Sisters Liqueurs

“Sister Liqueurs is a new cocktail club in Brooklyn; think CSA but for Liqueurs. All Liqueurs are handmade, using organic herbs, spices, fruits and vegetables. Sister Liqueurs has monthly membership meetings in the form of cocktail parties. Members can bring one guest per party. At the parties samples of different cocktails made with the liqueur of the month are available for enjoyment, along with recipe suggestions.”… Read the rest

Fangoria 2010 – Steampunk Time Machine Haunted House

“A first person walk through of ‘Machine’, a steam punk horror show we built and performed in our garage.”

“it took about 18 months of tinkering in the garage to build it, we’ve been planning and designing it since way before. There’s one top secret bit of kit we had to build first to enable the the machine to travel between scenes. The whole set is only in a normal sized double garage. One of the most time consuming bits of the build was the brick walls in old London, each brick hand carved from polystyrene, that might have been a mistake.”

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Long Island City CSA

“The Long Island City CSA program is a partnership between the residents of Long Island City and the Farm at Miller’s Crossing in Hudson, NY. We are proud to be a mixed income CSA, ensuring access to good food for people of all income levels.”… Read the rest

Sprout Creek Farm

“Encompassing 200 acres in Dutchess County, NY, Sprout Creek Farm is really three different entities, distinct yet dynamically entertwined. It is a working farm, raising free-ranging cows, sheep, goats, wild turkeys, guinea fowl, chickens, and pigs.

It is a market, selling our internationally award-winning cheeses and farm-produced meats, as well as local Hudson Valley milk, eggs, vegetables, crafts, and gifts. And it is an educational center, offering day, weekend, and summer programs that help connect young people to the land, the seasons, and the plants and animals that co-exist here in harmonious rhythm.”… Read the rest

Lunokhod 1 – Moon Robot

This is Mars Rovers Spirit and Opportunity’s grandfather, of sorts:

“In November 1970, more than a year after the United States’ Apollo 11 mission, Soviet engineers sent Lunokhod 1 to the moon aboard a probe named Luna 17. Powered by solar cells and equipped with radio antennas, cameras, and a dust-sampling scooper, Lunokhod 1 had the appearance of an otherworldly creature.”

It was the first robot on another celestial body.

And it’s still there.… Read the rest

Burton Baton

One of the good things (the one good thing?) about spending time in Delaware is that Dogfish Head is the local beer.

The greater Philadelphia area in general is great for craft beer, with lots of small brewers starting all the time, and established high-quality breweries such as Victory and Tröegs close by.

My new favorite beer is Dogfish’s Burton Baton a 10% abv oak-aged imperial IPA

From the site: “For Burton Baton we first brew two ‘threads’ or batches of beer: an English-style Old Ale and an Imperial IPA. After fementating the separate beers in our stainless tanks, the two are transferred and blended together in one of our large oak tanks. Burton Baton sits on the wood for about a month.”

As Mike says, … Read the rest

A. B. Smeby Bittering Co.

I remember when New York City experienced a shortage of bitters when there was a sudden spike in popularity of drinks such as the Old Fashioned or the Manhattan (possibly dues to the prevalence of those drinks on the show, Mad Men)

(The classic Angostura bitters are easy to get in Delaware. It’s sold in most grocery stores I’ve seen)

The A. B. Smeby Bittering Company came up with the brilliant (and in hindsight, obvious) idea to make local bitters.

Their flavors vary rather far from the Angostura bitters that I’m used to, which smell and taste of something like cloves and nutmeg:

Apple Cinnamon with Molasses
Highland Heather
Cherry Vanilla
Spiced Cranberry
Black and White (as in the cookie)
Lemon Verbena… Read the rest

Space Settlement

NASA has a server called (password-protected) with a subdomain at which contains a number of odd things, including an archive of artists’ renderings of proposed earthling settlements in space. The proposals are basically for big round greenhouses, rotating to simulate gravity via centrifugal force – not so different than what has been proposed in a lot of science fiction in movies and on TV.

Somehow I’m comforted that there are people making plans for this kind of thing, even though it’s discouraging to see how so much of the optimism of the 60s and 70s (regarding space travel as well as almost everything else) never went anywhere.… Read the rest


This is one of those things that sounds more like a discarded Dharma Initiative plot line from Lost than reality, yet it’s real. The Burlington (VT) Free Press recently profiled the Teresem Movement Foundation, based in Bristol, VT, which calls itself a “a transreligion for technological times”.

They are working on promoting “exponential life” – essentially getting to the point where we can download our consciousnesses into robotic bodies. The idea has been explored recently in shows such as Dollhouse and Caprica and does seem to be the ultimate target of a lot of scientific research.

Teresem has two journals: The Journal of Geoethical Nanotechnology and The Journal of Personal Cyberconsciousness.

The NYTimes profiled one of the automatons, Bina48, which, along with tripping the … Read the rest

Gender-based Optical Illusion

Scientific American often has articles/slideshows related to visual illusions. In October 2009 they had one specifically about faces.

The illusion below struck me most. To me, and apparently to most others, the face on the left appears female and the one on the right appears male. In fact, the face is the same in both pictures, although the one on the left has higher contrast between the eyes and mouth and the rest of the face. This could be just a novelty, or could be taken as proof that lipstick and eye makeup are literally making a face appear more feminine.

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Mary & Max

I had not heard of the movie Mary & Max until recently, although it won many awards after it was released in 2009. It’s enormously charming and touching and I recommend it to anyone, particularly anyone who enjoys stop-motion/”claymation” (or is interested in stories dealing with Asperger’s Syndrome, since one of the characters has that condition).

The website is also very well done – perhaps the best movie-promo site I’ve seen.… Read the rest