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December 5, 2013

"A Farewell to Arms" (1932) starring Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes

Directed by Frank Borzage, the film, based on Hemingway's 1929 novel about a love affair between an American ambulance driver and an English nurse in Italy during World War I, received Academy Awards for Best Cinematography and Best Sound, and was nominated for Best Picture and Best Art Direction. 

FunFact: In 1960, the film entered the public domain in the U.S.A. due to the failure of the last claimant, United Artists, to renew its copyright registration in the 28th year after publication. 

I wonder how many people reading this were alive when the book came out in 1929.

Or the movie in 1932.

Let's see... they'd be 84 and 81 years old, respectively.

I'm thinking not many.

If any.

Yes, Doktor Dorftrottel, I've already factored you in.


But I digress.

Geezers, if you're out there and allowed computer access and your filtering program at Geriatric Park lets bookofjoe through and you can still operate a keyboard — yes, I know, that's asking an awful lot — please let us know.

That'll be cheery news indeed.

[via Open Culture]

December 5, 2013 at 08:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Portable outdoor mini stainless steel gas stove — cheap


Wrote reader Richard Kashdan, "I like this because it looks so complicated for the simple thing that it is.


Me too.


From websites:




Features and Details:

• Works with any screw top butane/propane canisters, available just about anywhere

• Ultralight backpacking camp stove is a great stove at low price

• Tiny and lightweight, packaged in a small case for easy carry

• Fully adjustable flame — stove will also simmer.

• Great for camping, cooking, emergencies, etc.

• Piezo ignition




December 5, 2013 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Predicting whether a marriage will implode by looking at a picture


Who knew?

Meeri Kim's November 28 Washington Post story has details; excerpts below.


The harbinger of an unhappy marriage may be your gut.

A new study by psychologists found that newlyweds had underlying positive or negative gut feelings about their spouses that many were unaware of and that predicted marital satisfaction years later.

The experiment used a photo of the newlywed spouse and a series of positive and negative words to elicit a so-called automatic attitude.

"Either people are completely unaware of this automatic attitude, or they're completely aware and just not willing to talk about it," said psychologist and study author James McNulty of Florida State University. The study was published in the journal Science.

Automatic attitudes are unfiltered, knee-jerk reactions that can sometimes oppose the conscious thoughts.

McNulty, who primarily conducts research on romantic relationships, showed a newlywed the photo of his or her spouse for just a third of a second, followed by a word that was positive or negative: "delightful" or "disgusting," for instance. The newlywed, as fast as possible, had to push a button indicating the word that was good or bad.

Psychologists say that seeing the photo for just long enough to recognize who you’re looking at, but not enough to study the detail of the picture, causes your brain to automatically retrieve from memory any associations you have. This facilitates a speedier response to any words that match those associations.

So, for example, a newlywed who pushed the button for a negative word faster than for a positive word after the photo of the new spouse flashed by, was indicating a negative automatic attitude.

McNulty and his colleagues tested for automatic attitudes in 135 heterosexual couples that had gotten married in the previous six months. They filled out a questionnaire about marital satisfaction. Unsurprisingly, the newlyweds' marriage evaluations had a decidedly rosy outlook. At six-month intervals for the next four years, each partner reevaluated his or her feelings about the marriage using the same questionnaire.

As time passed and the honeymoon phases waned, the initial automatic attitudes gradually started to match up with their reported happiness or unhappiness.

Twelve of the couples divorced within the four years of the study, McNulty said.

So are some people just in denial about their unhappiness, or are they completely unaware of these feelings to begin with?

McNulty said there is pressure for newlyweds to seem ecstatic: "They just got married, spent thousands of dollars on their wedding, and committed to one another in public. They better be happy."

But because they were later able to admit their less-than-stellar opinions of the partnership, it suggests that certain people may not realize their deep feelings. But there's no fooling an automatic attitude test.

"People can't fake it. They don't even know what it’s measuring," he said.


Podcast interview with study author James McNulty here.

Below, the abstract of the paper published in Science.


Though They May Be Unaware, Newlyweds Implicitly Know Whether Their Marriage Will Be Satisfying

For decades, social psychological theories have posited that the automatic processes captured by implicit measures have implications for social outcomes. Yet few studies have demonstrated any long-term implications of automatic processes, and some scholars have begun to question the relevance and even the validity of these theories. At baseline of our longitudinal study, 135 newlywed couples (270 individuals) completed an explicit measure of their conscious attitudes toward their relationship and an implicit measure of their automatic attitudes toward their partner. They then reported their marital satisfaction every 6 months for the next 4 years. We found no correlation between spouses’ automatic and conscious attitudes, which suggests that spouses were unaware of their automatic attitudes. Further, spouses’ automatic attitudes, not their conscious ones, predicted changes in their marital satisfaction, such that spouses with more positive automatic attitudes were less likely to experience declines in marital satisfaction over time.

December 5, 2013 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

"The Counselor"-recommended life termination tool: Wet work in your pocket


If you happened to see the riveting new movie "The Counselor" you will have first heard of and then seen demonstrated on the streets of London a frightening tool for assassination.


Now comes Unikia, out of Norway rather than a lawless Russian "stan" republic, with a consumer version styled as a "microlock."


Yes, yes, I know — they know nothing about any applications outside the personal EDC microlock space but come on, girls and guys: wake up and smell the gravlax*!


From the website:




World's Smallest Microlock


Sometimes you just have the need to secure your belongings.


Be it your pram, your bag, your bike… with the Microlock you always have a handy lock available!


The Microlock is only about 4 cm (1.6") in diameter, but it contains a 66 cm (26")-long super strong wire, so you can lock anything anywhere.

You can easily roll the wire back onto the Microlock, making it very easy both to carry and to use.

It has a preset two-digit code.



*Norwegian: gravlaks

December 5, 2013 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Through Google Glass, Darkly

YouTube caption: "An experiment in early morning video under low light conditions."

December 5, 2013 at 04:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

USB Heated Futon Mouse Pad — Warming Winter Desktop Device


From the website:




No stick-your-hand-in-a-whale affair and no silly furry animals in sight.

Thanko has taken the best features of the kotatsu — Japanese heated table — and combined them into a Futon Mouse Pad, a USB-heated cover to keep your beavering hands toasty during the winter days at the office.

At first glance this looks just like the mattress and quilt that is so classically Japanese, but it's even more modern and practical than that.

It fits together with Velcro, so simple that you don't even need to be able to make a bed to work it.

Just connect the USB cable to your computer, slip in your hand — and you will be super snug in no time.

It even reaches temperatures up to 50°C (122°F).

Just be careful not to overuse it and burn yourself!

The heater can also be taken out, so the "pillow" can be used just as a regular arm or wrist rest for hands weary from typing.

Features and Details:

• Power: USB 2.0

• Weight: 115g (4.1 oz)

• Size: 255 x 275 x 38mm (10" x 10.8" x 1.5")

• Temperature: up to 50°C (122°F) — be careful not to burn yourself (!)

• Also be sure that USB cable cools down properly after it is disconnected



December 5, 2013 at 12:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

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