Sci-Fi Sundays: Amazing Science Fiction, April 1958

This week I got a chance to un-pack this collection. I've had it for about 10 years now and it has been in boxes the whole time.

I absolutely love this cover. It is unabashedly silly. What is that boy even doing with that dog? Why lug that iron lung so far from your home-dome if the dog can't even walk around? That thing has to weigh a ton. All joking aside, there's something delightful about all the space covers from before 1961, when Yuri Gagarin became the first human in space. Interestingly though, the first dog in space was Laika, in 1951, so I guess they really have no excuse! Read the rest

Diner "overwhelmed with customers" after Michelin star awarded by mistake

Le Bouche à Oreille is a perfectly decent working class diner in Bourges that'll feed you a slap-up meal for €10. La Bouche à Oreille, though, is a brilliant €48-course restaurant in Paris. Only one of them should have been awarded a Michelin star, but don't tell that to the posh sorts descending en masse upon an overwhelmed greasy spoon.

The Michelin Guide apologised, saying it had confused the café with a more refined establishment of the same name near Paris. The listing was changed on its website, but not until two days later.

Véronique Jacquet, who runs the café, said it had a regular clientèle of local tradesmen. “Suddenly, we were rushed off our feet. Reporters were coming in and then my son phoned me from Paris, where he lives. He almost died laughing.”

Three cheers for the diner's chef, Penelope Salmon: “I put my heart into my cooking.” Read the rest

Norma McCorvey dead at 69; anonymous 'Jane Roe' plaintiff in Roe v. Wade abortion case

Norma McCorvey, the anonymous "Jane Roe" in the landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade, has died. Read the rest

Mental

Via John Aravosis: "Does no one in that White House do any advance work at all? Look closely. They're just sloppy." Read the rest

The easiest way to shower with a goat

My sister came across this product, which promises all the fun of taking a shower with a goat with none of the usual hassles of renting a shower-goat.

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A Grateful Dead family album

I came to the Grateful Dead late by some standards, and left its orbit early by most. My first album was the band’s third, “Aoxomoxoa,” which I purchased shortly after its release in 1969, and I didn’t experience the Dead live until 1970. From then until 1973, I saw them a lot, mostly at Winterland in San Francisco, but by 1974, with a few memorable exceptions, I was pretty much done.

My blind spot then, is the bulk of the band’s 30-year career, which also happens to be the years when the Grateful Dead was at its most famous and popular, becoming one of the highest-grossing arena and stadium acts of its day. That’s probably why Alive With the Dead: A Fly on the Wall With a Camera, by photographer Susana Millman, seems like such a revelation to a fallen Dead Head like me. Oh sure, Millman gives us plenty of shots of the hoopla surrounding the 1987 release of “In the Dark,” which went double platinum, but her photographs also offer intimate peeks inside a scene I’d always dismissed as being too big for its own good.

And in many ways, it certainly was, as Millman’s photos of the tie-dye-clad crowds filling enormous venues like Soldier Field in Chicago might have argued in the hands of a different author and photographer. Soldier Field, of course, is where the Dead performed its last show on July 9, 1995 — lead guitarist Jerry Garcia would die one month later. But instead of using the pages of her book to caution readers against simultaneous addictions to heroin, cigarettes, and Ben & Jerry’s, Millman gives us a glorious double-printed, double-exposed photograph of the band on stage at its last gig, dwarfed by the adoration of its fans, stage lights, and fireworks. Read the rest

Free kindle edition of "100 Books You Must Read Before You Die"

This looks like a good collection of public domain novels, in Kindle format. I've been wanting to read Sister Carrie again, so I got this. It's volume 1 of a 2 volume set. Here's volume 2.

Here are the books in the volumes that I've read and recommend. Burroughs, Edgar Rice: Tarzan of the Apes Wells, H. G.: The Time Machine Twain, Mark: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Stevenson, Robert Louis: Treasure Island Sinclair, Upton: The Jungle London, Jack: The Call of the Wild Lewis, Sinclair: Main Street Defoe, Daniel: Robinson Crusoe Dostoyevsky, Fyodor: Crime and Punishment

I did a spot check and the formatting looks fine. (It's sometimes a problem with free and cheap Kindle books.)

Image by Mark Brennan from Oakton, Virginia, United States of America (Portage Glacier) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons Read the rest

Trump deletes post that describes mainstream media as "enemy of the American people."

Archive.org's Wayback Machine has a copy of Trump's deleted tweet, which read: "The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @CNN, @NBCNews and many more) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American people. SICK!" Read the rest

Li'l Trump

Tiny Trumps is a new subreddit page that features the little fella in his daily life. From Melania making sure he doesn't take a tumble to Obama doing his best not to laugh to Trumpkin entertaining Justin Trudeau, Tiny Trumps is my current go-to when I need a good chuckle. Read the rest

Minister frightened of doll

Rev. Keith Ogden of Hill Street Baptist Church in Asheville, NC is afraid of a new boy doll announced by American Girl.

"This is nothing more than a trick of the enemy to emasculate little boys and confuse their role to become men," he wrote in an e-mail to his congregation. It was titled, "KILLING THE MINDS OF MALE BABIES."

"There are those in this world who want to alter God's creation of the male and female," he wrote. "The devil wants to kill, steal and destroy the minds of our children and grandchildren by perverting, distorting and twisting (the) truth of who God created them to be."

I suspect Rev. Ogden described American Girl as an "enemy" because he's secretly telling his followers to obey the Lord's command to "love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back." Read the rest

Pentagon found no documents approving Flynn's pay for Russia TV appearances

The Pentagon has a rule requiring retired officers to report income from foreign states. But the Pentagon says it can find no records that former National Security advisor Michael Flynn filed a report after he'd been paid by Russia for an interview on the Russian state television network RT and for dining with President Vladimir Putin at RT's 10-year anniversary gala in 2015. Via Politico:

In a letter to the Republican and Democratic leaders of the House oversight committee delivered Tuesday, acting Army Secretary Robert Speer confirmed that Flynn — a retired lieutenant general — filed no documentation of his trip.

In response, House oversight committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz and Elijah Cummings, ranking Democrat on the committee, sent a letter that suggests Flynn may have inappropriately accepted payments from the Russian government or its agents in exchange for his attendance. Scrutiny is growing on Flynn’s trip and whether his payment violated the Constitution’s Emolument’s Clause, which prohibits any person holding an “office of profit or trust” in the federal government from accepting foreign payment. The prohibition has long been considered to apply for retired military officials.

As you recall, Flynn was fond of leading "lock her up!" chants on Trump's campaign trail. Read the rest

Watch Adam Savage build Chewbacca's bandolier

MythBusters' Adam Savage whipped up a perfect replica of Chewbacca's bandolier and satchel.

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Listen to a ten hour playlist of killer Moog music

In 1948, Robert Moog, age 14, was inspired by classical Theremin performer Clara Rockmore to build his own Theremin. Then in 1964 Moog designed a brand new kind of electronic instrument, a modular voltage-controlled synthesizer. That instrument and Moog's work since transformed the sound of modern music forever. To hear how, dive into this fantastic 10-hour Moog playlist:

(The Guardian via Open Culture) Read the rest

Watch a model dangle off a skyscraper for a photo shoot

This video featuring Viktoria Odintsova is probably not adhering to local occupational safety regs. If the photo below gets your palms sweating, you may want to skip the video above.

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Card catalogs had their own elegant standardized handwriting

Behold Library Hand, a font designed specifically for librarians without typewriters who created cards for card catalogs. What's cool is the variation within the guidelines: Read the rest

Sidewalk kintsugi: repairing cracks with gold

Artist Rachel Sussman discovered the ancient art of kintsugi, repairing cracked vases with gold, and applied it to cracked pavement and flooring for her Sidewalk Kintsukuroi series. Read the rest

Camera lens made from 32,000 drinking straws

Mich Farrell and Cliff Haynes created a camera from drinking straws that effectively works as 32,000 pinhole cameras, creating an analog version of pixellation, but with circular pixels. Read the rest

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