An Ode To Love

A man stranded on a tiny island has nothing but a stick and his imagination. The stick brings that imagination to life for him. Before long, the stick is a stand-in for everything he ever had or ever thought about. Through it, he experiences joy, excitement, humor, rage, despair, disappointment, and even jealousy. That's an awful lot to pack into one wordless cartoon with only one character. Unless you count the stick.

(YouTube link)

An Ode to Love is an award-winning animated short film by Matthew Darragh. -via Laughing Squid  


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Mr. Handsome Needs a Home

The Chatham County (North Carolina) Animal Shelter came into possession of a 31-pound stray cat last week. He soon came to be called Mr. Handsome, and found his own sleeping place on a shelf in the center's office. Although he was obviously fed and loved by someone, his owner has not been found

“We have never had a cat this big in the 10 years I’ve been here,” said Ginny Jenrette of Chatham County Animal Services (CCAS). “I also worked at a veterinary clinic prior to this and the largest cat I had seen there was 26 pounds.”

This feline, which is being kept in an office because he is too large to fit properly inside a standard kennel, weighs in at 31.4 pounds.

The shelter is now looking for a qualified home for Mr. Handsome. To be considered, an applicant must have a veterinarian willing to watch after his health and weight. The application form is here. -via Mashable

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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A Sneak Peek at Justice League

The next DC Comics movie is Justice League. The group established its core characters in Batman v Superman, with a glimpse of Wonder Woman, who we got to know better this summer. Next they will be joined by Aquaman, the Flash, and Cyborg from the comics. An extended preview was released at San Diego Comic Con.

(YouTube link)

From the YouTube page:

Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to find and recruit a team of metahumans to stand against this newly awakened threat. But despite the formation of this unprecedented league of heroes—Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash—it may already be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.

Justice League will be in theaters November 17. -via Tastefully Offensive


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Remembering Hair-Raising Landings at Hong Kong’s Kai Tak Airport

Kai Tak International Airport operated in Hong Kong from 1925 to 1998. It was an unusual airport even for the small planes of 1925, built inside a bowl surrounded by mountains. The city grew up around the airport until it was ringed by skyscrapers as well as mountains. Then as commercial airline traffic increased, a runway was constructed outward into Victoria Harbor in 1958. Runway 13/31 eventually became the single busiest runway in the world, with 36 takeoffs and landings per hour. And those landings were so terrifying, a name was coined for them: the Kai Tak Heart Attack.

An aircraft with clearance to land on Runway 13/31 began its approach across Victoria Harbor, home to one of the world’s busiest ports, and densely populated Kowloon. Upon sighting “Checkerboard Hill”—an orange-and-white painted marker above a park—the pilot veered right. This low-altitude, 47-degree turn took place at nearly 200 miles per hour, just two nautical miles from the runway. From there, the aircraft shot over apartment buildings and bustling streets—in addition to plane-spotters on the roof of Kai Tak’s parking garage, before the wheels touched finally touched down, probably with an audible sigh of relief.

Typhoon season only complicated those maneuvers. Read about the erstwhile Kai Tak airport and see pictures taken through its history at Atlas Obscura.


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A Millennial on Wheel of Fortune

The sad part of this story is that buying a home can often be cheaper than renting an apartment. But good luck getting a down payment and a mortgage when you are on the hook for huge school loans, and good luck finding a job with security in a stable community. This is the latest comic by Dami Lee, inspired by a Tweet from duumb!


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Frank Zappa's Panty Quilt

(Image credit: Flickr user Rian Castillo)

Frank Zappa's 1981 tour featured a musical sequence called "Panty Rap" that you don't want your boss to hear at the workplace, due to the subject matter. He encouraged women to throw their underpants on stage. Many women responded, and bras were often thrown, too. After the tour was over, he commissioned this quilt made of the collected underwear. Emily Alana James is the artist who converted the clothing into a quilt. She tells us about the quilt project in this interview

I was introduced to Frank only because I sent in the message through my friend that I wanted to do the quilt. He would have said yes to anyone who asked. He couldn't have cared less how it turned out, only that he followed through on what he said he would do. After all he told fans to bring underwear and he would have it made into a quilt. He told me he had intended to visit a local college in hope of finding someone. I saved him the trouble, that's all.  

Look closely, and you'll see that the pattern is the queen of spades with Zappa's face.

The finished artwork now hangs in the Hard Rock cafe in Biloxi, Mississippi. -via Bits and Pieces


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Times When Rampant Substance Abuse Led To Cinematic Genius

Some of the greatest works of cinematic genius were created while under the influence, like the original Star Wars trilogy, Cool Runnings and The Highlander, memorable movies the creators may not remember making.

Star Wars character animator Phil Tippett supposedly came up with the Rancor monster's design while on acid after receiving a vision of a creature that looked like "a cross between a bear and a potato". So like this then?

(Image Link)

They're not exactly cinematic genius, but the co-writer of hit family movies like Cool Runnings, Snow Dogs and the the original outlines for Shrek is named Tommy Swerdlow- and he was high on heroin the whole time.

That seems odd for the writer of family friendly flicks, but tons of booze on the set of The Highlander definitely makes sense:

Christopher Lambert, Highlander himself, remembers the extras pounding Scotch between takes, causing them to "[go] at it for real" right there on the set (hopefully he means fighting and not something else). Lambert doesn't say whether he partook, but that probably wouldn't have been a smart idea given that he was trying to act in a language he barely knew.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Connery was the hardest drinker of all. Mulcahy recalls that on the plane ride to the shooting location, Connery produced a bottle of homemade Scotch, which is apparently a thing, and offered him a sip, which "blew his brains out." Later, after a mishap during a scene in which Clancy Brown was supposed to slice a table in two with his sword, a chunk of it nearly took Connery's head off. Brown called a special meeting to apologize to Connery, who waved him off with a cool "Maybe we'll use my stunt double more." That is not the reaction of a man who is not impaired by Scottish moonshine.

See 6 Times Rampant Substance Abuse Led To Cinematic Genius here (NSFW language)


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The Scariest Rides At The Fair, Ranked By An Anxious Man

We are now in the season for county and state fairs, and the rickety traveling carnivals that accompany them. Thrill rides are as popular as ever, with the scariest ones drawing the longest lines. Mark Shrayber is terrified of carnival rides, yet he can't help but ride them. Go figure. In case you haven't been to a carnival in a while, he helpfully describes his experiences with the scariest thrill rides, with videos of each ride in case his description isn't clear enough. He ranked the Cliffhanger as number one.

Sometimes called Superman (although not nearly as scary as the rollercoaster), this ride puts you flat on your stomach and then swings you around higher and higher with each passing second. It’s fun and freeing in theory, but if you’re an anxious person you’ll spend the entire journey wondering whether you’ll a) fall off because you’re not secured in place or b) actually hit the ground when the ride rushes you to meet it face-first.

At one fair, a ride attendant (16, I asked) did not lock down my restraint and then decided not to do a security check because, why bother, you’re just going 40 feet into the sky at high speeds. She started the ride and I had to spin by her three times screaming “I’m going to die!” before she stopped the ride and sauntered by to help. “Whoops,” she said, comforting me. “You have no idea how often that happens.”

That's a little misleading; all eight rides in this list are ranked at number one. Read Shrayber's thrill ride stories, complete with NSFW text, at Uproxx. 

(Image credit: Flickr user Kirt Edblom)     


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Movies That Almost Starred Tom Hanks

Tom Hanks has starred in many high grossing and extremely popular films, movies which will forever be known as "Tom Hanks movies" and therefore impossible to imagine with anyone else in the lead role.

He's also had quite a bit of luck scoring great roles, luck which may have run out had he starred in an awful movie like Super Mario Bros.- his replacement Bob Hoskins called the movie "his biggest disappointment in life."

It's also fun to imagine how different movies like Shawshank Redemption, When Harry Met Sally or Groundhog Day would have looked if they'd starred Tom Hanks:

(Image Link)

On second thought those movies are great the way they are!

See 16 Movies That Almost Starred Tom Hanks at Mental Floss


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Surely Not Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting - Your Wit Is Fast As Lightning


Surely Not Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting by TimArms

Everybody knows the song where they talk about how everybody was kung fu fighting and their moves were fast as lightning and stuff, but doesn't that song seem a bit far fetched to you? I mean, with all the martial arts out there these bad mofos all chose to learn and fight with kung fu? There wasn't one boxer, jiu jitsu grappler or capoeira master in the mix? Man, that sounds like a movie that's missing some key cool, jack, and kung fu ain't the end all, y'all! Martial arts are badass, whether they kung fu or not, so open your minds to other fighting styles and you'll find everybody wants to do their own thang!

Get geared up for action with this Surely Not Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting t-shirt by TimArms, it's a funny way to say "I get it, kung fu is cool, but all martial arts are cool, fool!"

Visit TimArms's NeatoShop for more knockout designs:

Muay Thai, White Version Conor Mcgregor, Green Splash The Guard Father, Jiu Jitsu, White Eat Sleep Breathe Jiu Jitsu Shirt

View more designs by TimArms | More Funny T-shirts | New T-Shirts

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British Airways Safety Video

British Airways teamed up with Comic Relief to make a new flight safety video based on the premise of people auditioning for a role in the safety video. A selection of top British performers do their best, but the director (comedian Asim Chaudhry) is more impressed with some than with others.

(YouTube link)

Honestly, when Sir Ian McKellan tells you to put on your oxygen mask, you listen. The video is actually a combination flight safety video and fundraising appeal for the charity Flying Start. It will be shown on flights beginning in September. There's also a behind-the-scenes look and some outtakes here.


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What Would Happen If Fictional Villains Actually Won

Storytellers love to stress that any evil being who threatens the heroes must be eliminated for the good of us all, but since the stories end with goodness prevailing we never get to see what life under an evil thumb would look like.

It's said to be horrible, with lots of enslavement, torture and skin flaying, but the baddies who simply work you to death don't really seem so bad after all, since it's easy to both skip out on work and fake your own death.

Bowser can't even keep track of the stuff that goes on in his own castle so life under his rule would be pretty much the same, only with more turtles and spikes.

And, as this JHALL comic shows, Loki would realize he made a horrible mistake ten minutes after he subjugated humanity- because humans are awful!

See What Would Happen If Fictional Villains Actually Won here


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Dali's Mustache is Still Intact

Surrealist painter Salvador Dali died in 1989 and was buried under the Dali Theatre-Museum in Figueres, Catalonia, Spain. For the past ten years, Maria Pilar Abel has been fighting to be recognized as Dali's daughter. She claims she is the product of a liaison between Dali and her mother in 1955, which would make her Dali's only child. To research the claim, Dali's crypt was opened Thursday after the museum closed in order to extract tissue for a DNA test.     

Narcís Bardalet, the embalmer who tended Dalí’s body after his death in 1989 and helped with the exhumation on Thursday night, said he had been delighted to see the surrealist’s best-known feature once again.

“His moustache is still intact, [like clock hands at] 10 past 10, just as he liked it. It’s a miracle,” he told the Catalan radio station RAC1.

Otherwise, Dali's body had hardened so much that an electric saw was needed to take samples. After the DNA test, the samples will be returned to the crypt. The results of the DNA test will take about a month. Read more on the story at The Guardian. -via Metafilter


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Celebrities Drawn In the Negative

Liam York (misteryorkie) is a self-taught artist who draws portraits of celebrities in inverted light. They are almost recognizable, but when photographed, and then rendered in a negative, they become true to form!

See more of York's art at DeviantART. You can buy prints of his work here. -via Laughing Squid


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The Walking Dead Season 8 Official Comic-Con Trailer

The first trailer for season eight of The Walking Dead, which premieres on October 22, was unveiled at San Diego Comic Con on Friday. This video contains NSFW language, despite the fact that it's from a TV show.

(YouTube link)

There's a lot of action, explosions, shooting, and an inspirational speech or two, but not nearly enough zombies. But then, it's only a few minutes of clips that try not to give too much away.  Every frame will be examined and speculated on in the next few days. -via Geeks Are Sexy


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The Passage of Time

This is a really clever illustration of how we build a life and build a legacy. It also shows how what we do affects other people in ways we cannot always predict. If that legacy was a bit more solid, it would be easier for the next generation to build upon it instead of starting all over. This is the latest from John McNamee at Pie Comic.


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Why a Total Solar Eclipse is Such a Big Deal

The total solar eclipse that will cross the U.S. on August 21st is a big deal. "Eclipse" is not so rare, but "solar" is, and "total" even more so. It doesn't happen often, and the view is expected to be spectacular. Get a preview in this video from Vox.

(YouTube link)

Sadly, my plan to drive two hours or so to see the eclipse has been canceled. August 21st is move-in day at my youngest kid's new college. But we will see a partial solar eclipse, which will cover all of the lower 48. And if you live too far away to get to the path of totality, you'll still see plenty of reports on the internet. -via Kottke


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A Photographic History Of The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus

The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus we once knew and loved officially packed up its tent for the last time on May 21st, after 146 years of putting on the Greatest Show On Earth.

Low ticket sales, restrictions on animal acts and the increased cost of operation caused Ringling Bros. to derail, and now we're left with nothing but the memories of what went on under the Big Top for over a century.

Don't get me wrong, it's a good thing we now have stricter laws regarding animal acts, but I'm always sad to see a part of our history fade away and can't help but feel bad for kids who won't get to see the circus come to town.

BuzzFeed put together a high-flying assortment of photos that span the one and a half centuries of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey history, so we can look back on what made the circus so great even after it's gone for good.

See This Is What Over 100 Years Of Circus History Look Like here


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Our New Favorite Alien from Star Wars

The eighth episode of the Star Wars saga, The Last Jedi, will hit theaters in December. One of the characters, seen in the behind-the-scenes video released last week, has already drawn considerable notice around the internet because he's so cute. He's a porg on the planet Ahch-To that Luke Skywalker lives on. Pablo Hidalgo from the Lucasfilm Story Group explains what a porg is.

Porgs are native to Ahch-To, and can be found dwelling along the cliffs of the island where Luke and Rey are. In many ways, they’re the Star Wars version of puffins. They build nests. They can fly. Their babies are called porglets.

We don't know much about the role porgs will play in The Last Jedi, but it's fun to speculate that Luke talked to them in his solitude, like Tom Hanks talked to Wilson the volleyball in Castaway. One thing you can be sure of is that porgs will be a part of Star Wars toy merchandising this Christmas. -via Uproxx


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Seat Belts And Plane Crashes

When I hear a pilot tell us to return to our seats and put on our seat belts I imagine a major turbulence is headed our way and they want us to strap in so we don't go flying around the cabin.

This isn't necessarily what the pilot is thinking, usually they just use that buckled strap of fabric as a crowd control device, keeping us seated and the aisles clear in case the s#%t hits the turbine.

Because as we all know, and this Extra Fabulous Comics comic shows, that strap attached to our seats isn't going to do a damn bit of good if the plane crashes- but it'll make the clean up crew's job easier!

-Via Geeks Are Sexy


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Bobbies On The Beat - A Different Kind Of Cop Rock


Bobbies on the Beat by stíobhart matulevicz

They say there's a frustrated drummer lurking inside every Bobbie on the beat, and that's why they enjoy taking their baton to people's skulls- they're just trying to hammer out a rhythm they've got floating around in their mind. And if you think about it drummers and coppers have a lot in common- they both like beating on skins, they both get really sweaty and make funny faces while "performing", and they both have a beat they have to stick to or else they'll get fired.

Add some irreverent humor to your wardrobe with this Bobbies on the Beat t-shirt by Stiobhart Matulevicz, featuring a fun design a select few with your same sense of humor will find hilarious!

Visit stíobhart matulevicz's official website and Twitter, then head on over to his NeatoShop for more delightful designs:

Pope Francis - Singing Celtic Art - Interlaced Dog Pattern Dad's Army Inspired Brexit Celtic Art - Dog Triskele

View more designs by stíobhart matulevicz | More Funny T-shirts | New T-Shirts

Are you a professional illustrator or T-shirt designer? Let's chat! Sell your designs on the NeatoShop and get featured in front of tons of potential new fans on Neatorama!


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Our Favorite Stay at Home Dads in Movies

When the concept of a stay-at-home dad was rare (and considered odd), the character was played in the movies as comedy. It still is occasionally, but as it becomes more common for fathers to take care of their children while mothers earn a living, the idea spread to other genres. An overview of stay-at-home dad characters in movies spans several types of movie, whether the father is a housekeeper, remote worker, retired, or just unemployed. See clips from five of those very different films featuring stay-at-home dads at TVOM.


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Fixing Mistakes Most Beginner Cooks Make

Cooking is easy once you get the hang of it, but getting the hang of it usually means means burning a few entrees, making dishes that taste awful the first time around and/or serving undercooked meat and getting a gut ache.

But thanks to the smorgasbord of information available online newbie cooks can hit the kitchen with a better understanding of what and what not to do and avoid the common mistakes beginner cooks make.

(YouTube Link)

This Brothers Green Eats video is a great primer on the art of cooking, but if you ain't got time to watch a video here's a list of their cooking fixes:

-Via Boing Boing

We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

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Swedish Train to be Named Trainy McTrainface

They knew what they were getting into when they posted an online poll to name a train. And the Swedish rail line MTR Express is ready to go with it. And it's proper to give props to online poll contributors after the British government backed out of naming a research ship Boaty McBoatface.

"(This is) news that will be received with joy by many, not just in Sweden," MTR wrote in a statement.

The train will run between the Swedish capital Stockholm and Gothenburg, the country's second-biggest city.

Trainy McTrainface won 49 percent of the vote, coming in ahead of Hakan, Miriam and Poseidon. -via reddit

(Image credit: MTR Express‏)


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Johnny Depp Drops Out And Breaks Stuff

Johnny Depp is one of Hollywood's most recognizable actors, and one of the most popular by far, but back before he had achieved superstar status he was a guitar obsessed teen who couldn't tune in to school- so he dropped out.

He discussed his school days and a certain hotel room incident with Carl Fussman back in 2009, then Quoted Studios cartoonified the interview for their Blank on Blank series. (NSFW language)

(YouTube Link)


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How a Group of ’70s Radicals Tried (and Failed) to Invade Disneyland

In 1970, protests against the Vietnam War were at their height. Antiwar demonstrators had learned that publicity mattered more than sheer numbers, and elaborate stunts were likely to be covered in newspapers and on TV. The Yippies (Youth International Party) in particular were good at coming up with ridiculously disruptive stunts that often overwhelmed the message they were trying to send, and only confused those outside the counterculture. And that included the plan to take over Disneyland on August 6.

In the lead-up to the so-called “International Pow Wow Day,” organizers mounted an impressive publicity campaign. The Yippies distributed stacks of flyers and got several different iterations printed in underground newspapers. One such flyer, which appeared in the The Berkeley Tribe in late July, featured Mickey Mouse waving a top hat and a machine gun. But the most oft-quoted flyer listed a schedule of outlandish “events” for participating Yippies. As Koenig recounts, it included a “Black Panther Hot Breakfast” at 9 a.m. at Aunt Jemima’s Pancake House, a women’s liberation “rally to liberate Minnie Mouse in front of Fantasyland” at noon, a “mid-day feast” barbecue of Porky Pig, and a late afternoon infiltration of Tom Sawyer Island. “Declaring a free state, brothers and sisters will then have a smoke-in and festival,” the flyer read. “Get it over on Disneyland, August 6. YIPPIE!”

Disneyland was ready. Park security was beefed up and extra managers called to duty. Local police departments sent hundreds of officers to stand ready outside the park. But the actual event was far from what was planned, on either side. Read about the Disneyland invasion of 1970 at Atlas Obscura.

(Image credit: Van Eaton Galleries)


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A Dark Starcraft Fan Film By Freddie Wong

The Starcraft series presents intergalactic conflict to gamers in a fresh new way, and even though it hasn't inspired as many fan creations as other Blizzard franchises it has inspired a few pretty great fan films.

But none of those Starcraft fan films are as dark as Freddie Wong's The Rush, which gives us a ground view of what it feels like to be caught in the middle of a zerg rush. It made me feel bad for all the innocent digital people in video game land who lose their little virtual lives every time we play.

(YouTube Link)

-Via GeekTyrant


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The Frozen Mistake That Made a Fortune

Frozen dessert on a stick is a wonderful way to beat the heat, even if it drips sticky sugar all over you. But where did Popsicles come from?

The popular origin story for this frozen treat goes as follows: In 1905 in San Francisco, 11-year-old Frank Epperson accidentally left a wooden stirrer in a glass of soda powder and water on his porch one freezing night. The next morning, Epperson woke up to discover he had invented the Popsicle — something he initially named the Epsicle, a combination of his own name and “icicle.” Incredibly, it wasn’t until 1923 that it dawned on him that this could be a money-spinner, and he changed the name to Popsicle, reflecting that it was essentially frozen soda pop (early adverts billed it “a drink on a stick”). Fortunately, no one had a similar brain wave in the almost 20 years Epperson sat on it. But, despite patenting the Popsicle in 1924, he couldn’t quite break even and sold his idea to the Joe Lowe Corporation — which went on to make a fortune from the frozen treat.

Critics found problems with the origin story, both in the details and in the fact that frozen treats on a stick had been around for decades. But no matter, Epperson coined the word "Popsicle," and to this day it's a trademark worth suing over. There are other milestones in the history of the Popsicle, which you can read at Ozy.

We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

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We All Have Hobbies -And This Swan's is Gardening

(Video Link)

Black swans get a bad name, but there is dark side to their beauty. In fact, they can have great personalities and even fascinating hobbies, like this swan who likes to garden in his free time. It seems this isn't even such a rare hobby for black swans, but I can't tell you if they all keep such a well-groomed garden

Via Pets Lady

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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10 Ridiculous Feats of Literature

Instead of judging works of literature based on their artistic merit, we’ve decided to rank them by degree of difficulty. These 10 authors may not be Shakespeare, but they sure had vaulting ambitions.

1. The Story That Will Never Be an e-Book
Gadsby by Ernest Vincent Wright

Some might call Gadsby a “love” story. But Ernest Vincent Wright wouldn’t have used that word. Instead, he described his novel as a story of “strong liking” and “throbbing palpitation.” That’s because in 1939, Wright gave himself one restriction: He promised to write Gadsby without using the letter E.

Wright wanted to prove that a great author could work around such a restriction and still tell a gripping story. To prevent any stray Es from entering the text, he tied down his typewriter’s E key, and then put his expansive vocabulary to the test. The result is an astounding feat of verbal gymnastics. While vividly describing a wedding scene, Wright manages to avoid the words “bride,” “ceremony,” and even “wedding” (he calls it “a grand church ritual”). To explain away the verbosity of the language, he uses a narrator whose poor command of English and circumlocution even irritates the story’s other characters.

When the book was announced, one skeptic attacked Wright in a letter, claiming that the feat was impossible. “All right,” replied Wright in the book’s intro, “the impossible has been accomplished.” Sadly, Wright didn’t live long enough to revel in Gadsby’s critical acclaim. He died the year the book was published.

2. The Tale Told in the Blink of an Eye
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby

Many authors have struggled through illness and injury to write their masterpieces, but none more so than Jean-Dominique Bauby, editor-in-chief of French fashion magazine Elle.

In 1995, at the age of 43, Bauby suffered a major stroke and slipped into a coma. He regained consciousness two days later, but his entire body—with the exception of his left eyelid—was paralyzed.

Continue reading

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