March 31, 2013

Gnome gentrification

"Pam Madigan walked deliberately among the Golden Gate Park Concourse’s grove of knotted old trees as if searching for a pot of gold -- ignoring the attractions of the nearby DeYoung Museum and Academy of Sciences.

"With her infant son cradled in her arms, her eyes darted to the base of a particular elm where a tiny wooden door covered a large knot hole. She summoned her group of friends and children, pointing to the tiny door which was not more than a foot tall."

Posted by the Flea at 09:48 AM

The lack of the lack of knowledge

"At a roundtable event at GDC 2013, a roomful of video game writers shared the tips and techniques that have helped them navigate some of the more precarious positions in their careers."

Antony Johnston, who wrote ZombiU and Binary Domain, characterized the situation as a perceived "lack of authority" on behalf of industry writers.

"In my experience, the problems isn't just that people don't understand how a story works, but they think they do," Johnston said. "It's not just the lack of knowledge. It's the lack of the lack of knowledge."
Posted by the Flea at 09:47 AM

Lessons learned

"When advertising agencies tell you they want something (higher quality content, long-form content, specific demographics, lean-back content, stuff that looks like tv) it’s not our job to attempt to deliver those things. In a world where the user really does get to choose, the content created to satisfy the needs and wants of viewers (not advertisers) will always reign supreme (thankfully)."

Posted by the Flea at 09:44 AM

Ada Habershon & Charles Gabriel - Will The Circle Be Unbroken (Choral Version)

"'Will the Circle Be Unbroken?' is a popular Christian hymn written by Ada R. Habershon with music by Charles H. Gabriel."

These versions appear in the BioShock Infinite soundtrack. The second features vocals by Courtnee Draper with Troy Baker on guitar.

There are loved ones in the glory
Whose dear forms you often miss.
When you close your earthly story,
Will you join them in their bliss?

Will the circle be unbroken
By and by, by and by?
Is a better home awaiting
In the sky, in the sky?

In the joyous days of childhood
Oft they told of wondrous love
Pointed to the dying Saviour;
Now they dwell with Him above.


You remember songs of heaven
Which you sang with childish voice.
Do you love the hymns they taught you,
Or are songs of earth your choice?


You can picture happy gath'rings
Round the fireside long ago,
And you think of tearful partings
When they left you here below.


One by one their seats were emptied.
One by one they went away.
Now the family is parted.
Will it be complete one day?


Posted by the Flea at 09:42 AM

March 30, 2013

Uncommon Knowledge - In Defense of WWII (2008)

Hoover Institution research fellow Peter Robinson interviews Victor Davis Hanson and Christopher Hitchens on the subject of World War II revisionist histories, specifically Patrick J. Buchanan's Churchill, Hitler, and The Unnecessary War and Niall Ferguson's The War of the World.

They counter the essential claims in Buchanan’s book that Britain’s guarantee to protect Poland in the event of a German invasion made the war inevitable; that the Holocaust was a consequence of the war and that, without it, the Holocaust may not have occurred; and that Germany invaded Russia only because Britain under Churchill was determined to partner with Russia against Germany. Finally they address two claims made by author Niall Ferguson that '[the Allies] adopted the most brutal tactics of those they were fighting' and that the principal beneficiary of the Second World War was Stalin’s Soviet Union."
Posted by the Flea at 09:48 AM

John Butler Trio - Ocean

Posted by the Flea at 09:42 AM

March 29, 2013

Tutankhamun's Fireball (2006)

"In 1996 in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Italian mineralogist Vincenzo de Michele spotted an unusual yellow-green gem in the middle of one of Tutankhamun's necklaces. The jewel was tested and found to be glass, but intriguingly it is older than the earliest Egyptian civilisation.

"Working with Egyptian geologist Aly Barakat, they traced its origins to unexplained chunks of glass found scattered in the sand in a remote region of the Sahara Desert. But the glass is itself a scientific enigma. How did it get to be there and who or what made it?"

Posted by the Flea at 08:07 AM


"Rick Moody has one of the most interesting tattoos because it’s part of Shelley Jackson’s Skin project, a 2095-word story published exclusively in tattoos, one word each on as many willing volunteers, so it can never be read in its proper order, but just exists, pulsing, out in the world at all times."

Posted by the Flea at 08:04 AM

Fractal arts

"Fractal art is created by calculating fractal objects and representing the calculation results as still images, animations, music, or other media."

Posted by the Flea at 08:03 AM

Human thought for world progress

A selection of Soviet propaganda posters, mostly from the 1980s and 1990s.

Posted by the Flea at 08:02 AM

Lana Del Rey - Chelsea Hotel No 2

The video shows a straightforward, but lovely/haunting cover of Leonard Cohen's song about his brief affair with Janis Joplin—"Chelsea Hotel #2" from his 1974 album New Skin for the Old Ceremony (hat tip to Agent Bedhead).

Posted by the Flea at 08:01 AM

March 28, 2013

Slavoj Zizek - The Wire or the clash of civilisations in one country (2012)

Posted by the Flea at 03:48 PM

Henry Rollins - The Iron

"It took me years to fully appreciate the value of the lessons I have learned from the Iron. I used to think that it was my adversary, that I was trying to lift that which does not want to be lifted. I was wrong. When the Iron doesn't want to come off the mat, it's the kindest thing it can do for you. If it flew up and went through the ceiling, it wouldn't teach you anything. That's the way the Iron talks to you. It tells you that the material you work with is that which you will come to resemble. That which you work against will always work against you."

Posted by the Flea at 03:47 PM

Elf counsel

"It could be the year for discovering notorious monarchs."

Just weeks after remains found under a car park were confirmed as Richard III, archaeologists now believe they may just have stumbled on Alfred the Great.

Amid great secrecy, a team exhumed an unmarked grave at a more fitting location for a Royal burial - a churchyard in Winchester named in ancient documents as his burial place. After a delicate 10-hour operation on Monday, human skeletal remains were unearthed in the churchyard of St Bartholomew’s in the Hyde area of the city, and taken for storage at an undisclosed location.
Posted by the Flea at 03:44 PM

Stimming - November Morning

Posted by the Flea at 03:42 PM

March 27, 2013

A Tudor Feast (2006)

Posted by the Flea at 09:48 AM

Materialism is an explanation for a world we don’t live in.

"The neo-Darwinian materialist account offers a picture of the world that is unrecognizable to us—a world without color or sound, and also a world without free will or consciousness or good and evil or selves or, when it comes to that, selflessness."

You don’t have to be a biblical fundamentalist or a young-earth creationist or an intelligent design enthusiast—I’m none of the above, for what it’s worth—to find Mind and Cosmos exhilarating. “For a long time I have found the materialist account of how we and our fellow organisms came to exist hard to believe,” [Thomas] Nagel writes. “It is prima facie highly implausible that life as we know it is the result of a sequence of physical accidents together with the mechanism of natural selection.” The prima facie impression, reinforced by common sense, should carry more weight than the clerisy gives it. I would like to defend the untutored reaction of incredulity to the reductionist neo-Darwinian account of the origin and evolution of life."
Posted by the Flea at 09:47 AM

Game changer

"Japanese scientists have found vast reserves of rare earth metals on the Pacific seabed that can be mined cheaply, a discovery that may break the Chinese monopoly on a crucial raw material needed in hi-tech industries and advanced weapons systems."

Posted by the Flea at 09:44 AM

Heiko Laux - Moved ( Ricardo Villalobos Remix)

Posted by the Flea at 09:42 AM

March 26, 2013

Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana

Digitizing the Vatican Library of eighty-two thousand manuscripts will take up to 45 petabytes of storage.

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

All these worlds are yours

Except Europa.

Jupiter's icy moon Europa is a prime target for future space missions as it harbours a buried ocean that could have the right conditions for life.

But attempts to land may face a major hazard: jagged "blades" of ice up to 10m long. A major US conference has heard the moon may have ideal conditions for icy spikes called "penitentes" to form.
Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM

Slavoj Zizek - Why be happy when you could be interesting?

Posted by the Flea at 08:43 AM

Klaus Schulze feat. Lisa Gerrard - Rheingold

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

March 25, 2013

Can't Wait to Meet you Neighbour

"Bullseye, Target's English Bull Terrier mascot sets off on journey across Canada in a motorcycle sidecar meeting friends along the way."

Not a promotional post. I just can't wait for Target.

Posted by the Flea at 09:48 AM

Who really lives at One Hyde Park?

"Up until the 18th century, Knightsbridge, which borders genteel Kensington, was a lawless zone roamed by predatory monks and assorted cutthroats. It didn’t come of age until the Victorian building boom, which left a charming legacy of mostly large and beautiful Victorian houses, with their trademark white or cream paint, black iron railings, high ceilings, and short, elegant stone steps up to the front door.

"This will not be the impression a visitor now gets as he emerges from the Knightsbridge subway station’s south exit."

Posted by the Flea at 09:47 AM

Tour Odéon

"Tour Odéon, with its 70 super-sized flats, is the first new skyscraper to have been built in Monaco since the 1980s."

Posted by the Flea at 09:44 AM

Corrosive concrete

"Concrete made with unprocessed sea sand has been found in at least 15 buildings under construction in Shenzhen – including what will be China's tallest building when completed – putting them at risk of collapse."

Posted by the Flea at 09:43 AM

Iggy Azalea - Work

Hat tip to Mr. Percifield.

G'day related: Who is Iggy Azalea?

Also: "Iggy Azalea talks exclusively to That Grape Juice about her new album, 'T.I', controlling her brand, and more."

Posted by the Flea at 09:42 AM

March 24, 2013

Tel Aviv Fashion Week - Anorexia and Aerial Attacks

"In 2013 Israel became the first country in the world to pass legislation banning 'underweight' models. Mere weeks before the law passed, the first Tel Aviv fashion week in 30 years featured typically waifish high-fashion models. Charlet caught a show by Italian giant Moschino just in time for the first rockets to rain down on Tel aviv from Gaza in over 20 years..."

Posted by the Flea at 10:28 AM

Radiolab - Dark Side of the Earth

"200 miles above Earth's surface, astronaut Dave Wolf -- rocketing through the blackness of Earth's shadow at 5 miles a second -- floated out of the Mir Space Station on his very first spacewalk. In this short, he describes the extremes of light and dark in space, relives a heart-pounding close call, and shares one of the most tranquil moments of his life."

Posted by the Flea at 10:27 AM

In Conversation: Timothy Olyphant and Walton Goggins

In Conversation: Timothy Olyphant and Walton Goggins from Olyfantastique on Vimeo.

Justified is a comedy, apparently (hat tip to Agent Bedhead).

Posted by the Flea at 10:24 AM

Nicolas Jaar - La Bohème (Nico Edt)

Posted by the Flea at 10:22 AM

March 23, 2013

Tolkien, myth and modernity

"Can someone please explain why technology in the universe of LOTR does not develop beyond the iron age?"

Because in Tolkien's mythology, technology represents evil and materialism in contrast to the goodness of nature and spirituality.

The One Ring didn't simply exist through magic; it was forged through craftsmanship, which is the most basic form of technology. Obviously, craftsmanship itself is not evil, but it is easily corrupted; it isn't itself evil, but too prone to evil to be considered neutral.

I don't know if you have read the Silmarillion, but this is why the Noldor, the most skilled among Elves, are the ones who suffer most from Melkor's deceit. It is why Dwarves and Men are more easily corrupted than Elves, Tolkien's ideal race. Khazad-dum unleashed the Balrog because the Dwarves delved too deep in their search for more metals and gems, substances of little worth without technology to shape them. Númenór fell when Men's technology advanced enough for them to wage war against Valinor, and they were defeated by the Valar--that is, powers of nature.

What marks Saruman's descent into wickedness? That he destroys Fangorn to fuel his machinery, and he uses his technology to breed the Uruk-hai. The Spoiling of the Shire is its industrialization. Even the palantiri work some evil. So the reason that technology didn't advance between the end of the Second Age and the end of the Third is that Middle-Earth is naturally good. There was no evil force powerful enough to drive innovation, so it remained as it was. If the Fellowship had failed, technology would have advanced under Sauron's rule.

EDIT: For anyone interested, my response draws heavily from Patrick Curry's Defending Middle-Earth: Tolkien, Myth and Modernity.
Posted by the Flea at 08:07 AM

Cultural Evolution of Pants II

"The Romans eventually realized that they had to acquire reasonably efficient cavalry. At first, cavalry was an auxiliary force, manned by non-Roman citizens. During the Empire (from the first century AD on), the Romans began to employ cavalry more effectively. But riding a horse while wearing a tunic is not very comfortable. So Roman cavalrymen started wearing pants, or braccae as they called them (borrowing a Celtic term; this word eventually became ‘breeches’). After the collapse of the Roman Empire, Europe fell under the rule of warriors who fought from the horseback – the knights (this transition actually occurred during the Carolingian times, roughly eighth century AD). So wearing pants became associated with high-status men, and gradually spread to other males. By the way, I am talking here about the Mediterranean cultures. In northern Europe, of course, pants were worn by both Celtic and Germanic people at least from the Iron Age on."

Posted by the Flea at 08:04 AM

Winklepickers of yesteryear

Wearing poulaines in the late Middle Ages was a symbol of one's social class.

Posted by the Flea at 08:03 AM

Alt-J - Full Performance (Live on KEXP)

Posted by the Flea at 08:02 AM

March 22, 2013

Thou art thyself a star

Frieda Harris painting.jpg

If anyone has a spare $100k lying about, please do keep me in mind. This Frieda Harris would be ideal for the study in my hypothetical mansion flat.

Rare Oil British Abstract Painting Lady Frieda Harris Tarot Card Designer

Oil on canvas
42" x 39"

[Marguerite] Frieda Harris (born 1877 London, England; died 11 May 1962 Srinagar, India) was an artist, an occult magician, and, after she met him at age 60, an associate and friend of the author and occultist Aleister Crowley. She is best known for her artistic design of Crowley's Thoth tarot deck and the resulting philosophical input towards its final form.
Posted by the Flea at 08:58 AM

Alderney Crystal

"A rough, whitish block recovered from an Elizabethan shipwreck may be a sunstone, the fabled crystal believed by some to have helped Vikings and other medieval seafarers navigate the high seas, researchers say."

Posted by the Flea at 08:57 AM


With a few dozen graphical mods.

Posted by the Flea at 08:54 AM

Wake Owl - Gold (Noah Hyde & Magic Sword Remix)

Posted by the Flea at 08:52 AM

March 21, 2013

Radio Amina (2011)

"Radio Amina tells the story of Amina Dibir, a 12 year old street hawker from Kano, Nigeria and her imaginary radio show where she gets to say all of the things she wishes she could in real life.

"Part documentary, part narrative, this beautifully shot film explores the wishes and desires of a girl who has scant opportunity to tell anyone about her hopes for the future and her frustrations at the lack of opportunities in her life. Funny and touching Radio Amina is an intimate look at the discrepancies between the hopes of a young girl from northern Nigeria and her reality.

"The film was made for Girl Hub and to find out more about some of the issues at the heart of the film please go to: girlhub.org"

Posted by the Flea at 09:08 PM


Thin privilege in Les Miserables.

Posted by the Flea at 09:07 PM

And other Buffy The Vampire Slayer trivia

Mutant Enemy was the name of Joss Whedon's first typewriter.

Posted by the Flea at 09:04 PM

Simone Boyce interviews George R.R. Martin

Posted by the Flea at 09:03 PM

Brightblack Morning Light - Own Time Woodland Song

Posted by the Flea at 09:02 PM

March 20, 2013

How to Fly the B-26 Airplane (1944)

"The Martin B-26 bomber was popularly known as the Marauder. This wartime training film shows how to handle the versatile craft, with Hollywood actor Don Porter playing the part of the pilot."

Posted by the Flea at 09:48 AM


"We all understand that action movies are cheesy escapism. After all, could one commando really take out a whole compound full of bad guys?

"Actually, yes."

Posted by the Flea at 09:47 AM

Hitchhikers and freight train hoppers

"Mike Brodie first began photographing in 2004 when he was given a Polaroid camera. Working under the moniker, The Polaroid Kidd, Brodie spent the next four years circumambulating the U.S. amassing an archive of photographs that would go on to make up one of the few, true collections of American travel photography."

Hat tip to Mr. Percifield.

Posted by the Flea at 09:44 AM

Norwegian Arms - The Iceman/Kiva Ikva

Posted by the Flea at 09:42 AM

March 19, 2013

From Shodan, to Big Daddy, to Elizabeth: The Evolution of AI Companions


"Irrational Games co-founder and BioShock creator Ken Levine recently gave a British Academy of Film and Televison Arts (BAFTA) presentation about AI companions and how BioShock Infinite developers gave Elizabeth personality.

'From Shodan, to Big Daddy, to Elizabeth: The Evolution of AI Companions,' which you can watch above, features Levine's 40-minute talk and gameplay from BioShock Infinite. Levine says that like BioShock's Big Daddy, Elizabeth was the game's most requested cut feature."

Hat tip to Manaf.

Posted by the Flea at 08:04 AM

Robust American wildlife

"Buffon’s theory of American degeneracy was still on Jefferson’s mind years later, when, as president, he sent Lewis and Clark to explore the American West—partly to see if they could turn up a living mammoth."

Caught up in the effort to prove the vitality of the American experiment, Thomas Jefferson had convinced himself by the 1780s that the mammoth still lived. He gave credence to an Indian legend about a mammoth that shook off lightning bolts, bounding away over the Ohio River to somewhere beyond the Great Lakes. “In the present interior of our continent,” Jefferson wrote, “there is surely space and range enough for elephants and lions.” He imagined this pair of American titans roaming the Great Plains.
Posted by the Flea at 08:03 AM

Son House - Got A Letter This Morning

Posted by the Flea at 08:01 AM

March 18, 2013

Kingdom of Klinkistan

What is the Kingdom of Klinkistan? (via Blazing Cat Fur)

Posted by the Flea at 08:28 AM

You say it's your birthday?

"I decided that if Facebook was going to bombard me with fake birthday wishes, I was going to bombard Facebook with fake birthdays."

Posted by the Flea at 08:27 AM


"The creators of MirrorMoon want you to get lost. Lost and lonely and very curious."

Posted by the Flea at 08:24 AM

Unison - Heartcore

Posted by the Flea at 08:22 AM

March 17, 2013

Vice - Columbia Moda 2012

"VICE heads to Colombia for a week of fashion, cocaine and plastic surgery."

Formerly the old stomping ground of Pablo Escobar, the city is now trying to throw off its powdery legacy and push fashion up the noses of the world. Charlet, your host, goes to two rival fashion weeks running simultaneously and is presented with two very different ideas about what Colombian beauty is.
Posted by the Flea at 10:08 AM

Fat in Japan

You are breaking the law.

Japanese lawmakers last year set a maximum waistline size for anyone age 40 and older: 85 centimeters (33.5 inches) for men and 90 centimeters (35.4 inches) for women.
Under Japan’s health care coverage, companies administer check-ups to employees once a year. Those who fail to meet the waistline requirement must undergo counseling. If companies do not reduce the number of overweight employees by 10 percent by 2012 and 25 percent by 2015, they could be required to pay more money into a health care program for the elderly. An estimated 56 million Japanese will have their waists measured this year.
Posted by the Flea at 10:04 AM

Bianca Atzei feat. Modà - La Gelosia

Posted by the Flea at 10:01 AM

March 16, 2013

Alain De Botton - Nietzsche on Hardship (2000)

"This six part series on philosophy is presented by popular British philosopher Alain de Botton, featuring six thinkers who have influenced history, and their ideas about the pursuit of the happy life.

"Episode 6: Nietzsche on Hardship - British philosopher Alain De Botton explores Friedrich Nietzsche's (1844-1900) dictum that any worthwhile achievements in life come from the experience of overcoming hardship. For him, any existence that is too comfortable is worthless, as are the twin refugees of drink or religion."

Posted by the Flea at 07:58 AM

Good Vibrations Storage Unit

"In his second year working with Fratelli Boffi, Ferruccio Laviani has created yet another fanciful world from the depths of his prolific imagination. ... blending the harmony and magniloquence of the classical with the charm and allure of the contemporary."

Posted by the Flea at 07:57 AM

School of Thrones - Episode 1: Prom Night Is Coming

Posted by the Flea at 07:54 AM

Human League - The Lebanon

Posted by the Flea at 07:52 AM

March 15, 2013

The Dark Age Renaissance of Northern Europe - Part 4 (2012)

"The Dark Ages have been misunderstood. History has identified the period following the fall of the Roman Empire with a descent into barbarism - a terrible time when civilisation stopped.

"Waldemar Januszczak disagrees. In this four-part series he argues that the Dark Ages were a time of great artistic achievement, with new ideas and religions provoking new artistic adventures. He embarks on a fascinating trip across Europe, Africa and Asia, visits the world's most famous collections and discovers hidden artistic gems, all to prove that the Dark Ages were actually an 'Age of Light'.

"In the final episode, Waldemar looks towards the north of Europe. The Carolingians saw themselves as successors to Rome, reflected in their art. Elsewhere, the Vikings were constructing long ships with intricate decoration and marking their territory with powerful rune stones. And on the British Isles, the Irish and Anglo-Saxons were creating unique works of manuscript illumination and remarkable jewellery."

Posted by the Flea at 07:58 AM

22 Rules of Storytelling

"Former Pixar storyboard artist Emma Coats tweeted a number of valuable storytelling rules during her time at the animation studio."

Posted by the Flea at 07:57 AM

What It's Like To Read the Game of Thrones Books

"All the violence, intrigue, and random boobies of the Game of Thrones franchise, boiled into a two-minute animation. Try not to get too attached to any of your favorite characters... "

Hat tip to Mr. Ardolino.

Posted by the Flea at 07:54 AM

Savina Yannatou - A Fairy Love Story

Posted by the Flea at 07:52 AM

March 14, 2013

One way or another

A Veronica Mars movie project raised two-million dollars (and counting) in four hours on Kickstarter.

Posted by the Flea at 06:37 AM

Reading list

George R.R. Martin recommends some books for fans who are tired of waiting for the next book in the A Song of Ice and Fire series to come out.

Here are some of the authors he recommends. The first part of the list is for those who haven't tackled the classic fantasy books yet. The second third is for those who have already consumed the fantasy canon, and are looking for contemporaries. The last portion is a mix of historical fiction and other genres.
Posted by the Flea at 06:34 AM

March 13, 2013

Vice - Cambodia Fashion Week 2012

The Khmer Riche!

Charlet arrives in Phnom Penh and heads to the first show of Cambodia's innagural fashion week, where some models hit the runway "acting stoned." It's followed (naturally) by a tranny-zombie after party. Charlet then meets Phen Chou, a factory worker who was beaten by the police when she led protests for garment factory workers' rights.
Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

The Why Knot?

Ties a tie in a mere 562 steps.

Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM


Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

Hipster Image - Make Her Mine

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

March 12, 2013

Inside The Actors Studio - Ricky Gervais

Posted by the Flea at 08:58 AM

Seneca, On Favours

"Our ancestors complained about it, so do we, so will our descendants — the overthrow of morals, the reign of wickedness, the decline of human behaviour and collapse of any feeling for what is right. Yet all this remains and will remain where it was — with a slight movement in one direction or the other, like the waves which the tide, as it rises, lifts further inland and constrains, as it ebbs, to the inner line of the shore.

"At one moment, adultery will be more prevalent than other misbehaviour, as chastity kicks over the traces. At another, there will be a rage for dinner-parties and that most repulsive source of ruin to an estate, the kitchen. Or else you will find excess in adorning the body and a concern for personal apperance that exhibits a deformity of mind.

"At yet another time, an ill-regulated freedom will break out into impudent boldness. Or there will be a movement towards cruelty in individuals and peoples and the profanation, in the madness of civil war, of all that is holy and sacred.

"Or again, drunkenness may at times be held in honour, with a larger capacity than anyone else’s for wine counting as a virtue. Vices never stay in one place waiting for you. They are constantly on the move, in turbulent disagreement with each other. One thing, however, will always be the same, the verdict that we have to pass on ourselves: we are bad, we have been bad; and, I hate to add, we will go on being bad. There will always be murderers, tyrants, robbers, adulterers, plunderers, temple-thieves, traitors."

Posted by the Flea at 08:57 AM

Capsule - I'm Feeling You

Capsule... live!

Posted by the Flea at 08:53 AM

March 11, 2013

Demeter Zombie

Demeter Zombie.jpg

"Zombie for Him is a combination of dried leaves, mushrooms, mildew, moss and earth. Zombie for Her is described as a slightly lighter version of the Men's fragrance with a 'touch of Dregs from the bottom of the wine barrel for that feminine touch.'"

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

The Matrix is a system, Neo

"A Danish telly channel has been forced to apologise for using a screenshot of Assassin's Creed as a backdrop for a news report about the war-torn country of Syria. Apparently one of the telly channel's employees found the image online and thought it was a photo of Damascus' skyline."

Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM

Quite unrelated to the industrial psychology of a proletariat

Utopian sketches and plans by Soviet avant-garde architect Ivan Leonidov.

Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

Game of Thrones - Inner Circle

"A round-table discussion led by D.B. Weiss and David Benioff featuring Kit Harington, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Michelle Fairley and Liam Cunningham, who each answer questions relevant to their characters' experiences in season two."

Posted by the Flea at 08:43 AM

Gyuto Monks - Yamantaka Puja

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

March 10, 2013

Fäviken Magasinet - Into the Wild

"This remarkable restaurant thrives off its own isolation, serving food according to the seasons and attracting only the most adventurous customers."

A journey in space-time: Specializing in retro-innovative locavore "real food" sourced locally and cycllically, Fäviken Magasinet is number 34 on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2012 list.

This is “rektún mat och driikk” – real food and beverage, in the very local idiom. We’re far north, close to the Artic circle, and it’s difficult to imagine a setting more exotic than this: red wooden buildings framed by snowy mountains in mid-summer and buried in white from October onwards. The dining room has no more than fourteen seats, limited by the number of beds in the magnificent adjoining hotel, reminiscent of Vladimir Putin’s luxurious hunting datja, bear skins and all.

Dinner is served in the dining room upstairs. Granny’s baking tray, leaning against the wall, retains the antique yeast culture in its wood grain, which of course makes for unforgettably sumptuous sourdough bread. First off is the celebrated scallop: cooked over an open fire of juniper branches and birch coal, it is served on the shell, lying in its dense juices, to be eaten with the fingers and then slurped. A series of local delicacies follow, such as a steamed char from neighbouring Kallsjön, atop a salad of mushrooms, one of which is Matsutake, much coveted by the Japanese and picked in the surrounding forests.

Magnus Nilsson: "We do things as they have always been done at Jämtland’s mountain farms. We follow seasonal variations and existing traditions. We live with the community. During the summer and autumn, at the peak of each ingredient’s ripeness, we harvest what grows on our land and refine it using the methods that we have discovered from our rich traditions, or which we have found through our own search for quality."

Posted by the Flea at 09:28 AM

He say you Brade Runner

Tell him I'm eating.

Google Glass won't be available to consumers for months, but there's at least one Seattle bar where the eyewear will not be welcome.

The 5 Point, a self-described dive bar in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood, posted a notice to its Facebook page this week telling Glass Explorers looking to grab a pint that they will need to remove their $1,500 spectacles.
Posted by the Flea at 09:27 AM

There can be only one

"There is a video bouncing around the web these days called 'The Strangest Coincidence Ever Recorded?' It tells the story of a ship which sank in the Menai Strait off the coast of Wales on December 5, 1664. All 81 passengers died, except one. His name was Hugh Williams. Then on December 5th, 1785 another ship with 60 aboard sank in the Menai Strait. The only survivor – a man named Hugh Williams. In 1820 on December 5th, a third vessel sank in the Menai Strait. All 25 abaord were drowned except, you guessed it, a man named Hugh Williams.

"An amazing tale, but is it history or just a an oft retold sea story? It could easily be a bit of each."

Posted by the Flea at 09:23 AM

Kitten - Chinatown

Posted by the Flea at 09:22 AM

March 09, 2013

Deidi von Schaewen - GlassLab (2012)

"GlassLab offers designers unprecedented access to molten glass. In public design performances or private sessions, designers and glassmakers collaborate, rapidly prototyping concepts and using the immediacy of hot glass as a catalyst for innovation.

"This film by Deidi von Schaewen documents GlassLab design sessions at Design Miami, Miami, Florida, 2007--2008 and at the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, Germany, 2010--2011."

Hat tip to Alexei.

Posted by the Flea at 08:49 AM


McDonald's Chicken McNuggets come in four specific shapes.

McNuggets are formed, not ground. There are 4 shapes that are pressed out with a rolling cookie cutter: boot, bow-tie, ball and bell. The reason they are all standard in shape and size is to ensure consistency in all McDonald’s restaurants. This guarantees both food safety (standard cooking times in restaurants) and portion control.
Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM

The Escolar Identity

Fifty-nine percent of "tuna" sold in the United States is not tuna.

Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

Mattie Roberts - What 300 calories looks like

Posted by the Flea at 08:43 AM

Ludovico Einaudi - Life

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

March 08, 2013

Valgeir Sigurðsson - Draumalandið (Dreamland)

"Here are a few music examples from Draumalandið (Dreamland), a documentary about the exploitation of Iceland's natural resources, tells a story about huge things—the fortunes of a whole nation; the destruction of vast landscapes; and the global economic forces, greater still than any nation, that fuel it all—and for his soundtrack to the film, Valgeir has brought out a heavier set of tools. His entire roster of Bedroom Community labelmates contributes in some way to the creation of the score: classical composers Nico Muhly and Daníel Bjarnason, industrial wizard Ben Frost, and American folksinger Sam Amidon, along with a host of others, and the small orchestra assembled for the record swells from moments of expansive beauty into massive, surging symphonic force. Its harmonies are anxious, pulsing, driven."

Posted by the Flea at 09:28 AM

The Mesh of Civilizations and International Email Flows

"The Internet was supposed to let us bridge continents and cultures like never before. But after analyzing more than 10 million e-mails from Yahoo! mail, a team of computer researchers noticed an interesting phenomenon: E-mails tend to flow much more frequently between countries with certain economic and cultural similarities."

Posted by the Flea at 09:27 AM

Lore of Arda

The first and only time I have ever been impressed by Stephen Colbert.

Posted by the Flea at 09:24 AM

Recovery - Save Me (Maybe)

Posted by the Flea at 09:22 AM

March 07, 2013

Prince Igor (1969)

Alexander Borodin - Prince Igor, with The Kirov Opera
Director Roman Tikhomirov

"Russian composer Alexandre Borodin (1833-1887) spent nearly two decades working intermittently on the music and libretto of +Prince Igor, but he left the opera unfinished at his death. Acquaintances Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov and Alexander Glazunov completed it, and the opera debuted in St. Petersburg in 1890. Through rousing patriotic music flavored with Slavic and Oriental motifs, the folk opera centers on episodes in the life of Prince Igor Svyatoslavich (1150-1202), a Ukrainian ruler who wages war against Tartar invaders from the east known as the Polovtsy. After Igor (Boris Khmelnitsky) and his wife, Princess Yaroslavna (Nelly Pshennaya), sing duets and bid farewell, Igor and his son, Vladimir (Boris Tokarev), lead their army against the Polovtsy. Although Igor and his soldiers fight valiantly, the Polovtsy win the war and capture Igor and his son. The Tartar leader, Khan (Yevgeny Nesterenko), treats Igor and Vladimir with respect, sings a salute to Igor, and regales him when night falls with lively dancing (the 'Polovtsian Dances,' performed by the Kirov Ballet). Meanwhile, Vladimir falls in love with Khan's daughter. At home in the Ukraine, a plot to usurp Igor's throne unfolds. Then, with the help of a sympathizer, Igor and Vladimir escape, but the boy is recaptured. After Igor returns and reunites with Yaroslavna, his subjects rejoice, the plot against him defuses, and he prepares to march off again." - Mike Cummings, Rovi

Posted by the Flea at 05:58 AM


"Toronto has edged ahead of Chicago to become North America's fourth most populous city."

Posted by the Flea at 05:57 AM

James Duane - Don't talk to the police

"James Duane is a Regent University School of Law professor, former criminal defense attorney, and Fifth Amendment expert. He received some notoriety for his "Don't Talk To Police" video of a lecture he gave to a group of law students, which instructs citizens to never talk to police under any circumstances. After gaining mild popularity on sites such as YouTube and Google, his lecture received criticism from The Weekly Standard.

"In support of his "Don't Talk to Police" mantra, Duane cites, among other things that: 1) police have the ability to lie to criminal suspects during questioning, and sometimes employ this tactic; 2) police may have substantial evidence against even innocent witnesses and; 3) individuals convinced of their own innocence may have unknowingly committed a crime which they inadvertently confess to during questioning."

Posted by the Flea at 05:54 AM

Mr FijiWiji feat. CoMa - Cynical

Posted by the Flea at 05:52 AM

March 06, 2013

ComicBookGirl19 - Summer Movies of 2013 Premature Judgments!

"In this episode, CBG19 makes impulsive, hasty, and unfair premature judgements based on guesses about movies that haven't come out yet!!"

(NSFW, enthusiasm, swears)

Posted by the Flea at 07:49 AM

More than meets the eye

"Hussein Chalayan debuted his line of transforming dresses at this year's Paris Fashion Week."

Hat tip to thecampblogmike.

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

3-D printed cars nearing production

"Picture an assembly line not that isn’t made up of robotic arms spewing sparks to weld heavy steel, but a warehouse of plastic-spraying printers producing light, cheap and highly efficient automobiles."

Posted by the Flea at 07:47 AM

Kinfolk Track 2009

The Platonic ideal of the bicycle.

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

Jack Buchanan - Everything Stops for Tea

Hat tip to the Sister of the Flea.

Posted by the Flea at 07:43 AM

March 05, 2013

Blackbird (violin)

Blackbird violin.jpg

"The Blackbird, also called the Black Stone Violin, is a full-size playable violin made of black diabase after drawings by Antonio Stradivari (Stradivarius), but with technical modifications to allow it to be played."

Posted by the Flea at 08:28 AM

Axe restoration

“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.”
- Abraham Lincoln

Posted by the Flea at 08:27 AM

Wax seals

A history and how-to.

Posted by the Flea at 08:24 AM

Mila Kunis is good at interviews

Posted by the Flea at 08:23 AM

Kaval sviri

"Kaval sviri (the Flute Plays) is a traditional Bulgarian folk song. Popularized by the Bulgarian State Radio and Television Female Vocal Choir, it was later used by composer Joseph LoDuca as the basis for the Xena fight theme, in the show Xena: Warrior Princess."

Posted by the Flea at 08:22 AM

March 04, 2013

Skater Girls seen in Vanak Square in Tehran, Iran

Tehran Skater Girls.jpg

Posted by the Flea at 08:49 AM

Skateistan: To Live And Skate Kabul

"Skateistan: To Live And Skate Kabul is a beautiful and moving short film that follows the lives of two young skateboarders from Afghanistan who attend the Skateistan charity project. Juxtaposing the harsh reality of life in Kabul with the hopes and ambitions of the country's children, the film is a touching ray of light from a country only ever in the news for all the wrong reasons."

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

Tanaz Eshaghian - Love Crimes of Kabul (2011)

"Love Crimes of Kabul is a 2011 documentary film following select cases of inmates at Badam Bagh women's prison in Kabul, Afghanistan where half are jailed for moral crimes. 'If they were good women, they wouldn't be here,' says a prison guard at the beginning of the film."

Directed by Tanaz Eshaghian.

Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

The Vandals - Shi'ite Punk

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

March 03, 2013

Galaxy - Audrey Hepburn

"If the success of a commercial is measured by the number of heads it turns, then Galaxy chocolate's latest ad is nothing short of triumphant. Set against the idyllic Mediterranean coastline of the 1960s, the company's one-minute spot features ostensibly authentic footage of Audrey Hepburn — the late film and fashion icon whose slender, elfin visage evokes a Golden Age beauty that, for most, is beyond the realm of imitation. Yet that's exactly what production company Framestore pulled off for Galaxy, thanks to advanced VFX techniques and a meticulous attention to detail."

Posted by the Flea at 08:52 AM

In a closed society where everyone is guilty, the only crime is getting caught

"Just when you think liberals can’t put any more distance between their pompous, outlaw self-image and their actual (hopelessly cowardly and conformist, push-comes-to-shove) beliefs."

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

The law of unintended consequences

"When the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a ban on plastic bags and required businesses to charge a nickel for paper bags, city leaders believed it would be better all around."

The first knock on consequence turns out to be an increase in shoplifting.

Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

LisaTV @ Disneyland Bats Day

Posted by the Flea at 08:43 AM

Gary Numan - Farewell Concert, Wembley (1981)

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

March 02, 2013


Lernert & Sander - Everything.jpg

"Everything is a perfume by Lernert & Sander consisting of all fragrances launched in 2012."

Over the last year Lernert & Sander collected almost 1400 samples of newly launched fragrances. By mixing the content of all of these bottles, they created 1.5 liter of Everything.
Posted by the Flea at 08:28 AM


What made St. Clair streetcars bunch up like this?

You know how the old cliché goes - you wait ages for a bus then two come along at once. Here in Toronto, that saying extends to comical numbers of streetcars too. Case in point yesterday on St. Clair where Reddit user z24lucifer spotted a line of vehicles that appears to stretch to the snowy horizon.

Bunching theory: Why three buses come at once.

Public transport vehicles – underground trains, for example – set off from the start of their routes equally spaced. The problem starts when one is briefly delayed, making more time for passengers to accumulate at stations further down the track. Since passenger boarding is the main factor delaying trains, these extra people slow the train even more.

Meanwhile, the gap between the delayed train and the one behind is shortened. That means fewer passengers for the train behind to pick up, making it pass through stations faster until it catches the train ahead. Eventually, all the trains on a route can end up crawling after the slowest, lead train.

Hat tip to the Sister of the Flea.

Posted by the Flea at 08:24 AM

Roof Light & Owsey - Pancho Villa

Posted by the Flea at 08:22 AM

March 01, 2013

The Goon Show - The Lost Emperor

The Goon Show: Harry Secombe, Peter Sellers and Spike Milligan present The Lost Emperor, recorded in October 1955.

Posted by the Flea at 10:28 AM

Halley VI Base

"In 1964 Archigram member Ron Herron proposed the Walking City, a giant mobile structure that would move to where the resources were. In 2005, Hugh Broughton Architects and engineering giant AECOM won an international competition to build the Halley VI base for the British Antarctic Survey. On February 5, 2013, it is officially opened."

Posted by the Flea at 10:27 AM


"The meteor that exploded over the steppes of southwestern Russia sent a low-frequency rumble bouncing through the Earth, giving scientists new clues about the biggest cosmic intruder in a century."

Posted by the Flea at 10:24 AM

HD 140283

"A metal-poor star located merely 190 light-years from the Sun is 14.46+-0.80 billion years old, which implies that the star is nearly as old as the Universe."

Posted by the Flea at 10:23 AM

Freur - Doot Doot (Live 1983)

Posted by the Flea at 10:22 AM