Sunday, December 31, 2006

Aesop, Shmaesop

While the staff here at Information Nation has been laying around, eating leftover Christmas stocking chocolate Santas and watching DVR'd reruns of Match Game on Game Show Network, those industrious drones at Look At This... have been playing ant to my grasshopper, collecting hundreds of Best of 2006 links for the winter while I cavorted and shirked in the summer sun. Sorry, ILUVNUFC. Nobody said this blogging business was fair.

The ill-gotten gains via the sweat of another blogger's brow begin here with parts 1, 2, 3 and 4.

Happy New Year's all!

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Friday, December 29, 2006

Hundreds of Disneyland animatronics can't be wrong...

It really is a small world after all. Check out this great comparison of various planet and star sizes.

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Thursday, December 28, 2006

These are a few of my fictional things

Oh those Wikipedia lists of fictional things. They make me giddy with joy, they do. Here are but a few for your consideration:

List of Fictional Chemical Substances (A-M) (N-Z) (think Star Wars' Carbonite or The Nutty Professor's Flubber)

List of Fictional Toxins (Superman's Kryptonite, The Princess Bride's Iocane Powder)

List of Fictional Diseases (Andromeda Strain's Andromeda, The Stand's Captain Trips)

List of Fictional Brands (I Love Lucy's Vitameatavegamin, Bag o' Glass - Sold by toymaker Irving Mainway, played by Dan Aykroyd on Saturday Night Live)

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Making printer ink cartridges seem like a bargain

Oh yeah... I meant to post this last week or so, but it slipped my mind and then I forgot where the site was and my dog ate the keyboard and blah blah blah. And thus concludes the apology.

Food blogger for posts a 10-part(!) expose on the obscenely-priced ($2088/pound when you buy in small quantities) chocolate brand Noka. Is it worth it? Duh. The article, while a bit lengthy, is still a good read and a shining example of indie investigative journalism. Someone at Noka should be a little worried. (via Boing Boing)

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006


Slate has a humorous look at some of the current crop of Ads We Hate: The Worst Commercials on Television. Somehow he missed the worst offender of them all, the one for HeadOn. HeadOn! Apply directly to the forehead! HeadOn! Apply directly to the forehead! HeadOn!

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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Pictures are overrated

White Jigsaw is just what it says. A jigsaw puzzle you can play in your browser, and all the pieces are white. You start out slow and easy with a 4 X 3 puzzle, and work your way up from there (I'm currently on the 11 X 8 level). The Jay Is Games people reviewed it this past fall, and according to the reader comments there, at least a few people got up to the 25 X 18 level before their corneas exploded from trying to view the by-then microscopic puzzle pieces. Anyway, it's a fun and addictive little diversion from your feverish present-wrapping marathon.

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Friday, December 22, 2006

(I.N.M.F.B.) Information Nation Means Fine Blogging

You know what I got for Christmas? Oh, it was a banner #%$*ing year at the old Bender family. I got a carton of cigarettes. The old man grabbed me and said, "Hey, smoke up Johnny." - John Bender, The Breakfast Club

A Flickr photoset of vintage cigarette ads

There are so many dangers to smoking... and Tom Mullica ignores them all.

I don't know where he learned to smoke like that, but I bet he started when he was young. Probably picked up the habit from watching cartoons.

Test your tobacco marketing acumen by taking this Cigarette Advertising Slogan Quiz. I got just 10 out of 20.

Another list of cigarette slogans.

While we're on the subject of coffin-nail ads, I recall a certain print ad campaign Benson & Hedges used to run to promote their B&H 100s line back in the 70s. The come-on was a sweepstakes with 100 winners and 100 prizes. There were little cartoon illustrations of the 100 prize choices, all of them tied into the number 100 somehow, some good and some obviously jokes. I see one is 100 rolls of film, 100 feet of $1 bills ($200), 100 rolls of dimes ($500), one of them is a kayak, one is a car. I'm not sure how they tied those in to the number 100 due to the poor image quality. I've been looking for an hour for a clearer scan of the ad but apparently my Google-fu is not strong enough.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Gee. Do they still make wooden Christmas trees?

You could have found the true meaning of Christmas by getting the Pathetic Charlie Brown Christmas Tree for Urban Outfitters, but sadly, it is now sold out. Good Grief! (via mental_floss)

And if that doesn't bring you down enough, take a moment to listen to that saddest of Christmas songs, the one that plays while Charlie Brown shuffles around with his head hung down, "Christmastime Is Here" by the Vince Guaraldi Trio. I couldn't locate a pic of Charlie Brown doing the depressed shuffle, so I will instead use this one from the "Good Grief" episode of Season 2 of Arrested Development.

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Something for the Follicularly Blessed

Go ahead and pull your hair away from your ears and take this "Hair Care or Digital Audio logo?" quiz. I got 11 out of 14. How 'bout you? (via Bifurcated Rivets)

On the subject of hair sprouting from your body, here's a tip to these gentlemen: They're called scissors. Look into it.

World's longest ear hair

World's longest eyebrow

(Check out even more Weird World Records from this vintage Neatorama post)

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

Groin Guns, Nook-ya-lur Toys and other life-threatening playthings

The box says Fun! Easy! Exciting!

Notice that "Safe!" is not one of the items on the list. In 1951, a mere $49.50 could get you the U-238 Atomic Energy Lab, containing three "very low-level" radiation sources, a Wilson Cloud Chamber and a Geiger counter. This item is #2 on Radar Magazine's "Ten Most Dangerous Toys of All Time". If you're wondering what the heck beats out a toy that needs to come with its own Geiger counter for World's Most Dangerous Toy, (carefully) click on. (via Cynical-C)

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OMG. Best. Cliches. Evar.

Blog cliches that need to go away. Oy, I'm guilty of a couple of these.
(via Lifehacker)

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Staying Alive

Even back in my younger days, I was a trivia sponge. One of my favorite sources of obscure historical fact was the People's Almanac series, compiled by David Wallechinsky and Irving Wallace, the guys who also published The Book of Lists series, which I also practically memorized back then.

Anyway, buried somewhere in one of the editions of The People's Almanac was the tragicomic story of the 1930s New York gang Murder Trust and Michael Malloy, who survived over 30 murder attempts. I managed to locate a full reprint of the story which I think you will enjoy.

The Gang That Couldn't Kill Straight Part 1
The Gang That Couldn't Kill Straight Part 2
The Gang That Couldn't Kill Straight Part 3
The Gang That Couldn't Kill Straight Part 4
The Gang That Couldn't Kill Straight Part 5

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Monday, December 11, 2006

Who do you want to be today?

Apparently, last month David Letterman had "Impressionist Week" on Late Night. Two of my faves were on during the week: Frank Caliendo and Kevin Pollack, whose Peter Falk cracks me up every time. (via growabrain)

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You'll shoot your eye out, kid

Perhaps it's just the rose-tinted memories of one of my favorite Christmas movies, but I don't recall the trailer to A Christmas Story being so... dark.

If all you really want for Christmas is an "official Red Ryder carbine action two-hundred shot range model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time", well I have some good news and some bad news for you. Daisy does indeed still manufacture a Model 1938 Red Ryder BB gun, and the shot capacity has even gone up to 650 rounds. Tragically, however, no compass. And we won't even go into "the thing that tells time".

On the other hand, you can still own your own "leg lamp" via one of two ways. You can do it the old-fashioned way and win yourself "a major award", or you can shell out a couple hundred dollars American and get your very own fishnet-stockinged holiday memory shipped directly to you in a box or crate marked "FRA-GI-LEE" with a "Major Award" certificate suitable for framing.

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Friday, December 08, 2006

Start and Stop. And Start. And Stop. And Start. And Stop. And so on.

Tony vs. Paul, a stop-motion battle between two friends (via J-Walk)

So this is what Web 2.0 is, huh?

This soundtrack brought to you by The International House of Pancake Jingles

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We built this list on Rock & Roll

You would think that a list from Blender titled The 50 Worst Artists in Music History would be open for argument. It is not. Creed, Blind Melon, The Doors, Starship. No, these are exactly right. (via Look at This...)
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Let's be careful out there, gamers

The Japanese version of the Wii Safety manual has some hilarious illustrations. (via Global Nerdy)

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Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Good Experience Games has a great collection of nice, free little online games. A couple of standouts from the wordplay category are listed for your enjoyment, enlightenment and all-around edu-tainment.

WEBoggle, where you play against your online opponents in a 4X4 or 5X5 timed Boggle showdown. I was getting my butt handed to me on a regular basis, but who knows, you'll probably do fine!

Even if you run screaming from traditional crossword puzzles, try Crossword. It's the first "crossword puzzle" I've ever seen with no clues!

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I must have been number 31 or something... yeah, that's it.

From the newly-discovered (by me at least)

A list of thirty of The best blogs of 2006 that you (maybe) aren't reading. There's something for everybody, including:

Cute Overload

I kid you not a blog on The History of the Button. Surprisingly interesting!

Plus there's another 28 on the list to check out, so you better get clicking...

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Monday, December 04, 2006

I can tell you only three things...

You think you're smarter than Bill Gates? Petals Around the Rose is the puzzle/game that stumped a young Mr. Gates back in 1977. Can you unlock the secret?

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How to Sculpt an Elephant in Two E-Z Steps!

Step 1. Get a block of granite
Step 2. Chip away anything that doesn't look like an elephant

Carved crayons (via Boing Boing)

Carved pencils

Carved soap

How to whittle

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