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22 Oct 00:13

Weed-Smoking Siberian “Ice Princess” Would Have Loved Modern Brooklyn

by Kyle Koster
Weed-Smoking Siberian "Ice Princess" Would Have Loved Modern Brooklyn

Scientists searching for the cause of death for an ancient woman found in the Altai Mountains in 1993 believe she may have been self-medicating with pot.

The mummified remains of the woman, who is believed to have lived in the 5th Century BC, revealed well-preserved tattoos. The exact circumstances surrounding her death have remained shrouded for the past two decades, but now scientists believe they have an answer. She was likely suffering from breast cancer reports the The Siberian Times.

Their findings suggest she was using cannabis to dull the pain associated with cancer and osteomyelitis, an infection of the bone or marrow.

Dr. Natalie Polosmok, an archeological professor, says the use of such drugs is helpful in understand their importance during such primitive times.

In ancient cultures, from which there is a written testimony, such analgesics were used wine, hashish, opium, henbane, an extract of mandrake, aconite and Indian hemp,” she said. “The Pazyryks knew hemp and its features.”

It is known that in her burial chamber was a container of cannabis.

‘Probably for this sick woman, sniffing cannabis was a forced necessity,’ said the scientist. ‘And she was often in altered state of mind. We can suggest that through her could speak the ancestral spirits and gods. Her ecstatic visions in all likelihood allowed her to be considered as some chosen being, necessary and crucial for the benefit of society. She can be seen as the darling of spirits and cherished until her last breath.’

Siberian scientists have discerned more about the likely circumstances of her demise, but also of her life, use of cannabis, and why she was regarded as a woman of singular importance to her mountain people.

Her use of drugs to cope with the symptoms of her illnesses evidently gave her ‘an altered state of mind’, leading her kinsmen to the belief that she could communicate with the spirits, the experts believe.

Put more simply: she was the life of the party. Most impressive is the intricate nature of her ink. One has to imagine the pressure to tattoo the group’s princess was pretty intense. Although, considering the fact they were already in Siberia, it’s not like they could threaten to send you some place worse.

(Image: Wiki Commons)

The post Weed-Smoking Siberian “Ice Princess” Would Have Loved Modern Brooklyn appeared first on ANIMAL.

16 Aug 14:26

Quirky Facial Fitness Device

by catcat

You may often take exercise, however, there’s one area of your body that has been neglected, the facial ...Continue Reading
02 Jun 02:54

List of banned Music from the USSR

by René

Seit ein paar Tagen geistert eine Liste zensierter Mucke aus der ehemaligen Sowjetunion durchs Netz, die stammt aus einem 2013er Buch von Alexei Yurchak, der New Scotsman hat die ganze Story dazu. Besonders hübsch, neben den gewalttätigen Village People und den ollen Neofaschisten 10cc und Julio Iglesias finde ich ja die Gründe für die Zensur der Talking Heads und Pink Floyd: „Myth of Soviet Military Danger“ und „Interfering the foreign policy of USSR“. Prima Albentitel, wenn man mich fragt.

The blacklist, titled ‘The approximate list of foreign musical groups and artists, whose repertoires contain ideologically harmful compositions’, was drawn up by Komsomol, the Communist Party’s Youth Wing. It was written in the obscure and verbose language of Soviet bureaucracy and riddled with classic Cold War paranoia. […]

The document stated: “This information is recommended for the purpose of intensifying control over the activities of discotheques” and “must also be provided to all VIA [vocal instrument ensembles]“.

They were banned in the USSR

02 Feb 07:45

Creative Portraits of Two Adorable Cousins Living on a Farm in Buenos Aires

by Pinar

The Adventures of Guille and Belinda is the visual tale of two cousins in South America captured by San Francisco-based photographer Alessandra Sanguinetti. The photographer, who was primarily raised in Buenos Aires, came upon the two playful girls named Guillermina and Belinda (affectionately referred to as Guille and Beli) while visiting her father's farm in Argentina.

At first, Sanguinette disregarded the imaginative children as they vied for her attention or audibly goofed off. She says, "Beli and Guille were always running, climbing, chasing chickens and rabbits. Sometimes I'd take their picture just so they'd leave me alone and stop scaring the animals away, but mostly I would shoo them out of the frame.  I was indifferent to them until the summer of 1999, when I found myself spending almost everyday with them."

The photographer wound up documenting their playful nature as nine- and ten-year-olds on a farm. Their rural environment even ended up serving as a wonderful backdrop to their clever role-playing games and general fun. In the end, paying attention to the duo through her lens has resulted in a book that captures both the beautiful relationship between two cousins and an honest sense of an innocent, imaginative childhood.

Alessandra Sanguinetti website
via [Dark Silence in Suburbia]
29 Dec 13:35

If You Were Ever A Teenage Boy, You Know This Amazon Review For Tissues Speaks The Truth

by Mary Beth Quirk


Ah, satire. You might not be the honest to goodness truth when it comes down to it, but at the same time you are often more honest than the alternative. To wit: A review for Kleenex Facial Tissues entitled “A Mother’s Struggle” might be written by an actual mother of three teenage boys, but it will cut you to the quick with its realness.

While I’ve never been a teenage boy (I did grow up with three brothers, so I’m not unfamiliar with their kind) it’s not too difficult to imagine the very real pain a mother might experience at having to keep her home supplied with tissues.

We’re just gonna let this Amazon review by Top 1,000 reviewer (and children’s author) James O. Thach speak for itself. It just popped up on Reddit, where it bounced over from

“I want to start this off by thanking Kleenex for selling these in 36-packs. I’ve put it on subscription, and if they want to start selling a 72-pack, sign me up. I have three reasons for needing this much Kleenex, and their names are Liam, Samuel and Hank,” writes the struggling “mom,” who adds that the Kleenex is the first to go, followed by toilet paper and inevitably, fabrics.

“And you don’t want it to get there, unless you’re ready to invest in a five gallon drum of Fabreeze,” she notes.

Wait… is she talking about — Yes. There you go. You’ve got the gist.

“This used to be a good Christian home. But it’s not about moral judgment anymore. I’m way beyond that,” laments the reviewer, who, of course, at one point was actually once a teenage boy. “I’m in survival mode. If I don’t supply absorbent paper products, I’m going to find my dish towels hidden in the basement, stiff as aluminum. The other day, I almost cut my hand on a sock. I am sorry to speak so frankly, but with three teenage boys, a woman has got to be practical.”

Satirical Amazon reviews: Providing a voice for fictional parents everywhere since [insert year someone first thought to write a satirical Amazon review].

19 Dec 04:50

A 92-Year-Old Grandmother Creates A Spectacular Collection Of Embroidered Temari Spheres

by Audra

A 92-year-old Japanese woman’s amazing collection of painstakingly-crafted traditional Japanese temari handballs has been unveiled to the public for the first time – and it’s all thanks to her granddaughter, Flickr user NanaAkua.

Apparently, her grandmother learned the technique of this traditional Japanese New Year‘s day gift in the 60s and had not stopped creating new ones ever since. Now, she has nearly 500 differently-patterned spheres in her collection, and it doesn’t look like she’s ready to stop anytime soon.

The art of temari began in China and came to Japan in 7th century. It soon became a tradition for grandparents and parents to stitch the balls using silk scraps from old kimonos and give them to their children for New Year’s day. The technique requires an enormous amount of patience, precision, good eye-sight and pretty dexterous fingers. NanaAkua’s grandmother doesn‘t seem to lack any of those, which is why these handmade treasures strike us with awe.

A neat idea for the Christmas season, isn’t it?

Source: Flickr (via: colossal)



















A 92-Year-Old Grandmother Creates A Spectacular Collection Of Embroidered Temari Spheres originally appeared on Bored Panda on December 18, 2013.

10 Dec 02:14

EXCLUSIVE: Meet the Love Child Rev. Sun Myung Moon Desperately Tried to Hide

by Mariah Blake

When the Washington Times threw its 20th anniversary gala in 2002, conservative luminaries lined up to pay tribute, including Ronald Reagan, who addressed the packed ballroom via video. Afterward, the paper's enigmatic founder, the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, took the podium. "Even before the term 'family value' became a popular phrase, every day of the week the Times was publishing articles highlighting the breakdown in values and what must be done to return to a good, moral society," he said, through a translator. "Today, family values have become an essential piece of the social fabric in America, even becoming part of the political landscape. We can be proud of the Washington Times' contribution that promoted and elevated family values to an essential part of society in America and the world!"

Moon, the founder of the South Korea-based Unification Church, which had hundreds of thousands of adherents at its peak, claimed to be on a divine mission to salvage humanity by rebuilding the traditional family. Before his death last year at age 92, the self-proclaimed messiah—who was known for marrying off his followers in mass weddings—presided over a multibillion-dollar business empire. And he plowed huge sums of money into politics, launching a vast network of media outlets and front groups that promoted conservative family values and left a lasting mark on the modern-day GOP.

Park and Choi at home
Sam Park with his mother, Annie Choi, and a portrait of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, whom he would later learn was his father. Courtesy of Samuel Park

But this family values crusader harbored a secret. While he was promoting marriage as the solution to society's woes and inveighing against "free sex," his personal life was full of philandering—including at least one adulterous relationship that produced a son. To hide the boy's identify from his followers, Moon instructed his right-hand man, who was also the founding president and publisher of the Washington Times, to raise the child. Moon's illegitimate son, Sam Park, who is now 47 years old and lives in Arizona, also helped guard his father's secret, by staying silent. Until now.

Park, who has shaggy salt-and-pepper hair and a mellow demeanor, resides in Phoenix with his 77-year-old mother, Annie Choi. Their story, which I touched on in a recent article about the unraveling of Moon's empire in The New Republic, casts a spotlight on the hidden history of Moon's church, a strange but influential institution that has maintained close ties to the Republican Party since the Reagan era.

Choi says the initiation rites for early female disciples involved having sex with Moon three times. She also alleges that Moon kept a stable of a half-dozen concubines, known as the Six Marys.

Choi joined Moon's church along with her mother and sister in the early 1950s. At the time, the family lived in the southern Korean city of Pusan. Moon had fled there after escaping a communist labor camp in North Korea, where he was imprisoned, reportedly on bigamy charges. Initially, he had only a few dozen followers, who met in a two-room house on the outskirts of town and were expected to sacrifice everything for the church. For young female members, this included their virginity. Choi says the initiation rites for early female disciples involved having sex with Moon three times. She also alleges that Moon kept a stable of a half-dozen concubines, known as the Six Marys, and inducted her into the group when she was 17. Sometimes, she adds, he would assemble them all in a circle and take turns mounting them. Choi's account is consistent with those of other early followers, who claim that Moon's church began as an erotic cult, with Moon "purifying" female followers through sexual rites. (One former acolyte published a book on the topic in Japan.)

According to Choi, Moon persuaded her mother, whose husband owned one of Korea's largest insurance companies, that their family played a special role in God's plan: Just like Jacob, who married two women and had children by them and their handmaids, Moon would marry both of her daughters, and they would give birth to the world's first sin-free children. Choi's mother was so devoted to this vision that in 1954 she sold one of the family's homes and gave the proceeds to Moon. Soon thereafter, he opened a church in Seoul and his movement began to flourish. By 1959, more than 30 churches had sprung up around Korea, and Moon's teachings started to spread to other countries.

But that year Moon's marriage plans hit a snag, when Choi's older sister abandoned the church and broke off the engagement. Rather than marry Choi, in late 1959, Moon, who was then 40, began casting about for another bride. He quickly settled on his cook's daughter, a shy 17-year-old girl named Hak Ja Han. After their wedding in early 1960, Moon—whose church was rapidly expanding into the United States—began teaching that marriage was the key to salvation. He and his new wife would create the "prototype of the perfect family" and give birth to sin-free children. Followers could join his sinless family by keeping themselves chaste until Moon married them off in one of his now-famous mass-wedding ceremonies and then building strong, faithful families of their own.

During this era, Moon preached that sex outside of marriage was the worst possible sin. But Choi and other insiders allege that Moon's philandering continued long after his own marriage. Choi says she kept having sex with him regularly until 1964, when she moved to the United States to attend Georgetown University, in Washington, DC. Prior to her departure, Choi claims, she and Moon were married in a secret ceremony at his church. The following year, Moon made his first trip to the United States and stayed for several months with his deputy, Bo Hi Pak, near the nation's capital. During the trip, he spent a good deal of time with Choi. (One photo from the era shows the two of them and Pak huddled in front of the Washington Monument.) Before long, Choi was carrying Moon's child.

Continue Reading »

08 Nov 16:53

Sleep Through Your Alarm

by Amanda Fiegl
A new study examines the connections between sleep and memory—and shows how the brain can be trained to overcome fear.
08 Nov 02:59

The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience, 1966 This is a sober...

The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience, 1966

This is a sober and authoritative appraisal of what is currently the most controversial development in the study of human personality. The authors have spent a combined fifteen years in closely controlled and thoroughly documented research with nonaddictive psychedelic drugs, and most particularly with LSD-25 before it was declared illegal. Avoiding the starry-eyed claims and the fiery denunciations of the pro and con factions, this book sheds much new light on the possibilities and the limitations of these drugs, as well as on the techniques for working with them - Back Cover (via Erowid)

05 Nov 16:33

News: Creepy Anonymous Clown Terrifies Northampton Residents

by Cary McNeal
KILL IT. From The Independent (UK). 'He doesn't juggle. He doesn't twist balloons into animal shapes. He just stares': Creepy clown terrifies Northampton residents by Rob Williams A creepy and anonymous clown has been terrifying residents of Northampton by standing around on street corners and staring at passers-by. The clown, who bears a striking resemblance to Pennywise from the Stephen
29 Oct 19:58

All-American Exorcist Girls Next Door

by Cristen Conger
A screenshot of the BBC segment on the "all-American" teen exorcists.

A screenshot of the BBC segment on the “all-American” teen exorcists.

At first I thought I had misread the BBC headline “Teen exorcists: Women who expel demons on stage.” But, no, it really was a report on a trio of “all-American girls from Arizona” who say they met at martial arts class and now travel the world exorcising demons together alongside the one of the girl’s dad and exorcism “mentor,” Rev. Bob Larson of Spiritual Freedom Churches International. Armed with Bibles, silver crosses and their black belt moves, Brynne Larson, Savannah and Tess Shurkenback energetically pray and attempt to cast believers’ so-called demons back to hell.

Though I don’t doubt the veracity of their faith, however radical it might be, the BBC footage of the pretty young women looked so camera-ready the story immediately struck me as a TV series fishing expedition. As they stood on a Ukranian church stage in sparkle tops and neatly curled hair, with Rev. Larson egging them on to show off some martial arts moves before getting down to demon casting, the scene looked like a Kirk Cameron-authored Christian take on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” with the fashion sense of “Pretty Little Liars.” Then a quick Google search revealed that Rev. Larson had a reality show in development a couple years back — a relevant tidbit the BBC failed to mention.

Moreover, this isn’t the first time the teens have made headlines. The Daily Mail reported on them in 2011, only that time they were a group fierce fivesome (no word on what’s since happened to the other two girls) who were helping fill a global “shortage” of exorcists. “We have found that our female, teenage exorcists are particularly effective at curing the possessed,” Rev. Larson told the newspaper. Clearly, they’re also particularly effective at generating media attention (and skeptical blog posts!).

Television deals aside, Rev. Larson, as noted in How Exorcism Works, has parlayed exorcism into a profitable business — a venture no doubt buoyed these days by the presence of the teen exorcist trio:

A particularly popular exorcism ministry in the United States, Bob Larson Ministries, televises its weekly conferences. In these mass exorcisms, for which large groups can receive a “family rate” on tickets, Mr. Larson exorcises the demons of an auditorium full of people. Financial donations on top of the ticket price are not required for his services, but they are welcome.

Larson’s exorcism enterprise also stays afloat because beliefs in demonic possession persists among many people around the world (for the record myself not included). Exorcism rites are most commonly associated with the Catholic Church, and in a recent LiveScience article, Benjamin Radford reports that the Vatican updated its exorcism guidelines, which were originally penned in 1614, not too long ago in 1999. And in case you were wondering, the signs of demonic possession “include superhuman strength, aversion to holy water, and the ability to speak in unknown languages.” Oh, and excessive masturbation. Outside of the Catholic Church, there are hundreds “self-styled exorcists around the world,” including the young women who rely more on church attendees “manifesting” signs of demonic possession rather than a following some sort of demonology rubric, especially since they believe that evil is everywhere, thanks in part to supernatural series like Harry Potter and Twilight.

Though the BBC highlighted the teens’ international exorcising itinerary, they could probably drum up as much work stateside. Fordham University sociologist and author of “American Exorcist” Michael Cuneo writes that “Exorcism is more readily available today in the United States than perhaps ever before.” ABC News even reported that exorcism is “thriving” in the U.S., and Cuneo attributed the growth of exorcism rites to the popularity of the 1973 horror classic “The Exorcist,” which is a compelling side note to the story of these teen exorcists considering the film’s underlying gender politics. Over at History Today, Nick Cull observes:

…The Exorcist plays on the guilt of women moving into the work-place and ‘usurping the masculine role’. To this end, the mother is given a male name: Chris. The events that follow beg to be read as a punishment for nothing more than being a woman of her time.

In re-working the Mount Rainier case for 1970s America, Blatty altered the gender of the possessed child. In so doing he moved his story into the typical territory of the horror genre: the female body. From Regan’s body flows a stream of obscene words, actions, deeds and copious fluids of various hues and textures. Is this the male fear of the castrating female re-animated for the era of Women’s Liberation?

A quote from lead teen exorcist and Rev. Larson’s daughter, Brynne, simultaneously suggests a reversal of that earlier revulsion for the working woman intertwined with archaic Biblical gender roles: “I want to one day get married and have children, for God says in the Bible that we should marry. But while there are people that need exorcisms, people who need help – that is all I’m interested in.”

But as long as the exorcists are peddling for headlines, the lovely 18-year-old might want to reconsider whether demonology and homemaking are really at odds because “Exorcist Mom” is a reality blockbuster waiting to happen.

Filed under: Stuff Mom Never Told You Tagged: catholic church, demons, evangelism, exorcism, religioun, The Exorcist
29 Oct 17:33


29 Oct 17:09

Whispering With Your Fingertips

by catcat

Researchers of Disney Research in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania has presented a magic show of whispering with fingertips at the ...Continue Reading
29 Oct 16:52

Taken from Thames & Hudson’s new book Heavenly Bodies:...

08 Oct 11:03

Where Blackened Teeth Were Beautiful

by Cristen Conger
A Vietnamese woman with intentionally blackened teeth.(Flickr/HERRUWE)

A Vietnamese woman with intentionally blackened teeth.(Flickr/HERRUWE)

In 1873, the empress of Japan made a radical beauty statement, appearing in public with white teeth. For centuries, tooth blackening, known as ohaguro, signified wealth and sexual maturity especially for women in Japanese society, and they would drink an iron-based black dye tempered with cinnamon and other aromatic spices to achieve the lacquered look. But as part of the Japanese government’s initiative to modernize the formerly secluded island nation in the late 19th century, it banned ohaguro in 1870, and the sight of the empress with pearly whites rather than pearly blacks not only demonstrated dental solidarity with the law, but also persuaded Japanese women to follow suit, and by the 1910s, tooth blackening was a rare sight in urban areas.

Although the origin of ohaguro is unknown, its meaning is rich with both practical and symbolic purpose. For one thing, blackened teeth generally held up against decay better than untreated teeth. A 2006 study of tooth blackening among older Kammu women in Laos and Vietnam further suggests that it could help ward off sickness, as it found that soot from certain nuts and wood they applied to their teeth were resistant to certain strains of streptococcus bacteria.

The preference for darkened smiles also reflected women’s societal submission to men. Beauty scholar Victoria Sherrow, for instance, notes that ohaguro “was primarily a means to hide a woman’s mouth expressions, something that was also achieved by graceful movements of the hand or a fan.” In a fascinating post on tooth blackening in Southeast Asia at The Gloss, Erin L. Thompson, similarly connects ohaguro to “the cultural practice, still widespread in Asia, of women holding their hands in front of their mouths while laughing.”

Regardless of gender, bright white teeth simply were considered inhuman, evocative instead of demons and dogs. Thompson explains:

During the height of Japan’s teeth blackening phase, which faded out in the mid-19th century, seeing someone’s white teeth was compared with seeing someone’s bones or seeing a mouthful of mealworms…Similarly, in Vietnam, white teeth were associated with wild animals, savage people, and underworld demons. These associations led women to blacken their teeth, disguising this reminder of evil savagery.

Nor was tooth blackening confined to Japan. Thompson’s research located it in “Micronesia, Melanesia, in Southeast Asia from Sumatra to Timor, and from Malaysia to China and northwest India as well as Japan and Taiwan,” and Sherrow found a South American tribe that chewed a particular tree bark for its tooth-inking effects. Even today, tooth blackening still exists in some rural communities in Vietnam, though, as with Japan, Western influence largely scrubbed it out in the early 20th century.

Filed under: Stuff Mom Never Told You Tagged: Beauty, body modification, Japan, teeth, tooth blackening
27 Sep 07:43

moshita: Joseph Carey Merrick (5 August 1862 – 11 April 1890),...

by inventiveplankton

the Elephant Man | posted by

the Elephant Man | posted by

the Elephant Man | posted by


Joseph Carey Merrick (5 August 1862 – 11 April 1890), sometimes incorrectly referred to as John Merrick, was an English man with severe deformities who was exhibited as a human curiosity named the Elephant Man. He became well known in London society after he went to live at the London hospital. Merrick was born in Leicester, Leicestershire and began to develop abnormally during the first few years of his life. His skin appeared thick and lumpy, he developed an enlargement of his lips, and a bony lump grew on his forehead. One of his arms and both feet became enlarged and at some point during his childhood he fell and damaged his hip, resulting in permanent lameness.

The exact cause of Merrick’s deformities is unclear. The dominant theory throughout much of the 20th century was that Merrick suffered from Neurofibromatosis type I. In 1986, a new theory emerged that he had Proteus Syndrome. In 2001 it was proposed that Merrick had suffered from a combination of neurofibromatosis type I and Proteus syndrome. DNA tests conducted on his hair and bones have proven inconclusive.

26 Sep 05:12

My dear little grandfather

by Shaun Usher

Marcel Proust was undoubtedly a gifted author, known largely for his classic multi-volume novel, In Search of Lost Time, a mammoth piece of work believed by some to be one of the greatest books ever written. More importantly, he was also, it is said, obsessed with masturbation. As a teenager this caused problems for his family, not least his father, a professor of hygiene, who like many of the day believed that such a worrying habit could cause homosexuality if left unchecked. And so, in May of 1888, in an effort to cure him of this "problem" having recently walked in on him "on the job," Dr. Proust gave his 16-year-old son 10 francs and sent him off to a local brothel. As evidenced by the following letter to his grandfather, and possibly due to the fact that Marcel was in fact homosexual, the visit didn't go to plan.

(Letter and translation kindly supplied by Fabien Bonnet—huge thanks to Larst Onovich; Image above: Marcel Proust at 16, some months before he wrote this letter, via.)


18 May 1888

Thursday evening.

My dear little grandfather,

I appeal to your kindness for the sum of 13 francs that I wished to ask Mr. Nathan for, but which Mama prefers I request from you. Here is why. I so needed to see if a woman could stop my awful masturbation habit that Papa gave me 10 francs to go to a brothel. But first, in my agitation, I broke a chamber pot: 3 francs; then, still agitated, I was unable to screw. So here I am, back to square one, waiting more and more as hours pass for 10 francs to relieve myself, plus 3 francs for the pot. But I dare not ask Papa for more money so soon and so I hoped you could come to my aid in a circumstance which, as you know, is not merely exceptional but also unique. It cannot happen twice in one lifetime that a person is too flustered to screw.

I kiss you a thousand times and dare to thank you in advance.

I will be home tomorrow morning at 11am. If you are moved by my situation and can answer my prayers, I will hopefully find you with the amount. Regardless, thank you for your decision which I know will come from a place of friendship.


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26 Sep 03:58

A book is a sneeze

by Shaun Usher

In September of 1952,  a few weeks before the publication of Charlotte's Webthe now-classic tale of a pig, Wilbur, who becomes friends with a heroic spider named Charlotte—its author, E. B. White, was asked to explain why he wrote the book by his editor at Harper & Row, Ursula Nordstrom. On the 29th of that month, White responded with the following typewritten letter and explanation, both of which have been kindly supplied to Letters of Note by HarperCollins.

Transcript follows.


29 Sept

Dear Ursula:

Thanks for your dandy letter and for the book. If I ever get time I'm going to read the book. I think it looks very nice and I agree with you that the endpaper is too bright. But on the other hand, I'm not sure that anybody thinks about endpaper except publishers, and probably not more than 1800 people in the United States have ever heard the word "endpaper", and they are all Stevenson people.

Enclosed are some remarks that I hope will satisfy your Publicity Department.

Sorry to learn that Dr. Canby is revolted by spiders. Probably doesn't meet the right spiders. Did you know that Dr. Canby has a wife named "Lady"?




I have been asked to tell how I came to write "Charlotte's Web." Well, I like animals, and it would be odd if I failed to write about them. Animals are a weakness with me, and when I got a place in the country I was quite sure animals would appear, and they did.

A farm is a peculiar problem for a man who likes animals, because the fate of most livestock is that they are murdered by their benefactors. The creatures may live serenely but they end violently, and the odor of doom hangs about them always. I have kept several pigs, starting them in spring as weanlings and carrying trays to them all through summer and fall. The relationship bothered me. Day by day I became better acquainted with my pig, and he with me, and the fact that the whole adventure pointed toward an eventual piece of double-dealing on my part lent an eerie quality to the thing. I do not like to betray a person or a creature, and I tend to agree with Mr. E.M. Forster that in these times the duty of a man, above all else, is to be reliable. It used to be clear to me, slopping a pig, that as far as the pig was concerned I could not be counted on, and this, as I say, troubled me. Anyway, the theme of "Charlotte's Web" is that a pig shall be saved, and I have an idea that somewhere deep inside me there was a wish to that effect.

As for Charlotte herself, I had never paid much attention to spiders until a few years ago. Once you begin watching spiders, you haven't time for much else---the world is really loaded with them. I do not find them repulsive or revolting, any more than I find anything in nature repulsive or revolting, and I think it is too bad that children are often corrupted by their elders in this hate campaign. Spiders are skilful, amusing and useful. and only in rare instances has anybody ever come to grief because of a spider.

One cold October evening I was lucky enough to see Aranea Cavatica spin her egg sac and deposit her eggs. (I did not know her name at the time, but I admired her, and later Mr. Willis J. Gertsch of the American Museum of Natural History told me her name.) When I saw that she was fixing to become a mother, I got a stepladder and an extension light and had an excellent view of the whole business. A few days later, when it was time to return to New York, not wishing to part with my spider, I took a razor blade, cut the sac adrift from the underside of the shed roof, put spider and sac in a candy box, and carried them to town. I tossed the box on my dresser. Some weeks later I was surprised and pleased to find that Charlotte's daughters were emerging from the air holes in the cover of the box. They strung tiny lines from my comb to my brush, from my brush to my mirror, and from my mirror to my nail scissors. They were very busy and almost invisible, they were so small. We all lived together happily for a couple of weeks, and then somebody whose duty it was to dust my dresser balked, and I broke up the show.

At the present time, three of Charlotte's granddaughters are trapping at the foot of the stairs in my barn cellar, where the morning light, coming through the east window, illuminates their embroidery and makes it seem even more wonderful than it is.

I haven't told why I wrote the book, but I haven't told you why I sneeze, either. A book is a sneeze.


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24 Sep 06:17


by meagainstthem

 photo 5312013215_zps578a382d.gif

21 Sep 14:02

Dunkin' Donuts worker stops robbery -- with hot coffee

When a man tried to rob a Dunkin’ Donuts in Connecticut on Saturday night, an employee acted quickly and stopped him with the closest weapon available -- hot coffee.

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18 Sep 18:09

Area man brews own beer in gut

by Jason Kottke

A Texas man was getting drunk without drinking alcohol and his doctors think they figured out why: brewer's yeast in his in gut was brewing beer and making the man intoxicated.

The patient had an infection with Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Cordell says. So when he ate or drank a bunch of starch -- a bagel, pasta or even a soda -- the yeast fermented the sugars into ethanol, and he would get drunk. Essentially, he was brewing beer in his own gut. Cordell and McCarthy reported the case of "auto-brewery syndrome" a few months ago in the International Journal of Clinical Medicine.

Some clever entrepreneur will undoubtedly turn this syndrome into a product...the market opportunity for a pill that allows you to get drunk on spaghetti *and* be the owner/operator of your own microbrewery is too large to ignore. (via ★interesting)

Tags: food   medicine   science
29 Jun 19:03

odditiesoflife: Real Vintage Vampire Killing Kit A complete and...


Real Vintage Vampire Killing Kit

A complete and authentic vampire killing kit — made around 1800 and complete with stakes, mirrors, a gun with silver bullets, crosses, a Bible, holy water, candles and even garlic.  It was sold at an estate auction for $14,850 in 2008.

13 May 21:31

For The Ladies: Full Body Pillow With Breast Hole

comfybreasts-pillow-1.jpg This is the ComfyBreasts Relaxation System. It's a full body pillow with a hollowed out section to rest your breasts in and relieve pressure on them. Because remember ladies: a comfy tit is a happy tit. Also: a boob in the hand is worth over a dozen in the bush. The ComfyBreast pillow is currently a Kickstarter campaign and I read through the info they provided which had little to no scientific data to suggest a pillow with a boob hole is beneficial to a lady's knockers. But the pillow was tested on two different women, who had this to say:
Tester #1: "Thought it was a Dream Pillow - Very Comfy." and Tester #2: Said she could fall asleep easily, and actually almost forgot she had breasts.
"ACTUALLY ALMOST FORGOT SHE HAD BREASTS." Now that's a magical pillow. It's a shame they don't make a guy version because I'd be curious to know what it feels like to fall asleep without a penis. "So...a pillow with a hole to rest your pecker in? That sounds like a cheap love doll." I'm realizing that now. Hit the jump for a couple more shots of this year's must have Christmas gift.
10 May 03:24

Dog Owners Wearing Clothes Made From Their Pet’s Fur

by Tomas

If you’re torn between wearing fur and loving animals, the dispute has already been settled. The pictures by French photographer Erwan Fichou prove that you only have to love your pet long enough… to be able to wear it later! The dog owners in the photos below would pet their buddies so much that they could collect enough of their fur to spun it into yarn and knit a sweater from it.

We assure you that none of the wool-producers have been harmed in the making of the sweaters, and all of them pose happily with their owners. For those interested in this, there are even step-by-step manuals on knitting sweaters from your dog’s fur on Amazon.

What do you think? Would you wear the fur of your dog?


It’s not a joke, see Knitting With Dog Hair: Better A Sweater From A Dog You Know and Love Than From A Sheep You’ll Never Meet (via)

Dog Owners Wearing Clothes Made From Their Pet’s Fur originally appeared on Bored Panda on January 15, 2013.

  1. blow-up-doll-clothes-thumb45 Clothes Made From Used Blow-Up Dolls
  2. cd-portraits-against-piracy-thumb45 Musician Portraits Made Of Their Own CDs
  3. winter-light-festival-nabano-no-sato-japan-thumb45 Tunnel of Lights Made of Millions of LEDs in Japan
  4. new-reliquaries-thumb45 Religious Sites Made of Guns and Ammunition
10 May 02:50

Dear Diary: Cats Post Their Complaints

by Perry Michael Simon

sadcatzefrankZe Frank has done it again, and maybe it’s that I’m a cat owner, or maybe it’s that this is, indeed, very funny, but I particularly love this chronicling of diary entries by sad, angry, or perplexed cats. If you’ve ever tried to imagine what’s going through your cat’s mind, this will hit close to home. And hearing cats’ thoughts in Ze Frank’s customary near-monotone makes it especially demented.

Our cat, of course, has exactly the same thoughts. I’d show this to her, but she won’t do anything I ask her to do.


If you’re a cat owner, what do you think your cat’s thinking right now? Write your own Sad Cat Diary posts below….

07 May 23:00

A Trailer for “Ender’s Game”

by Perry Michael Simon

Here’s the long-awaited trailer for the movie adaptation of Ender’s Game, with the distinctive voice of Harrison Ford kicking things off and, well, if you’re a fan of the book and can’t wait until the movie hits theaters on November 1st, take a look. Is this what you hoped it’d look like? Is Asa Butterfield how you pictured Ender? What about Ben Kingsley’s face? Comments below, as always.

From the press release:

In the near future, a hostile alien race called the Formics have attacked Earth. If not for the legendary heroics of International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley), all would have been lost. In preparation for the next attack, the highly esteemed Colonel Hyrum Graff (Harrison Ford) and the International Military are training only the best young minds to find the future Mazer.

Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a shy but strategically brilliant boy, is recruited to join the elite. Arriving at Battle School, Ender quickly and easily masters increasingly difficult challenges and simulations, distinguishing himself and winning respect amongst his peers. Ender is soon ordained by Graff as the military’s next great hope, resulting in his promotion to Command School. Once there, he’s trained by Mazer Rackham himself to lead his fellow soldiers into an epic battle that will determine the future of Earth and save the human race.

Based on the best-selling, award winning novel, Ender’s Game is an epic adventure which stars Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, Ben Kingsley, Viola Davis, with Abigail Breslin and Harrison Ford.

In theaters nationwide November 1, 2013

And from Yahoo! Movies, the poster:


07 May 19:31

Decrease in Violent Crime Coincides With Reduced Stop-and-Frisks, Again

by Julia Dawidowicz
Decrease in Violent Crime Coincides With Reduced Stop-and-Frisks, Again

Great news! NYC has seen a decrease in violent crime during the first quarter of the year, with shootings and murders dropping by 24% and 40%, respectively. Incidentally, the number of Stop-and-Frisks carried out by the NYPD has also gone down significantly during this time period.

“From January 1 through March 31 of this year, the NYPD conducted 99,788 stop, question, and frisks,” Gothamist reports. “For the same time period in 2012 that number was 203,500, continuing a decline in the practice that began last year.”

Deductive reasoning might lead one to believe that this cut in Stop-and-Frisks might have something to do with recent policy changes requiring more thorough documentation by the police, or that high-profile Federal Court case questioning Stop-and-Frisk’s constitutionality, or all that criticism it’s received from media outlets and mayoral candidates alike; but the NYPD is sticking to their guns.

“Staffing and other factors, including training, have had a bearing on the number of stops,” chief NYPD spokesman Paul Browne stated. “But the bottom line is that the total number of stops in any given quarter reflects what the police officers on duty during that quarter observed.”

Last year, we noted a similar correlation between fewer stop-and frisks and reduced gun violence. Lots of weird coincidences going on, huh?

The post Decrease in Violent Crime Coincides With Reduced Stop-and-Frisks, Again appeared first on ANIMAL.

07 May 19:26

Historical Figures Transformed Into Modern Illustrations

by Katie Hosmer
William Shakespeare

A recent project commissioned by the UK's history TV channel Yesterday has artists transforming historical portraits into modern day interpretations. The series is meant to celebrate the station's new series, The Secret Life Of…, which is described as 14-part series that "lifts the lid on established and renowned superstars from history to reveal their secret lives."

The episodes will cover the lives of Henry VIII, Queen Elizabeth I, Marie Antionette, and others with a tongue-in-cheek approach that will have viewers laughing and learning at the same time. Over the course of three months, each artist worked closely with history experts, and specifically Dr. Suzannah Lipscomb, to ensure that their 21st century portraits portrayed accurate details. The modern interpretations allow viewers to gain a bit of insight and understanding into the culture of the past by comparing social norms like wardrobe, make-up, and backgrounds to today's world.

Marie Antoinette

Henry VIII

Admiral Lord Nelson

Elizabeth I

Yesterday website
via [Laughing Squid]

06 May 07:19

Recent work I’ve done

by Kirby

The video above was commissioned by Fight for the Future and Access.
Find out more and get involved at

This one was commissioned for The Future of Storytelling Conference.
I was provided with audio of a story by author and neuroeconomist Paul Zak and
produced the video in collaboration with animator Henrique Barone.


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05 May 07:02

Principal fires security guards to hire art teachers — and transforms elementary school

by The Daily Nightly
By Katy Tur, Correspondent, NBC NewsROXBURY, Mass. — The community of Roxbury had high hopes for its newest public school back in 2003. There were art studios, a dance room, even a theater equipped with cushy seating.A pilot school for grades K-8, Orchard Gardens was built on grand expectations.But the dream of a school founded in the arts, a school that would give back to the community as it bett...