Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Greetings! It's been surprisingly busy right before the Thanksgiving break, so SpookyLibrarians HQ is throwing in the towel and taking off until next week. Until then, we leave you with this Fizzigig puppet from The Dark Crystal. Have a safe and spiffy week/weekend/holiday, everyone! Back next week.

Monday, November 25, 2019

Happy Monday!

I read Tedium’s article about tape hiss and then fell down a rabbit hole, trying to find the noise that played at the beginning of many cassette tapes. It’s called XDR (or test tone, sometimes) and of course I should have checked Metafilter first. 

Umberto Eco talked about what Casablanca, Hamlet, and The Count of Monte Cristo have in common – they’re wildly imperfect, which, oddly, makes them great. 

Why are haunted houses creepy? Aeon explores the spooky hallways in our minds.

Friday, November 22, 2019

Happy Friday!

From Cassandra: Sleep detoxifies the brain, and scientists have found out how. So cool!

From Satori: An obscure song (“Animal Song”) from an obscure band (The Europeans) that none of us had heard before. The video is worth watching!

In other music news, a statue of baby Jesus looks eerily like Phil Collins.

Via Popbitch: Every emoji used in Twitter, in real time! Watch the storm of emojis rain down. It’s sort of zen in a way.

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

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Amidst the furor about “factcheckUK,” there’s some good news: Real fact checking platforms are on the rise. 

I absolutely love historical photo detective work, and this instance from the Library of Congress brings attention to an obscure photographer! Also, for the techies among us, the LOC has a lab site with datasets. 

Do you know your Boolean search terms? Do you know them well enough to survive the zombie apocalypse? Welcome to Zombool, aka the Library of the Living Dead! (I am totally installing this on my laptop.)

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Somehow I either missed EPBOT or found it long ago and forgot to bookmark. In any case, check out their holiday party theme! 

It’s NaNoWriMo, and Janelle Shane’s AI is here to help suggest some brilliant opening lines for your novel. Some are actually pretty great and would make good writing prompts.

Via EPBOT: Look at these amazing cosplayers and their Scooby-Doo villain costumes! My favorite is included!

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

My dad used to carve as a hobby, so I’m not sure if my fascination with this chip carver extraordinaire has to do with nostalgia or with its appeal to my detail-oriented nature, or maybe both. I’m not sure I have the steadiness needed for chip carving. In any case, check out Tatiana Baldina’s work! 

CERN is a place of particle physics mystery, but also home to everyday actions like balloons and pets and bikes and whatnot. 

The Met has a new exhibit beginning next week that should appeal to anyone of a steampunky bent: it’s all about the innovations of the Renaissance-era European courts. (And that’s before next year’s Met Gala, all about time!)

Monday, November 18, 2019

Happy Monday!

TV weirdness: OK, I had no idea whatsoever that there was a fifth roommate in The Young Ones, in plain sight, for real!

Film 1: Here are some obscure folk horror films for the Wicker Man fans out there (hi).

Film 2: What are bad movies, exactly?

Historic writing: A look at Roman blueprints, labels, and informational signage!

Friday, November 15, 2019

Happy Friday! Today’s links (except one) are brought to you by Cassandra. Thanks so much for the links!

- Consciousness is hard to define and hard to explain, and maybe it’s always there but maybe it develops and…well, it’s difficult, okay?

- “Hysteria” accounted for many issues women encountered in the past, and women writers explored the system that purported to treat such a thing. 

- The story of Jerold Haas is sad and fascinating, and I’m wondering if we knew any of the same people, as we went to the same university and were about the same age.

 - Vashti Bunyan made an album in 1970 and then gave up, but the music kept going and brought her back for more, thirty years later. 

And for the Twitter users, this thread of real-time reactions to reading Bram Stoker’s Dracula is absolutely, hilariously brilliant.

Have a safe and spiffy weekend, everyone! See you next week.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Librarian Twitter is some of the best Twitter around, and here’s one example! 

The Internet Archive is adding and customizing its digital audio offerings. You can also check out UNESCO’s digital archives, or, if you like German techno, you can listen to over 200 GB of mixes, courtesy of DJ Mag.

And finally, if you like crowdsourcing projects and the night sky, consider helping out at Lost At Night, which studies light pollution.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

I don’t know what it is about Belgian surrealist and symbolist painters, but I absolutely love them. William Degouve de Nuncques will always be my favorite, but I just discovered Paul Delvaux, and wow. 

Meanwhile, there’s amazing modern craftsmanship going on in the world of cosplay, as Talon’s work demonstrates. 

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab has revisited and refreshed their Good Omens offerings! 

Venice is underwater again. The photos are a curious mix of tragedy and blasé people getting on with their lives...which is how it works, I suppose.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Hello! We have some random bits today.

Flashbak has an amazing story about Alexei Leonov, the first man to walk in space. Come for the suspenseful story of how dangerous the mission was, and stay for Leonov’s art of what he saw in space.

Meanwhile, you can make your own orrery, and Make shows you how! 

Biodegradable sequins mean you can be fabulous and environmentally aware. Just think of the mermaid costume possibilities.

Friday, November 08, 2019

Happy Friday!

From Zazoo: How Lana Del Rey are you? This quiz will tell you! (Zazoo and I are both 75% Lana, apparently.)

Also from Zazoo: the changing populations of creatives in NYC. (Comment from Zazoo: “If you click on the map, you can see how creatives are fleeing the Village and the Lower East Side in droves! Thanks, NYU!”)

From Cassandra: Do mass protests work? It depends on who's protesting. 

Also from Cassandra: Ain’t no party like a Mercury Transit Party, cause a Mercury Transit Party can crack your telescopes if you’re not careful!

Via Popbitch: The Argos Book of Dreams, i.e. catalogues from the 1970s up to today. I was not familiar with Argos, but it looks like the British version of the late lamented Service Merchandise in the US. Plus, catalogues from the 1970s and 1980s are always fantastic.

And finally, behold Quilty, the escape artist cat looking for a (secured?) home! He even has his own Instagram now.

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

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Today is split between the spooky and the wanderlust!

Spooky: Happy 10th anniversary to Murder By Gaslight, and here’s to many more.

Also spooky, sort of: What’s up with the Mandela effect (also known as The Berenstain/Berenstein Bears question)?

Wandering: A look back at Baltimore Jack, a fixture for several years on the Appalachian Trail.

More travel: Why did Nashville become the center of country music?

Tuesday, November 05, 2019

Hello and happy Election Day!

Halloween may be over, but it’s not too late to browse the Public Domain Review’s spooky offerings. (Check out the photos of the Paris catacombs!)

Speaking of photos, Bernard Eilers experimented with color before Kodak made it mainstream, and his photos are gorgeous. 

And because I absolutely love old photos, especially mugshots that show character, here are some ne’er-do-wells from Nebraska. (Check out the related links at the bottom, too!)

Friday, November 01, 2019