December 15-21: Onlineby Fiona Rae
Move over Gangam Style; your Hobbit name; and US stand-up Tig Notaro.
MIND THE GAP: Goodbye Gangnam Style, there’s a new viral internet hit in town, and it has a message. Dumb Ways to Die is a super-cute song and animated video created by an advertising agency in Melbourne to encourage train safety. At time of writing, it had been watched more than 30 million times on YouTube, or you can see it at dumbwaystodie.com. Naturally, there are parodies, including Cool Things to Find, featuring the Curiosity Rover.
TAKE THAT, FRANKLIN RD: Thought you were doing okay with that string of Christmas icicle lights on the front porch? Here’s a house in California that is decorated with 56,100 computer-controlled LED lights.
LIGHT-EMITTING DUDES: It’s not Christmasy, but these guys in illuminated suits going all parkour in Bangkok are really cool.
SAY MY NAME: In the coming weeks, it might be useful to have a Lord of the Rings name. At this Hobbit Name Generator, Fiona Rae is, for example, Pansy Brambleburr of Bindbale Wood. Or, Dangwen Darnswool of Fair Downs here. Actually, elves are cooler, aren’t they? Gilraen Silimaurë it is!
TRAGI-COMIC: It’s funny how comedy works. When US stand-up Tig Notaro delivered a devastating, partly improvised set about her recent cancer diagnosis at a small club in Los Angeles (“Good evening, hello. I have cancer. How are you?”), she became an overnight viral star. Louis CK, who went on after her, said it was “one of the few truly great, masterful stand-up sets” he’d ever seen. The set is now available in iTunes (costs $4.99); or you can hear Tig in Professor Blastoff, a Funny or Die podcast. Notaro and Louis CK were interviewed on NPR programme Fresh Air as well.
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