September 14, 2017

Grim grinning ghosts come out to socialize

Disney imagineer and legend Francis Xavier "X" Atencio has died. Starting work at Disney in 1938, he worked on such films as Pinocchio, Fantasia, and Mary Poppins, but he is best known for his work on Disneyland, the theme park, several decades later. Of particular note are his lyrics to the songs of two classic Disneyland attractions: The Haunted Mansion's "Grim Grinning Ghosts (The Screaming Song)" and The Pirates of the Caribbean's "Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)." (both links YouTube.) [more inside]
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 11:46 PM PST - 22 comments

There is cake. And there is Victoria sponge cake.

While BBC staff are embroiled in an ugly cheesecake theft incident, a Dorset baker gets on with making a Victoria sponge cake weighing over 300 kg and using 700 eggs. Popular online, sometimes refered to as a Victoria sandwich (the difference explained), and sometimes difficult to bake, this consists of two sponges mortared with a layer of raspberry jam and a layer of whipped double cream, buttercream or vanilla cream. The WI offers a standard recipe though there are variations; some people are alleged to use electric mixers. The cake was named after Queen Victoria, who was known to like a nibble around tea time (4 o'clock in the afternoon). The advice for entering a Victoria sponge cake in a village show is often extremely debatable (and tips). [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 9:35 PM PST - 30 comments

The many lives (and sounds) of Cex: knob-twiddler, rapper, experimenter

Rjyan Kidwell (not a typo) has most commonly gone by the stage name Cex, but his sound has changed in the 20+ years he's made music, from pastoral to glitchy IDM to spoken word-ish rap (?), the dark, messy side of Cex, and even experimental/tribal looping sounds. The death of Cex was speculated and denied in 2006. Six years and ten albums later, he was again presumed dead, this time a self-imposed label. This summer, he released an album of "original stage adaptations of science fiction novels." Cex is clearly not yet dead. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 7:06 PM PST - 12 comments

Hold My Mead Bro

Hold My Mead: A Bibliography For Historians Hitting Back At White Supremacy A collection of academic articles examining the questions of ethnic and cultural diversity across the ancient Roman and Medieval European worlds.
posted by supermedusa at 6:46 PM PST - 22 comments

Lolita the orca left to weather Hurricane Irma on her own

Lolita is the oldest orca in captivity, having lived at the Miami Seaquarium since 1970. As Hurricane Irma blew through southern Florida, she was not transported out of her open tank to a more protected area. In an article in the Miami New Times, former SeaWorld trainer Dr. Jeffrey Ventre calls this "criminal animal negligence or animal cruelty." The Miami Seaquarium did not respond to Dr. Ventre's claims, but after the hurricane they posted a Tweet stating all animals were safe. [more inside]
posted by whistle pig at 4:17 PM PST - 9 comments

Motel 6 is not keeping a light on for its Latino guests.

Two Motel 6 locations are under fire for reporting Latino guests to ICE, resulting in at least 20 deportations. [more inside]
posted by shoesietart at 2:46 PM PST - 52 comments

Bikini Bottom Comes to Broadway

Mefi's own Linda Holmes reviews the original cast recording for "Spongebob Squarepants", the musical.
posted by Ipsifendus at 2:29 PM PST - 7 comments

Judgment Day in EVE Online (again)

EVE Online is infamous for its scammers, pirates, and ne’er-do-wells, but this week all their scams were put to shame. A member of the game’s Council of Stellar Management and head diplomat of the Circle of Two alliance named The Judge stole all of the holdings of the 4,000-person alliance for himself. He took their money, took their ships, and sold their Death Star-esque space citadel to their most hated enemies.
Another story about backstabbing & betrayal in EVE Online for your enjoyment. (But if you want something more meaty, The Empires of EVE podcast is right up your street.)
posted by MartinWisse at 2:28 PM PST - 37 comments

Mitchell and Webb are Back!

Teaser to the new series starring David Mitchell and Robert Webb, named Back. [more inside]
posted by Laotic at 1:44 PM PST - 37 comments

Destruction- annihilation that only man can provoke only man can prevent

When crimes begin to pile up they become invisible.
Accused of Genocide; Nobel Peace Prize winner Aug San Suu Kyi's (wiki) armed forces are pursuing a scorched earth policy towards the Rohingha in Rakhine state.
What created the blueprint for Rohingya genocide in Myanmar? Western colonialism.
Borders, Bureaucracy And The Rohingya Crisis – Analysis.
posted by adamvasco at 12:27 PM PST - 31 comments

Conway Tetris

Your task is to build a cellular automaton using the rules of Conway's game of life that will allow for the playing of a game of Tetris.
posted by gauche at 11:31 AM PST - 24 comments

[ger. Raubdruckerin: pirate printer / feminine form]

raubdruckerin is an experimental printmaking project that uses urban structures like manhole covers [dub-like music], grids, technical objects and other surfaces of the urban landscape to create unique graphical patterns on streetwear basics, fabrics and paper. Every piece is hand printed, mainly on-site in the public space, as a footprint of the city.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 10:50 AM PST - 14 comments

When someone requests a Steve Vai song you try to do your best

"I am a musician from Europe living in United Sates. I do music full time, that includes solo and band performances. This video is from a gig I did on August 16th of 2017. It was a Tuesday night at Motorworks Brewing in Bradenton, Florida. August is off season in that part of Florida so attendance for live entertainment is low everywhere. The first hour was empty, I played for myself, took some video, made up music. [...] Second hour was when a party of three people showed up and that was my first audience of that slow Tuesday night. I greeted them and began interacting in between songs. And after building up a rapport one lady felt comfortable enough to through [sic] out a request. The rest you can see in the video." [more inside]
posted by mosk at 10:19 AM PST - 21 comments

"We see your dragons and have escaped in this bathyscaphe"

It started with a simple question on Twitter: "Who would win in a staff battle between @sciencemuseum (The Science Museum) and @NHM_London (Natural History Museum) what exhibits/items would help you be victorious? #askacurator"

The Natural History Museum was the first to weigh in: "We have dinosaurs. No contest."
The Science Museum was quick to respond: "@NHM_London is full of old fossils, but we have robots, a Spitfire and ancient poisons. Boom!"

What followed was a donnybrook for the ages. (Or for the Twitter-averse, a recap via the London Evening Standard.)
posted by Atom Eyes at 9:38 AM PST - 26 comments

Is flying coach too cramped to be safe?

For years the airlines have been allowed to steadily shrink the size of coach class seats and the space between seat rows without regulators considering the impact of this on safety. In a case brought by the non-profit activist group Flyers Rights and heard by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, a judge said there was “a plausible life-and-death safety concern” about what is called the “densification” of seats in coach. The court ordered the Federal Aviation Administration to respond to a petition filed by Flyers Rights to promulgate new rules to deal with safety issues created by shrinking seat sizes and space in coach class cabins.
posted by Emmy Rae at 8:58 AM PST - 92 comments

Clowns Plan Rally Outside NYC Movie Theater

Professional Clowns Plan Rally Outside NYC Movie Theater, Blaming Movie 'It' for Drop in Business John Nelson, who runs Clowns in Town with a partner, says his business has gotten several cancellations in the last couple of weeks, and he's blaming the supernatural horror movie for scaring the public.
posted by grobertson at 8:39 AM PST - 82 comments

A Singular Man, 1926-2017

J. P. Donleavy, the expatriate American author whose 1955 novel “The Ginger Man” shook up the literary world with its combination of sexual frankness and outrageous humor, died on Monday at a hospital near his home in Mullingar, County Westmeath, Ireland. He was 91. [NY Times] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 8:09 AM PST - 14 comments

“I’m just a guy making jokes on the internet,”

PewDiePie Posts Apology Video After Using Racial Slur by Julia Alexander [Polygon] “Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg has posted an apology video [YouTube] for using a racial slur during a recent livestream [YouTube] almost two days after the initial video was posted. “I’m disappointed in myself because it seems like I’ve learned nothing from all these past controversies,” Kjellberg said. “It’s not like I think I can say or do whatever I want and get away with it, that’s not it at all — I’m just an idiot. But that doesn’t make what I said or how I said it OK. I’m really sorry if I offended, hurt or disappointed anyone with all of this. Being in the position I am, I should know better. “I can’t keep messing up like this.” Kjellberg’s comments resulted in backlash from the streaming community and game developers. Sean Vanaman, developer on Firewatch and co-founder of Campo Santo, tweeted that he would be filing copyright issue takedowns of any video Kjellberg posted playing through the studio’s present and future games.” [Previously.] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 7:58 AM PST - 168 comments

Cassini's final mission ends on 15th September

For 13 years, the orbiter has been sending back to Earth images of its extraordinary discoveries at Saturn. It has documented the possible birth of a moon, tasted an extra-terrestrial ocean and watched as a giant storm encircled the entire planet.
posted by lungtaworld at 7:50 AM PST - 44 comments

Stephen Fry Hates Dancing. Jo Roy Loves Dancing.

Stephen Fry hates dancing. "I hate dancing more than I can possibly explain," he explains. Canada-born, Los Angeles-based dancer, choreographer, and filmmaker Jo Roy (sorry, autoplay music) performs a spirited terpsichorean response to Fry’s monologue.
posted by goatdog at 7:35 AM PST - 30 comments

Oh What a Feeling! (SLYT)

Dancing on the ceiling, the floor, the walls, the parade float, the everything... 80's style The mash-up of 80's movie dance sequence moments you never knew you needed. Sure, you've got your Footloose, your Madonna, your Dirty Dancing, but stay for your Stayin' Alive, your Xanadu, and all the other clips you forgot you loved.
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 6:46 AM PST - 16 comments

Big windows to let in the sun

Hüsker Dü drummer Grant Hart dead at 56. The McCartney to Bob Mould's Lennon, Hart's drumming and songwriting anchored some of the most influential music of the post-punk/proto indie era, both with seminal hardcore band Hüsker Dü, solo and side projects.
posted by tim_in_oz at 5:30 AM PST - 86 comments

The New Zealand Wars 1845-1872

For a time in the 1860s there were more British troops in New Zealand than almost anywhere else in the empire outside India. And the Waikato war was the defining conflict in New Zealand history – a battle between two competing visions of the nation’s future. British victory paved the way for settler and European hegemony, casting aside Māori aspirations for partnership and shared prosperity for at least the next century. Instead, sweeping and indiscriminate land confiscations pushed Māori tribes to the margins of colonial society, condemning generations to lives of poverty. [more inside]
posted by Start with Dessert at 5:26 AM PST - 11 comments

Rocket is fine?

How Not to Land an Orbital Rocket Booster SpaceX shares bad launching and landing experiences, with a soundtrack. (SLY) (via)
posted by doctornemo at 4:34 AM PST - 25 comments

"It’s hard to focus on all those things at once."

For a first-time festival, the Newport Contemporary Music Series boasted a program that might make even Tanglewood blush: a star-studded lineup featuring appearances by Philip Glass, four-time Academy Award winner André Previn, and “Lord of the Rings” composer Howard Shore. The festival hired more than 100 professional musicians to form the Newport Contemporary Arts Orchestra, which over six weeks starting in July was to perform challenging works by some of the titans of contemporary music. The man behind it all: Paul Van Anglen, a 25-year-old impresario who managed to present just three concerts before his grand dream cratered amid charges of broken promises, rank amateurism, and an estimated $120,000 in unpaid orchestra musicians fees, plus tens of thousands more for unpaid soloists and other costs.
posted by showbiz_liz at 4:30 AM PST - 30 comments

Mourning for the night before

The Metaphysics of the Hangover (Mark Edmundson, The Hedgehog Review).
posted by sapagan at 3:17 AM PST - 13 comments

Who Owns the Wealth in Tax Havens?

The ultrawealthy have 10% of global GDP stashed in tax havensand it's making inequality worse than it appears
Annette Alstadsæter, Niels Johannesen, and Gabriel Zucman offer a new working paper about the composition of wealth held in offshore tax havens. Quick summary: "10% of world GDP is held in tax havens. The top 0.1% own 80% of that. The top 0.01% own 50%." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 3:11 AM PST - 29 comments

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