March 14, 2018
Glaucous, the Greeny Blue of Epic Poetry and Succulents, Katy Kellehe - "English has a lot of terms for blue-y greens and greenish blues, and some of them feel like arbitrary bullshit." [more inside]
Titan might seem an unlikely place to for humans to build settlements, and maybe eventually colonize. After all, it is so far from the sun, and extraordinarily cold, and it's a long journey to get there (at present). But actually, if you set aside the difficulty of getting there, which we should overcome as our technology improves—it's got more going for it than you might think.
Blowzabella (Wikipedia; official website) was formed in east London in 1978 by two students of musical instrument making at the London College of Furniture, Bill O'Toole and Jon Swayne. They named their band after an English jig (and bawdy drinking song), "Blowzabella My Bouncing Doxie." The band has grown and changed over the decades, but has always included bagpipes, a hurdy-gurdy and an array of acoustic instruments, used to make driving, drone-based sound influenced by British and European traditional dance music. You can hear that sound on Soundcloud, or see a ton of their material on YouTube, from a live performance in three parts from 2013 (live at Cecil Sharp House, where they'll return) to a video of one of their new songs featuring vocals, "Adam Was A Poacher." [more inside]
The Housemartins 1986 debut album London 0 Hull 4 [YT album, ~37m] mixed old rock styles and gospel and a lot of other stuff (jangle pop, anyone?) to chart strongly in the UK and in Europe. [Ed. note: it's a genuinely rewarding listen.] It also had quite a few hits: Side A: Happy Hour [video, weird artifacting but it is the full video], Get Up Off Our Knees, Flag Day (fan video), Anxious, Reverends Revenge, Sitting On A Fence [more inside]
"A totally true account of a time I went off-line." Vann R. Newkirk II decides to outdo Farhad Manjoo. [more inside]
In addition to Star Trek: The Animated Series, He-Man, She-Ra and some other fondly-remembered shows, Filmation also produced, well, a lot of ridiculous crap. Here is some: an hour of "Fraidy Cat," nearly two hours of "Quackula" (unrelated to Cosgrove-Hall's much better Count Duckula), and an unsold pilot for "Dick Digit," an action/comedy show, that has to be seen to be believed. [more inside]
Who maps the world? Why women cartographers are important.
Freedom of Information requests are a fantastic tool for citizens and journalists alike, but they're also a favourite with people who have an axe to grind. When 'James' demanded to know why he had to pay for Adult Social Services and the Fire Brigade though, he probably didn't expect so blunt an answer from South Somerset District Council.
Buy High, Sell Cheap: An Interview with Alejandro Jodorowsky (Elianna Kan, The Paris Review).
In the aftermath of rape, Alison Kinney discovers that a new lover who helps you to heal can just as easily betray you.
From the team that brought you March Fadness (previously) and March Sadness (previously) comes 𝔐𝔞𝔯𝔠𝔥 𝔖𝔥𝔯𝔢𝔡𝔫𝔢𝔰𝔰 - a literary tournament of hair metal songs.
The Urban Freight Lab studies traffic at, as it were, the capillary level. Package delivery, trash pickup, loading zones, parking or not.
"Frozen" drag queen helps police van break out of snowbank "A drag queen dressed as Elsa just single-handedly freed a stuck police wagon from a blizzard in the middle of March. If that sentence doesn't perfectly encapsulate the spirit of Boston, I don't know what does." (Video credit: Christopher Haynes). SLTwitter
Alex Gorosh and Wylie Overstreet showed some people the moon.
Anecdotes about any particular diet’s efficacy are often trumpeted by highly motivated individuals in which the diet may align with their personal ideologies. But when thinking about health and nutrition in a scientific way, how should we internalize them?Colby Vorland from the American Society for Nutrition discusses how we should view diet anecdotes.
The Trains Are Slower Because They Slowed the Trains Down — in which Aaron Gordon, writer of Signal Problems, the best newsletter on the subway, and Village Voice MTA reporter finds a report from 2014 and the best facebook group ever, and gets to the heart of what really be slowing down the trains in New York.
So yeah. Nectome is a preserve-your-brain-and-upload-it company. Its chemical solution can keep a body intact for hundreds of years, maybe thousands, as a statue of frozen glass. The idea is that someday in the future scientists will scan your bricked brain and turn it into a computer simulation. That way, someone a lot like you, though not exactly you, will smell the flowers again in a data server somewhere.A startup is pitching a mind-uploading service that is “100 percent fatal.” Nectome will preserve your brain, but you have to be euthanized first. [more inside]
Rock Hudson walked out of the premiere, Hal was originally a cockney, and Stanley Kubrick used one of the model spaceships to pay his daughter’s tutor … the makers of the sci-fi classic share their memories. By Phil Hoad for The Guardian.
Introducing... Jetpack Cat. [YouTube] “Jetpack Cat isn’t an official Overwatch hero (yet), but this faux-hero-introduction video from To Binge does a great job of illustrating why the scrapped idea turned incessant in-joke would be perfect for the job. Here is concept art of legendary scrapped Overwatch hero, Jetpack Cat. During a BlizzCon panel about Overwatch’s formative days, game director Jeff Kaplan and art director Arnold Tsang talked more about his origins, saying that they were trying to figure out how far was too far with regards to character designs. “We tried a robot monkey. We tried a crocodile!” said Tsang. That led to Jetpack Cat, who—despite being one of the most popular early hero designs at Blizzard—was scrapped because, Kaplan explained, it was “not Overwatch at this point.” A gorilla scientist from the moon, however, was fine.” [via: Kotaku]
Is the Crème Egg Yorkshire Pudding really a cake? A recent surge in cake news has provided (Prince and more Prince) a delicious antidote (Little Debbies) to politics (though, as with Nailed It, politics still often lurks). Cheshire cat cake roll and dog cakes. The Royal wedding cake may be banana and not fruitcake (and other breaks with tradition). Pear, rye and cardamom cake, and "when he went to buy a cake". Ben and Jerry's release a new flavor, which may appeal to French rugby players. Debbie Wingham busily makes an expensive cake and a Kim Kardashian cake. The most instagrammed cake in the world? Kaffee und kuechen helps big business in Germany. Newark castle. Bake this courgette cake. Also, Nick Hewer's buns and Irish apple cake and cake from 17 years ago this Saturday.
Today, Americans consume about 1.5 billion pounds of potato chips every year. But the origin story they've been fed is probably a myth, historians reveal. [more inside]
Always Human, by Ari Walkingnorth: In a future Australia, where body modification mods are ubiquitous, Sunati is fascinated by a woman she sees at the train station, who apparently has no mods at all. An offer of an anti-allergy mod simply upsets the woman, and causes her to leave. In a second meeting, the woman, Austen, explains over a cup of coffee; she has an overactive immune system, meaning she can't use mods at all. Day to day things that are simple for everyone else, like enhanced memory or changing her features, are frustratingly difficult or impossible for her. On impulse, Sunati asks her out, and despite her reservations about Sunati’s motives, Austen agrees... [more inside]