Large Hardon Collider

Oogly says,

On Saturday, The New York Times mis-printed the CERN Large Hadron Collider as being the "Large HARDON Collider".

I have a web site tracking the proliferation of this Sopranos-worthy malapropism. It's funny when a fat New Jersey criminal doesn't know any better, but when the NYT and serious scientific journals make a Freudian slip, it's hilarious.

Link, mildly NSFW.

I wonder if this runs on DONG Energy. Read the rest

Cat litter cake is both clumpy *and* delicious

This was the lesson I learned on Sunday evening, during a dinner + Mighty Boosh viewing party with a few friends. Noted grossout pastry expert Andrea James baked the cake, and also takes the cake, for ick-out ingenuity and an improvised recipe that was nilla-wafery, icing-frostily delicious. It was even vegetarian! Andrea explains:

Not vegan - has eggs (chicken haploids) and dairy (cow sequeezins). But no animal products derived from a dead animal. Pudding, which many recipes for this cake contain, has blood and/or connective tissue in it (gelatin). You could do it vegan, by using a vegan cake recipe and vegan wafers, if you wanted.

Above, iPhone snapshots I took (1 + 2 + 3) before we dug in. I thought the photo would elicit more LOLs if I placed the cake on the floor next to actual catfood dishes. The dessert was as yummy as the photos are abhorrent. Note the painstaking attention to reality evidenced by the absorbent (sugar) blue sprinkles! Also the melted tootsie-roll cat doodoos! I could not bring myself to eat them, for I am as much of a fan of this particular candy as I am of poo verité.

Anyhoo. Here are more photos and a HOWTO, from Andrea. Step one: buy a fresh cat litter box...

Read the rest

Jordan Crane's Little Pink Pearl silkscreen print

Jordan Crane's beautiful "Little Pink Pearl" is a 26" x 40" hand-pulled silkscreen print, limited to 53 prints. Link Read the rest

Video of creepy eyelid-poking beauty tip

Dan Shapiro says: "Item #3 on this page consists of an attractive woman smearing superglue on her eyelid, then repeatedly poking herself. The goal is to create a western-style eyelid "crease", and the video is just creepy."

Link Read the rest

Decorated front yard in Ojai, CA

I took this photo of a happy front yard in Ojai, CA, a couple of weeks ago. Click photo to enlarge. Read the rest

Podcast recycles actual talk radio calls

Clay Roe says:

The podcast we produce, "Ask Mr. Biggs!", is a fictitious, small town radio call-in talk show.

A simple concept, to be sure. But there's a fun little twist.

Caller audio comes from real calls lifted from real talk radio shows. We remove the original host from the conversation, re-arrange the parts a bit, and insert Mr. Biggs as the new "host." The results are very seamless and comical, but not in ways you might think. We try not to go for easy laughs, but rather for a more subtle, nuanced, character-driven humor.

The podcast is produced by a couple of audio nuts, so the sound quality of the show is as good as you'll hear anywhere. Very clean and realistic. The calls are integrated with great care and precision. In fact, listeners to the podcast often never realize that the calls have been taken from other un-related sources.

It's this reason why we recently decided to lift our skirt, and expose the fact that these callers are from REAL talk radio broadcasts. You can't write this stuff. You can, however, edit and switch around what they're saying to make them even more unusual.

Link Read the rest

Homeland Security bans IBM indefinitely from US Federal Contracts

Dav says: "The Feds have just banned IBM as a vendor, across the board: '"IBM and its subsidiaries are barred from receiving any new government contracts, new orders under existing contracts or purchase card transactions, according to a March 28 e-mail the Homeland Security Department’s Office of Procurement Operations circulated to procurement officials.'"

The ban seems to stem from "improperly obtained information about a contract [IBM] was bidding on from EPA employees."


IBM is down just 1% in after hours trading. Read the rest

19th century Japanese flip-over drawings

Pink Tentacle has a nice gallery of old Japanese drawings of heads that look like faces right-side-up or up-side-down.

Joge-e, or “two-way pictures,” are a type of woodblock print that can be viewed either rightside-up or upside-down. Large numbers of these playful prints were produced for mass consumption in the 19th century, and they commonly featured bizarre faces of deities, monsters or historical figures (including some from China). Only a few examples of original joge-e survive today.

Link Read the rest

Unusual retro craft project -- dolls in a dead tree

The Collector's Quest blog has an illustrated list of "Thirteen Retro Kitsch Items That Likely Didn’t Survive For You To Collect." Shown here: "Dolls displayed in a dead tree." Link (Via Hang Fire Books) Read the rest

Dennis Stock's 1960s California photos

Magnum Photos has samples of Dennis Stock's stunning photos from his 1966-67 trip through California.

Link | Stock's book: Made in the USA (Via NotCot) Read the rest

Mugwumps Bug Powder t-shirt

Strephon Taylor liked the Bed Bug Murder label I posted about a while back. He also digs William S. Burroughs, whose bug fascination and experiences as an exterminator appear throughout his novels. So inspired by both, Taylor created a fantastic Mugwumps Bug Powder t-shirt!


Previously on BB: • Bed Bug Murder vintage label Link Read the rest

Today is Run Some Old Web Browsers Day!

It being the tenth anniversary of Mozilla, Jamie "Founder of Mozilla Project" Zawinski has declared today "Run Some Old Web Browsers Day!" He's mirroring a bunch of lovely old pages from ", the Internet Web Site of the Mosaic Communications Corporation" for your antique browser pleasure.

* Trivia Question #1: Do you remember why through exist?

* Trivia Question #2: Do you remember the behavioral difference the browsers exhibited when they were talking to a Netscape web server?

* Trivia Question #3: When was the <HYPE> tag implemented, and what was its origin?

* I had originally planned on re-hosting these web sites on an SGI Indy running Mosaic Netsite Commerce Server, just for maximal comedic value... and to see how long it took before someone Øwned it, since there must be someone out there who still remembers how to launch an assault on Irix 5.3. Unfortunately, that wasn't possible for political reasons explained below.

Link Read the rest

Haunting photos of a rotting wooden coaster

Doran sez, "Flickr user el_rebelde has created a small but wonderful set of images from the Big Dipper roller coaster at Chippewa Lake Park, Ohio. His notes say it was built in the 1920's and ended service in 1978." Haunting pix indeed.


(Thanks, Doran!) Read the rest

Vintage cocaine party photos

Here's a fun Flickr set of found photos from the 1980s showing a group of friends doing some blow and having a blast. Flickr user foundphotoslj writes: "I found these in a red photo album marked 'Darlene' at a swap meet in Huntington Beach, California." Link (Thanks, Jess Hemerly!)

UPDATE: The majority of the photos have been removed. Read the rest

Military Report: Secretly 'Recruit or Hire Bloggers'

Over at the Wired Danger Room blog, Noah Shachtman has an item about a report produced in 2006 for the U.S. Special Operations Command with suggestions that the military consider "clandestinely recruiting or hiring prominent bloggers."

Since the start of the Iraq war, there's been a raucous debate in military circles over how to handle blogs -- and the servicemembers who want to keep them. One faction sees blogs as security risks, and a collective waste of troops' time. The other (which includes top officers, like Gen. David Petraeus and Lt. Gen. William Caldwell) considers blogs to be a valuable source of information, and a way for ordinary troops to shape opinions, both at home and abroad.

This 2006 report for the Joint Special Operations University, "Blogs and Military Information Strategy," offers a third approach -- co-opting bloggers, or even putting them on the payroll.

Link (image: Peter Starman / WIRED) Read the rest

Science News on food science

Science News has a good cover story this week about how chefs are learning more about the science of food to make more interesting and tasty dishes. According to the article, "food science" has traditionally been an industrial pursuit leading to Spam, processed cheese, and other "foodstuffs." The molecular gastronomy trend is changing that though. From Science News:

"Twenty years ago there was no science of the soufflé, béarnaise, chocolate mousse, or custard," says chemist and chef Hervé This (pronounced Tiss), of the French National Institute for Agricultural Research in Paris...

The relationship between scientists and chefs, or lack thereof, troubled the late physicist Nicholas Kurti. At a presentation for the Royal Society of London in 1969 he lamented, "I think it is a sad reflection on our civilization that while we can and do measure the temperature in the atmosphere of Venus, we do not know what goes on inside our soufflés."

Kurti's now famous lecture, titled "The Physicist in the Kitchen," was a turning point, says Vega, author, with Job Ubbink, of a forthcoming review on molecular gastronomy in Trends in Food Science & Technology. "It was very impactful on the scientific community." The lecture was peppered with demonstrations by Kurti and his daughter Camilla. They used a vacuum to remove water vapor from meringue and presented a pork loin tenderized with pineapple juice, which contains the protein-splitting enzyme bromelin.

Another milestone, says Vega, was the publication in 1984 of Harold McGee's On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen, which explained physics and chemistry for the home cook.

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Russian doomsday cult in cave

Seven members of a Christian cult in Russia have left the cave they had holed up in since Novemeber. Apparently more than two dozen cult members are still inside the cave, located 400 miles southeast of Moscow, waiting for the world to end next month. Part of the cave's roof has already collapsed. According to the BBC News, a priest "specialising in apocalyptic literature" is on the scene talking with them through a ventilation shaft. From the BBC News:

The seven women (who emerged Saturday) were allowed to leave with cult leader Pyotr Kuznetsov after he was brought to the scene to negotiate...

Kuznetsov, who calls himself Fr Pyotr, declared himself a prophet a number of years ago and has attracted followers in Russia and Belarus.

He is thought to have ordered his followers into the cave but did not join them.

Link Read the rest

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