Wednesday Walk Around the Web – 03/29/2017

Welcome to the Wednesday Walk Around the Web, where we weave & wind through weblinks weekly. Hopefully you will find the links on offer amusing, interesting, or, occasionally, profound. Views expressed in the Wednesday Walk do not necessarily reflect those of anyone but the writer. Do you have a link you want to see featured in next week’s Walk? Comment on the Walk post at the Place to Be Nation Facebook page, or find Glenn on the social media platform of your choice!

  • In Gloucestershire, a cursed sword has appeared on a tree. Now, if I know how these things tend to go, someone has to do some research to figure out how to conjure up The Chosen One.
  • Heinz is running ads that literally came from Mad Men, showing as always a finger right on the pulse of pop culture.
  • In 2007, Canadians minted a million-dollar gold coin with Queen Elizabeth’s visage etched upon it. Since 2010 it’s been displayed in a museum in Berlin, from which it’s now been stolen by intrepid thieves making use of such advanced thievery tools as a ladder. Fare thee well, soon-to-be-melted gold.
  • Sometimes it’s worth remembering that there are people on YouTube, people who like video games, or even people who talk about video games on YouTube who aren’t frothing bigots.
  • The President of the US had one of his lackeys make up a bill for him to hand to the German chancellor. So yeah, this is where we are now.
  • Lady Gaga entered the Drag Race Lady Gaga competition. Bless her.
  • This Week in Interior Decorating: The conversation pit seems like it’d be a lovely thing if I had 1) more space and 2) more friends who were 3) more prone to long conversations — so, like, if I’d had a much bigger house in college. Also, is it aggressively middle-class of me to have never been in a living room that wasn’t centered on a TV?
  • NASA has some beautiful travel posters for destinations around our solar system and beyond.
  • Florida manatees shut down a hot spring so they could party down. Aw yeah.
  • This Week in Urban Design: City planners in Oslo recently looked at the city from the height of the average three-year-old rather than an adult, and found that corner bushes were way too high for kids to see oncoming traffic — bad news when kids are walking to school, or just generally out and about. They trimmed the bushes down and found that, what do you know, roads are safer for kids, so more kids can safely walk to school…which in turn decreased the number of cars humming around schools, making it even safer for kids to walk.
  • Spring is coming here in my home hemisphere, which means it’s time for another reminder that lawns are evil, and instead of covering everything in a carpet of disgusting grass we can plant things that make a little more sense. (My hope, in a small way, is that posting this again might prompt me to cover up some of my own grass this year.
  • Rayna is a toddler who loves a robot, and I don’t want to do anything that will ever take that away from her.
  • Hannah Frasier is a mermaid who dances with tiger sharks. Yes.
  • This Week in Hilarious Teen Stunts: PTBN’s very own Jason Greenhouse sends word of 56 boxes of mac ‘n cheese, some teens, and a bathtub. Y’know, as teen hijinks go, that’s pretty anodyne.
  • RIP Sweetie.
  • The Missing Richard Simmons podcast ended last week, and boy howdy did it bring up a ton of issues, from what celebrities owe to their fans to the cost of exposing yourself emotionally as a way of life. I tend to take a dim view of fitness celebrities — as is brought up but not really commented on in the podcast, he made a ton of connections with fat folks by respecting their humanity in the context of trying to lose weight, regardless of the humanity they possessed all along — but at the very least he always had an infectious joy. And frankly, as the podcast went on and it seemed more and more likely that Simmons isn’t in dire straights but just decided to step back from what had become an unsustainable emotional rawness, the whole endeavor of the podcast came to feel a little uncomfortable. Compelling, but a little uncomfortable.
  • I love investigations that take sudden left turns. One person started analyzing why home-court advantage has decreased in the NBA, and wound up finding out that it doesn’t have as much to do with officials as it does dating/hookup apps taking the place of hours of clubbing, and chartered flights also cutting down on booze. Why, I’d go so far as to say that cutting down on booze and getting laid more quickly can boost your day and mine, not just professional sportsfolk.
  • This Week in Cute Animals, Broadly Defined: A wee li’l baby begins its journey to majestic sea flap flap.