November 08, 2008
"DWR project 2."
Photograph by Christine Taylor.
[via Interior design room]
Pen and Pencil Holders
From the website:
Pen and Pencil Holders
Although these coil-spring holders with rare earth magnet bases
are wonderful fridge magnets for holding a pen or pencil plus a grocery list, they are equally useful in the shop for similar purposes, and to hold small LED flashlights, Sharpies, screwdrivers, chuck keys, etc.
Sold in sets of three in a tin that is perfect for small-item storage since it's a snap-lid style — press the center to open, press the edge to close.
Three for $8.95.
10 Most Irritating Phrases in the English Language
1. At the end of the day
2. Fairly unique
3. I personally
4. At this moment in time
5. With all due respect
7. It’s a nightmare
8. Shouldn’t of
10. It’s not rocket science
• Sterling Silver: $280
• 14k Yellow Gold: $2,350
• Platinum: $6,600
Pick up the bling phone, then apply within.
[via Interior design room]
Meet Eric Jenkins: The world's foremost collector of notes left by motorists on broken parking meters
Jenkins (top), an associate professor of architecture at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., over the past 10 years has gathered a collection of about 75 such desperate notes from across the country.
The Post piece follows.
- Seeking Justice (and Mercy) From the Meter Reader
The note was eloquent in its simplicity. "No god" was all it said.
The person who wrote it had meant to write "No good" — as in out of order, busted, kaput — but "No god" was perhaps closer to the point: Would a just and loving god allow broken parking meters?
That is the sort of existential thought that went through my mind as I perused a unique collection assembled by Eric Jenkins. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Eric has the world's foremost collection of notes left by motorists on broken parking meters: those desperate missives hurriedly scribbled to an unseen meter reader in the hope of a little mercy.
"Hey," the notes seem to argue, "I'm not the sort of person who wouldn't pay for parking. I tried — Lord knows I tried — but this meter is broken. Give me a break, will you?"
That's the subtext of the notes, but the text is usually a little terser:
"Won't take money."
"It is out of services!"
"Takes Money Does Not Give Time!!"
"You see a lot of exclamation points," Eric, the connoisseur, pointed out as he lifted notes from an overstuffed box. "There's a lot of fear and anxiety."
Eric is an associate professor of architecture at Catholic University, and he has an architect's fascination with the engineering required to produce and affix these notes. It's a creative challenge: Using just the materials found somewhere on your person or in your car, can you persuade a ticket-dispensing bureaucrat to cut you some slack?
Man, the toolmaking animal, resorts to envelopes, napkins, paper bags, Rolodex cards, Post-Its. One note is scrawled on the back of a Superior Court detention list (meters near courthouses are prime collecting territory). Another is on the back of a bib from the Fairfax pediatric practice of Drs. Kacedan and Wolf.
"This is on a CVS receipt," said Eric, reading the message. " 'I put money in the meter. It would not take. I am calling the appropriate office.' "
It is signed "Citizen."
Then once you've written the note, how do you attach it to the meter? Perhaps you use a rubber band from the glove compartment or some string from the trunk. Eric has an example that used tape from an in-car first-aid kit and another that used an "Air Mail" sticker from the Post Office.
"This is a good one," he said, holding up a note stuffed inside a long, thin, plastic Washington Post newspaper bag that had been wrapped around a meter. "This is Christo gone nuts."
A common method is to fold up the note and shove it in the coin slot, where it resembles a prayer stuffed in a crack of Jerusalem's Western Wall.
Which brings up an important point: Are these notes, well, sacred? And if so, is it right to snatch them?
"There are ethical questions," Eric admitted. "Can you take this note, which is a prayer? Can you intervene between god and a citizen in this prayer?" God in this case being the metermaid, a figure from the Old Testament if ever there was one.
Eric decided the answer was no. Intervening was like plucking a wild bird from the jungle, like violating the "Star Trek" prime directive. He used to harvest the notes only after the parking restrictions for that particular spot were lifted — after 6:30 p.m., for example — but now he doesn't take them at all. "I decided I would only photograph them," he said.
Friends across the country who know of Eric's interest also send him examples. He has about 75, gathered over the last 10 years.
The fact is, a note alone probably won't do any good. In the District, you're allowed to park at a broken meter, but you have to report it right away by calling 202-541-6030 and providing the number printed on a little decal on the meter.
But that doesn't stop us from trying to reason, argue and cajole an unseen arbitrator:
"Meter is broken!!! No ticket please!"
"This [meter] does not register quarters. I put in $1.70 in this at 12 noon. Please do NOT give me a ticket. I put this same complaint on another broken meter last week and you STILL gave me a ticket."
"I put 2 hours worth of quarters in this meter and it jammed on the last one. There were plenty of witnesses that saw me struggle to twist the knob back, as God is my witness."
There they are, bringing Him into it again.
Here's Kelly's video interview with Jenkins, which concludes with Jenkins' remarking that what interests him most about the subject is how people try to solve a problem with whatever materials happen to be at hand — in other words, it's really an exploration of human ingenuity and creativity under pressures of both time (in all senses of the word) and resources.
Audio Bone — 'Ear-free listening'
"Bone conduction technology to transmit stereo music through your bones directly to your inner ear."
Blue, Black, Orange or White.
Minority Report — Mac-style
From the website:
- Undercover 2.5
If your credit card gets stolen, police can track it down by finding out where the thieves use it. Undercover does the same thing for Macs. When you install the app, it registers a unique ID for your Mac. If your machine is stolen, the system transmits its Internet location; Orbicule will then cooperate with law enforcement officials to locate the system physically and recover it. The latest version even adds support for iSight cameras, so your Mac can snap a mug shot of the miscreants. In case recovery fails, Undercover has an ingenious plan B. Undercover will simulate a hardware failure, urging the thief or someone who purchased the stolen Mac to send it in for repair, making recovery easier.
What’s New in this Version
• Undercover now only connects to the Internet when a network change occurs, reducing network traffic while making the system even more aggressive
• Memory footprint and CPU usage have been dramatically reduced — in most cases, memory footprint is down 75%
• In addition, Undercover sports dozens of under-the-hood improvements and fixes
• Undercover is compatible with Tiger and Leopard
Forever Bouquet — 'Never say die'
From bookofjoe fans Ashley Connors ("the business head") and Hannah ("the creative head") comes news of their new toy and gift company called "hoopla," based in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Hoopla is a great, underused word and perhaps their business will jumpstart its popularity in the lexicon.
But I digress.
From the hoopla website:
Real flowers die ... the Forever Bouquet never will.
The kit has one dozen colorful ready-to-be cut flowers arranged in a booklet, along with pre-cut wire and pop-out vase.
All you need to do is cut out your flower(s) of choice,
stick wire onto the back for support and shaping, and pop out the vase.
Then, place it in a prominent location for optimum enjoyment — you’ll have freshly cut flowers that will never need sun or water!
Flowers stand approximately 9" tall and are printed on quality card stock made of recycled paper.
Vase stands just under 5" tall.
• 12 different ready-to-be-cut flowers
• 12 pieces of pre-cut wire
• 1 pop-out plastic vase
• Booklet is 10" x 6.5"
After reading the "step-by-step bouquet assembly tutorial," I am pleased to report that this item is TechnoDolt™-friendly.
Yes, I believe even I could follow the nicely illustrated instructions and end up with a fine result.
$14.99 (tape not included).