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Plastic Surgery Disaster: Powerful animation about trying to obtain ‘female perfection’
09.12.2014
08:39 am

Topics:
Animation
Current Events
Hysteria

Tags:
plastic surgery


 
This disturbing, powerful and eye-opening animation, “Supervenus” by Frédéric Doazan doesn’t mince… meat with getting its message across, does it?

In it, a female anatomical drawing goes for plastic surgery. She is cut up, given botox and liposuction, and is finally transformed into a blonde bombshell. The procedures do not stop there, however, and take on nightmarish proportions.

This animation is painful to watch—it documents the pressure that women face as they feel like they have to look a certain way, as well as their love-hate relationship with their bodies.

Living in Los Angeles this is something you’re faced with every single day in the most mundane places. Supermarkets, the car wash. There’s a Jocelyn Wildenstein in every yoga class in town. The only minor quibble I have with the piece is that’s is not just women who are feeling the pressures of “unattainable beauty”—due to all the photoshop nonsense in magazines—but men are too. I mean, look (try not to gawk) at Bruce Jenner, Mickey Rourke, Sylvester Stallone and so forth. Clearly they’ve also been “infected” with the body dysmorphic virus.
 

 
Thank you Alice Lowe, of London, England!

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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Man had moth buzzing inside his head for three days
08.25.2014
08:31 am

Topics:
Current Events

Tags:
insects
moths

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Like the gastropod that crawled into a victim’s brain in Shaun Hutson’s Slugs, or the carnivorous insects invading human orifices in Guy N. Smith’s Abomination, this is a tale worthy of a horror story: man has live moth removed from ear which had been buzzing inside his head for three fucking days!

This nightmare began for Rob Fielding, 43, of Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire, England, when a moth perched on his ear while he was reading in bed one night at home. Instinctively he reached up to poke it away but ended up pushing the insect into his ear canal. 

After three restless days, his wife suggested he went to hospital for an examination. The insect was eventually removed during a 90-minute operation where his ear canal was prised open and the moth pulled out with a tiny pair of forceps. Mr Fielding told ITV News:

It was awful knowing the moth was flying around inside my head and every now and then when I felt it move, it made me jump out of my skin.

 
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He now displays the dead insect on his mantlepiece as a souvenir of the ordeal.

Alas no video for this story, but here’s one that was removed earlier…(success around 2:50).
 

 
H/T Arbroath

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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Murder suspect asked Siri how to hide a body; Siri gave him some answers!
08.13.2014
01:49 pm

Topics:
Current Events
Science/Tech

Tags:
Siri


 
I haven’t been following this case or know much about it, but a few years ago a teenager Pedro Bravo allegedly strangled and killed a young man—formerly a friend of his—named Christian Aguilar, a University of Florida student, in a Wal-mart parking lot. Bravo was convinced Aguliar was dating his old high school girlfriend and became so overcome with jealousy and anger, killing Aguliar and burying him in a nearby forest.

According to reports, Bravo allegedly asked Siri, “I need to hide my roommate.”

What’s creepy as hell is Siri actually responded with, “What kind of place are you looking for?” Siri then suggested the following: “Swamps. Reservoirs. Metal foundries. Dumps.”
 

 
Dumbfounding, isn’t it? HOW would Siri seemingly understand the nuance present in this situation?

You can read more about the case here and here.

Update: There appears to be some discrepancy with what actually happened. Watch the video below:

 
via Death and Taxes

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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Russian teenagers build ‘swimming’ pool in living room
08.02.2014
09:57 am

Topics:
Amusing
Current Events

Tags:
teenagers
swimming pools

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Two enterprising teenagers have found a novel answer to Moscow’s current heatwave by turning a living room into their very own mini indoor pool. The big question is, whose front room have they used?

Photos appeared on social networks of the two nameless lads bathing in their DIY paddling pool. According to the Moscow Times, the pool was constructed “using a basic tarpaulin and held in place by Scotch tape”.

The boys, who hail from the Oryol region about 350 kilometers southwest of Moscow, where temperatures rose above 30 C this week according to the weather bureau, were seemingly oblivious to their unconventional setting as they posed for pool snaps amongst a radiator, some curtains and a chandelier.

It was not immediately clear how the boys planned to drain the water from their living room pool, nor whether the homeowner had consented to the bath’s construction.

You just know this isn’t going to end well for someone…
 
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Via Moscow Times

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’: Spill of poppies commemorate fallen of First World War
08.01.2014
01:29 pm

Topics:
Current Events

Tags:
poetry
Wilfred Owen
World War I

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To commemorate the centennial of Britain’s involvement in the First World War, artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper have produced a “staggering” installation of red ceramic poppies in the dry moat of the Tower of London.

The installation is titled “Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red” and once finished will consist of 888,246 red ceramic poppies—each one representing a British or Colonial fatality during the Great War. The red poppy is the British symbol for Remembrance Day, when the nation give homage to the war dead. Volunteers will plant ceramic flowers each day until November 11th—the day of remembrance.

Remembrance is one thing, but humanity never seems to learn from the experiences of past wars—as can be seen by current events in Gaza. If there is any real sincerity in honoring those who sacrificed their lives, then it is in the cessation of all conflict. But sadly I doubt we are ever going to see that anytime soon.

It would also have been an idea to remember not just the British and Colonial fallen, but all of the (estimated) 37 million casualties (16 million dead and over 20 million wounded) in this horrendous conflict.

The poet Wilfred Owen (1893 - 1918) was a hero, soldier and poet, who best summed up the horror of war with his poem “Dulce et Decorum Est,” which strikes as hard now as it did when first published in 1920.

Dulce et Decorum Est

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

Gas! Gas! Quick, boys!—An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime…
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,—
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori
.

The phrase “Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori” means “How sweet and honourable it is to die for one’s country,” and is taken from a poem by the Roman poet Horace. It was used to encourage the young into the belief it was good to die for one’s country, or fatherland. This “old lie” is still in use today.
 
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More after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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‘Boomerang Kids’: Images of college graduates with huge debts who live with their parents
07.29.2014
11:42 am

Topics:
Current Events
Economy

Tags:
debt crisis


Annie Kasinecz, 27, Downers Grove, Ill.
Degree: B.A., Advertising and public relations, Loyola University, Chicago
Student Loans: $75,000

Los Angeles-based photographer Damon Casarez‘s series titled “Boomerang Kids” portrays the bleak reality that 1 in 5 Americans in their 20s and early 30s live at home with their parents. According to the New York Times, “60 percent of all young adults receive financial support from them.” That’s staggering, isn’t? Of course there are a plethora reasons why Millennials are still at home with mom and dad, but the main reason is… crushing student debt loans.

In effect, children move out, go through the standard rite of passage of American life—getting a highly valued “higher education”—and then end up dependent on their parents again (if there was ever a break in the first place) a day or two after graduation because there are no decent paying jobs anymore.

Saddling themselves up to their eyeballs in student loan debts—whether they attended classes or attended to their hangovers—that they will then be paying off to Wall Street capitalists for much, perhaps most, of their productive lives seems like a raw deal. Who benefits from this equation? It’s becoming more and more obvious every day what a scam colleges are.

In the case of Damon Casarez, he was in the very same situation that his subjects are in—lots of debt and living at home—and “Boomerang Kids” was a way of connecting with young people in similar financial straights, an entire generation with a “failure to launch” crisis not of their own making.

Here’s a bit more from the New York Times:

The common explanation for the shift is that people born in the late 1980s and early 1990s came of age amid several unfortunate and overlapping economic trends. Those who graduated college as the housing market and financial system were imploding faced the highest debt burden of any graduating class in history. Nearly 45 percent of 25-year-olds, for instance, have outstanding loans, with an average debt above $20,000. And more than half of recent college graduates are unemployed or underemployed, meaning they make substandard wages in jobs that don’t require a college degree.

snip~

For most of American history, it was natural for each generation to become richer than the previous one. Now that’s no longer true. These changes created a new, far less predictable dynamic — some people would do much better than their parents could have ever dreamed; others would fall permanently behind. Given the volatility of the changes, the idea of an “average” worker was becoming obsolete. And while much of the discussion about economic inequality has centered on the top 1 percent, it’s the gap between the top 20 percent and the rest that’s more salient to young people. “That is a dividing point,” says Mark Rank, a professor at Washington University in St. Louis. People in the top 20 percent of income — roughly $100,000 in 2013 — have taken nearly all the economic gains of the past 40 years. (Of course, the top 1 percent and, even more so, the top 0.01 percent, has taken a far more disproportionate share.)

The series “Boomerang Kids” was shot in “8 states and over 14 cities, the work is a revealing and compassionate story of Millennials in the United States.”


Monica Navarro, 24, Escondido, Calif.
Degree: B.A., Literature and writing, University of California, San Diego.
Career Goal: Librarian
Current Job: Library volunteer, Home Depot Worker
Student Loans: $44,000

 

Gabriel Gonzalez, 22, Suffern, N.Y.
Degree: B.F.A., Graphic design, School of Visual Arts
Career goal: Graphic designer
Current job: Graphic designer and production assistant
Student Loans: $130,000

 

Alexandria Romo, 28, Austin, Tex.
Degree: B.A., Economics, Loyola University, Chicago
Career goal: Environmentalist
Current Job: Working at a corporate-security firm
Student Loans: $90,000

 
More after the jump…
 

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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‘Torchwood’ star John Barrowman opens Commonwealth Games with same-sex kiss

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Well done to Torchwood star John Barrowman, who opened the twentieth Commonwealth Games in Glasgow last night with a kiss.

The ceremony, which was held at Celtic Park in the city’s east end, began with a kitsch musical number performed by Barrowman and comedy actress Karen Dunbar celebrating Scotland’s diverse culture and history. In front of an estimated television audience of 1.5 billion, Mr. Barrowman kissed one of the kilted male dancers during a sequence on Gretna Green—the romantic village where eloping couples have traditionally married.

The kiss was accompanied by shouts of “Here’s to equality in Scotland.”

The bill for gay marriage in Scotland received Royal assent in March this year, and the first gay weddings will take place in 2015.

The theme of the opening ceremony was equality for all, and Mr. Barrowman’s kiss highlighted the fact that homosexuality is a prisonable offense in an astonishing 42 of the 54 Commonwealth nations taking part on the games.

Among the other artists taking part in the “Friendly games” opening ceremony were Rod Stewart, Nicola Bendetti, Amy MacDonald, DJ Mylo, Billy Connolly, Susan Boyle, Karen Dunbar, Ewan MacGregor and 41 Scottish Terriers. Read a review here.
 

 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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Mick Jagger on Monty Python reunion: ‘A bunch of wrinkly old men trying to relive their youth’
06.30.2014
06:16 am

Topics:
Amusing
Current Events

Tags:
Mick Jagger
Monty Python

evilnohtyp.jpg
 
Never one to shy away from publicity, Mick Jagger sends himself up in this latest plug for Monty Python Live (Mostly), screened during today’s Python press conference.

Jagger, who has been touring with The Rolling Stones, gamely pokes fun at himself and his fellow bandmates as he discusses lighting and set lists for with an assistant:

Monty Python—are they still going? I mean, who wants to see that again really? It was really funny in the sixties… Still, a bunch of wrinkly old men trying to relive their youth and make a load of money, I mean, the best one died years ago!

The Pythons will be performing ten gigs this July at the O2 Arena in London. John Cleese has described the event as being more like a rock show than a piece of theater. The first show sold out in 40 seconds, leading to extra dates being added.
 

 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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Black female filmmaker gently goes face-to-face with Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis
05.30.2014
12:54 pm

Topics:
Current Events
Movies
Race

Tags:
The Aryans


 
Mo Asumang, who’s the daughter of a black Ghanaian father and a white German mother, talks to the BBC about her new documentary The Aryans in which she peacefully confronts racists about what makes them tick.

There are some real zingers in this short piece, especially when she confronts a Ku Klux Klan member about his garb.

Filmmaker Mo Asumang embarks on a journey into the abyss of political evil and finds out that the Aryans originally come from an area which now belongs to Iran. ‘The Aryans’ is a personal journey into the madness of racism: Mo Asumang meets German neo-Nazis, America’s most notorious racist Tom Metzger and members of the Ku Klux Klan in the Midwest. When she encounters the true Aryans in Iran, she realizes that they are friendly and cosmopolitan people who lay no claims to being members of a superior race.

What I like about Mo’s interview style is her gentle approach. She’s not confrontational. It’s almost like the KKK members are ashamed or feel shameful of what they’re doing when they speak to her.  That’s a unique talent!
 

 
Via reddit

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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The RAPID deterioration of Detroit according to Google Street View is both shocking and sad
05.29.2014
11:50 am

Topics:
Current Events
Economy
Environment

Tags:
Detroit


 
The Tumblr GooBing Detroit shows the utterly jaw-dropping deterioration of neighborhoods in Detroit using Google Street View and Bing Street View. What’s shocking is how rapidly the decline happened! A lot of these examples only span five years!


Eastside Detroit: Arndt between Elmwood and Ellery: 2009, 2011, 2013
 

Northeast Detroit: Boulder between Liberal and Novara: 2009, 2011, 2013
 

Northeast Detroit: Hoyt between Liberal and Pinewood: 2008, 2011, 2013
 

Northeast Detroit: Hazelridge between Celestine and Macray: 2009, 2011, 2013
 
Below, Google Street View video of apartments on Houston Whittier in northeast Detroit:

 
More images after the jump…

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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