VisitBritain.org Knows How to Make You Foreigners Comfortable

Britain’s tourism agency, VisitBritain, has come through with a list of handy stereo… I mean, tips, on how to handle the strange  foreign visitors that may stumble onto the shores of Airstrip One.  Choice cuts: Do not be alarmed if South Africans announce that they were held up by robots. To a South African the word robot means traffic lights. ‘’Takkies’’ means trainers, a barbecue is a ‘braai’, and ‘’howzit’’ is an informal way of saying hello. When in a social situation with a South African do not place your thumb between your forefinger and your second finger – it is an obscene gesture. … Avoid physical contact when first meeting someone from India. … Avoid saying ‘’thank you’’ to a Chinese compliment. Instead, politely deny a compliment to show humility. If you compliment a Chinese person, expect a denial in reply. The Chinese are famous for communicating by “Saying […]

Versus Ugly Infrastructure and Useless Monuments

Every reputable blog has been posting these amazing mockups for Choi and Shine Architects’ The Land of Giants project.   Such images instantly evoke that gut feeling of ‘why the hell haven’t we been doing this all along?’ The chronicle of the infrastructure achievements of the 20th century will surely include the phrase ‘done on the cheap’.  Whereas once public works were a canvas for artisans and a symbol of the munificence of the rulers who ordered their construction, rarely has something functional been built in the modern age that has been a delight to behold.  Functionality with minimal adornment has been the  norm, replacing craftsmen with workers and leaving the most grand and inspiring of plans on the drawing board or, at best, the pages of architecture journals. Bursts of public beauty can be found in the trend across cultures to invest in monuments, often in remembrance of people or […]

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Rip Off the Skateboarders From Hell

Dangerous Minds tipped me off to this particular piece of cinema history. (Oh, NSFW, by the way… there’s like, four nipples shown).  The trailer for Skateboarders from Hell is one piece of 1980’s Loose Shoes, a movie composed of genre spoofs filmed as trailers for nonexistent movies.  Kind of like a whole movie made out of the intermission of Grindhouse. What really grabbed me, though, was the motorized skateboarders these feral thrashers use to reach the podunk town they terrorize.  They give a quick closeup at about 0:19 in the video above.  They appear to be the lovechild of a weedwacker engine and a skateboard, complete with a handheld throttle and some kind of brake. Besides wracking my brains for a plan to make one, what struck me was the similarities to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle’s ride of choice: The Cheapskate.  (Image from Amazon) While the toy sports some […]

Dave Valentine’s £10,000 ($15,671) Crisp (Chip) Packet Collection

Dave Valentine loves crisps, or more specifically crisp packers from the 1980’s. Accoring to his 1980’s Crisp Packet group on Facebook he started the hobby as family was poor and he could not afford to collect the usual childhood staples. His parents encouraged him to “keep Britain tidy” and the net result is he has a £10,000 collection. Unlike stickers or trading cards, this hobby paid off. Does he plan on selling them? No. According to Children’s BBC (always a good source): Dave Valentine has more than 500 different packets which he holds on to after he’s eaten the snacks inside. Most of them you can’t buy any more, and they’ve been valued at thousands of pounds. But although they may be worth a small fortune but Dave says he’s not planning on selling them and wants to keep collecting even more! Those interested in crisps, package design, or 1980’s […]

Garfield: Suicide is Painless

And then my brain popped open, revealing a smaller brain that popped open, revealing another and so on, until it was the size of a pencil eraser, a talking pencil eraser, that said “Well then.  I quit.” More of this sort of thing here.  Obviously some sort of cult.

Every Japanese Corporate Mascot

Working as a nice little followup to our post on Brands of the World, Pink Tentacle has the scoop on the Japanese Figure Trademark Database. As you may or may not know, it’s damn near a requirement for any company operating in Japan to have some kind of cute cartoon mascot to front the business and appeal tot he inner six year old girl in all of us.  On occasion, these mascots may actually have something to do with the business’ method of acquiring black ink but often it’s just a weird-ass concoction from the witches brew of the company president’s sympathies, popular trends at the founding of the company and whatever acid is still floating around the heads of the marketing department. I myself spent a year and a half working for the company with the pink rabbit with the cape and the duck’s beak.  (The beak stood for […]

The Future is Now and Attached to Your Neck Like a Vise of Icy Comfort

Now this isn’t some kind of  blog where you come and ooh and the shiny bullshit that the machine keeps spurting out onto the shocked and adoring faces of the consuming, swollen masses. But… Well, I’ve spent half this goddamn summer completely incoherent, stumbling around the streets gibbering at the bodega men to hydrate me in a desperate attempt to cool down the internal temperature so as to birth a single thought that isn’t half boiled and wrung out of all meaning. ISN’T THIS WHAT WE WERE PROMISED??? SOME SORTA GEORGE JETSON WAY TO CONQUER THE CLIMATE AND SMILE OUR WAY THROUGH OUR INDIFFERENT SCORCHING OF THE PLANET??? I mean, just look at that chief!  He looks happy right?  Like some panting dog, cool and safe and digging that breeze those jet engines or whatever are blowing on his meaty all-American neck.  Seriously, it’s time we just admit it: our […]