7.26.2009

Lance Not in Yellow

Lance Armstrong finishes third in the Tour de France. This is what he said about the less favorable results: "I'm realistic, I did everything I could...For me, and even more for my kids, it's probably a healthy thing for them to see, because they saw their dad that never lost, and the kids in their class (say) 'your dad never loses,' so it's good for them to see dad get third and still be cool with that and still be happy."

7.24.2009

Professor Murder Rides the Subway

The New York Times would like to remind you that just because print is dead, it doesn't mean that other things aren't dying too. Things like New Yorkers. And so they've compiled a morbidly fascinating homicide map of the city covering the years 2003-2009. Now I can positively confirm that there has not been a murder within a one-block radius of my apartment since 2004. Should I be relieved or terrified?

And just because it seems appropriate to the situation:

Losing Your Mind?

Being in a city is stressful to your brain. Only a few minutes on a crowded street and the brain has less self control and is able to hold fewer things in memory. 

7.23.2009

Testing Integrity

Lost your wallet recently and wondering the chances that it will be returned? Check the statistics out at Wallettest.com

7.20.2009

7.16.2009

Appalachia/Argentina?

South Carolina's Mark Sanford is not the first politician to pull a disappearing act.

Going to die

A story out of the UK has folks talking...was an apparent double suicide by a prestigious couple that had been together over fifty years illegal, or love?

7.15.2009

Obama Lost His Telempromter, But Kept His Focus

While giving a speech on urban policy, President Obama's teleprompter shattered on the floor. Fortunately, he was able to continue with his remarks.

7.14.2009

The Process of Weeding Out



Awful Library Books is an entertaining blog where librarians post books that should be removed -- "weeded" -- from their collections. Like the 1983 exercise guide above.

I'm always a little disappointed to hear about books getting thrown away. Somewhere, I imagine there's someone who needs that 1966 copy of The Guide for Young Homemakers. But in reality these outdated books shouldn't be taking up space on library shelves. There are plenty of new, hopeful authors who would be happy to fill them.

And really, does anyone need this coffee table book from 1977?:

Lost in translation

Engrish collects awkward English translations of Japanese advertising and product design.

7.10.2009

Who Killed the Big, Bad Werewolf?


According to Science Daily, Charles Darwin did:

From the late 19th century onwards, stories of werewolf encounters tailed away significantly, says [Brian] Regal. “The spread of the idea of evolution helped kill off the werewolf because a canid-human hybrid makes no sense from an evolutionary point of view,” he says. “The ape-human hybrid, however, is not only evolutionarily acceptable, it is the basis of human evolution.”

Thanks to Bob Powers for the tip!

7.09.2009

Flags of Forgotten Countries

Dark Roasted Blend has posted a series on flags that have been permanently furled. Why? Because their nation has ceased to exist. Such as the Most Serene Republic of Venice:
And the Empire of Brazil:

7.08.2009

RIP: Mollie Sugden

Mollie Sugden, the wonderful actress who played Mrs. Slocombe on British hit comedy Are You Being Served?, passed away on July 1st. The Telegraph's obituary perhaps sums up why her character was such a popular and enduring one:
Mollie Sugden's Mrs Slocombe was a recognisable working type – the shopworn divorcee trying to keep up appearances, defying the years with ever more lurid rinses, and returning home alone each night to her "little pussy", to which there was always at least one reference in every show.

Mrs Slocombe had an arch, Ortonesque way with the unfortunate phrase: "Captain Peacock, I do not respond to any man's finger!", she says in response to a summons from the boss. "Before we go any further, Mr Rumbold, Miss Brahms and I would like to complain about the state of our drawers. They're a positive disgrace."
Of course, this video tribute really captures the essence of the show's humor. Comedy never really changes, does it?

7.07.2009

Japan's Capsule Apartments Face Demolition

The New York Times' laments the potential destruction of Tokyo's Nakagin Capsule Tower, one of the few examples of Metabolist architecture. As you can guess by these photos, it was built in the '70s:





The architect, Kisho Kurokawa was also well-known in the '60s for the Space Capsule Disco, which unfortunately doesn't seem to have photos readily available on the internet.

Another day, another bookstore down

The Trover Shop is closing in Washington, DC.

Horse Slaughter

Despite the recent legislation closing down horse slaughter houses in the United States, thousands of horses continue to cross the borders to Mexico and Canada to meet an unfortunate fate. 

7.06.2009

Over 150 People Lost in Chinese Riots

Rioting that began on Sunday in the Xinjiang province have killed over 150 people.

The end of French Cuisine?



Maclean's magazine reviews Au Revoir to All That: Food, Wine and the Death of France by Michael Steinberger, including this terrifying news:

Charles de Gaulle’s famous remark—“How can you govern a country which has 246 varieties of cheese?”—grows ever more hollow. Prized cheeses are dying out as their makers retire unreplaced: in 2005, septuagenarian CĂ©lina Gagneux hung up her ladle and a two-centuries-old Alpine cheese, Vacherin d’Abondance, went extinct. Other raw-milk varieties—real cheeses, in the judgment of connoisseurs—even the iconic Camembert, are also under threat.

Not the Camembert! Read the full review here.

7.02.2009

It's all online

Check out the "Wayback Machine" and see what your favorite websites used to look like--and perhaps, as we said in 2005, to see what was, what isn't, what won't.