April 04, 2020

April News

* Overheard in the Store/ at the Con/ at Writers With Drinks:

"It's a writing prompt: 'A lending library. . .*of* children.  Maybe a Redbox too.'"

"Hey, have you heard of this Robert Heinlein guy?"
"Wasn't he the one who wrote TWILIGHT?"

"Sadly I've had to put the whole cannibal thing on hiatus indefinitely."

"People will totally pay double to get drunk in a collapsing multiverse."

"It's completely legal to ship axolotls in the US, so at one point I received a box that said 'Contains Live Salamanders -- Hopefully'."

"That's A LOT of finger food for a pandemic."

"Their first mistake was assuming I was a harmless old woman. They didn't get a chance at another mistake."

"Eeney, meeney, mine-y, . . . . Both!"

"A bunch of great people. . .   great, supportive, and REALLY weird."

"We're vertical, on the right side of the sod, and sending telemetry. We're good!"

* Welcome to our new neighbors, indie comic shop Silver Sprocket!  https://missionlocal.org/2020/02/sliver-sprocket-punk-rock-indie-comic-disneyland-opens-on-valencia-street/

* Meet the mad scientist who wrote the book on hunting hackers: https://www.wired.com/story/meet-the-mad-scientist-who-wrote-the-book-on-how-to-hunt-hackers/

* Black History Month is over, but these authors deserve to be read all year 'round: https://theportalist.com/black-science-fiction-and-fantasy-authors

* Beer in Space!  Author Arkady Martine gives us the low-down on deep-space home brewing: https://www.tor.com/2020/01/24/how-to-brew-beer-in-the-confines-of-a-generation-ship/#more-544311

* A victim of the 79 A.D. volcanic blast at Herculaneum was found with an exploded skull and glass-like brain tissue . . .  https://www.livescience.com/vitrified-brain-of-vesuvius-victim-found.html

* A gallery of Rod Serling's "Night Gallery" paintings: https://dangerousminds.net/comments/a_gallery_of_the_paintings_from_rod_serlings_night_gallery

* Riddle us this: What has the head of a vulture, the body of a parrot, is the size of a small child -- oh, and is TOTALLY REAL?  This isn't a fantasy creature, this is the Dracula Parrot. https://mysticalraven.com/adventures/17554/the-dracula-parrot-is-scary-and-beautiful-all-at-once

* In today's real-life Lovecraftian-Horrors news: https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/stories/newly-discovered-underwater-volcanic-range-teeming-bizarre-tiny-fanged-fish

* From the Hogwarts school to the Wall in "Game of Thrones," here's how different buildings from fiction measure up: https://www.digg.com/video/comparison-sizes-of-fictional-buildings

* A 16th-century assassin's (or perhaps just an herbalist's?) cabinet discovered in a hollowed-out book: https://mymodernmet.com/poison-cabinet/

* Once again, reality and science fiction are neck and neck: scientists build "first living robots" from frog stem cells: "It's a new class of artifact: a living, programmable organism." https://futurism.com/scientists-worlds-first-living-robots-stem-cells

* What every mystery fan needs -- a thorough guide to not getting murdered in a quaint English village: https://crimereads.com/your-guide-to-not-getting-murdered-in-a-quaint-english-village/

* Is Belukha Mountain (Siberia's highest peak) haunted by the color out of space?  https://mymodernmet.com/clouds-belukha-mountain-siberia/

* Forget chess - the real challenge is teaching AI to play D&D.  Some artificial intelligence experts think role playing adventure games will help machines learn to be as clever as we are: https://www.wired.com/story/forget-chess-real-challenge-teaching-ai-play-dandd/

* The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is 42! https://www.chortle.co.uk/news/2020/02/28/45518/the_hitchhiker%E2%80%99s_guide_to_the_galaxy_is_42%21

* It was just a matter of time.  Creepy abandoned dollhouses for your inner demon child: https://www.messynessychic.com/2020/02/27/and-now-abandoned-dollhouses-for-your-inner-demon-child/

* Akira Kurosawa's spectacular hand-painted storyboards: https://faroutmagazine.co.uk/akira-kurosawa-hand-painted-storyboards/

* "Medieval wall made of bones".  How can you resist a phrase like that? https://www.iflscience.com/editors-blog/medieval-wall-made-of-human-bones-discovered-in-belgium/

* NOT Dr. Seuss creations . . . 10 amazing and beautiful houseplants you never knew existed: https://mysticalraven.com/art/11803/top-10-amazing-but-also-beautiful-houseplants-you-never-knew-existed

* Metal, Dude! Astronomers have discovered a planet where it rains iron: https://www.cnet.com/news/astronomers-discovered-a-giant-planet-where-it-rains-iron/

* David insisted I HAD to include this in a newsletter ASAP -- detailed 3D illustrations of anatomically correct cartoon character skulls labeled as scientific specimens: https://laughingsquid.com/cartoon-skulls/

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