressional and state legislative districts. [more inside]
posted by inflatablekiwi at 9:39 AM PST - 60 comments

Ultimate Quarantine House Selection!

Ultimate Quarantine House Selection! [via mefi projects]. A little toy that generates fresh instances of the "Pick Your Quarantine House" meme/game. Potential roommates are drawn from a pool of 3000+ celebrities and historical figures.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 8:53 AM PST - 26 comments

Now and then there's a fool such as I...

Takeshi Terauchi (寺内タケシ) is a Japanese instrumental rock guitarist. He started his career playing rhythm guitar for the Country and Western act "Jimmie Tokita and The Mountain Playboys".
Here he sings Fool such as I.
Here they sing Blue moon of Kentucky
Tennessee Waltz
Tumbling tumbleweeds
Amazing Grace
- More songs
Credit [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 2:43 AM PST - 16 comments

April 12

Why do we listen to new music?

Listening to new music is hard. Not hard compared to going to space or war, but hard compared to listening to music we already know. [...] Eventually, we bow our heads and cross a threshold where most music becomes something to remember rather than something to experience. And now, on top of everything else, here we all are, crawling through this tar pit of panic and dread, trying to heft some new music through historic gravity into our lives. It feels like lifting a couch. Why Do We Even Listen to New Music? -- Our brains reward us for seeking out what we already know. So why should we reach to listen to something we don’t? (Pitchfork long read) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 11:06 PM PST - 83 comments

The Northern California Folk-Rock Festival, May 15, 1968

WHAT'LL YOU BOYS HAVE? SHE ASKED. RAW MEAT, THEY ANSWERED. A remarkable review of a concert featuring The Youngbloods, Crome Syrcus, Steve Miller Band, The Grateful Dead, Big Brother and the Holding Company, and the Jefferson Airplane. Written by a guy named Sandy Darlington, author of "Buzz River Letters." It appeared in the San Francisco Express Times, an underground paper formed by Berkeley Free Speech vet Marvin Garson with help from Todd Gitlin, Greil Marcus, Paul Williams, chef Alice Waters, and Marjorie Heins. [more inside]
posted by msalt at 11:06 PM PST - 11 comments

Gavin Newsom Declares California a ‘Nation-State’

What is the difference, conceptually, between a state deploying its power to protect its population’s health and a state using it to protect its population’s democratic rights? This is not the first time Gavin Newsom has referred to California as a "nation-state". [more inside]
posted by toastyk at 10:41 PM PST - 109 comments

Reasons to Be Cheerful, Part 3

Reasons to Be Cheerful, Part 3 is a song by Ian Dury and the Blockheads, released in the summer of 1979. It did pretty good, hitting the 3rd spot on the UK charts. It's considered to be a list song. [more inside]
posted by ashbury at 9:20 PM PST - 18 comments

Remains of dinosaurs and ancient forest discovered in Antarctica

Fossilised remains of 90-million-year-old rainforest discovered under Antarctic ice. Interesting article about the discovery of a forest only 500 miles from the South Pole. How did a forest exist in a continent that is dark 6 months of the year ? Story contains interesting map of the original Antarctic supercontinent when it was attached to India and Australia. [more inside]
posted by Narrative_Historian at 7:27 PM PST - 12 comments

Punch felt round the world

Who said you can't fight while in isolation? [slyt]
posted by ladyriffraff at 4:33 PM PST - 9 comments

How Anthony Fauci became America's doctor

An infectious-disease expert’s long crusade against some of humanity’s most virulent threats. (SL The New Yorker) Since his days of advising Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush, Fauci has maintained a simple credo: “You stay completely apolitical and non-ideological, and you stick to what it is that you do. I’m a scientist and I’m a physician. And that’s it.”
posted by bluesky43 at 4:25 PM PST - 52 comments

It really don't matter much where you run, 'cause home is in your heart.

1985 was a ridiculously strong year for music releases, and we're far behind with celebrating releases. Jan 25th 35 years ago was the release of Phil Collins' third solo album No Jacket Required. It's hard to provide commentary on an album this mammoth. So many hits, so many units sold, so many awards... Truly a legendary album [full album, 46m]. Side A: Sussudio [video], Only You Know And I Know, Long Long Way To Go, I Don't Wanna Know, One More Night [video] [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 1:15 PM PST - 46 comments

Slow TV Swedish Style

Last year Sveriges Television, the national broadcasting service supported by taxpayers, introduced The big moose migration (Den stora älgvandringen), a multi-day, 24-hour broadcast of a beautiful landscape along with any animals that pass by its cameras. Slow TV day 5 of the second broadcast begins tomorrow. Feel free to enjoy the first four days starting now. “For several thousand years the moose have walked the same path to get to the rich pastures of summer. Follow the walk by from Kullburg in the north of Sweden,” encourages SVT.
posted by Bella Donna at 11:35 AM PST - 8 comments

Watch it and weep (from the sheer beauty)

In case you missed it earlier, Andrea Bocelli concert On Easter Sunday (April 12, 2020), by invitation of the City and of the Duomo cathedral of Milan, Italian global music icon Andrea Bocelli gave a solo performance representing a message of love, healing and hope to Italy and the world. [more inside]
posted by cyndigo at 11:17 AM PST - 7 comments

Dare to ask...

Which Is The Best Thing?
posted by Ten Cold Hot Dogs at 9:33 AM PST - 87 comments

Don't want no Almond Joy 🍫🐰

“This is a song for those of you in the audience who have trouble getting up on Sunday morning and going to church.” [YouTube]
posted by Fizz at 9:21 AM PST - 10 comments

The mystery of faith

Anybody want to hear about how a Catholic church had me, a nice Jewish kid, re-write their Passion Week play and I inadvertently got the parish hooked on 3rd century Gnostic heresies?
Afikomen Valentín @ai_valentin from Twitter
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:31 AM PST - 26 comments

And Now, A Walk in the Black Forest

Tim Brooke-Taylor , one third of the legendary comedy trio The Goodies, has died of Covid-19. [more inside]
posted by rory at 8:29 AM PST - 58 comments

Mathematician John Horton Conway died yesterday of COVID-19.

John Horton Conway, Princeton Mathematician, best know for his Game of Life, has died at 82 from COVID-19. (previously)
posted by Obscure Reference at 7:41 AM PST - 73 comments

"A truly remarkable, if slightly clunky, tool"

The USDA's CropScape shows exactly which crops are being grown anywhere in the US. Because in these very weird and awful times, when nobody can leave their own property, it can be nice to look at some maps.
posted by gueneverey at 7:21 AM PST - 5 comments

A Lot of the Things We Mention Are Not, in Fact, Miracles

Ten Years of ‘Miracles’ [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 4:41 AM PST - 29 comments

April 11

Poems on the London Underground, February 2020

Honesty by Kit Wright
The Gulls by Jacob Polley
Prayer for My Father as a Child by Miriam Nash
Sonnet 98 (‘From you I have been absent in the spring’) by Shakespeare; and read by Tom Hiddleston
Fear by Ciaran Carson
Perseverance by Marin Sorescu, translated by D.J. Enright [more inside]
posted by paduasoy at 10:59 PM PST - 6 comments

No picnic on Mount Kenya

It was 1942, and Felice Benuzzi was bored out of his mind. A year in a POW camp in British Kenya had drained the Italian civil servant and amateur mountaineer’s sense of purpose. So, he hatched a plan that would become one of the purest adventure tales in history: break out of camp, climb Mt Kenya (Wikipedia), and break back in again. (BBC Travel) But first, he had to make the climbing equipment and plan the path (Internet Archive)* for himself and two other madmen, Giuàn Balletto and Enzo Barsotti. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:20 PM PST - 11 comments

Eating the alkali metals

Running low on sodium chloride and thinking about breaking into your stocks of other alkali metal salts? Watch Tom and his adventurous friends taste the alkali metals, putting to the test whether sodium is in fact “the best tasting of the alkali metals,” [*] and which of them are best avoided for culinary use. [more inside]
posted by mubba at 5:11 PM PST - 49 comments

The Narrow World

The Narrow World
posted by y2karl at 4:28 PM PST - 5 comments

Churchill's Cigar

Solving Churchill's Cigar and Whisky Bottle Puzzle.
From the German Youtube channel Mr. Puzzle
posted by growabrain at 3:07 PM PST - 12 comments

Ever upwards, ever upwards

Excelsior! The governor's generosity, and leadership, extend into the bedroom. NSFW (is that even a thing now?)
posted by HotToddy at 10:55 AM PST - 7 comments

RIP Goose

It Has Been Twenty(-One) Years Since Fabio Killed A Goose With His Face On A Roller Coaster A short piece from a simpler time (last year).
posted by aka burlap at 10:45 AM PST - 53 comments

Rams - a documentary

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit (Helvetica) is streaming his documentaries free worldwide during the global COVID-19 crisis. Each Tuesday a different film is posted. This week's is Rams, on the life and philosophy of Dieter Rams. Soundtrack by Brian Eno. Via Kottke. [more inside]
posted by carter at 10:37 AM PST - 6 comments

Covid-19: The Great Pause

It’s the greatest gift ever unwrapped. Not the deaths, not the virus, but the Great Pause. It is, in a word, profound. Please don’t recoil from the bright light beaming through the window. I know it hurts your eyes. It hurts mine, too. But the curtain is wide open. What the crisis has given us is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see ourselves and our country in the plainest of views. " It is also ... "..a perfect time for Best Buy and J. Crew and Gwyneth Paltrow to help me feel normal again... Prepare for the Ultimate Gaslighting. Here. The Great American Return to Normal is coming!
posted by IndelibleUnderpants at 10:17 AM PST - 84 comments

“What a terrible image.”

Speaking Moistly 🎶 On Tuesday, Justin Trudeau gave a press conference explaining how wearing masks can prevent “breathing or speaking moistly.” On Wednesday, the Prime Minister himself went viral. The autotuned remix is the quick work of Edmonton musician Brock Tyler. [more inside]
posted by oulipian at 10:03 AM PST - 21 comments

You Awake to Find Yourself in a Dark Twitch Stream

Nearly half way through a 48 hour marathon twitch stream, the madman behind 2012 youtube sensation The Dark Room and subsequent comedy text adventure show is raising money for the NHS and Mind by being unreasonably energetic and killing hapless adventurers live until 7pm BST Sunday. Join in via chat and see if you can win a Flamboyant Potato*. [more inside]
posted by lucidium at 10:00 AM PST - 2 comments

Keep on Truckin'

American Truck Simulator is the perfect way to hit the great, virtual outdoors [Vox] “The 2016 release on PC and Mac — which is continuously expanded by developer SCS Software — is exactly what it sounds like: a game where you are a truck driver, completing long hauls and taking cargo from city to city. But what it really excels at is capturing the feeling of driving through the great, open expanses of the country, radio blasting some of your favorite tunes (you can load your favorite songs right into the game). You have places to be, but for now, you’re just killing time. It’s an extraordinarily relaxing experience, and by the time you’ve completed a run from Los Angeles to Albuquerque, you might have entered a kind of meditative state. That’s not going to sound like a great time to some folks, but for those who play video games primarily to chill out after a long day (as I do), it’s one of the games that will best accomplish that goal.” [YouTube][Game Trailer] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 8:27 AM PST - 24 comments

Privacy-Preserving Contact Tracing vs. COVID-19

How contact-tracing apps can foil both COVID-19 and Big Brother: a comic strip explanation of privacy-preserving contact tracing. [more inside]
posted by mbrubeck at 7:30 AM PST - 32 comments

Guys this is the ultimate audio history records

The historical sound recordings collection includes radio reports, specially-produced programmes, interviews and other recordings from the late 1940s to 1980s. For example, the UNESCO World Review was launched in 1949 to present developments in the fields of UNESCO interest, to show concrete examples of international cooperation within these areas, and in those of other United Nations Specialized Agencies, and to make those items alive and interesting
posted by Mrs Potato at 6:13 AM PST - 2 comments

Dioretix. Science of matter over mind. You'd better read it and quick.

Cinematic Literature - a "growing archive of books in films and TV shows" [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 4:21 AM PST - 5 comments

In USA, pandemic seems to be hitting people of color hardest

Although there is uneven reporting on racial and ethnic data, data that is available show significant disparities. Most news reports so far focus on high rates among blacks and Native Americans. But Hispanic Americans or undocumented immigrants might face extra risk due to fears of deportation precluding them from getting tested or participating in contact tracing. [more inside]
posted by NotLost at 12:05 AM PST - 21 comments

April 10

'she hath often dreamed of unhappiness and waked herself with laughing'

Dreams in the time of Coronavirus-- You aren't imagining things. We're all having coronavirus dreams now . (Vice) You can take the dream survey from the article here. [more inside]
posted by frumiousb at 10:01 PM PST - 38 comments

The Sounds of Colors

AudioScreen is an experiment in ways to make images, and specifically colors, accessible to the blind. There is an MP3 demonstration included. [more inside]
posted by Alensin at 6:56 PM PST - 6 comments

We need a more permanent solution to our problem. In the meantime...

For the next several weeks, The Shows Must Go On will be making an Andrew Lloyd Webber musical available on YouTube for 48 hours as of 7 p.m. BST/2 p.m. EDT each Friday, in its entirety and for free. Today, they've aired Jesus Christ Superstar, directed by Laurence Connor and starring Tim Minchin, Mel C and Chris Moyles.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 6:12 PM PST - 56 comments

Experimental Sound Studio: The Quarantine Concerts

Chicago's Experimental Sound Studio has a collection of interesting audio for your aural browsing on their Soundcloud account and YouTube channel. If you check out the latter, you'll find OPTION Excerpts from their weekly music salons, and their latest addition for these trying times, The Quarantine Concerts. [via Mltshp]
posted by filthy light thief at 5:51 PM PST - 4 comments

Previously unreleased Tiny Desk Concert by The Mountain Goats

A Tiny Desk Concert by The Mountain Goats recorded a decade ago it should be noted that Darnielle drew a large and admiring crowd for this show, even though it appears in the video that it was attended exclusively by a photographer and the giant blond head of Lars Gotrich. Trust me: We wouldn't have missed this one for anything. [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 5:05 PM PST - 26 comments

Fran Lebowitz Is Never Leaving New York

The writer on growing old, life in quarantine, and the sadness of seeing her city shut down. Interview by Michael Schulman for The New Yorker.
posted by valkane at 5:00 PM PST - 19 comments

What the Hell Is Going on at Trader Joe’s?

What the Hell Is Going on at Trader Joe’s? — Trader Joe’s employees attempt to unionize amid increasingly stressful (and in some cases, dangerous) work demands brought on by the coronavirus pandemic [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu at 3:16 PM PST - 49 comments

What is SportsCenter without sports?

Lights, cameras, THIS... IS… SPORTSCENTER, 10 minutes go by, all good. A producer, through Elle’s earpiece: ACC Tournament is shut down. All right, go to the college hoops guy, Rece Davis. We’re back. Producer, again: Big 12 Tournament, that’s done too. Break that. We’re going to Jeff Passan, looks like MLB is suspending operations. Back again. NHL is doing the same thing. Fuck. Thirty minutes turns into four hours, leagues dropping one by one. SportsCenter is losing the first half of its name in real time: 'What Am I Going to Do?': Inside SportsCenter on the Day We Lost Sports (Esquire)
posted by not_the_water at 3:09 PM PST - 17 comments

When in doubt, go with Dowd

Andrew Farmer is Ann Dowd as...Daniel Plainview
Andrew Farmer is Ann Dowd as...Darth Vader
Andrew Farmer is Ann Dowd as...The Wicked Witch of the West
Andrew Farmer is Ann Dowd as...Vincent Price doing the monologue from "Thriller" [via Twitter]
posted by Atom Eyes at 2:48 PM PST - 5 comments

“Crazy Cat People,” Explained In Comic Form For The Infected

Do you really love your cat? You might have a brain parasite. (Allyson Shwed, The Nib) Brain parasites previously.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 12:06 PM PST - 35 comments

Rest in Power, Phyllis Lyon

Civil rights pioneer and face of gay marriage dies, aged 95. Gay rights pioneer Phyllis Lyon led a life characterized by a commitment to activism and legal rights for all. She has died of natural causes at her home in San Francisco at age 95. Lyon lived life with “joy and wonder,” said Kate Kendell, a friend and former executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. She said Lyon and her wife Del Martin were activists and mentors long before there was a movement or community. [more inside]
posted by stillmoving at 11:46 AM PST - 20 comments

Name a Color!

Colornames is "A collaborative effort to name every color in the RGB/web space." Here are their latest submissions.
posted by Rinku at 8:13 AM PST - 39 comments

Verdict: 3 out of 5 spoons

New York Times columnist Jamelle Bouie has a side gig reviewing "oddball" cereals for Serious Eats -- "the odder the better". This month's review is for Jolly Rancher Cereal. Previous reviews include Peeps Cereal and Pillsbury Cinnamon Roll Fillows.
posted by Cash4Lead at 7:58 AM PST - 17 comments

"No matter what, never trust a tip."

Due to soaring demand and no available slots, some customers are baiting Instacart shoppers with big tips and taking the tips away after delivery. The result is that gig workers whose income depends on their orders can’t always trust they’ll be fairly compensated for their work. [more inside]
posted by ichomp at 12:01 AM PST - 99 comments

April 9

The radical right wants to do away with democracy and human rights

“Back to the Future? - Weimar Today” (42½min video, .mp4, magnet) A Deutsche Welle documentary analyzing and comparing contemporary German right-wing nationalism to the political right of the Weimar Republic era.
posted by XMLicious at 10:40 PM PST - 13 comments

“All around me are familiar faces...”

Curt Smith of Tears for Fears and his daughter duet on “Mad World” while in quarantine. (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by zooropa at 10:06 PM PST - 30 comments

Grand Theft Accessibility

This video is a demonstration of Grand Theft Accessibility, a mod which does a number of cool things to make Grand Theft Auto playable for the blind. It has been discussed at length on the AudioGames.net forum, but recently had a release.
posted by Alensin at 6:01 PM PST - 9 comments

3D Printed PPE

People with 3D printers are being recruited into networks to produce face shields and other PPE. World wide: Europe, US, Vancouver: 300 masks a day Across BC: Also gowns, etc. My own rural area: Locals with printers plus at least one industrial size unit. Other Stuff?: Untested respirators (may or may not work in hospital settings)
posted by CCBC at 5:47 PM PST - 20 comments

"It always seems impossible until it is done."

On the morning of April 8, 2020, Bernie Sanders spoke to his supporters (YouTube, recorded livestream) to end his campaign, clearing the way for Joe Biden as nominee (CBS News). Sanders said he will remain on the ballot in states that have yet to hold primaries, hoping to rack up more delegates so that his supporters, and his policies, will be able to influence the party platform at the Democratic convention. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 5:37 PM PST - 849 comments

New Jersey needs volunteers who know COBOL

Systems that power unemployment benefits in New Jersey are running off of 40-year-old mainframes. (CNBC)
posted by adept256 at 4:35 PM PST - 67 comments

The Virus Changed the Way We Internet

We are looking to connect and entertain ourselves, but are turning away from our phones. [SLNYT]
posted by Ahmad Khani at 4:20 PM PST - 13 comments

"This is where Mabel is strong..."

Sports commentator Andrew Cotter calls a couple of plays: The Dog's Breakfast Grand Final and Game of Bones.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 4:00 PM PST - 16 comments

ingenuity that comes from necessity

One gamer's quest to achieve the lowest graphics settings [YouTube]
“Though he lives in Barcelona now, The LowSpecGamer (as he likes to be called) was born in Venezuela and grew up unable to afford the newest hardware. For him, learning to push games below their minimum settings was the only way to play them. “There’s always this narrative about PC gaming being about trying to get the best out of the game, trying to get the best graphics and so on,” he says. “That’s the main narrative in gaming culture. That didn’t really fit with what I was doing or how I felt and I thought I was the only one.” [...] “I remember one guy commenting, ‘I don’t see the point of this, you can get a good computer for X amount of dollars at your local store and put it together so I don’t see the point of your channel.’ I was about to answer him when one person responded, ‘The world doesn’t end at your doorstep.’””
LowSpecGamer is a channel dedicated to budget gaming and low graphics, from pushing entry-level and old hardware to its limits to forcing the lowest graphics on modern games by all means possible. [via: PC Gamer] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 3:30 PM PST - 10 comments

"Worst. Quarantine. Ever."

"Our kids were bored after four weeks of social isolation. My wife and I cleaned the basement and wondered what we should do with our old Simpsons Halloween costumes. One of these problems solved the other. The end result was this video." [SLYT]
posted by Atom Eyes at 2:18 PM PST - 8 comments

Carrie Meets Kimberly Meredith: Single-Blind Edition

Carrie Poppy of Oh No Ross and Carrie fame interviews a medical intuitive. It gets interesting. "Carrie follows up with Conscious Life Expo presenter Kimberly Meredith, a self-taught medical intuitive and trance channeler. After an accident and near-death experiences, Meredith claims that with channeled energy and eye blinks she can diagnose conditions with the accuracy of an X-ray and even cure cancer and Coronavirus. Carrie asks Meredith directly about her claims of scientific confirmation, double-blinded testing, and nursing credentials." [more inside]
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:17 PM PST - 22 comments

Corona cuffing

The BBC asks: What’s it like living and working in self-isolation with someone you’ve only just started dating?
posted by mosst at 12:31 PM PST - 12 comments

The Weirdly Enduring Appeal of Weird Al Yankovic

After 40 years, Yankovic is now no longer a novelty, but an institution — a garish bright patch in the middle of America’s pop-cultural wallpaper, a completely ridiculous national treasure, an absurd living legend. [more inside]
posted by chris24 at 11:34 AM PST - 109 comments

“We’re fighting for our survival.”

“Many unions will suffer during the coronavirus crisis, but the situation facing Unite Here is particularly acute. Nearly all of its members are in industries — not just hotels and casinos, but also providing food services for universities, airlines, airports and sports stadiums — that have been ravaged by the pandemic. Two months ago, Taylor could boast that the organization had never seen better days. Today, a staggering 98% of Unite Here’s 307,000 members are out of work, he said.“
posted by The Whelk at 11:15 AM PST - 3 comments

"We understand that the whole world is also impacted by the same crisis"

NASA Astronaut Chris Cassidy, Crewmates Arrive Safely at Space Station. The NASA astronaut, Russian cosmonauts launch to the space station during a pandemic. So, ISS crew blast off after long quarantine.
posted by valkane at 10:38 AM PST - 4 comments

"I'm re-reading...."

Italo Calvino's 14 definitions of a Classic.
posted by storybored at 10:18 AM PST - 19 comments

Shark still looks fake

Project 88 - Back to the Future Too is a shot for shot fan-made remake of Back to the Future Part II divided into 88 scenes, each made by a different person or group. The final result is a mix of live action, stop motion, puppets, animation, and other forms of film making. [more inside]
posted by Clinging to the Wreckage at 9:42 AM PST - 5 comments

best with headphones.

Apocalypse Here: Bernie Krause’s field recordings sound the alarm - "A pivotal figure in early electronic music, Bernie Krause has dedicated his life to recording the Earth’s natural habitats. Dorothy Feaver traces Krause’s journey from Moog sales rep to the mastermind behind the urgent audio-visual artwork, The Great Animal Orchestra [previously]." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:12 AM PST - 3 comments

Invertebrates have a PR problem

Insects do all the dirty work. They process faeces and decompose corpses. Plus they pollinate flowers. In spite of this, their image sucks. We need to change that. Because a dramatic decline in invertebrates threatens the liveability of this green planet. 98% of all animal species on Earth have a PR problem. That’s bad news for everyone. (Tamar Stelling, The Correspondent) [more inside]
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 7:56 AM PST - 30 comments

What Will You Remember?

This site is dedicated to presenting engaging contemporary photography views, reviews and interviews. From the website: "We want to share our excitement about the great photography we discover in clear, conversational language. While we aim to write analytical reviews, we choose not to write derogatory articles. Rather, we prefer to function as a filter, presenting pieces on those exhibits and people we think merit the time and attention of our readers. Through our curated online exhibits and competitive calls for entry, we highlight the most exciting and compelling new photography from across the nation and around the world." [more inside]
posted by wicked_sassy at 6:54 AM PST - 1 comment

Girls Just Wanna Have ...Their Own Museum

Girl Museum is a virtual museum with exhibits and projects about global girlhood, now and in history. Learn about Girl Saints, Illustrated Girls, the history of Girl Groups ; contribute to user projects like Why I Game and Alternative Girls (about the music scene); or download coloring books and pamphlets about girls' rights and safety. Originally envisioned by "Head Girl" Ashley Remer, it is now a the project of a volunteer staff and advisory board whose believe that "it is our responsibility to represent girls and girlhood, to celebrate and make their lives important."
posted by Miko at 6:40 AM PST - 6 comments

"I could turn you into a snowflake."

Marion Nichols makes intricate paper snowflakes. A Flickr album includes examples and templates (with a Creative Commons license). Check out the elaborate octopus snowflake, the friendly otters, or the tail-bumping ankylosauruses. A Saint Louis radio profile describes Nichols' work at the City Museum and includes pictures of more snowflakes, cut from her templates by third-graders. [more inside]
posted by yarntheory at 6:07 AM PST - 3 comments

April 8

Brothers Of A Feather

Via NPR's World Cafe: Chris and Rich Robinson (former Black Crowes) come together to perform and talk on the April 8 episode of World Cafe. Show runs 45 minutes. Song performed are Jealous Again, Thorn In My Pride, She Talks To Angels, and Descending. Page also includes bonus video of performance of Thorn In My Side. Accompanying article provides some perhaps needed context.
posted by hippybear at 8:36 PM PST - 7 comments

An Exotic Drug 'Cocaine' Appears Popular

An oral history of Not The New York Times
posted by Chrysostom at 7:37 PM PST - 10 comments

The Piano Is Still There

The video for Hania Rani's new song, F Major, is a single shot featuring the pianist and 3 dancers performing outdoors in -7C weather in Iceland.
posted by dobbs at 6:27 PM PST - 14 comments

A musical interlude...

Sarah Vaughan, in a live performance from Sweden in 1958, sings Tenderly. Range, vibrato and phrasing...
posted by jim in austin at 5:21 PM PST - 15 comments

Where's the *BWOOOOP*? Let's color with Your Dinosaurs Are Wrong

Take a break and do some coloring with Your Dinosaurs Are Wrong. Chill Coloring Time! (Your Dinosaurs Are Wrong Livestream)
posted by zengargoyle at 5:03 PM PST - 1 comment

Rewriting musical history, re-introducing female composers

She was a remarkably gifted French composer, pianist and singer with a voice of extraordinary range and colour. Rossini told an audience after one of her early concerts: “Mark my words, you will hear a lot more from her. Remember that Rossini told you this.” Liszt wrote that the works by her male contemporaries were mere trifles compared to her 1870 opera Astarté. Yet we find the press of her day concentrating instead on descriptions of her beauty and charm, and speculating about her affairs, and now she is called a minor figure among French composers of her time (All Music biography). Anastasia Belina writes for The Guardian, celebrating Augusta Holmès and other women erased from the musical canon. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 2:25 PM PST - 11 comments

̶P̶e̶p̶s̶i̶ blue.

How Mountain Dew became the Internet’s signature drink. A definitive ranking of almost every flavor of Mountain Dew. Mountain Dew Doritos are here. Pepsi has created Doritos-flavored Mountain Dew. You can buy a candle that smells like Mountain Dew. Mountain dew cake exists. As do Mountain Dew apple dumplings. Mountain Dew is probably not good for your teeth. There's no easy way to dissolve a mouse in Mountain Dew. Mountain Dew does not kill sperm, contrary to popular myth. Mountain Dew Amp Game Fuel is terrible.
posted by Fizz at 2:19 PM PST - 68 comments

Socks, Mittens, Boots, Tux

Socks are rarely seen in wildcats, the elusive and undomesticated cousin of the house cat, so why do so many pet cats sport furry white feet? Turns out it's a result of genetic mutations, domestication and developmental biology. (Live Science). [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 1:42 PM PST - 25 comments

When sports start back, let the women go first

Women’s sports will need help after coronavirus. Thankfully, the solution is simple.
posted by Etrigan at 1:24 PM PST - 12 comments

"I don’t think the government has the authority to close a church."

Florida this week joined the states directing residents to stay home to help reduce spread of the coronavirus but carving out exemptions for religious services [more inside]
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 12:12 PM PST - 134 comments

The Little Story of Gwen

American Cinematheque goes online and debuts Oscar winner Agnès Varda’s ultra rare short 'The Little Story of Gwen from French Brittany' (2008) (yt).
posted by sapagan at 11:56 AM PST - 4 comments

Int’l Literacy Association offer free replay of 2019 conference sessions

“The theme of our ILA 2019 Conference—Creating a Culture of Literacy—focused largely on how to infuse literacy throughout every aspect of the school day and students’ lives. When literacy is embedded in every aspect of education, it creates the environment students need to reach their full potential in the classroom and throughout their lives. These ILA 2019 featured sessions demonstrate the importance of working collaboratively to build and sustain a culture that extends beyond the school setting.” The International Literacy Association is offering a free online replay of six sessions from last year’s conference, available until April 30, 2020. Sessions: 1) Creating a Culture of Literacy; 2) What Research Really Says About Teaching Reading—and Why That Still Matters; 3) We Need More Than Diverse Books; 4) Teaching Vulnerable Youth How to Read and Write: Lessons About Life, Literacy, and the Pursuit of Meaning; 5) Choice, Access, Empowerment: Changing the Game for Young Readers; 6) Motivating Readers From the Inside Out: The Five Key Beliefs That Matter Most for Student Literacy [more inside]
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:12 AM PST - 2 comments

It's raining, so time for some quick exponential decay maths

Tony Lewis, half of the famous Duckworth-Lewis duo, who created their namesake method for calculating the required score for rain-interrupted limited overs cricket matches, passed away this week at the age of 78. [more inside]
posted by inflatablekiwi at 11:09 AM PST - 10 comments

Remember Blogs? They’re back now.

“ Only a third of NYFW shows were in person. People weren’t flying from Europe unless their companies could pay for carbon offset. An acquaintance who split car fare with me at the Paris shows WhatsApped me to say I should eat a plate of gnocchi marinara for her at the red sauce joint that used to be popular with our crowd. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that it was still boarded up.” Nostalgia Is A Permanent Condition, a near future short story at Indoor Voices, a group blog for quarantined writers.
posted by The Whelk at 10:40 AM PST - 14 comments

Drink your capitalism in coffee

“Coffee Collects and settles the Spirits, makes the erection more Vigorous, the Ejaculation more full, adds a spiritualescency to the Sperme, and renders it more firm and suitable to the Gusto of the womb, and proportionate to the ardours and expectations too, of the female Paramour.” An in-depth exploration of coffee as a weapon of capitalism and colonialism.
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 1:41 AM PST - 24 comments

April 7

strange town where men aren’t wanted

Welcome to Lesbianville, U.S.A.: a breathless 1992 report from Northampton, Mass., the Gen X Sapphic paradise that “10,000 cuddling, kissing lesbians call home sweet home” where “one bookshop sells ‘Just Say No To Men’ buttons” and “even the graffiti is gay.” (From the archives of a highly regarded publication called The National Enquirer) [more inside]
posted by roger ackroyd at 11:31 PM PST - 36 comments

“The movement of their noses creates intese negative pressure.”

True Facts About The Wild Oppih
posted by Going To Maine at 10:10 PM PST - 15 comments

Pity the Poor Impressionist

Impressionist, comedian, and actor Jim Meskimen is creating videos of himself with the help of deepfake reciting his own poems in the styles of various celebrities. The technology is becoming increasingly sophisticated as worries about them and the neural networks used to create them keep growing. [more inside]
posted by blue shadows at 7:20 PM PST - 10 comments

John Prine, 1946-2020

John Prine has died, age 73, of coronavirus complications.
posted by theoddball at 6:49 PM PST - 195 comments

Nina Chanel Abney Paints on the Edge of Violence

"Abney locates much of her work on the recognition that abuse and violence are an integral part of the everyday consciousness of people of color. " (Hyperallergic, 2017) "…the artist employs stenciled shapes and symbols (dollar signs, X’s, teardrops, birds, and cats), while channeling safety posters, cartoons, graffiti, Stuart Davis’s jammed together planes of color, Sister Corita’s serigraphs, Emory Douglas’s artwork for the newspaper "Black Panther", and Henri Matisse’s cutouts, to address the prevailing state of incivility, rumor, misperception, and self-righteousness that has descended over America like a radioactive mist, infecting us all.” [more inside]
posted by AndNeverWell at 6:39 PM PST - 3 comments

Cats making "ek-ek" sounds compilation.

Cats making "ek-ek" sounds compilation. SLYT. That is all.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 5:19 PM PST - 44 comments

Closed on account of COVID

You might know of Hal Willner from his work on Saturday Night Live, or from his production credits on albums by Marianne Faithfull, Lou Reed, Laurie Anderson, or the Neville Brothers. If you lived in New York City, you might have see one of his blockbuster concerts inspired by Edgar Allan Poe, the Marquis de Sade, or William S. Burroughs; if you live outside the city, you might have experienced these vicariously through his compilation albums (or PBS specials. After getting “a number one”, Willner died of COVID 19.
posted by pxe2000 at 3:57 PM PST - 23 comments

it’s gotta be big and it’s got to be dumb

It’s Time to Play a Big, Dumb Video Game [New York Magazine] “Roughly 6,000 articles I’ve read over the past two weeks have informed me that now has never been a better time to “get into video games.” If you’re unfamiliar, video games are a form of interactive entertainment; they’re kind of like playable movies, in a way. There are many games you can try during these stressful times. You could play Animal Crossing, in which you perform chores for a delinquent landlord, and which seemingly every review describes as “the game we need right now.” You could play multiplayer games and voice-chat with your friends, or jury-rig a livestream setup that lets you run party games like Jackbox. If you want to spend $300 on used equipment, you can play the novel exercise game Ring Fit Adventure and get buff. You can play a rich, textured role-playing game with a deep and complex narrative. Or you could play a big, dumb game — which is what I recommend.”
posted by Fizz at 1:41 PM PST - 133 comments

Online Play! Six Sites for Playing Boardgames through the Web

While we’ve had to hit the snooze button on conventions and game groups, that doesn’t mean you can’t play with friends and folks from around the world. Do it virtually! Here’s a few sites to help keep you entertained with game-y goodness AND hanging out with other gamers from the comfort of your own couch!
posted by Etrigan at 12:48 PM PST - 25 comments

The Dream Of The 90s

“ Writing about South Park, a silly cartoon, in the middle of an eminently predictable and yet entirely unanticipated global pandemic has an uncanny quality, like meeting a time traveler and realizing that he is you. If I could travel back in time now and meet myself circa, say, 2005, just a few years out of college and struggling to figure out how to become a writer, and tell that younger me that in 15 years, nearing 40 years old, I’d be locked in the house during a plague year writing a review of the political valences of South Park, which would still be on the air, I’d have probably gone to business school sooner than I did. Oh well.” Watching South Park At The End Of The World - Jacob Bacharach (The New Republic)
posted by The Whelk at 10:08 AM PST - 64 comments

Short history on chopsticks, knives, spoons, forks, skewers, toothpicks

If you find yourself with more time to ponder your utensils, Eating Utensils.net may be the site for you. Not too detailed, but just enough to whet your informational appetite. There's the history of cutlery (fork, spoon, and knife), plus other eating utensils (chopsticks, skewers, toothpicks, and drinking straws). To round out the collection, there's also a timeline of eating utensils and more facts. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:07 AM PST - 9 comments

new CDC and WHO guidelines are to keep the mask on

Harvard Law professor Adrian Vermeule recently wrote an article for The Atlantic magazine in which he argued that the American conservative constitutional doctrine of originalism had reached an end and the US Constitution should be re-understood to focus on on the "common good." Vermule: "As for the structure and distribution of authority within government, common-good constitutionalism will favor a powerful presidency ruling over a powerful bureaucracy, the latter acting through principles of administrative law’s inner morality with a view to promoting solidarity and subsidiarity. The bureaucracy will be seen not as an enemy, but as the strong hand of legitimate rule. "
Reaction was .... swift:
Ramesh Ponnuru: A Harvard professor's unsound attack on constitutional originalism. Randy E. Barnett: Common-Good Constitutionalism Reveals the Dangers of Any Non-originalist Approach to the Constitution Eric Levitz: No, Theocracy and Progressivism Aren’t Equally Authoritarian Matt Ford: The Emerging Right-Wing Vision of Constitutional Authoritarianism [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:02 AM PST - 16 comments

On all other nights...

Why is This Passover More Anxiety-Ridden Than All Other Passovers?. Tomorrow night Passover begins, and boy is it different from all other nights. Here's Everything You Need to Celebrate Passover During Coronavirus. If you can't be with your family this year and want to go virtual, then here's Passover Under Quarantine - Everything you need to know about hosting a Virtual Seder. [more inside]
posted by Mchelly at 7:07 AM PST - 26 comments

Family lockdown boogie

Family lockdown boogie (YouTube). Fun music video from a Wellington family of four.
posted by freethefeet at 1:25 AM PST - 4 comments

April 6

Dude, you're getting a Dell!

Computer shop untouched since 2001 (a bit of backstory from Jason Scott).
posted by Chrysostom at 8:06 PM PST - 81 comments

…significant concessions had to be made in terms of image quality

YouTuber works out a method to record video onto a standard audio cassette tape (TechSpot): YouTuber Kris Slyka recently revisited the concept behind an odd piece of kit that toy maker Fisher-Price put out way back in the 80s. In short, he was able to figure out how to record video onto a standard audio cassette. [...] Using a Sony tape recorder, he came up with a method using Python and Java to convert a video signal into one that can be recorded on an audio cassette and successfully played back. There were significant concessions that had to be made in terms of image quality – the resolution was cut down to a paltry 100 x 75 at only five frames per second, and there is no audio – but still, it’s an incredibly fascinating feat: Cassette Video - Video on (Audio) Cassettes! (YouTube) [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 5:16 PM PST - 28 comments

Another art-house auteur often inspired by Los Angeles

"Were it not for David Lynch,” he told the magazine, “Miley would never have been Hannah Montana.” It is among the most beautiful and sublimely odd sentences ever uttered by a country singer discussing a video of his Disney star child ripping a bong.
posted by chappell, ambrose at 1:53 PM PST - 11 comments

Requiescat in pace, Mr. Tiger

Al Kaline , the celebrated Detroit Tigers outfielder and Hall of Famer who never played a game in the minors, won ten Gold Glove Awards, appeared in 15 All-Star Games, and spent 67 seasons with the Tigers organization as a player, TV commentator, and front-office assistant, has passed away at 85. [more inside]
posted by non canadian guy at 1:47 PM PST - 21 comments

This Post Has Y Views

This Video Has X Views The title of this video should change with the times. But nothing lasts forever: here's the story of how I made it work, why it used to be easier to make that work, and how it all ties in to the White Cliffs of Dover and the end of the universe.
posted by Cash4Lead at 1:15 PM PST - 12 comments

The Great Comic Book Cover Homage Streak

In September 2012, Brian Cronin of CBR.com noticed that the cover of the just-released Amazing Spider-Man #694 referenced the first superhero crossover between DC and Marvel in Superman vs. The Amazing Spider-Man from 1976. Cronin realized that so many comic book covers are homages (to other comic book covers, albums, paintings, etc.) that you can find one every week among the pile of comics that come out in the US. Some 392 weeks later, the Great Comic Book Homage Streak has come to an end with the publication of the Robin 80th Anniversary Special, which unsurprisingly references the original cover introducing the Boy Wonder. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 12:39 PM PST - 7 comments

"Whose house is this?"

It's a Cute House and a powerful reminder of the cute in all of us. (NSFW language)
posted by hanov3r at 10:48 AM PST - 26 comments

Wisconsin's Plague Partisanship

Like much of the world, Wisconsin is in lockdown. But unlike any other state in the U.S., it is proceeding with in-person April elections on Tuesday April 7th, despite state health officials, mayors, and news outlets calling this a terrible idea. [more inside]
posted by DrMew at 9:30 AM PST - 97 comments

Celebrating George and Martha Washington in Laredo, Texas

Like many community festivals, Laredo, Texas has an annual celebration in February that is a broad collection of different events, from the Pipes and Stripes Car Show (LMT Online), a 5k race (It's Your Race), a Jalapeño festival (LMT Online) with food and music. And then there are the central, formal festivities, the annual naming of a Martha and George Washington (LMT Online), and the Society of Martha Washington Colonial Pageant & Ball (WBCA Laredo). Las Mathas -- a visit to colonial debutante ball in Texas, where young ladies wear hundred-pound dresses and pretend to be Martha Washington—and the question of what it means to find yourself in the in-between. (The Believer) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:07 AM PST - 4 comments

Cloud gaming

Final Fantasy VII Remake: a flawed, but fascinating, reimagining of a classic [Polygon] “Playing the original release of Final Fantasy 7 in 2020 reveals a game with the energy of someone trying to create a blockbuster with the resources of a high school play. The vision, and the scope, of an epic was always there. The technology was still being developed. It’s that tension that still makes the original game one of the most interesting experiences of its era. The hardware was powerful for its time, but the team already wanted — and probably needed — more. So what happens when those technical limitations are gone, replaced with 23 years of progress? Final Fantasy 7 Remake happens, but how you feel about Square Enix’s effort to remake Final Fantasy 7 today — greatly expanded and unhindered by the technology of yesteryear — may say more about your feelings on technology and nostalgia than the game itself.” [YouTube][Trailer] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 9:02 AM PST - 13 comments

50 shades of gray leaves

Overview of wild and garden plants with gray leaves This article is a very pleasant mix of aesthetics (coming to like gray-leaved plants, what other plants they look good with) and science (gray leaves are mostly found in hot, arid regions, they are usually green leaves covered with little whitish hairs that protect the leaves from heat).
posted by Nancy Lebovitz at 8:30 AM PST - 7 comments

I've been really tryin', baby

In 2015, a group called "Southern Voice Band" with their singer "Ken" gave a small, private birthday party crowd the performance of a lifetime with a spirited cover of "Let's Get It On". Five years later, somebody uploaded the video to r/videos, and the photographer showed up.
posted by growabrain at 8:03 AM PST - 5 comments

Monday morning cute

Dixiedo the rescue fox steals a phone and a chase ensues. Bonus: find out what the fox says. [slyt]
posted by ArgentCorvid at 6:55 AM PST - 15 comments

Garfield As Metaphor For Reactionary Thought

Continuing his series on the Alt-Right Playbook, Ian Danskin of Innuendo Studios discusses how reactionary thinking views social problems and issues - as facts of life (like Mondays) that are based on personal choice, not interconnected systems, and how that positioning leads to both rejection of arguments for mitigation and a push to use the law to punish those who do not follow the "right" way to live. (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 6:48 AM PST - 36 comments

Mom’s Bourbon Chocolate Cake

Open Source Cookbook - Open source recipes to be used in a quarantine during a global pandemic - "This cookbook is meant to be an open source toolkit that everyone and anyone can access during a time of heightened need. There are recipes from chefs, line cooks, home cooks, mothers, fathers, nonnas, popo’s and everyday joes." At launch, it features recipes from Toronto's top chefs and restaurants.
posted by dobbs at 4:29 AM PST - 25 comments

The 700th anniversary of the Declaration of Arbroath

A film to commemorate the Declaration of Arbroath, produced at speed by Lesley Riddoch and Charlie Stuart, including interviews with historians and readings by the public. [more inside]
posted by paduasoy at 12:50 AM PST - 3 comments

April 5

'don't you come near me, "cap" stubbs!'

Drawing Blood looks at The Spanish Flu in Comic Strips [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:13 PM PST - 6 comments

Who Is Keir Starmer?

Keir Starmer new Labour Party leader in Britain as politics reshaped by coronavirus - "Be in no doubt I understand the scale of the task, the gravity of the position that we're in. We've got a mountain to climb." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 8:11 PM PST - 70 comments

His landscape has folded the last time

The inimitable, literary polymath Tim Robinson died from C-19, just two weeks after his wife. His books on the Connemara are beloved and deep. [more inside]
posted by dbmcd at 1:30 PM PST - 16 comments

Alcatraz to the 9th Power Revisited aka Visions of Johanna Live '65

Introduced as both Freezeout and Alcatraz to the 9th Power Revisited, Bob Dylan -- Visions of Johanna, in San Francisco on December 11th, 1965. Well before it was recorded for the album Blonde on Blonde.
posted by y2karl at 11:29 AM PST - 11 comments

Collateral Murder 10 Years On

A short documentary (8 m) about US war crimes in Iraq, as revealed by WikiLeaks. "Today April 05, 2020 marks the 10th anniversary of the publication infamous WikiLeaks publication Collateral Murder video. The video shows how two Apache helicopters murdered 11 Iraqi people including two Rueters journalists."
posted by - at 10:48 AM PST - 14 comments

波動拳 ↓↘→+🤜🏾💥

HADOUKEN! The Secret Move That Changed Gaming Forever [YouTube][Gamespot: Remember When Ep. 01 ] [Evolution of Ryu's Hadouken (1987-2018)][wiki] “The word itself is a Japanese coinage translated as “wave motion fist” or “surge fist” and, in the game’s fiction, is achieved by the fighter concentrating his or her ‘chi’ into a ball of tight energy in the hands, which can then be hurled at their opponent. But in truth, Street Fighter creator Takashi Nishiyama, now president of Dimps (the contractor that created Street Fighter 4), was influenced by science fiction rather than martial arts when he designed the move. While Nishiyama exaggerated real-life martial arts to create the blazing uppercut known as a Shoryuken and the helicopter blade spin-kick known as Tatsumaki Senpukyaku, the Hadouken was lifted from the anime Space Battleship Yamato. The eponymous battleship has a laser missile weapon called Hadouho, which collects energy before blasting it through space towards the enemy. Nishiyama took the concept, shrunk it to human proportions and turned it into a projectile attack that could be used by a character to keep their enemy at a distance in both the original Street Fighter and SNK’s Fatal Fury.” [via: gamesradar+] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 8:44 AM PST - 14 comments

OMG! We Made One Gram Of Remdesivir!

Q: What's worse than being in the middle of a coronavirus pandemic? A: Being in the middle of a coronavirus pandemic and having to read about synthetic organic chemistry...
posted by jim in austin at 7:40 AM PST - 11 comments

“Well, maybe best not to vote for people who think of you as a 'herd'.”

(CW: Dark coronavirus/pandemic humour) Frankie Boyle on the pandemic: “Mistakes have been made in the handling of the crisis. Like flying the Buckingham Palace flag at half mast when the Queen’s not in, which is just an advert for burglars. In my local park, someone has tried to cheer people up by chalking 'You Got This!' on the ground. Literally the last thing you want to hear in a pandemic.” ... “The Prime Minister has written to every household in the UK. As that letter lands on the doormat, I won’t be the only one who’ll be picking it up with a couple of snooker cues, like a contestant on a Japanese game show.” Previous Frankie: [1][2][3]
posted by Wordshore at 1:54 AM PST - 26 comments


Sähkö The Movie is an unconventional documentary by Jimi Tenor about Finland's iconic electronic music label, featuring bits of work by label artists, including Ilpo Väisänen and the late Mika Vainio, of Pan(a)sonic fame
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 1:11 AM PST - 12 comments

The Mouse's Tell

Mice have a range of facial expressions, researchers find — Whether it is screwing up your face when sucking a lemon, or smiling while sitting in the sun, humans have a range of facial expressions that reflect how they feel. Now, researchers say, they have found mice do too. “Mice exhibit facial expressions that are specific to the underlying emotions,” said Dr Nadine Gogolla, co-author of the research from Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology. She said the findings were important, as they offer researchers new ways to measure the intensity of emotional responses, which could help them probe how emotions arise in the brain. What’s more, she said, the findings show mice have a repertoire of emotions.
posted by cenoxo at 12:04 AM PST - 14 comments

April 4

The tumultuous journey of the SS Central America and its gold

On September 3, 1857, the SS Central America left the port of Colón, Panama, en route to New York City with fifteen tons of gold that were prospected in California. The steamship, 425 of its passengers, and more than 20% of Wall Street’s gold reserves at the time, didn't make it, nearly tanked the U.S. economy (David Meyer Creations) as one of the factors in the Panic of 1857 (Library of Congress). 131 years later and 1.3 miles down, treasure hunters found the remains (YouTube, 25 minutes of digitized VHS footage). Numerous people and companies were vying for their share of the gold. The Curse of the Ship of Gold -- How a brilliant scientist went from discovering a mother lode of treasure at the bottom of the sea to fleeing from authorities with suitcases full of cash. (Narratively) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:38 PM PST - 6 comments

Why is Cats?

Any viewer of Tom Hooper's Cats (2019) will find themselves asking one question constantly: why? Lindsay Ellis takes 57 minutes, with copious examples from the film and stage productions and analysis of the differences between the two mediums, to explain: Why is Cats?
posted by zachlipton at 7:38 PM PST - 56 comments

What Armenians should know about life in America

What Armenians should know about life in America. The US has always done an excellent job of marketing itself as the promised land, and the global reach of its mass-cultural and media exports to support that narrative is unrivaled. So, I don’t really need to tell you what is potentially good about it. Instead, I’ll speak to the more ambiguous notes.
posted by simmering octagon at 6:32 PM PST - 42 comments

Blimps go 90, on with the show

25 years ago today, Guided By Voices released Alien Lanes, a benchmark in lo-fi pop that rocketed them from status as an obscure 12 year old housebound indy band that rarely left their hometown of Dayton, Ohio to become a too-big-to-be-cult band that traveled the world and drank all the beer. To commemorate the occasion, Matador Records has released Watch Me Jumpstart, a 38 minute long documentary covering this turning point in the band's life, along with a special edition of Alien Lanes on audiophile vinyl with a limited edition bottle opener.
posted by ardgedee at 4:51 PM PST - 24 comments

National Theatre's "One Man, Two Guvnors"

Right now, until April 9, you can watch the National Theatre's 2011 production of One Man, Two Guvnors as part of their National Theatre at Home fundraiser and awareness campaign. More shows coming soon! [more inside]
posted by kristi at 4:46 PM PST - 12 comments

"When a woman loves a man"

Soul singer Lynn White sings a medley, God Blessed Our Love / When a Man Loves a Woman / That's How Strong My Love Is.
This is from the 1985 "Sorry" album.
posted by growabrain at 4:06 PM PST - 2 comments

Opera in your home

You know already that The Met is making a different opera available every night. But did you know that The Bayerische Staatsoper also has performances available? Or that the Dutch National Opera is also putting operas online daily? The Monnaie in Belgium has until April 19, placed several great performances online like its production of Frankenstein? Arte has added The Hamburg State Opera's Falstaff and others to its content. There are also many operas available for free at Opera.eu
Can’t keep up? The Guardian has a regularly updated page on classical music and opera. But music isn’t just something that used to happen. Watch these performances too from self-isolating orchestras such as this cello octet performing an Arvo Part arrangement.
posted by vacapinta at 1:51 PM PST - 10 comments

“The only thing is this world I’m afraid of is God... and the FBI.”

Have you heard of the rainbow-haired rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine but have no idea why? Are you at sea trying to understand the history of beefs, controversies, success, gang affiliations, federal RICO charges, and snitching? Let a young Englishman in London with a love of hip-hop and brilliant research who calls himself Trap Lore Ross explain it all to you in “The Clout Chronicles”: pt 1: The Birth of 6IX9INE pt 2: How 6IX9INE Stole His Persona pt 3: The Allegations against 6IX9INE (THOSE ONES) pt 4: How 6IX9INE Dominated the Billboard Charts pt5: How 6IX9INE Took Over The Bloods pt 6: The Many Beefs of 6IX9INE pt 7: The Fall of 6IX9INE (Wherein Ross actually dyes his hair rainbow after going that far down the rabbithole) [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 12:24 PM PST - 8 comments

Shuffle your feet, find a new street

Like taking walks just to get the hell outside these days? But you want variety, and not the same ol' walk around the block every time? Then, input your starting address into Routeshuffle, enter the target length of your walk, and Routeshuffle will generate a random strolling course for you. [more inside]
posted by not_on_display at 11:22 AM PST - 31 comments

Essential Labor: Underpaid And In Harm’s Way

“The coronavirus is terrible for all, but more terrible for America’s underclass, now redefined not just as the poor and marginalized, but those who are deemed “essential”—not to heal the sick but mostly to enable the rest of us to successfully shelter in place.” “Essential” Workers Are Dying (Slate) ‘We Will Not Sit Back and Let Transit Workers Be Treated Like Cannon Fodder’ As the death toll mounts, unions representing transit workers in major cities demand protective gear. (The Nation) “As hospitals across New York City are filling up with patients gasping for air, health care executives are slapping gag orders on their workers to control the narrative amid the coronavirus pandemic.” (Politico) We Didn’t Sign Up For This: Amazon workers on the frontline (NYT) The Big Challenge of Being an ‘Essential’ Worker in a Global Pandemic (KQED) “As the pandemic gets worse, delivery workers will get sick – and very likely some of us will die. At what point does it become too much?“ (Guardian)
posted by The Whelk at 10:18 AM PST - 80 comments

Information wants to be blocky

If we do have to live in a dystopic cyberpunk political satire, at least we get to have an Uncensored Library by Reporters Without Borders built in an online video game. Check it out (from minecraft) at visit.uncensoredlibrary.com. Articles from The Verge, TechCrunch and BoredPanda, with pictures for the minecraftless amongst you. Video, too. [more inside]
posted by signal at 9:46 AM PST - 1 comment

4K nature sounds & scenes

2 hours of ambient jellyfish. 2 hours of colorful Macaw parrots. 1 hour of arctic wildlife. 1 hour of Canadian birds and wildlife. 8 hours of desert wind sounds. 4 hours of a rushing mountain river & birds. 10 hours of tropical waterfall. 3 hours of tropical rain forest. 12 hours of white sands and blue water waves. 9 hours of autumnal river. 3 hours of mountain lake. 2 hours of snow gently falling. 10 hours of glacier and falling snow. 10 hour tropical storm. 4 hours of grassland & birds.
posted by Fizz at 8:23 AM PST - 19 comments

We're not doing great

Projections of the COVID-19 impact on health insurance , (PDF) This analysis by research and consulting firm Health Management Associates (HMA) projects three possible scenarios of the impact of COVID-19 on the US health insurance market. They estimate that the mildest outcome will leave 30 million people without health insurance. That rises to 40 million in the most severe scenario. [more inside]
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:30 AM PST - 72 comments

April 3

Ted Chiang Explains the Disaster Novel We All Suddenly Live In

What we’re living through is only partly a disaster novel; it’s also—and perhaps mostly—a grotesque political satire. A 1250-word email conversation between Halimah Marcus and Ted Chiang for Electric Literature.
posted by cgc373 at 11:53 PM PST - 25 comments

An enigma inside an Enigma

Elgar's Enigma Variations has become a well loved piece of classical music, but due to clues the composer wrote in the program and hints he left during his life, it has also led to many attempts over the years to solve the seeming mystery hidden within it. A recent elaborate attempt to crack the code is detailed in over 100 blog postsof course not everyone agrees.
posted by blue shadows at 9:18 PM PST - 10 comments

Voleflix, a public domain movie site

MeFite malevolent trawled some lists of public domain movies (lots of great film noir) and put together a new, improved, or at least free version of Netflix. Behold: Voleflix! Includes films featuring Ed Wood, Fred Astaire, Audrey Hepburn, Vincent Price, Barbara Stanwyck, Cary Grant, Stanley Kubrick, Boris Karloff, Frank Sinatra and more… It also has daft Voleflix Originals and rates your taste in movies from your watchlist. [via mefi projects]
posted by filthy light thief at 7:56 PM PST - 17 comments

Not Very Well Hidden, Really

Crossword editors are strange arbiters of cultural relevance. Read tweets by Awkwafina or Olivia Wilde on learning that they’ve been immortalized in the black-and-white grid—it’s the bookish version of handprints on a slab outside Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. But any pub-trivia attendee—exposed to categories on craft beer or things that smell like sourdough or whatever the emcee is into—will tell you that personnel is policy. That crossword mainstays such as The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and The Wall Street Journal are largely written, edited, fact-checked, and test-solved by older white men dictates what makes it into the 15x15 grid and what’s kept out. The Hidden Bigotry of Crosswords By Natan Last [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 10:21 AM PST - 93 comments

Universal Right To Food

As NYC expands its free meal program to include anybody in the city, no questions asked, and food banks across the country report shortages and half-mile long car lines, food policy experts think expanding and increasing SNAP could stave off poverty and increase public health. Meanwhile, dairy farmers urged to dump milk as demand declines.
posted by The Whelk at 9:57 AM PST - 76 comments

The American Film Institute Movie Club

The American Film Institute is inviting you to movie night - every night. The American Film Institute will select an iconic movie each day for the world to watch together, via their new Movie Club, creating a communal viewing experience during these unprecedented times of social distancing. [more inside]
posted by gudrun at 8:51 AM PST - 10 comments

Ain't No Sunshine

Bill Withers, the soul legend who penned timeless songs like “Lean on Me,” “Lovely Day” and “Ain’t No Sunshine,” has died from heart complications according to a statement from his family. He was 81. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 8:49 AM PST - 93 comments

Join us as we take Venture all the way from the Pacific Ocean 460 miles

Venture to Idaho Join us as we take Venture all the way from the Pacific Ocean 460 miles inland to Idaho up the Columbia and Snake rivers. Learn about the perils of the Columbia River Bar, the famous Lewis and Clark Expedition and the cataclysmic floods which altered the landscape through which we traveled. Stay with us while we take a jet boat through Hell's Gate on the upper Snake.
posted by lungtaworld at 8:32 AM PST - 5 comments

Wholesome gaming post.

The 88-year old grandma who's played Animal Crossing: New Leaf for 4,300 hours (check out her beautiful flower garden) has started to play Animal Crossing: New Horizons. She also has a character in the new game named after her, called Audie, a wolf with a nice pair of sunglasses and some spectacular winged eyeliner. Her name is significant, as Audie is the username used by Audrey when playing Animal Crossing: New Leaf. Nintendo decided to pay tribute to her as a thank you. In this unboxing video, Audrey answers some fan questions and opens a brand new gift - the new, limited edition New Horizons Switch console. She also boots up the game, finding out that her first villager friends are Katt and Bam. [via: Kotaku]
posted by Fizz at 7:53 AM PST - 9 comments

Alternative to Audible

Libro.fm is a neat alternative to Audible. Points in its favor: DRM-free; kick-backs to independent bookstores; credits never expire; not owned by Bezos. Like with Audible, the first month is free. Switching from Audible? First three credits are free by using the code SWITCH. Yes, they have far fewer books than Audible, but the selection is pretty good overall and the sale books have some great titles as low as 69 cents. [more inside]
posted by dobbs at 7:12 AM PST - 11 comments

The Worm is Back!

The "worm" has returned. The futuristic redesign of the NASA logo introduced in 1976 was retired in 1992 with the agency reverting back to the classic "meatball" logo. While the "worm" logo is returning to use, the press release suggests both logos will co-exist and they are "still assessing how and where [the worm] will be used".
posted by Fortyseven at 4:30 AM PST - 60 comments

Overly Descriptive Color Palettes, or Hiya, Jerking Grapefruit!

Do you wish your Crayola box were populated with Ungentlemanly Light Grey and Unauspicious Lilac? Colors.lol has you covered. [more inside]
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 12:42 AM PST - 8 comments

April 2

Which character are you?

This personality test from the Open-Source Psychometrics Project will rate your similarity to over 400 fictional characters, out of works ranging from Parks and Recreation to Pride and Prejudice. [more inside]
posted by mbrubeck at 8:36 PM PST - 182 comments

COVID-19 projections for hospital resource usage

COVID-19 projections for the US, state by state The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation from the University of Washington has offered this tool to help hospitals predict what resource usage will be like over the next few weeks. Numbers are updated daily.
posted by Quietgal at 6:26 PM PST - 47 comments

This post has no dreams.

Ten Rules from a Reader (of Crime and Mystery Fiction) "1. No dreams, please. Supposedly it was Henry James who first said: “Tell a dream, lose a reader.” Billy Collins once wrote a poem called “On Reading In The Morning Paper That Dreams May Be Only Nonsense.” “You hit the pillow and moments later,” he wrote, “your mother appears to you as a llama, shouting at you in another language.” ... There may be people whose dreams provide brilliant insights into their character or provide clever solutions to problems that eluded them during their waking hours. But I’ve never met anyone like that. Any time a friend of mine begins recalling a dream for me, I begin mentally scrolling through my Netflix queue trying to decide what I’ll watch on TV after dinner.... [more inside]
posted by storybored at 6:02 PM PST - 46 comments

smoke-filled rooms

Over the last two years, the Trump administration has sought to undo Obama-era car and truck tailpipe emission regulations, basing their argument on a flawed analysis of U.S. automobile fuel economy standards and 'phantom vehicle miles traveled [VMT]'[PDF].
Gutting fuel economy standards during a pandemic is peak Trump, but then so too is Going Full 'Shock Doctrine' by indefinitely suspending some pollution laws even though air pollution makes respiratory diseases like COVID-19 more dangerous (see Kurt, Zhang and Pinkerton 2016)
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:47 PM PST - 16 comments

If I Wrote a Coronavirus Episode

Tina Fey, Mike Schur, and 35 more TV writers on what their characters would do in a pandemic. Vulture posed the question to dozens of showrunners, creators, and writers; 37 of them responded with scene scripts, monologues, and episode outlines, including a hilarious Skype session between Frasier and Niles, a classic locker-room speech from Coach Taylor, an excerpt from Selina Meyer’s biography, and a vlog for Rogelio De La Vega’s biggest fans.
posted by pjsky at 3:46 PM PST - 13 comments

Dr. Bonnie Henry: (virtual) holder of hands for the Canadian public

[I]n the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Dr. Bonnie Henry, British Columbia’s soft-spoken provincial health officer, has become beloved in households across the country. Each day as she addresses the province at 3 p.m. local with the latest data and policy plan – later beamed across the nation in evening broadcasts – she’s become a holder of hands for the Canadian public. The Dr. Bonnie Henry Fan Club, a fan-curated list of kind words and links about Dr. Henry. "Dear Dr. Bonnie," a tribute song by two Vancouver fans, set to the tune of Hamilton's "Dear Theodosia." Juno Award-winning jazz musician Phil Dwyer's "The Ballad of Bonnie Henry." [more inside]
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 3:35 PM PST - 17 comments


"Frumpy yeast geneticist" Sudeep Agarwala explains how to make your own yeast. More about Dr. Agarwala here. Original Twitter thread here.
posted by ALeaflikeStructure at 2:29 PM PST - 43 comments

Self-isolating with rescue ducks

posted by clawsoon at 2:27 PM PST - 7 comments

Blaze a rainbow path across everything in sight 🌈

Magical Rainbow Sponge (SLYT)
posted by oulipian at 1:13 PM PST - 12 comments

6 Feet Away or 6 Feet Under: NYC This Week

Tompkins Square Park---The Brooklyn Bridge (Part 2)---Union Square---Grand Central Terminal---The Nitehawk---Brighton Beach (Walgreens)---The Oculus---Central Park---Papaya Dog---I Feel Fine
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 12:49 PM PST - 8 comments

Things fall apart

Cristina Monet-Palaci could be described as the First Lady of ZE Records. Her chirpy, sinister single "Disco Clone" was the first the label released. She gained infamy for her updated cover of "Is That All There Is", which Leiber and Stoller forced the label to withdraw (though it came out through other means). After releasing two albums, Doll in the Box and Sleep It Off, she married ZE owner Michael Zilkha, and kept a low profile as the "Madame Bovary of the freeway." Though she spoke of recording another album, her only post-1982 recording is DJ Ursula's single "Urgent, Anxious". Cristina died on 2 April 2020 from complications of the coronavirus. [more inside]
posted by pxe2000 at 11:52 AM PST - 4 comments

It is independent of the fickleness of fortune

How to Spend 42 Days Stuck in Your Room
posted by Chrysostom at 11:32 AM PST - 6 comments

Rome Didn’t Fall In A Day

“ The popular story version of this particular falling empire might focus on a twice-divorced serial philanderer and bullshit artist and make him the villain, rendering his downfall or ultimate triumph the climax of the narrative. But it’s far more likely that the real meat of the issue will be found in a tax code full of sweetheart deals for the ultra-wealthy, the slashed budgets of county public health offices, the lead-contaminated water supplies. And that’s to say nothing of the decades of pointless, self-perpetuating, and almost undiscussed imperial wars that produce no victories but plenty of expenditures in blood and treasure, and a great deal of justified ill will.” How Do You Know If You’re Living Through the Death of an Empire? (Mother Jones) Patrick Wyman, host of the Tides of History and The Fall of Rome Podcast, goes on Trashfuture to discuss late antiquity, measuring imperial fall by letter circulation, western senatorial families as multi-national corporations, and possible future political organizations. (1:17:00)
posted by The Whelk at 9:09 AM PST - 47 comments

A detailed taxonomy of wacky elephant drawings

Elephas Anthropogenus After the fall of the Roman Empire, elephants virtually disappeared from Western Europe. Since there was no real knowledge of how this animal actually looked, illustrators had to rely on oral and written transmissions to morphologically reconstruct the elephant, thus reinventing an actual existing creature. This tree diagram traces the evolution of the elephant depiction throughout the middle ages up to the age of enlightenment.
posted by bq at 8:34 AM PST - 13 comments

Alright, say it. These videos are down-right screwy.

CONCATENATION, an experimental video by Donato Sansone, with sound and music by Enrico Ascoli (1 minute, composed of stock video clips, assembled in a Rube Goldberg type video, with implied violence). Not familiar with Goldberg? Here, he'll show you how to get Something for Nothing (previously). See also: 787 Cliparts by Oliver Laric, a short, silent animation. [Videos 1 & 3 from Kottke]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:14 AM PST - 10 comments

“The Four”

Four Of The World's Best Zelda: Breath Of The Wild Players Create Epic Gameplay Montage [YouTube][Cinematic Combat Montage] “RinHara5aki, Kleric, CHC Yu-Da, and Peco are, on their own, some of the most technically impressive The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild players on the planet — their videos showcasing advanced and obscure combat methods have accrued millions of views on YouTube. The four of them getting together for a single video is almost too much to handle. “The Four” is a combat montage that is the result of four months of work, and it is meant as a last hurrah for Breath of the Wild. With a sequel on the way, group leader RinHara5aki thought it would be a good idea to make a love letter to the game before saying goodbye.” [via: Polygon]
posted by Fizz at 7:04 AM PST - 20 comments

Crowdsourced list of companies and their hiring status

Amazing crowdsourced list of companies and their current hiring status This live, editable and growing Airtable file detailing which companies have layoffs, hiring freezes or are still actively recruiting is fascinating and might be a terrific resource for those of us who have had a job loss due to the economic impact of Covid-19. Also, scroll down for impact by business sector.
posted by vers at 6:48 AM PST - 4 comments

Nobody was hurt.

A train engineer intentionally drove a speeding locomotive off a track at the Port of Los Angeles because he was suspicious about the presence of a Navy hospital ship docked there to help during the coronovirus crisis, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.
posted by PMdixon at 6:46 AM PST - 96 comments

L'Orchestre national de France Plays "Bolero"

A powerful performance in a time of social distancing (SLYT)
posted by Ipsifendus at 6:06 AM PST - 12 comments

Yes, THAT Betty Boop

Mr. Boop: a new daily comic strip [Alec Robbins] invented about what it’s like being married to Betty Boop (slTwitter); also on Thread reader. [more inside]
posted by minsies at 5:42 AM PST - 29 comments

If you ever come back to Hackensack

Adam Schlesinger, of essential power-pop band Fountains of Wayne, has passed at 52.
posted by foodbedgospel at 5:03 AM PST - 82 comments

Stockholm, Are You Listening?

Why Don DeLillo deserves the Nobel by Gerald Howard [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 2:26 AM PST - 16 comments

April 1

Yo dawg I heard you like rock...

This is real rock. Played on a turntable. Loud.
posted by not_on_display at 9:15 PM PST - 15 comments

RIP Krzysztof Penderecki, composer, 1933-2020

A few days too late, because I thought it'd have already been posted, but: Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki died on March 29, 2020. Renowned among other things for his keen explorations of musical timbre, he is particularly well-known for his composition "Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima," and (probably often unknowingly) for his music having been included in the soundtracks of movies such as The Shining. [more inside]
posted by invitapriore at 9:11 PM PST - 23 comments

Piece by piece, only way to make a work of art

Does Mo Rocca's tale of assembling a jigsaw puzzle in isolation make you wish you had your own – but you're concerned about coronavirus-affected mail? New Zealand's Te Papa Museum has you covered, with many works of art available as digital jigsaw puzzles. Prefer American artists? The Colby Museum of Art has a few puzzles for you. Seeking bucolic British scenery? The Pendon Museum has digital jigsaw puzzles featuring early 20th century country scenes in a range of difficulties from children to adults. You can also assemble selections from National Geographic's photo collection piece by piece. [more inside]
posted by rednikki at 8:39 PM PST - 13 comments


Building the Perfect Profanity (Discover): Researchers asked what makes certain words rude, and what happens when you compound profanity with normal words. [The authors] took 487 common, innocuous English words and asked participants to consider how well they would lend themselves to being combined with a profanity (they give the example "assdoor"). "We examined a potential source of emergent tabooness when combining extant taboo words (e.g., shit) with common nouns (e.g., gibbon) to form novel compounds (e.g., shitgibbon). [...]The five strongest candidates for taboo compounding included sack, trash, pig, rod, and mouth ... the five least acceptable candidates were fireplace, restaurant, tennis, newspaper, and physician." (Psychonomic Bulletin & Review study abstract)
posted by not_the_water at 5:34 PM PST - 76 comments

Punctuating the Crisis

I am being hounded by EM-DASHES! Help! How has #covidー19uk become a trending hashtag? Nobody types them in.
posted by Etrigan at 3:14 PM PST - 43 comments

You're The Man Once Again, Dog

YTMND is back. (via waxpancake)
posted by kmz at 3:02 PM PST - 23 comments

Father, city engineer, pancake curator

Edward C. Bennett’s lovely legacy: The Bennett family wrote a descriptive account of their patriarch, a man they clearly adored. “Ed was unnaturally calm, patient, and kind. His sons witnessed when he would smash his thumb with a hammer and he would just say, Nuts!” [more inside]
posted by areaperson at 1:32 PM PST - 9 comments

Tuba Skinny -- Maple Leaf Rag

Tuba Skinny -- Maple Leaf Rag [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 12:52 PM PST - 10 comments

Games in the time of etc

Humble Conquer COVID-19 Bundle
"This special one-week bundle features $1,071 worth of games and ebooks for just $30. 100% of the proceeds from your bundle purchase go to support organizations responding to COVID-19. For example, delivering protective gear to safeguard healthcare workers and providing medical care to infected patients."
Humble Bundle on MeFi, previously. [more inside]
posted by lazaruslong at 10:37 AM PST - 51 comments


What do the names of British houses mean? [slNYer]
posted by Chrysostom at 9:59 AM PST - 40 comments

Welcome to the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) Digital Library

The ACM Digital Library has opened their doors.
Recognizing that many computing researchers, practitioners, and academics are now working remotely, ACM is committed to supporting research, discovery and learning during this time of crisis. For the next three months, through June 30, 2020, we are making all work published by ACM in our Digital Library freely accessible.
posted by zengargoyle at 9:37 AM PST - 17 comments

Take it slowly. This book is dangerous!

Dr. Seuss Raps over Dr. Dre Beats. Youtuber and film director Wes Tank raps Fox in Socks. And if you want more: Green Eggs and Ham.
posted by emjaybee at 7:01 AM PST - 21 comments

April Foods (or Fool's) Day 2020

"Can we agree this year's April Fool's pranks will consist only of delicious desserts disgusted as boring, less-delicious foods?" and "the only april fools jokes i wanna see tomorrow are like: i baked bread today. april fools, i actually baked a cake" share a common sentiment: instead of pranks that might materially deceive anyone on April Fool's Day 2020, let's do silly food-related things. Or make a food bank donation. (Not following those guidelines: the fake announcement "Today Google stops funding climate change deniers" advocating Extinction Rebellion.)
posted by brainwane at 6:29 AM PST - 35 comments

He's busy now in other dimensions. He's not resting.

Tom Every, a.k.a. Dr. Evermor, died on Monday, March 30, 2020 at age 81. His art park, home of the Forevertron, has been featured on PBS, and, naturally, in Atlas Obscura. His body of work, in which junkyard objects gained new life as whimsical creatures and imposing sci-fi contraptions, helped define a genre of sculpture and anticipated the steampunk moment in style. Evermor's art can also be seen at The House on the Rock and in various other places around Wisconsin.
posted by eirias at 6:28 AM PST - 12 comments

"Most people use vim in two stupid dimensions. But not me."

posted by ardgedee at 6:25 AM PST - 22 comments

A nostalgia for misery, a relocation of poverty to aesthetics

Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before: A Study in the Politics and Aesthetics of English Misery, an essay by Owen Hatherley examining the journey of northern-English voters from anti-Thatcherite Labour collectivism to a spitefully reactionary nostalgic nationalism, as seen through the writings and public statements of sensitive miserablist turned fascist sympathiser Steven Morrissey.
posted by acb at 5:15 AM PST - 16 comments

‘Pencils down’

New Comics Day has occurred every Wednesday since the creation of the direct market in the 1970s, as die-hard fans rush to buy new books before spoilers pop up online. But no longer: This week, for the first time in more than 80 years, no new comic books will ship to shops, and production is on hold into the foreseeable future. No previous global event — not the Second World War, not 9/11 — has previously shuttered the comic book industry. Comics vs. coronavirus: Comics industry shut down for the first time in almost a century [The Conversation]
posted by chavenet at 1:29 AM PST - 21 comments

"We hope it brings you some quiet piece and joy"

British folkies Katherine Priddy, Jon Wilks, Lucas Drinkwater, Jon Nice and Knees Thompson have just collaborated (remotely, of course) on this cover of Nick Drake's Northern Sky. It's quite the loveliest thing I've heard all week.
posted by Paul Slade at 1:19 AM PST - 9 comments