“Why are you black?” If you’re a black person visiting China, you may get asked this question. This fascinating video by TMD Shanghai shares the experience of being a black visitor to China, which historically has had few black residents.
For African American visitors, it gets even stranger. The narrator explains that many Chinese believe that all black people are from Africa, so African Americans are not native English speakers.
Taiwanese artist Kare Huang composed this magnificent piece of science fiction (it is fictional, right?) art. The enormous mechanical duck is inscribed with the words “UN Navy” and “Big Rubber Duck.” How does it inspire you? What story or caption can you write for it?
This is the Clarendon Dry Pile, a device so old that documentation about its origins is a bit spotty. It was set up at the Clarendon Laboratory at Oxford University in 1840. It’s a dry pile, which means that it’s made of alternating layers of sulfur, silver, and zinc that generate electrical current.
Mechanically, it’s a bell, which is why it’s sometimes called the Oxford Electric Bell. The clapper between the two sections oscillates back and forth. The movements are too small to see easily and the sounds are too quiet to hear unaided. It has rung approximately 10 billion times while in operation. You can read more about this remarkable antique at Vice.
If you’re a Disney princess, then your job is to always look good at all times. Thankfully, you’ve got a staff of top-notch animators working with you 24/7 to do that. Shoot, you probably have a designated hair person on duty at all times.
What would it be like if Disney princesses had to deal with real hair problems? A lot of their manes would be out of place, soggy, or sticking up in odd directions. Loryn Brantz of BuzzFeed illustrated 8 princesses with real hair, including Cinderella, Jasmine, Mulan, and Elsa.
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW): 120 Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL): 109 Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX): 78 George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH): 77 Denver International Airport (DEN): 70 William P. Hobby Airport (HOU): 50 Tampa International Airport (TPA): 49 Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL): 49 Nashville International Airport (BNA): 48 Orlando International Airport (MCO): 47
See the TSA's interesting year-end review of the dangerous items seized on their blog. Look at photographs of the (often completely bizarre) items confiscated at the TSA Instagram account.
Don't think for a minute that the costume you stuffed your loyal canine into last Halloween has been forgotten. No, the cat hasn't forgiven you for enforcing the new policy of feline-free keyboards and laundry baskets. Dry food? Duly noted. Pink sweaters? Still in the mind's eye. Your animals are simply biding their time until it's right to strike. Be afraid.
See more animals plotting their human's demise here.
Redditor Xnipek recently posted a photo of a friend who built a way cool snow tauntaunand decided to see how he rides. Giddy up! (Here's hoping the guy doesn't cut him open and get inside— he'll be even colder than when he's sitting on top!) -Via Laughing Squid
Born in poverty and orphaned as a teenager in Hunt County, Texas, Audie Murphy lied about his age in order to try to get into the US Marine Corps. The Marines rejected him, saying that he was too small. Murphy went into the Army instead as an infantryman. He would prove to be an extraordinarily effective soldier and leader.
Time and time again, Murphy would distinguish himself in combat, eventually earning a field commission as a second lieutenant at the age of 19. Before the end of the war, Murphy would earn every combat award offered by the United States Army at the time.
(Photo: Smithsonian Institution)
Among those awards is the Medal of Honor. The Army bestowed that highest of laurels upon 2nd. Lt. Audie Murphy for the actions that he performed on January 26, 1945--70 years ago to this day. Though wounded and badly outnumbered, Murphy personally covered the retreat of his company from repeated German attacks outside of Holtzwihr, France. He did so for an hour with a machine gun on a disabled tank destroyer that was on fire at the time. From his Medal of Honor citation:
Lieutenant Murphy ordered his men to withdraw to a prepared position in a woods while he remained forward at his command post and continued to give fire directions to the artillery by telephone. Behind him to his right one of our tank destroyers received a direct hit and began to burn. It's crew withdrew to the woods. Lieutenant Murphy continued to direct artillery fire which killed large numbers of the advancing enemy infantry. With the enemy tanks abreast of his position, Lieutenant Murphy climbed on the burning tank destroyer which was in danger of blowing up any instant and employed its .50 caliber machine gun against the enemy. He was alone and exposed to the German fire from three sides, but his deadly fire killed dozens of Germans and caused their infantry attack to waver. the enemy tanks, losing infantry support, began to fall back. For an hour the Germans tried every available weapon to eliminated Lieutenant Murphy, but he continued to hold his position and wiped out a squad which was trying to creep up unnoticed on his right flank. Germans reached as close as 10 yards only to be mowed down by his fire. He received a leg wound but ignored it and continued the single-handed fight until his ammunition was exhausted. He then made his way to his company, refused medical attention, and organized the company in a counterattack which forced the Germans to withdraw. His directing of artillery fire wiped out many of the enemy; he personally killed or wounded about 50. Lieutenant Murphy's indomitable courage and his refusal to give an inch of ground saved his company from possible encirclement and destruction and enabled it to hold the woods which had been the enemy's objective.
By the time Germany surrendered later that May, Murphy was a First Lieutenant and not yet 21 years old. He was also tremendously famous (warning: auto-play). When he mustered out and returned home to the United States, he became an actor. He would also write To Hell and Back, his autobiography. When it was turned into a film in 1955, he played himself. You can watch several scenes from it in the video above.
Dan McPharlin, featured previously on Neatorama for his papercraft of miniature retro analog electronics, is back for the feature of his stunning collection of retro sci fi landscapes and album cover art. The Australian artist answered an interview question from Sci-fi-O-Rama about the visual style he most identified with the following:
"Surrealism has always been an influence and I suppose my work also draws heavily on what I consider the ‘golden age’ of sci-fi art. The artwork that is the most exciting to me was what I grew up with; lavish paperback covers, record sleeves and game boxes by Roger Dean, illustrated speculative fiction like the Terran Trade series, art books published by Dragon’s Dream, Paper Tiger (exactly the kind of thing you feature on Sci-fi-O-Rama in fact!) I remember a handful of tattered school library books that I would borrow over and over. I think there was one called Space Wars that I just kept re-borrowing for a whole year; my name was probably the only one on the library slip!
A lot of the newer genres I know very little about. While I find a lot of contemporary work technically impressive, I often have a hard time connecting to it emotionally. For me mood and atmosphere always trumps technical verisimilitude so thats what I try to bring to my work."
That retro surrealist quality is certainly evident in these striking artworks. Additionally, interviewer Kieran bonded with McPharlin over their heavy use of the Commodore Amiga back in the day. You can take the boy out of the retro...
Mukonage is an annual event held on January 15 at the Matsunoyama Onsen hot spring resort in Tokamachi, Niigata Prefecture, Japan. The first son-in-law to marry a girl from town the previous year is picked up by the men of the town, then tossed down a snowy hill. This is followed by Suri Nuri, during which people rub snow and ash on each other's faces to promote health and prosperity.
Spanish artist Marta de Andrés offers this contribution from an art show in Valencia. She writes, "The subject of this festival was Women, the strength of women and equality between men and women." Her response was to imagine the desired Marilyn Monroe as the feared Darth Vader.
DK's Donuts of Orange, a simple, walk-up donut stand in Orange, California, offers this donut that is anything but simple. 7 Deadly says that it would make cronut inventor "Dominique Ansel to kneel over and sob French tears." That would be a great shame, for it would be sad for Ansel to, like Howard Roark in The Fountainhead, withhold future works of his genius from the world to prevent them from being altered.
What does it taste like? Let the reviewers from 7 Deadly speak:
However, the first bite makes it clear that the cronut-gimmick is merely a vehicle for the punch-in-the-face flavors of the thick Sriracha glaze and generous amount of candied bacon sprinkled on top.
If you’re looking for something “delicate,” this is not the donut for you. This savory behemoth is a Sriracha-soaked, protein-packed meal that just happens to be on a cronut-like pastry. There’s a faint hint of sugar from the dough, but that quickly gets lost as the spicy, meaty heat overwhelms every square centimeter of your tongue.
We've long enjoyed the works of British artist Luke Jerram and are especially impressed with his interactive public works, such as this enormous slip-and-slide down the middle of a city street and his singing metal sculpture. So it should come as no surprise that he's the mind behind Play Me, It's Yours, an ongoing project to place beautifully decorated pianos in public spaces. Anyone can sit down and play at one.
It's become a movement far beyond Jerram's work alone. There have been 1,300 pianos in 45 cities on 5 continents. You can find a map of them here and photographs of the more colorful ones at My Modern Met.
This collection of photographs consists of streets that are glorious with natural adornment. Flowers and trees so lush and mature in their state of growth that they form colorful canopies which frame the streets.
This is a user-submitted list that invites readers to post other photographs matching the theme. I can think of of such a walkway that fits the bill but is not represented: The Mall, a row of gorgeous Elm trees lining a wide street in Central Park. Have you encountered any such streets in your travels that are missing from the list? See all the photos here.
Stockholm, Sweden | Image: Hector Melo
Tunnel of Love Romania, Caras-Severin | Image: Sue Hsu
Wisteria Tunnel, Japan | Image: Andreea Vintila Kostova
Bamboo Forest, Sagano Japan | Image: Andreea Vintila Kostova
Grafton, New South Wales, Australia | Image: Jo Hitchin Valencia, Spain | Image: Visittheworld.tumblr.com
Orton Plantation Driveway, Smithville, NC | Image: Mia of Sky People
According to a report in the South China Morning Post, a group of four individuals, including a girl estimated to be twelve to fourteen years old, made off with a 100-carat diamond necklace worth $4.6 million, with the teen being the one who physically took the jewels. The abovementioned news organization wrote of the incident,
"The heist – which detectives have described as “very well planned” – unfolded when two women, a man and a girl thought to be between 12 and 14 years old walked into the Emperor Jewellery shop in the 1881 Heritage shopping mall in Tsim Sha Tsui shortly after 3pm yesterday.
Well-dressed and speaking Putonghua, the trio of adults, managed to distract staff by asking to look at a series of items on display while the girl stole a key from a drawer, opened a display cabinet then slipped the necklace off a display bust and into her pocket."
It sounds as if the young woman is getting one hell of an education thanks to the adults in charge of her care. That certainly wasn't your average teenage girl's trip to the mall. Diamonds may be a girl's best friend, but they might become her worst nightmare should she be apprehended.
Two professional warriors face off against each other in a refined yet brutal form of combat. This is sword fight of cinema, which is the source of some of the most compelling scenes in film history. Clara Darko rounded up selections of 60 great movie sword fights, including scenes from The Princess Bride, Star Wars, Rob Roy, Kill Bill, Pirates of the Caribbean, among many more. They're arranged from a cautious beginning to a bloody end. She notes that the soundtrack, which was very well selected, is from Kill Bill.
There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, “Morning, boys, how's the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, “What the hell is water?”
Thus begins This Is Water, a famous commencement address that writer David Foster Wallace delivered at Kenyon College in 2005. He tells the graduates that a true education is the ability to have awareness--an awareness of the world around them and the people in it as individuals. The water is the continuing awareness of this while we live in the daily routines that push it into the background of our minds.
Filmmakers at The Glossary offer this excerpt of This Is Water, focusing on the illustration of the checkout line--a time of ordinary life that no one enjoys and is often frustrating.
I wrote this post on Saturday morning on my computer in my living room. I was tired and just beginning to chip away at my to-do list. While searching for content, I played this video. My wife passed by and started watching it.
By the end, I had already decided to post the video at Neatorama. My wife was deeply moved by it and asked how I felt about what it had to say. This question took me by surprise. I responded, "I don't know. I guess I spent the time trying to figure out how to write this up for Neatorama."
Chances are you're using a light in the room you're in right now, but it's probably not all too exciting. Home lighting is just one of those things people tend to buy, install and forget about, but these great lamps we featured on Homes and Hues are certain to get and keep your attention.
From floating lights to dripping ones and from color-changers to herb-growers, these great lamps will not only make your space brighter, but also make your home decor a little more brilliant as well.
In what no one would be shocked to see as the next fashion trend in Japan, the Hikaru Skirt (which translates to "Shining Skirt") is a mini designed to illuminate the thighs of anyone c̶e̶r̶t̶i̶f̶i̶a̶b̶l̶y̶ ̶i̶n̶s̶a̶n̶e̶ brave enough to wear it.
The brainchild of Japanese designer Kiyoyuki Amano, the skirt is lit from underneath with LED lights equipped with gyro sensors, so that the light colors and patterns change with the movement of the model.
Amano said that he was simply experimenting with lights on skirts when he discovered that they shone a spotlight on the wearer's thighs, which he found enlightening. Eureka! Talk about a light bulb moment! Amano is apparently so enthusiastic about the Hikaru — which has yet to be mass produced — that he's started a Tumblr with the skirt (and thighs) in a starring role. Don't miss the thighlights on said Tumblr.
YouTube user The Fabulous Mr. Pug made this video about how he came to care for Coco, a stray kitten he found living in the building where he worked. At the start of the video, Coco is filmed at the power plant, filthy and obviously frightened by the loud machinery. Mr. Pug explains,
"She was born in the thermal power plant I work in and she was alone, hungry, cold and scared. She was trying to eat dry bread when I found her. I brought her some kitten food and we instantly became best friends. One week later, we adopted her and she became a new member of our family. Today, she is one beautiful and playful kitty and she brings so much happiness into our lives!"
What a sweet story. I can only imagine how happy Coco is to have a home instead of fending for herself at the scary power plant.
The video below is of Coco doing kitty-like things at her new home. In this instance, she's discovering carbonated water. That bubbly stuff tickles her nose, and she's not sure it's entirely safe. Best to take cover behind a curtain and stalk it for a bit, just in case. -Via Tastefully Offensive
Check your pockets. Do you have $350,000 handy? If you do, then you can own the Undisputable Cuz, this gloriously huge portable barbecue pit now on sale on eBay. Terry Folsom of Brenham, Texas is the current owner. Why he would ever want to part with it is a mystery, especially once you hear what it has to offer: the trailer-mounted assembly is 75 feet long and contains a walk-in cooler. It can cook 4 tons of meat at a time, which is enough to a good family weekend get-together.
Like the bricklaying video I posted a couple years ago, there's something calming and appealing about watching someone become, through practice, the master of a skill you might not think of. This employee of the Golden Gate Bridge Transportation District can plug pylons into holes made for them along the Golden Gate Bridge. He does so while the truck he's travelling on is moving at considerable speed.
He never misses a single hole throughout the video.
Lars Andersen, the fastest archer in the world, is back with a mesmerizing video showing his apparently superhuman abilities with a bow and arrow. He has revived centuries-old techniques in positioning, such a holding the arrow along the right rather than the left side of the bow. Andersen describes them at length in the notes to the YouTube video below.
Happiness is possible on this earth because these haggis pops are actually real! It's more portable than the world's largest haggis and surely just as tasty. Instructables member PenfoldPlant, the inventor of the Möbius bacon strip, made them for a Burns Supper, an annual celebration of the life and work of Scottish poet Robert Burns that takes place on January 25.
PenfoldPlant, a true traditionalist, made them from fresh sheep guts. He even cleaned and prepated the stomach itself, which serves as the coating of these delicious wonders. This step required careful work. He placed a ping pong ball in part of the stomach, then tied off and cut that part off the rest of the stomach.
You stand under the hot water for a couple minutes. It dances over your body. The steam rises and fills your nostrils. Your world is, for a brief moment, calm and peaceful. Now is the opportunity for enlightenment.
That is when a shower thought--an experience of mundane profundity--enters your mind. Imgur member Buttman illustrated 20 of them.
Have you ever looked at the ritual of Super Bowl parties and wondered what the big fuss was all about? If so, your'e not alone. In this amusing Ze Frank ad for Friskies, done in the style of the "Dear Kitten" series, the elder cat tries to make sense of this perplexing ritual, so that the kitten may know what to expect.
Sarah Showfety of New Jersey is the mother of a 22-month old baby. She's got another one on the way. She's busy, tired, and stressed. In other words, she's the mother of a toddler.
Like any parent, she's taking shortcuts. That's the only way you get through this period relatively sane. Showfety knows that her decisions are not always the best, so she's already writing apology notes to her daughter. The results are quite funny. You can read them all at Dear Baby XO.