Canadian police concerned about acid candy

CC-licensed photo by Stefan Munder

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police in British Columbia have issued a warning about LSD-laced gummi bears . Apparently they found a bag of the psychedelic bears during a drug raid. From CANOE:
"While the police don’t want to create panic, because most persons who would purchase such an item want it for personal use, they do want parents to be aware of the presence of these gummi bears in the Cranbrook area," police said in a release.
"Gummi bears laced with LSD a new trend: RCMP" Read the rest

On the wearing of satchel-bags

Pithy fashion advice from The Guardian on how to wear this year's hot accessory, the satchel-bag: "You are the small child, standing in the parade, pointing at the empress of fashion, Alexa Chung, and crying: 'Look! A bag that crosses a lady's chest is only going to look good on the particularly lithe! On everyone else it's going to smush one's boobs until one points north, one points south, and one's chest resembles a busted compass. Can no one else see this? I feel like I'm eating crazy pills!'"

I wore a messenger bag with my laptop in it for several years, and all I've got to show for it is weirdly disproportionate psoas muscles, mild spinal curvature, and back pain.

How are you supposed to wear a satchel bag? Read the rest

Vintage ads from fictional futures photoshopping contest

Mark Rayner is running another "Vintage Ads of Fictional Futures" photoshopping contest: "find a vintage ad, and then create a product from a created world -- it can be from a book, movie, TV, etc. It doesn't have to be science fiction; you could go with a fantasy world, an alternate reality, whatever. The only proviso is that it has to have been written by someone else, so none of your own bizarre fictional futures."

Here's a great source for raw materials: the LiveJournal Vintage Ads group.

Vintage Ads of Fictional Futures, Mark II (Thanks, Mark!) Vintage Marlboro ads targeted at moms Another nice Texas Instruments Photoshop: Elephant and head ... Vintage ads depicting abused and domesticated women Vintage-style ads for Facebook, Skype and YouTube Vintage ads from a contrafactual history Vintage ads where kids leer demonically at food Demon children want you to eat Creepy vintage print ads Vintage tech commercials 101 Classic Computer Ads Read the rest

The American West: 1890, 1970, 1999

I've come to accept that the closest I will ever get to time travel is matching up modern photos to historic shots of the same place. Usually, that means extensive time travel is restricted to cities, places where lots of people were taking lots of photographs at lots of different points over the years. The Third View project is a notable exception. Starting with geological survey photos from the late 1800s, the project then adds second shots of the same spots taken as part of a Rephotographic Survey in the 1970s. Finally, new images, taken between 1997 and 2000, show how the lonesome west changed over the course of 100 years.

It's not entirely what you might expect. Sure, some places got more populated, but a surprising number of the sites are still as empty and wild as they were in the 19th century.

I'm particularly fond of this trio of images taken at Nevada's Comstock Mines, where you can see the way strip mining changed the landscape, and how nature is reclaiming the now-mostly abandoned site.

The Third View Project Read the rest

Amelia Beamer and Mark van Name at SF in SF reading series, Sept 11

San Franciscans: the latest installment of the excellent, free science fiction reading series SF in SF is coming this Saturday, Sept 11, featuring Amelia Beamer and Mark Van Name. Free to attend, highly recommended. Read the rest

Jonathan Coulton, Wil Wheaton comedy interviews at PAX

Here's Yeshmin, a YouTube character whose schtick is somewhere between Yakov Smirnov and Andy Kauffman, wandering the halls of the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX: a nerdgasmic gamer/culture convention run by the Penny Arcade webcomic), chatting with the likes of Wil Wheaton and Jonathan Coulton. Funny stuff!

Yeshmin Goes to PAX (with Wil Wheaton, Jonathan Coulton & Paul and Storm) (Thanks, Greg!) Wil Wheaton vs. Authors' Guild vs. Kindle Wil Wheaton teaches his son to slay dragons Wil Wheaton (and his GTA obsession) profiled in GEEK. Wil Wheaton reads Peter and Max, a Fables novel Wil Wheaton: So, ASCAP to *license* podcasts? Readers respond ... Fall TV Shows/Wil Wheaton TV Geek troubador Jonathan Coulton profiled in NYTs Video for Jonathan Coulton's "Future Soon" -- Gadgets ... Unreleased Jonathan Coulton album on a limited edition USB stick ... Ukulele covers of Jonathan Coulton's "Still Alive" from Portal ... Jonathan Coulton on Writing Portal's End Theme Gadgets Video: Jonathan Coulton at SXSWi Gadgets Free Frontalot/JoCo single: "Diseases of Yore:" Read the rest

Death Star/TIE-fighter ear tattoo

Tattoo artist Jacob Walsh got this fabulous bit of space-battle tattooed on his ear: "I have the severed hand of Luke, still clutching to his lightsaber on my right arm. It needs a bit more work but I'd say it's about 90% completed."

Let's Hear It For This Cool Star Wars Ear Tattoo (via Geekologie) Star Wars/Dalí tattoo No Regrets: LEGO Star Wars "Thugs for Life" tattoo ... Darth Vader Hello Kitty tatt 20 Awesome Robot Tattoos Gadgets Read the rest

Missed Connections personal ads from Dragon*Con attendees

Creative Loafing gathers up the best of this year's Craigslist "Missed Encounters" messages from Dragon*Con in Atlanta, the awesome nerdfest that ran last weekend:
You - WOW blond wizard. Me - ancient wizard. You were pressing awfully hard into me during our photo. Just wondering if there was a lingering interest. Put your robe color in Subject Line of first email...

I can't figure out why I left without getting your contact information. I know your name is Dan, and you make leather jackets. You were the best Wolverine I've ever seen. We talked for a while, just standing in the crowd. I wish I could find a picture of us. Hopefully, I'll see you at another convention soon. :)

I was dressed up as Eddie Riggs and saw you in the Marriott Saturday night. You invited me over and we talked about our costumes with your boyfriend (?). He was dressed as Eddie as well but I was getting the feeling that he didnt want me around. My friend took some pictures of the three of us together and I got a couple of pics of you and your Eddie. I'd like to get the chance to talk with you some more if you're interested. If nothing else I'd like to send you copies of the photos we got. Hope to hear from you soon.

Alien vs Predator Interstellar Swinger Party (Dragon Con - Sheraton). Full Alien or Predator costume required. All single women and couples will be accepted. There will be limited spots for single men.

Read the rest

Atlanta appeals court: It's "nonracial" to call an adult black employee "boy"

A black man who worked for a Tyson chicken plant in Alabama sued his employer for discrimination, after being passed up for promotion in favor of white workers from another plant—and after being referred to regularly and derogatorily as "boy" by his supervisor, as were other black co-workers. An appeals court in Atlanta, GA ruled that calling an adult black man "boy" in this context was "nonracial." Notably, the NYT article skips the euphemisms. Core values, anyone? (via David Carr) Read the rest

Login screens from Penn and Teller BBS, 1987

HappySmurfday has dug up and scanned some printouts of the login screen from Penn and Teller's circa-1987 BBS, Mofo Ex-Machina. They are nerdgasmic and glorious.

Mofo Ex-Machina (Thanks, HappySmurfday, via Submitterator) Penn and Teller make thousands of bees appear out of "nothing ... Penn & Teller's Invisible Thread: lost comedy magic special ... Teller and the neuroscience of magic A tour of magician Teller's house Penn Jillette's video rant show Penn Jillette on artistic satisfaction and magic Long-lost Penn and Teller videogame for download Read the rest

Ukrainian salt mine therapy for asthmatics

From Wired's Raw File, a gallery of a creepy Ukrainian salt mine that has been converted into a convalescent home for recovering asthmatics. It's something called Speleotherapy: breathing in salt-saturated air as a means of soothing respiratory problems: "Kuletski describes the atmosphere among patients as 'calm and relaxed' despite the 'appallingly unsafe conditions. ... The presence of kids wearing safety helmets and cheap plastic sheets to protect them from dripping water from the ceiling makes being there even more surreal,' says Kuletski."

Eerie Ukrainian Salt Mines House Convalescing Asthmatics

(Image: Kirill Kuletski/Wired) Read the rest

Print and fold envelopes lined with Google satellite maps

Here's a service that takes Google maps satellite views and converts them into print-and-fold envelopes you can use for your correspondence, creating a kind of handsome, 21st-century stationery.

MapEnvelope (via Make) Civil War mail art: envelope illustrations from mid-1800s - Boing ... Paper and envelopes that look like icons Peri Peri keychain emulates envelope tear-off strips ... Read the rest

Steampunk horror-show walk-through

Here's a first-person walk-through of "Machine," a steampunk horror show built by hobbyists in their garage. It's jaw-dropping awesomesauceular -- "real horrorshow," as Little Alex might say.

Homemade steampunk walkthrough: Fangoria 2010 (Thanks, George!) Read the rest

Physics lecturer demonstrating by unicycling across class with juggling student on shoulders

Here's University of Auckland engineering lecturer, Peter Bier riding a unicycle across his classroom with a juggling student on his shoulders, memorably demonstrating some key principles of physics.

University lecturer on unicycle with student on his shoulders - juggling!!! (Thanks, Tim!) Blind juggling robot High-speed Dance Dance Revolution kid juggling three pins Juggling monkey makes ape out of AACS The Self-Balancing Unicycle Gadgets Fast food table with unicycle wheels Steampunk Segway: the Legway Read the rest

XKCD cake

Pink Cake Box made this custom XKCD wedding cake for one of their customers in New Jersey: "The top of the cake includes cutouts of the comic characters with a red heart on a wire between them. The entire cake is covered in white fondant with black thin bands at the base of each tier. Equations inspired by this comic decorate the remaining tiers."

xkcd Comic Wedding Cake (via Super Punch) Bakers make cake with image of flash drive instead of image in ... Resignation letter on cake Katamari Damacy cake kicks ass HOWTO bake a no-mess chocolate cake in five minutes Cthulhu cake! Funny cake decorating flub AT-AT wedding cake Read the rest

Gibson's ZERO HISTORY: exciting adventure that wakes you to the present-day's futurism

William Gibson's latest novel, Zero History, is his best yet, a triumph of science fiction as social criticism and adventure. Continuing on from 2007's Spook Country, Zero History features a reformed, dried out version of Milgrim, the junkie anti-hero from Spook Country. He's been rehabilitated at the expense of Hubertus Bigend, the shadowy power-broker whom we first met in Pattern Recognition. Bigend has got Milgrim hunting for the designer behind a mysterious line of fetish-denim, in the hopes of remaking it as the basis for a lucrative US military contract; this being Bigend's idea of novelty-seeking good times.

Joining Milgrim is Hollis Henry, the former pop star from Spook Country, still reluctantly in Bigend's employ, but even more conflicted, and missing her ex-boyfriend, a thrill-seeking nutjob whose idea of a good time in jumping off tall buildings in a glidersuit. Milgrim -- and later, Hollis -- track the secret denim from South Carolina to London to Paris and back to London again, and very quickly find themselves embroiled in an intrigue involving US spooks, experimental UAVs, rogue infosec specialists, and a palace coup at Blue Ant, Bigend's legendary design and branding firm.

What makes Zero History into Gibson's best so far is how absolutely perfectly he captures the futuristic nature of the present day. Milgrim -- a junkie dried out after a ten year fugue of living rough and stealing to buy pills -- is well-suited to this task, emerging as if from a time-machine into the 21st century in full swing, able to narrate its essential strangeness without seeming contrived. Read the rest

Eight-foot shark caught in Potomac River

Fisherman Wily Dean was trying to catch cow-nosed rays in Southern Maryland's Potomac River for a marine biologist this week, but he ended up netting an 8-foot-long bull shark. Unfortunately, the story doesn't have a happy ending for the shark. From NBC Washington:
"We had an interesting morning bringing it in," Dean said. "It was quite a fight."

Once the shark was captured, the next question was: What the heck do you do with it?

"I am probably going to have it mounted, maybe the head," Dean said. "Right now, the shark's in the freezer."

"8-Foot Shark Caught in Potomac River" Read the rest

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