Amazon Deals

New at Amazon

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Ave atque vale, Adam West - here's the Batman opening sequence and some fight scenes (Bap!)

This Batman TV series opening theme music is totally stuck in my head now:

For a little trip dow memory lane, if you're old enough, here are fight scenes from the 1966 season of Batman (Parts 1 and 2). Those of you too young to remember will probably enjoy them, too:

Related: Here's a 1983 episode of The Family Feud with the cast of Gilligan's Island vs the cast of Batman

Friday, June 9, 2017

Famous Works Of Art Recreated Using Marvel Action Figures

Some impressive photography:

The Creation of Adam, Michelangelo (Sistine Chapel, Vatican City), 1508–1512

Vitruvian Man, Leonardo Da Vinci 1490, Italy

The Discobolus of Myron (Circa 460-450 B.C.)

The Last Supper, Leonardo Da Vinci, Circa 1495-1497

Perseus with the Head of Medusa, Benvenuto Cellini, 1545

The Thinker (Le Penseur), Auguste Rodin, 1880

Pietà, Michelangelo (Basilica di San Pietro, Vaticano), 1498-1499

Friday links

What it Takes to Cook Some of Literature's Most Famous Meals.

Stunning Photos of Earth from the International Space Station.

The Wartime Spies Who Used Knitting as an Espionage Tool.

ICYMI, Thursday's links are here, and include the cut-throat world of toddler bike racing, early gas station architecture, tequila as a weight loss tool, food photography tricks, and 17th century methods for killing snakes and fleas. 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Thursday links

How to Kill Snakes and Fleas: advice from 1688.

These food photography tricks are kinda fascinating.

Inside the Cut-Throat World of Toddler Bike Racing.

Diet tip of the day: Drinking tequila can lead to weight loss. Among other things.

ICYMI, Tuesday's links are here, and include using a a charge card for a $170 million painting, pasta shape ranking, D-Day links, artificial skating rinks before reliable ice-making technology, and foolproof pick up lines (according to Chinese scientists).

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

These food photography tricks are kinda fascinating

Commercial food photographers use all kinds of non-edible products to cleverly make food look delicious in front of a lens. I've known that they did this, but never knew the details. 

This Guardian article discusses additional tricks.

How Falconry Shaped the English Language

Feeling hoodwinked or fed up? During the 16th century, an amateur falconer and playwright named William Shakespeare loved training birds of prey so much that he began adding falconry references to his plays.

Related: From 32 starlings in the 1890s to 200 million now: The Shakespeare Fanatic Who Introduced the Bard’s Birds to America

Further reading:


How To Be Miserable

Seven things that are scientifically known to maximize misery.

Tuesday links

"Your smile is a naughty goblin": Foolproof pick up lines, per Chinese scientists

How do Animals Have Sex Underwater?

June 6, is D-Day: quotes (Shakespeare, Eisenhower, Churchill), videos (footage, FDR's and Reagan's speeches, a Lego re-enactment), lots of links.

The First Artificial Skating Rinks Looked Pretty But Smelled Terrible - before the technology to reliably freeze water existed, the rinks used a mixture of pig fat and salts.

ICYMI, Friday's links are here, and include how America's self-esteem craze took hold, some 17th century advice on encrypting and sending secret messages, TV characters killed off out of spite, and the anniversary of the evacuation of Dunkirk by a flotilla of small boats (the inspiration for Churchill's "We shall fight on the beaches...we shall never surrender" speech).

Sunday, June 4, 2017

"Your smile is a naughty goblin": Foolproof pick up lines, per Chinese scientists

Likewise, the researchers said that men should approach women and say “your roof is a lover’s shoulder” or “your garden is the sea of flowers” rather than sticking to a more prosaic phrase like “your door is very strong.”
Scientists at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China have published a new study called “Women prefer men who use metaphorical language when paying compliments in a romantic context” which suggests that poetic language is the way to a ladies’ heart.

It suggested lines like “Your smile is a naughty goblin” were likely to be more enticing than straightforward compliments like “your lips are so sexy.”

Likewise, the researchers said that men should approach women and say “your roof is a lover’s shoulder” or “your garden is the sea of flowers” rather than sticking to a more prosaic phrase like “your door is very strong.” Per the study:
The findings confirm our hypotheses that in a courtship situation where compliments serve as a sexual display of mate quality, women show a preference for metaphors, particularly novel ones, in verbal structure.
The preference seemed even more pronounced when the women were fertile:
We investigated 124 female students’ preference for compliments paid by males incorporating either literal or metaphoric (conventional/novel) language and targeting their appearance or possessions (house) throughout their menstrual cycle. Male faces paired with novel metaphorical compliments were rated as more attractive by women than those paired with literal ones. Compliments targeting appearance increased male attractiveness more than possessions. Interestingly, compliments on appearance using novel metaphors were preferred by women in a relationship during the fertile phase but by single women during the luteal phase. 
The study was published in Nature, and is available online here. They seem to draw a tenuous conclusion that novel metaphorical language indicates higher intelligence, which would indicate better mating potential. What the hell, I like a good metaphor myself.

Translation errors are not uncommon.
I realize, of course, that there may be some mistranslations among these otherwise extremely spiffy pick-up lines - it happens on occasion:

And this, not a translation fail but one of my favorite Chinese things: This Chinese music video is the weirdest thing you'll watch all day

More on the pick-up line story at Daily Mail

This discussion reminded me of a contest a few years ago (WaPo-sponsored, I think) wherein respondents were asked to produce pick-up lines that only Washington, D.C.-area residents would understand. The winner was "Your beauty renders me as powerless as D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton." Don't get it? That's because you don't live in D.C., but there's a cursory explanation here.