Ordinal's Cabinet of Ephemera

For longer nonsense about Second Life, please see An Engine Fit For My Proceeding, and for shorter, see my Twitterings.

(via Christmas Guns | Retronaut)
The Chromatic Typewriter

“…what a pleasant change from the labourer’s unvarying meal of bread, lard, and bacon, or bread and lard without bacon, or bread without lard or bacon, would be a good dish of fried cockchafers or grasshoppers.”

“A skeuomorph, pronounced /ˈskjuːəmɔɹf/ skew-ə-morf, or skeuomorphism (Greek: skeuos—vessel or tool, morphe—shape) is a derivative object that retains ornamental design cues to a structure that was necessary in the original. Skeuomorphs may be deliberately employed to make the new look comfortably old and familiar, such as copper cladding on zinc pennies or computer printed postage with circular town name and cancellation lines.”

(via Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - Handwritten Dictionary of Words, 1984)

“A paraprosdokian (pronounced /pærəprɒsˈdoʊki.ən/) is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part. It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect, sometimes producing an anticlimax. For this reason, it is extremely popular among comedians and satirists.”

The proper usage of a Stove Top/Moka Pot (by James Hoffmann)

Godflesh (by Midnight - digital)

BBC News - Corsham Court Oriental plane 'most spreading tree in UK'

The Battle of Babylondon was a site-specific, interactive performance staged in association with the upcoming exhibition ‘Out of this World: Science Fiction but not as you know it’ at the British Library, Fri 20 May 2011 - Sun 25 Sep 2011.

Derived from the 1990 science fiction novel The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling, the performance plunged the audience into the summer of 1855, in an alternate, politically-charged, Steampunk London. The unrest between the New Radicals, the elitist political party in power, and the Anarchists, a motley crew of Luddites and Communists, had reached a fever pitch, and audiences were asked to choose a side to champion, making their way through a series of challenges, missions, and confrontations, in order to determine who would control the city and its fate. This performance took place on Friday, April 15, 2011, on a construction site in Canary Wharf, the dockside location of a key battle scene in The Difference Engine.

Published between about 1660 and 1850, these highly ephemeral “school pieces” were increasingly popular in the second half of the eighteenth century, when they were published in large numbers, a development contemporary with the expansion of the children’s book trade. Children’s booksellers began to issue writing sheets at this time; popular printsellers continued to do so. For some surviving sheets, the engraver and / or the writing master responsible for the design can be identified, although in many cases the former would be the printseller or one of his craftsmen. (via BibliOdyssey: Writing Blanks)
(via moleskine_users: black, gray & yellow liners)

A clockwork automaton replica of Pushkin writes with a fountain pen (by AlainMargot)

“Petrie remains a controversial figure for his pro-eugenics views and opinions on other social topics, which spilled over into his disputes with the British Museum’s Egyptology expert, E. A. Wallis Budge. Budge’s contention that the religion of the Egyptians was essentially identical to the religions of the people of northeastern and central Africa was regarded by his colleagues as impossible, since all but a few followed Petrie in his contention that the culture of Ancient Egypt was derived from an invading Caucasian “Dynastic Race” which had conquered Egypt in late prehistory and introduced the Pharaonic culture (Trigger, 1994). Petrie was a dedicated follower of eugenics, believing that there was no such thing as cultural or social innovation in human society, but rather that all social change is the result of biological change, such as migration and foreign conquest resulting in interbreeding. Petrie claimed that his “Dynastic Race”, in which he never ceased to believe, was a “fine” Caucasian race which entered Egypt from the south in late predynastic times, conquered the “inferior” and “exhausted” “mulatto” race which then inhabited Egypt, and slowly introduced the finer Dynastic civilization as they interbred with the inferior indigenous people (Silberman, 1999). Petrie, who was also affiliated with a variety of far right-wing groups and anti-democratic thought in England and was a dedicated believer in the superiority of the Northern peoples over the Latinate and Southern peoples (Silberman, 1999), derided Budge’s belief that the ancient Egyptians were an African people with roots in eastern Africa as impossible and “unscientific”, as did his followers.”

In Japanese folklore, tapirs can eat people’s dreams. (via Tapir - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)