Convicted cannibals re-arrested for… er… cannibalism
07:50 am

Current Events


A man has been arrested in Pakistan’s Punjab province on suspicion of cannibalising a young girl. Mohammad Arif Ali was arrested after neighbors complained about the smell of rotting flesh coming from his house.

Arif Ali and his brother, Mohammad Farman Ali, were jailed two years ago after they were found to have disinterred and devoured up to 150 corpses over ten years from a local graveyard. It is said the brothers used body parts to make curry. As there are no laws against cannibalism in Pakistan, the pair were sent to jail for desecration of graves, and fined Rs50,000.

The brothers spent most of their time in prison at the King Edward Medical University in Lahore, where they were examined by doctors at the neurophysiology department.

After their release from jail, the siblings maintained a very low profile. However, after complaints about an overpowering stench coming from the brothers’ house, local police raided the premises where the discovered the skull of a child. The police then arrested one of the brothers, Arif Ali, and are now searching for the other brother, Farman Ali.

Proof that short prison sentences don’t work…?

Cannibalism can be dated as far back as the Lower and Middle Paleolithic, where it is believed to have taken place during times of famine or for possible rituals. More recently, cannibalism has been documented during the Russian famine of the 1920s, and during the Second World War at the siege of Stalingrad. It has also been reported in the 1960s and 1970s in Cambodia, and famously after the 1972, Andes flight disaster, when survivors cannibalised other dead passengers to stay alive. There have also been several notorious serial killers who cannibalised their victms including Jeffrey Dahmer and Andrei Chikatilo (who killed and ate a minimum of 52 women and children between 1976 and 1990) being perhaps the best known.

Below the original news report on the arrest of the two brothers form 2011:

Via The Independent

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Bruce Lee talks martial arts during his 1964 audition for ‘The Green Hornet’
07:36 am


Bruce Lee

In this 1964 tape, a confident Bruce Lee gives a kung fu primer while auditioning for the role of Kato in The Green Hornet. Lee, of course, got the part, and though the show only ran for a year, Kato, the ass-kicking man-servant was a ground-breaking, if complicated, moment in television history. By this time Lee had already built a successful film career in Hong Kong—though he was born Chinatown, San Francisco, his parents moved to Hong Kong when he was three. Lee’s Cantonese birth name was actually Lee Jun-fan, meaning “return again,” named for his (half-white) mother’s prediction that he would one day come back to the US.

The martial arts demos are cool, but for me, one of the more interesting moments is when Lee show some of the gaits of Chinese Opera—his own father was a Chinese opera and film star. In addition to the fighting skills that earned him the (unofficial) title of America’s first male Asian sex symbol, Lee was a man of many graceful talents—he was even the 1958 Honk Kong Cha Cha Champion!

Via Open Culture, H/T Brain Pickings

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Famous composers doing normal shit
07:25 am


John Cage
Gustav Mahler
Aaron Copland

Whether it’s Aaron Copland raking the leaves in the yard, John Cage picking mushrooms, or Prokofiev playing chess, these photographs show famous composers in their everyday life doing normal everyday shit.
Claude Debussy having a picnic with his daughter.
Sergei Rachmaninoff flies a kite with friends.
Sergei Prokofiev plays chess with violinist David Oistrakh, while another violinist, Liza Gilels watches on.
Caroline Shaw kayaking on the Hudson River.
John Cage picking mushrooms.
Via Composers doing normal shit
More composers doing normal shit, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Talking chicken causes mass panic
07:17 am


Talking chicken

A chicken is claimed to have caused mass panic amongst the residents of Makurdi, in Nigeria’s capital of Benue last Thursday when it suddenly started speaking. The chicken was being taken to market when it allegedly began speaking in fluent Arabic. The incident happened around twelve noon outside of the Wadata central mosque. As a large crowd gathered, the talking chicken was taken into custody at “A” Division police headquarters, nearby the mosque. There was considerable confusion as some people, on foot and in cars, tried to get away from the scene, while others moved towards it.

One eye-witness, a women called Aishetu, told the Nigeria Daily News:

“I heard that police have taken it into custody and that is why the station is so crowded. Everybody wants to see it talk.”

As panic over the talking bird spread, tensions grew between herdsmen and farmers, who have have been in a violent and bloody dispute. Last month, Muslim herdsmen killed hundreds of Christian farmers in Nigeria’s volatile “middle area,” which is a far more disturbing story than any communicative chanticleer.

Police attempted to disperse the crowds by firing shots and throwing tear gas canisters.

Police spokesman, SP. Daniel Ezeala dismissed the claims of a talking chicken by saying:

“How can a fowl talk’” he queried. “There is nothing like that because it is unnatural for animals to talk. It is the handiwork of mischief makers who wanted to displace traders and loot their wares in the market.”

This is not the first time a “talkin"g animal has caused panic, previously a talking fish terrified fishermen by announcing the end of the world was coming. The talking chicken was allegedly slaughtered. It is not known if the poor bird had any final requests…ahem.

H/T Tommy Udo

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
‘Bay City Rollers We Love You’: Nick Lowe’s secret musical love letter
07:09 am


Nick Lowe

Tartan Horde
According to Nick Lowe, the first musical release he did “all by myself” was a bizarrely enthusiastic fan club-style ditty written in mock adulation of one of the dominant pop sensations of 1975, the Scottish quintet known as the Bay City Rollers. The same song was also the catalyst from his sorely desired move from United Artists to Stiff Records, the independent label that did so much to define a certain brand of brainy pop in the early punk era, including, in addition to Lowe, Elvis Costello, The Damned, and Ian Dury.
Tartan Horde
“Bay City Rollers We Love You,” by the ad-hoc (and fictional) outfit “Tartan Horde,” in addition to being a damn fine pop ditty (I’ve included it on plenty of mixes over the years), is one of the more intriguing products of the continual strife between pop artists and record executives, an honorable lineage that includes Prince scrawling “Slave” on his cheek, Neil Young’s Landing on Water, the Sex Pistols’ “EMI,” and Graham Parker’s “Mercury Poisoning.”  (It might not be a coincidence that two of the examples named here emerged in the the UK of the late 1970s, the same general record label petri dish that Lowe was working in.)
The Bay City Rollers
The Bay City Rollers
Here’s an account of the single’s creation, drawn from Punk Diary: The Ultimate Trainspotter’s Guide to Underground Rock, 1970-1982 by George Gimarc:

Back in 1975, when Brinsley Schwartz split, United Artists were quite keen on keeping Nick Lowe under contract. He had written the songs, he was the “valuable one.” He desperately wanted out of the contract so he could pursue his own things and puzzled about how to do it he decided to submit some really bad records to UA. Lowe recalled “I couldn’t be obvious about it by turning in Country & Western songs with sitars [not a bad idea!] … so I decided to make one of those fan type records like in the ‘60s …. at the time there was no escaping the Bay City Rollers they were everywhere! So I wrote this stupid little song. … I recorded it and it was actually the very first thing I’d done all by myself.

The song was written pseudonymously, under the slightly hilarious name “Terry Modern.” I haven’t been able to track down the personnel on the song, but that sure is Rat Scabies of The Damned in that picture up top. The Internet contains several references to the song “topping the charts” in Japan, but I haven’t seen details. Here’s the Japanese cover art, which is very Peter Max influenced:
Tartan Horde

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Invoking blackface, conservative idiot whines that Stephen Colbert is racist towards conservatives!

I seldom write about political matters anymore on DM because there’s an assumption that if you hate Republicans then you must automatically be a Democrat and I got tired of offering the disclaimer that the only reason I would ever vote for a Democrat is to keep the Republican out of office. Not only that, once-reliable traffic-generators like “Glenn Beck says something OFF THE WALL (again)” or “Sarah Palin says something IDIOTIC (again)” don’t really bring in that much traffic anymore. Republicans are fucking idiots. If they weren’t, then they wouldn’t be Republicans. Most people who read this blog probably don’t need anyone, including me, explaining that to them. I prefer to ignore them.

Today, though, I’m making an exception for the #1 dumbest rightwing reaction to Stephen Colbert taking over for David Letterman. This is just too good.

Young Ben Shapiro was once the wimpy “boy wonder” to Andrew Breitbart’s blob-shaped crusader and he usually makes about as much sense as his blustery late mentor, except that no one takes him nearly as seriously. Lil’ Ben is now the editor of a silly blog called Truth Revolt that no one reads except for lefty bloggers who want to mock him. He’s written a new book called How to Debate Leftists and Destroy Them and he’s proud of the fact that he was still a virgin on his wedding day.

Shapiro possesses pretty much the most punchable face I think I’ve ever seen. He fills me with visceral hatred. Which is kind of funny because in his latest Truth Revolt “think piece” Shapiro makes an inadvertently hilarious argument for the comedic genius, not to mention vital cultural importance of Stephen Colbert by complaining that:

“It is nearly impossible to watch an episode of The Colbert Report without coming away with a viscerally negative response to conservatives.”

Sharply observed, fuckwit! Give that man a Kewpie Doll…

But in the wake of all the conservative hand-wringing about Colbert replacing Letterman (Rush Limbaugh said that CBS was declaring “war” on the heartland with this pick) Babyface Ben sees something far more sinister going on:  Colbert IS a racist! He’s a racist against conservatives!

Blackface, which has an ugly history dating back to at least the fifteenth century according to historian John Strausbaugh, was used to portray demeaning and horrifying stereotypes of blacks. Such stereotypical imitation has not been limited to blacks, of course; actors tasked with playing stereotypical Jew Shylock often donned a fake nose and red wig, as did actors who were supposed to play Barabas in The Jew of Malta. Such stereotypical potrayals [sic] create a false sense of blacks, or Jews, or whomever becomes the target of such nastiness.

And this is precisely what Colbert does with regard to politics: he engages in Conservativeface. He needs no makeup or bulbous appendage to play a conservative – after all, conservatives come in every shape and size. Instead, he acts as though he is a conservative – an idiotic, racist, sexist, bigoted, brutal conservative. He out-Archie Bunkers Archie Bunker. His audience laughs and scoffs at brutal religious “Colbert” who wishes to persecute gays; they chortle at evil sexist “Colbert” who thinks men are victims of sexism. This is the purpose of Colbert’s routine. His show is about pure hatred for conservatives in the same way that blackface was about pure hatred of blacks. In order to justify their racism, racists had to create a false perception of blacks; in the same way, Colbert and his audience can justify their racism only by creating a false perception of conservatives.

No, no Ben, you’re confused. Colbert gives a very, very, very accurate portrayal of conservatives. Didn’t you just write:

“It is nearly impossible to watch an episode of The Colbert Report without coming away with a viscerally negative response to conservatives.”

It’s because conservatives are assholes, Ben. Like you. Someone who doesn’t get the fucking joke..

The comments below Shapiro’s logic-addled rant are as delicious as you might expect:

The only thing this article accomplished is making me think that I might not be too sad if society as a whole started systematically disenfranchising and dehumanizing conservatives. After all, if this guy is that attached to the blackface metaphor he should at least get to experience it for real firsthand.

Here’s another:

Is this an article or a rationalization? Sounds like more right wing sour grapes to me. Colbert’s character is successful because it is such a dead-on satire. You can listen to Rush and Fox News and conclude that Colbert is misrepresenting them as somehow worse, or more extreme than they really are? Laughable. Go re-examine your life. You’re on the wrong side.

Tee-hee. Expecting self-awareness from the likes of lil’ Ben seems a tad far-fetched, though.

Oh, brother. There’s this thing called satire and it always exagerrates its subject. That’s how it works. Minstrel shows weren’t satire. They were mockery and cultural appropriation. Is Mr Shapiro claiming that people are born conservative and Mr Colbert is stereotyping the entire conservative “race?”



What about?

it’s almost as if you’re providing the source material for him to be successful…oh wait, you have

Here’s another good one:

You just compared the schtick of a comedian on a comedy network to the institutional and societal approved degradation of a entire race of people. Which in addition to being monumentally stupid is also precisely why folks like Colbert mock conservatives, your feigned attempts at equivocating always shines a light on the underbelly of your magnificent ignorance.

Not sure if Ben Shapiro and Truth Revolt are important enough targets for Colbert and his writers to take notice of—some attention from him is what Shapiro seems to be aiming for with this insipid drivel—but it would be amusing to hear their take on how the author of How to Debate Leftists and Destroy Them scored such a humiliating own goal.

Meanwhile, Colbert did what he does best on last night’s program, totally pwning “Papa Bear”:


Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
*Brilliant* blaxploitation ‘Mad Men’ parody: ‘Don-O-Mite’
11:38 am


Mad Men

If this was a real AMC TV show, I’d watch the shit out of it!!! It plays like Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song meets Putney Swope, written by Rudy Ray Moore and directed by Melvin Van Peebles.

The character “Black Peggy” as a Pam Grier meets Angela Davis-type won my heart! Brilliant.

An ad agency—naturally—Leroy & Clarkson created this entertaining piece.



Via Laughing Squid

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Nailed it!: Fashions of the future as imagined in 1893



Here are some amusing illustrations of what fashion might’ve looked like “in the future” according to W. Cade Gall from the January 1893 issue of The Strand magazine.

Oddly, the fashion styles really don’t evolve much from decade to decade. The change is nearly nonexistent. Everyone seems stuck in a Wizard of Oz meets Hieronymus Bosch mode throughout the 20th century.

Personally, I think fashion has gone tits-up since the late 80s. I studied fashion design and today the topic just bores me to tears. There’s nothing “new” anymore. I get that fashion trends usually just recycle old designs from yesteryear and add a “new” spin on ‘em, but honestly, recycling 90s fashion in the year 2014 is not very interesting. Neo-grunge??? Gimme a break! It was boring then, and it’s boring now. I’d far prefer to see W. Cade Gall’s idea of what the fashionistas of 1993 would be wearing on the streets of LA or NYC in 2014, now that would be interesting. Perhaps slightly uncomfortable and a bit stifling, but interesting nonetheless…
























Via Public Domain Review and h/t WFMU

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
A history of the Devil
07:55 am



The Devil first appeared in early Christian iconography as a blue angel assisting Jesus on judgment day separating the goats from the sheep, as described the gospel according to Matthew (25, 31-33):

When the Son of Man shall come in his glory and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory; And before him shall be gathered all nations; and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats; And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.

A 6th century mosaic of the last judgement in Ravenna, in the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo, Italy, clearly shows Jesus flanked on the right by an angel of light, in red; and on the left by an angel of dark, in blue. This is the Devil, who was seen in early medieval times as little more than a low-ranking bureaucrat, who was working for God.

Gradually, as the Catholic/Christian religion extended its power, the Devil began to take on a more sinister form. The blue angel sprouted horns, and slightly resembled a dragon. Interestingly, Hell at this time was not yet the fiery furnace it is depicted as today, the river of flames would be first painted with the last judgment mural at Torcello Cathedral in Venice, produced during the 11th century

The Devil slowly changed color to red, and took on elements from other mythical gods and creatures: firstly Hades, the Greek god of the underworld, and then another Greek god Pan, who was originally the god of shepherd. (His name meant “to pasture.”) It was Pan who gave the Devil his goat’s legs and cloven hooves. Our vision of the Christian Devil owes more to artists than it does to any descriptive verse in the Bible.

By the 1600s, this horned red Devil was used as a means to oppress and enforce the rule of the Catholic/Christian church. Anyone who spoke out against the church was a heretic and in league with the Devil. For if the church was God on earth, then those against the church were on the Devil’s side. This led to the brutal and horrific slaughter of thousands of innocent people.

Today, the Devil is still used to oppress and inspire fear. Most recently, the American government, under President George W. Bush, declared war on an “Axis of Evil,” while at the head of the US military were men who literally believed they were waging war on the Devil.

This documentary examines the creation of the Devil from mythical gods to source of terrorism and fear.


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Dead Zeppelin: Hindenburg disaster coverage was as tacky as today’s never-ending Flight 370 ‘news’
07:41 am



Everyone always forgets what the backend looked like, but what did you expect? It was a Nazi airship!
Lately, it almost feels like public disgust with cable TV news coverage has reached some sort of critical mass—I can literally think of no one who didn’t find coverage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 idiotically sensationalized (the anchors probably feel that way, too, because, hey, this bullshit is coming out of their smiling faces all day). And while Fox News certainly went predictably batshit crazy with irresponsible insinuations of Islamic terrorism, it wasn’t just the right-wingers who went crackers. CNN’s Don Lemon went all Twilight Zone—literally, he name-dropped The Twilight Zone—floating theories of black holes and supernatural forces by a panel of adult human beings, on national television, as if it were a totally appropriate thing for a news show to speculate about. This entire charade has the public left wondering, “When is the the real news coming back on?”

But weep not for the long-gone days of American journalistic dignity, dear reader, because that era has never existed! If you’re under the impression that tragic disasters used to be held in a respectable reverence in this country, please refer to the vintage bit of newstainment below, a 1937 Universal Studios newsreel on the Hindenburg explosion. From the Hollywood sturm und drang musical accompaniment to the announcer (who feels freshly picked from a radio soap opera) this little five-minute news reel is pure spectacle There’s an explosion sound effect, studio-recorded screams and a police siren added, apparently to “recreate” the story. It’s at least as vulgar as anything on cable news today, and they didn’t even have the benefit of CNN’s holograms!

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
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