Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween/Samhain, everyone!

What makes music scary? Some of the reasons are technical, while others are contextual. Shades of both can be found in “Music for the Zombie Apocalypse,” which looks like fun. (The album, that is, not the zombie apocalypse.)

Haunted houses are another perennial attraction. The Atlantic has a lovely slideshow of feature films starring spooky houses.

The Cthulhu mythos as imagined by kids. Really, what more needs to be said?

If you’re still looking for costume inspiration (or if you’re just spooked out and are looking for something different), the Victoria & Albert Museum is running an exhibit all about postmodernism during the 1970-1990 era. Also at the V&A is a fantastic exhibit featuring the clothes and style of Annie Lennox. Who knew the crazy kids would end up so respected?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Happy Friday, everyone! Many thanks for reading and sending links.

From Julie: As the world’s population hits seven billion, see where you rank. According to these calculations, there weren’t even four billion people on the planet when I was born. Hey, you three billion kids! Get off my lawn!

Also from Julie: the Royal Society’s historical journals are now available online for free; previously unseen art by J.R.R. Tolkien is going to be published; and ten crime authors are competing for the prize of...having a morgue named after them.

From Chuck via Cassandra: Halloween and the law!

From Cassandra: some science behind a haunting; the wonderful dissolute world of the 1880s; and the problem facing men in these parlous times.

From Bunny: human jelly babies! Not really, but gelatin from human DNA is becoming more widespread.

Have a safe and spiffy weekend, everyone! See you next week. An update to our giveaway contest will be posted soon, too.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Take a moment this Halloween season to consider that the white-collar workers of the world are comparable to zombies. (Insert joke about brains, or the lack thereof, here.)

Also, Bill Lucey has a terrific roundup of popular Halloween costumes this year.

Another Occupy movement library is up and running! Boston’s library has its own wiki and much more.

In headier economic times, I got to go to the Internet Librarian conference. I’m not doing that these days, but the conference is still going strong, and Gary Price’s presentation on new and interesting beta sites is inspiring.

And finally, Flavorwire has a great gallery of portraits of authors when they were young.

Tomorrow: links from others, and our final giveaway contest!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Psst, more giveaway fodder over at the Steampunk Librarian!
Hey, it turns out that goths are happy, secure, and aging quite nicely! See, Mom, there was never anything to worry about.

Halloween brings all sorts of lovely things, such as All Hallows Read (with intro by Neil Gaiman), ShellHawk’s Nest’s collection of true ghost stories and more, and the New York Halloween Dog Parade! (There is a Lady Gaga costume in the slideshow, of course. Also Gandhi. And Dave Mustaine. And more!)

If you’re looking for ghosts or haunted houses in the Chicago area, a new website locates all the abandoned buildings in the metro area. I’m just saying.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Today is not only my wedding anniversary, it’s also the second anniversary of Beyond Victoriana! They’re having a giveaway over there to celebrate. Our own giveaway continues; look for more this week!

A transatlantic steampunk convention may be in the works; if you’re interested, join in the conversation!

Closer to Steampunk Librarian HQ, Pandora Promotions is steaming along with several events. It’s not too early to mark your calendars.

Has anyone seen the steampunked-up Three Musketeers film? I'm thinking it may be a guilty pleasure sort of viewing experience for me.

And finally, a bridge built in Victorian times is going solar, and will provide energy to a new Blackfriars rail station. How awesome is that?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Happy Monday!

My mom sent this article and video about Arlo Guthrie and Pete Seeger going down to the Occupy Wall Street protest. Woohoo!

Graffiti is both art and political expression, especially in places where the latter is frowned upon. A look at 2011’s events in graffiti tell thousands of words, but there’s an accompanying article as well.

Andy Warhol’s love of media is exhibited in a new showing at the National Gallery of Art. I think Andy would have loved social media.

Ben Jonson may have been the first literary celebrity, at least in England.

And finally, for the spooky: a gorgeous Victorian haunted house, in LEGO!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Happy Friday! Thanks to everyone who sent in links and everyone who reads this goofy little corner of the interweb. It's much appreciated.

From Julie: one of John Lennon’s teeth is to be auctioned off. This leads to all sorts of strange questions and ideas.

Also from Julie: the British Library’s catalog has links to Amazon, which has irked some people (UK booksellers, namely).

From Cassandra: Viva la difference!

Also from Cassandra: a new insight into ancient Egypt’s mummification process.

From Bunny: Mizerella’s spooky arts and crafts – excellent inspiration for the Halloween season!

Have a spiffy (and safe) weekend, everyone! See you Monday.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

We’re giving away another book over at the Steampunk Librarian! This one is all about Doc Holliday and Billy the Kid. Also Edison. And shamans. And more.

Did you know that the Occupy Wall Street movement has its own library right on site? It’s true, and if you’re a librarian, you can help out if you’re so inclined.

Meanwhile, in California, Governor Brown signed a bill restricting the privatization of libraries. This is a simmering topic in the library world and it might heat up significantly.

This week’s “what will the world be like without libraries?” story comes from the UK. (I don’t mean that to sound cynical; stories like this abound in the news these days, unfortunately.)

In peppier news, why not peruse the Dictionary of the Absurd? Or virtually visit the Potato Museum?

And finally, it’s World Series season! The New York Times has a really nifty article about the history of the programs handed out at the Fall Classic.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Halloween is almost upon us, hooray! Here are some bonus spooky links sent in by others to start today’s post.

Bunny provides some costume ideas. I’m thinking I might be able to pull off the Virginia Woolf concept.

Cassandra sends in a helpful flowchart to determine if you’re dating a vampire. Hey, it’s good to know these things.

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, makers of spooky-themed perfumes, has a new line based on Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s classic Good Omens.

This weekend, you can go to Ice Age Archaeology Day in Seattle, or see the Hooker Day parade in Hartford! (Actual ice ages and/or hookers will not be far as I know, at least.)

Oh, and the world's also supposed to end on Friday. I would say something snarky, but as the world news is increasingly chaotic and people seem to be dying unexpectedly at a rapid rate over the past month or so,  we shall just hunker down and hope for the best. Right?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Are you participating in our fall book giveaway? You should be! More books are on the way; you can enter for one or all of them.

David Malki! is having a contest, too – be classy, take a photo of yourself, and join the fun! (Actual cash prizes, too!)

For the super classy steampunk type, consider this incredible music box crafted by Swiss watchmakers. It’s beautiful, plays 19th century music, and is insanely expensive.

No money is needed to enjoy Slate’s series on this treasure trove of photos and report cards from the Manhattan Trade School for Girls, curated by Paul Lukas (you may recognize the name from Uni Watch, another great website). If Slate’s page gives you problems, there’s now a website for the project, too.

My other half (aka the voice of Sir Reginald) contributed two great links today – one looks at the diseases of the beloved computer game Oregon Trail, the other is a video of the future as it may be, with the help of magnets. (Levitation! It’s not that far away!)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Another giveaway contest is up over at the Steampunk Librarian. Go and see!

But first: the latest news on Vincent van Gogh suggests that perhaps he did not die by suicide, but was instead shot by some teenagers. Sounds very modern, doesn’t it? (Also, if this turns out to be the case, that means that last season’s episode of Doctor Who is all kinds of messed up. Anyway.)

I have decided that if America gets too carried away, I will aim to move to Brazil and become part of Inhotim, a contemporary arts park just getting started. It looks gorgeous and escapist!

More pragmatically, I’m also impressed by efforts in Seattle to create  an energy self-sufficient building, and hope it’s the first of many innovations in the worlds of energy and architecture.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Happy Friday!

Bunny sent me a tutorial on housing feral cats, news of a “Kraken” discovery, and a detailed map of H.P. Lovecraft’s Dreamlands. I suspect all three are connected somehow.

My mom sent a link to Transition Culture, which is incredibly interesting and timely.

And we end with a parody of the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo movie trailer, starring the Muppets!

Have a safe and spiffy weekend, everyone. More contest entries may appear over at the Steampunk Librarian, and I’ll post here if/when they do.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Here’s a little something for almost everyone.

If you like Egyptian history, you can help transcribe papyrus scrolls! Crowdsourcing is a wonderful thing.

If you’re into the art of the book, check out Facsimile Dust Jackets for a huge gallery.

If alchemy intrigues you, the Lloyd Library right here in Cincinnati is running an entire exhibit!

And if you want to see smart, sexy men, there’s a calendar just for you -- Men of the Stacks. (The calendar also benefits the It Gets Better project.)

Two New York Times articles finish today’s post. The first discusses Baryshnikov’s archives which are en route to the New York Public Library; the other excerpts passages from Spalding Gray’s journals, which will soon be published.

Tomorrow: links from others!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I’m a little late, but it’s the season of Halloween, so get thee to Countdown to Halloween and the Halloween Forum! The latter provides endless resources for decorating and entertaining (and scaring); the former is a group project which is spooky, stellar, and serves as an introduction to many great sites. I just discovered Redecorating Middle-Earth in Early Lovecraft and am loving it.

Also discovered: the genre of quilts made from grave rubbings. Wow, I had no idea.

If you are not into the spooky stuff, consider the Woolly Worm festival this weekend, in which caterpillars will predict the winter! Maybe.

Also, the steampunk giveaway has begun; the first one up for grabs is George Mann’s Ghosts of War.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

It's book giveaway time! Separate entries will be posted over at the Steampunk Librarian website, so you can enter and get some free books. Hooray!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Today's a bit international.

You can watch silent films from London, for instance.

Irish dancing is good for you, but the associated crazy wigs and extensions are, unsurprisingly, probably not so good.

Crystal skulls are now thought to be the creation of German artists. Does Indiana Jones know about this?

A friend died over the weekend; he was the person who introduced me to The National, and here's a song by them. Go hug your friends.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Well, that was a week. I'm back and healthier, but the website managed to get sick too. (It's fixed now, despite any warnings you may still be getting; the warnings should disappear shortly.) On to links, then...

The Occupy Wall Street movement is gathering steam at a rapid rate; here's a map of what's going on where. Holly also sent a great summary of the "Occupy Sesame Street" meme that's going around Twitter (you can check for more updates, too!).

Also from Holly: a changing station like no other. Hee.

From Cassandra: a proud progressive hillbilly's take on current world problems. Definitely worth a read.

Also from Cassandra: the secret life of pronouns. Sounds scandalous, doesn't it?

From Julie: it's not too early to begin preparations for celebrating Charles Dickens's 200th birthday next year!

And finally, happy Ada Lovelace Day to everyone, and especially for women working in the sciences.

Have a spiffy weekend, everyone. See you next week.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Blargh, sick day. Hopefully this is a quick-passing bug and I'll be back tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

It's Steampunk Week at Tor! Go, and discover all sorts of wonderful things.

It's also the premiere week of Steampunk Bizarre, an exhibit taking place at the Mark Twain House.

The world's oldest running car is for sale, and it has the amazing name of "the 1884 de Dion Bouton et Trepardoux Dos-a-Dos Steam Runabout." (Imagine listing that as a make and model.)

Halloween decorating can take a very steampunk bent, if one is so inclined.

And lastly, Hendrick's Gin runs some fantastic giveaway contests on their "Unusual Times" weblog. (Must be 21 to view, owing to it being sponsored by gin and all that.)

More giveaway news will appear here shortly!

Monday, October 03, 2011

Happy October! Halloween links are coming; for now, enjoy the tree show!

The final volume of the Dictionary of Regional English is coming out, huzzah. I love this sort of stuff.

More stuff I love: the Resonance Project and Charlotte Gainsbourg. (They haven't collaborated yet, but it would be wild if they did!)

Meanwhile, over in Paris, the Musée d'Orsay has been renovated and rejuvenated.