Miss Cellania's Blog Posts

Is There an Error in this Painting?

This painting is titled Wivenhoe Park, Essex by John Constable. It was painted in 1816 for Major General Francis Slater Rebow. Can you see anything unusual about the picture? Minnesotastan noticed it.

I first saw this painting about 30 years ago in a print that was on the wall of the office of a colleague of mine at the University of Kentucky.  After looking at the painting for a while, I initially concluded that the artist (world famous for his landscape portrayals) must have made an error in depicting the scene.  Nobody else seemed interested in the apparent anomaly, and I lost track of the painting (not knowing its title) until I encountered it again this past week.

I invite you to explore the image (it should enlarge to wallpaper size with a click) to see if you find anything that appears internally inconsistent in the content.

Whether you find it or not, you'll be interested in the explanation at TYWKIWDBI. Minnesotastan tells us where the anomaly is, and then looks into the background of how the painting was constructed to reconcile what we see with what Constable had to work with 200 years ago.   


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 
Featured Designs from the NeatoShop:



Cold Comfort: How to Best Use Your Freezer

The following article is from the new book Uncle John’s Uncanny Bathroom Reader.

Did you know that you can keep eggs in your freezer? (There’s a trick to it.) Here are some tips on how to freeze foods you probably thought couldn’t be frozen, and how to better freeze the stuff you’re already freezing, preventing waste and saving money in the process.

(Image credit: Flickr user Beverly Vealach)

FRESH VEGETABLES

• Before freezing, chop raw vegetables to the size you are likely to use when cooking. Thawed vegetables are more difficult to chop.

• Vegetables tend to lose color, favor, texture, and even vitamins when they’re frozen, thanks to the activity of enzymes in the veggies. Blanching the vegetables (immersing them in boiling water for a short period of time) before freezing interrupts the activity of the enzymes, and will keep the frozen vegetables fresher longer.

• Blanching times vary from 11⁄2 minutes for peas and 11 minutes for large ears of corn; consult a cookbook for the correct amount of time for the vegetable you want to freeze.

• After blanching, quickly immerse the vegetables in cool water to prevent them from overcooking.

• Leafy greens, tomatoes, and watery vegetables like zucchini and squash can be frozen without blanching. If you plan on making zucchini bread, grate the zucchini before you freeze it.

GROUND MEAT

Continue reading
We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Project Moby Dick, the Cold War’s Least Believable Surveillance Strategy

In 1956, the United States launched a series of balloons that took advantage of weather patterns to spy on the USSR. They went up in Europe, glided over the Soviet Union, and were intercepted over Japan, where planes would extend hooks to grab the cameras from them in mid-air. What could possibly go wrong?

Still, even the most optimistic assessments admitted that there was a possibility that some of the balloons would veer wildly off course. To aid in recovery, a cartoon and multilingual placard was included, encouraging them to be brought to U.S.-allied bases for a reward.  

“THIS BOX CAME FROM THE SKY
IT IS HARMLESS
IT HAS WEATHER DATA IN IT
NOTIFY THE AUTHORITIES
YOU WILL RECEIVE A REWARD IF YOU
TURN IT IN AS IT IS”

And if the Air Force thought that the Soviets wouldn't notice the balloons, they were sorely mistaken. Read about Project Moby Dick at Atlas Obscura.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

March Mammal Madness 2017

The online tournament March Mammal Madness is now in its fifth year, and more popular than ever. The bracket started with 64 mammals of all types, and they are matched up against each other in a simulated battle that depends on the habits and skills of real-life animals, as described by scientists who study them, with the luck of the draw thrown in by the roll of a dice. The higher-ranked animal gets the home court advantage in earlier rounds, which can get weird when, say, an armadillo battles a leopard seal. And sometimes the result comes from completely out of left field.

This year, guest narrator and biologist Dr. Danielle Lee tweeted a battle involving her own research subject: the African giant pouched-rat, native to Tanzania. Lee narrated the second round match-up between her pouched-rat and the maned wolf in the cerrado (tropical savannah) of central Brazil. With no tree or burrow to hide in, the pouched-rat was easily tracked by the wolf, which it couldn’t outrun. At least that’s what Lee tweeted, but that’s not what actually happened. Before concluding the battle, Lee revealed that the pouched-rat hadn’t actually shown up for the fight because Tanzania recently banned the export of live animals.

An article at Gizmodo explains how the tournament works. The tournament has been going on for a while; the final four will do battle Monday and the championship bout is Wednesday, with all the action on Twitter. You can check out previous matchups at March Mammal Madness' Twitter feed, like the matchup between a short-faced bear and a group of Neanderthals.

Sad to say, the bear advanced to the final four. You can follow discussion about the matchups with the hashtag 2017MMM, and learn more about the tournament at March Mammal Madness.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Ten Years of LEGO Stephen Hawking

Ten years ago, Stephen Hawking went for a ride on the Vomit Comet and experienced the loss of gravity. Ochre Jelly (Iain Heath) was impressed by the story and paid tribute by building a LEGO version of Hawking, which went viral. Of course it did. The LEGO sculpture has just a few simple shapes, but everyone who saw it instantly knew who it was. Hawking started Ochre Jelly on a new career of sculpting familiar pop culture figures in LEGO with a minimalist goal: make them recognizable with the fewest bricks possible. We've been getting a kick out of his creations ever since. Heath tells the story of how Hawking inspired him at the Brothers Brick.

(YouTube link)

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of Hawking's zero-G flight (and his own 50th birthday), Heath took the original Hawking sculpture on its own ride in the Vomit Comet! Oh yeah, he also got some footage of himself on the flight -Thanks, Iain!


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Simon's Cat in Camouflage Challenge

Blending in with one's surroundings is a common strategy for predators to use in capturing some other animal to eat. Leopards are good at it. So are spiders, anglerfish, and octopuses. Simon's Cat tries it out.

(YouTube link)

But Simon's cat is neither a spider nor an anglerfish, although he probably thinks he's a leopard. He just doesn't quite have the needed skills. It might have been his comfy suburban upbringing, or it may be just his bad luck.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Trouble with Eden

Reality TV has been around long enough now that you'd think there would be rules in place to handle every contingency. The story of the British reality game show Eden hints that it's not necessarily so. Contestants were taken to an island off the coast of Scotland and expected to fend for themselves for a year, while being filmed as they bond with each other and struggle for survival.  

The contestants on the show try to complete a task with zero outside assistance or contact with the outside world for one year.   But here’s the kicker.  There were 23 contestants that started.  13 quit and 10 finished the show, only there was one small problem.  By the time the 10 surviving contestants came back, the show had already been cancelled for 7 months.

That tidbit leaves us with so many questions. Did the camera operators stay after the show was canceled? Will the cast and crew be paid? If they cheated and got outside help, as reported, why didn't they hear the news? Is this whole story a publicity stunt to get us all watching a possible revival? Read the story, and see clips from Eden at TVOM.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Peak Age for Everything

There's something great to be said for every age. According to research, people are most satisfied with their lives at age 23, but after a lot more experience, they are  very satisfied again at age 69. The best age for learning a new language is seven, but that doesn't mean your chance is gone if you don't. You reach peak muscle strength at age 25, but your math skills will peak at 50, and 51-year-olds are better at understanding emotions. Of course, these are averages, so your mileage may vary. The section on marriage is understandable, but not definitive.

The peak age to settle down is 26.

The 37% Rule of statistics says that at age 26 you'll have met enough people to have some solid options without waiting so long that they start pairing off without you.

And according to one recent study, divorce rates are lowest for couples who married between the ages of 28 and 32.

Check out the peak age for all kinds of things at Business Insider. Each conclusion has links to the research that produced it. -via mental_floss


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Cheese Trouble

When Wallace and Grommit meet the Minions… you have the premise for a great cartoon. Actually, Grommit meets the Minions. With Wallace, it's not so clear.  

(vimeo link)

Fabrice Mathieu (previously at Neatorama) brings us a digital mashup that's as seamless as it is silly. With French subtitles. -Thanks, Fabrice!


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Great American Dream House

The following article is from the book Uncle John's Bathroom Reader Plunges into California.

It wasn’t everybody’s idea of home sweet home, but it was the right house at the right time for thousands of West Coast families after World War II.

MASTER BUILDER IN THE MAKING

All Joe Eichler wanted to do was build some low-cost housing for World War II veterans and their families: small, ranch-style homes with basic amenities. What he ended up with were stylish, iconic homes that are still in demand today. The reason? Eichler, though he didn’t know it at first, was a modern man in every way. For one thing, he was an equal-opportunity builder who opened the doors of his houses to people of all races and colors, a pretty daring prospect in the pre–civil rights era. If someone wanted to buy one of his houses, all they had to do was come up with the down payment (anywhere from $500 to $2,650) and qualify for a mortgage.

In fact, the only colors Eichler cared about were the colors of his houses. His son Ned tells the story of how his father, while cruising through one of his developments, called a halt to a house-painting job because the color the owners had chosen didn’t look right with the colors of the houses on either side of it. The house-painter told Eichler that the owners really wanted that particular color and added, “After all, it’s their house.” Eichler said, “Like hell it is. It’s my house. Change the g**damn color.”

THE HOUSES THAT JOE BUILT

Continue reading

Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Nowruz Celebrations Around the World

 

Nowruz is the Persian New Year holiday, which starts at the vernal equinox. Although it has a Zoroastrian origin, it is celebrated in a asecular way by Persian and Turkish people all over the world. These celebrations vary, but usually include public parties, food, dancing, parades, and a lot of jumping over fires. Shown here is a celebration in Astana, Kazakhstan. See a roundup of photographs from Nowruz 2017 at Buzzfeed.  


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Things Many People Still Don't Understand About Star Wars

Star Wars has become such an epic franchise with such a devoted fandom that the origins of that universe have been left behind. To understand some of the mechanics of the story, Looper takes us back to how the stories were first constructed to remind of some details we've either forgotten or never realized in the first place.

(YouTube link)

A little context helps us to understand how the juggernaut we know as Star Wars grew from just a movie into what it is today: a modern mythology that became more than anyone could have imagined. -via Geeks Are Sexy


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

March Madness Basketball Fails

The NCAA basketball tournament has so many great players and great matchups that people watching start to think that's normal. It's not. Fail Army is here to remind us that the rest of us aren't that good at the game. This video has some NSFW language.

(YouTube link)

Before playing basketball, you should know the rules:
1. Don't hang onto the rim, especially with a free-standing basket.
2. Do not use a folding chair to boost your jump.
3. Keep in mind that basketball can become dodgeball at any moment.

-via Tastefully Offensive


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Why Women Couldn’t Wear Pants on the Senate Floor Until 1993

So many of the conventions that ruled how men and women interacted were "unwritten rules" that everyone understood, but were not legally codified. Conformity came from social pressure from the majority of people who just knew that "that's the way it is." Such was the dress code for the U.S. Senate that expected women to wear dresses long after those in other professions were wearing pantsuits, uniform pants, or jeans to work.

As the upper house in the U.S. legislature, the Senate has always been more formal and reserved than the House. Even during the 1980s, pants on women were apparently too much for that august chamber to handle. Individual Senate offices had their own rules, but on the floor, women wearing pants were verboten, which could necessitate quick changes. "We've heard from women staff that in the 1980s, if they came in to work—if they were called in on an emergency basis—they needed to keep a dress to put on quickly or they had to borrow one if they had to appear on the Senate floor," Richard A. Baker, Senate historian from 1975 to 2009, told The Washington Post in 2002.

While the dress code for the Senate was never officially codified, the norms were enforced by Senate doorkeepers, who controlled access to the chamber and served partly as security guards, partly as protocol monitors. Even today, they assess each person seeking entry, making sure they are supposed to be there and are dressed appropriately. The problem is that "dressed appropriately" has historically been up to the discretion of the doorkeeper on duty: Doorkeepers made determinations based on personal opinion or instructions from their boss, the sergeant at arms.

What did it take for the doorkeepers to back down over enforcing that dresses be worn by women senators? It took a critical number of concurrent women senators (six), and one breaking the unwritten rule in order to bring the entire subject up for discussion. Read how that finally happened in 1993 at mental_floss. 


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Babies Who Look Strangely Like Celebrities

"You know, when junior scrunches his eyes up like that, he looks just like (insert famous movie actor)!" Yes, he does. The internet has an unlimited supply of baby pictures from proud parents, plus a revolving door of celebrities, so it stands to reasons that people will see an occasional uncanny resemblance.



Check out an entire class of infants who are doomed to grow up and be compared to a famous person in this gallery. -via TVOM

See more about baby and kids at NeatoBambino

Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

30 Passionate But Pointless Arguments

It's happened to all of us. A family member, friend, or co-worker says something wrong, so you point out their error. But they are convinced you are the one who is wrong. We should just let it go at that point, but every once in a while, the argument escalates into something the two of you think is important, when it's not important at all. It's just dumb.



Are these examples of overthinking it, or just over-caring? Even if you manage to dial it back, those arguments and their aftermath will stay with you, so you can share it years later.

A reddit post asked the question "What's the most pointless argument you've been passionately involved in?" and 22 Words selected the 30 funniest of those dumb arguments to illustrate. -via Metafilter


Load More Comments Commenting is closed.

Deadpool Sings a Parody of "Gaston"

If Deadpool were a musical, our hero might sing a song like "Gaston" from Beauty and the Beast. It has plenty of NSFW language.

(YouTube link)

This parody works better than it should, but mainly makes us want a new Deadpool movie, like, yesterday.  -via Geeks Are Sexy


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Princess Tree

The tree genus called Paulownia has several species, mostly native to Asia, that grow fast on difficult soil. They tend to thrive after forest fires, which kill its enemy fungus. It's also called the Princess Tree.

The genus, originally Pavlovnia but now usually spelled Paulownia, was named in honour of Anna Paulowna, queen consort of The Netherlands (1795–1865), daughter of Tsar Paul I of Russia. It is also called "princess tree" for the same reason.[1]

The tree also has a sweet tradition.

Paulownia is known in Japanese as ‘kiri’ and as ‘Princess Tree’ because it was once customary to plant a tree of this kind when a baby girl was born, and then to make it into a dresser as a wedding present when she married.

Before you run out and find a princess Tree to welcome your little princess, consider whether you will realistically have the time and skills to actually build a dresser, or the money to pay a carpenter to do it. -via Nag on the Lake

(Image credit: Fanghong)


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

What is the Best X-Men Movie of All-Time?

According to Wikipedia, there have been ten X-Men movies so far. That's a bunch! If you've seen them all, you no doubt have your opinions on the quality of each one. Real X-Men fans will want to argue about anyone else's ranking of them, so head over to TVOM and see how your opinion meshes with their ranking of the five best X-Men films.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

North Carolina’s Shangri-La Stone Village

There's a miniature stone village in Prospect Hill, North Carolina, consisting of 27 buildings and other small-town structures. It was all hand-made by one man: Henry Warren. When Warren retired from farming, he gathered white flint rock and lovingly crafted each building over the last nine years of his life. He decorated the buildings with flea market finds, such as jewelry, gemstones, colored tile, and anything he thought would make Shangri-La look good. Heather gives us her impression of the village after visiting.

Now this is just my opinion, but I believe Shangri-La is sacred. Henry, a retired tobacco farmer with no history in art or architecture, devoted his retired years to creating art; and this art was meant to simply make people happy. There’s power in that. For nearly a decade he poured love and creativity into these buildings, with the nothing more than the intention of making the world more beautiful. You can feel that energy there. You can feel that these buildings were made for you, simply to make you feel good.

Warren died in 1977, but his family maintains the village, and welcomes visitors who want to enjoy his work. -via Metafilter, where you'll find more links to explore Shangri-La.

(Images credit: Flickr user Joel Haas)


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Making Up For It

Redditor CircleAddict works at Starbucks and had a customer encounter that didn't go quite right. He said, "A woman came through the drive through yesterday and got a little irritated with me because we didn't have drink carriers. Today, she came back and handed me this." In case you can't read the writing, it says:

Greetings Starbuck Barista! Yesterday at your drive through we had a less then cheerful encounter. At no fault of yours, you were out of carriers & said you could not take my empty cup (trash). I was less then understanding and my manner was curt.

I need to apologize. The thought of leaving a trail of unkindness like that is so not the path i want to reflect. Not for you, Not for me. You are a young man, clearly working hard to build a future & you should be commended. Keep up your attitude of cheer & hope. Stay hopeful no matter what kind of people cross your path (or drive thru :) )

Surly, God has good blessing in store. You taught this ole lady something yesterday about, Kindness, Compassion & staying humble. I thank you! Debbie

God Bless you today & all your todays.

Debbie was most likely affected by other things going on in her life, but she realized that didn't make it okay to lash out at a stranger. Good on her. The discussion below the post was full of commenters who were sorry about ruining someone's day and stories of strangers who went out of their way to apologize for rudeness. The world could use more of that.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Catnip Ain’t the Only Plant That’ll Send Your Kitty to Blissville

The active ingredient in catnip that gives such pleasure to our kitties is nepetalactone. It doesn't have much effect on other species, but cats go wild -or at least some cats do. If you've had multiple cats, you've probably noticed at least one that didn't react to catnip at all. You have to feel sorry for those cats, while their housemates are enjoying a catnip-fueled high. However, there are some other substances, such as silver vine, Tatarian honeysuckle, and valerian root, that can stimulate cats. Molecular biologist Sebastian Bol performed an experiment to see how cats would react to these plants.

With 100 different cats, he rubbed the plant matter on a sock or a square of carpet, and set the material in the cats’ line of sight. Then he waited. If the cat approached and backed away, he considered that a denial. “Animals tend to move towards things they like, and back away from things they consider threats,” says Buffington. After each success or denial, he’d wait about five minutes for the cat to relax, then try again with another plant type. The response rate was striking: Almost 80 percent of the cats responded to the silver vine (a higher response rate than even nip, which got less than 70 percent of the cats high), and roughly 40 percent each for valerian root and honeysuckle.

The kicker is that these other plants do not contain nepetalactone. Read about research into cat euphoria at Wired. -via Metafilter

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

Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Chop & Steele Prank Morning Shows

Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher of the Found Footage Festival are not strongmen, but they play two of them on TV. They took on the duo name Chop & Steele and convinced various local TV morning shows to feature them. Their strongman act is obviously lame, but it's probably the best they could do. See a compilation of those attempts at Found Footage Festival.

The newscasters were no doubt rolling their eyes when the camera wasn't on them, but they had to put on a brave face and act like nothing was wrong. Esquire interviewed Pickett and Prueher about the stunt and found out it was ridiculously easy to pull off. After all, they had done this same stunt a few years before. -via Tastefully Offensive


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Marx Brothers in A Day at the Races

Neatorama presents a guest post from actor, comedian, and voiceover artist Eddie Deezen. Visit Eddie at his website or at Facebook.

It was 1937 and the Marx Brothers were back with their seventh motion picture A Day at the Races. A Day at the Races was the follow-up to the boys' biggest and most popular film, their previous effort, 1935's A Night at the Opera.

A Day at the Races was their second film for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. It was also their second film post-Zeppo, the youngest Marx Brother, their wooden straight man, having retired as an actor after 1933's Duck Soup.

Trying to duplicate the successful formula of A Night at the Opera, before beginning filming, Groucho, Chico and Harpo took a live version of A Day at the Races on the road. Before live crowds, jokes and gags were gauged and either kept or discarded.

Most of the A Day at the Races screenplay and gags were written  by Al Boasberg, who was also a major contributor to A Night at the Opera. But Boasberg demanded full credit as the film's screenwriter, a request MGM was not willing to grant, thus a furious Boasberg requested his name be erased from the film's credits altogether. Final writing credits went to Robert Pirosh and George Seaton.

A Night at the Opera director Sam Wood returned to the helm. Irving Thalberg, MGM's "boy genius," was the film's producer, but sadly, he died unexpectedly of pneumonia just two weeks into production. Groucho was later to claim he "lost all interest" in film-making after the death of Thalberg.

Thalberg loved the Marx Brothers and being the head of MGM, he made sure they were protected and their films were kept at a grade A level. After his passing, the production, writing, and general caring and interest level of Marx Brothers movies took a massive drop, never to return to the A Day at the Races high level again.

Continue reading

Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Haunting Face of a Man Who Lived 700 Years Ago

Meet Context 958. That's just his scientific designation. We don't know his name, but we have some idea of what the man looked like when he was alive during the 13th century, thanks to a facial reconstruction done on a skeleton excavated from a medieval cemetery at St. John’s College in Cambridge, England.    

He was just slightly over 40 years old when he died. His skeleton showed signs of considerable wear-and-tear, so he likely lead a tough and hard working life. His tooth enamel stopped growing during two occasions in his youth, suggesting he likely lived through bouts of famine or sickness when he was young. The archaeologists found traces of blunt force trauma inflicted to the back of his head, which healed over before he died. The researchers aren’t sure what he did for a living, but they think he was a working-class person who specialized in some kind of trade.

There's more to learn about Context 958 at Gizmodo, and also about the project that brought him to us in almost photographic detail.    

(Image credit: Dr. Chris Rynn, University of Dundee)


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Camper Trailer Topped with a Boat

The top of the trailer is removable. Flip it over, and there's your fishing boat! It's a 1954 Ford Courier with a matching Kom-Pak Sportsman Travel Trailer. The 16' boat doubles as the trailer roof. Yeah, that means you can only go boating when it's not raining, but duh. This particular model is quite rare, and wouldn't look this good if it were used for real camping and boating, inside of showing off at classic car shows. See a 1952 model, too. -via reddit


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

How Dinosaurs Get Their Names

Those who have the honor of naming a new species can put a lot of thought into it, to come up with a wonderfully evocative name like Tyrannosaurus rex. Or they can go the easy route, like whoever named Allosaurus -it means "different lizard." And then there are names that make us want to know the story behind it, like Pantydraco.

For many, naming one of these ancient beasts is serious business. “To me, choosing a name for a new dinosaur species has always been a heavy task,” says North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences paleontologist Lindsay Zanno. Not only are names necessary for scientific communication, but dinosaurs—like planets—have their own pop culture pull that makes naming a new species a way to excite the public. “If wisely chosen, a name can become a vector for connecting nature and humanity through shared culture, for inspiring curiosity, or for awakening a long dead species in our collective imaginations,” Zanno says.

But now that new species are found more often, names get pulled from every corner of society. Read about dinosaur naming conventions and how they have changed at Smithsonian. By the way, the "panty" in Pantydraco is a Welsh word.

(Image credit: Nobu Tamura)


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

Why Do Some Countries Pronounce Z as "Zed"?

When you hear someone say "zed" instead of "zee," you probably assume they are British. Not so! It turns out that "zed" is used in a lot of countries, but not the U.S. We just have to be different.

(YouTube link)

Simon Whistler of Today I Found Out explains why "zed" is used for the last letter of the English alphabet. There are quite a few steps to the American "zee." Hey, do you think the difference in alphabet pronunciation may have something to do with the different ways Americans and Brits pronounce the "e" in "zebra"?  -via Geeks Are Sexy


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Movie Elvis Did with Mary Tyler Moore

Neatorama presents a guest post from actor, comedian, and voiceover artist Eddie Deezen. Visit Eddie at his website or at Facebook.

Change of Habit was Elvis Presley's 31st and final film. Although Elvis was to appear later in two documentaries- Elvis: That's the Way It Is (1970) and Elvis On Tour (1972), Change of Habit was Elvis's last appearance in a movie as an actor.

Change of Habit was originally planned as a Mary Tyler Moore vehicle, Mary was then under contract to Universal Studios. Doris Day was just winding up her film career, starring in With Six You Get Eggroll (1968), coincidentally, at the same time, and the studio was grooming Mary to take her place (kind of) as "America's sweetheart." Mary had  finished her career in the iconic tv series The Dick Van Dyke Show in 1966 and made a movie, the box office smash Thoroughly Modern Millie (co-starring with Julie Andrews) the following year.



When Elvis Presley signed on to be Mary's leading man in Change of Habit, of course, everything changed. The formula "Elvis movies" all made money, but the law of diminishing returns had finally set in and the profits from the King's films was growing mighty thin by this time.

Elvis had made his classic "Christmas special" the previous December (which would later become batter known as "the Elvis Comeback Special") and being cast in Change of Habitwas actually part of a package deal his manager Colonel Tom Parker had made for Elvis. Elvis was paid $1.25 million for the Christmas special and Change of Habit combined. This allowed Parker to be able to boast that he had procured his usual salary of "a million dollars a film" for his client.

Continue reading

Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 

The Zeppelin Stamps That Enraged 1930s Collectors

In the 1930s, the Graf Zeppelin made its first airmail delivery to the Americas. It was a spectacular sight, somewhat akin to aliens landing on earth. The German airship company was proud of the world's largest zeppelin, but were confronted from the beginning with what would eventually be the downfall of all such airships: how to make them profitable?

Instead, the Graf’s parent company, German Zeppelin Airship Works, decided to recoup costs by commissioning special stamps from the countries on the tour route. Only letters with these stamps on them would be accepted onto the airship, which would then deliver them to their destinations. This was the only commercial transatlantic air mail option available at the time, and was days faster than sending a letter by boat. Brazil, Bolivia, Germany, and Spain all made the Zeppelin stamps, and 93 percent of the proceeds from each stamp was funneled back into German Zeppelin Airship Works.

After some debate, the U.S. Post Office decided to get in on the game as well, designing and printing a run of Graf Zeppelin stamps in a matter of weeks. They called this a gesture of goodwill toward Germany, and pledged to also contribute 93 percent of the revenue to the Airship Works. Secretly, though, they expected that an enthusiastic population of American collectors would snap up most of the stamps, keeping them out of circulation, and ensuring that the Post Office held onto most of the money.

Well, as we know from the short-lived era of zeppelins, the scheme didn't work out in the long run. Read the story of the zeppelin stamps at Atlas Obscura.


Load More Comments
Start New Comment Thread...
Preview Comment
Start New Thread Post Your Reply

 
Email This Post to a Friend
""

Separate multiple emails with a comma. Limit 5.

 

Success! Your email has been sent!

close window

Page 2 of 847     prev | next | last

Profile for Miss Cellania

  • Member Since 2012/08/04


Statistics

Blog Posts

  • Posts Written 25,397
  • Comments Received 94,206
  • Post Views 38,995,727
  • Unique Visitors 31,369,324
  • Likes Received 35,164

Comments

  • Threads Started 3,962
  • Replies Posted 2,598
  • Likes Received 1,743
X

This website uses cookies.

This website uses cookies to improve user experience. By using this website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

I agree
 
Learn More