Boing Boing 

Mark Frauenfelder

Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the founding editor-in-chief of MAKE. He is editor-in-chief of Cool Tools and co-founder of Wink Books. Twitter: @frauenfelder. His new book is Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects

Interview with imprisoned "vagina selfie" artist

Japan is famous for its penis parades, where people carry around giant wooden dicks and buy penis candy and souvenirs. So why is manga artist Rokudenashiko likely to be imprisoned for making whimsical sculptures based on plaster castings of her vulva? (See Japanese artist goes on trial over "vagina selfies and Manga cartoonist arrested for her whimsical vagina sculptures.) Vice's Broadly has a video interview with this brave artist who is getting a raw deal from the Japanese government.

The Contender: The Game of Political Debate

The Contender is a political debate card game that combines the fun of Cards Against Humanity with the realism of fibs, bluster, pandering, grandstanding, bombast, and every logical fallacy you can think of. It was created and designed by four Kickstarter veterans.

Interview with 10-year-old cartoonist Sasha Matthews, author of "Sitting Bull" and "Pompeii"

I loved this interview with 6th-grader cartoonist Sasha Matthews, creator of two historical comic books: Sitting Bull (which we ran on Boing Boing) and Pompeii: Lost and Found. You can buy copies of her comics here.


Watch: Interview Ed Piskor about Hip Hop Family Tree

Hip Hop Family Tree cartoonist Ed Piskor was interviewed by CBR when he was at Comicon earlier this summer. The comic started on Boing Boing as a weekly strip in 2011 and continues to run every week here.

Congratulations to Ed for winning the Eisner Award, too!

This video was shot and edited by Eric Mittleman, who produces videos for Boing Boing.

My kids-and-grownups project book, Maker Dad, on sale for Kindle: $1.99

My book, Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects is just $2 as a Kindle right now.

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Living in a tent hanging from a cliff with a 4,000 foot drop

The Shark's Fin on Mount Meru is 21,000 feet above the Ganges River in Northern India. In this short video, climber-filmmaker Jimmy Chin gives a tour of his tent, which hangs on the side of a sheer cliff, and contains 200 pounds of stuff that he and his climbing partner have hauled with them.

Watch the trailer for the full-length documentary about ascending this challenging mountain, called Meru.


Back-to-school must-have: pink bullet-proof backpack


Don't let your child out of the house without this stylish pink bullet-proof backpack. It has been "tested against 2 types of ammunition, yet weighs just a few more ounces than non-armed backpacks. Ideal for everyone, including students, law enforcement and military personnel and security staff."


While you're at it, why not grab a 3-pack of P.S. Products Strike Spikes: "Just attach the thick, quarter-sized aluminum disc to the back of your baseball-style cap. Whip your cap off and fight back with the Strike Spike's short but ultra-sharp spikes. Or wear it on your watch band so you can strike an assailant before he even gets a chance."

(Thanks, Andreas!)

This is Galaxy Whiskey. I hope you relish it as much as I.


1972's Galaxy "light whiskey" was a low-point in American spirits.

Ben Marks of Collectors Weekly says: "Hunter Oatman-Stanford just interviewed Noah Rothbaum about his new book, The Art of American Whiskey. In their conversation, Rothbaum explains (among other things) how whiskey was sold during Prohibition, much like medical marijuana is in some states today."

I had known medicinal whiskeys were available at this time, but I assumed they came in nondescript bottles, like rubbing alcohol or aspirin. But of course, they didn’t. They were packaged in these beautiful, engaging, and highly illustrated boxes and bottles, which shows that, in fact, the whole medicinal whiskey business was not about “medicine” but about letting people continue to drink whiskey.

Before Prohibition, whiskey was prescribed for a range of real symptoms and illnesses, but after alcohol was outlawed, I think it was prescribed for things like the common cold or stress or anxiety as a way to get around the law. I imagine a lot of prescriptions were for subjective conditions. I think it’s an accurate parallel to some of the marijuana clinics today, with prescriptions ranging from the legitimate to the recreational.

Jenny Hart's embroidered cover for Postmistress


Our friend Jenny Hart illustrated the cover to Penguin's re-issue of The Postmistress by Sarah Blake. It one of six books in the Penguin by Hand collection, "comprising six of Penguin's most popular women's fiction titles of recent years, all with new and beautiful craft-inspired jackets."



Silicone BBQ gloves on sale for $7


We love our silicone kitchen tools, so I couldn't resist getting these. Regularly $35, Amazon is selling heat-resistant silicone BBQ gloves for just $9 a pair. They work as pot holders and tong replacements so you can handle meat right on the grill. I've always struggled with getting chickens out of the roasting pan and onto the cutting board. I hope this takes care of that problem.

The Garden of Eden reimagined by artists Charles Burns and Killoffer


My friend Alvin Buenaventura is the proprietor of Pigeon Press, which publishes excellent comic books and books. He has just released In the Garden of Evil, a book that combines the talents of Charles Burns, Killoffer, and Will Oldham (Bonnie 'Prince' Billie). He gave me a copy and it is a gorgeous artifact. Check out the sample pages below.

This limited-edition artist book features a series of drawings inspired by the classic biblical story The Garden of Eden as well a song written in response to the images. All of the of the artwork for this book was created in collaboration by artists Charles Burns and Killoffer. Every book is hand-bound, individually numbered, and signed by both artists. Musician Will Oldham (aka Bonnie 'Prince' Billy") wrote an exclusive song for this project inspired by the series of drawings. The song is included on a 7” vinyl flexi-disc, as well an MP3 which you can download from the code provided with each book.


In the Garden of Evil by Charles Burns & Killoffer ($50)
Song by Will Oldham
Dimensions: 7.25" x 7.25"
Pages: 28
Cover: Self-cover with french flaps (each embossed, one of which is a custom insignia designed by Charles Burns) offset printed on premium heavyweight art paper
Interior: Offset printed on premuim heavyweight art paper
Binding: Each copy hand-sewn with black 100% linen 50grm binding thread
Production date: July 2015
Publisher: Pigeon Press
Limited edition of 1000 copies available for direct retail sale from the publisher, each signed & numbered by both cartoonists, includes black flexi-disc. 400 Hors Commerce copies reserved for the the contributors, the publishers, and for promotional use, these copies include clear flexi-discs.







This poster for the Cincy Comicon pays homage to old comic book ads

cincyconCartoonist Tony Moore (co-creator of The Walking Dead comic book series) designed this very fun poster for the Cincy Comicon (September 12-13), which pays homages to the old comic book ads for novelties and practical jokes. He did such a good job that I asked him to write a bit about it.

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Excellent weird makeup from Army of Darkness

Bruce Campbell is wearing a face prosthetic, posing next to Sam Raimi's Army of Darkness (1992) assistant camera operator James Fitzgerald.

Good deal on Titanium quasi-spork


The Light My Fire spork isn't technically a spork, but rather a handle with a fork on one end and a spoon on the other. It's regularly priced at $15, but Amazon is selling it for $6.33 + $0.99 shipping.

Jailer-owned "Christian business" forced inmates to make cornhole games

Stand Firm Designs' website was taken down for unknown reasons ( snapshot), but when the website was operational you would have learned that the self-described “Christian Construction Business” employed “retired contractors” to make its bean bag “cornhole” boards. What the website didn't say was that the company is owned by two Tennessee jail officials and that they are accused of using prison slave labor to build the boards. They were caught after inmates hatched a plan to expose them:

To prove the items being sold by Stand Firm Designs were made by inmates, Stephney and Brew concealed their names under pieces of wood nailed to the backs of items. They also wrote the number 412148, which refers to a section of Tennessee code that makes it illegal for jail officials to require an inmate to perform labor that results in the official's personal gain. The AP was shown some of the items with the concealed names and numbers.

Stand Firm Designs is operated by Rob Hill, a building trades instructor at the Metro-Davidson County Detention Facility; Steven Binkley, a computer instructor who works out of a room adjoining the woodworking shop; and Roy Napper, who formerly worked at the jail run by Corrections Corporation of America.

Stand Firm Designs co-owner Roy Napper is standing firm: “All I can tell you is it’s really just a bogus thing. There’s not really any slave labor going on over there,” Napper told the AP. “Since it’s under investigation, I can’t really tell you anything else.”

Trailer for Patricia Highsmith movie about troubled 1950s lesbian love affair


Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara star in Carol, a new movie based on Patricia Highsmith's novel, The Price of Salt. Published in 1952 under the pen name Claire Morgan, it's about a troubled love affair between a rich bored housewife and a poor frustrated department store shopgirl. Some critics believe Nabokov borrowed liberally from The Price of Salt in writing Lolita.

The late Patricia Highsmith is the author of Strangers on a Train and the Talented Mr. Ripley (read my review here), both of which were adapted into excellent movies, so I have high hopes for Carol.

RELATED: Patricia Highsmith's "Desert Island Discs"

Robber with sword meets cashier with bigger sword

"When would-be robbers armed with a sword storm a Pittsburgh convenience store, the cashier pulls a bigger sword of his own."

[via] sword