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Drive Away

Need a free car for a road trip?


I loved my Etch-A-Sketch. Most online Etch-A-Sketch games don't really let you turn both dials at the same time. That's no good!


My grandma had a Spirographe at her house. Spirographe is very popular.

Lite Brite

I always wanted a Lite-Brite when I was a kid and never got one.

Good Friend Mole

moles vs mole rats. New word: eusocial.


The other day I met someone who had never heard of Metafilter.

Hirsute Theremin

Thinking I had a very slight chance of a Googlewhack with "hirsute theremin," I gave it a shot, and the Sputterly Utter didn't even show up at all. What's up with that?

All the Demons

I just started Paradise Lost and learned that Satan's castle is called Pandemonium. Of course.


Men get bored and experiment with and document their facial hair. Some men take their manly adornment fairly seriously, and can even be competetive. Beards make good disguises. You can tell a lot about a man from his beard.


A theremin-based robot at the Robot Talent Show reminded me how neet theremins are. You can get an email address at thereminworld. How about a downloadable desktop theremin? Or theremin's cousin the rhythmicon? Videotheremin, anyone?


Some of the owl species to be found in New York City are the saw whet owl, the great horned owl, the screech owl, the snowy owl, the barred owl, the long-eared owl, the short-eared owl, and the barn owl. One barn owl nest in Jamaica Bay after housing a couple for one year was cleared of the remains of 546 house mice, 234 Norway rats, and 1,947 meadow voles. Vandalism of nesting boxes had prevented successful owl programs in city parks, where they would control the rat population. You're unlikely to actually see an owl, unless you go birding at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge or to see the screech owls in Central Park.


Despite my slight agoraphobia, I love this idea.

"You are invited to take part in MOB, the project that creates an inexplicable mob of people in New York City for ten minutes or less. Please forward this to other people you know who might like to join.
1. At some point during the day on July 16, synchronize your watch to
2. By 7p, based on the month of your birth, please situate yourselves in the bars below. Buy a drink and act casual. If you are attending the MOB with friends, you may all meet in the same bar, so long as at least one of you has the correct birth month for that bar.
January, February, March: Puck Fair, 298 Lafayette, just south of Houston. Meet just inside the front door, to the right.
April, May, June: 288 (a.k.a. Tom & Jerry's), 288 Elizabeth Street, just north of Houston. Meet in the back to the left, by the jukebox.
July, August, September: Bleecker Street Bar, 58 Bleecker Street, at Crosby. Meet in the back to the right, by the jukebox.
October, November, December: Pamela's Cantina, 1 West 3rd Street, just west of Broadway. Meet near the right side of the bar, by the television sets.
3. Then or soon thereafter, a MOB representative will appear in the bar and will pass around further instructions.
4. If you arrive near the final MOB site before 7:18p, stall nearby. No one should arrive at the final mob site until 7:17.
5. At 7:28 you should disperse. No one should remain at the Mob site
after 7:30p.
6. Return to what you otherwise would have been doing, and await
instructions for MOB #5."

Peregrine Falcons

Where to see NYC's falcons: the Manhattan Tower of the Brooklyn Bridge, the Metropolitan Life Building on East 45th St, the bell tower of Riverside Church, and 55 Water Street. (I'm reading Wild New York by Mittlebach and Crewdson).

Swimming Pool

There are 52 public outdoor pools in New York City. Unfortunately McCarren Park Pool, two blocks from where we live, is not one of them. The Next Big Thing, one of my favorite public radio shows, recently did a segment about it. There are pictures on the website.


Yesterday I went to the Police Station to report that my purse had been stolen at the playground. I was appallingly hassled by the incompetent person who was supposed to be helping me. I was unable to file my complaint because I was told that I would need ID. Nobody around me seemed to think that asking a person who has just reported her purse stolen for ID was in the least bit odd. I left, and used a trick I learned during my beauracratic experiences in France: Instead of going right back, I returned at a different time in hopes of being dealt with by a normal human being. I went back this morning and was pleased to find a welcoming helpful police precint. The woman who was to take my complaint said,"You told them your purse was stolen and they told you you need ID? Who did you talk to? What planet was she on?" They gave Vigo a junior police badge and a coloring book.

More Robots

While looking for robot websites for Vigo, I came across this Cool Robot of the Week site from someone at NASA. I realize it was just on Slashdot, but not everyone is a regular there. Check out the nine-minute-long computer animation of the Rover mission to Mars.

Gelatinous Mass

Everyone has probably heard by now, but a Giant sea creature has been found washed up in Chile.


The newest addition to Vigo's bookmarks: ASIMO the humanoid robot who can walk up and down stairs.


This morning we were wondering, what the heck is a cotter pin.

Anita Conrade passed on a piece of Père Lachaise lore this morning concerning Victor Noir and his magical member.

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