(That was the BoingBoing headline for this; it’s actually a remote-controlled toy helicopter, but that doesn’t sound as funny.)
“Corporate Comedian” and prankster Tom Mabe uses a flying Grim Reaper to swoop down on unsuspecting passersby and scare the everliving hell out of them. It’s the sort of thing that’s hilarious happening to somebody else and would definitely make you want to punch the perpetrator if it happened to you.
Just throwing this out here because it’s a cool idea and I don’t know what else to do with it:
Last year webcomic artist Kate Leth (site NSFW) threw a party with the theme of “Elseworlds: Come As Yourself From A Different Timeline.”
Elseworlds is an imprint of DC Comics which presents stories that take place outside of canon, placing existing characters in alternate realities or imaginary stories which don’t impact the “real” continuity; one example is Gotham by Gaslight, which featured a Victorian-era Batman fighting Jack the Ripper.
The party idea is sort of brilliant, and so many things could be done with it. I love the idea of, instead of coming as somebody else, you come as yourself…who happens to be somebody else. There are a zillion science fiction stories which explore what the world would be like if major historical events had worked out differently: What if Hitler hadn’t gone into politics (The Iron Dream)? What if the South had won the American Civil War (Bring the Jubilee)? And so on. This party would instead focus on what might have happened in your own personal timeline if things had worked out differently.
The changes could be major (What if the Axis had won WWII?) or minor (What if you’d chosen a different major in college?) but in either case you’d want to think about how those things would have impacted you personally and what that “other” you would be like. You certainly don’t have to confine yourself to current reality; you could also consider what things would be like if witchcraft really worked or if we’d recently made first contact with aliens.
Depending upon how you wanted to theme the party, you could either ask your guests to choose whatever alternate reality they wanted and then explain who their alternate self is, or give them the parameters of your other timeline (“We live in a world where vampires really exist,” or “Columbus was lost at sea, the empires in South America flourished, and eventually their sailors discovered Europe”) and ask them to come as whoever they think they would be in those different circumstances.
A “Come As You Aren’t” party is a refreshing change from standard costume parties, and the theme possibilities are limitless. This will definitely be on my shortlist of party ideas.
I’m not sure what you’d call this, but it’d be a hell of a light fixture.
I saw it online, unattributed, and finally tracked the original photo down to Something Created Every Day: It was a display created by Tim Holtz for his booth at the Craft & Hobby Association trade show:
Tim said that his neighbor painted the hands, the lights are from Ikea and either the bulbs are special or the glass is colored (I don’t remember exactly how he described this). Either way, this display was fantastic.
I’m assuming that the hands are probably mannequin hands. I don’t see that particular style of light at Ikea’s site, but they’re also called cage lights. Searching for “industrial hanging light” or “workshop cage light” turns up loads of styles to choose from; I thought this and this were pretty.
The hands are mounted on simple wooden plaques, easy to find in many shapes and sizes at craft and hardware stores. The frame is just a big, rather banged-up picture frame.
This project is certainly DIY-able and would be a really interesting lighting treatment for a room. I assume that since this was done as a temporary decoration the lamp cords are simply hanging loose and plugged in near the floor. For a more permanent fixture you could fasten them all together with cable ties for a slightly less messy appearance.
You could also do individual hands, each with its own frame, for a different take on the same idea.
This 1987 film was originally supposed to be titled The Hellbound Heart, after the novella it was based upon. When the studio decided that sounded too much like a romance, the author suggested Sadomasochists from Beyond the Grave. They didn’t like that either. What was the movie ultimately called?
This work, subtitled Prince Galehaut, is a collection of tales supposedly told by a group of people sheltering from the Black Plague.
A) Book of Taliesin
B) The Canterbury Tales
D) Tales of Count Lucanor
E) The Decameron
This “last child of Ungoliant to trouble the unhappy world” was a gigantic spider who attacked Frodo Baggins before being repelled by Sam.
The Hogwarts Flying instructor is Madam _____.
This band, founded by Sean Brennan, takes its name from a seminal 1927 horror movie starring Lon Chaney.
Although Psycho author Robert Bloch denies deliberately basing Norman Bates on this real-life killer, he has remarked upon being surprised how closely “the imaginary character I’d created resembled the real [person] both in overt act and apparent motivation.” Who was it?
A) David Berkowitz
B) Ted Bundy
C) Dean Corll
D) Ed Gein
E) Peter Sutcliffe
The video game Portal involves navigating puzzles whilst being “aided” and later menaced by an AI named what?
Which of these is not one of the Pagan Sabbats?
In Homer’s Odyssey, the ship finds itself menaced between a horrible monster named Scylla and a whirlpool named this.
In the movie Alien the (rather unhelpful) ship’s computer is called what?
Call of Catthulhu – RPG with the premise that cats are the only ones saving the Universe from the evil of Things From Beyond Space.
New “Giger Bar” May Open – I had no idea that these even existed: H.R. Giger designed the “biomechanical” interiors for two bars in Switzerland and one in Japan. A new one may soon be opening in the U.S.
The Victorian Period – Fun Web-based game which tests the suitability of your Victorian manners. See whether you’d know how to behave in various situations; choose wrong, and there are consequences. Involving ninjas. (Hat tip to Sisifo)
Rats with Teddy Bears – If this series of photos doesn’t make you fall down dead from the cute, I don’t want to be your friend. (Hat tip to WitchArachne)
The British Library has released over a million images onto Flickr Commons, free for any use. They’re hoping to crowdsource the image descriptions, making them easier to search, and are asking for help.
We have released over a million images onto Flickr Commons for anyone to use, remix and repurpose. These images were taken from the pages of 17th, 18th and 19th century books digitised by Microsoft who then generously gifted the scanned images to us, allowing us to release them back into the Public Domain. The images themselves cover a startling mix of subjects: There are maps, geological diagrams, beautiful illustrations, comical satire, illuminated and decorative letters, colourful illustrations, landscapes, wall-paintings and so much more that even we are not aware of.
Which brings me to the point of this release. We are looking for new, inventive ways to navigate, find and display these ‘unseen illustrations’. The images were plucked from the pages as part of the ‘Mechanical Curator’, a creation of the British Library Labs project. Each image is individually addressible, online, and Flickr provides an API to access it and the image’s associated description.
The full photosteam is here. This is an amazing resource for all sorts of art projects. There are vintage zoological woodcuts and illustrations from fairy tales and religious memento mori and loads and loads (indeed, more than a million) other interesting images. You can volunteer to help tag and describe them, or just raid the repository for your own use. Great stuff.
Mieljolie of All Things Crafty likes to do steampunk cosplay, and she got to thinking that it would be nice to not have to tote beverage containers that detracted from her costume. Thus was born the Bustle Bar, a “rum-dispensing bum” which puts her beverages where her bustle should be.
Her initial design concealed everything but the pump, but in the spirit of steampunk she rejiggered all of the working parts to be exposed on a custom leather belt. The rig holds three 1.75-liter tanks which are dispensed via a trigger on her hip. It’s a gorgeous unit, and although she doesn’t include exact build directions, there are good photos to use as a jumping-off point.
She also discusses the costume she wears with the bustle, and describes how it all goes together. It’s really a great idea.
Be sure to check out the rest of her blog as well; there’s not only a wealth of other steampunk tutorials, she does awesome Witch BOO’ts and other cool stuff.
Trystan (of Gothic Martha Stewart fame) is a costumer of some note, and has a brilliant idea for an offbeat vacation: Get together with a group of friends, rent a historical home, and dress in period costume for a couple of weeks. So far she’s done Blo Norton in the U.K., Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia, and Chateau de Pys in France.
She stresses that these trips do not require enormous amounts of money and time to accomplish, so they’re within the realm of possibility for us normal folks. She’s written a how-to guide for planning a similar vacation (it was done for the online costuming magazine “Your Wardrobe Unlock’d” and requires a subscription to read, but access is only $5.97 for the first month and the back issues should make that cost worthwhile).
There’s also a documentary about the Blo Norton trip, available on DVD. Here’s a trailer:
If you’re a history or costuming buff, this would be a fascinating way to engage in a little faux time travel with like-minded friends. You could content yourself with dressing the part or go even further and try to live the period: Cooking from historical recipes, using only candles or oil lamps for light, and so forth. (I’d recommend drawing the line at the use of chamber pots.)