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Everything Is Better With Lasers: A Competition

June 3rd, 2009 by D.Billy

It’s true. That is an actual science fact. From science.

If you are of my generation, there is a very good chance that somewhere — be it in a frame, or shoved in a drawer or shoebox or wallet — there exists a school portrait of you with the infamous laser background that you just HAD to have because it was AWESOME, Mom! Come ON!*
So what we’re gonna do here is, were gonna give you a blank laser background which you’re gonna right-click or control-click and save after you follow that link, and then you’re gonna search Google Images for probably longer than you should ’cause you’re probably at work, and you’re going to use Photoshop or whatever your tool of choice may be to mash that bizness up, creating images that have been astronomically improved through the magic of laser backgroundification.

Then you’ll email them to andiamnotlying(at)gmail(dot)com, we’ll post our favorites, and we will have all wasted similar amounts of time that we will never get back, but we’ll have gotten a laugh out of it. Hopefully.

Deal? Okay. Save that background and get to it!

* P.S. — For your viewing enjoyment, a young lady named Lindsey Weber has been collecting 1990s laser portraits and posting them over at We Have Lasers!!!!!!!!!!. Check it.

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Who You Gonna Call? – Past, Present, and Future Payphones

March 11th, 2009 by D.Billy

I was walking through the Times Square subway station last night, on my way to see Watchmen with Jeff and a few of our fellow thirtysomething nerdboys, when I spotted three identical payphones, side-by-side on a clean tile wall, just begging for something to be tacked on.  So I pulled out a Sharpie and some manila tags that I’ve been carrying for just such an occasion, and designated one phone each for calls to the Past, Present, and Future.

Past | Present | Future
More photos — including a couple with a test subject — after the jump.

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Awesome Engrish: Digital Perm in Chinatown

March 9th, 2009 by Jeff Simmermon

I saw this sign near the intersection of Doyers and Bowery over the weekend – a great bit of Engrish. Someone needs to tell Kool Keith he can get a Digital Perm in Chinatown …

Turns out, a digital perm is a real thing. From Wikipedia:

A digital perm is a perm which uses hot rods with the temperature regulated by a machine, which has a digital display, hence the name. However, the process of the perm is quite analogue. The name “Digital Perm” is also copyrighted by a Japanese company, PAIMORE Co., Ltd.[1] Hair stylists usually call it a “hot perm”, but it is commonly known as a “digital perm”.

So I tried to joke based on ignorance — and my joke was, essentially, “silly Asians.” And it turns out it was me that didn’t know what I was talking about. Not the worst mistake in the world, but when you make this mistake based on a cultural/ethnic assumption, it REALLY makes you look like a dipshit …

Digital Perm

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Time Travel Via Shiny Plastic Marketing: The New York ComicCon

February 8th, 2009 by Jeff Simmermon

I spent most of the NYC ComicCon lurching in circles with my mouth half-open, hunting for a copy of Detective Comics # 587 and spending way too much money on plastic bullshit that reminds me of my childhood. The experience was spectacular.

I haven’t been to a comic book convention since 1991, in Virginia Beach — the whole enterprise was dusty, pasty and pungent. Not now, baby. Now that comics, computers and sci-fi are billion dollar businesses, nerds are out of the basement and blinking in the klieg lights. Pop culture’s always been a byproduct of marketing campaigns, but we are now in a golden age of hype and shiny bullshit.


Today’s thirtysomethings were the target audience back in the ’70s and ’80s when Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and other pop mythologies did the first Triple Lindy into the collective consciousness. Now we’re just old enough to have kids who get just as pumped about Star Wars as we did, and fetishizing fictional universes is a family affair.

Whenever alien archaeologists unearth whatever temples we leave behind, they’re gonna think that Spiderman was our God and stormtroopers were some kind of high priests. Frankly, I’m thrilled. Digging through comic boxes and buckets of chipped action figures gets me all stoked and unstuck in time and I get the same sense of wow, cool wonder that I got when my dad took me to see Star Wars for the first time.

But this thing was for everybody. Really, it was just like the Mermaid Parade except indoors and marginally less sexualized. The people-watching and the costumes were spectacular and totally worth the admission price.

This is my favorite photo from this weekend’s NYC ComicCon, but there’s a lot more after the jump:

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The Dark Knight’s Dumbbells and Hulk’s Green Thumb

August 11th, 2008 by D.Billy

More in the ever-entertaining ‘regular-folks-in-superhero-costumes-performing-mundane-tasks’ idiom, this time from photographer Gregg Segal:

There are more on Gregg’s website, and for other posts documenting our love for this milieu, check out our previous encounters with a down-on-his luck Captain America, and various sci-fi characters in domestic settings.

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Chewbacca Won’t Shut Up About His Modern Classic Kitchen : Sci-Fi Fans at Home

July 15th, 2008 by D.Billy

Continuing our love-fest for extraordinarily costumed people in ordinary settings, we bring you the Land of the Free series from UK-based portrait and documentary photographer Steve Schofield:

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Self-Portrait as Batman

July 10th, 2008 by Jeff Simmermon

I was wasting my time in middle school trying to be friends with this kid who was mean and ugly but had a lot of cool skater gear and one of those haircuts that’s short all over apart from long hair-tentacles that covered his face. Aaron something. I’m sure he’s happily married now and teaches homeless kids to read in his spare time.

But back then, shit was different.

It was the year that Tim Burton’s “Batman” was coming out and I was believing ALL the hype — still got the t-shirt, too. I gave up on Aaron when he smacked some comics out of my hands in front of some girls and said to the whole hallway “what’s so cool about Batman?”

Nothing sounds dumber than trying to answer a rhetorical question, especially when you’re mad. This photo pretty much sums it up the answer:


Taken from Ashlee’s Flickr page, via The Daily Batman.

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Os Gemeos at Deitch Projects… and in Greenpoint?

July 3rd, 2008 by D.Billy

In the Northernmost part of Greenpoint, just about as far up as you can go in Brooklyn without falling in Newtown Creek and drifting across the sludge-channel to Queens, there is an ever-changing graffiti mural on the corner of Clay and McGuinness, on the walls of the Power Brake Service shop. We’ve seen employees on site while artists are laying it down, and even saw an NYPD cruiser stop by for a short chat with a tagger before rolling along without so much as a finger-wagging, so we reckon the building owner either approves of the paint job, or at least isn’t bothered by it.

404 McGuinness

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Captain America Brushes His Teeth With Whiskey.

July 1st, 2008 by D.Billy

It’s a tough time for Captain America. Advances in military technology have made a jacked-up dude with discus skills all but obsolete on the battlefield, the current U.S. administration is one that ol’ Steve Rogers might not be too stoked to shill for, and his rumored cameo in the Louis Leterrier / Ed Norton Incredible Hulk film was cut. And he was also assassinated last year, which will put anyone out of sorts. So until the upcoming Avengers movie gives Cap something worthwhile to do, we’re just going to assume that he’s sitting around his apartment in his robe and Al Gore post-2004 election beard, swigging the fire water and staring longingly at a picture of the Red Skull in front of the TV.

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June 18th, 2008 by D.Billy

Brooklyn-based photographer Meg Wachter has a new series called DUMPED!, wherein she pours miscellaneous oozy, drippy materials — mostly foodstuffs — onto peoples heads and snaps the reactions, framing her shirtless subjects from the shoulders up:

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