#54: And the muse struck

Space goo, finding Paddington, story dispensers, and synchronised wonderfulness.


Lovely Linky Bits

Thoughtful reads and so forth.

Space Isn’t What You Think It Is
“How can space be a physical thing that ripples and bends, and what does that mean? It means that instead of being like an empty room (a really big room) space is more like a huge blob of thick goo. Normally, things can move around in the goo without any problems, just like we can move around a room full of air without noticing all the air particles. But under certain circumstances, this goo can bend, changing the way that things move through it. It can also squish and make waves, changing the shape of the things inside it.”

The Grays of Our Lives
“Its appeal is its ambiguity. As a color, gray is paradoxically defined by an absence thereof. Achromatic gray exists on a spectrum of pure white to black. The addition of a small proportion of another hue gives chromatic grays their tinge: the greenish gray of the sky just before a storm or the brownish gray of ceramic clay. Perhaps the most compelling thing about gray is that it’s not composed of absolutes — it exists between them. There might be a bluest blue and a reddest red and even a blackest black, but there is no one grayest gray.”

How Paddington Bear Came To Be
“Glancing round in search of inspiration my gaze came to rest on Paddington, who gave me a hard stare from the mantelpiece, and the muse struck, along with what was destined to become the equivalent of a literary catchphrase. Suppose a real live bear ended up at Paddington station? Where might it have sprung from, and why? If it had any sense it would find a quiet spot near the Lost Property Office and hope for the best.”

Curiosities & Delights

Some things to be glad about.

A history of cats.
The short story dispenser and the Biblio-Mat.
Horse-riding librarians of the Great Depression.
101 books recommended by TED speakers.
A resounding “yes!” to duck quack car horns.
How the Amish dress.
The link between egg and wing.
What we didn’t know about the intimate lives of butterflies. Pointing out the realism feats of the great painters.
The world of competitive punning.

Moving Pictures

Video treats upon which to press play.

“I never was a dancer, but I can dance in the water.”
On choosing a narrative of hope.
The sounds of the nightmare machine.
The OK Go guide to finding ideas.
40k free meals daily at the Shri Saibaba temple.