What’s the scariest monster you can think of? That’s right, online trolls! And to add to the horror, they now have their own Broadway-style musical number, courtesy of AVbytes. As you’d expect, they are fairly proud of the chaos, discord, and misery they leave across the web. The lyrics to this song are posted at the YouTube page. You can enjoy the song, but remember, don't feed the trolls! -via Laughing Squid
Last year, Roy Hutain created an internet sensation when he created an LED Stickman Costume for his toddler daughter Zoey. This year, Zoey is a year older and the costume is more elaborate. Her “Glowy Zoey” LED costume changes color in response to sound, and has Minnie Mouse ears for her trip to Disneyland! This version is a prototype, but you can buy the basic Stickman Costume at Glowy Zoey. -via Tastefully Offensive
Just in time for Halloween, we’ve got some teeny tiny horrors that would make your skin crawl… if they were large enough to see, that is! We're talking about the images in the category of Creepy Crawlies from the Nikon Small World 2014 microphotography competition. Go on, take a peek, they won't hurt you!
This Thursday, October 23rd, 2014, the moon will pass in front of the sun without totally blocking it out. This partial solar eclipse will be visible to almost everyone in the United States and Canada.
On the left is an animation showing the view from above the Earth, looking down on the U.S. during the eclipse. The curved line sweeping around clockwise is the terminator, the day/night line. The big gray distorted circle is the physical shadow of the Moon. You can see that over time it moves roughly eastward and southward, the combination of its motion and the Earth’s spin. If you live anywhere inside the path of that shadow, you’ll see an eclipse. The closer you are to the center of the shadow, the more of the Sun will be blocked.
Phil Plait has more on the eclipse, and some safety advice on how to observe it at Bad Astronomy. It looks like I’ll be able to see it, just before the sun sets over the western horizon.
The Key of Awesome brings us an update to the classic song “The Monster Mash,” with Frank lamenting the current state of monster movies. Too violent, too shocking, too gross! Modern horror characters show up at the party, including Hannibal Lecter, Freddy Krueger, and the Human Centipede. Concerning that last one, the video contains NSFW language and subject matter. -via Tastefully Offensive
People worry that Barbie dolls with their unreal figures present an unattainable ideal for a woman’s appearance, which can be stifling to a young girls’s ego. But the kids who really play with Barbies are typically between 3 and 7 years old. I can totally relate to this. Relatives would buy my daughters Barbies left and right, and my kids would cut their hair, paint them, draw tattoos on them, amputate a few limbs, and they even made one into a male because they didn’t have enough Ken dolls. This story is from John McNamee at Pie Comic.
The music video for Roy Kafri’s song “Mayokero” is a little different. The album covers do the singing! Well, some of the covers sing, others are beatboxing. The video was directed by Vania Heymann, who gave us the interactive Video for "Like A Rolling Stone" and The Walking Contest. -Thanks, Daniel Koren!
Graphic artist Danielle Delph shows us a very personal project in which she combed through old family photographs and matched some from her childhood with those of her mother’s childhood. And then combined them.
I've always wondered if my mom and I would have been friends had we grown up together. Would we be in the same classes? Would we have the same sense of humor? Would people tell us we're inseparable? After seeing myself in her childhood photos, I'm pretty sure we would have been great friends..
You think trying to work on a computer with a curious cat around is hard? This poor zookeeper needs to dose two young pandas with medicine, but they have other things in mind- like climbing, cuddling, and playing! It appears akin to trying to teach something important to a roomful of preschoolers at their peak energy time. And you can’t give medicine during a nap! -via Daily Picks and Flicks
News from the Supreme Court is extremely important, but since cameras are not allowed during hearings, the audio-only TV coverage is far from interesting. John Oliver has a wonderful idea to get people to watch SC news stories: use footage of dogs! To that end, his production team made an entire reel of “stock footage” which can be used to illustrate any sound bite from Supreme Court hearings. Each individual Justice is included, as well as lawyers and other court employees.
And in case you like that idea, here is the entire reel, which can be excerpted as necessary. There is no soundtrack, but once you start watching, you won’t want to stop. -via Daily Picks and Flicks
When Ohio State played Rutgers on Saturday, TBDBITL marched and gave us a tribute to classic rock. The complicated formations include a pinball machine (during "Pinball Wizard," of course) and a musician smashing a guitar onstage. Honestly, we really don’t post the Ohio State Marching Band’s halftime show every week, just when it’s awesome. -via Uproxx
The idea of eating human flesh is abhorrent to most folks, but the truth is people, like animals, will eat anything when the alternative is dying of starvation. And most of us understand the vast difference between eating available corpses and murder. However, in the ten stories of people who survived starvation through cannibalism, there are a few that involved murder, although the details are sketchy. Self defense? That's what one claimed. In other cases, it was "either him or me," or helping along those who were about to die sooner or later. Read ten tales of desperation that led to cannibalism at How Stuff Works.
When you watch a horror film, you can be excused for not remembering the details, like the architecture. But maybe you’ve seen these movies more than once, or maybe even recently. Can you identify the houses, haunted or not, from Hollywood’s biggest horror movies? The first one in the Buzzfeed quiz is a gimme, especially if you’ve followed Neatorama for a few years. The rest, well, you’re on your own. I scored eight out of ten, which is more of the movies than I’d actually seen, because I’m a good guesser.
The following is an article from Uncle John's Curiously Compelling Bathroom Reader.
(Image credit: Flickr user kawaiikiri)
Most stories have the moral at the end. But we’ll put it right up front: If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
One evening in February 1871, George Roberts, a prominent San Francisco businessman, was working in his office when two men came to his door. One of them, Philip Arnold, had once worked for Roberts; the other was named John Slack. Arnold produced a small leather bag and explained that it contained something very valuable; as soon as the Bank of California opened in the morning, he was going to have them lock it in the vault for safekeeping.
Arnold and Slack made a show of not wanting to reveal what was in the bag, but eventually told Roberts that it contained “rough diamonds” they’d found while prospecting on a mesa somewhere in the West. They wouldn’t say where the mesa was, but they did say it was the richest mineral deposit they’d ever seen in their lives: The site was rich not only in diamonds, but also in sapphires, emeralds, rubies, and other precious stones.
The story sounded too good to be true, but when Arnold dumped the contents of the bag onto Robert’s desk, out spilled dozens of uncut diamonds and other gems.
If someone were to make such a claim today, they’d probably get laughed out of the room. But things were different in 1871. Only 20 years had passed since the discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill in California spiked the greatest gold rush in American history. Since then other huge gold deposits had been discovered in Colorado, as well as in Australia and New Zealand. A giant vein of silver had been found in the famous Comstock Lode in Nevada in 1859, and diamonds had been discovered in South Africa in 1867- just four years earlier. Gems and precious metals might be anywhere, lying just below the earth’s surface, waiting to be discovered. People who’d missed out on the earlier bonanzas were hungry for word of new discoveries, and the completion of the transcontinental railroad in 1869 opened up the West and create the expectation that more valuable strikes were just around the corner. When Arnold and Slack rolled into town with their tale of gems on a mesa and a bag of precious stones to back it up, people were ready to believe them.
The next morning the two men went to the Bank of California and deposited their bag in the bank’s vault. They made another big show of not wanting anyone to know what was in the bag, and again they let some of the bank employees have a peek. Soon everyone in the bank knew what was in it, including the president and founder, William Ralston. He had made a fortune off the Comstock Lode, and had his eye out for the next big find. Ralston didn’t keep the men’s secret, and neither did George Roberts: Soon all of San Francisco, the city built by the Gold Rush of 1849, was buzzing with the tale of the two miners and their discovery.
This is an ad for Zyx, a brand of cough drops sold in Finland and Sweden. You can see what’s going to happen a mile away, but it’s still amusing. It makes a strange kind of sense, since every time I listen to black metal singing, it makes my throat hurt. Just watching this on TV could sell a lot of cough drops! -via Daily Picks and Flicks
Working at home is wonderful, but it has its drawbacks. My kids have been on fall break this past week, which makes getting anything done difficult. However, they did clean up the house. The cats won’t do that. They just want your undivided attention while you’re home with them. Cole and Marmalade (previously at Neatorama) demonstrate exactly what working around cats is like. At least I’m in a position to put all the cats outside when they get too annoying. -via Fark
You could invest nine hours or so into watching the The Hobbit movies (after waiting for the last one to be released in December), or you could watch the condensed version in this stop-motion LEGO video from BrotherhoodWorkshop. I tried to read The Hobbit about 40 years ago and couldn’t finish it. I haven’t seen any of The Hobbit movies, either. So I watched this and laughed because even at the breakneck speed of the condensed story, there was still time for jokes. Spoilers? I don’t know; I really don’t feel I’ve been spoiled watching this. One who knows mentioned in the YouTube comments that this was more faithful to the book than the Peter Jackson films. -via Geeks Are Sexy
Bosnian Bill has found a lock he cannot pick. Just wait until you see why not! This clever mechanism works in a different way from most locks, as it’s not straight. It’s a rare, complicated, and presumably expensive lock for which most locksmiths could not duplicate a key. Lose or break your key, and the whole thing would be rather useless. I'd never let any of my kids near that key. -via reddit
Now we know where Professor X is from, and what sweet ride he has! Redditor funboixero spotted this car in Houston. He saw the driver exit the parking lot in a wheelchair, but hasn’t yet mentioned whether he was bald, which is what everyone wants to know. You can get a closer look at imgur.
Westhaven Funeral Home employees had just taken the deceased inside the St. Thomas Missionary Baptist Church near Jackson, Mississippi, for the funeral Thursday morning when a funeral director’s car was stolen from the church parking lot.
"Once the funeral director went inside with the body to set up, he jumped in the car and took off," said Nathaniel Ford of Westhaven Funeral Home.
Westhaven officials, gave chase to their stolen car,
"High speed chase, 100 miles and hour," said Ford. "Our funeral directors jumped in the hearse, and tried to catch him and he was driving 90 miles and hour and the car went off and left him. Then Sheriff's department got in pursuit."
After a high-speed chase down I-20 into Jackson, the car was abandoned, and the car thief fled on foot. Devarous White was arrested later. Investigators say White signed the funeral registry before the car chase, which will be used as evidence against him. -via Fark
(Image credit: WLBT)
Tony Dighera of Cinagro Farms devoted four years to perfecting his crop of Frankenstein pumpkins. They’re not cobbled together from different individuals like Frankenstein’s monster, but pumpkins grown in molds that have the shape of the monster’s head. Now that’s a fancy jack-o-lantern right there! This year, Dighera brought in a crop of 5500 pumpkins, and sold every one of them at $75 each. Next year, there will be a bigger crop, plus white pumpkins shaped like skulls. Yeah, you’ve seen molded fruit before, but I can tell you from experience, it’s not easy to get them to come out consistently right. See more pictures at Geekologie.
Have you ever noticed that the models in the J. Crew catalog look drunk? I haven’t either, as I don’t shop for clothing until I have no choice. But someone noticed, and with a few captions that had to come from first-hand experience, created the blog Drunk J. Crew. The blog is only a couple of days old, but I can see it growing because there’s got to be a lot of raw material available. -via Uproxx
Kai Halvorsen loves his dog Igor. But when the family planned a trip to Thailand, they couldn’t take Igor along. He had to stay in a kennel. Kai decided he had to do something to make Igor’s time there a little better, since the dog had never been away from the home or the family overnight. You’ll love what they came up with… I sure did. It wouldn’t have happened if the stunt weren’t sponsored by a paint and tool company, which resulted in a great ad, but it’s an adorable idea for a much loved pet. -via Tastefully Offensive
The magician is famous for his thrilling escapes. But the feat he should be known for is breaking into a seance.
On July 23, 1924, Boston was suffering from a brutal heat wave. The evening temperature hovered in the high 80s when the famed magician Harry Houdini trudged up to the fourth floor séance room at 10 Lime Street. With him were O.D. Munn, editor of Scientific American, and an esteemed panel of scientists. They had come to witness the psychic feats of the nation’s most credible spirit medium, a pretty 36-year-old flapper with blue eyes and a bob.
Her name was Mina Crandon. Followers called her “Margery”; detractors knew her as the Blonde Witch of Lime Street. And she was renowned for conjuring the voice of her dead brother, Walter, whose spirit rapped out messages, tipped tables, and even sounded trumpets. Even by ghost standards, Walter was unfriendly, answering questions and quoting scripture in a gruff disembodied voice. Margery, by contrast, was charming and attractive—at least when she wasn’t showing off her most convincing psychic talent: extruding a slithery, viscous substance called “ectoplasm” from her orifices. Photos show this otherworldly substance flowing from her nose and ears, but mostly it emerged from beneath a sheer kimono like a string of entrails—an “ectomorphic hand” that Walter used to carry out his commands.
Today we remember the era’s jazz, speakeasies, and glitz, but the ’20s were also the zenith of America’s obsession with the spirit world. Reeling from losing an estimated 15 million people in the Great War and 21 million more to the Spanish-flu pandemic, people were searching for ways to connect with the dead. Spirit guides emerged to help the bereaved, usually for hefty fees. And as reputable magazines and newspapers increased their coverage of paranormal phenomena, mediums became rock stars. Margery herself had become a messiah to hundreds of thousands of Americans.
In the summer of 1924, Margery occupied the red-hot center in the raging national debate over Spiritualism, an 80-year-old religious movement that centered around the possibility of communicating with the dead. The most famous of its 14 million believers was Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, author of the Sherlock Holmes mysteries and a man of impeccable reputation. Witnessing a séance in his London home, he became convinced of Margery’s supernatural powers. Her refusal to be compensated for her miracles only added to her credibility. It wasn’t long before Doyle had recommended her to the editors of Scientific American, which was offering a $2,500 prize to the first medium who could verifiably demonstrate to its six-man investigative committee a “visual psychic manifestation.”
This was no fly-by-night group of spook hunters. Scientific American’s J. Malcolm Bird chaired the committee, which included psychologist William McDougall of Harvard, former MIT physicist Daniel Comstock, and two members of the Society of Psychical Research, Hereward Carrington and Walter Prince. Bird and Carrington had already examined Margery more than 20 times and were ready to hand over the money. The New York Times reported the development with a straight face: "'Margery' Passes All Psychic Tests Scientists Find No Trickery in Scores of Séances with Boston Medium."
Which would you prefer: carry a couch down two flights of stairs, negotiating tight corners, or would you rather just throw it off the third floor balcony and be done with it? These guys came up with an alternative scheme that’s somewhere in between those two extremes. What could possibly go wrong? I might call this Southern ingenuity, but the lack of accent in the narration makes it seem more like Yankee ingenuity. -via reddit
Well, the cloak of wisdom worked exactly as it should, but it didn’t do him much good at this late date, now, did it? He should have put on his thinking cap instead! This kid must be a sophomore, because that word translates to “wise fool.” Or something like that. The is the latest comic from Up and Out by Jeremy Kaye. -via reddit
Twenty million bats in one cave! Can you imagine being there and not knowing that until it happens? And did you know that a bat’s hearing has to be ignored while it uses its sonar trick, lest it drive them batty? This video from the PBS YouTube series It's Okay To Be Smart has all kinds of fascinating facts about the 1300 or so species of bats on earth. By the time you finish this, you’ll have a new respect of those fearful flying Halloween symbols. Read more about bats at Bat Conservation International, or any of the other links about bats you’ll find at the YouTube page. -via Everlasting Blort
Australian folks try out some really odd foods they’ve never encountered before: aerosol cheese, dried meat sticks, and something that night be chips, but are designed to burn your tongue. Described that way, they really do sound weird, don’t they? It’s difficult to suddenly develop a taste for something you’re not used to. If you grew up in Australia and never had ranch dressing on a salad, you would have no idea what to expect from Cool Ranch Doritos. In the same vein, most Americans have never tried Vegemite. Let’s see how that goes.
-via Tastefully Offensive
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