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January 19, 2007

World's Oldest Figurative Sculpture Discovered?


That's the word from Kostenki on the Don River, 250 miles from Moscow, Russia.

In the current issue of Science magazine a team led by Michael Anikovich of the Russian Academy of Sciences reports that they found stone and bone tools and a human figurine (above) which appears to have been made about 45,000 years ago.

Here's the abstract of the journal paper.

    Early Upper Paleolithic in Eastern Europe and Implications for the Dispersal of Modern Humans

    Radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating and magnetic stratigraphy indicate Upper Paleolithic occupation—probably representing modern humans—at archaeological sites on the Don River in Russia 45,000 to 42,000 years ago. The oldest levels at Kostenki underlie a volcanic ash horizon identified as the Campanian Ignimbrite Y5 tephra that is dated elsewhere to about 40,000 years ago. The occupation layers contain bone and ivory artifacts, including possible figurative art, and fossil shells imported more than 500 kilometers. Thus, modern humans appeared on the central plain of Eastern Europe as early as anywhere else in northern Eurasia.


Here's a link to last week's BBC story on the find.

Here's a link to John Noble Wilford's January 12, 2007 New York Times Science section story about the discovery.

John F. Hoffecker of the University of Colorado, a member of the research team and the third author of the Science paper, said the small figurine might be "the oldest example of figurative art ever discovered."

Here's a link to a 2002 University of Colorado press release describing the team's findings up to that time.

January 19, 2007 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Avon Hook Up Connector


They've come a long way from "Avon calling."

Long story short: "The Hook Up Connector is a product that lets buyers personalize it by snapping together a mascara, lipstick or other cosmetic (like Lego blocks, in terms of mechanics)."

Claudia H. Deutsch featured Avon's new high-tech system (above) in a story that appears in today's (January 19, 2007) New York Times Business section.

The components are available here.

January 19, 2007 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

MorphWorld: Prada Phone into... iPhone?


I hate to be the one to break it to you but it would appear that Apple might have gotten an unauthorized sneak peek at Prada's stylish new buttonless phone (above), which goes on sale in Europe next month and Asia in March.

Meanwhile, the iPhone remains vaporware until its (scheduled) June release in the U.S, followed by Europe and Asia late this year or possibly even 2008.


So — you can pay $778 (£393; €600) in a couple weeks for the world's most stylin' phone, or cool your jets for another half year.

[via Evan Ramstad and the Wall Street Journal]

January 19, 2007 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Pillow Fight League: Opening night is sold out and tickets are going fast



I guess things are worse than I thought over at the Gray Lady.

On page 28 of today's New York Times Weekend Arts section, top dead center above the fold, is Melena Ryzik's article (with Trevor Roberts's photo, above) about tonight's (Friday, January 19, 2007) premiere of the latest big thing from our neighbor to the north.

The Toronto-based Pillow Fight League (women-only — Iron John-types will please direct their angst at being excluded to Robert Bly, not moi — but I digress) began in the spring of 2006 and now goes international.

Heck, that's even faster than the NFL.

Read the story below.


January 19, 2007 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'5 Ideas For Stressful Living' — by Helgi Einarsson


Einarsson is a 23-year-old man who lives in Iceland.

His blog, everydaywonderland.com, is chock-full of great stuff like the following piece, which appeared on January 13, 2007.

    5 Ideas for Stressful Living

    So, you want your life to be stressful? Didn’t think so, but it’s amazing how many people consistently apply habits and actions in their daily lives that guarantee stressful results. They repeat the same things over and over again, expecting different results, which is, if I recall correctly, the textbook definition of insanity. After hitting the same wall every day for 20 years, people think “okay, if I just really hammer it this time then maybe it suddenly won’t be there.”

    One of the more absurd aspects of the ego is that it conditions you to actively seek negative results. It makes you think that what you want is peace, when its secret pleasure is always in conflict and negativity. In scientific experiments, a mouse quickly learns to avoid the choice that results in electric shock, while the ego-inflicted human being keeps choosing the same negative option over and over again, often through stubborn rationalization enabled by a general lack of awareness.

    I’ve compiled a short list of ideas for those who wish to add a dash of stress into their lives — all fairly easy to implement, not to mention widely encouraged by society at large and often easily observed in the behavior of those around you.


Read the entire post here.

[via Brian "Pookie" Denker and bdenker.blogspot.com]

January 19, 2007 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

I just met a girl named Maria


Maria Callas, who put the "prima" in prima donna, also put the bling into opera before the word existed.

See how she did it in a new exhibition at the Metropolitan Opera (Concourse Level; 64th & Broadway, New York City).

It opens today (Friday, January 19, 2007) at 10 a.m.

Admission is free.

Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sundays Noon-6 p.m.; Closed Saturdays and these selected dates: 1/26; 2/5; 2/16, 2/26; The show runs through March 3, 2007; www.metopera.org; 212-362-6000.

January 19, 2007 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

colourlovers.com — 'Fight for love in the color revolution'


From Darius A. Monsef IV comes this website,


"a resource that monitors and influences color trends."


More: "colourlovers gives the people who use color — whether for ad campaigns, product design, or even in architectural specification — a place to check out a world of color, compare color palettes, submit news and comments, and read color-related articles and interviews."

[via Mollie Sterling-Oakleaf and molliesterling.com]

January 19, 2007 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Skid Mark Brief Safe



From the website:

    The "Brief Safe"

    The "Brief Safe" is an innovative diversion safe that can secure your cash, documents, and other small valuables from inquisitive eyes and thieving hands, both at home and when you're traveling.

    Items can be hidden right under their noses with these specially-designed briefs which contain a fly-accessed 4" x 10" secret compartment with Velcro® closure and "special markings" on the lower rear portion.

    Leave the "Brief Safe" in plain view in your laundry basket or washing machine at home, or in your suitcase in a hotel room — even the most hardened burglar or most curious snoop will "skid" to a screeching halt as soon as they see them — wouldn't you?

    Made in USA.

    One size.

    Color: White (and Brown).



Full disclosure: I found this item on a Baylor University (Go Bears!) fan site, part of a suggestion for Michael Vick as an alternative to hiding his stash in a Water Bottle Safe.

January 19, 2007 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack

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