This blog covers everything except sports and gardening, unless we find a really good link about using dead professional bowlers for mulch. The author is a StarTribune columnist, has been passing off fiction and hyperbole as insight since 1997, has run his own website since the Jurassic era of AOL, and was online when today’s college sophomores were a year away from being born. So get off his lawn.

Van Gogh and Fishhooks

Posted by: James Lileks under Minnesota History, Outstate Updated: September 9, 2013 - 12:38 PM

The prospect of hitting 97 today seems low, doesn’t it? When the sun comes out the temps bloom, but the haze seems to be working to keep things from feeling like a Venusian sauna. Well, let’s chill out with some cool links! KIDDING. That cliche was brought to you by a website in 1998. By the way, why do we chill out, but cool down? Can one not chill down and cool out? Stands to reason, but people would think you had cliche dyslexia.

Okay, I’ll shut up. Here we go:

CRUNCH The headline for this one said “What does a biker look like flying over my car?” A good question, but there’s also the question of what sound proceeds the sight. Dash-cam videos provide an opportunity to judge the actions of random strangers, and in this case the motorcyclist seems to be at fault. His brisk trot back to the ruins of his steed are the perfect punctuation to his post-flight fame.

 

 

Actually, no, it’s the wipers.

HISTORY Here’s a look at some early Target stores. It’s the 50th anniversary next month. One of the first:

 

 

 

I remember the store in Moorhead - sorry, Moorehead. It had the logo embedded in the floor. No one really knew what Target was supposed to be, and there was so much competition: K-Mart ruled, and there was also Zayre’s for when you wanted to feel depressed about your life. More here.

 

 

ART A Van Gogh painting previously thought fake turns out to be real. (Shown at right; actually size. It was his "miniaturist" period.) The article notes that it was from the estate of Nikolai Christian Mustad. Who? Well, his father was Hans Mustad, who built up a large industrial concern. Says wikipedia:

 

The company eventually became the world's largest producer of fish hooks.

Which led to a fortune that probably still clatters through the commerce of Norway daily.

 

HOAX DU JOUR Kanye West insulted croissants on his latest album, and French bakers sent a letter of protest. It was hilarious! Today - the NBC morning show - said this:

In the letter, the bakers stress that a croissant can’t be rushed, as it is akin to a work of art. They also say they would let the slight pass, but they take his lyrics seriously.

“From the other lines in the song, we have come to understand that you may in fact be a 'God.' Yet if this were the case  —  and we, of course, take you at your word  —  we wonder why you do not more frequently employ your omnipotence to change time and space to better suit your own personal whims,” the letter reads.

Yes. This is for real.

No. This is for fake. Politico:

 

There is no Association of French Bakers. There are no English-language mentions of the trade association prior to this month. The address of the association in Paris does not exist. The letter was, in fact, first posted as a parody by writer W. David Marx on the website Medium earlier this month. It was picked up as fact by legitimate news outlets like Billboard, The Hollywood Reporter, Fox News, Time, USA Today, The Root, Grist and many, many others. Only Time and the THR have corrections up as of right now.

I’ll be checking all the other sites to see if they correct. Just kidding! Refreshing “Grist” every hour to see if they’ve clarified the Kanye / Baguette issue is low on the list for afternoon duties.

 

YOU THERE Today’s bossy YOU headlines popped up 12 seconds after I went online. Digg is to blame.

500 Retweets Could Land You In Jail In China Not me. I am not subject to Chinese law. On the other hand, one link could put someone in prison in the United States. On a related note: bravery in Russia.

 

 

Anyway: Everytime you shampoo you’re hurting the environment That’s from Mother Jones. So aliens will visit the planet in 100 years, find a lifeless husk, and think “the fools! They shampooed themselves out a habitat!” The actual details, which are interesting, are here. Big Shampoo says it’s going to phase out the problematic ingredients, but not until they find something that works just as well.

If you're suspecting a replay of the ruination of dishwashing detergent, you're not alone. 

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