September 20

"And then I said to Werner, 'See?! Someone wants a close-up!'"

Nicolas Cage reminisces about some of his most iconic roles.
posted by smoke at 1:09 AM - 1 comment

We bought a zoo

When the Tweedys bought a zoo in Borth, west Wales, it was a dream come true. But it soon turned into a nightmare of escaped animals, deaths and family feuding
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:04 AM - 1 comment

Typewriters, Cash Registers, and Calculators

Picture the keypad of a telephone and calculator side by side. Can you see the subtle difference between the two without resorting to your smartphone? Don’t worry if you can’t recall the design. Most of us are so used to accepting the common interfaces that we tend to overlook the calculator’s inverted key sequence.
posted by eotvos at 12:43 AM - 2 comments

September 19

The Most Perfect Album

We invited some of the best musicians in the world to create songs inspired by each of the 27 amendments; a kind of “Schoolhouse Rock!” for the 21st Century. [more inside]
posted by Pyrogenesis at 11:02 PM - 1 comment

Even Holofernes’ headless corpse is like mehhhhhhhhhhhh

Ranked: 10 Paintings of Judith Beheading Holofernes (SLListicle).
posted by Capt. Renault at 10:19 PM - 7 comments

Toronto racoons are at it again

Toronto resident Jenny Serwylo had enjoyed a quiet evening at home Tuesday and had gone to bed when she was startled awake by noises coming from her kitchen. [more inside]
posted by Secret Sparrow at 9:25 PM - 5 comments

Learning From Bob

Robert Venturi, famed-postmodernist and icon of American architecture, passed away Tuesday at the age of 93. [more inside]
posted by q*ben at 8:44 PM - 4 comments

The Most Unread Book Ever Acclaimed

The online reader reviews I found varied between naked revulsion and sheepish endorsement. One Amazon reviewer claimed he had given a copy of the 1198-page novel to each of his friends and promised that if they finished, he would pay for their children’s college education. “I’ve paid for no one’s education!” he wrote.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:42 PM - 19 comments

At Least That's What He Wants You To Think

Alan Abel, notorious hoaxer and director of Is There Sex After Death? is dead ...again, this time at 94. Previously, previouslier
posted by dannyboybell at 8:38 PM - 3 comments

Chevy Chase can’t change

The 74-year-old comedy star is sober and ready to work. The problem is nobody wants to work with him. [Washington Post]
"Chase can be arrogant, unpredictable and mean. He is a masterful put-down artist. He can be blunt or tone-deaf, depending on what he fesses up to, and he doesn’t always seem to understand the fine line between comic provocation and publicity disaster.

But Chase can also be hilarious, sensitive and surprisingly supportive. Sometimes, he’s all of these things at once."
posted by riruro at 4:35 PM - 75 comments

"'Accepting charity is an ugly business'"

"My return to the refugee camps, 30 years on": Dina Nayeri was eight when she and her family fled Iran. Are today’s refugees treated with more dignity? (SLGuardian)
posted by praemunire at 2:04 PM - 2 comments

The last area of medicine where we prescribe tough love

The terrible irony is that for 60 years, we’ve approached the obesity epidemic like a fad dieter: If we just try the exact same thing one more time, we'll get a different result. And so it’s time for a paradigm shift. We’re not going to become a skinnier country. But we still have a chance to become a healthier one. [more inside]
posted by devrim at 1:58 PM - 45 comments

I’ll make $0 off of all of this by the way.

WorkMarket is a "payment processor" that Huffington Post, Yahoo, and many other media companies use to pay freelancers. WM offers a super-convenient feature called "FastFunds" that gives those freelancers the "opportunity" to be paid immediately, rather than after the usual few weeks that a megacorp will make a freelancer wait, in return for an 8% cut, which works out to about a 200% APR. They won't call it a payday loan, though. [CW: Pointless picture of injured bird at top of article]
posted by Etrigan at 1:58 PM - 22 comments

Drawings of golf courses leads to man's freedom

With an investigation Golf Digest helped open, an Erie County court vacated Valentino Dixon's murder conviction after he had already served 27 years in jail
posted by vespabelle at 1:22 PM - 11 comments

Ghost Plants (not greenery)

Reusing huge abandoned Sears buildings across urban America. A few years back, I [author] moved into a Sears building — no, not that famous skyscraper in Chicago, or one of those department stores in the suburbs, but a city block-sized brick behemoth just south of downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota. Formerly known as the “Sears, Roebuck and Company Mail-Order Warehouse and Retail Store,” it was a distribution center for an empire that revolutionized commerce in the 20th century. Today, it plays a new role in the post-industrial age, as do a series of similar-looking Sears “plants” in cities around the United States. [more inside]
posted by MovableBookLady at 12:48 PM - 29 comments

This Is Just To Say

Nine Plums (by listing-to-port; previously, originally)
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:01 PM - 5 comments

Seeing the face of Harriet Tubman staring back at you from a $20 bill

"I was inspired by the news that Harriet Tubman would replace Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill, and subsequently saddened by the news that the Trump administration was walking back that plan. So I created a stamp to convert Jacksons into Tubmans myself. I have been stamping $20 bills and entering them into circulation for the last year, and gifting stamps to friends to do the same." [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 11:22 AM - 37 comments

"I like how y'all literally gained a crowd in seconds"

Get your KPOP dose for the day with the KPOP IN PUBLIC challenge, including my fave Taiwan. Need more?
The Seoul Shinmun sponsored a 2018 K-POP Cover Dance Festival in June 2018. The video of the finals include groups from MEXICO | UNITED STATES | RUSSIA | INDONESIA | THAILAND | PHILIPPINES | JAPAN [more inside]
posted by spamandkimchi at 11:04 AM - 5 comments

Bad medicine sings false

Musical instrument goes flat in presence of adulterated medicine (Ars Technica). Heran C. Bhakta, Vamsi K. Choday, and William H. Grover at the Grover Lab in the Department of Bioengineering, University of California, Riverside have figured out a way to modify an mbira to turn the instrument into or allow people to make an inexpensive sensor, when paired with a digital audio recorder, such as an iOS or Android phone, and the lab's online sound analysis tool. Full description in their paper Musical Instruments As Sensors (ACS Omega, 2018, DOI: 10.1021/acsomega.8b01673). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:27 AM - 7 comments

I'm not on the menu: McDonald's workers strike against sex harassment

The Guardian: Workers at McDonald’s restaurants in 10 cities [across the United States] walked off the job on Tuesday to demand that the company address sexual abuse and harassment....Organizers said this was the first nationwide strike ever called specifically to protest sexual harassment. According to a 2016 survey, at least 40% of American women in the fast food industry have been sexually harassed on the job, and 20% of these women experienced retaliation from supervisors after reporting the harassment--higher for women of colour. In May 2018, the national US labour organization Fight For $15 backed ten women from different American cities who filed a federal suit against McDonald's for failing to respond to harassment or retaliating after a harassment complaint.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:26 AM - 9 comments

Steam men

Life on a steam railroad in the 21st century. [SLYT] 26min
posted by pjern at 9:53 AM - 2 comments

all that is solid melts into air

The Dirty Secret Of The World's Plan To Avert Climate Disaster - Abby Rabinowitz and Amanda Simpson, WIRED.
The UN report envisions 116 scenarios in which global temperatures are prevented from rising more than 2°C. In 101 of them, that goal is accomplished by sucking massive amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere—a concept called “negative emissions”—chiefly via BECCS. And in these scenarios to prevent planetary disaster, this would need to happen by midcentury, or even as soon as 2020. Like a pharmaceutical warning label, one footnote warned that such “methods may carry side effects and long-term consequences on a global scale.”... Today that vast future sector of the economy amounts to one working project in the world: a repurposed corn ethanol plant in Decatur, Illinois. Which raises a question: Has the world come to rely on an imaginary technology to save it?
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:38 AM - 27 comments

2018 surplus of $45 billion, with a B.

“Apple’s revenues come from purchases made by consumers across the entire wealth distribution, but the moment that money hits Apple’s ledger it comes under the control of the elite: most shares of Apple, like most shares of stock in general, are owned by the wealthy. While stock markets have reached record highs in recent years, fewer Americans own stock than ever before, with the top 10 percent of the wealthiest households owning 84 percent of all stock in 2016. (According to economist Edward Wolff, this is up from 77 percent in 2001.) The bottom 80 percent of households, by contrast, own just 7 percent of stocks. The preponderance of Apple’s income is transferred to shareholders, who largely fall into the upper echelon of the economy. - Apple redistributes more wealth upward than any corporation or country on the planet.“ Think Different ( Boston Review)
posted by The Whelk at 9:34 AM - 32 comments

Canon Fodder

Where's the country music on Pitchfork's Best Albums of the 1980s?
posted by naju at 9:19 AM - 44 comments

"I didn't want to be the last person to look away"

I reviewed police documents, interviewed witnesses and experts, and made several pilgrimages home to Texas to try to understand what exactly happened to Wyatt — not just on that night, but in the days and months and years that followed. Making sense of her ordeal meant tracing a web of failures, lies, abdications and predations, at the center of which was a node of power that, though anonymous and dispersed, was nonetheless tilted firmly against a young, vulnerable girl. Journalists, activists and advocates began to uncover that very same imbalance of power from Hollywood to Capitol Hill in the final year of this reporting, in an explosion of reporting and analysis we’ve come to call the #MeToo Movement. But the rot was always there — even in smaller and less remarkable places, where power takes mundane, suburban shapes.
posted by perplexion at 8:59 AM - 12 comments

"How Hannah Stands Up to Schizophrenia"

Hannah Bryndís Proppé-Bailey talks about how stand-up comedy and football help her deal with schizophrenia (autoplaying video, may blow dust into eyes) for UEFA’s Equal Game project. Earlier this year Hannah Jane Cohen interviewed her about her comedy.
posted by Kattullus at 8:54 AM - 0 comments


Every Keanu Reeves Whoa In Chronological Order (1986 - 2016) [YouTube]
posted by Fizz at 8:46 AM - 19 comments


You Might Have Earned It, But Don't Forget That Your Wealth Came from Society - "The distribution of that wealth doesn't rest on markets or on social perceptions of who deserves what but on the ability of the powerful to use their power to retain whatever of the value society generates that they can." (via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 6:14 AM - 14 comments

No, I Will Not Debate You

In a new longform piece, Laurie Penny explains why debate is not going to save us from fascism, that arguments defending bad faith debate are disingenuous, and why she won't debate those operating in bad faith. (SLLongreads) [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 5:17 AM - 70 comments

September 18

Food, glorious food

25 Restaurants That Seriously Need To Chill TF Out
22 Crimes Against Food Serving Committed By Restaurants SOME OVERLAP DON'T @ ME
25+ People Who Never Figured Out How Food Works
20+ Memes For People Whose Religion is ‘Food’
21 Of The Laziest Things People Have Ever Done To Food LAST THREE ARE NOT LAZY FOR SOME FOLKS
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:45 PM - 86 comments

The long run.

I overheard a young man on the train on the way home today, talking to another young man. Holding hands. In college, I guessed. About that age anyway. Much younger than I am. He was talking about AIDS, in a scholarly way. About how it had galvanized the gay community. How it had spurred change. Paved the way to make things better, in the long run. The long run.
posted by gwint at 9:44 PM - 35 comments

Oh, and that man? Buried with an axe.

"I know that sounds absurd, like PC culture gone amuck. Men are, on average — and I don’t mean to disparage the capability of individual men here — less competent on the battlefield. Their higher center of gravity makes them less stable. Their voices are too guttural and low to carry well across the din of battle. Testosterone makes them prone to irrational behavior and leaves them poor candidates not just for leadership roles but even subordinate roles. Their larger body mass makes them easier targets for missile weapons and less capable of the sorts of guerrilla tactics that vikings favored on their raids. To say nothing of how men are socialized to constantly bicker with other men."
- Some Viking Warriors Were Probably Men
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 6:50 PM - 20 comments

I can't remember the last time a singer gave me chills like this.

Bent Knee's phenomenal album Land Animal is a study in contradictions: haunting at once effervescent, and metal and poppy and contemplative all at the same time. In short, it is a fantastic time.
posted by rorgy at 5:51 PM - 13 comments

Party Rock Dogma

Party Rock Anthem has the same BPM as the Evangelion Opening and I hate it Now show me the reverse, coward. Good idea!
posted by Sokka shot first at 4:16 PM - 36 comments

The womenly women of New Zealand

New Zealand women won the right to vote on 19 September 1893 - 125 years ago today*. In doing so, New Zealand became the "first self-governing colony in the world in which all women had the right to vote in parliamentary elections." Join us to celebrate Suffrage 125: Women, the Vote, and Activism [more inside]
posted by Paragon at 3:53 PM - 7 comments

It settles my beef with Carl Jung and his one-man Canadian cover band

It is no wonder that old ideas of the masculine persist, in a kind of camp afterlife, transmitted largely via jokes we really mean and ironies that aren’t fully ironic.
Philip Christman writes an essay on contemporary masculinity, "What Is It Like to Be a Man?"
posted by Rumple at 3:07 PM - 85 comments

I stopped writing when we saw the new, bad MRI.

Last year, Rob Delaney (of Catastrophe and Deadpool 2) started writing a book proposal about his two-year-old son's brain cancer. He never finished it, because Henry died in January. This week, Rob published some of what he had written. Content Warning: medical description of childhood cancer
posted by Etrigan at 1:26 PM - 23 comments

Adumbrated sex mars rationality

The usual jerks (internet mobs, shaky governments, lickboot capital) attack female ASMR artists.
posted by clew at 11:55 AM - 23 comments

Forging Islamic science

Fake miniatures depicting Islamic science have found their way into the most august of libraries and history books. How? [more inside]
posted by standardasparagus at 11:48 AM - 12 comments

160,000 letters seized by British warships will be scanned and published

"You can't love me anymore if you don't answer. I will now stop writing. I give up." A cache of 160,000 letters, posted between 1652 and 1815 but seized by British warships and never delivered, will be scanned and posted online for all to see. A large percentage have never been opened. For many that were, it's tragic to imagine that they were never received: an indentured servant writing to her father, apologizing for whatever she did wrong and begging him to send clothes because she doesn't have any, or a wife writing to her distant husband saying that he must not love her any longer because he is not responding to her letters.
posted by quarantine at 11:44 AM - 26 comments

Can one movie revitalize a community?

The first Haida language film could have lasting impacts [more inside]
posted by poffin boffin at 11:20 AM - 5 comments

Banana Mob Rule: Produce, Blackmail and the Mafia in Ohio

Frank Oldfield was the Postal Inspector who took down America’s first organized crime ring, The Society of the Banana (Politico). The Black Hand or "Society of the Banana" terrorized new Italian immigrant communities in parts of the US by mail. An Ohio history writer contends that organized crime didn't start in the U.S. in Chicago or New York, but in Marion (Marion Star). The grip of "la mano nera" spread across the Mid-west, as tracked by postal inspectors (Littleton Independent, 1909). The story of how a postal worker brought them down was almost lost forever (Vice) -- in part because Oldfield's family feared retribution, generations later.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:18 AM - 7 comments

Subscribe to the RSS feed to make sure you know when a new post is out

The Life, Forking, and Death of Great Data Exchange Formats or TwoBitHistory on RSS. [more inside]
posted by cichlid ceilidh at 8:53 AM - 48 comments

Freddie Oversteegen

The remarkable obituary of Freddie Oversteegen, hero of the Dutch Resistance. [more inside]
posted by saladin at 8:34 AM - 14 comments

Uncommon People

In 1999, Channel 4 sent Pulp's Jarvis Cocker around the world to investigate outsider art and interview its creators; the result was a fascinating three-part series: Part one (France). Part two (US). Part three (Mexico, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, and India). A full list of the featured sites (some of which no longer exist) is posted here.
posted by carrienation at 8:32 AM - 5 comments

Matilda turns 30

Illustrator Quentin Blake imagines Matilda at 30. “I am sure that someone who had read so many books when she was small could easily have become chief executive of the British Library, or someone exceptionally gifted at mental arithmetic would be perfectly at home in astrophysics. And if you have been to so many countries in books, what could be more natural than to go and see them yourself?”
posted by ChuraChura at 8:21 AM - 13 comments

Would you like to see something A M A Z I N G?

Pick a number, any number and this fun little site will show how it is the sum of three palindromes! It doesn't seem like it should be possible, but it always is, in any base, and most of the time there's more than one way to do it.
posted by Jpfed at 8:08 AM - 13 comments

But I Like You

Sesame Street writer Mark Saltzman confirms the that characters of Bert & Ernie were written as a gay couple.
posted by seanmpuckett at 7:12 AM - 139 comments

Higher. Further. Faster.

The first trailer for Captain Marvel has dropped.
posted by dinty_moore at 6:22 AM - 129 comments

Моё имя — твой страх, кровоточит на губах

СКАЗКА / FAIRYTALE is the latest song from Moscow's IC3PEAK [more inside]
posted by griphus at 6:01 AM - 3 comments

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