September 29, 2014

"The Anonymous Gods of Google Street View"

September 28, 2014
Soderbergh's black-and-white Raiders Of The Lost Ark


Rob Dean:

Over on his excellent website, Extension 765, Soderbergh has uploaded a black-and-white version of the 1981 blockbuster in an effort to prompt cinephiliacs to think about how an impressive talent like Spielberg was able to convey so much of the story merely through length and composition of shots. He also removed all sound from the video, instead replacing it with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’ score for The Social Network, so that viewers can solely focus on the staging of the film.

So this is what “retirement" is like for Soderbergh. (The end result, which you can watch on Soderbergh’s site is beautiful and sort of mesmerizing.)

September 23, 2014
Did people jump from the WTC towers on 9/11 because their rooms were on fire and they were about to be burned alive?


By: Catherine Beale, Quora

It was too hot.  

If you had been listening to the harrowing telephone messages left by the people who were trapped, with no way out, who made one last phone call to say goodbye — and no one answered — you would have heard them explain what they were about to do.
Some held hands with colleagues.  Some wrapped their arms around people they worked with, and they stepped together into the empty air.  Some went alone.  No one understood the fire.  No one understood why no one had come to save them. 
Their last words were unforgettable.  Their voices.  Their deep regret.  How calm some almost seemed.  One young guy left a message for his brother: I’m sorry we fought; I love you.
One left a message for his mother.  I love you, mom.  I’m sorry.
I don’t think anyone understood what was happening — a plane, an explosion, why they were left there, and could not be saved.  

Then for weeks, the recordings were played on the radio during New York City’s news coverage.
I had a friend who thought this public use of intimate, personal farewell messages was obscene.  I disagreed.  The tragedy of losing thousands of people so quickly in a single morning could be impersonally arms length, but for those voices.  
If desk phones weren’t working, they used cellphones.  The towers were built originally with helicopter landings.  Many had expected, of course, to be lifted off the roof.  There was no other way to get out.  Slowly, they began to realize it would soon be over.  They started to jump.  “I have to go,” said one, and hung up.
The towers hadn’t fallen yet.  No one knew that was going to happen.  This is why so many people died.

At the base, office workers from buildings on Broadway and Liberty and Chase Manhattan Plaza walked over and stood at the bottom and watched as people dropped in front of them.
I had a colleague named Tom whose young cousin worked in one tower.  He prayed she would appear, safe.  He walked over and stood next to a man who counted out loud each body as it hit the pavement.  26.  27.  28.  “It was so weird.”  She was never found.
For months, photos of the “Missing” were taped to walls by the people who loved them, all around Penn Station, on telephone poles, on the sides of buildings, lamp posts, pillars.  Every surface of New York was covered with these color xeroxes.  No one took them down.

Why did they jump?

There, on the roof, they waited as long as they could, until it was unbearably hot, and they simply could not stay there anymore.  They apologized for dying, said goodbye, and went.

September 23, 2014

These Vogue one-take interviews that have been popping up (here’s Anna Wintour) are this weird blend of awkwardness, half interesting half over-prepared answers, and semi-rehearsed acting. I end up watching them all til the end.

September 23, 2014
A Hubble telescope deep field image taken in 2012. The field of view, in human terms, is the diameter of a tennis ball that is 100 meters away. Almost every one of those objects is a galaxy. 

A Hubble telescope deep field image taken in 2012. The field of view, in human terms, is the diameter of a tennis ball that is 100 meters away. Almost every one of those objects is a galaxy. 

September 21, 2014

Pawel Kuczynski, 2014

September 21, 2014

What could go wrong?


What could go wrong?

(Source: brucesterling)

September 20, 2014

Chocolate bunny melting.

September 20, 2014

September 19, 2014

YouTube humor at its best. At least watch until the Hummers show up.

September 14, 2014

I was reminded of the well-known story of Alexander the Great and the Dervish who refused to prostrate himself as the King of Kings went by. Alexander sent for him and asked why he had failed to show respect. He answered:


"Then where is your army? There is no king without an army."


"Then where is your treasury? Every king has a treasury."


This story shows, in an exaggerated opposition, the two aspects of freedom: the freedom of having everything, and the freedom of wanting nothing.

— J.G. Bennett, from Gentry Magazine Number Eight, Fall 1953

September 13, 2014

Guy Overfelt

(Source:, via fletter)