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Vintage Women's Hygiene: A Hint in Confidence

The cover simply stating “A Hint in Confidence” – discreet, unsuspecting; Open it and an eminent authority will enlighten you you to the world of female intimate hygiene using lysol douche. For your health.

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by John Spain, posted Aug 12, 04:07 PM · Comment

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It would seem Miami’s own Joey Daoud of Coffee and Celluloid’s documentary on an abandoned rocket silo in the Everglades has been picked up by Boing Boing and Gizmodo. Give it a gander (just don’t get it twisted)

by John Spain, posted Jun 29, 08:53 AM · Comment

Celebrate the End of the World with Film

Last man

Are you currently huddled on your couch, shaking under the blankets while awaiting the rapture on Saturday? Why not watch a few end of the world films to pass your final hours? Here are a few lesser known selections for your viewing (dis)pleasure.

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Reminder: Judgment Day this Saturday!

It's the end of the world

Don’t forget, Judgment Day is Saturday, May 21, 2011.
Are you ready?

If you don’t make it upwards – join in on the post-rapture looting. RSVP here!

NPR breaks it down.

There’s no way this Camping fellow could be wrong about it. I mean, just look at him! He knows.

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On the one hand: it’s genius. On the other: it’s an amazing testimony to American laziness and wealth. On a third, largely metaphorical hand: if it doesn’t get you out of bed, nothing will. Short of possibly a skittering, angry robot. Here’s some advice: buy a cat. You’ll never sleep past dawn again.

by John Spain, posted Feb 11, 08:30 AM · Comment

Good News! The World Will Not End in 2012.
It's gonna end in 2011, suckers!

Surprise! You may or may not have heard the news, but the world will in fact end in 2011 – not in 2012 as previously expected. Judgment Day will be May 21st, and the fires will end us on October 21st. A clean, exact five month span. Start doing everything you’ve ever wanted to do in your life/repent now!

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Surprise, ladies! Crying isn't sexy.
but writing about it is kind of amusing

crying girl

If you say you’ve never cried during sex, you’re lying. You are a big fat, shameful liar. Sure, it’s embarrassing, but maybe for more reasons than because you have shitty relationships and can’t keep a boyfriend, maybe it’s also embarrassing because it’s a turnoff. First Science and then the NYT reported that preliminary experiments have shown that tears can be used for manipulation (big news), “sending chemical signals that influence the behavior of other people,” and they apparently turn men off (for real?). Here’s the full article.

Though the article is about a sort of serious subject, that of avoiding getting laid or fending off unwanted sexual attention, there were a few memorable quotes I plucked out for my own entertainment. Whether you think they’re funny or not is irrelevant to me.

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The singularity cometh

god The singularity, people. It’s when machines become smarter then us. What happens then? They can design machines smarter then themselves, and those machines then design smarter machines still, and we get a rapid escalation of machine intelligence with consequences that are utterly impossible to predict.

When does it happen? Nobody knows, but maybe soon — it sounds like computers are starting to be able to figure more and more shit out. Get ready, the our machine overloards may not be far off.

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Sometimes you just need a little lovin'

tortoise sex

While up in the Hamptons last week, I came across these two tortoises going at it hot and heavy early one afternoon. I was walking down a path through a little animal refuge near a military airport, and I hear a grunting coming from behind a bit of shrubbery, something like maybe a gigantic frog, and I investigate and it’s these two, enjoying each other’s bodies in their pleasantly shaded little spot of the woods.

You’ve never thought of tortoises as really sensual creatures, have you? But they are, and sometimes it’s worth remembering.

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Avogadro's theory

Avogadro's Theory

 

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Part I: first impressions on Haiti

haiti 2

Jimmy just returned from a weeklong medical trip to Haiti. Here are his first impressions.

Haiti is a country that needs friends. During that all-too-brief window between the Cold War and the War on Terror, Bill Clinton attempted to make Haiti an example of American intervention on behalf of human rights instead of capitalism or military strategy. At the time, he seemed like the captain of a pick-up basketball team picking the scrawniest kid on the court first overall. Now, we admire him for bringing Haiti into the Clintonian sphere of influence, but there remains a vast distance between Haiti and that part of the world not related to Bill Clinton.

To be honest, my interest in Haiti, before and since the earthquake, has been cool at best. My Lebanese heritage draws me to the intrigue of the Middle East. I married into a Latino family and am trying to become fluent in Spanish. I was reared to be cultured in Western art, so I worship the European masters. The Haitians have their own language, religions, and culture, which render it fascinating but inaccessible to the intellectually lazy. My sister studied Afro-Caribbean religions in graduate school, so I thought, “Fuck it, I can always say my sister knows about that shit.”

It was in this state of mind that I was offered a chance to go to Haiti to work as a nurse for a week at the end of July. The most preparation I did was to read a book by the doctor who began the Medishare program. I also leafed through a French phrase book. The next thing I knew I was on a plane to Port-au-Prince.

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Here’s a fun fact for you: doing mental math drives out a song that’s stuck in your head. I have no idea why, it was just told to me by someone this week. Tonight as I was walking home from a very geeky thing I’ll talk about later, I looked up at the crescent moon and immediately had “Harvest Moon” stuck in my head. A few whistling steps later I realized I needed to use this power wisely – I’d recommend you do the same.

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Do not even start with “the oil spill cleanup is good for the economy.” That is exactly the type of crap that makes you look like an idiot.

by Alesh Houdek, posted Jun 21, 02:31 PM · Comment

In the spirit of vomicking… we present Splice

splice baby

Halfway through my screening of Splice a woman in the audience vomited all over the floor.

This is not the first time I’ve encountered a patron upchucking in a movie theater. Before a showing of the movie The Brave One, a young boy heaved into a garbage can. Incidentally, the plumbing in the entire multi-level movie theater was also on the fritz; picture that mise-en-scene. I still don’t understand why his mother brought him to that movie, and why they remained when the kid was clearly sick as a dog, but I suppose the high cost of movie tickets necessitated that decision, or perhaps she just really loved Jodie Foster.

I digress. Splice, while gory and disgusting, should not make the average viewer puke. It’s less of a horror film than the previews would lead one to believe – the horrors here are mostly ethical, unsettling and bizarre. This is science fiction minus the science. The filmmakers don’t try to provide any explanation about how it’s done or why things turn out the way they do. The pivotal splicing scene is set to the tune of late-90s techno music and a computer screen that simply reads “Human/Animal Splice: Successful.”

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The largest oil spills in history (Source). The Deepwater Horizon is not the largest, though it will be the most costly cleanup. Also: Oil spills in Nigeria — there have been hundreds of incidents per year since drilling began in the 1970s; for example, between 1976 and 1996, more than 2.4 million barrels were spilled into the environment.

by Alesh Houdek, posted Jun 9, 11:39 AM · Comment

Look at this asshole: Adam Carolla

adam fucking carolla

Back in the 90s, when casual misogyny was still considered sort of cool, Adam Carolla used to do this terrible thing on Comedy Central with Jimmy Kimmel called The Man Show. I think I caught the best-of episode once, and there were two funny skits (one of which, just FYI, involved something called a “wife-leash”) and an metric assload of offensive bullshit with no redeeming value.

Well, this asshole is back, and it’s a happy reflection on our society that the best he can do to drum up attention for whatever crap he’s doing now is to write guest columns on Gizmodo. So! About what will we have the privilege of reading Adam Carolla’s opinion? Believe it or do not, but he’s writing about how great electric toothbrushes are:

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Gushing fiasco
The strange language of the BP oil spill aftermath

BP killed aquaman

Are you like me — have you been waiting for someone to use the phrase “black swan” in reference to the BP Deepwater Horizon spill in the gulf? Well, it’s happened, so let’s look at the literary consequences thus far of this thing. I bet the science fiction writers are kicking themselves for not thinking of a disaster like this. I don’t know what SF writers could do with the scenario, but presumably something more coherent than our collective slack-jawed response of the worldwide media. But let’s put aside the obvious need for a sweeping explanation of what this means for humanity, and instead look at some of the fun wordplay that has come out of the disaster.

There is of course the much commented-on string of failed hole-patching attempts: “top kill,” “containment dome,” “blowout preventer,” “junk shot,” and the latest, “sweeping arm system.” One wonders who’s naming these procedures; is it BP’s engineering department or public relations team, or is it some sort of in-house poetry department? (I do not believe BP has a poetry department, but it really would not be so far-fetched. This is a company which, were it a country, would have the 34th largest economy in the world — larger than Finland — and which in any case produces two magazines for public consumption.)

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