Lisa Marcus's Blog Posts

Leopard Mama and Cub Cross the River

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This footage captured in Kruger National Park in South Africa shows a careful, protective mama leopard demonsrating the moves and jumps necessary to navigate the Sabie River. That was a pretty big jump for a little cub. I bet, if mama leopards can be proud, that did it. -Via Arbroath

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A Chip off the New Stock

Blueberry | Image: 

The companies responsible for the manufacture of most popular food products work to keep their lines interesting to consumers by creating new versions of old standbys. For example, in the United States, Lays has been heavily advertising several newer flavors of their chips, all released at the same time. They are asking the public to vote for their favorite.

Because tastes differ by region, potato chip flavors around the world vary greatly, as evidenced by this user-submitted post on Bored Panda. Perhaps, with some flavors, we can eat just one.

See the other potato chip flavors from this collection here. 


Mint (l), Octupus (r) | Image: (l),  (r)                       

Caviar | Image: 

German Sausage | Image: 


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Ten Misconceptions About Food

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Ah, food. There aren't many things on which the people of the world agree, but our love of food is one of them. This Mental Floss video selects common bits of misinformation often heard about food, its additives, shelf life, preparation, cooking methods and more. One food mentioned that I can foresee never being under a false impression about is chocolate. I have that one down cold!


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Moms' Notes on Front Doors: Ring this Doorbell and Regret It

Image via: Beth Anne

This collection of notes posted on the front doors of exhausted women everywhere is full of sage reminders and cautionary tales. If you wake the child in the name of attempting to sell mama some vinyl siding, you may be diving into a sea of regret the likes of which you stand no chance of treading. Ring at your own risk. (Unless, of course, you have cookies.) See more funny notes from tired moms at 22 Words.

Image via: Chicago Now

Image via: Chicago Now

Image via: Chicago Now

Via: Anchor Wife

See more about baby and kids at NeatoBambino

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The Top 100 Science Fiction-Themed Songs of All Time

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George Dvorsky at i09 compiled a list of his suggestions for the top 100 songs having to do with science fiction. This comes after their prior list of the top 100 essential albums for science fiction fans. Do you own any of the songs and/or albums listed? I have a fair amount. Porno for Pyros is part of my music collection  I've worn that CD out over the years, as well as Jane's Addiction's stuff. Beasties too.(Video/song above NSFW, language.) 

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Black Bear Knows When He's Not Wanted

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This black bear was ambling up to the patio of a New Jersey homeowner who gave him a verbal warning to vacate the premises. Evidently, New Jersey bears are fluent in English. Or perhaps this bear is just a genius. Whatever the explanation, he turns around quickly and heads back into the woods. -Via Tastefuly Offensive

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What Kind of Latte Does John Q. Pumpkin Drink?

Aram J. French of Mandatory Roller Coaster (previously at Neatorama) may be on to something with his imaginings of what Mr. Pumpkin orders at the coffee shop. Let's hope the baristas are on the top of their game and he doesn't have a long wait. 

-Via Laughing Squid | Image: Mandatory Roller Coaster

View more fun pics over at our NeatoPicto Blog

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Classic Horror Works of H.P. Lovecraft and Edgar Allan Poe, Available For Free Online

The writings of H.P. Lovecraft and Edgar Allan Poe played a part in laying the groundwork for tales of modern horror. Stephen King called Lovecraft "the twentieth century's greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale." Both Poe and Lovecraft's real life hardships lent to their ability to delve into darkness.

Poe, born in 1809, was a predecessor of Lovecraft, and an influence on his writing. As a child, Poe was abandoned by his father and a year later, his mother died of pulmonary tuberculosis (referred to then as consumption). He was taken in and raised by another couple, John and Frances Allan. His relationship with the former was stormy. Poe enjoyed success from his writing during his lifetime, unlike Lovecraft. An early success was his celebrated poem "The Raven."  Poe married his 13-year-old cousin Virginia when he was 26 years old. She died of tuberculosis at age 26. Poe's already present alcoholism worsened after the death of his wife, at times leading to professional setbacks and failures. Poe died at age 40 of unknown causes, though a number of explanations including complications of alcoholism, heart failure, cholera, syphilis and even rabies have been suggested. 

Lovecraft, born in 1890, was only three years old when his father had a psychotic episode and was committed to a mental asylum for the remainder of his life. Once his father was committed, Lovecraft was raised primarily by his domineering mother, with help from two maternal aunts and his maternal grandfather, all of whom lived with the mother and son. Lovecraft, though a prodigy, was prone to ill health, anxiety and night terrors as a child, and suffered from anixiety and self-imposed isolation at times throughout his life. His mother was eventually committed to the same institution as his father after suffering mental health problems of her own. Like Lovecraft's father, his mother died in the asylum. H.P. Lovecraft died of cancer, nearly penniless, at age 46. Unfortunately, his talent wasn't duly recognized until after he died. 

Today, Lovecraft and Poe are highly acclaimed for their macabre tales of horror, of which there are too many notable titles to name here. Luckily for those interested in becoming more familiar with the works of Poe and Lovecraft, many can be accessed online. These stories are perfect for the time of year when darkness comes early and there's much talk of the horror found upon midnights dreary.

Visit this link for the works of Edgar Allan Poe

Visit this link for the works of H.P. Lovecraft

-Via Open Culture | Image: Made from portraits on Wikipedia


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Endangered Species Postage Stamps for 2014 Released

U.S. stamps

The United Nations Postal Administration (UNPA) has released a set of 12 stamps illustrated with beautiful artwork of endangered species. For the last 21 years, the UNPA has issued this stamp series in order to raise awareness of the need for protection of endangered animals across the globe.

The sets for 2014, all of which are pictured here, were released yesterday. Each 2014 stamp features a marine animal. There are three sets: United States, Swiss and European. The U.S. stamps depict Denise's pygmy seahorse, the whale shark, scalloped hammerhead and the Asian arowana. Swiss stamps include the arapaima, basking shark, largetooh sawfish and Siberian sturgeon. European stamps feature the humphead wrasse, great white shark, giant manta ray and the paddlefish. 

American artist Amadeo Bachar created the artwork for the 2014 series. His background in marine biology and scientific illustration made him a particularly qualified artist to handle the task. Bachar's work has been featured in National Geographic and Scientific American, among other prominent publications.

See more of Bachar's work at his website. The stamps can be ordered here.

-Via i09 | Images: UNstamps.org

 
Swiss stamps

 European stamps


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Faces of Fright: Scary Halloween Makeup

  "Creepy Monster" | Image: The Painting Lady

Killer makeup jobs like these can take an average costume to the next level. Bored Panda asked for creepy makeup user submissions; these are a few of the 117 submissions thus far. From oozing flesh wounds to evil, toothy clowns to pierced and punctured zombies, these makeup masks are a wide range of nightmare fodder. See more unnerving makeup art here. 


  "Terrifying Zombie" |  Image: Imgur

"Ripped Flesh Wound" | Image: redeyedemon

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More Honest Brand Slogans



We've previously featured Clif Dickens' Honest Brand Slogans, which he features on his Tumblr site. Here are some more of Dickens' corporate targets for parody. He seems to have a knack for deconstructing things down to a pessimistic take on their essence. See more images at Dickens' Honest Slogans Tumblr site as well as his website.

-Via Design Taxi | Images: Clif Dickens


 



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Grandma Fighting Cancer Knitted Herself a Head of Hair



This is one 71-year-old grandmother who is practically the definition of cool. Rosemary Capitolo of San Jose, California may be suffering from ovarian cancer, but she's doing so in an upbeat, admirable frame of mind. Capitolo knitted herself a cap that resembled hair for her 2013 Halloween costume. This year, her hair gone due to the effects of chemotherapy, Capitolo is once again having fun with her knitted creation. Granddaughter Megan Shone shared this photo via Twitter, and unsurprisingly, it's become popular with people who enjoy examples of those who take life's bad turns with humor, strength and dignity. Visit Megan's Twitter account and Rosemary's Facebook page to keep up with these inspiring ladies.

-Via Bored Panda | Images: Megan Shone


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Ten Hollywood Breakthrough Roles Landed by Stars Who Barely Spoke English



Charisma and sex appeal are universal. That fact explains a number of Hollywood casting situations. For instance, it's one way musicians, models and others with no prior acting experience are able to pull off and even stand out in some film roles. Universal appeal also has led to certain actors and actresses being able to secure major Hollywood roles at a time when they speak little or no English. 

One such case is Antonio Banderas. Director Arne Glimcher cast Banderas in his 1992 film The Mambo Kings at a time when Banderas spoke no English. In fact, in order for Glimcher to clearly convey a request to Banderas that he learn English for the role, he had to use a translator to communicate with the actor. Banderas went on to do well in Kings, so well that his next role was in the Oscar winning Philadelphia with Tom Hanks. Mambo Kings director Glimcher said of Banderas,

"[Antonio] was very responsive, incredibly charming. I think he can seduce any woman, man, cat, dog or bird in the world.”

Read nine more cases of actors and actresses temporarily skating by on their screen presences here. 

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Eight Things You May Not Know About The Terminator



With the thirtieth anniversary of James Cameron's The Terminator now here, some people are looking back to the earliest days of the franchise. In addition to this excellent, early celebration of the film's anniversary over the summer, here are another eight facts about Cameron's tale of a cyborg assassin wreaking havoc. 

For now, I'll leave you with number six on the list, a dubious fact regarding casting. Disgraced former NFL player O.J. Simpson was considered for the title role. At the time, Simpson had a fair amount of success as an actor, having appeared in Roots, The Towering Inferno, among other movies. As the story goes, the studio suggested O.J. Simpson's name to James Cameron as a possibility for the role. Ironically, Cameron felt that no one would believe O.J. as a killer. 

-Via Uproxx | Image: CNN.com 


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Maymo and Penny the Beagles Trick-or-Treat

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Maymo and his little sister Penny (previously at Neatorama) want more than one offering of treats this Halloween. Their safest bet is to make a number of canine costume changes. After all, some treats they receive may be less than delicious. (I'm all for Richard Simmons, but I'd rather have a Snickers than a framed portrait of him.) -Via Laughing Squid

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

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Timo the Cat is Still Type B

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Laying around can be exhausting. A cat must have the freedom to express his need for additional naps. Publicly, if possible. Timo "the ragdoll cat" (previously at Neatorama) is sleepy enough to represent cat-tired felines everywhere. -Via Laughing Squid

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

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This Dilapidated, Spooky Mansion Sold for One Dollar

This Louisvile, Kentucky building called the Ouerbacker Mansion, after its coffee magnate owner Samuel Ouerbacker, was built in 1860. The Romanesque structure in the once trendy Russell neighborhood is now boarded up, crumbling and has no intact windows.

After Ouerbacker's death in 1922, Reverend George Clement, a bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, purchased the mansion and lived there through the 1930s. Then in a neighborhood that was no longer fashionable, a tax business bought the mansion next, only using the first floor. 

By the year 2005, the once palatial home had been abandoned and was in a state of disrepair. The city then took over the house. That year, part of the building collapsed, and the city sunk approximately $100,000 into the structure to stabilize it.

Earlier in 2014, a company called Oracle Design bought the mansion for one dollar. Oracle plans to restore the structure and convert it into apartments. One can see from the pictures that Oracle not only has their work cut out for them, but if they restore the mansion's once grand architectural details, it should make for some beautiful real estate, even when divided. 

See more pictures and learn more about the mansion here.



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Dash Cam Fails Video Compilation

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Fail Army's dash cam video fails compilation is short on funny and long on terrifying. It's certainly a reminder not to take your eyes off the road for even a second. Some of these crashes looked so serious, I wondered what kind of shape the driver was in, post crash. The dashcam may have been intact, but the cars definitely weren't. -Via Tastefully Offensive


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1982 British Magazine Turned Adam Ant into Comic Book Hero

Once upon a time in the 1980s, there was a British magazine called TV Tops, which wasn't long lived. It's almost impossible to imagine why, when one of the magazine's features was a comic called "The Fantastic Adventures of Adam Ant."

Who could question this part pirate, part new wave pioneer being fodder for the superhero treatment? With a BANG!, a mighty fist in the air and a quick stop for a minor eyeliner touch-up, Adam Ant was a hero in whom everyone could have faith.

TV Tops also featured articles and comic strips based on popular television shows of the time, including Buck RogersFame and Hart to Hart

See more scans of "The Fantastic Adventures of Adam Ant" at Dangerous Minds.  




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Society of Biology's Best Biology Photographs of 2014

"Spider like from another world" by Krasimir Matarov
Shortlisted for Photographer of the Year category 


The London-based Society of Biology recently announced their top picks for best biology photographs of 2014. The competition is for amateur photographers. The theme for 2014 was "Home, Habitat, and Shelter." Winning photographs were selected from approximately 800 entries. 

See all the winning photographs at the Society of Biology site.

-Via i09

"A Shelter Designed by Nature" by Robert Cabagnot
 Shortlisted for Photographer of the Year category


"Meal Time" by Boris Barath
Highly commended, Young Photographer of the Year category


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IKEA Ad Recreates Danny's Big Wheel Ride from The Shining

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This commercial for IKEA Singapore reproduces the scene from Kubrick's The Shining in which Danny rides his Big Wheel through the Overlook Hotel and runs into twin trouble. Don't look now... I think one of the twins needs a shave. -Via Laughing Squid


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Banksy's Vermeer



Banksy
 recently took on Dutch master of light Johannes Vermeer in this new work near the harbor in Bristol, England. See more shots of Banksy's nod to Girl With a Pearl Earring, called Girl With a Pierced Eardrum, at Juxtapoz.

Look for an upcoming HBO special called "Banksy Does New York" on November 17th. 

 


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Stories Behind Beautiful Colors in Artistic Masterpieces

Burial of Atala / Anne-Louis Girodet (1808)

Artists have experimented with color in myriad ways for centuries. As art evolved, descriptive names for colors were created, often based upon the elements used to mix them. Author Victoria Finlay has a new book to be released on November 1 entitled The Brilliant History of Color in Art. The book provides backstories of how these colors came to be named, as well as how they were made and the artists who frequently used them.

One toxic example is the color "lead white," as seen in Burial of Atala by Girodet, pictured above. Lead white was so named because it was made from lead. It was also used as a cosmetic by upper class, fashionable women in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The lead makeup killed women such as Maria Gunning, the Countess of Coventry, who died in 1760 at age 27.

Lead white was made by stacking containers of vinegar and lead and applying manure to the tops of the containers. After months of this process, the lead acetate converted to lead carbonate, eventually creating flakes of the substance. The color was frequently used in 17th century Dutch portraits.


Read ten more (abbreviated) backstories of beautiful colors in art here. Finlay's book, with the stories in full, can be purchased here. 


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"Ghost" Portraits From the Early Twentieth Century

Englishman William Hope worked as a carpenter until he realized that there were scams to be performed and money to be made in fooling grief-stricken individuals and families who were desperate for a supernatural sign that their deceased loved ones were at peace. By 1905, Hope's career in "spirit photography" was in full swing, as he shot portraits and double exposed the sitters with the "ghosts" of their family members. 

Even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a fan, and he wrote The Case for Spirit Photography in support of Hope’s duplicitous business. In the end, Hope's trickery was exposed in 1922. I know they're hoky, but there's still something unsettling and creepy about them to me. Read more about Hope and see the rest of this photo collection here.  

 


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The Fifty Weirdest Movies Ever Made

James Woods and Deborah Harry in Videodrome

Flavorwire assembled a list of their nominations for the fifty weirdest films in existence. While "weird" is subjective, I think it's safe to say that the films they listed would pass the weird test of most people out there.

One of the more mainstream titles is David Cronenberg's Videodrome. Certainly a film I will never forget watching for the first time. Seeing James Woods catch on to the Videodrome secret was shocking, somewhat repulsive and great, all at the same time. 

See the list of all 50 films here. Weigh in with your opinions of their selections in comments, if you're so inclined. Do you have any other suggestions?

Image: Criterion


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Where Did Last Names Come From?

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Craig from Mental Floss addresses the question "where did last names comes from" by briefly delving into the ancient history of the surname. Essentially, each region of the world adopted last names at different times, and their ways of choosing them differed. 


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Fifty+ Examples of Beautiful Currency

Fiji - Fiive Dollars

There's nothing like having a wallet full of cash. Yet United States' bills are bland when compared with some of these brightly colored currencies from other countries. Filled with multicolored, detailed images, seeing them almost makes one want to take Washington and Hamilton and trade them in for something a little flashier. 

See more examples of beautiful currency from around the world here. 

Qatar - Qatar Riyal

 China - 100 Renminbi

 Hong Kong - Ten Dollars

 Bermuda - Two Dollars

 Egypt - Egyptiian Pound


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Butter or Margarine?

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You're cooking a meal for the one(s) you love, thus you'd like to serve them and yourself the healthiest versions of delicious foods. One recipe calls for butter. As you do the grocery shopping, you stop and look at all the possible versions of that ingredient. Butter. Margarine. Low-cal and low-fat. Which one is best for you? ASAP Science provides information that can help make the healthiest choice, if we so choose. -Via Science Dump

We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

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Baby Rhino and Goat: Adorable Pair of Pals

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This footage shows an orphaned baby rhino named Gerjie and his friend Lammie the goat as they romp, bounce and play together in a way that shows their obvious affection for each other. Tragically, Gerjie lost his mother to poachers. The rhino and goat pair live together at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre in Hoedspruit, South Africa. -Via Viral Viral Videos

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Forecast: Dog Takes Over Weather Report, Variable Conditions Expected

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This hilarious footage shows a Canadian weather report that goes to the dogs when Edmonton weatherman Mike Sobel attempts to give the forecast while holding Humane Society visitor Ripple on a leash. Ripple, a mastiff mix only wanting to play, plays too powerfully for the television personality to handle while explaining weather conditions and gesturing at the screen. The forecast might indicate "calm conditions," yet in the studio it's a different story! Make sure to watch at around 1:20, when things really start to get wild. -Via Viral Viral Videos

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Profile for Lisa Marcus

  • Member Since 2012/12/13


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