Videos

All by myself from Richard Dunn on Vimeo.

I’m still laughing at this video even as I type up this quick post.  Richard Dunn found himself stranded at an airport after his flight was cancelled last week, so using his iPhone (and a wheelchair and a roll of packing tape) he set out to make a music video.

It starts strong and then it gets better.  Three thumbs up.

(Related: SOUR GRAPES.)

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An & Ria’s first flight

by Elizabeth on May 4, 2014 · 3 comments

in Cool stuff, Videos

Two elderly Dutch ladies fly for the very first time.

Watch the whole thing – it will make you smile like a crazy person!

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I’m the latest fan of this kickass bedroom looper, Kawehi.

She recently created a $3000 Kickstarter project to fund her Robot Heart series – a collection of songs created from a robot girl’s perspective – and exceeded her goal by a further $25,000.  People seem to be really, really into this artist and it’s not hard to understand why when you see her perform.

Her cover of Nirvana’s Heart Shaped Box (above) is the first time I’ve seen another artist attempt this song and do it justice.  Yeah, I’m pretty protective of the original.

Despite her success Kawehi doesn’t take herself so seriously that she won’t hang out in her bedroom with her dogs while she records.  It’s refreshingly “real” for an industry so obsessed with presenting an image, and I love that.  And her dogs, who get progressively funnier during the video above.

And hey, are you into pretty girls who do kickass stuff while singing bad words?

I can’t wait to see what she does next so I’m basically stalking her on social media now.  If you want to do the same here’s where you can find her stuff:

Website: http://kawehi.com/
Facebook:  http://facebook.com/iamkawehi
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/user/VideoHalls
Vimeo:  http://vimeo.com/iamkawehi
Twitter: http://twitter.com/iamkawehi
Instagram:  http://instagram.com/iamkawehi

Happy Friday everyone!

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A boy and his dog

by Elizabeth on March 23, 2014 · 1 comment

in Cool stuff, Stuff, Videos

A  little film about a brave little boy named Owen and his  three-legged dog.

(I know, you’re not crying.  You just have something in your eye.)

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Feelgood video of the day

by Elizabeth on December 11, 2013 · 1 comment

in Cool stuff, Funny Stuff, Videos

She thought she kept hearing fireworks and couldn’t sleep, so we sang to keep her mind preoccupied. In the end, nothing competes with fireworks.

– Benjamin J. Ames and his 4 year old daughter

Shhh!

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32 fingers and 8 thumbs.

by Elizabeth on December 8, 2013 · 1 comment

in Christmas, Music, Videos

Angels We Have Heard on High – The Piano Guys

I’ve been a bit slow getting into the Christmas spirit this year, but I’m glad I took a few minutes out of my scroogecave to watch this video.  These guys are good, and all those string and hammer stunts remind me of Ben Folds when he performs live.

Except I bet Ben swears a bit more than these guys.

 

(Sidenote: I miss my piano.)

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This prank took some serious commitment and attention to detail!  I love how plumbing their mate’s house with warm beer was out of the question…

(I’m just going to go ahead and file this one under “DIY”.)

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Mumford & Sons – Hopeless Wanderer

by Elizabeth on August 27, 2013 · 1 comment

in Music, Videos

Pretty sure this is the greatest music video of the year.  Rolling Stone have written a couple of articles about the making of the video, and how the band members reacted when they saw it for the first time.

If they were to write a story about my reaction there would be references to weeping with joy and hitting ‘replay’ a lot.  Perfection!

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“Two Chips” / An Animated Short from Adam Patch on Vimeo.

In March this year Adam Patch’s wife drank a bottle of wine and then told him a joke.  I wonder if she knew he was recording it?

I think Adam Patch’s wife and I should be friends.

 

Can you top this?  Please leave me a dad joke in the comments, but remember that you will lose points if it’s actually hilarious!

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berternie2

Hooray!

I’m so excited about Friday that I could smooch it riiiiiiight on the kisser.  I’ve had a pretty good week really, but it’s been so frantic that every single night I’ve collapsed into my bed and been fast asleep before my head has hit the pillow.

Let’s hear it for Tim, who has been known to check on me in the middle of the night to make sure I’m breathing.  I guess I really have been sleeping like the dead lately.

Anyway, I thought we could kick off the weekend with some great stuff that’s been happening around the web lately.  Follow me!

Rules for life by The Bloggess.  It’s basically perfect.

The 101 Most Useful Websites of 2012.  Most of these are smaller sites or web apps that do one thing really really well.  There are some excellent resources in here – definitely one to bookmark!

How To Not Be Boring by Belle Henley.

Overcoming Procrastination, Money Problems, Self-Doubt & Other Creative Distractions.  Easy, right?  Not according to Chuck Palahniuk, who once wrote, “People don’t want their lives fixed. Nobody wants their problems solved. Their dramas. Their distractions. Their stories resolved. Their messes cleaned up. Because what would they have left? Just the big scary unknown.”  I would love to see Chuck and Kate Reid debate that one!

And speaking of Speedy Reidy, Kate has prepared a complete guide to this year’s Eurovision.  It has been a long time since I have seen this level of dedication and statistical analysis, and I for one cannot wait.  Will we ever again find a song that can rival Safura’s Drip Drop?  Oh 2010, you smell like lipstick again.

Did you know that MoMA offers online courses?  You can choose between self-guided or instructor-led courses and some of the topics look great.  I wonder if I should tackle one of these for task #8 on my list

Skillshare is another cool resource for learning.  It’s an online marketplace for classes, and anybody with knowledge can apply to share it.  The best part is that the prices are extremely reasonable, and there are heaps of topics that don’t take themselves too seriously.  Courses range from typography to app-building to cooking and even makeup.  Heaps of fun to be had here!

How to network without feeling gross.

Georgia wrote a beautiful post about learning to live simply.

The value of ugliness by Clem Bastow, who writes some of the best opinion pieces out there.

How to break the online cycle of “compare and despair”.

GeoGuessr.com – Hello, gorgeous.  (Farewell, productivity!)

LOVE this DIY concrete letter tutorial by Wit & Whistle!

Today Kellie shared these cute ideas: DIY instagram wrapping paper and spotty jars with nailpolish.

I’ve been craving soups with this cooler weather, and I’m looking forward to trying these recipes for curried split pea soup with coconut milk and spicy sweet potato and peanut soup.  Yummo!

I’ve noticed a bunch of North American bloggers embracing spring and filling their homes with indoor plants.  I adore having greenery inside, so it’s been great to peek at other peoples’ green thumbs!  Check out Katie’s bedroom nook with mini terrariums, Rachel Denbow’s creative planter ideas, Kaylah’s pretty succulents, Elise’s beautiful bedroom plants and also her tips for keeping indoor plants healthy.

Allie Brosh is back with another incredible Hyperbole and a Half.  ALL OF THE FEELINGS.

Portraits of soldiers before, during and after war.

H&M Shows Collection On Plus-Size Model, Doesn’t Make a Big Deal Of It.  Are we living in the future now?  Hooray!

Design*Sponge shares the story of Crayola.  That vintage packaging is RAD.

Thanks to Nova, Kellie and Danielle for finding some of these great links!

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This funny little film popped up on my Facebook feed today and it was too awesome to keep to myself.  Anyone who is familiar with Melbourne’s pretty cityscape is going to love this naughty lizard!

Bless You is what happens when an architect in the skies tires of his creation and decides to spice things up a bit.  (The artist hasn’t actually come out and said this, but maybe the lizard is supposed to symbolise Myki?  You know I’m right about this.)

The man behind this short film is Philip Watts, a Melbourne-based editor with, you know, a handful(!) of TV episodes under his belt. His other passions include cartooning and animation, and lately he’s been putting them all together to make his own little films.  Let’s hope he keeps going!

 

Meanwhile, ever wondered what might happen when a hungry alien with anger management issues meets a faulty vending machine?  Vend Your Anger is a rough approximation of my most recent vending machine tantrum.  Only I’m pretty sure I didn’t look this adorable at the time.

Go and show Philip Watts a little love on Vimeo.  He’s rad.

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autumn

Remember when I used to pour stuff into my paper journals?  I was flicking through my old journals today and this made me want to start again.

 

I don’t even know how to write about my last week.

A bunch of stuff went down at work that I probably shouldn’t share here, and I’ve found myself kind of hiding from the world all weekend to make up for it.  To give you some idea, I am writing this from bed at 4pm on Sunday and there is a strong chance that I will not be changing into grown-up clothes today.

I’ve wanted to share a bunch of stuff here on the blog over the past week but haven’t had a chance to sit down and write.  So how about a great big linky roundup instead?

 

40 Things To Say Before You Die by Jessica Hagy of Forbes.  I’m working on #25 next week.

Beautiful photos of grafted cherry blossoms by Nova, a new bloggy fave.  I’m really excited for Autumn but I love that my Northern Hemisphere pals are starting to see signs of spring!

A love letter to my daughter on the eve of five years.  Keep reading for stunning photography and a dose of optimism.

Hello, I’ve got some sobering news.  My friend Kate has made a super brave decision.  If you’re the sort of person who looks for ways to improve yourself (or your life) you’ll be hooked by Kate’s energy and courage.  She’s rad.

How to crochet a granny square.  If anybody can teach me how to do this without throwing a tantrum, it’s Pip Lincolne.  But I dunno, my tantrums are pretty legendary.

The easiest homemade icecream ever. I’m going to try this soon!  Related: maybe I should finally buy the icecream attachment for my Kitchen Aid…

40 inspiring workplaces of the famously creative.  Mine looks a little like Alexander Calder’s right now, I think I’ll tackle that tonight.

The best smart playlists for organising your iTunes library.  I’m already a bit OCD about the state of my iTunes library, but there are some great tips in here.

 

currently

How about a bonus Currently post to round off the week?  Thanks to Danielle for introducing me to these.

Feeling: Well rested (perhaps too well rested?) but wishing I hadn’t wasted away my weekend.  I guess the last two days have been for recovery rather than productivity but something tells me I’ll get a surge of energy tonight to make up for it.

Watching: Earlier this week I followed a link to this incredible video.  It’s a TED talk by Frans de Waal, an expert in moral behaviour in animals, discussing what happens when you give capuchin monkeys unequal pay for the same task.  It’s absolutely incredible.  The video below is an excerpt, but if you have time to watch the full talk you’ll also hear him talk about cooperation, empathy and consolation in chimpanzees and elephants.

Reading: I’m trying to complete a Diploma in 12 weeks (!), so most of my reading right now is confined to badly-written manuals full of spelling mistakes and poor grammar.  I have so far resisted the urge to return them to my trainer with red pen corrections because I don’t think that will get me extra credit.

Thinking about: Old friends.  About 6 weeks ago I wrote about my old highschool best friend and the difficulties we’ve faced as adults. Since then, despite our best efforts, we’ve found ourselves at another crossroad.  I think I’m finally okay to leave that friendship in high school where it belonged and remember it fondly; some things just shouldn’t be so hard.  It’s taken a long time to find that kind of peace.

I’ve made a conscious decision to say goodbye to people who drag me down.  It even extends to the blogs I subscribe to and the people who pop up on my Twitter feed.  I love a little bit of snark, but I’m through with people who thrive on mocking and negativity.  There is so much more to life than being right.

Looking forward to: Winter!  Melbourne weather has finally taken a cool turn, but the last couple of weeks have been very mild.  I can’t wait for nights where we need an extra doona, hot chocolate and nights spent in front of the heater.  I’m looking forward to breaking in my new Banana Republic trench coat and taking a day trip to find some snow.  I hope that the late start to Autumn means that Winter will stretch a little bit longer too.

Making me happy: I had a particularly hellish day at work last week.  The next day I arrived at work to find that my desk had been decorated with balloons, and a handful of people in the know dropped in just to give me a hug and tell me that I’m doing a great job.  The support of my favourite colleagues has taken years to earn, and to know that it’s there has made all the difference this week.  Living well is the best revenge, and all that.

Because holy crap you guys, I love my job 99% of the time, but there are some days when it can go and suck a big fat bag of dicks.  

 

Right.  Perhaps I should get out of bed?

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The friendship contract

by Elizabeth on March 23, 2013 · 6 comments

in Friends, Life, Music, Videos

About a hundred years ago I had a best friend who I adored with all my heart.

The two of us were inseparable throughout high school and she became like the sister I never had; we were almost adopted into each others’ families.  As teenagers we could walk into the other’s house like we belonged there, help ourselves to the food in the pantry as though it was our own.  Her parents pulled me into line when I deserved it and celebrated my successes with me too.  As we got older her dad vetted the boys I dated and made sure they were up to scratch, and my dad checked the water and oil in her car every time she parked it in my driveway.

We laughed all the time.  We took personal responsibility for each others’ crises and wrote pages of letters in class.  I shared a level of intimacy and comfortability with her that I’ve never really known with anybody else, at least until Tim moved in with me a decade later.

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We both moved to different cities after finishing school, and as you’d expect our relationship started to change.  We made new friendships, and both of us had big grown-up experiences that didn’t include the other.  We were best friends still, but our lives didn’t overlap so much anymore.  The years passed and over time our best friendship was a more symbolic one.

She moved to my city when we were in our early twenties.  I had naively assumed that our friendship would once again become as close and easy as it had been when we were kids, but something wasn’t right between us right from the start.  She would say things that assured me of my place in her life, but then do things that made me doubt whether we were ok.  It was a confusing time for me and we never really talked about it properly.

Something terrible happened between us around that time that brought it all to a head.  There was a huge fight, and when we couldn’t patch things up we went our separate ways.  I don’t think we’ve seen each other since we were about 25, and although there were good reasons for my hurt and anger I have missed her every day since.

camp

Every so often I get tired of missing her and I reach out, hoping like hell that she misses me too.  Each time my efforts have been met with relief and excitement, but whenever it has come time for tough conversations about what happened things have always tapered off into silence.  She told me recently that the guilt she felt made it too difficult, it was easier to give up than to suffer through an autopsy.

But if we can’t talk about what’s broken, what am I to do with these fears of being hurt badly again?  Is it better to protect myself, even if it keeps my old friend at arm’s length?

Am I the one preventing us from moving on?

 

 

I reconnected with another wonderful old schoolfriend recently.  Kate and I went our own ways when we finished school, and although nothing terrible happened between us we drifted apart when we went to uni.  Sixteen years later she recognised my photo on Twitter, reached out to say hello, and now we’re making up for lost time.  It’s such a blessing to have her back in my life and I’m so glad to know her again.

Kate shared an article on her blog that resonated with me deeply: The Friendship Contract.  The author Kate Fridkis writes about her experiences with female friendships and the way that they so often end – in silence.

And the whole thing made me think about how female friendships work. How different they are from romantic attachments, much of the time. We share our souls with each other, our most secret secrets, sometimes, but so often, we don’t know how to fight. We don’t learn how to be hurt by each other and keep going.  […]

I have always had close girlfriends. My friendships with other girls and women have often been profound, supportive, fulfilling, and desperately needed. For a lot of my life, I’ve had a best friend. And inevitably, something has gone wrong, and too often, we have split immediately apart, injured, trailing long filaments of messy emotion, but without attempting to bind ourselves together again. We simply don’t know what to say to each other when things fail. It would be intensely awkward, maybe, to admit that we are angry, fed up, that our feelings are hurt, that we feel neglected or offended. So instead, we just leave. Sometimes, years later, we come together again, once we are fully, separately healed. We politely avoid the subject of our former downfall.

This article was an aha! moment for me.  The uncomfortable truth for me is this: I do know how to fight well – especially with the people I care about.  I don’t seek out conflict, but if something is wrong between me and somebody I love I would rather lay it out and examine it than let it fester in silence.  My ability to put my thoughts and feelings into words are both a gift and a curse, as sometimes I forget that others aren’t quite so willing to fight, to endure a process so painful and risky.

My old best friend and I are trying this conversation again right now, for the first time in years.  I don’t know what to expect, and with so much at stake I’m torn in the knowledge that this conversation could end things for good if we don’t get it right.  I’m trying to balance this love for my old friend with my need for self-protection, and in doing so I’m asking her to engage in a conversation that she might well decide is all too hard.

I’m asking her to let things get worse, in order for us to have a chance to heal.  The difference is that now, finally, I will understand if she says no.  I will know that I did the best I could, and so did she.

The Friendship Contract is something to aspire to for the new relationships I will build as an adult, but Kate’s article made me realise that I can’t ask somebody to simply know how to do this.  There are other needs that must be met, not just my own.

Wish us luck.

 

JAMES BLAKE – RETROGRADE from martin de thurah on Vimeo.

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Filmmaker Bianca Giaever was just a few weeks away from graduation when she began her final class project.  She took creative direction from six year old Asa Baker-Rouse, who gave her some pretty specific advice about her film and about life in general.

The end result is sweet and imaginative, and life-affirming too.  Clear your schedule for the next eight minutes and be prepared to be punched right in the feels.

Bianca Giaever: Facebook | Twitter

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How to Tie a Bow Tie

by Elizabeth on March 8, 2013 · 2 comments

in Cool stuff, Fashion, Videos

This video is the second-best thing I saw on the Internet this week.

The best thing has to be the animated gif version of the video, created by Devoureth.  It makes me want to put my boyfriend in his super-hot suit so that I can practice!

Fancy.

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