Shakespeare on Ice

This seems pretty self-explanatory:

The story of Romeo and Juliet Condensed Into a Single Gif, via The Best of Tumblr / Facebook

Via The Best of Tumblr / Facebook

(Technically, it’s only the first two acts, but close enough.)

Via The Best of Tumblr / Facebook, h/t Danielle.


Pregnant Hands?

Here’s something a grown adult apparently said recently:

A Turkish televangelist has taken masturbation guilt to a whole new level that even puts the Catholic Church to shame.

Mücahid Cihad Han, a Muslim preacher, was fielding the questions of viewers on his television show this Sunday, when one distressed caller asked him about masturbation.

The caller said he that he keeps masturbating although he’s married, even doing the forbidden deed during the “Umrah,” which is the pilgrimage to Mecca performed by Muslims.

From the Hurriyet Daily News:

After repeating the question a few times, Han claimed that Islam strictly prohibits masturbation as a “haram” (forbidden) act. “Moreover, one hadith states that those who have sexual intercourse with their hands will find their hands pregnant in the afterlife, complaining against them to God over its rights,” he said, referring to what he claimed to be a saying of Prophet Muhammad.

[Emphasis added.]

Pregnant hands? I’m trying to give this guy the benefit of the doubt and ponder how that might even work, and, well, I’m going to get a bit crude here. Continue reading


Revisiting Sansa and Ramsay on “Game of Thrones,” One Week Later

I wrote a post a few days ago about the instantly-infamous rape scene in the Game of Thrones episode “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken,” in which I basically said that I found the scene excruciating and unnecessary, but also that the incident itself served the larger narrative of the show. Having now seen the next episode, “The Gift,” I feel rather vindicated in two areas: (1) that the scene served a larger narrative, and (2) that the scene was needlessly brutal.

What “The Gift” managed to accomplish, and where “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken” fell short, is in what one might call the fine art of “less is more” in filmmaking.



The titular alien in the original Alien, to give one example, was scary not only because it was an eight-foot-tall creature with a retractable jaw that bled acid, but also because we barely ever saw it. Continue reading


America’s First Female Lawyer

Saturday, May 23 was the birthday of Arabella Mansfield (1846-1911), who, in 1869, became the first female attorney in the United States.

Via National Women's History Museum / Facebook

Via National Women’s History Museum / Facebook

Via the National Women’s History Museum on Facebook:

In 1869 she became the first female lawyer in the United States. Mansfield passed the bar despite the fact that the test was only supposed to be administered to men at that time. She challenged the legality of the restriction in Iowa and won her appeal, making Iowa the first state to admit women to its bar.

(h/t Georgette)

From the Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys: Continue reading


Monday Morning Cute: Parakeet Style

Even parrots understand the importance of accessorizing.

Continue reading


About that Sansa/Ramsay “Game of Thrones” Scene

If you somehow haven’t heard about it yet (spoiler alerts and all that), last week’s Game of Thrones episode continued the general divergence from the books’ storyline by having Sansa Stark marry Ramsay Bolton (née Snow)—possibly in order to exact vengeance on Ramsay’s father, Roose Bolton, who murdered Sansa’s brother Robb and was directly involved in the murder of her mother, Catelyn. Sansa was apparently unaware of just what a bastard (pun intended) Ramsay is, as was Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish, who brokered the arrangement with Roose Bolton.

The overall storyline of having Sansa marry Ramsay is definitely a huge difference from the books, but it makes sense in the context of a TV show. In the books, Sansa is currently still at the Eyrie with her cousin, Robert Arryn (Robin Arryn on the show), and Ramsay is married to Jeyne Poole, a friend of Sansa’s from Winterfell who is being passed off as Arya Stark. Littlefinger has plans to one day send Sansa back to Winterfell and reveal “Arya Stark” as an impostor, giving Sansa the opportunity to reclaim Winterfell for the Starks. What’s happening on the show fits that same overall scheme, and it does it with fewer characters and less plotting-while-sitting-around.

But that’s not what I really want to talk about, and I think you know that. Continue reading


Tiny Houses and the High Cost of Living Off the Grid

Have you always wanted to live off the grid, close to nature, in a simple dwelling you designed and built yourself? Well, you can!…..assuming, of course, that you have access to land that would enable you to do so, along with the means to do all the stuff I just described, the physical ability to live away from the amenities of civilization, and so forth.

Via Collective Evolution (so consider the source) (h/t Lisé), we learn of a guy who built his “dream mini-home.” In Thailand. On land that was pretty much donated to him. But it’s still a pretty cool house. It has a rooftop hammock platform, which I would totally dig.

Don’t get me wrong—I think it would be great if people en masse could live in a more sustainable way. The key term there is en masse. Continue reading


This Week in WTF, May 22, 2015

– That’s certainly a relief: The Basque people have probable been a bit hesitant to visit Westfjords in northwestern Iceland for a while now. It looks like an absolutely beautiful place, but the Basques—the indigenous ethnic group of northern Spain and southwestern France, have not been welcome there for some time. That’s because until recently, the law in that part of Iceland required killing any Basques in the area:

Basques wanting to visit the dramatic fjords of north-western Iceland need no longer hesitate after the district of Westfjords repealed a 400-year-old decree to kill any Basque caught in the area on sight.

“The decision to do away with the decree was more symbolic than anything else,” said Westfjords district commissioner Jonas Gudmundsson. “We have laws, of course, and killing anyone– including Basques – is forbidden thesedays.”

The edict was issued in 1615 after a storm destroyed three Basque whaling vessels on an expedition in Iceland. Eighty members of the crew survived, said Gudmundsson, and were left stranded in the area. “They had nothing to eat, and there were accounts of them robbing people and farmers,” he said.

The brewing conflict between locals and the whalers prompted then-sheriff Ari Magnússon to draw up a decree that allowed Basques to be killed with impunity in the district. In the weeks that followed, more than 30 Basques were killed in raids led by the sheriff and local farmers. “It’s one of the darkest chapters of our history,” said Gudmundsson, noting that the incident known as the Slaying of the Spaniards ranks among the country’s bloodiest massacres.

(h/t Doug Coulson) Obviously, the law would be unenforceable in the Iceland of 2015 (one hopes), but it’s still a welcome gesture to issue a formal repeal. If nothing else, it gives a little perspective on something like Mississippi ratifying the 13th Amendment (the one that abolished slavery) in 2013, 148 years after the end of slavery. Continue reading


The Man-Approved Feminism of the New “Mad Max” Film

(Adapted from a Facebook comment.)

I have not yet seen Mad Max: Fury Road, although I am very excited about seeing it sometime soon. I re-watched The Road Warrior over the weekend, and have thoroughly enjoyed the various retrospective pieces about the film series. Perhaps even more so, I have felt an extreme sense of Schadenfreude with regard to the way certain people of the MRA persuasion are reacting to the film, generally without even having seen it. Apparently a movie set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland in which men are not the sole focus of attention is absolutely terrifying to some people (and not for any reason having to do with the “post-apocalyptic part.”)

A piece by Breitbart writer John Nolte, as quoted and summarized by bspencer at Lawyers, Guns & Money, offers praise to the film’s view of feminism, at least as Nolte perceives it, from a presumably conservative viewpoint (it is Breitbart, after all): Continue reading


Monday Morning Cute: Stealin Ur Change

This isn’t an actual animal, but technology can be cute, too.

(Via Everbuying / Facebook)