We’ve all heard of people doing it, we’ve all done it on the sly once or twice in our life, and we’ve all heard the urban legends about the colorful chemical that identifies the culprit.
I’m talking, of course, about peeing in the pool, and up until now it has been seen as a harmless, albeit gross, thing to do when you’re swimming those summer days away and don’t want to get out just to empty your bladder.
This is a cake. Really. BethAnn Goldberg of Studio Cake can make a cake look like anything you want. But then again, she’s a former NASA engineer, so she could probably make anything she wants. See her cakes that would be mistaken for real shoes, cameras, books, sandwiches, board games, and more at My Modern Met.
When his dog was sedated after a surgery, Brooklyn tattoo artist Mistah Metro decided to take the opportunity to make it the coolest dog of all New York City: by giving it a tattoo!
In an Instagram post that has since been deleted, Mistah Metro proclaimed that "My dog is cooler than yours!" The dog had her spleen removed, the artist explained, and the vet let him tattoo her while she was under. Mistah Metro chose the classic Cupid-style heart with the names "Alex" and "Mel" (for himself and his wife).
When the photo went viral, animal lovers were predictably outraged.
Tattooing a dog is actually not exactly a rare practice - the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) itself does it all the time, but for a very different reason, as reported by Gothamist:
The ASPCA condones the use of tattooing for only identification purposes following spay or neuter surgery. This practice helps animal welfare professionals clearly identify animals that have been altered, thereby preventing unnecessary future surgeries. This painless procedure is performed by a licensed veterinarian or veterinary technician while the animal is under anesthesia. The marks are very small and have a specific purpose, which is to avoid inflicting undue pain and stress later if that animal is unknowingly brought in for a spay surgery a second time.
Tattooing an animal for the vain sake of joy and entertainment of the owner - without any regard for the well-being of the animal - is not at all comparable to the incident in question and is not something the ASPCA supports.
What do you think? Is it wrong to tattoo your dog?
Playing Star Wars with your kids is so much more fun when you can summon the power of… static electricity! Your kids may be impressed beyond belief, or they may be fighting off nightmares afterward. This moment of inspired scientific role-playing is brought to you by Lunarbaboon.
Star Wars themed stop motion shorts have looked better, had more of a plot and come in longer in length than Training Day by John Punsalan, but this short has something the rest are lacking- Burgess Meredith as the voice of Yoda.
Training Day gives you both that “You're gonna eat lightnin' and you're gonna crap thunder!” feeling and a healthy dose of action figure based geekery, and it proves that Burgess Meredith would have made a great replacement for Frank Oz, and a very inspiring voice for Luke to have in his corner.
Do you wear your childish, sometimes unruly, behavior as a badge of honor? Show your brat pride with a pair of Brat Socks from the NeatoShop. This playful pair of socks features hot pink and green stripes and the word "BRAT."
Be sure to check out the NeatoShop for more great Footwear.
Today Bryan Cranston turns 58 years old, and we wish him a very happy birthday. In honor of the occasion, Uproxx has posted 20 Times You Might Have Seen Bryan Cranston On Screen And Not Realized It. Oh sure, you know Walter White, and the dad on Malcolm in the Middle, and he’s in the new Godzilla film. But he was also on everything else- from Baywatch to the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers! The image here is from Babylon 5.
American is not only a nationality, a state of mind and something people shout at Border Patrol agents when they cross the border from Mexico, it’s also a popular party theme around the world.
People love throwing American parties, which generally consist of eating popcorn, hamburgers and other “American” food, drinking out of red plastic cups or beer bongs, with flag and red white and blue decorations everywhere and partygoers all dressed in American fashions.
They look like a cross between a high school sleepover, a frat party and a costume party all rolled up into one great excuse to get drunk, which is something Americans love to do when they throw their own American parties. See more pictures at Buzzfeed.
The researchers were precise in their methodology:
We excluded cases in which injury was related to swallowing items other than swords, such as . . . jack hammers.
As well they should!
Brian Witcombe, a physician, and Dan Meyer, an executive in a professional organization for sword swallowers, published an article in a 2006 issue of the British Medical Journal. It evaluated the health risks of sheathing a sword inside the human esophagus. They surveyed 46 sword swallowers and determined that performers increase the likelihood of injury by “adding embellishments to their performance.”
Who engages in this performing art? Amy Kraft of The Week attended a meeting of sword swallowers. It was one of many held simultaneously at Ripley’s Believe It or Not locations around the United States. She writes that sword swallowing originated in India about 4,000 years ago. It requires careful and rigorous training:
To get there, you must first learn to suppress the gag reflex in the back of your throat, which sword swallowers work on for years. Then you have to flip back your epiglottis and relax several other involuntary muscles in the esophagus, which winds past major organs, including the heart. Finally, to get the sword into the stomach you have to relax the lower sphincter muscle and repress the stomach's retch reflex.
Deirdre Loughridge and Thomas Patteson curate the Museum of Imaginary Musical Instruments, where you can read about fictional music makers, concept instruments, and fanciful sound technology, from ancient times to today. One of the exhibits is the Tower Orchestra, conceived by Adolphe Sax, who also invented the saxophone.
With the tower orchestra, Sax aimed to combine a full range of tone colors with unprecedented loudness. The same aim animated the concerts of massive orchestral and vocal forces that featured in concert life of the period (see Berlioz’s “Euphonia”). But Sax noted that multiplying the number of instrumentalists did not proportionately increase the volume of sound: with such enormous ensembles, players far away from the audience were heard with less intensity than those closer. Sax’s envisioned solution was to build resonators of enormous size, activated by superhuman forces, and mounted high above the city so that their tones would spread far and wide in all directions. Involving towers linked by suspension bridges, steam engines and metal ropes set resounding by compressed air, it was a solution that applied industrial developments to musical purposes. To Sax’s contemporaries, the plan was equal parts genius and insanity – an idea ahead of its time. As Sax’s friend Savart reportedly told him, “nothing is simpler, but keep your thoughts to yourself; for if you share them before another fifty years of progress, they’ll take you for a madman.”
Other exhibits range from the mystical to the prescient, like the Ocular Harpsichord, which was a thought experiment about converting colors into musical tones. It was never built, but it foreshadows the modern idea of converting non-audio data into music. Read more about the Tower Orchestra and other instruments at the Museum of Imaginary Musical Instruments. -via the Presurfer
There’s all kinds of Game of Thrones inspired merch out there, from clothing to action figures, but the latest in the long line of official merch is also the strangest- an officially licensed hip hop album with tracks by Common, Big Boi and Daddy Yankee.
The mixtape is called “Catch the Throne”, and it was created to appeal to hip hop fans that might not be familiar with the show, encouraging them to catch up on the show before the fourth season begins.
Even though it’s just a musical advertisement for HBOGO and VIBE magazine the tracks aren’t half bad, and it will soon be available to download for free via Soundcloud so you can’t beat the price!
The National Science Foundation recently released results of their science test that showed Americans sadly lacking in basic science knowledge. We cringed at the fact that one in four Americans did not know that the Earth revolves around the sun. So how hard is the test? When I saw the opportunity to sample it, I thought, “How fun!” But there are only ten questions, and to Neatorama readers they would be so extremely simple you would all get ten out of ten right.
However, under each answer, we find out how the average Americans polled scored on each, which is sobering. More than half the respondents did not know what lasers are made of. The answers also have some neat explanations in the form of videos. And the comments are what you’d expect -half argue about two questions on religious grounds, and the other half are pedantic science nerds who argue about the exact wording of a question. See those questions at PolicyMic. -via Digg
And since September, he has three daughters: the triplets Kamali, Zalika, and Angalia. The three cubs are almost weaned now, and this past week they met their father for the first time. The first meeting was inside, away from the public. Zawadi Mungu was wary at first, but was soon grooming the cubs himself. Afterward, the whole family made their first public appearance together in the outdoor enclosure. The cubs wanted to play with dad, while their mother Neka and "aunt" Kya watched close by.
Zawadi Mungu was surrounded by five females, but he took it in stride. The little snarls he gives the cubs are very inhibited. They have yet to see their father in full apex predator mode. You can keep up with the lion cubs’ development at Facebook. -via Viral Viral Videos
When I was a kid, a race car bed or a princess dresser was pretty much as cool as furniture could get. But not only do kids today have more awesome commercially available options, thanks to Etsy they now have all kinds of one-of-a-kind options available as well.
From ice cream truck beds to Rainbow Dash rocking horses, we've compiled an epic list of some of the most unique kids' furniture Etsy has to offer over on Homes and Hues: 13 Cool Piecesof Kids' Furniture on Etsy
Frozen won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature at the 2014 Academy Awards, which came as no surprise, but in the category of Best Animated Short the victor, which seemed to blow people’s minds, was a quirky short called Mr. Hublot.
Mr. Hublot ran up against Get A Horse!, a new Mickey Mouse cartoon drawn in the old noodle limbed style of the original Steamboat Willie cartoons;Feral, which was lauded and applauded by the animation community as a whole leading up to the awards ceremony; Room on a Broom, which is an adaptation of the children's book with the same name; and Possessionsby Shuhei Morita, which is his first Academy Award nomination and part of the Short Peace film omnibus.
If you think the Internet came out of Silicon Valley, that NASA planned the first satellite to orbit Earth, or that IBM created the modern computer—think again. Each one of these breakthroughs was conceived at RAND, a shadowy think tank in Santa Monica, California.
The Intimidation Factor
Rand rose out of the ashes of World War II. After witnessing the success of the Manhattan Project—the $2 billion initiative that created the first atomic bomb—a five-star Air Force general named Henry “Hap” Arnold (pictured) concluded that America needed a team of great minds to keep the country’s technology ahead of the rest of the world. In 1946, he gathered together a small group of scientists and $10 million in funding and started RAND (which stands for Research and Development). He even convinced a family friend, aircraft magnate Donald Douglas, to house the project at his factory in Santa Monica.
After a few short months, RAND got the attention of academics, politicians, and military strategists alike by issuing a prophetic study called “Preliminary Design of an Experimental World-Circling Spaceship.” At the time, rocket science was still in its infancy, so RAND’s call for an orbiting space station was revolutionary. Not only did the think tank specify the kind of fuel the spaceship would need and how quickly it could be built, but it also outlined how the station could predict the weather, transform long-distance communication, and, most importantly, intimidate our rivals abroad. If America could put a satellite into space, what else was she capable of?
Although President Truman passed on the space station, the military fell in love with RAND. Through Hap’s connections, the Air Force quickly became the think tank’s main contractor, and RAND began consulting on everything from propeller turbines to missile defense. Before long, the organization was so flush with contracts that it had to hire hundreds of additional researchers to keep up. In recruitment ads, RAND bragged about its intellectual genealogy, tracing a direct line from its president, Frank Collbohm, to Isaac Newton. Whether or not that claim was true, the institute secured a reputation as the place to dream up new ways to wage wars and keep enemies at bay.
By the 1960s, America’s rivals were paying attention. The Soviet newspaper Pravda nicknamed RAND “the academy of science and death and destruction.” American outfits preferred to call them the “wizards of Armageddon.”
The Soviets had good reason to worry about RAND. In 1957, the Air Force hired the think tank to create spy satellites.
The sturdier fishermen of the Upper Midwest of the United States are fond of venturing out to iced-over lakes. Fishing requires time and patience. Ice fishing requires both while enduring cold temperatures. That’s why many drag shacks onto the ice, where they can enjoy essential amenities, such as beer and heaters.
But now these ice fishermen can enjoy shacks far superior to crude wooden structures. Ice Castle Fish Houses, a company in Montevideo, Minnesota, builds veritable ice fishing mansions.
They come with full kitchens, showers, satellite television and beds. There are even air conditioners, which could really come in handy down here in Texas.
When it’s time to actually fish, just pull up a comfortable chair, open a plug in the floor and drop down a line.
Take just a minute for a happiness break. Mike and Caroline named their new puppy Tobias. No plot here, just an adorably photogenic puppy frolicking through a gorgeous landscape accompanied by bouncy music. That's definitely worth a couple of minutes! And you'll have a smile on your face afterward. -via Tastefully Offensive
Run for your lives! No, hide and be really quiet! The cats are coming, and they’re as big as a dinosaur of some sort in this remix of Jurassic Park, featuring cats in the roles of the raptors. -via Buzzfeed
IBM calls the project “cognitive cooking.” Chefs often think of combining different ingredients in different amounts and cooking them at different ways. Watson can do that, too, but much, much faster. IBM researcher Florian Pinel says that Watson can contemplate the effect of trillions of culinary variations in order to devise optimal recipes. The result of Watson’s efforts are a Swiss-Thai asparagus quiche and an Austrian chocolate burrito (above photo).
IBM is exhibiting the recipes with a food truck that it takes on the road. Recently, it was at the IBM Pulse Conference in Las Vegas.
The Simpsons couch gag intro has been recreated, interpreted and totally transformed by many of the greatest animators in the world, including Bill Plympton, John Kricfalusi, and the crew from Robot Chicken, and now Sylvain Chomet has applied his signature style to the gag for an upcoming episode.
Sylvain is best known as the director of The Triplets of Belleville and The Illusionist, and when Matt Groening asked him to create a couch gag sequence for an episode which will air on March 9th he jumped at the chance to do The Simpsons his way.
Sylvain’s incredibly unique style may make the animation on The Simpsons look pretty crappy in comparison, but nobody watches The Simpsons to be wowed by the art style, right?
Artists Davide Luciano and Claudia Ficca set mouse traps that could easily trap humans. Luciano came up with the idea after spending a week photographing cheeses for advertisements.
Ficca, a food stylist, designed the miniature dishes. Together, the couple made ten images of traps for mice with sophisticated tastes. You can see more of them at Foodiggity. I’ll probably break my finger in the sushi one pictured above.
P.S. Be sure to check out another inventive project by Luciano and Ficca: using potholes as an artistic background.
Artist Irma Gruenholz creates illustrations in clay, which may lead to the question- doesn’t that mean she creates sculptures?
The answer is yes and no- yes they are clay sculptures, all three dimensional and stuff, but these dioramas are meant to be viewed as a full scene like an illustrations so no, they’re not what you would normally think of as a simple sculpture.
Irma’s whimsical scenes are full of colorful characters, silly humor and intriguing imagery that is enhanced by the sculptural quality of the elements in each scene. And although these scenes could have been drawn in 2D, or created in a 3D program, there's something much more endearing about the fact that Irma chose clay as her medium.
You may have heard the news that the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is getting an overhaul. The essay portion that was added in 2005 will be made optional, and the rest of the test is going back to the old 1600-point scale. Questions will be replaced to bring them more in line with what students are being taught in the classroom, to try to level the playing field that has been upset in recent years by students who can afford test tutoring. Why? Because students, parents, teachers, and even colleges don’t like it. It’s stressful, interferes with regular classwork, and doesn’t even predict college success.
A growing number of colleges and universities, frustrated by the minimal change to the SAT when it was revised in 2005 and motivated by a report issued in 2008 by the National Association for College Admission Counseling (Nacac), began to eliminate the SAT and its competitor, the A.C.T., as admission requirements, following the lead of several small, liberal-arts colleges that did so years before. The authors of the Nacac report cited a University of California study, which characterized the SAT as a “relatively poor predictor of student performance” and questioned the tendency of colleges to rely on the SAT as “one of the most important admission tools.” (Many of the schools that dropped test requirements saw spikes in their applications, at least in the first year.)
Around the time the report came out — and following the publication of “The Power of Privilege,” by the Wake Forest University sociology professor Joseph A. Soares, an account of the way standardized tests contributed to discriminatory admissions policies at Yale — Wake Forest became the first highly rated institution (it regularly appears as a Top 30 university on the U.S. News & World Report college rankings) to announce a test-optional admissions policy. Follow-up studies at Wake Forest showed that the average high-school G.P.A. of incoming freshmen increased after the school stopped using standardized-test scores as a factor. Seventy-nine percent of its 2012 incoming class was in the top 10 percent of their high-school classes. Before going test-optional, that figure was in the low 60s. In addition, the school became less homogeneous. “The test highly correlates with family income,” says Soares, who also edited a book that, in part, examines the effects of making the SAT optional at the University of Georgia, Johns Hopkins University and Wake Forest. “High-school grades do not.” He continued, “We have a lot more social, racial and lifestyle diversity. You see it on campus. Wake Forest was a little too much like a J. Crew catalog before we went test-optional.”
The new test will not be introduced until the spring of 2016 -too late for all my children. Only time will tell if the changes are an improvement. The New York Times has the story of how the SAT became something other than what it was intended to be, and how the changes for 2016 came about. -via Digg
What kind of companies top the list of political campaign contributions
in your state's last election cycle? Mother
Jones took the data from Follow
The Money, a nonpartisan and nonprofit organization that compiles
a database of verifiable campaign finance contributions across the 50
states for the 2012 election, and came up with the map above.
The data is admittedly incomplete: Mother Jones limited their search
to the top business in each state and excluded contributions from unions,
law firms, nonprofits, and PACs.
It's not surprising that gambling dominated the political contributions
in Nevada, but I was surprised to find that it also dominated in Rhode
Island. I'm also surprised to find that finance companies dominated the
political contributions in only 4 states - why did I think it would've
been in more places?
Real Estate companies pay the highest corporate campaign contributions
in 14 states, health-related companies in 13, and energy companies in
12. Tech and telecom dominated in 3 whereas manufacturing in only two.
See which type of company dominated your state's politics over at Mother
I love these lamps! They're charming, functional and probably terribly hot to the touch. I'm not sure who made them, but my friend Marilyn Bellamy thinks that they can be traced back to a company called Balloonatics Enterprises.