Saturday, 01 September 2012
INTERESTING STUFF: 1 September 2012
EDITORIAL NOTE: This the Interesting Stuff post meant for last Saturday when, instead, I had a mini-fit over Mitt Romney's apparent birther conversion. Events move quickly in our 21st century world and one or two of these may be slightly outdated not to mention the glaring omission of Neal Armstrong's death. But that's no reason to trash an otherwise good post that is already written.
NOT A BIG DEAL BUT AMUSING ANYWAY
Unless Tropical Storm Isaac derails the Republican convention next week, the party faithful will be greeted with this billboard in Tampa (via Hullabaloo):
WORLD'S OLDEST FLASH MOB
Mage Bailey of Postcards sent this video of 80 people aged 65 to 92 creating a flash mob in Auckland, New Zealand earlier this month.
This flash mob was fun but the larger purpose was to raise awareness of the need for a lot more accessible housing to meet needs as the aging population grows.
”The Lifemark is an independent seal of approval awarded to homes that meet a set of design criteria to ensure that a home is adaptable and accessible for all members of your family now and into the future.”
You can read more about it here.
ONE TERM MORE
Susan Heath from New York City was the first of half a dozen TGB readers to suggest this political parody of our election year for Interesting Stuff. The music is, of course, the well-known One Day More from the show, “Les Miserables.”
You can find out more about the production and read the lyrics here.
EINSTEIN'S FUZZY SLIPPERS
No video with this item. No political message or any oh-so-cute babies or animals. Just an American icon of genius in his – wait for it – fuzzy slippers. I love it and thought you should see it too.
This image turned up from the Retronaut newsletter, a recent find of mine that daily publishes vintage photos and other images. The website subtitle is “The past is a foreign country. This is your passport.”
COMEDIAN PHYLLIS DILLER DIES AT AGE 95
Diller hit her stride during an interesting period of cultural transformation and for a long time, with husband “Fang” as her foil, she mined the comedic divide between the bored housewife era of the 1950s and the explosion of the women's movement a short time later.
I can't be certain, but if she was not the first woman standup comedian, she was close. And I always liked her cackling laugh. Here's a clip of her from 1969 on The Ed Sullivan Show.
You can read more about Phyllis Diller's life here.
HISTORY OF TRICKLE DOWN ECONOMICS
Cartoon political commentary on how we got into our economic mess and what any sane person knows needs to happen to make things better. (From Larry Beck who blogs at Woodgate's View).
There is more information at the Center for American Progress.
75th ANNIVERSARY OF GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE
The event went right past me when it happened in May. Maybe you missed it too. The fireworks anniversary celebration of the Golden Gate Bridge is spectacularly beautiful with this video produced by Michael Coleman. (Thanks to John Starbuck of For a Dancer)
THE ORIGINAL HOPPER HOUSES
Most of us are more familiar with Edward Hopper's brooding, nighttime urban images, but he also painted a lot of houses along the ocean in Massachusetts. Photographer Gail Albert Halaban, of the Edwynn Houk Gallery, has been tracking down the original buildings Hopper painted as they look today.
Recently, The New York Times posted a slide show of the paintings/houses. Here is one set.
You can see the entire series of original houses/paintings beginning here.
BIG CATS PURRING
Researchers keep working on it but none have yet figured out why cats purr. It has been said that our purring house cats can sooth frazzled nerves and lower blood pressure.
Even though it's not news to me, I can still be surprised a bit when I'm reminded that the big cats purr too. This is a cheetah named Caine with linguist Robert Eklund at the Dell Cheetah Centre in South Africa:
You can find out pretty much everything science so far knows about purring at this website.
Interesting Stuff is a weekly listing of short takes and links to web items that have caught my attention; some related to aging and some not, some useful and others just for fun.
You are all encouraged to submit items for inclusion. Just click “Contact” in the upper left corner of any Time Goes By page to send them. I'm sorry that I probably won't have time to acknowledge receipt and there is no guarantee of publication. But when I do include them, you will be credited and I will link to your blog if you have one.