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Tell a friend shipwrecked in New York City

This American Life: "In the Shadow of the City"

The O.C. character Summer Roberts described This American Life as the "…[radio] show where those hipster know-it-alls talk about how fascinating ordinary people are." Albeit an accurate description, I enjoy Ira Glass’s stories nonetheless. "In the Shadow of the City" (aired February 3, 2006) sent me on an emotional roller coaster ride. “Act One” — a story about literally getting shipwrecked in the archipelago of New York City — made me laugh so hard that I temporarily lost control of a certain bodily function and had to change my pants. I think what did it for me was: “…I got a little mad at the city of New York. I could understand if they had just one pay phone there, or at least, I don’t know, like a button to press to know that you’re there, you know?” (16 minutes, 42 seconds) — as well as the absurd image of fashioning slippers or a raft out of ducks (18 minutes, 32 seconds).

I had the exact opposite reaction to "Act Two," a sobering personal description of the post-Katrina cleanup nightmare in New Orleans. And "Act Three" simply made me crave chocolate.

Posted February 9, 2006 by Mariva in entertainment, news

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Tell a friend It really makes you think…

thinking

It really makes you think

Philosophy Talk: A couple of Stanford University professors discuss one broad, intriguing topic — such as time, happiness, forgiveness, virtue, propaganda, science, free will, democracy, beauty and so on — each week on a public radio program.

Posted February 8, 2006 by Mariva in education, entertainment, fun, innovations, news, resources

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Tell a friend Super Bowl commercials

Apple "1984" Super Bowl commercial What’s the best part of the Super Bowl? The parties? Making food or ordering in? The risque halftime entertainment? The fact that for some, it marks the end of seventeen weeks of misery?

While you’re thinking it over, ponder your favorite Super Bowl commercials.

Posted February 6, 2006 by Mariva in business, entertainment, finance, fun, games, news, social

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Tell a friend Groundhog Day

Groundhog Day

If you’re not in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania today, you can celebrate the annual tradition with the next best thing: watching my all-time favorite comedy film, Groundhog Day, which is said to be — believe it or not — one of the greatest Buddhist allegories ever.

(Background info about the movie is fun, too.)

Posted February 2, 2006 by Mariva in education, entertainment, holidays, movies

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Tell a friend Pandora, the Music Genome Project

Pandora, the Music Genome Project

Ever wish there were a radio station that played exactly what you wanted to hear? Well, there is — sort of. Pandora is an online project put together by music experts who’ve spent the past five years analyzing recorded songs from over 10,000 different artists. The analysts have assembled hundreds of musical attributes — or "genes" — into a massive database, which they call the "Music Genome."

Posted January 23, 2006 by Mariva in entertainment, fun, innovations, music

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Tell a friend Katamari

Katamari Damacy

Knowing that I have an addictive personality — at least with regard to the "soft addictions" — I do my best to stay away from treacherous time traps like Freecell Solitaire. And if I owned a game console that could play Super Mario, I’d probably never see the light of day.

Posted January 18, 2006 by Mariva in entertaining, entertainment, fun, gadgets, games, gifts, home, innovations, news

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Tell a friend fun sites

fun

Googlism: Find out what Google "thinks" of you — or of anyone or anything else.

The Dialectizer: Turn the verbal content of a web page into any of a variety of funny dialects, including "Jive," "Cockney," "Elmer Fudd," "Swedish Chef," "Moron," "Pig Latin" or "Hacker." I sound quite cornpone when Mariva’s Guide has been Redneck Dialectized.

5ives: Lists of five things within a random topic, such as "five ways to get on the del.icio.us home page" or "five terrible fake ideas for a retro TV comeback."

Posted January 11, 2006 by Mariva in business, education, entertainment, fun, games, innovations, resources

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Tell a friend Friday

Friday

Friday movie collection

Friday Night Lights movie

NPR’s Talk of the Nation: Science Friday (program site)

Bike Friday: folding travel bicycles

Photo Friday: weekly photo challenge

Posted January 6, 2006 by Mariva in community, entertainment, fun, innovations, movies, news, resources, social, travel

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Tell a friend winter holiday music

Jethro Tull Christmas Album Jethro Tull Christmas Album
I’ve never been much of a Deadhead, but as youthful musical obsessions go, I would say I was definitely more of a Tull Skull. As such, this is one of my favorite winter holiday albums. Please don’t ask me what the lyrics mean; I usually don’t have a clue. But the album is delightful nonetheless — very solstitial.

Posted December 20, 2005 by Mariva in entertaining, entertainment, gifts, holidays, home, music

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Tell a friend Mind-Reading Electronic Question Game

The Mind-Reading Electronic Question Game

Does it fly? Can it cry? Can you eat it? Is it blue? Can you throw it? The Mind-Reading Electronic Question Game is a cool-looking device that can guess an object that you’re thinking of (although I can’t imagine that it could come up with obscure band names and scientific terms). Good for long trips, waiting rooms, bored kids and party ice-breakers.

Or you could just play 20 Questions online for free.

Posted December 19, 2005 by Mariva in entertaining, entertainment, fun, gadgets, games, gifts, home, innovations, social, travel

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