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April 4, 2010

Jeremy Bentham's Head


"One preserved human... is the British economist and philosopher Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832), whose body is seated in a chair in a glass case at University College London [above]. His head is now a wax reproduction. His real head [below] 


is taken out only for ceremonial dinners to satisfy the clause in the economist's will requiring his presence at such events."

You could look it up.

According to Wikipedia, "As requested in his will, Bentham's body was dissected as part of a public anatomy lecture. Afterward, the skeleton and head were preserved and stored in a wooden cabinet called the 'Auto-icon,' with the skeleton stuffed out with hay and dressed in Bentham's clothes. Originally kept by his disciple Thomas Southwood Smith, it was acquired by University College London in 1850. It is normally kept on public display at the end of the South Cloisters in the main building of the college, but for the 100th and 150th anniversaries of the college, it was brought to the meeting of the College Council, where it was listed as 'present but not voting.'"

"The Auto-icon has a wax head, as Bentham's head was badly damaged in the preservation process. The real head was displayed in the same case [below, between Bentham's feet] 


for many years, but became the target of repeated student pranks, including being stolen on more than one occasion. It is now locked away securely."

More on the subject here.

April 4, 2010 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Smart Move Tape


Recommended by Elon Schoenholz, grand panjandrum of Kevin Kelly's Cool Tools, so you know it must be good.

Wrote Schoenholz, "Two things smoothed out my family’s move a few years ago: designating Open First boxes for each room in our new home, so that on the first night after the move we wouldn’t be missing any essentials; and this Smart Move Tape.

"The clearly marked and color-coded designations (Office, Bedroom, Bedroom #2, Kitchen, Storage, etc.) made unloading go quickly for our movers, and organizing our many cardboard moving boxes much easier for us later on. No doubt we could have accomplished something similar with a handful of colored Sharpies, but it would have taken a lot of consistently careful writing to even approach the same effect—at a time when we were looking to make less work, not more—and the colored tapes really help make sorting a breeze."

2"W x 30'-long rolls, apiece: $2.95.

April 4, 2010 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Why do I leave offensive comments up?


It's a question I'm asked from time to time, and quite reasonably so.

I mean, it's my website and I can very easily get rid of mean-spirited contributions like that up top, which came in last evening in response to my iPad post of earlier in the day.

The answer wasn't at all obvious to me so I let it percolate a while and then the penny dropped.

The reason I let rants and insults stand is that I figure it makes the world a safer place.

You say, how's that, joe?

Simple: I figure as long as I give a place to vent to people who are into online attack, that makes it that much less likely they'll go get a gun and start shooting random people.

Good thinking?





April 4, 2010 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Spicy Knife Holder


Six steak knives and a holder, stainless steel blades and rubber.


Black, Gold or Red.



April 4, 2010 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack



[via Gizmodo]

April 4, 2010 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Fight dirty with Soap Knuckles



All-natural glycerin soap cast from genuine brass knuckles.


Perfect for the street tough germaphobe.

2 soaps, 2 oz. each, 5" x 3" x 0.75".



[via Things That Look Like Other Things]

April 4, 2010 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

The socially clumsy girl's guide to working a room


It's Jo Novelli's new piece, more formally known as "Texts From the Fringe," which just opened Friday.

She emailed me as follows:


Here's the gist for people not living in Phoenix:

Texts From the Fringe is a networking performance  that relies on everyone to play their part.

It uses cell phone technology to invite intimacy between strangers.

From April 2–11, participants agree to receive a series of instructive text messages and follow the directions.

Then they report on their experience participating in the performance, and use the calling cards inviting others to play a part in "Texts From the Fringe." 

It's free and easy.

Here's all you need to do:

1. Text TXTPHXFF to 41411.

2. Then reply Y to confirm your participation.

3. Visit www.txtphxff.com to learn more specifics.

4. Then subscribe and report. 


If you're in the Phoenix area you could do worse than check it out.

Beside which, Jo told me she has magical powers and that if enough people come by and mention my name, she'll send pixie dust in the direction of bookofjoe.

I need all the help I can get.

April 4, 2010 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

What is it?


Answer here this time tomorrow.

April 4, 2010 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

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