May 19, 2017
Miniature goat vs. a hammock [ambient sounds]. Four minutes of adorable. Bonus: Baby donkey swinging in a hammock [loud non-English cooing]
If you were to define 'comedy roast' by the modern Comedy Central Roasts, you could get the impression that it's a chance to heap scorn on celebrities who are already the focus of some level of public disdain. "Who wouldn’t want to see a similar thrashing, leveled at, say, Lady Gaga or every one of the Kardashians," asked Punchline Mag, but then they looked back at the origins of roast, where "they were originally done in honor or respect — real respect not the contemporary feigned type." Let's look back at the original roasts at the Friars Club in New York City, where things were different from today's TV events, yet some crass elements remain. [more inside]
On June 1, 1965 a mild mannered newspaper copy editor at the Cleveland Plain Dealer set off from Falmouth, Massachusetts in his 13.5 foot wooden sailboat Tinkerbelle and headed east. 78 days later, on August 17, he arrived in Falmouth, Cornwall, England. To his shock he was greeted by 50,000 people (Note: PDF) having become something of a celebrity while at sea. [more inside]
The world was surprised and charmed this week to learn that King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands has been moonlighting as a pilot for KLM twice a month for the past 21 years, flying commercial passenger flights. He is rarely recognized. [more inside]
[tw suicide] A rare glimpse into a struggling culture where Water is Salmon is Life: How a remote California tribe set out to save its river and stop a suicide epidemic - LA Times. Meanwhile, Berkeley linguists and tribal members are working to save the Yurok Language. [more inside]
A lot more. Matthew "Megatoad" Kai Stonie is an American competitive eater and is the number two ranked competitive eater in Major League Eating. Matt won the 2015 Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest. [more inside]
On Missy's 2015 song "WTF (Where They From)," there is a sample of a young girl speaking. The voice belongs to Rachel Jeantel, the friend of Trayvon Martin who was on the phone with him when he was murdered. Missy doesn't bring this up, I do. She goes almost mute when I say that by sampling Jeantel's voice, Pharrell and she have done a remarkable thing that has reversed what usually happens to the words of girls who look like Rachel Jeantel.From Elle's June edition cover story on Missy Elliott as interviewed by Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah.
The 2007 Invasion of the Bodysnatchers is generally considered to suck, with a flat performance from Kidman, a weak ending and no Donald Sutherland. But what if it there was more to it than people thought? 'The Invasion' as Anti-Fascist film [via mefi projects]
A neural network is attempting to learn to drive in GTA V [CW: Profanity, and probably some car crashes] [via waxpancake]
After publishing The Rise And Fall Of T.D. Lysenko via samizdat (eng. trans. 1969), Zhores Medvedev was hounded by the Soviet secret police until his exile in the UK. There he continued to write, and after the success of his book Soviet Science (1978), Zhores Medvedev followed it up with Nuclear Disaster In The Urals, which pieced together rumors, scientific reports, and news articles to conclude that there had been an enormous radioctive release near Kyshtym in 1957, and the USSR was covering it up. [more inside]
The Fondoodler is a hollow cartridge and ratcheted plunger mounted in a nozzled pistol, with heated tip. Discharges cheese. [The Guardian] “I’m looking at it right now, and I still don’t know what it is. First impressions are that it resembles one of those “pump up your junk” home devices that, once Googled, will be advertised to you for ever (#apparently #whoknows #notme). I push the cartridge through a block of red leicester – like taking a punch biopsy – then return it to the gun, and plug in to heat. The process “works” with any cheese – I pull the trigger and orange discharge wriggles forth on to Ryvita, where I write my name in coagulating fat. Then I draw some boobs, and then I’m out of ideas. Actively trying to doodle defeats the point, whatever the point of doodling with cheese is in the first place.”
Thousands of 'Second Life' Bunnies Are Going to Starve to Death This Saturday. If this feels oddly familiar, this is why.
Perspectiva Corporum Regularium: that is, a diligent exposition of how the five regular solids of which Plato writes in the Timaeus and Euclid in his Elements are artfully brought into perspective using a particularly new, thorough and proper method never before employed. [more inside]
What happens when you use machine translation on repeating pairs of Japanese syllables? Insane computer poetry (courtesy of Language Log). More examples collected in examples posted by Naomi Clark; likewise from Dan Luu. [more inside]
In the latest installment of old/rich people blame millenials for everything, a multi-millionaire property dealer (who inherited wealth) suggests they cut back on the avocado toast so they can buy property. The New York Time fact-checks his "claim", as does SFgate (post title from this), LA Times and CNBC, while social media is wtf, emoji, nope, singing. Elsewhere, gadgets to help you make avocado toast, or consider moving to Ireland. [more inside]
Isaiah Xavier Howard is a young rapper/musician who makes incredible and unique music videos with just an iPhone. You've never seen anything like it. It quickly garnered the attention of filmmakers and creators Matthew Cherry, Nick Childs, and was RT'd by the director of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. From Jordan Peele: "Isaiah, let's talk." [more inside]
Matt Zoller Seitz at vulture.com walks through the reasons that the new "Twin Peaks" isn't likely to mesh well with today's style of internet-enabled fandom.
For reasons unknown, "Mr Brightside" is currently in the UK charts. Looking at the UK chart history, you may be surprised to learn that there is actually not a single year since its release in which "Mr Brightside" has not been in the Top 100. [...] We have thought long and hard about this and come up with a few theories about what might be prompting this return to glory, which we are going to share with you below, because we care.
Until the National Park Service took it over in 1968, nobody had ever formally surveyed the trail; a story about the massive project to set survey markers along the entire Appalachian Trail. The trail is also marked with many kinds of less formal AT art. No one is certain if the AT monogram was initially intended to be used as a directional arrow.
Big John was going to extort a million dollars from Harvey’s Wagon Wheel Casino in Lake Tahoe, and he planned to do it by building a bomb.