The "dead parent test" for effective movie dialogue


From the Now You See It YouTube channel: "What makes dialogue work? Let's explore the power of dialogue in film and take a look at the offensively named 'Dead Parent Test.'" Read the rest

Learn to make your bed the military way


Fort Knox Army Drill Sergeant Shane Medders explains how to make a bed the right way, with hospital corners.

Also, Core 77 interviewed NYC-based photographer, speaker and on-camera coach Michael Cinquino, who was a Petty Officer Third Class on the fast combat support ship U.S.S. Detroit:

What was the procedure?

You had a set amount of time to make the bed properly, starting from scratch each time--

Sorry, what do you mean by "from scratch?"

You had to rip all of the sheets off and put them in a pile on top of the bed, and start from there.

How did they enforce that?

The drill instructor's standing right there, supervising.

Why make you start from scratch every time?

It was to teach attention to detail. To go through the whole process and teach you that executing little details correctly matters. As a sailor, if you screw up a detail, people can get killed. So the pillow's got to be centered, the catch-hem has to be pointing up, the fold a certain distance, et cetera.

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Trump gave fake platinum and diamond cufflinks to Charlie Sheen as a wedding gift


Charlie Sheen went on a talk show and shared a story of the time Donald Trump gave him a pair of cufflinks, telling Sheen they were made from platinum and diamonds and were designed by Harry Winston.

Sheen says he got a jewelry appraiser to take a closer look at the cufflinks.

"She took the loupe, spent about four seconds and kind of recoiled from it - much like people do from Trump," he said. "She says, 'In their finest moment, this is cheap pewter and bad zirconias.' And they're stamped 'Trump.'

"I just thought, what does this really say about the man that he said, 'Here's a great wedding gift,' and it's just a bag of dog shit?"

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Curious gentleman destroys museum piece


This inquisitive fellow was unable to keep his hands off a delicate museum piece hanging from the wall at the National Watch & Clock Museum. After breaking it, he lost interest and walked away, leaving his companion to clean up the mess. Read the rest

Why it is a very bad idea to keep a lynx as a pet


Nehala says: This is "what happens when someone mail-orders a lynx, which ends up destructively urinating all over the small apartment, is maladjusted, and is terrified of visitors, or in this case, a housesitter." Read the rest

20 grams of melt-in-your hand gallium for $10


Gallium is a metal that melts at 86 degrees F. It's more fun than playing with mercury, and probably safer, too (it *will* temporarily stain your skin gray though, because it's "wet" when liquid and will adhere to the crevices of your skin). My daughter's friend brought some over a couple of weeks ago, and it was such a hit at our house that we had to get some of our own. This 20 gram sample is just $10 including shipping on Amazon. Read the rest

Trippy animated zoom video makes everything you see in the real world recede


After watching Ben Ridgway's "Continuum Infinitum" video, everything I looked at seemed to recede for a while. Ben recommends downloading the video and looping it.

As you watch the movie for a minute or so and then look away, you will experience a mild optical illusion that feels as if everything you look at is shrinking away from you. This is caused by the motion after-effect (MAE). It is a visual illusion experienced after viewing a moving visual stimulus for a time (tens of milliseconds to minutes) with stationary eyes, and then fixating on a stationary stimulus. The stationary stimulus appears to move in the opposite direction to the original (physically moving) stimulus. The motion aftereffect is believed to be the result of motion adaptation.

Neurons coding a particular movement reduce their responses with time of exposure to a constantly moving stimulus; this is neural adaptation. Neural adaptation also reduces the spontaneous, baseline activity of these same neurons when responding to a stationary stimulus. One theory is that perception of stationary objects, for example rocks beside a waterfall, is coded as the balance among the baseline responses of neurons coding all possible directions of motion. Neural adaptation of neurons stimulated by downwards movement reduces their baseline activity, tilting the balance in favor of upwards movement.

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Kid gets head unstuck from fence bars

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A little kid figures out how to break out of his self-imposed prison. Read the rest

Idiots ignite fireworks shelves inside a Walmart


Interestingly, you can buy fireworks at Walmart stores in Arizona. You aren't supposed to light them all at once inside the store, though. The gentleman who did will soon learn that fireworks are harder to come by in prison. Read the rest

Guy Fawkes signature, before and after torture


In 1605 an English Catholic man named Guy ("Guido") Fawkes joined 12 other Catholics in an attempt to to blow up the Houses of Parliament with 36 barrels of gunpowder. Fawkes was caught red handed in the cellar of the Parliament. He was tortured an executed. Here's how his signature appeared, before and after torture.

In those days, England didn't take kindly to Catholics, especially ones who tried to kill Queens and members of Parliament. I recently read Simon Singh's excellent The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography which has a chapter about Mary Queen of Scotts who, while under house arrest in the late 1500s, sent encrypted messages to a group of Catholic men conspiring to assassinate Queen Elizabeth and put Mary on the throne. The men were captured and gruesomely executed in front of a crowd of gawkers. As Elizabethan historian William Camden wrote, the conspirators were “cut down, their privities were cut off, bowelled alive and seeing, and quartered.” Mary, being a Queen, was merely beheaded. Read the rest

Amazing makeup transformation


There's no information about the makeup artist who transformed a young woman into a Wattie wannabe. Check out the process photos. Read the rest

British man who tried to take gun from cop at Trump rally says he wanted to kill Trump

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Michael Steven Sandford, 20, was arrested at a Donald Trump rally in Las Vegas after he tried to take a gun from a police officer. He said he'd been thinking about killing Trump for a year.

From BBC:

He had reportedly tried to seize the gun after saying he wanted Mr Trump's autograph at Saturday's rally. He said he had been planning to try to shoot Mr Trump for about a year but had decided to act now because he finally felt confident enough to do so, court papers say.

I guess this means we need to ban all British people coming to the US. Read the rest

How to make a spare padlock key at home

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 7.15.36 PM

This guy used sticky tape, a candle, a tin can lid, and scissors to make a spare key. He skipped the part where he cut the business part of the key, though. Read the rest

Wigglegrams - 3D images that need no glasses


Coke Truck image: Bob Weisz

The Wigglegram subreddit has oodles of examples of 3D GIF images made by taking photos from different vantage points and looping them.

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Stonehenge: bgrnbrg
Exploding Ocean [OC] from wigglegrams
Exploding Ocean: Bob Weisz
Yosemite Raven - 3D GIF [Nishika N8000 - Portra 400] from analog
Yosemite Raven: 90harper

Here's a barely SFW video made of wigglegrams: Read the rest

Japan's hardcore minimalists, who have sold most of their possessions


Fumio Sasaki, a 36-year-old editor in Tokyo, sold or gave away his collection of books, CDs and DVDs, as well as most of clothes and other possessions. He told the Guardian: “Spending less time on cleaning or shopping means I have more time to spend with friends, go out, or travel on my days off. I have become a lot more active.” Read more about Sasaki and other Japanese minimalists, many inspired by Mari Kondo's book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing/\. Read the rest

Binyamin Netanyahu's $1,600 hair styling

Image: Kremlin

How lucky is that Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, gets to charge taxpayers for his $1,600 hairstyling bill? Almost everyone else who suffers from expensive hair syndrome must pay for it out-of-pocket.


A visit to New York by Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, and his wife Sara cost the country’s taxpayers $541,886 (£382,000) , according to a detailed breakdown published after months of attempts by his office to prevent its release.

The cost – which included thousands of dollars for hairstyling and makeup for Netanyahu – follows a series of other recent controversies over the luxurious life enjoyed by the prime minister at the taxpayer’s expense – not least their travel.

... A year earlier, it was revealed that Netanyahu had an annual contract of more than $2,000 with a Jerusalem ice cream parlour to supply his favourite flavour – pistachio.

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Used prescription drugs at yard sale

Image: Wikimedia/ParentingPatch

Gordopolis says: "I've been to a lot of yardsales, pretty sure this was a first."

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