June 22, 2017

Informed Delivery — USPS Channels "Minority Report"

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From the USPS website: "Seeing what's in the mail has never been more convenient."

June 22, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

David Chang Momofuku x Nike Limited-Edition


From Eater:



You know you've made it when Nike asks you to collaborate on a limited edition sneaker. 

Time to induct Momofuku maestro David Chang into the hall of fame: his personal shoe drops today.


The reigning sneaker company hooked up with Chang through his cousin, who has worked at the company for a while.

Momofuku has catered Nike events through the years, and its senior creative director was one of Noodle Bar's first customers.

"This is all so crazy! I've looked up to Nike as a brand and company for years," Chang fanboyed in an email to Eater.

The sneaker itself is a high top made with dark denim — just like the aprons at Momofuku — and an embroidered Lucky Peach logo.

The numbers 163 and 207 are on the sock liners, signifying the addresses of the original Noodle Bar location and Ssam Bar, respectively.

The $110 shoe will be available at 10 a.m. today, June 22, at Fuku in the East Village and at select Nike retailers tomorrow.

June 22, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 21, 2017

The Oldest Human-Made Metal Object Ever Discovered in South America


From Atlas Obscura:


About 3,000 years ago, someone in the Andes in what is now northwestern Argentina made an object unlike any other archaeologists have found in South America, reports LiveScience.

This sheet of metal, 7 inches long by 6 inches wide, was given the features of a person — eyes, nose, and mouth holes.

Along the edges, whoever created this object made small, circular holes — at the corners of the sheet and its middle, bottom, and top.

As far as anyone in our own time can tell, it was meant to be a mask.

This discovery, reported in a new paper in the journal Antiquity, is one of the oldest examples of metalwork in South America and the oldest manmade metal object on the continent.

There are older examples of metalwork but "none of the artifacts had been intentionally shaped into a recognizable form, nor were any perforated or shaped into three-dimensional objects," the paper's authors report. "This mask is unique."

It was initially discovered by locals in 2005, when a rainstorm washed it from the ground.

In the place where the mask was found, archaeologists uncovered the remains of 14 individuals.

One of the skeletons showed green stains, which indicated that the mask had been buried there.

At the time the mask was created, people in that part of the world were moving from hunting and gathering to a more sedentary, agricultural existence.

It was previously thought that the practice of metalworking in this part of the world originated in what is now Peru but as the authors write, this new discovery indicates that there may be more than one origin point for this craft in South America.

June 21, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

"This new Moleskine is like an iPad made of paper"




Ask companies like Adobe and Fiftythree and they'll tell you that tablets are the future of drawing. Give in, and get used to the concept of touching a stylus to your screen. Because as hardware and software get better, you'll be able to create the sorts of things you can only dream about creating on paper.

Moleskine — the preeminent journal company with no lack of self-interest in keeping paper alive — has presented its vision of another possible future. Its new Livescribe Notebook appears to be a typical Moleskine. Except when you write on it with a Livescribe Smartpen (a pen known for turning written paper notes into typed digital transcripts), your doodles and brainstorms not only are automatically backed up to an app, they're also infused with the conveniences of digital-native technologies.

The pen is programmed with the exact lines, margins, and buttons of the Moleskine notebook paper, so it always knows where the pen is hitting the paper, which opens the possibilities for a gee-whiz user experience. If you'd like to tag a sketch to pull up later, you simply tap on one of three icons printed at the bottom the page — a star, flag, or tag — much like you might tap an icon in your Gmail inbox. If you'd like to record a verbal note alongside your sketch, there are play, pause, and record icons at the bottom of the page. Additionally, two pull-out bookmarks offer some logistical features as well, like letting you update your pen's Wi-Fi settings (complete with password support), pairing your pen, or scrubbing through your recordings.

Now, a Livescribe pen — coupled with a Livescribe journal — can already pull off a lot of these stunts on their own. The cleverness here is that Moleskine and Livescribe are both thinking beyond their own brands, and designed the book and pen to work in tandem.

Moleskine is a powerful brand that does $100 million in sales a year, which Livescribe can use to extend its reach. At the same time, more than 90% of Moleskine’s revenue is from paper products. Livescribe offers Moleskine an opportunity to stay relevant in the digital age.




Notebook: $29.95.

Pen: $179.95.

June 21, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 20, 2017

Moist Towelette Museum


From Atlas Obscura:


This museum, housed in the Michigan State University planetarium, boasts a thousand-strong collection of tiny towelettes, including a used one from the hosts of "Car Talk."

The office of John French, a university employee who works in the planetarium, houses what is likely the campus's least visited, most unusual museum.


There, French keeps a display case full of his collection of moist towelettes from around the globe, with all but one unopened.

Beginning 20 years ago, when French first started collecting towelettes, the museum eventually outgrew its first display case as people donated more and more unique towelettes.

Some of the most notable include one called "Finger Pinkies," which is advertised as "the secretary’s hand cleaner," a few from the Hard Rock Cafés in Beijing and Kuala Lumpur, and a series with Star Trek-themed packaging from the show's original run.


The only used towelette in the museum belonged to Tom and Ray Magliozzi, the hosts of the radio program "Car Talk." French says that he asked them to donate any towelettes they might have, not knowing they would send him a used one. He has considered asking other celebrities for their used towelettes but decided it might be "a little weird."

The Moist Towelette Museum's website provides a sneak peek into the vast collection, but it can only be fully experienced in person, by visiting French's office at certain times in the week.



Tell him I sent you for an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour.

June 20, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

Super-Size French Fries


Each plush fry is 15" tall.

Does Morgan Spurlock know about this?



June 20, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 19, 2017

What and where is it?


Answer here this time tomorrow.

Hint: in the lower 48.

Another: in a state whose name begins with M.

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You're welcome.

June 19, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Industrial Strength Disinfectant Spray That Doesn't Smell Like a Hospital


Pictured above, it costs $19.82 for a big 32 oz. (1/4 gallon) spray bottle.

For decades I've been vexed by stinky running shoes whose off-putting stench withstood repeated hot water washings with bleach.

I had my Crack Research Team©® drill down to find out exactly what made my shoes so resistant to deodorizing.

They reported back that the cause of foul shoe odor is bacteria that withstand the usual treatments.

Then I had the Team®© look into remedies for bacteria-based smells and they came up with Pura Cleen.

The bottle says "Citrus Scent" — I wouldn't go that far but it's sure not institutional, instead being rather mild and pretty much innocuous, so much so that you don't even notice it unless you put your face right near the shoe.

This stuff really works and gets my highest recommendation.

If you're not satisfied, let me know and I'll refund every penny you paid.

There may be a reason why this internet gig has never really paid off for me....

Ya think?

Never mind.

June 19, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

June 18, 2017

Roman Roads — Subway Map Style



By Sasha Trubetskoy.

June 18, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Marble iPhone Case


Solid marble.


Mikol sells 10,000 of them every year.


From $85.

[via AdWeek]

June 18, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 17, 2017

TARDIS Library


From Atlas Obscura:



The homemade TARDIS was recently installed on Detroit's Warren Avenue.

The life-size prop replica is the work of local Dr. Who fan Dan Zemke, who also runs a branch of the youth reading program, Reach-Out-and-Read.

Zemke combined his two passions to create the new mini-library.


Unlike the fictional TARDIS, Zemke's creation is not bigger on the inside but it does have room for around 140 books that he hopes people will circulate and replace as they trade them out.

It is a spitting image of the iconic BBC ship.

At 10 feet tall and weighing a ton the whimsical new library is hard to miss.

Zemke told Parade magazine that people claim to have almost gotten in car accidents after seeing it parked there on the corner.



There's a Facebook page with all the details.

June 17, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Specialized Q-Tips


Six varieties to choose from.


Extra-long (6") sturdy wood.


I like the double-sided with regular and tapered tips (top).


There's a style to suit pretty much any task you might undertake.


100 of any of the six versions:



June 17, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 16, 2017

Boiling* River in the Amazon Rainforest

From Atlas Obscura:


For 12 years, Ruzo was skeptical that the river truly existed. Then, as he was creating a thermal map of Peru during his graduate studies at Southern Methodist University in Texas he discovered an unusually large hot spot — one of the largest geothermal features found on any continent.

In November 2011, he went on an expedition to central Peru with his aunt to see the Boiling River for himself. From the nearest city, Pucallpa, the entire journey took about four hours, including a two-hour drive, 45-minute motorized canoe ride, and an hour hike along muddy jungle paths. The river is protected by the shaman of the small town Mayantuyacu, a secluded healing center. After getting special permission from the shaman to study the water, Ruzo was led by the shaman's apprentice to the almost four-mile-long stretch of flowing scalding water.

The water temperature ranges from 120°F degrees up to almost 200°F [*close enough], and reaches 16 feet deep in some places. The mud of the riverbank was too hot to walk on, and if you fell in your skin would be covered in third-degree burns in less than a second. Small unfortunate animals, like frogs, could be found floating dead and broiled in the water, the "eyes always seem to cook first turning milky white," Ruzo wrote in National Geographic.

Ruzo, wearing only sandals, carefully hopped between small white rocks to take samples of different areas of the river. He found that the water averages 187°F degrees, which isn't quite boiling, but is still really hot, with steam emanating off the surface.

The geothermal feature struck Ruzo as odd since it isn't located near volcanic or magmatic activity. "Boiling rivers exist," he wrote, "but they're always near volcanoes."

A body of water the size of the Boiling River requires a heat source with a lot of energy, yet the closest active volcano is more than 400 miles away and there are no known magmatic [sic] systems in the Amazon jungle. After some investigating and testing different hypotheses, Ruzo and his research colleagues believe that a fault-led hydrothermal feature was causing the river to reach such temperatures. The water seeps deep into the earth, heats up underground, and resurfaces through faults and cracks. His team is still conducting further research on the river's unique thermal characteristics.

Since his initial visit to the Boiling River, the trip from Pucallpa has been reduced to a three-hour direct drive because of the rapid deforestation and commercialization of the area. To preserve the sacred river, Ruzo started the Boiling River Project to protect and study the natural wonder in a safe manner. He details his experience with the Boiling River in his book "The Boiling River: Adventure and Discovery in the Amazon."


More here.

June 16, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

Super Mario Heat Change Mug



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June 16, 2017 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 15, 2017

BehindTheMedspeak: Why you should insist your surgery be the first scheduled case of the day

Predicted prob AE

Seems like a no-brainer to me.

But then, so do a lot of things.

When you have no brain that's pretty much your baseline.

But I digress.


From the Duke University Department of Anesthesiology came this juicy study, confirming what's been been pretty obvious to me since I entered my third year of med school (September 1972, U.C.L.A.) and my clinical rotations and really clear once I began my anesthesia residency (September 1977, once again U.C.L.A.) and ever since: as the day wears on, problems multiply.

By the time the bumped cases and add-ons get going in the late afternoon, you're not getting maximum capability and attention from your doctors — yes, even anesthesiologists like moi.

For cryin' out loud, we're tired!

It's been a long day, we've been up since before 6 a.m., and you expect first-class treatment, our very best?

Wake up and smell the isoflurane, baby.

Feel the propofol burn.

It ain't happening.

Not in your O.R.

So make sure you're the first scheduled case and things will have a better chance of going the way they should.

Thankfully for you, anesthesiology's a very forgiving specialty: trust me, me and my departments have graduated some very, shall we say, shaky... residents out into the great world.

But I digress.

Start time

Wrote James Hamblin in The Atlantic, "In a study of surgeries at Duke, the likelihood of problems related to anesthesia increased from a low of 1% during surgeries starting at 9 a.m. to a high of 4.2% for those starting at 4 p.m., possibly because practitioners grew tired over the course of the day."

Here's the abstract of the 2006 paper.


Time of day effects on the incidence of anesthetic adverse events

Background: We hypothesized that time of day of surgery would influence the incidence of anesthetic adverse events (AEs).

Methods: Clinical observations reported in a quality improvement database were categorized into different AEs that reflected (1) error, (2) harm, and (3) other AEs (error or harm could not be determined) and were analyzed for effects related to start hour of care.

Results: As expected, there were differences in the rate of AEs depending on start hour of care. Compared with a reference start hour of 7 am, other AEs were more frequent for cases starting during the 3 pm and 4 pm hours (p < 0.0001). Post hoc inspection of data revealed that the predicted probability increased from a low of 1.0% at 9 am to a high of 4.2% at 4 pm. The two most common event types (pain management and postoperative nausea and vomiting) may be primary determinants of these effects.

Conclusions: Our results indicate that clinical outcomes may be different for patients anesthetized at the end of the work day compared with the beginning of the day. Although this may result from patient related factors, medical care delivery factors such as case load, fatigue, and care transitions may also be influencing the rate of anesthetic AEs for cases that start in the late afternoon.


Related: On March 30, 2013 I explained here why surgery on weekends is not in your best interest.

[via a reader in New Mexico who emailed me last week asking for advice about anesthesia for his upcoming orthopedic procedure. You inspired me to offer the same advice today to all my readers that I gave you then. Free, the way we like it. And worth every penny you paid for it. Wait a sec....]

June 15, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

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