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Creepy Clown Sex

from The Daily Wire

Teen Dresses As Clown And Stabs Boyfriend During Sex. Here’s The Creepy Text She Sent Him Before The Attack.

ByAMANDA PRESTIGIACOMO

A 19-year-old mother was sentenced to 11 years behind bars after dressing up as a clown and repeatedly stabbing her boyfriend during sexual intercourse.

Zoe Adams stabbed her then-boyfriend, then-17-year-old Kieran Bewick, after sending him a text stating that men are only good as a “human sacrifce.”

“I don’t think about males unless said male is strapped up and being used as a human sacrifice – you should be grateful you are not part of it,” reads the text message.

The duo were apparently engaging in some sexual fantasy of Adams’ in July of 2017 in Wigton, Cumbria. Bewick, who suffers from a fear of clowns, was supposed to be tied up during the sex but negotiated to have Adams only use a pillow to place over his face as she was dressed as a clown.

During the trial, Adams claimed she didn’t remember the encounter but noted that her stabbing Bewick was an “overreaction” to him kissing her neck.

“I did stab him – but I overreacted,” Adams told the court.

“I have always had a fear of clowns and Zoe knew this. This will now only increase my fear of clowns,” he added.

[ click to read full story at The Daily Wire ]

Posted on May 18, 2018 by Editor

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Tim Horton’s, Public Restroom

from deadspin

Woman Furiously Shits On Floor Of Tim Hortons, Throws It At Employees

by Samer Kalaf

A woman in Canada was so incensed about something Tim Hortons employees did or didn’t do that she dropped her pants, took a dump on the floor, threw it, grabbed some napkins to wipe her ass, threw those too, and left.

There is no pixelation in this sped-up LiveLeak video. You are going to see everything that this woman, full of rage and previously turds, does to forever sully the floor of this Tim Hortons located in Langley, British Columbia.

What’s particularly baffling, aside from the obvious, is the other customers who don’t really react to what’s happening. Maybe that’s because the tasteful barrier has censored most of it, or maybe it’s because there’s really nothing to do when a human decides to take a spiteful shit and fling it.

[ click to continue reading at deadspin ]

Posted on May 17, 2018 by Editor

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Welcome To The 50-year Rage Cycle

from The Guardian

Why are we living in an age of anger – is it because of the 50-year rage cycle?

From passive-aggressive notes on ambulance windscreens to bilious political discourse, it feels as though society is suddenly consumed by fury. What is to blame for this outpouring of aggression?

by Zoe Williams

Anger for G2‘Unprocessed anger pollutes the social sphere. Every outburst legitimises the next.’ Illustration: Ben Boothman at Agency Rush

A neighbour objected to a young couple from Newcastle being naked in their own home. “We are sick of seeing big bums, big boobs and little willy,” was the core message of the note, crescendoing to: “We will report you both for indecent exposure.” It is such a small thing, banal, without consequence. It connects to no wider narrative and conveys nothing but the bubbling discomfort of human beings living near each other. Yet when Karin Stone (one of the nakeds) posted the note on Facebook, 15,000 people pored over it. An Australian radio show interviewed her. I have got to be honest, I am heavily emotionally invested in the story myself and I do not regret a second of the time I have spent reading about it.

There is a through-line to these spurts of emotion we get from spectatorship: the subject matter is not important. It could be human rights abuse or a party-wall dispute; it does not matter, so long as it delivers a shot of righteous anger. Bile connects each issue. I look at that note, the prurience and prissiness, the mashup of capital and lower-case letters, the unlikeliness that its author has a smaller bum or a bigger willy, and I feel sure they voted for Brexit. The neighbours are delighted by their disgust for these vigorous, lusty newlyweds, I am delighted by my disgust for the neighbours, radio listeners in Australia are delighted. We see rage and we meet it with our own, always wanting more.

There was the mean note left on the car of a disabled woman (“I witnessed you and your young able-bodied daughter … walk towards the precinct with no sign of disability”); the crazed dyspepsia of the woman whose driveway was blocked briefly by paramedics while they tried to save someone’s life. Last week, Highways England felt moved to launch a campaign against road rage, spurred by 3,446 recorded instances in a year of motorists driving straight through roadworks. Violent crime has not gone up – well, it has, but this is thought mainly to reflect better reporting practices – but violent fantasies are ablaze. Political discourse is drenched in rage. The things people want to do to Diane Abbott and Luciana Berger make my eyes pop out of my head.

[ click to continue reading at The Guardian ]

Posted on May 16, 2018 by Editor

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Art From Autism

from artnet

The World’s Earliest Artists May Have Been Autistic, Scientists Say in a New Study

Could human artistic creativity be an evolutionary development?

Photo taken on June 16, Detail of a replica of “La Caverne du Pont-d’Arc”, or Chauvet cave. Photo: JEAN-PHILIPPE KSIAZEK/AFP/Getty Images.

Autistic humans may have been some of the world’s earliest artists. In a paper published in British academic journal Open Archaeology, scientists have identified a link between 33,000-year-old cave drawings, autism, and the survival of pre-historic humans during the Ice Age.

According to medical researcher Barry Wright and archaeologist Penny Spikins, the wintery conditions of the Ice Age contributed to the natural selection of individuals on the autism spectrum. The pair’s paper posits that autistic humans’ ability to concentrate on complex tasks for long periods of time helped them memorize their surroundings and recognize elaborate patterns—both essential skills for finding food.

“We suspect that the early development of inherited autism was in part an evolutionary response to ultra-harsh climatic conditions at the height of the last Ice Age,” Spikins told the Independent, “Without the development of autism-related abilities in some people, it is conceivable that humans would not have been able to survive in a freezing environment in which finding food required enhanced skills,” she said.

Posted on May 15, 2018 by Editor

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Tom Wolfe Gone

from Vanity Fair

How Tom Wolfe Became … Tom Wolfe

Michael Lewis delves deep into the archives of the legendary reporter turned novelist to discover what made the man in the white suit the voice of a journalistic generation.

BY MICHAEL LEWIS

Tom Wolfe, in his New York City study, in 2012. He started wearing white suits in 1962 because it was the custom in summer in his hometown of Richmond, Virginia. Photograph by Gasper Tringale.

I was 11 or maybe 12 years old when I discovered my parents’ bookshelves. They’d been invisible right up to the moment someone or something told me that the books on them were stuffed with dirty words and shocking behavior—a rumor whose truth was eventually confirmed by Portnoy’s Complaint. The book I still remember taking down from the shelf was Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers. The only word in the title I understood was “the.” The cover showed a picture of a bored-looking blonde housewife nestled in the lap of a virile black man. It seemed just the sort of thing to answer some questions I had about the facts of life. It didn’t. Instead, it described a cocktail party given in the late 1960s for the Black Panthers by Leonard Bernstein in his fancy New York City apartment. I’d never been to New York City, or heard of Leonard Bernstein, the conductor of the New York Philharmonic, and had only a vague notion of who or what a Black Panther revolutionary might be—and none of that turned out to matter. The book started out with this weird old guy, Leonard Bernstein, rising from his bed in the middle of the night and having a vision of himself delivering a speech to a packed concert hall while being heckled by a giant black man onstage beside him. I remember thinking: How would anyone know about someone else’s bizarre private vision? Was this one of those stories that really happened, like Bart Starr’s quarterback sneak to beat the Dallas Cowboys, or was it made up, like The Hardy Boys? Then, suddenly, I felt as if I were standing in Leonard Bernstein’s apartment watching his waiters serve appetizers to Black Panthers:

“MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM. THESE ARE NICE. LITTLE Roquefort cheese morsels rolled in crushed nuts. Very tasty. Very subtle. It’s the way the dry sackiness of the nuts tiptoes up against the dour savor of the cheese that is so nice, so subtle. Wonder what the Black Panthers eat out here on the hors d’oeuvre trail? Do the Panthers like little Roquefort cheese morsels rolled in crushed nuts this way, and asparagus tips in mayonnaise dabs, and meatballs petites au Coq Hardi, all of which are at this very moment being offered to them on gadrooned silver platters by maids in black uniforms with hand-ironed white aprons?”

Were the books grown-ups read supposed to make you laugh? I had no idea but …

[ click to continue reading at Vanity Fair ]

Posted on May 14, 2018 by Editor

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Why Dogs Are Cooler Than Guns

Posted on May 13, 2018 by Editor

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Wolverine Sloth Yum

from USA Today

Giant sloths with wolverine-like claws used to roam America, and humans hunted them

by Doyle Rice

Human footprint inside a sloth track. This compositeHuman footprint inside a sloth track. This composite track is part of a trackway in which the human appears to have stalked the sloth. (Photo: Matthew Bennett, Bournemouth University)

Although it sounds like a grade-B science fiction movie, fossils that our ancestors once hunted and fought giant ground sloths.

For the first time, scientists have uncovered fossilized footprints of ancient humans at the White Sands National Monument in New Mexico, a new study reports. And at the same site, those newly discovered human footprints were actually inside footprints of giant ground sloths — tall, fearsome creatures with sharp claws.

Scientists say this is evidence that the humans followed closely behind, or even “stalked” the sloths during the hunt.

“The White Sands trackway — a series of tracks and footprints — shows that someone followed a sloth, purposely stepping in their tracks as they did so,” said study lead author David Bustos, the park naturalist who discovered the trackway 10 years ago.

[ click to continue reading at USAT ]

 

Posted on May 2, 2018 by Editor

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P¡NK is so Punk

Posted on May 1, 2018 by Editor

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Steve Explained

from Public Radio International

The mysterious aurora known as ‘Steve,’ explained

by Adam Wernick

STEVEA composite of images captures “Steve” (Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement) over Manitoba, Canada.  / NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Thanks to collaboration between citizen scientists and astronomers, a strange phenomenon in the night sky, dubbed “Steve,” has finally been explained.

In 2017, a glowing purple-and-green ribbon across the heavens mystified sky-watchers because it showed up much further south than the famous northern lights, or aurora borealis. These observers decided to call it “Steve,” echoing the woodland creatures in the children’s movie “Over the Hedge.”

For a time, nobody knew what Steve actually was or what caused it. Now there’s a bona fide scientific explanation, according to NASA space scientist Liz MacDonald.

“Steve is a new type of aurora structure that can be seen in the northern or southern sky further south than the usual aurora,” MacDonald explains. “What we now know from the satellite observations is that this structure is associated with a very strong flow of the charged particles in the upper atmosphere that you can actually see when you’re looking at Steve. That signature from the satellite observations — this very narrow, long, purple arc — is actually something that scientists know and have studied for a long time. It’s something called a sub-auroral ion drift.”

[ click to continue reading at PRI ]

Posted on April 30, 2018 by Editor

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Steamboat To Blow?

from The Independent

World’s biggest active geyser erupts at Yellowstone National Park for third time in weeks

Increased activity at Steamboat Geyser after three years sat dormant

by Tom Barnes

The world’s largest active geyser has erupted for the third time in less than six weeks.

Steamboat Geyser, in Yellowstone National Park, erupted at around 6.30am local time on Friday morning, geologists said.

The eruption is the latest event in a rare period of activity at the geyser this year, following similar water discharges on March 15 and April 19 this year.

Before this year, Steamboat had not erupted since September 2014.

The US Geological Survey said all events so far in 2018 had been smaller than recent major activity observed in 2013 and 2014.

[ click to continue reading at The Independent ]

Posted on April 29, 2018 by Editor

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Merd!

from The Telegraph

French museum discovers half of its collection are fakes

by David Chazan

Collioure in the Pyrenees by Étienne Terrus. The museum discovered half of the paintings it believed were by the artist were forgeries Collioure in the Pyrenees by Étienne Terrus. The museum discovered half of the paintings it believed were by the artist were forgeries

A state-owned French art museum has discovered that more than half of its collection consists of worthless fakes and experts fear that other public galleries may also be stuffed with forgeries.

An art historian raised the alarm after noticing that paintings attributed to Etienne Terrus showed buildings that were only constructed after the artist’s death in 1922.

Experts confirmed that 82 of the 140 works displayed at the Terrus museum in Elne, the artist’s birthplace in southern France, were fakes.

[ click to continue reading at The Telegraph ]

Posted on April 28, 2018 by Editor

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Returning ‘Firing Line’

from Deadline

‘Firing Line’: PBS Reloads Public-Affairs Show With Host Margaret Hoover

by

EXCLUSIVE: PBS is bringing back an iconic property after nearly two decades. The pubcaster said today that a new version of Firing Line, the William F. Buckley-hosted public-affairs show it aired from 1966-99, will premiere in June. The new host is political strategist and commentator Margaret Hoover.

Produced by WNET/Thirteen, the weekly series will bring together the brightest minds and freshest voices from across the political spectrum to engage in a contest of ideas about important issues confronting our nation, PBS said. Firing Line with Margaret Hoover will launch at 10 AM Saturday, June 2, on New York’s Thirteen, which will air the first three episodes before the series bows on PBS stations nationwide.

The pubcaster said the show will maintain the character of the original Buckley-fronted series, providing a platform that is diligent in its commitment to a balanced exchange of opinion. The series, PBS notes, comes at a time when meaningful discourse in needed more than ever.

[ click to continue reading at Deadline ]

Posted on April 27, 2018 by Editor

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Wow, that’s a lot of pumpkin seeds.

Posted on April 26, 2018 by Editor

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Grand Unified Math Finally?

from New Scientist

Theorem of everything: The secret that links numbers and shapes

For millennia mathematicians have struggled to unify arithmetic and geometry. Now one young genius could have brought them in sight of the ultimate prize

By Gilead Amit

numbers artwork

IF JOEY was Chloe’s age when he was twice as old as Zoe was, how many times older will Zoe be when Chloe is twice as old as Joey is now?

Or try this one for size. Two farmers inherit a square field containing a crop planted in a circle. Without knowing the exact size of the field or crop, or the crop’s position within the field, how can they draw a single line to divide both the crop and field equally?

You’ve either fallen into a cold sweat or you’re sharpening your pencil (if you can’t wait for the answer, you can check the bottom of this page). Either way, although both problems count as “maths” – or “math” if you insist – they are clearly very different. One is arithmetic, which deals with the properties of whole numbers: 1, 2, 3 and so on as far as you can count. It cares about how many separate things there are, but not what they look like or how they behave. The other is geometry, a discipline built on ideas of continuity: of lines, shapes and other objects that can be measured, and the spatial relationships between them.

Mathematicians have long sought to build bridges between these two ancient subjects, and construct something like a “grand unified theory” of their discipline. Just recently, one brilliant young researcher might have brought them decisively closer. His radical new geometrical insights might not only unite mathematics, but also help solve one of the deepest number problems of them all: the riddle of the primes.

[ click to continue reading at New Scientist ]

Posted on April 25, 2018 by Editor

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A TRUE HERO – Give this man every award and accolade available

Posted on April 24, 2018 by Editor

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from the New York Times

No Sweatpants in Public: Inside the Rule Books for N.F.L. Cheerleaders

By Ken Belson

Photographs by Associated Press and Getty Images

Cheerleaders for the Carolina Panthers, known as the TopCats, must arrive at the stadium on game days at least five hours before kickoff. Body piercings and tattoos must be removed or covered. Water breaks can be taken only when the Panthers are on offense. TopCats must leave the stadium to change into their personal attire.

Baltimore Ravens cheerleaders were subject to regular weigh-ins and are expected to “maintain ideal body weight,” according to a handbook from 2009. The Cincinnati Ben-Gals were even more precise in recent years: Cheerleaders had to be within three pounds of their “ideal weight.”

Some cheerleaders must pay hundreds of dollars for their uniforms, yet are paid little more than minimum wage. Cheerleaders must sell raffle tickets and calendars and appear at charity events and golf tournaments, yet they receive none of the proceeds. Cheerleader handbooks, seven of which have been reviewed by The New York Times, include personal hygiene tips, like shaving techniques and the proper use of tampons. In some cases, wearing sweatpants in public is forbidden.

[ click to continue reading at NYT ]

Posted on April 23, 2018 by Editor

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Friedkin Returns

from The Guardian

William Friedkin: ‘You don’t know a damn thing, and neither do I’

The Exorcist director returns to his demonic roots with a new documentary, but he’s not interested in discussing your skepticism

A video clip featuring William Friedkin recently experienced a small level of virality among online film circles, in which the film-maker dresses down Nicolas Winding Refn after the younger director declares his own film Only God Forgives to be a masterpiece. Friedkin repeatedly calls for a medic, compares Refn’s film unfavorably to Citizen Kane, and most memorably, uses a vivid metaphor that puts the “anal” in “analogy”.

Friedkin, speaking on a drizzly afternoon in his suite at New York’s Carlyle Hotel, wants to make it clear that he bears no ill will to Refn. “I like him! He’s a nice guy. I like him very much.” But the larger truth underlying their charged exchange persists: William Friedkin simply does not give a damn.

He’s aged 82 now, and seven years out from the release of his last film. (That was 2011’s chicken-fried neo-noir Killer Joe, a classically Friedkinian work in its marriage of extreme, lurid material with tightly controlled aesthetic rigor.) He’s on the press circuit once again because he’s finally got a new film to promote, an entirely self-funded documentary titled The Devil and Father Amorth. The project dips back into Friedkin’s past as the man behind The Exorcist, chronicling the real-life purging of a demon by a Vatican higher-up. Skeptics will be tempted to place the words “real-life” in scare quotes, and the film doesn’t mount a particularly convincing case as to why they shouldn’t have that caveat. It’s here that Friedkin’s blithe disregard for what the general public thinks emerges as the source of all his power; believe him or don’t believe him, it’s all the same as far as he’s concerned.

[ click to continue reading at The Guardian ]

Posted on April 22, 2018 by Editor

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4 ’68 Radicals

from The LA Times

Four radical and radically original pieces of music that blew up the modernist status quo in 1968

By MARK SWED

On a cold Berkeley morning early in December 1968, I cut class and joined a queue on Telegraph Avenue, waiting for Discount Records to open. The line wasn’t as long as the one I’d joined for the Beatles’ White Album a week or two before, but it was sizable and included many of the same fans. This time our impatience was for the first recording of Terry Riley’s transformative “In C.”

“In C,” which had premiered in San Francisco four years earlier, would ultimately be credited with formulating the Minimalist movement in music that Steve Reich (who performed in the “In C” premiere), Philip Glass and later John Adams would further pioneer and eventually make mainstream. Minimalism would herald an unexpected inventive return to consonance, traditional harmony and pulse, all of which had little appeal to modern music, academic or avant-garde.

I later carried the LP, which came with the score of the piece (a first) into a class on fugue writing. I hadn’t known at the time that Riley had taken the same class with the same professor, composer William Denny, a dozen years earlier when he was a student at the University of California.

Denny was a refined and mild-mannered musical conservative who could bring himself to teach in the afternoon only after he had a few cocktails with lunch. He required us to write only in ink using fountain pens equipped with music nibs. We studied the same 19th-century French textbook that Debussy railed against at the turn of the 20th century.

Riley’s “In C” violated all that Denny held holy. It is simply a collection of 53 melodic motives, all in or around the key of C. Any instrument or vocalist — and any number of them — can play or sing. Each motive is repeated, over a pulse, as long as each performer wants before moving on.

When he saw my recording of “In C,” Denny became startlingly apoplectic. Riley, he said, had been a brilliant student, and now look what he had done! Centuries’ worth of contrapuntal development that led to Bach’s sublime fugues and Bartok’s wondrous string quartets was seemingly discarded by the stroke of a musical anarchist. I was told not only that I couldn’t bring that sacrilege into the classroom, but to get it out of the music building and that the only place for it on campus was the trash can.

That’s when I knew the revolution had begun.

[ click to  continue reading at LAT ]

Posted on April 21, 2018 by Editor

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Dead Black Market Hummingbirds

from National Geographic

Inside the Black Market Hummingbird Love Charm Trade

By

There’s a witch in San Diego who casts spells to “trap a man” and “dominate him” so “he’ll always come back.” She has a shop on San Ysidro Boulevard, one mile from the busiest Mexico border crossing in the United States, near a pawnshop, a liquor store, a furniture market, and the Smokenjoy Hookah Lounge, where DJ music thumps on Friday nights.

But you don’t need to go to her shop for magic—you can join the tens of thousands watching her on YouTube. Like a wicked Martha Stewart creating potions instead of potpourri, she provides step-by-step instructions for her spells.

“This is the honey jar,” she tells viewers while introducing the ingredients on her workbench: photographs of two would-be lovers, a piece of paper with their names written on it three times, a small glass jar—and a dead hummingbird. She rolls the tiny animal inside the photographs and wraps the cigar-shaped bundle with hot-pink yarn nearly the same shade as her long, fake fingernails.

Showing only her arms and lower body on camera, she shields her identity as she swaddles the package in a sarcophagus of tacky flypaper, dips it in cinnamon spice, squeezes it into the jar, and spritzes it with perfumes and oils—pheromones—“so he’ll stay sexually attracted.” Restless balm “so he’ll be like, ‘Oh my God, I need to call her.’” Sleep oil “so he’ll be like a zombie.” Attraction oil “so he’ll be like, ‘Goddamn, you so beautiful, you so fine.’” Dominating oil “so you dominate his thoughts.”

Finally she fills the jar with a thick pour of golden honey and tops it with a sprinkle of rose petals. “I love this,” she says. “I’m already getting a really good vibe.”

[ click to continue reading at Nat Geo ]

Posted on April 20, 2018 by Editor

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Worms On The Moon

from The Telegraph

China plans to grow flowers and silkworms on the dark side of the moon

by 

China hopes to create a ‘mini biosphere’ on the dark side of the Moon, with flowers and silkworms sustaining each other as they grow on the lifeless lunar surface.

The unprecedented plan to create life in outer space is the most intriguing part of China’s lunar probe mission later this year, and could be a major boost for dreams that humans will one day live on the Moon.

The insects, plants, potato seeds and arabidopsis—a small flowering plant belonging to the mustard family – will be taken to the Moon on board the Chang’e-4 lander and rover in December.

They will be placed in an 18cm tall bucket-like tin made from special aluminum alloy materials, together with water, a nutrient solution, and a small camera and data transmission system.

A small tube will direct natural sunlight into the tin to help the plants and potato seeds grow. Although known figuratively as the “dark side” as it is unseen, the far side of the moon receives almost equal sunlight to the near side.

The next stage of the mini-econlogical system will see the plants emitting oxygen, which will feed the silkworms hatching from their cocoons.

The silkworms will them create carbon dioxide and produce waste that will allow the plants to grow, Chinese scientists say.

[ click to continue reading at The Telegraph ]

Posted on April 15, 2018 by Editor

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Miloš Forman Gone

from The LA Times

Miloš Forman, Oscar-winning Czech director of ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,’ dies at 86

By GINA PICCALO

Miloš Forman came of age as a filmmaker under the watchful eyes of the Soviets in postwar Czechoslovakia. And though he blossomed in exile in 1970s America, his memory of totalitarianism would forever be his muse.

In every one of his films, from “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” “Ragtime” and “Amadeus” to “The People vs. Larry Flynt” and “Man on the Moon,” Forman celebrated real-life outsiders and eccentrics who challenged the establishment with heroic self-expression.

Forman died Friday at age 86 at Danbury Hospital, near his home in Warren, Conn., according to a statement released by his agent. A winner of two Academy Awards for directing “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975) and “Amadeus” (1984), Forman was nominated again in 1997 for “The People vs. Larry Flynt.” His earlier films “The Fireman’s Ball” and “Loves of a Blonde” were nominated for best foreign language film.

Born Feb. 18, 1932, outside Prague, Forman was the youngest of three brothers. His father, a Jewish army reservist from World War I and university teacher, was arrested for disseminating banned books to his students. His Protestant mother was arrested after shopping at a local grocery where anti-Nazi propaganda was found. Both died in concentration camps, making Forman an orphan at age 10.

[ click to continue reading at LAT ]

Posted on April 14, 2018 by Editor

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What Exactly Happened To The Phuds?

from The New York Times

Never Solved, a College Dorm Fire Has Become One Man’s Obsession

The 1967 blaze at Cornell University killed 9, including members of a fast-track Ph.D. program. No one was ever charged, but an amateur investigator thinks he knows who set it.

By N. R. Kleinfield

Students awoke to what they thought was the murmur of children playing. They awoke to what they assumed was a pesky classmate banging on the door to borrow a textbook. They awoke from a lifelike dream that they were at a barbecue, could even smell the smoke. There was smoke. It was just after 4 in the morning. The dorm was on fire.

It had ignited in the basement lounge of the Cornell Heights Residential Club, a repurposed motel on the northern fringe of the expansive Cornell University campus in Ithaca, N.Y. Its principal residents were in the initial class of an experimental program inviting gifted students to earn a Ph.D. in six years. There were 50 of them (a few were elsewhere that night), and they called themselves Phuds or Fuds. The building also housed two dozen women on the second floor who were seniors or graduate students, plus three faculty counselors, a student adviser and a cook.

Bleary students scrambled to escape, some barefoot and one hobbling on crutches. Blinding smoke made it virtually impossible to reach the front doors, and few did. Students used shoehorns and grapefruit knives to detach screens and squirm out windows, or stumbled out a basement exit into the stabbing cold. A few jumped or knotted sheets together to shimmy down. Those on the second floor mostly backed down the ladders of firefighters or ones Phuds appropriated from a fraternity house. The cook was carried out unconscious by a muscular fraternity member and a Phud. John Finch, an associate English professor, got out, then sprinted back in to alert students, smacking furniture and screaming for them to run.

Afterward, many of the residents assembled at a nearby sorority. The mood darkened when the unimaginable news filtered in. Eight students died from asphyxiation. So did the heroic Mr. Finch. Three students were Phuds — Martha Beck, Jeffrey Smith and Peter Cooch — while the others were women from the second floor: Jennie Zu-wei Sun, Meimei Cheng, Anne McCormic, Carol Kurtz and Johanna Christina Wallden.

[ click to continue reading at NYT ]

Posted on April 13, 2018 by Editor

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Nice Save

Posted on April 3, 2018 by Editor

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All Hail HAL!

from The New York Times

What ‘2001’ Got Right

By Michael Benson

FRANKFURT, Germany — It’s a testament to the lasting influence of Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke’s film “2001: A Space Odyssey,” which turns 50 this week, that the disc-shaped card commemorating the German Film Museum’s new exhibition on the film is wordless, but instantly recognizable. Its face features the Cyclopean red eye of the HAL-9000 supercomputer; nothing more needs saying.

Viewers will remember HAL as the overseer of the giant, ill-fated interplanetary spacecraft Discovery. When asked to hide from the crew the goal of its mission to Jupiter — a point made clearer in the novel version of “2001” than in the film — HAL gradually runs amok, eventually killing all the astronauts except for their wily commander, Dave Bowman. In an epic showdown between man and machine, Dave, played by Keir Dullea, methodically lobotomizes HAL even as the computer pleads for its life in a terminally decelerating soliloquy.

Cocooned by their technology, the film’s human characters appear semi-automated — component parts of their gleaming white mother ship. As for HAL — a conflicted artificial intelligence created to provide flawless, objective information but forced to “live a lie,” as Mr. Clarke put it — the computer was quickly identified by the film’s initial viewers as its most human character.

This transfer of identity between maker and made is one reason “2001” retains relevance, even as we put incipient artificial intelligence technologies to increasingly problematic uses.

[ click to continue reading at NYT ]

Posted on April 2, 2018 by Editor

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29 Pastas

Posted on March 6, 2018 by Editor

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The Sky Is Falling Sometime In The Next Few Weeks

from The Guardian

China’s Tiangong-1 space station will crash to Earth within weeks

Experts say it is impossible to plot where module will re-enter the atmosphere, but the chance is higher in parts of Europe, US, Australia and New Zealand

by 

The Tiangong-1 space station, which is expected to come crashing to earth within weeks.

China’s first space station is expected to come crashing down to Earth within weeks, but scientists have not been able to predict where the 8.5-tonne module will hit.

The US-funded Aerospace Corporation estimates Tiangong-1 will re-enter the atmosphere during the first week of April, give or take a week. The European Space Agency says the module will come down between 24 March and 19 April.

In 2016 China admitted it had lost control of Tiangong-1 and would be unable to perform a controlled re-entry.

The statement from Aerospace said there was “a chance that a small amount of debris” from the module will survive re-entry and hit the Earth.

[ click to continue reading at The Guardian ]

Posted on March 5, 2018 by Editor

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Sandwiches Top Cause of Global Warming

from New Atlas

Is the humble sandwich a climate change culprit?

by David Szondy

Sandwiches have a surprisingly large carbon footprintSandwiches have a surprisingly large carbon footprint(Credit: Taden1/Depositphotos)

Scientists at the University of Manchester have found a surprising global warming culprit – sandwiches. In the first study of its kind, the researchers carried out an in-depth audit of various sandwiches throughout their life cycles and found the triangular meals could be responsible for the equivalent annual carbon emissions of 8.6 million cars in Britain alone.

In 1762, or so the story goes, the fourth Earl of Sandwich rocked the culinary world when he couldn’t be bothered to leave the gambling table to eat and ordered the servants to just stick some meat between two slices of bread for him. Since then, the modern sandwich has become one of the most popular of food formats.

According to the British Sandwich Association (BSA), the United Kingdom spends £8 billion (US$11.3 billion) annually on 11.5 billion sandwiches, with half made at home and the other half bought at shops, supermarkets, kiosks, and service stations. To better understand the environmental impact of all these sarnies, the Manchester team looked at over 40 different sandwich types, recipes, and combinations as well as how they are made, packaged, transported, and stored. In addition, they considered the waste produced in making them, as well as the stale, rotten, or simply outdated sandwiches that are thrown away.

What the researchers found was that not all sandwiches are created equal and that some varieties have larger carbon footprints than others. The highest footprint was found in premade, prepackaged, all-day-breakfast sandwiches. These contain eggs, bacon, and sausage and are kept packaged and refrigerated until sold and eaten – all of which is estimated to add up to 1,441 g (3.18 lb) of carbon dioxide equivalent, or roughly the same as driving a car for 12 miles (19 km).

[ click to continue reading at New Atlas ]

 

Posted on March 4, 2018 by Editor

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Geeks On Acid

from The Miami Herald

LSD is ‘harmonizing’ for the brain — and can change your personality for years, studies find

BY JOSH MAGNESS

Two recently released studies show how LSD can affect the brain.Two recently released studies show how LSD can affect the brain. Wikimedia Commons

Your brain on LSD is kind of like jazz improvisation.

That’s according to Selen Atasoy, a research fellow at the Center for Brain and Cognition at the Pompeu Fabra University in Spain. She was among the authors of a study published in the journal Scientific Reports that found the psychedelic drug can reorganize your brain in a “harmonizing” way.

“Just like improvising jazz musicians use many more musical notes in a spontaneous and non-random fashion,” she told PsyPost in an interview, “your brain combines many more of the harmonic waves (connectome harmonics) spontaneously yet in a structured way.”

Twelve people were examined for the study, with some taking LSD and some a placebo drug. Researchers examined their brain with an MRI scan both during and after the subjects listened to music.

[ click to continue reading at Miami Herald ]

Posted on March 3, 2018 by Editor

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Iconic Book Covers

from Entertainment Weekly

16 iconic book covers

by ERNEST MACIAS

A Million Little Pieces by James Frey

Rodrigo Corral is the creative mind behind the cover for James Frey’s novel about a recovering addict. Inspired by some cupcakes he saw at a bakery in NYC, Corral wanted to imagine how addiciton would look like running “through the human body.” The cover has become one of the most recognizable in recent years.

Get it here.

[ click to see full list at EW ]

Posted on March 2, 2018 by Editor

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Dark Age Sex

from AEON

The salacious Middle Ages

Medieval people feared death by celibacy as much as venereal disease, and practiced complex sexual health regimens

by Katherine Harvey

In the popular imagination, the history of sex is a straightforward one. For centuries, the people of the Christian West lived in a state of sexual repression, straitjacketed by an overwhelming fear of sin, combined with a complete lack of knowledge about their own bodies. Those who fell short of the high moral standards that church, state and society demanded of them faced ostracism and punishment. Then in the mid-20th century things changed forever when, in Philip Larkin’s oft-quoted words, ‘Sexual intercourse began in 1963 … between the end of the Chatterley ban and the Beatles’ first LP.’

In reality, the history of human sexuality is far more interesting and wild. Many prevailing presumptions about the sex lives of our medieval ancestors are rooted in the erroneous belief that they lived in an unsophisticated age of religious fanaticism and medical ignorance. While Christian ideals indeed influenced medieval attitudes to sex, they were rather more complex than contemporary prejudices suggest. Christian beliefs interacted with medieval medical theories to help shape some surprising and sophisticated ideas about sex, and a wide variety of different sexual practices, long before the sexual revolution.

The case of the French cleric Arnaud de Verniolle illustrates the sophistication of medieval sexuality. One day in the early 14th century, when Arnaud was a student, he had sex with a prostitute. Several years later, he confessed this lapse to the Inquisition, explaining that:

At the time they were burning the lepers, I was living in Toulouse; one day I did it with a prostitute. And after I had perpetrated this sin my face began to swell. I was terrified and thought I had caught leprosy; I thereupon swore that in future I would never sleep with a woman again.

Arnaud’s tale is not unusual. Many medieval men found themselves with undesirable symptoms after a brothel visit, and attributed their plight to their sexual behaviour. Among the various medical miracles attributed to St Thomas Becket, for example, was the cure of Odo de Beaumont, who became leprous immediately after a late-12th-century visit to a prostitute. Much has been made of the medieval tendency to interpret disease as a product of sexual sin. Too much. In fact, the medieval tendency to see disease as sexual sin was not solely based on moral judgments – there were also strong medical elements.

[ click to continue reading at AEON ]

Posted on March 1, 2018 by Editor

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E=MCwhat?

from Forbes

The Three Meanings Of E=mc^2, Einstein’s Most Famous Equation

by Ethan Siegel

The particle tracks emanating from a high energy collision at the LHC in 2014. Composite particles are broken up into their components and scattered, but new particles

For hundreds of years, there was an immutable law of physics that was never challenged: that in any reaction occurring in the Universe, mass was conserved. That no matter what you put in, what reacted, and what came out, the sum of what you began with and the sum of what you ended with would be equal. But under the laws of special relativity, mass simply couldn’t be the ultimate conserved quantity, since different observers would disagree about what the energy of a system was. Instead, Einstein was able to derive a law that we still use today, governed by one of the simplest but most powerful equations ever to be written down, E = mc2.

There are only three parts to Einstein’s most famous statement:

  1. E, or energy, which is the entirety of one side of the equation, and represents the total energy of the system.
  2. m, or mass, which is related to energy by a conversion factor.
  3. And c2, which is the speed of light squared: the right factor we need to make mass and energy equivalent.

What this equation means is thoroughly world-changing. As Einstein himself put it:

“It followed from the special theory of relativity that mass and energy are both but different manifestations of the same thing — a somewhat unfamiliar conception for the average mind.”

Here are the three biggest meanings of that simple equation.

[ click to continue reading at Forbes ]

Posted on February 28, 2018 by Editor

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The Greatest Sport Ever

Posted on February 25, 2018 by Editor

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Degas On The Bus

from The Telegraph

Stolen £700,000 Degas painting found on a bus near Paris

by Rory Mulholland

Edgar Degas was a leading Impressionist. CREDIT: HERVE LEWANDOWSKI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

French customs officers making a random check on a bus at a motorway layby found a painting by 19th century Impressionist master Edgar Degas that was stolen nine years ago from a museum in Marseille.

The 1877 painting Les Choristes, or The Chorus Singers and sometimes called  The Extras, was found in a suitcase in the vehicle’s luggage compartment during a stopover in Marne-la-Vallée to the east of Paris.

Its value is estimated at €800,000 (£700,000).

But when the officers asked passengers who the case belonged to, they were met with a stony silence, the culture ministry said in a statement.

“Its disappearance represented a heavy loss to the French impressionist heritage,” said Culture Minister Françoise Nyssen, who issued a statement saying she was delighted at “the happy rediscovery of a precious work.”

[ click to continue reading at The Telegraph ]

Posted on February 23, 2018 by Editor

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