Tanker-truck full of inedible pig blood

Welp, there's something you don't see every day. Unless you work at an abattoir.

“I’m Goin’ to Prom!” Read the rest

Grotesque portraits from Christian Rex van Minnen

Christian Rex van Minnen's grotesque portraits are spectacular. IO9's Lauren Davis called them "portraits of aristocrats from another dimension." I love the crammed-together, rammed-together higgeldy piggeldy of insectoid body parts, high fashion, and toons. He's got a show on at Denver's Robischon Gallery.

2012-2011 - Christian Rex van Minnen (via IO9) Read the rest

Ethan Zuckerman on civic engagement

Tracking how young people are expressing voice and exerting agency in public spheres through participatory politics.

English town council wants to abolish apostrophes in street-names to end "confusion"

The Conservative council in Mid-Devon, England has mooted a proposal to remove apostrophes from street signs, claiming they cause "potential confusion." I live on a street in East London with an on-again/off-again apostrophe whose presence depends on which database you're using. But given that all serious UK navigation and geocoding is done by postcode, this just seems like a bit of silliness.

The council communications manager Andrew Lacey said: "Our proposed policy on street naming and numbering covers a whole host of practical issues, many of which are aimed at reducing potential confusion over street names.

"Although there is no national guidance that stops apostrophes being used, for many years the convention we have followed here is for new street names not to be given apostrophes.

"In fact, there are currently only three official street names in Mid Devon which include them: Beck's Square and Blundell's Avenue, both in Tiverton, and St George's Well in Cullompton – all named many, many years ago. No final decision has yet been made and the proposed policy will be discussed at cabinet."

The science fiction legend Damon Knight used to semi-seriously advocate for the abolition of the apostrophe altogether. I remember thinking he had a point at the time.

Council considers ban on apostrophes in street signs [Press Association] Read the rest

Loose Ends: "Hangin' on a String (Contemplating)" (1985)

From Loose Ends' 1985 LP A Little Spice, "Hangin' on a String (Contemplating)" was the first track by a British band to ever hit #1 on the US Billboard R&B Chart.

National Security Letters Unconstitutional, finds federal judge, who bans them

"Ultra-secret national security letters that come with a gag order on the recipient are an unconstitutional impingement on free speech, a federal judge ruled Friday." Kim Zetter at Wired News has more on the order from U.S. District Judge Susan Illston, who today ordered the government to stop issuing so-called NSLs. [Wired News] Read the rest

Drew Friedman on The Caricature Art of Robert Grossman

Artist Drew Friedman has assembled a nice gallery of airbrush illustrator extraordinaire Robert Grossman's work. I became familiar with Grossman's illustrations by reading National Lampoon (Thank goodness the Boulder Public Library subscribed to it so I could read it when I was 11 years old). Grossman also did work for Paul Krassner's The Realist, and illustrated the cover of The Firesign Theatre's LP, Don't Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me The Pliers. Drew says:

Illustrator, sculptor, comics artist, animator Robert Grossman has had an astounding career covering the last 50 years. To say he's the greatest airbrush artist/caricaturist of all time isn't hyperbole, it's an understatement. Picking just a few samples from his incredible body of work is a near impossible task (he's created over 500 magazine covers alone!) but I'm presenting some of my favorites. If anyone deserves to have a career retrospective/anthology it's Bob Grossman. Check out these beautifully rendered, consistently brilliant and memorable illustrations, most chosen from the 60's-80's. As Steven Heller wrote: "his mordant wit is never duplicated".

Bob is still going strong, turning out wonderful new drawings and comic strips regularly for, among others, Rolling Stone, The Atlantic and the NY Observer where I've been proud to have alternated with him as a regular cover artist for the last 20 years.

The Caricature Art of Robert Grossman Read the rest

Best of Etsy Star Wars posters

On Wonderland, Alice has had a deep trawl through the world of Etsy Star Wars posters and rounded up a collection of top choices, including the Space Cowboy by CONCEPCIONSTUDIOS (top) and Vintage Pop Art set from Posterinspired (right).

Beautiful Etsy Star Wars posters Read the rest

Look at this portrait of Sydney, Australia, in oranges and bananas

Just look at it. By Domenic Bahmann. Shared in the BB Flickr Pool. Read the rest

Reuters suspends employee accused of aiding Anonymous

Earlier this week, 26 year old Reuters deputy social media editor Matthew Keys was indicted on charges he handed Tribune Co. network passwords to Anonymous, which were then used to deface the LA Times website for about 30 minutes. The alleged offense took place in 2010, before Keys was hired at Reuters. The DoJ press release mentioned a maximum penalty of up to 30 years in the case. Today, Reuters suspended him with pay. Read the rest

US to beef up missile defense along West Coast, to defend against possible North Korea attack

Uh-oh. The NYT reports that the United States "will deploy additional ballistic missile interceptors along the Pacific Coast to increase the Pentagon’s ability to blunt a potential attack from North Korea in a clear response to recent tests of nuclear weapons technology and long-range missiles by the North." Guess the Dennis Rodman basketball diplomacy thing had its limits. [New York Times] Read the rest

CIA drone secrecy rejected by federal appeals court

A federal appeals court today ruled the CIA cannot continue to “neither confirm nor deny” the existence of the drone war, in a court case prompted by a Freedom of Information Act request by the ACLU. Here's the ruling. [Antiwar via Glenn Greenwald] Read the rest

Eco headline of the week: Disposable chopstick addiction destroying China's forests

From the Washington Post: "China uses 20 million trees each year to feed the country’s disposable chopstick habit... 4,000 chopsticks per tree, that’s roughly 80 billion chopsticks per year." All those chopsticks have led to "rampant deforestation and forest quality far below the global average," and Greenpeace estimates the destruction rate at 1.18 million square meters of forest every year. Read the rest

National Post wants to copyright article titles

Canada's National Post is trying to convince a court that article titles should be copyrightable, overturning centuries of law and practice. Well, that's dumb. (Thanks, Chris!) Read the rest

Cafe brazenly risks citation from department of sanitation

(Via Arbroath) Read the rest

55 gallon barrel of personal lube now just $1,228.85

The legendary 55-gallon barrel of water-based love lube is now half-off at Amazon. I wasn't quite sure what to say about this slippery deal, myself, but reviewers there dove right in.

Carla was completely drenched, and her momentum slid her to the front door - which she somehow managed to pry open with a pair of oven mitts. The last thing I knew, "No-Fun Carla" was screaming profanities and sliding down three flights of steps. I didn't pay much attention because I was too busy trying to salvage the lube. I managed to get about half of it back into the barrel - the other half probably seeped into Mrs. Pulaski's unit below me. I never bothered to ask if she appreciated the free gift of lubricant. — Jerome Albertson, Topeka

Read the rest

Anti-pot GOP Assemblyman accused of pot possession

NY state Republican Assemblyman Steve Katz has been charged with marijuana possession after a Thursday morning traffic stop. "Katz currently sits on the Assembly's Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Committee as well as its Higher Education committee; last year, he voted against a bill that would have legalized medical marijuana." [Times Union, via Steve Silberman] Read the rest

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