Metatalktail Hour: idle wikipedia stroll April 11, 2020 5:50 PM   Subscribe

Happy weekend, Mefites! I'm in search of some nice things to idly think about that aren't in my immediate view. I'd like to see a wikipedia page you like, of something that isn't in your home.

As always this is just a conversation starter not a limiter; let us know how things are with you, what media are you enjoying, etc. Just no politics please.
posted by LobsterMitten to MetaFilter-Related at 5:50 PM (76 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

For a start I offer:

Moveable bridges. First of all moveable bridges are cool. Second of all this page has a kind of hypnotic set of little animations of all the different kinds of moveable bridges (like drawbridges etc).
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 5:52 PM on April 11 [8 favorites]


Many people are not aware that there is a full-size replica of the Parthenon in Nashville, TN. The article is really well done and talks about why it was built here.
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 6:00 PM on April 11 [9 favorites]


It looks like the original article on Wikipedia was removed/subsumed/edited down, but luckily, Wookiepedia has most of it, with bonus history, training, and move names. I give you several thousands of words on the 7 Styles of Lightsaber Combat, guaranteed to waste enrich several hours of your life.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:04 PM on April 11 [4 favorites]




The joke going around right now is "I finished Netflix!" I have put in a lot of screen time as well as Bible study and yesterday I made an easy and delicious banana bread. Lots of purging going on as well. Late next week I will learn whether I got the job I interviewed for this week. Hoping everyone is hanging in there!
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 6:07 PM on April 11 [7 favorites]


(grabs random book) tonight's reading...
Claude Levi-Strauss.

"And instead, during the brief intervals in which humanity can bear to interrupt it's hive-like labours, let us grasp the essence of what our species has been and still is, beyond thought and beneath society: an essence that may be vouchsafed to us in a mineral more beautiful than any work of Man; in the scent, more subtly evolved than our books, that lingers in the heart of a lily; or in the wink of an eye, heavy with patience, serenity, and mutual foregivness, that sometimes, through an invoultary understanding, one can exchange with a cat."

- Levi-Strauss.
posted by clavdivs at 6:24 PM on April 11 [10 favorites]


This is a pretty good illustration of the "Too Slow" variation of the high five. (with finger guns)
posted by bondcliff at 7:03 PM on April 11 [3 favorites]


I do a lot of stuff on Wikipedia, usually in the winter months, but the main thing is either write or help other people write small articles. I saw that Josh Kantor, the organist for the Red Sox, didn't have a picture on his page so I added one that I found and then contacted him on Twitter to see if he had a better one. He's a nice guy and we swapped a few messages. Then on Friday, a library professor I know was working on (coincidentally) an article for Matthew Kaminski the organist for the Atlanta Braves. Her article had gotten rejected by the Wikipedia nerds so I spent Friday night making it better, adding citations,making sure it met arcane notability requirements. She resubmitted it today and it made the cut. Hoorah!

Usually if I am on a Wikipedia random walk, I start with their List of Lists of Lists.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:50 PM on April 11 [24 favorites]


I was recently reading about this large-scale model of the Mississippi River basin, which I would have loved to visit and explore back when it was still working if only I'd known of it...and could have convinced my parents to take a very long road trip. Bonus drone fly-over video (just one of many on YouTube) - it's silent, so maybe cue up "Dark Side of the Moon" or something to play while you watch....
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:00 PM on April 11 [2 favorites]


So today I found a resting bumble bee in my strawberry pot with Pollen pants. Now. According to the wikipedia article I just linked the proper term is pollen basket- but come on. It has pollen pants.

I've been paying more attention to my various strawberries, since they seem to be the happiest in this period. The baby runner I had to repot was supposed to be a gift for any available mefite during my now aborted plant meet-up- so I guess in a few month a mefite is going to get not a baby strawberry- but a big boy. I also re-arranged an anise hyssop to sunnier pastures. I plum forgot to do an open thread for a couple of weeks because everything is terrible- so here's an open thread for all your plant talk needs- and instead of some houseplant the photo up top is the bumble bee with pollen pants, I'm sorry- a Pollen basket. It's been a weird day for wikipedia, besides looking up my weird bee friend, I'm also really into Helsinki. Which seems like a lovely city.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 8:23 PM on April 11 [7 favorites]


I can't decide which is a better user name, "the happiest strawberries" or "weird bee friend".
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:12 PM on April 11 [3 favorites]


Fun topic! My recent (well, discovered in the last year or so) favorite lists:

List of defunct. . .
Lists of fictional animals.
List of paradoxes.
List of people who have been pied.
List of civil unrest in the United States.
List of things named after Enrico Fermi.

The latest thing I stumbled across that I'm astonished I had never heard of before: The Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth.

A while back I invented something I call the elevator game. The goal is to think up a question for which a definite answer exists but is unknown to you before the elevator stops. Then you look up the answer on the bus. For example, "where did tamarind originate" or "how many nipples has a pig?" I've been trying to figure out how to make it work without the time limit of an elevator. Tooth brushing isn't bad, but it's a little bit too slow and ill-defined to create a sense of urgency. Five questions before the tea kettle boils sort of works, but five is a lot.
posted by eotvos at 9:16 PM on April 11 [6 favorites]


I love the stories of orcas outsmarting human attempts to thwart their fish thievery at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killer_whale#Intelligence.
posted by ktkt at 9:24 PM on April 11 [1 favorite]


Like LobsterMitten’s example, this includes a mesmerising animation.
Paternoster Lifts
If you want to learn more, there’s no shortage of hair-raising videos.
posted by The Patron Saint of Spices at 9:29 PM on April 11 [3 favorites]


I had a good conversation yesterday about the lists of best selling novels in the US by decade from the 1890s to the 2010s. Here is the main page for the lists. (Technically, some of these are in my house, hope that is ok.)
posted by paduasoy at 9:57 PM on April 11 [1 favorite]


Canal and river locks are pretty nifty. Considering that I'm not a boater, I've seen quite a few locks over the years. One of my favourites is this one and I would love love love to see this one some day. On a related note, narrowboats are boats that are designed for canals in the UK. They are also pretty nifty.
posted by ashbury at 9:58 PM on April 11 [4 favorites]


List of things named after Enrico Fermi.

They left out one of the most frequent usages, whenever your friend happens to hoist themselves up off the couch: "You gettin' a beer? Bring one fer mi!"
posted by Greg_Ace at 10:11 PM on April 11 [3 favorites]


Damn it, LobsterMitten, your topic crashed Wikipedia. We should probably stagger the Metafilter traffic in the future.

(All of wikimedia seems to be down at the moment, at least for me.)
posted by eotvos at 10:23 PM on April 11 [2 favorites]


Potoooooooo or Pot-8-os the horse, (1773-1800), showing that some dumb jokes are essentially eternal.
posted by frimble (staff) at 10:36 PM on April 11 [13 favorites]


Funicular - I don't know, I just like them.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 10:47 PM on April 11 [4 favorites]


My kids tease me that I am trying to read the internet cover to cover. So, they sent me this link. (It is probably an oldie but goodie, but I have never seen it before.)

These lists and lists of lists and lists of lists of lists and more lists are really setting me back in my efforts to go cover to cover.
posted by AugustWest at 12:36 AM on April 12 [1 favorite]


My favourite Wikipedia page is the page on breakfast. You might feel it's cheating, but very little of what is included on that page is in my home right now, alas.
posted by lollusc at 1:01 AM on April 12 [3 favorites]


Taking the topic sort of literally, the page for the Lignon du Forez, a river in east-central France, has a photo of the Chemins de l'Astrée--footpaths you can follow along the river to visit the scene of the early 17th C. novel, L'Astrée by Honoré d'Urfé. The French Wikipedia page for Lignon du Forez has more photos, and it looks like a wonderful place for a stroll. The novel though is long, mostly untranslated into English, and fairly difficult to follow, because it's one interrelated love story after another sort of ambling along at a slow pace, but for his final film, the New Wave director Éric Rohmer adapted the relatively simple frame story as the Romance of Astree and Celadon (see also Youtube). Incidentally, the pale green ribbons that Celadon wore in the novel may be the source for the name of the color celadon.
posted by Wobbuffet at 2:42 AM on April 12 [3 favorites]


Here's five:

* The timeline of the goat of some repute, which I've mentioned several times before, is my favourite thing on Wikipedia. I was there a few months ago, on the day it was inaugurated in case someone quickly burned it down (it survived - three years in a row, now).

* The Bodley's Librarian page is a good read from the perspective of how much librarians, through the ages, have liked to trash-talk each other.

* As I currently don't have a daily lesson from my barista in Stockholm, I'm using Wikipedia as the starting point to learn more about the cuisine of Sweden.

* There is a list of currently erupting volcanoes. I'm not really interested in it, as I don't live anywhere near one (and have no intention to). Whenever a friend or colleagues tweets or FB posts that the "news" says that a volcano is erupting and we are all doomed, I send this to him with a note that, at any time, there's always been volcanoes erupting.

* And an obscure one; the Kingdom of the Hwicce is where I'm from.

Today is a bit of an odd day, as it's the anniversary of when I won the major part of a deeply unpleasant legal dispute that rolled on for pretty much fifteen years. It's been an ... interesting ... year since then. But now, I'm finding myself surprisingly busy, especially as I'm starting a new and rather large writing project which overlaps with (hopefully) work. It should keep me quiet for a while.

Wishing good food, fortune, health, prospects and weather to all MeFites.
posted by Wordshore at 4:06 AM on April 12 [13 favorites]

List of fictional islands:

Below is a list of islands that have been invented for films, literature, television, or other media.
This page is one I recently discovered and it's a place you may lose hours in as you click through to other pages.

You have been warned. Enjoy.
posted by Fizz at 5:07 AM on April 12 [4 favorites]


I don't know or understand most of Wikipedia's rules, but it seems there's a (unwritten?) rule against "here's a bunch of pictures, just for funsies." Which is a shame, because when I'm reading up on something it's often helpful or just fun to see a bunch of representative pictures without having to use Wikimedia's not-so-great search.

But the article on carillons seems to have gotten past that rule, as it has a bunch of pictures just for funsies: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carillon#Gallery_of_notable_carillons. I check back every once in a while because I worry the one I added or the whole section will be deleted, but so far they're all still there.
posted by Tehhund at 5:10 AM on April 12 [2 favorites]


I'm flush with endorphins tonight. I managed my first 10km run since moving to Singapore. I was a little worried as I'd gone for a run on Friday night which was awful - the park was completely packed (exercising is the only frigging thing we're allowed to do atm), a bug flew in my eye, and due to my rationing my stomach meds and some cheese at lunch, the last 600 meters were spent mostly on trying to not have a very public accident (crisis averted! The fall-out once I got home was... painful).

But!! Today I went out earlier than Friday, I had no cheese for lunch, and it was good. It was still hotter (and more humid) than Satan's anus - there are no easy runs in Singapore - but this was... easier. Additionally, I saw a chonky monitor lizard and the paths were all but deserted (Singaporeans, I find, really hate going outdoors before about 5pm).

My gorgeous girls have been playing lego together like absolute bloody champions all day. Lockdown (or "circuit breaker" as they are terming it here to avoid people freaking out about lockdown....pft) has been stressful on everyone, but we are doing okay today.
posted by smoke at 5:13 AM on April 12 [9 favorites]


The UN has created two related lists that are guaranteed to take you down the rabbit hole, one is called the "Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity" and the other is the "List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding".

An item on the "intangible cultural heritage" list would be the art of building dry stone walls, for example. Other items are far more esoteric.

A random sampling:
  • The Lakalaka, Dances and Sung Speeches of Tonga
  • The Space of gong culture of Vietnam
  • Polyphonic singing of the Aka Pygmies of Central Africa
  • Almezmar, drumming and dancing with sticks in Saudi Arabia
  • Know-how of cultivating mastic on the island of Chios
  • The tugging rituals and games of Cambodia, Phillipines, South Korea and Vietnam
  • Shrimp fishing on horseback in Oostduinkerke, Belgium
  • The Maroon Heritage of Moore Town, Jamaica
  • The manufacture of cowbells in Portugal
Say goodbye to your Sunday!

(Just realized every single one of those sounds like a parody of a MeFi front page post, lol.)
posted by jeremias at 5:45 AM on April 12 [11 favorites]


Three of my favorites:

List of dumplings

Meromictic lakes


Maned wolf
posted by vers at 6:15 AM on April 12 [4 favorites]


Happy Bunny Day!! Did everyone collect all the eggs and craft all the recipes that Zipper tasked you to create? I DID NOT because I've been too busy trying to get Resident Services set up and all my house plots filled.

Anywho, Happy Bunny Day! to all my fellow Animal Crossing islanders!!
posted by Fizz at 6:16 AM on April 12 [2 favorites]


LobsterMitten: That submersible bridge animation FLOORED me! I'm 50 years old and I never once considered the possibility of a bridge simply... going INTO the water. It's such a simple idea.

Wikipedia can be such a time sink for me... I'll start reading about submersible bridges, and three hours later I'm still there reading about the early life of Stubby Kaye, or Japanese chef's knives.
posted by SoberHighland at 6:16 AM on April 12


I was recently reading about this large-scale model of the Mississippi River basin, which I would have loved to visit and explore back when it was still working if only I'd known of it

There is another.

(But you might want to hurry, as they’re talking about changing up Mud Island, and the model might not be there forever.)
posted by Huffy Puffy at 7:24 AM on April 12


The Wikipedia article on Disrupted Planets taught me one of the more disturbing words I know: Necroplanetology
posted by Eleven at 8:07 AM on April 12 [1 favorite]


I got all my Animal Crossing Bunny Day shit done! Can't wait for the day to roll over so that I can stop worrying about catching eggs instead of fish.

My Wikipedia article for the thread is kintsugi, the art of repairing broken pottery with gold (etc.) to honor the break as part of the history of the object, rather than something to disguise. It's something I learned about soon after I stayed at a ryokan in Japan that served me a plate with a small golden repair that charmed and confused me. The concept of kintsugi is something I've really come to appreciate as I get older, even when I think about my own personal and professional mistakes. (Not that I gild my errors, but more and more I realize they are opportunities to create something stronger and more beautiful.)
posted by phatkitten at 8:15 AM on April 12 [8 favorites]


X-post from the "fucking fuck" thread, one of my dogs was attacked Friday. As of this morning he's healing up as expected, but is still at the hospital and not out of the woods yet. It was awful, and that trauma on top of the constant low-level Covid anxiety is a lot to deal with. Overall I'm ok. My left hand was chomped in the melee and I'm a little worried about the puncture wounds, but so far so good. I could use a hug -- I'm glad my other dog, Figlet, is a good snuggler. One amazing thing that surprised me is that my community is SO invested in the story of this little dog, and is sending over so much love.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 8:17 AM on April 12 [7 favorites]


Happy Bunny Day! Instead of crafting any egg stuff, I just laid out all my eggs on the ground to form a vast Egg Plaza for the bunny man to gaze upon, a single tear slowly rolling down his face (if he can even cry).

In real life crafting, I got some seeds started to plant on my not very sunny balcony.
posted by moonmilk at 8:18 AM on April 12 [5 favorites]


I recently made a Projects post about a browser game that uses the Wikipedia API, and listed a few articles I came across while making it. My favourite is Silbo Gomero, a whistle-based language from the Canary Islands.
posted by oulipian at 8:39 AM on April 12 [4 favorites]


I've had this center of origin page saved for a long time; it details the world centers of origins for cultivated plants. I keep meaning to write a food history article from the perspective of designing a menu based on what's available this century/continent.....if my constant anxiety & stress can be managed long enough to focus. Big Thanks to everyone in this thread for providing me more distraction/inspiration links!
posted by winesong at 9:46 AM on April 12 [1 favorite]


Sorry I'm not answering the question at hand, but I finally tested my secret sauce ideas from this comment a couple of weeks ago. I don't think anyone cares, but at least you guys, unlike my wife, can't tell me how little you care until after, so I'm going to tell you how it went.

Overall, I was shocked. The sauces I liked most on their own fared poorly when mixed with Catalina, but the winner was a sauce I refuse to eat on its own (Ranch) because I find it so unpalatable. In fact, I didn't even buy a bottle of Ranch dressing; I bought a 50 cent packet of it from a closed salad bar. The full results:

1. Ranch dressing. I'm glad I included it, because I actually looked forward to each taste of this one. It had an almost bubbly mouthfeel and was the only one with the zing I was looking for.

2. Mayonnaise. This was perfectly acceptable, but lacked the wow factor.

3. Miracle Whip. The Miracle Whip taste was overpowering. I had to double the amount of Catalina. With the extra Catalina, it tasted pretty good, maybe even slightly better than the mayo, but I'm docking points because one of the objectives was that the sauce be simple to make. I don't want to have to measure my ingredients, just squirt some things into a ramekin and stir.

4. Horseradish. This also had an overwhelming taste - who could have foreseen that? I like horseradish, so it wasn't bad, but it just tasted like flavored horseradish. I was hoping the finished product would be more than the sum of its parts.

I'd eat any of the above again. I can't say the same for:

5. Blue cheese dressing. Like the last two, the taste was too noticeable. Unlike those two, though, it wasn't a harmonious pairing. I LOVE blue cheese, and blue cheese plus buffalo sauce is a classic, but this was foul.

6. Plain Greek yogurt. Emphasis on plain. Solo Catalina would have been more flavorful. The yogurt actually subtracted flavor.

7. Sour cream. OMG YUCK. I had high hopes, because flavored sour cream is one of my favorite DIY condiments (it's the other secret sauce in my previous comment). But I literally gagged when I tasted this, and I could barely bring myself to taste it a second time. Utter failure.

I'm happy with how things turned out. My goal was to find something similar to Steak n Shake's Frisco sauce without just ripping off the Frisco sauce recipe, and I think I did that. Now that I have my winner, I'm going to play around with adding some seasoning (garlic? Worcestershire sauce? Frank's Red Hot?), and make some burgers this week.

Methodological note: Each sauce (except the Miracle Whip) was combined in a 1:1 ratio with Kraft Zesty Catalina dressing in its own ramekin. I cycled through each at least three times, each time in a different order, and then cycled through the leaders again. I had a palate cleanser of, ahem, Capri Sun. Don't laugh.
posted by kevinbelt at 10:07 AM on April 12 [12 favorites]


Many people are not aware that there is a full-size replica of the Parthenon in Nashville, TN.

I certainly did not.

"They say of central Nashville, where the Parthenon is..."
posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:23 AM on April 12 [6 favorites]


Kevinbelt, are you familiar with the Catalina Hamburger? The Joe Beef guys do a version with a homemade version of Catalina. If you dig Catalina it might appeal.

I chanced upon the wikipedia entry for Princess Caraboo and did a deep dive into the entries on other fraudulent royals. And of course that led me to, as these things always seem to, various Catholic controversies.
posted by Ashwagandha at 11:19 AM on April 12 [2 favorites]


I've always liked this List of fractals by Hausdorff dimension mostly because it's a nice list of fractals including broccoli and cauliflower (Hausdorff dim 2.7 and 2.8, respectively). ¡Felices Pascuas Metafilter!
posted by bluefly at 1:23 PM on April 12 [3 favorites]


It's not quite Wikipedia, but along similar lines, I recently finished another read-through of the Space section on Yarchive.net. The site is a curated archive of some old newsgroup postings that were of interest to the curator, Norman Yarvin. It's been the subject of FPPs on Metafilter at least a couple of times, though at this point has not been updated in nearly a decade. There's still some interesting reading on there, though my impressions of some of the personalities involved are, shall we say, less favorable than they used to be? I credit/blame Metafilter for a lot of that change in point of view. Anyway, the technical stuff is still relevant and fascinating.
posted by FishBike at 2:08 PM on April 12 [2 favorites]


I spent way too much time clicking around in the time measurement systems category.
posted by ouke at 3:07 PM on April 12


A reminder that things have always been falling apart...

List of structural failures and collapses
posted by gwint at 3:13 PM on April 12 [1 favorite]


Oh boy, my blog (link in profile) could lead you down a different Wikipedia rabbit hole every day - for the last 412 days. Some of my personal favourite Wiki topics:
The light bulb conspiracy
Olympic medals for architecture
Elections in North Korea
Dead rabbit pregnancy test
Hobo News
Ghost murder
posted by Paragon at 3:26 PM on April 12 [3 favorites]


List of kennings

Wave-swine = ship
Whale-road = sea
Honour = mind's worth
posted by Pallas Athena at 3:32 PM on April 12 [6 favorites]


List of Homeric epithets

Wine-dark sea
Rosy-fingered dawn
Horse-taming Trojans
Long-skirted Helen
posted by Pallas Athena at 3:38 PM on April 12 [2 favorites]


I always put these in Wikipedia threads just in case people haven't seen them.

Citation Needed, from the Technical Difficulties and
Two Of These People Are Lying.

Interesting Wikipedia articles presented in a hilarious (YMMV) way.
posted by zengargoyle at 4:00 PM on April 12 [2 favorites]


I just made the infamous pea guacamole from the New York Times (actually from Melissa Clark's book Dinner), and it was great? I forgot that everyone here got so mad about it. I am from Texas, and I would make it again.
posted by purpleclover at 4:47 PM on April 12 [2 favorites]


My botanic garden just posted a virtual walk through their Japanese garden.
posted by ferret branca at 5:57 PM on April 12 [2 favorites]


Moveable bridges. First of all moveable bridges are cool.

The animations are cute but incomplete, just wanted to add one I'd never heard of before, the Fort Point bridge in Boston. It slides at an angle. Do not know if it's active, and can not find an image of it open. The best photo that I can see from a quick search is this book on amazon. Walking across there it's very clear there is a diagonal gap between sections. Badly want to be there if it's ever opened again.
posted by sammyo at 6:08 AM on April 13 [1 favorite]


When I'm in the mood for this type of stroll instead of Wikipedia I turn to Namuwiki - it's a Korean-language wiki that is very comprehensive on subculture (or Otaku) interests, and surprisingly deep on Korean culture and history topics. Wikipedia entry on Namuwiki.

As can be surmised from the Wikipedia description, Namuwiki has to be approached with a critical eye and a sense of humor. So it's not a source I would recommend to folks seeking authoritative information, especially for unfamiliar topics, but it's definitely great for some entertaining time-wasting.
posted by needled at 9:44 AM on April 13 [4 favorites]


I like the List of Cryptids.
posted by phunniemee at 10:10 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


We just spent the morning exploring follies.
posted by Grandysaur at 10:20 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


rather be jorting, somehow that is not the first time I have clicked on the blood circle article???

My offering is not a wiki page, but rather this page on the California Newt, which is where I went several years ago after visiting the UC Berkeley botanic gardens during newt mating season.

So much information about morphological changes during breeding season! Amplexus! Vernal pools! Nuptial pads on the toes!

On Saturday while out on a family nature walk, I found and handled an eastern rat snake. Never having picked one up before, I thought for a minute I had stepped in the poop of a sick animal - but no, that is the musk they give off when they want you to drop them. I had to wash my coat and sweatshirt when we got home. Worth it, though, to give my kid her first experience of touching a live snake. Garter snakes (my standard catch, growing up) are not nearly as stinky. But it was also weirdly docile and did not even try to bite.

We also caught several hefty and rather bovine tadpoles and a caddis fly larva, in its home made of sticks and algae. My kid got bitten surprisingly painfully by what I think was a dragonfly larva. 4 year olds do not generally speaking listen to their moms about being gentle with creatures, but maybe this will persuade her.

In a tree next to our house lives a barred owl or possibly a pair. It certainly sounds like two of them when they chuckle madly in the evenings, but we only ever see one. I am surprised how active it is during the day - we've had some very good sightings. Today it was on a fallen tree and my partner thought at first it was a cat, until it flew up to perch on a low branch.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 10:23 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]




Wordshore, I loved the goat page, especially this bit:
Over the following seven years there were no further attempts on the world record, but there was some hostility between the Natural Science Club and the Southern Merchants, evidenced by the fact that the Natural Science Club put up a sign near their goat wishing a Merry Christmas to everyone, except the Southern Merchants.
Also: I'm glad you have a writing project, but I'm hoping it doesn't keep you TOO quiet. I love hearing from you here, when you feel like popping in.
posted by kristi at 12:54 PM on April 13 [2 favorites]


Oulipians Big Deal or No Big Deal wikipedia web game has been providing me with amusement on and off for a few weeks now. I like to look up the (relatively) Big Deal things I haven't heard of before.

My scoring records is currently around $4M for Liam Neeson.
posted by jacquilynne at 2:57 PM on April 13 [2 favorites]


My dog was able to come home today, wrapped up like an Easter egg. He's on 5 different meds and is very groggy, but overall doing great. We get the drains out on Weds and stitches out next week. He is a great dog, and tough as nails. Not many small dogs would survive a chomp to the torso from a dog over 4x their size. (Also, he's incredibly lucky -- the vet said the surgery was really difficult. Although the internal organs were all ok, the muscle was torn up so bad there wasn't a lot to put back together.)
posted by Sparky Buttons at 3:30 PM on April 13 [18 favorites]


You may already know this, but this link:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random

will take you to a new, random article every time you click on it. Not guaranteed to be optimistic, mind you, but it can be fun.
posted by WCityMike at 6:02 PM on April 13


the page for Donovan's Hurdy Gurdy Man never ceases to amuse me, particularly the Musicians For The Song section which stands as documented proof that it's true what they say, "If you remember the 1960s, you weren't there."
posted by philip-random at 9:09 AM on April 14 [1 favorite]


In case you doubt that stoners can achieve great things.

Runners Up:
The Dyatlov Pass Incident
The General Motors streetcar conspiracy
posted by rhizome at 9:33 AM on April 14 [2 favorites]


My perennial favourite page of this kind is the page on Whalebacks. Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately) I do not have one in my house. Not even a small one.
posted by Chairboy at 3:28 PM on April 14 [1 favorite]


Ashcan School.
posted by clavdivs at 3:38 PM on April 14 [1 favorite]


I've been reading about https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shikoku_Pilgrimage today.

I decided that when all of this is over with? I'm actually gonna visit Japan, which I've wanted to do for eons now, but just never got around to doing. I don't know if I'm going to do this entire pilgrimage - or even part of it - but it's something I can at least research!

I also did my part to help the USPS by buying this awesome looking backpack: https://store.usps.com/store/product/stamp-gifts/upcycled-crimson-showdown-mailbag-P_842955. Because all the restaurants have been closed, I've been pushing myself to do more cooking at home - and I have perfected a vaguely decent, nutritious ramen recipe that I don't mind eating every day. This week, I'm making miso ramen with cannellini beans, mung sprouts, and cauliflower. I've also been saving a LOT of $$ by eating in, which I can throw at charities, and the Post Office for that neato backpack. My own little piece of Americana.
posted by spinifex23 at 4:50 PM on April 14 [3 favorites]


A couple months ago I started with the page on Physical Cosmology. I am not a math or science girl, so when I got to a linked term I was unfamiliar with, I'd open that up and it's related articles until I felt I understood the term, then kept reading the main article.

It sounds simple enough but I'm only about halfway through the article with all the linked terms and the subsequent linked articles on those pages. It turns out cosmology is a pretty dense subject to study.

I dont know exactly why I started in on it. Maybe because the shape and nature of the universe has always interested me, but my dyscalculia has made a lot of my interests very challenging to get into. I am determined to get my head around the basics though, and maybe take up an online course. The universe is endlessly weird and fascinating.
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 5:31 PM on April 14 [3 favorites]


Haptic Poetry
posted by thatwhichfalls at 5:47 PM on April 14 [2 favorites]


It's funny -- not long after I joined Metafilter nearly nineteen years ago, I got a temp job at Getty Images working on an experimental project in the former lobby of a vintage bank in downtown Seattle. It was full of people staring at old school monitors who were applying terms of emotion tags to copyright free photos.

I think the project was a failure -- it was free form apply whatever word came to mind rather than choose from a set list of generic terms. A lot of us had large vocabularies. I am sure that as a long time Jack Vance reader I certainly helped to sink that ship. Rhodomontade anyone ?

This came to mind because this morning I ran across a Photobucket account which I started back then to save a couple of images I found on that job. One of them I entitled Joey in a Doorway.

God, I love that picture. And I used to know the name of the photographer and remembered several other pictures of the same joey. But that was nearly twenty years ago and his name has been long forgotten to me. Which I sadly regret. Forgetting things is one of the worst parts of growing old.

I mention all this because I am thinking the herd mind herein or at least the Ozzie contingent hereof -- I'm looking at you, Joe in Australia! -- might have a clue as to who took that picture of that Joey.

Oh, and by the way, this all also led to me finding one of my first deletions, engendered by this callout.

And, man, seeing all those long gone but well remembered names -- crunchland, Frasermoo, Mack Twain, MiguelCardoso, stavrosthewonderchicken and y6y6y6 among others -- did little to lift my mood. But then biscotti, cortex, mathowie, Smart Dalek, soundsofsuburbia and tsdimukes, to name but a few, are still with us to one extent or another. So there is that.

God, it is so embarrassing to read some of the things I've said over the years. Not to mention over the past few days. *sigh*
posted by y2karl at 1:33 AM on April 15 [4 favorites]


Mods - could this thread make it over to the sidebar? There is so much in here that I have been (and will continue to) explore!
posted by sundrop at 6:47 AM on April 15 [1 favorite]


I still find myself looking at the entry for Radio Antennas, in part because the animations help explain how they work in very simple terms. You'd think, as a ham, I'd have all this memorized or something but no.
posted by jquinby at 11:07 AM on April 15 [2 favorites]


I don't recognise the Joey in a Doorway picture. It's a very young joey, and I'm surprised to see it out of its mother's pouch, especially standing on what appears to be a wooden porch. The door looks too rough to belong to a house. Perhaps the photo was taken at an animal shelter?

The resolution isn't great and I'm not a photographer, but the shallow depth of field that just manages to take in the grain of the wood on the door makes me think that it was taken by someone with decent kit. The lack of fill flash, and the way way the line of the lower bar on the door inconveniently cuts across the shadow on the joey makes it look like an impromptu shot. You'd think a newspaper photographer would have done better, but maybe it's one of their rejects? Or just someone with a good camera, back in the old days, who knew how to properly calculate depth of field.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:23 AM on April 16


Recently I made a search for flatfile forums (as in 'flatfile' anything, really) I could stick on a portable webserver and I wasn't able to find anything new. And in any case I already have something -- I just once in a while keep looking for another, out of some compulsion. I don't really use it as a forum so much as I use it as an additional way to organise my thoughts. It's, um, kind of like reading scattershot.

...I don't know why I felt like mentioning that (as in, something that random). Things have been ... okay, I guess. I don't really know what to do with myself online. It's easier to read. I tried thinking of a Wikipedia article and all I could think of off the top of my head was a page for a video game series I'm really into right now, but I think I'll link to this neat thing Sega made instead (not Wikipedia, but still a link to a wiki).

But speaking of video games, I've been playing the new Animal Crossing. A tent is what your player character starts with before they get a house; I think it was like that in the previous game as well. I can't help but wish I could expand the tent rather than get a house -- there's just something charming about the way it wraps around the player character's living space when they're inside it. I suppose I could get similarly-coloured or -textured wallpaper but it isn't quite the same.

It's kind of counter-intuitive, but I haven't upgraded from the tent yet. I wanted to see how far along I could get by without a house on this particular player character. I did make a secondary player character to see what a house looked like in New Horizons, as well as what sort of perks that may have come with it. It's some hammerspace storage and access to a higher tier of special points the game allows you to collect (Miles). I'm thinking I might make a third character who I'll never play as just to, well, to keep a tent around. Because there are definitely limitations to the gameplay at the tent stage of personal housing. And doing that on the character whose living status affects the progress of the island's development kind of wasn't too smart, but ... there was still stuff to do, so it wasn't like it was wholly unplayable. I could also theoretically redeem a Miles+ ticket on my second character and pass it along to my first so they could go on the Mystery island tour. Though I haven't tried that yet.

Also, the products that can be redeemed for (non- +) Miles sell for about 5 bells per point (and this is consistent. Nothing sells for more or less, if my spreadsheet is working correctly). I'm not sure I wanted to know this. I've been selling Nook's very own wooden floors to his nephew ever since. ...well, most of this has probably been worked out well in advance of me getting there myself by others.

I guess it's nice to ramble sometimes. Um ... yeah. Incidentally, I don't know how many times I've seen Nook announce, at the start of a new day: "Would you believe it? Today's news...is that there isn't any news!" and variants thereof, broken up by birthdays and Bunny Day. Oh -- I don't have access to any fishing tournament stuff. That's not seasonal, is it?
posted by redrawturtle at 7:00 AM on April 16


Receptive_aphasia.

It was warm, so I tilled the garden and planted seeds for greens - kale, chard, mesclun mix, spinach, arugula, and some peas. Parsley and cilantro in a pot. Then it got cold again. I covered the garden on a couple cold nights. I am craving greens and herbs pretty hard. It'll be a while.
posted by theora55 at 8:57 AM on April 16


I don't recognise the Joey in a Doorway picture. It's a very young joey, and I'm surprised to see it out of its mother's pouch, especially standing on what appears to be a wooden porch

Thank you, Joe in Australia! You were most informative.

Well, as I said, I seem to recall finding that picture online and a few more of that Joey hopping about a rather rough wooden porch. As well as the name of the photographer. But it's been so long and perhaps I am recalling a fragment of dream.
posted by y2karl at 1:43 PM on April 16


I find the Lamest Wikipedia Edit Wars page hilarious. Your mileage may vary.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Lamest_edit_wars
posted by PaulVario at 12:07 PM on April 18 [4 favorites]


« Older Bookshop vs Amazon   |   What's eatin', you? Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments