Posts Tagged ‘humor’
Great minds thinking alike? The power of the zeitgeist? The herd instinct at work?… Browse through Twin Movies (uncomfortably-similar films released in the same year) to decide for yourself.
As we head for the art house, we might recall that it was on this date in 1906 that a perky Norwegian nurse greeted her charge with “Our patient is feeling much better today.” Playwright Henrik Ibsen ( Brand, Peer Gynt, An Enemy of the People, A Doll’s House, Hedda Gabler, Ghosts, The Wild Duck, and The Master Builder, among others) replied “On the contrary!” and passed away.
Readers struggling with an appropriate response to the U.N.’s recent suggestion that all of us in the developed world should be getting much more of our protein from eating insects will be relieved to know of the brainchild of four London-based graduate students, the Ento Box…
What began as a graduate project has matured over the past two years, with a series of caterings and pop-up restaurants introducing insect-based dishes to new audiences around the U.K. Just before Easter, the founders of Ento (which is a portmanteau of bento box and entomology) served buffalo caterpillars at the Edinburgh Science Festival, the largest event they’ve participated in so far. They want Ento to grow organically–with more supper clubs this year and a restaurant in about 18 months. Slow growth allows them to see firsthand how the food is received, to understand their customers, and to build up good will en route to hitting supermarket shelves in a few years. Before mass consumption of insects can become a first-world reality, you need to fix the perception problem. With a nod to the aesthetics of sushi presentation, that’s precisely what Ento does…
“Sushi was a very inspiring story for us,” says cofounder Julene Aguirre-Bielschowsky, who met her cofounders at the Innovation Design Engineering MA/MSc double masters course at the Royal College of Art and Imperial College London. Aguirre-Bielschowski, who is German but is originally from Mexico, says she and her colleagues were initially met with skepticism from advisors, but she says they found inspiration in a 30-year-old Japanese travel book that advised tourists to beware of “strange Japanese restaurants that serve raw fish.”
If sushi could make fans out of skeptics in just three decades, then why not bugs?…
Read all of the appetizing tale at CoExist.
As we struggle with our chop sticks, we might recall that it was on this date in 1955 that George B. Hansburg of Walker Valley, N.Y. was issued a U.S. patent for his invention of an improved pogo stick (No. 2,793,036). In the event, while the design was a step forward over earlier incarnation, Hansburg’s 1955 version posed something of a risk to the user’s chin. He went back to the drawing board and two years later patented something much more like the pogo stick we’ve come to know and love.
There’s a boxing ring planted in the middle of a London nightclub.
So far, nothing too out of the ordinary. But there’s also a folding table in the center of the ring, and on it, a chessboard. And rather than gloving up to start sparring, the two boxers, hands wrapped, sit down to square off over the board. Because this isn’t regular boxing—it’s chessboxing.
Chessboxing is a hybrid sport that is exactly what it sounds like: Chess plus boxing, or, more specifically, a round of chess followed by a round of boxing, repeated until someone comes out the victor. As Tim Woolgar, founder of London Chessboxing, says, “If you know how to play chess and you know how to box, you know how to chessbox”…
Get the dope at “TKO By Checkmate: Inside the World of Chessboxing.”
As we roll on the ropes, we might recall that it was on this date in 1926 that Thomas Alva Edison opined that “Americans prefer silent movies over talkies.”
More than 170 years before Jean-François Champollion had the first real success in translating Egyptian hieroglyphs, the 17th century Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher was convinced he had cracked it. He was very wrong. Daniel Stolzenberg looks at Kircher’s Egyptian Oedipus, a book that has been called “one of the most learned monstrosities of all times” in Public Domain Review.
As we take care not to jump to conclusions, we might send thoughtful birthday greetings to Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell; he was born on this date in 1872. A philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, and social critic, Russell is probably best remembered for Principia Mathematica (co-authored with Alfred North Whitehead), which attempted to ground mathematics in logic (though his essay “On Denoting” has also been celebrated as a “paradigm of philosophy.” He won the 1950 Nobel Prize in Literature ”in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.”