Welcome to 2007!

If, like me, you never remember to get a new calendar until the start of the new year, you could always just print out a copy of the Classic Pulp Sci Fi Magazine Cover Calendar downloadable from the Website at the End of the Universe. [via Boing Boing] While I would generally object to what is essentially a bikini-girl calendar, I love the old sci fi art and I think it’s really interesting to consider the images as historical artifacts. There are actually four years worth of calendars at the site to browse through, if you are interested in such … Continue reading Welcome to 2007!

Squeaky sausage dogs

Next time someone commits you to making balloon animals, head on over to How to Twist a Balloon Dog for awesome step-by-step instructions and a cute little animated gif of the process in action. Then go twack the person who committed you to making balloon animals over the head with a blunt instrument.

Get some culture!

Tomorrow is Museum Day. What is Museum Day? Started by the Smithsonian Institution, it is a day when a number of museums across the country offer free admission to visitors who present the Museum Day Card available on the page I just linked to. For those in Western PA, the Carnegie is participating, so this is a great opportunity to check it out if you haven’t been before.

Local Color

A faithful reader mailed me the photo below last night, demonstrating the perfect merging of Pittsburgh’s fanaticism about the Steelers and Pittsburgh’s utter lack of interest in helping people get around the city who do not already know what they are doing. Be assured, this is not an off-duty bus, and the over-door route number signs have been replaced with the same message. I’m not sure if this exceeds the insanity of Washington, er, that is, Steeler, PA (damn – was I supposed to change my business cards?). Flipping channels last night, an advertisement showing that a local channel’s entire … Continue reading Local Color

Office Supply Woes

I don’t understand why it is impossible to find a pad of blank, unlined 8 1/2 x 11 paper. Not an art pad or anything – what I think is called a “glue top scratch pad”. I’ve been getting them at the campus bookstore, but they don’t sell them anymore, and it turns out nobody else does either. What is so difficult about what I am looking for? Yes, that website I linked sells them, but not cheaply and I shouldn’t have to go online to find such a thing. While searching around, though, I found the best Wikipedia entry … Continue reading Office Supply Woes


Don’t miss out on the fun – today is International Talk Like A Pirate Day! Perhaps after work I’ll dust off my copy of Pirates and play a game….

Magnetic Mischief

To all appearances, the “credit card” to the left might appear to be your run of the mill fake card that companies put in their mailings all the time. But American Express has reached new lows – what you are seeing there is not just a phony card, but it is in fact a magnet designed to look like a credit card. One wonders what marketing genius decided to promote their product with exactly the item that destroys their product. Or perhaps they’re hoping for a little industrial sabotage against their competitors already in your wallet….

Research Ethics

A new, informal study shows that scientists may be self-censoring to avoid controversial research. This article presents this as fairly categorically bad, implying that those raising the controversies are stifling academic freedom and intellectual endeavors. But isn’t it good if our scientists are feeling pressure to stop and think about whether the advantages of their research are really worthwhile? Am I supposed to feel bad that “Others said they have given up experiments on dogs – traditional objects of medical research – to avoid the wrath of animal rights activists.”? Or this statement: Today, Blass said, ethics overseers are unlikely … Continue reading Research Ethics

Line Wars

Oh my – the Seattle Star Wars fan is at it again, settling down in line four and a half months before Episode III is scheduled to open. He’s weblogging his wait this time too – caution, the current top post is a highly obscene rant against those telling him to get a life. Which, I have to say, kind of goes against the screed in one of the posts lauding his waiting as a near-religious defiance of modern consumer culture. Also interesting is this comment, posted in his 1/7/04 “Get a Life” entry: Hey… I still want to know … Continue reading Line Wars

Toro Tissue Ring

I’m sure this is entirely impractical in a real house where clutter on a table gets shoved into each other and cats or small children run around, but I’m fascinated by the Toro Tissue Ring. Maybe for one’s office. Ooo – Drugstore.com and the Container Store both sell them. I’d have pegged this as more of an Ikea product….