It looks like Carroll Spinney is playing both ends in this vintage photograph! But you can hardly blame him for not completely changing between scenes when he had to play two roles. Spinney played both Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street for years. At age 84, he is only semi-retired now. He started puppeteering when he was only eight years old, and after years of professional work, almost missed the chance to become a Muppeteer.  

Spinney first met Jim Henson in 1962 at a puppeteering festival, where Henson asked if he would like to "talk about the Muppets". As Spinney failed to realize the question was an employment offer, the conversation never came to pass.[6]

In 1969, Spinney performed at a Puppeteers of America festival in Utah. His show was a mixture of live actors and puppets but was ruined by an errant spotlight that washed out the animated backgrounds. Henson was once again in attendance and noticed Spinney's performance. "I liked what you were trying to do," Henson said, and he asked once more if they could "talk about the Muppets". This time, they did have the conversation, and Spinney joined the Muppeteers full-time by late 1969.[7]

-via Wil Wheaton

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Succulent Cupcakes

WillieB87's wife loves succulent plants, is pregnant, and yesterday was her birthday. So these cupcakes are perfect for her! And that's frosting, not fondant. Someone offered congratulations for getting them home in one piece, and then we found out that he made them himself! That's some good work. And a man who will go that distance to surprise his wife for her birthday, well, he's a keeper.  

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Cat Playing Behind the TV

FutonSpecialOps shared this picture of his cat. What do you see? At first glance, I thought they had a transparent TV. No, that's a human body! Oh yeah, his wife took the picture, and that's her reflection. She just thought the cat looked cute, so she grabbed her phone to snap a "Kilroy was here" picture. Since the TV isn't on, it's acting as a mirror. Notice the space between her arm and the chair looks like the cat's front leg. So part of the picture is a selfie, the other part is a cat. Together, it's an illusion. That's three of the most popular pictures posted on the internet, all in one. -via reddit

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When the Dishwasher is Mad at You

Calling names, now huh? I've got enough problems without appliances getting an attitude. There's a perfectly logical explanation. "Slut" mean "finished" in Danish and Swedish. In Norwegian, it would say "slutt." I don't know how you would say finished in Finnish. -via reddit

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What the Super Blue Blood Moon Looked Like

Did you manage to see the lunar eclipse this morning? I was in a position to see only a small part of it before moonset (which is variable in a mountain area), and it was cloudy anyway. Peter Katkov woke up at 3AM this morning in California to see the super blue blood moon and take some photographs. This one is stacked, showing the progression of the moon and how it changed color as it dipped under the shadow of the earth. He was so proud, he posted it at reddit. He gives some technical information on how he took it, too. There are a couple of other pictures of the moon at his Instagram gallery.

(Image credit: Peter Katkov)

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Escalator Illusion

Let's take a ride on the escalator at Le Bon Marché in Paris! The escalator didn't look like this until Argentine artist Leandro Erlich (previously at Neatorama) got hold of it recently. His illusion art is now on display all over the French department store.

Erlich has paid homage to the City of Light’s changing skies by filling its windows with wispy cloudlike shapes. Surreal cloud formations will be projected on a giant screen erected under the store’s glass roof. Meanwhile, a bank of fake elevators promises to further scramble visitors’ perception.

“I am mainly interested in transforming elements that you believe can’t be transformed, can’t be different. It’s about the utopia of presenting the possibility of transforming what exists into something else, and this action invites us to imagine reality in a different way,” the artist told WWD.

The exhibition titled Sous le Ciel (Under the Sky) will be on display until February 18. Read more about the art installation at WWD. -via TYWKIWDBI

(Image credit: Gabriel de La Chapelle)

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Your Attention and Patience is Required to Read the Sign

A notice of a public hearing in Hempstead, New York, is impossible to read. Don't even try it, you might hurt yourself. It's not just a design gone wrong. This is an example of malicious compliance, or following the letter of the law while undermining the spirit of the law, like the "small print" on a contract that gets smaller every year. Yes, they were required by law to post the notice of a public hearing, but you can tell they really don't want anyone to attend. The font is exactly as tall as required, but so narrow as to resemble a barcode more than text. If you really want to read the sign, here is a stretched version.  -via reddit

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Guess What Creature This Is

The picture may not be any help, but you can see the video of this creature at Imgur. The moving picture will eventually reveal the type of animal to you, but try out your detective skills by guessing what it is during the first ten seconds or so. Were you correct? Me, neither. -via TYWKIWDBI

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Family Selfie

Redditor AnarchoCapitalist caught a great picture of himself and his kids following behind (only the first two are his). Only in hindsight did he consider what could possibly go wrong. If he had lost the grip on his phone, would it have hit the child behind him? Or would it have flown away from the ride and injured someone else? In any case, it would have been a disaster because the phone isn't yet completely paid for. But you have to admit, it's a great image. And probably the last chance to get it, since he doesn't ever want to ride this ride again. -via reddit

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Gingerbread Imperial Star Destroyer

Behold, an Imperial Star Destroyer made completely out of gingerbread and icing! This was made by the folks who have the Instagram account Star Wars Bakery, who I believe are in Sweden. The ship is not life-size, but it's really big for a Christmas baking project. It's on display at the EA Dice office in Stockholm, along with other gingerbread creations that cannot hold a candle to this piece of art.  -via reddit

(Image credit: Star Wars Bakery)

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Naked Raccoon

Have you ever seen a raccoon without his fur coat? Would you be able to identify this animal if you didn't already know it was a raccoon? Notice the different coloration of only the skin that shows through thin fur on a normal trash panda. We don't know the story of this particular hairless raccoon, but there are several conditions that will cause fur to fall out, or not grow at all on a mammal. He's gone from a furry masked bandit to a scared-looking dumpy blob. I bet he's cold. At least one other raccoon appears to accept him as he is. -via reddit

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Personalized Christmas Stocking

Who would hang a stocking by the chimney with care if they didn't want treats stuffed in it? That's not teh story here. Craig Groeschel posted this picture of his wife Amy showing off the new Christmas stocking that just arrived. The caption says,

Guess what @amygroeschel typed in the box that said, “Would you like a name to personalize your stocking?”

We come across the command that "all fields must be filled" so often that we forget that there are some fields that truly do not need to be filled in. This one's funny enough to become a family heirloom. -via reddit

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Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards Winner

The overall winner of the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards for 2017 is Tibor Kercz, for this amazing sequence of four pictures of a trio of young owls. One of them is a little clumsy, and his brothers look at him like they aren't at all surprised. The sequence, titled "Help," also won the category of Amazing Internet Portfolio. Kercz will receive a photo safari in Kenya, along with other prizes, for his entry. See the enlargeable photos of these and all the winners and honorable mentions in the various categories at the competition website.

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The Christmas Wrapping Lesson

Stavanger Foto is a photography store in Norway. They do funny Christmas cards every year. This year, the staff recreated the painting The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp that Rembrandt painted when he was only 26 years old. The photo store guys didn't have a corpse, so they made do with Christmas packages.

I think it's an improvement over last year's card.

TheTigon, who works there, posted these cards to reddit. The guys got quite a few compliments on their neck floofs.

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Advertising His Power

Griff had a birthday, and made sure everyone knew it. You can do that when you're the only one at work who knows how to change the sign. He didn't post this picture at reddit, but he did join in to explain when extramediumjohn did.

To be fair, I did it without asking, but it's not like they can fire the guy in charge of the sign.

Not on his birthday, anyway. And after all, the sign doesn't say anything malicious or derogatory. But at least now everyone at work knows the power of the Griff.

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Can You Make Sense of This Picture?

Despite first impressions, this is not a picture of a horribly deformed animal. Nor is it an abstract sculpture. Gatamanca posted this picture at reddit and scared a few people. Can you figure out what is? Here's a hint: tilt your head to the left. If you still can't see it, here's a copy of the picture with an outline to help you out. It's amazing how looking at something from a new angle can change your point of view.   

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Christmas Decorations Completed

When is the right time to switch from Halloween decorations to Christmas decorations? In a perfect world, the Halloween stuff would come down on November 1, and Christmas decorations would go up sometime during Thanksgiving weekend. Redditor savage_irony did the changeover in one fell swoop, and he acts like he's both exhausted and proud of himself. I like the finished product, though. -via reddit

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Firefox Has Crashed

HoydenCaulfield posted a picture of a fox that found a soft spot for a nap in his garden in London. The fox didn't wake up as the picture was taken. In fact, it came back the next day and napped on the roof of the shed. This cute picture inspired Firefox puns, including the title. Firefox is updating, Firefox has merged with Napster, Firefox is not responding, etc. Sure, he's adorable, but to those who would like to make a wild fox into a pet, remember they are nervous, destructive, and smelly compared to regular dogs. -via reddit

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How Do You Use A Jar of Peanut Butter?

BesidesPDX posted this picture of a peanut butter jar at reddit and said, "I know I'm not the only one." I must have missed that Calvin and Hobbes strip, although I read it most days. And I have never heard of anyone using peanut butter like this. While most commenters also had never heard of such a thing, a few said they always tried to eat as much peanut butter as possible without disturbing the smooth surface on top. Megamanfre does the same thing a slightly different way. He's not the only one.

Have you ever done this? Have you even heard of it? Will you start doing it now because of this post?

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Buddhist Monks with a Sense of Humor

While they may have given up certain earthly pleasures, like hair, these monks aren't above a bit of shenanigans when they need a bag to carry their stuff. Wouldn't you do the same in their position? Since the band Nirvana and the accompanying symbol were around before these monks were born, there's little chance that they aren't familiar with it. After all, Buddhists seek Nirvana. -via reddit

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Warning for Dog Walkers

WhiteWalkerWaterboy noticed his retired neighbor found a novel way to say, "Get off my lawn!" Think this will cause dog walkers to avoid it? Redditors discussed the use of dihydrogen oxide. Alternate names include dihydrogen monoxide, hydrogen hydroxide, hydrogen oxide, and oxidane. It turns out that all are correct, depending on what chemical nomenclature rules you follow. It's all water, even if it's not under the bridge. None of this would be necessary if people picked up after their dogs.

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Custom Batman Doll

Redditor tas253 has a daughter who's a huge Batman fan. A friend made a doll that looks just like her wearing a Batman costume! The first pun on the picture was "The Dark Knit," but since the doll is crocheted, it came to be called "The Crocheted Crusader." The doll's proud owner does not mind that it's wearing an Adam West costume.  

The friend who made it does this kind of thing for extra money, but does not have an Etsy outlet yet. She is planning to make some dolls for her local children's hospital. -via reddit

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Invasion from the 23rd Century

Redditor Blueyeguy (standing in the red shirt) and a few friends beamed down from the Enterprise into a Renaissance Fair in Minnesota. They are blatantly violating the Prime Directive with their time travel shenanigans. What do Ren fair enthusiasts think of such party-crashing? According to the comments at reddit, many think it's fine as long as everyone has fun. Some dislike the invasion of the integrity of the fairs. Several said that any costume is better than no costume at all, because so many people at Ren fairs these days are just there to watch and take pictures. And a couple mentioned that the time travel joke has been overdone.

One commenter even mentioned a Ren fair that was invaded by an army of Doctor Who cosplayers. -via reddit

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A Legend Comes to Life

We all know that the earth is a disc carried on the back of a turtle. There are supposed to be four elephants in there, too, but maybe they are just covered with mud. This real-life turtle is carrying his share of earth, that's for sure! There's even a poem about it.

"See the TURTLE of Enormous Girth"
"On his shell he holds the Earth."
"His thought is slow, but always kind."
"He holds us all within his mind."

You might try to guess how this turtle ended up with the earth on its back, so redditor assa7iq did some digging.

Right? Everyone's just making jokes and I want to learn how this happens. I'm asking my herpetologist friend.

Edit - answers! I asked how this happens-

"Some turtles can hibernate for a year. Not all, but some. Probably long term hibernation. He probably had a little cavern of some sort. And due to the soil moisture it collapsed on him as he was getting out."

Then I asked if there's any good reason to leave all that on him-

"No good reason, no. He probably just woke up and has a tortoise bedhead. (If anything it's bad, because it lowers the amount of surface area is hit by sunlight for basking)"

Tortoise bedhead is more reasonable than the flat earth theory. -via reddit

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Here Comes the Sun

As we approach the autumnal equinox on Friday, the Southern Hemisphere is approaching the spring equinox. Redditor sky-entist, an astronomer and photographer, watched the sunrise at the South Pole station in Antartica this morning and caught this image. He gave us the conditions:

Current temps are -62.2 °C, -80.0 °F. Flying time was eight hours from Christchurch to McMurdo and another three to pole, both in a ski-equipped Hercules aircraft.

If you recall, the sun moves in a spiral and skips around in a circle along the horizon as it rises and sets in Antarctica. Once it is up, it stays up for half a year, and when it sets, it's gone for months.  

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A Textbook Explanation of Social Media Sites

A textbook uses the analogy of a donut to explain how social media sites differ. It's in the way that people use them. And Google+ is the punchline. Who says textbook writers don't have a sense of humor? The price they expect us to pay for them would be funny, too, if it weren't so tragic. Be sure to like and follow! -via reddit

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The Chainsaw-Wielding Nun of Miami

Hurricane Irma left a wide swath of damage across the Caribbean and Florida. People from all over are chipping in to help, but one person has caught the interest of the internet more than any other. She's Sister Margaret Ann, a high school principle and Carmelite nun who was seen clearing downed trees with a chainsaw, in her usual habit. The Miami-Dade Police Department posted pictures and video of Sister Margaret Ann on their Facebook page.

Sister Margaret Ann is the principal of Archbishop Coleman F. Carroll High School, southwest of downtown Miami, which wrote on its Facebook page early Wednesday, "We are so blessed to have her and the Carmelite Sisters at our school. We are proud of the example they show for our students and other members of the community every day."

The phrase "chainsaw-wielding nun" is one we didn't know we would need to use in the wake of Irma, but it shows the breadth of the work it will take to recover from this storm — in Florida, in neighboring states and in the Caribbean.

Read more about the chainsaw-wielding nun at NPR. -via reddit

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Mothership Approaching

Invading aliens are really into cool neon colors! Redditor fweng posted one of the better pictures of a flying saucer I've seen in quite some time. It's reminiscent of the mothership in Close Encounters of the Third Kind, but if you look at the lower part of the picture, you realize it's a reflection in a window. The ceiling light in the restaurant is reflected in the sky, in the building across the street, and somehow partially in the tree to the right. You can enlarge the image here.

You might also be shocked at the price of gas, which is not $1.18 a gallon, but £1.18 per liter, as the picture was taken in Watford, Hertfordshire, UK. That comes out to about $6 a gallon. The restaurant is Indo Sports Bar & Restaurant, featuring Chinese-influenced Indonesian and Sri Lankan cuisine. That by itself is more intriguing than the faux alien invasion. Or at least more relevant to my interests.

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The Internet of Things Strikes Back

The office Keurig is hungry, and it knows what it wants. Redditor nilicie thinks it might be possessed. The machine stands ready to receive its demands.

It was obviously hacked. Probably be someone named ALF, according to comics_outta_context in a reply to lgtbyddrk's comment, "I'll feed that thing 8 cats if that's what it takes to get my morning coffee."

There have always been rumors that Keurig machines are evil. Now we know just how much.  

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A Sticky Situation

What happened here? It's a case of pavement not sticking to the road in Lufkin, Texas. It appears to be a case of road construction done to somewhat less than the highest industry standards coupled with torrential rain from Hurricane Harvey. The Lufkin police department was inundated with calls about the melting pavement, and are directing drivers with major damage to a Lonestar Hazmat team. -via reddit

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