Spiders and the Quest for Truth

posted by Vitamin-T on 2010.02.08, under Vitamin-T

Where do the spiders that are often found on the windows of Chicago skyscrapers come from?  Perhaps the simplest explanation is that they climbed there from the ground below.  Well my friends, the simple explanation is not always the truth!  The June 2002 issue of Dwell, a modern architecture and design magazine, gives the following explanation:

“Immigrants from rural Michigan, the high-rise spiders make their way up the skyscrapers of downtown Chicago by surfing the southwesterly winds blowing across lake Michigan.  Genetically programmed to hitch a ride on the breeze while just days old, the spiders’ progress is halted by the skyscrapers fronting the lake. ‘Spiders balloon from place to place, that’s how they get around,’ says Louis Sorkin, an arachnologist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.”

The full article is here.

The Fine Line Between Pranks and Evil

posted by Vitamin-T on 2010.01.13, under Vitamin-T

As promised, here’s Part 8 of the famous (or apparently not-s0-famous, since you’re seeing it here) College Humor Prank War:

“I’m looking for the goddess…”

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.10.09, under Vitamin-T

As promised, here is the “Video Mate” montage.  Now in these guy’s defence, I think it’s fair to say that we all make fools out of ourselves in the pursuit of love.  Fortunately (or not, depending on how you look at it), most of us didn’t get caught on video.  

Bernanke’s Successor

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.08.05, under Vitamin-T

The current recession has forced many economists to reevaluate their theories.  Amid this confusion, a relatively unknown philosopher has appeared and revolutionized the way we think about the capitalist system:

From ic to I

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.05.18, under Vitamin-T

Why do we capitalize the singular first person pronoun “I” in English? After some searching around the internets, i found a short essay that discusses several of the prominent theories and reaches the following conclusion:

Though they don’t stand up to inspection when taken individually, a combination of the theories could be the answer. Some intangible mixture of aesthetics, convention, phonology, clarity, egotism, and a very loose orthography seem to have conspired in the period of English’s greatest upheaval to produce a form which appears natural today but makes as much etymological sense as the l in could or the b in debt. Though we crave discrete atomic answers, language is driven by consensus and convention. Even though there is no historical rationale for the capitalisation, we’re forced to retain it because of convention.

So how did we reach this strange Nash equilibrium?  We just don’t know.

Not a (Recommended) Through Street

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.05.05, under Vitamin-T

In defense of my claim that it was scary driving down Cicero from I-90/I-94 to I-55, I present the following map (you can go here to create your own Chicago crime maps).  And I’m pretty sure we had to stop for gas in one of those red zones.

Chicago Crime Summary – Category: Violent Crime – Past 90 Days



The Original Transformers Movie

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.05.05, under Vitamin-T

The second installment in the Transformers film franchise, titled “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen”,  is due for release this June.  The special effects in this sequel will surely impress; but, if it’s anything like its predecessor, the film’s plot and acting will be disastrous.  I was especially disappointed in the first live-action Transformers movie because I, like many of you, was raised on the original Transformers cartoons.  What’s more, I was a proud owner of the original Transformers movie, released in 1986.  That movie was awesome!  It had a rad 80’s soundtrack; and, as for the plot, only minutes into the movie I was already in tears.  So reach for your inner child and brace yourself for what’s about to happen:

Memes are People too

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.05.01, under Vitamin-T

Shortly after Al Gore invented the internet, but prior to the emergence of such online-dating giants as eHarmony and Match.com, there was a lonely 11-year-old boy named Michael.  With his famous opening line, “Hello my future girlfriend,” young Michael created a classic meme, and cemented his position in the internet hall of fame.  But behind all the glitz and glamour, this poor kid’s measly webpage forced him to live a double life.  Whether you are an old fan or are just meeting Michael for the first time, his short autobiography is an interesting case study in the real life consequences of accidental internet stardom.

Be Somebody… or Be Somebody’s Fool!

posted by Vitamin-T on 2009.04.28, under Vitamin-T

In 1983, Laurence Tureaud, better known as Mr. T, was arrested on charges of purchasing Cuban gold chains in violation of the U.S. trade embargo against Cuba.  As part of a plea deal, Mr. T agreed to star in a motivational video for urban youth.  Here is a sample of the finished product, titled “Be Somebody… or Be Somebody’s Fool!”:


“Treat Your Mother Right” (lyrics by Ice-T)

“Peer Pressure” (featuring New Edition)