We can smell fear. What’s as fascinating as the results of the experiment is the experiment itself. Comparing the sweat of first-time skydivers to the same people running on a treadmill demonstrates sideways thinking that gets shit done.
Short excerpt from Mindy Kaling’s upcoming book. She nails it with romcoms as sci-fi subgenre.
The farmers market guy, who sells Black Mission figs for $2 a basket, told me there’s only a week or two left in the season. As I hovered over the sink eating the ripest of the figs (food equivalent of drunkenly making out with a near stranger in a dark hallway at a bar), I thought about not tasting that jammy pulp for 10 months. Will I be stuffing my face over the same sink next season? Will even a $2 basket of Black Missions be too expensive?
In the time a fig tree sheds its leaves, grows new ones then develops the syconia—figs aren’t technically fruit, botanically speaking…did you know?—so much could happen. We’d almost have a new or re-elected president. I could be happier or sadder. But the figs, they will always taste the same.
A NYT profile of Mindy Kaling, one of my most favorite people in comedy. Notice I said “people” and not “woman” or “woman of color.” She’s so fucking awesome we don’t need that affirmative action shit.
A handy dandy guide to cleaning your sex toys in one place! No one wants to get screwed, in more ways than one, with a dirty, germy dildo.
Well, I use the old Strathmore vellum surface paper, which is the best paper you can get in the Western world for ink line drawing. It has a good, hard surface. I have it mailed from the New York Central Art Supply in New York. For a while I was using this old Strathmore paper from fifty years ago that some guy sent me, it had bad comic art on one side, hacked-out comic work from 1959, 1960, but the paper is superior to anything you can get now. It just holds the ink better. I ran out of that and now I use this new stuff that’s not quite as good.
I use Pelikan black drawing ink, and the crow-quill pen nibs. And you stick them in a handle. They’re all getting harder to find, all these antique art instruments. The companies that have made them are dying off one by one. But I got lucky. One day about six or seven years ago, my daughter, Sophie, bought a box of old pen points at a flea market in France. She found a box of about a hundred drawing pen points, and they’re the best ones I’ve ever used. They last and last, everything about them is fine, the point, the tensile quality, even the metal, the glass. The metal was just better, back then. I’ve still got maybe fifty of those. I think they’ll probably last me the rest of my life.
Awesome longform interview with R. Crumb. Overlaps with some stuff in the Crumb documentary, but lots of interesting detail such as the pen/paper issue quoted above.
Will pen and paper art become extinct? Reading Crumb’s lament about “antique instruments” which aren’t so antique is a bit heartbreaking.
The move came after universally-reviled white supremacist gang member Lawrence Brewer ordered up a particularly lavish feast before his execution Wednesday night. Brewer, 44, had been convicted for his role in a 1998 hate killing in which a 49-year-old black man, James Byrd, Jr., was chained by his ankles to a pickup truck and dragged for miles along an asphalt road. The killers dumped his decapitated body in front of an African-American cemetery in Jasper, Texas.
According to the Houston Chronicle: “Brewer ordered—but did not eat—a final meal of two chicken fried steaks, a triple-meat bacon cheeseburger, a cheese omelet, a large bowl of fried okra, three fajitas, a pint of Blue Bell ice cream, and a pound of barbecue with a half loaf of white bread.”” —
Petty move on both players? Ordering a huge last meal but not eating and banning last meals. Why not eliminate the death penalty and get rid of the last meal idea that way?
Slate tracked down the first known grunter in pro tennis, Victoria Heinicke. Also a brief history of grunting in both men’s and women’s tennis.
It is true that because of the shrieking, I stopped watching women’s tennis at some point.
To me it seems disingenuous for the military to start recruiting at LGBT centers when it resisted DADT repeal for so long. All I can do is wish those joining the military post-repeal a service that’s as free of de facto discrimination as possible. Institutional discrimination doesn’t simply disappear when a law is null and void.
The hybrid fruit industry doing it the old-fashioned way—flower parts having sex with the aid of human workers. Each year, they spend 6-700k to develop new breeds, whose saplings won’t bear first fruit until 4 years later.
And most people think a Pluot is a thing that exists in nature without human-aided flower sex.
Ziggy’s creator died today. Now, I’ll never know why Ziggy didn’t wear pants and whether he wore underwear or not.
Patrick House, a neuroscientist from Stanford University and past winner, says captions that usually prevail fall into what he calls the “theory of mind” category, in which the writer projects the characters’ intent and hints at it, but lets readers fill in the blanks.
He arrived at his theory after what he thought was the perfect pun-based caption was passed over. Out of revenge, he submitted a caption the following week that appealed to the “urban ennui” he assumed afflicts the average New Yorker reader. It won.
Earlier this year, Mr. Mankoff let consumer psychologist Peter McGraw and cognitive scientist Phil Fernbach conduct a quantitative analysis of every entry in the 281st contest to determine whether there’s a code for winning.
Among the findings: captions that use words that are uncommon in other entries were more likely to make the shortlist, as were captions that didn’t refer to concrete elements in the cartoon. Other rules of thumb: avoid exclamation points and keep entries short.” —
I think analyzing comedy kills it more often than not, but this examination of the New Yorker caption contest caught my interest. Also, celebrities whining about not getting picked? STFU!
I used to send submissions to the contest. Every caption was about AIDS.
So sayeth the abbot of the Shaolin Temple on WuTang. Pretty interesting read on the controversial abbot whose VW SUV and iPad use seems to reflect the C.R.E.A.M. way of life.
Over decades I’ve lovingly—and occasionally expensively—built a wine collection that has given me daily satisfaction. Until now, it never occurred to me to sell. Quite the opposite: It always occurred to me to buy. I’ve always loved buying wine. Selling them was unthinkable. I wanted to marry these wines, not just have a little fling, only to toss them aside for a new fancy.
So why then am I now selling wine? It’s not because of the money, although that’s always nice to have. Like everyone else, I can always use a little spare change.
I should mention that the wines I sold were among the most expensive in my cellar, rarities that truthfully I could barely afford to buy, but I could not bring myself to resist. They were among the greatest wines in my cellar.” —
I’ve come to abhor the collector mentality. I’m more familiar with obsessive record collectors who flip through vinyl bins at every record store for the next big score. But do they honestly enjoy many of their thousands of records? I know someone who has one of the biggest vinyl collections in the world. Most records are filed and stored away. He can afford these records, and afford someone to catalog and file them.
Make no mistake, this isn’t love. Or at least it isn’t true love of music or wine or whatever the object of obsession. On most Sunday mornings, I play a few of my LPs on the turntable as I prepare and eat breakfast. I have a really small collection, but the records actually get their moment to shine on the turntable. Isn’t that why records were born? Music written and recorded?
If you love something so much that you collect, you only love the objects that can be collected. If you love music, love wine you’d have next to nothing and consume every bit of what you have.
We are fellow time travelers. What could have happened in 80 milliseconds? A lot. How many split second decisions were made in 80 milliseconds or less?
The brain takes 80 milliseconds to assemble the present reality. It takes 20 minutes to know we’ve eaten enough food. How long does it take to realize it’s in love? That it’s wrong and should apologize?
The world is a creepy place and we all made it this way.
There are two kinds of taste, the taste for emotions of surprise and the taste for emotions of recognition.
—Henry James” —
Staring at this quote for five minutes now, I honestly do not know which I want more.
The last taste of something surprising was when I whipped confectioner’s sugar and shortening into frosting that tasted exactly like supermarket cake frosting—feather light, sugary and unmistakeably bad for you. I couldn’t believe I could produce such artificial, corporate deliciousness with my own hands.
The last taste of recognition I had was when I fried mackerel pike and served it with a huge pile of grated daikon. The bitter-peppery flavor of raw daikon tickling the back of my mouth tasted like home. The last time I savored that sensation was probably the last time I had my mother’s home cooking.
This applies to people too. Do I want you to constantly surprise me? Or make me feel like I’m curled up in bed with a book, eyelids drooping around midnight?
Also crucial in the estate’s copyright claims: though King himself claimed copyright of the speech a whole month after he delivered it, his claim was seen as valid because no “tangible” copy of the speech had been distributed before he made his claim. (The ruling was based on previous copyright law, from 1909, not the 1975 law we use today.)
And yet, because CBS settled with the family out of court for an undisclosed sum, the law never fully considered the matter of the speech’s copyright. Today, the audio version of the speech can be hard to come by, and unabridged film footage of it has escaped the cultural memory banks of YouTube.” —
The estate of Martin Luther King, Jr. holds the copyright to his “I Have a Dream” speech until 2038. Video and audio copies of the entire speech are available for $10 from the MLK estate. It seems strange that something so historic and something that was meant to be inclusive is not available freely to the public.
Is the speech intellectual property to be administered, or has is it something bigger, belonging to everyone? I respect the right of the King family to control who uses the speech and for what purpose. Though, I can’t help but feel jipped that I can’t see or hear the speech in its entirety unless I pay up.
An argument for resetting the world records for women’s track and field so only records after random dope testing remain. The gatekeeper International Association of Athletics Federations says there is a statute of limitation of 8 years in expunging records. If you set a record, then test positive or some doping evidence comes to light after 8 years, your record remains in the books no matter what. Is this fair?
iRobot, the makers of Roomba, donated robots to help survey and clean up the Fukushima reactors. Long-ass read, but very intriguing and harrowing first-person account. What would you do if your radiation dosimeter goes off, but your supervisor tells you to keep working?
Mr. Mak said that a man in street clothes entered the store and seemed particularly interested in the handbags and loafers, obviously cardboard, that have print designs that vaguely resemble Louis Vuitton’s and Gucci’s.
“He asked me, ‘How much is this?’ ” recalled Mr. Mak, pointing to a handbag on display. “I said $20, and he pulled out his badge and said, ‘Are you selling this to me?’ And then he arrested me.”
He was held overnight in a local precinct house and then arraigned Wednesday afternoon in Criminal Court at 100 Centre Street, several blocks from the store, before being released.” —
The owner of a store who sells cardboard items, often ersatz designer accessories, was arrested for selling counterfeit items. I’m sure this will get thrown out of court, but isn’t New York beyond this shit? Especially if your beat is Chinatown, you should know about the cardboard funeral props?
Still waiting for integration, I guess.
The international pop superstar and her husband, Rene Angelil, were not at home at the time. Dion and Angelil usually live in Florida but use the Laval residence when they come home to Quebec.
Laval police spokesman Franco Di Genova said the suspect was getting ready to take a nice hot bath when police arrived with a canine unit. “He opened the water faucets, was pouring a nice warmish bath (and) he even managed to eat some pastry that was in the fridge,” Di Genova said.” —
A burglar walks into the Celine Dion residence, eats pastries, draws a bath, gets arrested. I think police blotters should be required to divulge what kind of pastry was consumed by the criminal.
Domino’s thinks “Artisan Pizza” should come in a box with a signature from the store manager. Also they think being an “artisan” doesn’t mean wearing black berets. There is a legit sneak preview/review of the pizza, but I’m just stuck on this postmodern/post-postmodern interpretation of “artisan” as interpreted by Domino’s.
It’s been drilled into me that Domino’s pizza funds anti-abortion activities (which isn’t quite true). Someone else eat this pizza and tell me if it tastes of black berets and tortured semantics/semiotics.
David Rees (of Get Your War On fame) tested a Miles Davis chili recipe, an Elvis fried chicken recipe, and a Dean Martin burger recipe. But who cares about the food because I love his writing—so casual and non-writerly, but so hilarious.
Pigs died for your six-pack abdominals. Dead pigs in a semi-perpetual crunches machine—what atrocities took place in developing the Shake Weight?
Funny thing about crunches and abs: building up your abdominal wall can significantly change the shape of your belly button.
Slice off both ends of the pineapple and cut off the skin. Cut into 40 5 x 1.2cm batons. Refrigerate.
Wash the fennel thoroughly in cold water. Put the fennel and star anise in a container. Place the pineapple batons over the fennel and star anise, leaving space between them so that they will be completely infused with the aroma. Then cover the pineapple with another layer of fennel and star anise. Cover the container with an airtight lid and refrigerate for 7 hours.
Finishing and presentation
Just before serving, open the container and separate the pineapple batons.
Take some fennel sprigs from the container and fill 10 black bowls.
Arrange 4 pineapple batons in each bowl so that they nestle among the fennel and do not touch one another. Finish by placing 3 star anise seeds between the fennel and the pineapple.
Serve on a slate accompanied by silver tweezers.” —
A simple El Bulli recipe of pineapple marinated in fennel frond and star anise. Even then, there is to be NO TOUCHING of the pineapple pieces, I mean, excuse me, batons!!! I’m definitely trying this recipe, but I’m so going to jumble everything together.
Click through to a 15 minute video of UK restaurant critic Jay Rayner (he’s on Top Chef Masters as a judge) visiting the El Bulli kitchen and talking to Ferran Adria. There are a couple more esoteric recipes as well. By the way, this article was published 3 years ago in 2008.