April 23, 2012
Terror Management Theory
From Michael Shermer's "Skeptic" column in the April Scientific American: "[British philosopher Stephen] Cave argues that legacy is the driving force behind works of art, music, literature, science, culture, architecture, and other artifacts of civilization. How? Because of something called Terror Management Theory. Awareness of one's mortality focuses the mind to create and produce to avoid the terror that comes from confronting the mortality paradox that would otherwise, in the words of the theory's proponents — psychologists Sheldon Solomon, Jeff Greenberg and Tom Pyszczynski — reduce people to 'twitching blobs of biological protoplasm completely perfused with anxiety and unable to effectively respond to the demands of their immediate surroundings.'"
Best. Bandages. Ever.
"Four awesome injury explanations."
TeleTweet app: Twitter x Morse Code
"For those of you who enjoy slow and arduous ways
of getting your mundane tweets read."
Fish Head Lollipop
"This Fish Head Sucker looks shockingly like a real fish head. Thankfully it tastes like lemon, not fish."
John Lennon's Childhood Stamp Album
It's in the collection of the Smithsonian's National Postal Museum, which until yesterday I never knew existed.
From the museum's online album page: "John Lennon, along with Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr achieved superstardom as the rock and roll band, The Beatles. But before Lennon travelled the globe playing music with The Beatles, this boy from Liverpool, England saw the world in a whole different way —through stamps. Lennon's older cousin, Stanley Parkes, inspired the future Beatle's interest in stamp collecting and gave him this album. Lennon replaced Parkes' name and address on the album's flyleaf with his own. He added his address at Mendips, the home he shared with his aunt Mary ("Mimi") and her husband George Smith. Already a budding artist, Lennon sketched beards and mustaches onthe likenesses of Queen Victoria and King George VI on the album's title page. Lennon continued to collect and trade stamps for several years after receiving this album."
Fair warning: there goes the afternoon.
[via Jacqueline Trescott and the Washington Post]
TopChips microwave potato chip maker is no humbug
I stopped by the store and bought one each of the following: potato, sweet potato, turnip, parsnip, daikon, carrot, apple, pear.
I opened the box, read the directions, and started microwaving away.
I've tried each of the vegetables and am here to report that they are delectable.
Above, carrot slices.
No — they're not fried because there's no oil involved.
The directions say "TopChips is not a dehydrator."
OK, then — what is it?
All I know is that the vegetables take three minutes on high and some come out crisp (potato), some come out chewy (carrot, turnip, parsnip, daikon), and they all taste remarkably like the actual vegetable, with good mouthfeel and texture.
Directions to ignore: 1) "Peel vegetables" — no need, just wash and slice; 2) "When cooking potatoes, dry them [the slices] first using a paper towel before placing them on the TopChips" — again, don't bother.
You want to see your kids eat turnips and parsnips?
Get one of these, let 'em make their own chips and Bob's your uncle.
I'm buying two more trays (you can stack up to three) to decrease the amount of time and effort putting the vegetables in/taking them out of the microwave.
Is this the most skilled forklift operator in the world?
Poignant on Amazon
Yesterday I was reading reviews of folding camp seats and happened on the one above for a version made by Coleman (pictured below).
I stopped reading and bought it.