Mystery hole in Arizona quickly sealed up

A couple days ago, a woman and her son on a walk near their home in Tonopah, Arizona found a very strange and deep concrete-lined hole. A representative from the American Pump and Well Service Repair said it doesn't appear to be a well. Local news 3TV dropped a camera into the hole, and at the bottom, around 30-feet down, the saw "mostly trash, a box and a bucket." The Bureau of Land Management has since filled in the hole. From 3TV:

A BLM spokesperson says the land was owned by the Federal Aviation Administration back in the 1950s. The property was later turned over to the BLM...

The BLM says the FAA still has access to the land as part of a 'right of way' grant, but says the hole has nothing to do with their operations. BLM says it had permission to cover it.

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Watching synchronized swimmers upside down is very trippy

In the Olympics, there should be a medal for how impressive a synchronized swimming routine looks upside down and underwater. (via @ziyatong, thanks UPSO!)

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Vacuum chamber vs giant gummi-marshmallow

Youtube has democratized the practice of using expensive industrial and scientific apparatus to torment inanimate objects, giving us all a peek into the world of the lucky few who happen to have a hydraulic press gathering dust; but if you thing compressing things is fun, wait until you've seen recreational decompression in action; as with this giant gummi-bear-shaped marshmallow, being subjected to hard vac in the name of science-adjacent fun. (via Neatorama) Read the rest

High-heeled shoes for your baby

Pee Wee Pumps dot com is a site where you can supposedly order high-heeled shoes for your baby. They are all quite trashy. The site is controversial, reports the BBC.

It comes amid growing concern at what is seen as the sexualisation of children.

"This is not ok," wrote Melissa Balinski.

Another commenter, Jen, said that "promoting products for babies this way is just sick". ...

"I will definitely avoid this brand," wrote Barrow, commenting on a picture of a baby in "black pump classics". "This is horrid," added Flory.

But some users left positive comments, remarking how the shoes made the infants "look adorable". "Too cute," wrote Latoyia.

Reminds me of the classic Hemingway 6-word story: "For sale: baby shoes, wait, what?" Read the rest

Amazing body paint illusion of a woman cut in half

Israeli makeup magician Ilana Kolihanov created this wonderfully creepy optical illusion. See more of her incredible work on her Instagram feed.

A post shared by Ilana Makeup Artist🌻🐙 (@ilana_makeup_artist) on Sep 2, 2016 at 10:02am PDT

A post shared by Ilana Makeup Artist🌻🐙 (@ilana_makeup_artist) on Aug 29, 2016 at 2:27pm PDT

A post shared by Ilana Makeup Artist🌻🐙 (@ilana_makeup_artist) on Oct 7, 2016 at 3:01pm PDT

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Road maintenance manager affirms that painted penii do not hasten pothole remediation

The internets will tell you that spraypainting a giant penis around a pothole will get your town's roadworks to prioritize its repair. The internets are wrong. Read the rest

The mystery of the Tully Monster continues

In 1958 in an Illinois creek bed, an amateur fossil collector named Francis Tully discovered the fossilized remains of a bizarre creature that resembled a mollusk, insect, and worm yet was none of those things. Since then, thousands of 300 million-year-old fossilized "Tully Monsters" have turned up and the creature was officially named as the Illinois state fossil.

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Google's aborted Ara phone was supposed to launch with an aquarium module full of wriggling tardigrades

Back in 2014, Google announced Project Ara, a click-in/click-out modular concept-phone that you could customize by adding or removing modules as you saw fit. Read the rest

Finally, a mime for the rest of us

Billy the Mime is working through some things. What they are, exactly, I don't want to guess.

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'Hefty fellow does amazing dive' meme, the 'Shooting Stars' remix

Song: Bag Raiders, 'Shooting Stars.' One Hour Version is here, and below. It's making me happy. Read the rest

UFO found in Google Earth image of Antarctica

A flying saucer was spotted on a Google Earth image near the South Pole in Antarctica. You can see it right here. Mysterious Universe claims that "melting ice could have formed a round depression as it sank into the surrounding snow, or wind could have created a small whirlwind effect as it blew into alcoves in the rock wall." Screw that though. I want to believe.

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Weasel electrocuted at CERN to go on museum display

Last April, a weasel-like stone marten jumped a substation fence at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) near Geneva, Switzerland and was promptly electrocuted. Now, that same poor creature's corpse is going on display at the Rotterdam Natural History Museum in an exhibition titled Dead Animal Tales. From The Guardian:

The stone marten is the latest dead animal to go on display at the museum. It joins a sparrow that was shot after it sabotaged a world record attempt by knocking over 23,000 dominoes; a hedgehog that got fatally stuck in a McDonalds McFlurry pot, and a catfish that fell victim to a group of men in the Netherlands who developed a tradition for drinking vast amounts of beer and swallowing fish from their aquarium. The catfish turned out to be armoured, and on being swallowed raised its spines. The defence did not save the fish, but it put the 28-year-old man who tried to swallow it in intensive care for a week....

“We want to show that no matter what we do to the environment, to the natural world, the impact of nature will always be there,” (museum director Kees) Moeliker said. “We try to put a magnifying glass on some fine examples. This poor (stone marten) literally collided with the largest machine in the world, where physicists collide particles every day. It’s poetic, in my opinion, what happened there.”

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Blooms are strobe-animated sculptures

Blooms are sculptures that animate when a camera captures them in motion at a certain frame rate—a common accidental example is the illusion of car hubcaps spinning "backwards" on video. John Edmark's designs embody the mesmerizing precision of objects one would assume were computer-generated if we didn't know better: reality itself seeming to simulate our simulation.

Unlike a 3D zoetrope, which animates a sequence of small changes to objects, a bloom animates as a single self-contained sculpture. The bloom’s animation effect is achieved by progressive rotations of the golden ratio, phi (ϕ), the same ratio that nature employs to generate the spiral patterns we see in pinecones and sunflowers. The rotational speed and strobe rate of the bloom are synchronized so that one flash occurs every time the bloom turns 137.5º (the angular version of phi).* Each bloom’s particular form and behavior is determined by a unique parametric seed I call a phi-nome (/fī nōm/). -John Edmark

Update: Previously! Read the rest

Guide to weird movies

366 Weird Movies is a selection of the best (for various definitions of "best"), each reviewed with a clear eye on its weirdness. The descriptions are complete with bullet-point lists of oddities and trivia and an "indelible image" for each flick. [via MeFi]

It gets them right, too. For example, it selects Dean Stockwell lip-sync "Candy Colored Clown" for Blue Velvet instead of Frank Booth inhaling rage through an oxygen mask.

Ben is a homosexual stereotype, but ultra-macho Frank, who we would expect to be a raging homophobe, doesn’t notice; instead, he’s overwhelmed and impressed by Ben’s “suaveness.” Frank’s hoodlums menace Jeffrey, but we are unprepared for the most horrific event: Ben serenades Frank with Roy Orbison’s “In Dreams,” swaying his hips, staring into his eyes, and using a light-up microphone. While nothing happens in this scene that we could put our finger on and say “that’s impossible!,” the effect is undoubtedly weird—and frightening. It is one thing to be captured by gangsters who you know are going to beat, maim or even kill you; but when they stop along the way to perform karaoke, you realize that all rules of normal human behavior are off, and there is no possible way to predict your fate.

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Astronaut: watch YouTube videos with no views

Most YouTube videos have at least a few views: the uploader making sure it works and applying basic edits. But zero views? That's a special class of film: automated, forgotten, mistaken, baffling, beautiful. Astronaut will show them to you. [via MeFi]

Today, you are an Astronaut. You are floating in inner space 100 miles above the surface of Earth. You peer through your window and this is what you see. You are people watching. These are fleeting moments.

These videos come from YouTube. They were uploaded in the last week and have titles like DSC 1234 and IMG 4321. They have almost zero previous views. They are unnamed, unedited, and unseen by anyone but YOU.

I can't stop watching. It seems almost too perfect, like a montage in a movie about the wonderful, unbeknownst things humans were doing before the Orange Death held sway. Read the rest

This 1958 TV western predicted Trump with a character named... Trump

A 1958 episode of the television western Trackdown features a con artist named Trump who wants to build a wall to protect a town from destruction. From the Classic TV Archive:

Walter Trump, a confidence man, puts on a long robe and holds a tent meeting in the town of Talpa. He tells the townspeople that a cosmic explosion will rain fire on the town and that he is the only one that can save them from death. Ranger Hoby Gilman attempts to prove Trump is a fraud.

And a bit of dialog from the episode:

Narrator: Hoby had checked the town. The people were ready to believe. Like sheep they ran to the slaughterhouse. And waiting for them was the high priest of fraud.

Trump: I am the only one. Trust me. I can build a wall around your homes that nothing can penetrate.

Townperson: What do we do? How can we save ourselves?

Trump: You ask how do you build that wall. You ask, and I'm here to tell you.

"Trackdown Shakedown" (Snopes, thanks David Steinberg!)

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Short film on Barney Smith’s Toilet Seat Art Museum

San Antonio, Texas has what is probably the world's largest collection of toilet seat art under one roof: Barney Smith’s Toilet Seat Art Museum. Take a couple of minutes to enjoy Wes Plate's profile of a charming old guy's lifelong hobby. Read the rest

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