Frank Jacobs' great Strange Maps blog turns up a real treasure this week: "A Night-Club Map of Harlem," drawn ca. 1932 by cartoonist Elmer Simms Campbell. The map hits all the high spots, metaphorically (The Cotton Club, Small's Paradise, The Savoy) and literally (131st and Lenox, where a figure helpfully identifies himself as "th' Reefer man"). The only major omission, a caption says, "is the location of the various speakeasies but since there about 500 of them you won't have much trouble." The thing bristles with helpful information (Tillie's "specializes in fried chicken — and it's really good!") and bursts with life — all over the map, figures furtively ask about the day's number, and at 142nd and Lenox, a white-tuxedoed Cab Calloway rises toward the heavens, wailing an ecstatic "Hi-De-Ho." If Harlem was half as jumping in 1932 as Campbell makes it seem, every legend about uptown in its heyday must be true.
If you don't want your child to murder you, then forbid them from listening to the awesome 1980s experimental band, Negativland. In this recording of a news program, the media discusses how Negativland's song "Christianity Is Stupid" may have been what made a 16-year-old kill his family. A teenager named David Brom murdered his… READ THE REST
Trevor Klee on an unusual but useful specialism: spotting fake ID cards. The usual tricks of checking the stock and beeping the code won't work! You have to know the difference between laser and machine cutting, and that's just for starters. Laminate reflectivity, letter tactility, hologram resolution… Fake IDs are better than ever before, driven… READ THE REST
If you're a fan of The Dude, you already know that a rug can really tie a room together. Well, you can certainly argue the same out of a quality lamp. While the rug does its work at ground level, a lamp casts its glow in a full 360-degree spread, maintaining just the tone and… READ THE REST
Look, not everyone can be a writer, and there's no shame if you're one of the many who has made peace with the fact that sterling prose just isn't in your wheelhouse. However, that realization doesn't absolve you or your business of the consequences. Whether you're a wordsmith or not, someone has to craft a… READ THE REST
Backing up everything you save on your phone or tablet seems like it should be an incredibly easy process. However, anybody who's actually done can attest that it seldom happens smoothly. To have enough space to back things up, users usually need to pay for an expensive cloud storage option, which also requires a stable… READ THE REST
If you're a creative type who is always thinking about creating and customizing your own looks and styles, you've probably thought about heat transfer before. The process of transferring ink-based designs onto your favorite fabric is so simple that you have to wonder, "Why don't I make my own shirts, tote bags, and hats myself?"… READ THE REST