February 9, 2017

Thaipusam Valthukal!

The Men Who Carry Thaipusam In honour of the religious festival of Thaipusam (which was yesterday in this part of the world), Malaysia's The Star prepared a multimedia piece on a little-known aspect of the festival, the kavadi porters. What is Thaipusam? A quick primer. And an interesting list for those who already have some familiarity: Do you know what this day is all about? [previously]
posted by cendawanita at 11:40 PM PST - 5 comments

Uganda Cowries Stamps

"In 1895 Ernest Millar, a young Cambridge graduate, sat in a hut in the depths of the bush in Uganda, making stamps on his typewriter. Uganda had just become a British Protectorate and George Wilson, the first government official posted there, decided that this called for an issue of stamps and a postal service to use them. The Church Missionary Society was the only organisation with a network across the country, and Millar was the only missionary with a typewriter. So it fell to him to design, and make, the first stamps."
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:20 PM PST - 14 comments

"Stupid" being the operative word here

21 Wonderfully Stupid Life Hacks
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 8:31 PM PST - 83 comments

Retro-future electro-hip-hop-alien-abduction-funk from Barclay Crenshaw

If you're into house music, you might know the name Claude VonStroke for his "punchy percussive basslines that sound like a giant rubber ball being dropped on the roof of the club." He has toured extensively, released numerous mixes and three albums under that moniker. But he has shifted gears, musically speaking, and recently released a self-titled debut album as under his birth name, Barclay Crenshaw. And he gets weird, exploring themes of alien abductions and inquiries of time and space, set to electronic with hip hop reminiscent of the 1990s. His music videos and album art / liner notes (PDF) point to hidden messages about extra terrestrial artifacts, discovered in 1884, which indicated alien abductions. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 7:37 PM PST - 7 comments

Food of the Enslaved

Michael Twitty (previously) and Jas. Townsend and Son present Food of the Enslaved, a series that focuses on historic foods of the enslaved African community of North America. The first two episodes are available online, covering the histories and preparation of barbecue and okra soup. [more inside]
posted by sp160n at 6:49 PM PST - 8 comments

Green thumbs up!

How To Buy Plants And Keep Them Alive. "Plants are great. You’re going to want to own a plant and keep it in your apartment. Why? They can clean the air, increase productivity and most importantly, they will cheer you up. Honestly, when has a plant ever made you feel grumpy? Yeah, exactly.​ But even though they’ll never run away, cry or make a mess — plants are still a handful. It’s not always clear which ones to buy, where to put them or even how to keep them alive. Thankfully, within the last 10,000 years or so, humans figured out how to care for plants. And Christopher Satch, the in-house plant specialist at The Sill, is here to pass along that knowledge to you. "
posted by storybored at 6:20 PM PST - 40 comments

“...American history wells up when Aretha sings.”

Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin Announces Her Retirement [The Guardian] ““I must tell you, I’m retiring this year,” the 74-year-old told the Detroit TV station WDIV Local 4, saying she wanted to spend more time with her grandchildren before they left to go to college. First, though, she will record an album part-produced by Stevie Wonder to be released in September, about which Franklin said she felt “exuberant”. Stepping back from performances was bittersweet, she said. “This is what I’ve done all of my life.” But she added: “I feel very, very enriched and satisfied with respect to where my career came from and where it is now.””
posted by Fizz at 2:45 PM PST - 22 comments

Back. Better. Still hates Mondays.

Lasagna Cat (more up to date YouTube channel) was a bizarre homage to the syndicated comic strip Garfield, produced by the digital content house FatalFarm (previously). After a decade in hiatus, Lasagna Cat is back! Content Warning: Some comic gore and disturbing imagery throughout, slightly NSFW. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 1:42 PM PST - 30 comments

How to stop an autocracy

The danger isn’t that Trump will build an autocracy. It’s that congressional Republicans will let him. "If Congress, tomorrow, wanted to compel Trump to release his tax returns, they could. If Congress, tomorrow, wanted to impeach Trump unless he agreed to turn his assets over to a blind trust, they could. If Congress, tomorrow, wanted to take Trump’s power to choose who can and cannot enter the country, they could." The problem is that the different branches of government, instead of balancing things out by being important checks on each other's power, have instead become simply different manifestations of one of two major parties. Our granfalloons are out of alignment. [more inside]
posted by Sleeper at 1:37 PM PST - 65 comments

Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan, Inc.

The members of the Automotive Legacy and Collections Board studied a total of 2234 episodes in the history of Japanese automotive technology...
We are honoured to present the results here:
the 240 Landmarks of Japanese Automotive Technology
posted by timshel at 1:34 PM PST - 8 comments

The defense of liberty can't do without identity politics

After ably re-butting claims that a backlash against political correctness was responsible for Trump's election political scientist Jacob Levy offers a broader celebration of what’s sometimes (and usually derisively) called “identity politics. [more inside]
posted by layceepee at 12:29 PM PST - 51 comments

Demoralizing and disheartening times.

Almost three weeks into his presidency, President Trump's nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge Neil Gorsuch, has allegedly been telling senators that comments that attack judges are "demoralizing" and "disheartening." This morning, the president "[told] airline CEOs they—& govt.—are using “obsolete” equipment “the airports give you.” Trump says his pilot, “a smart guy,” told him." This evening, the Senate will vote on Trump's nomination for HHS Secretary, Tom Price. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:27 AM PST - 2982 comments

Party on Wayne, party on Garth

Did You Know There Was a “Wayne’s World” Board Game? Did you know said Wayne’s World game had a videocassette that was used for game play?
posted by Artw at 11:11 AM PST - 20 comments

Serial Killers Should Fear This Algorithm

Building software to find killers Data analyst Thomas Hargrove believes each major city has a "few" serial killers.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 11:01 AM PST - 27 comments

“The key is, you have to love them like your own."

'I know they are going to die.' This foster father takes in only terminally ill children
posted by cwest at 9:23 AM PST - 23 comments

Mushrooms. Racism. Murder

When it comes to poisoning, there is one mushroom that kills more than any other. Amanita phalloides, more widely known as the death cap, is said to taste delicious. Its symptoms often don't surface until a day after it is eaten, initially seeming like a mild stomach illness, even as the death cap quietly destroys the diner's liver. Some years, the mushroom might kill a few elderly foragers in France, and a few more in the U.S. and Italy. But in reality, the vast majority of people killed because of mushrooms die before they ever get a chance to empty their basket and eat DEATH IN THE FOREST by Jousha Hunt: the story of Oregeon's mushroom hunting boom and the crime that followed.
posted by The Whelk at 7:40 AM PST - 39 comments

Every Jason Statham Punch. Ever [Up to and including Furious 7] SLYT 4m

Every jason Statham Punch. Ever [Up to and including Furious 7], for 4min 26 seconds Pretty much 4 minutes straight of Messieur Statham enthusiastically punching people * [more inside]
posted by Faintdreams at 6:25 AM PST - 23 comments

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