The new book by music critic Marc Spitz, Poseur: A Memoir of Downtown New York City in the '90s, out this week from Da Capo Press, is a wistful, candid recounting of Spitz's struggles with career, love and drugs as he made his way into adulthood. The memoir's also enjoyable for its many anecdotes of downtown New York during the 90s, the time when Chloë Sevigny was coming off Kids, the actress Adrienne Shelly was the reigning indie queen, and Bennington graduates seemed to be everywhere. Spitz's anecdotes about the actors and musicians he meets have a wayward namedropping charm—they also, all together, form a fascinating portrait of the [...]
Godzilla vs Mothra 22.61 miles => 3 Hours 43 minutes 32 Seconds
Michael Wallace is a middle-school science teacher who lives in Baltimore. When he’s not teaching his kids about the Mesozoic Era (remember, “meso” means “between”), Wallace rides his bike around the city. Only, while he’s riding his bike, he’s also drawing something, using GPS tracking to trace his routes throughout Baltimore and forming them into different shapes, symbols that become fully detailed pictures. There’s “Jellyfish Invasion,” a giant jellyfish created over 16-plus miles and nearly three hours of riding, and “Gat,” a massive gun that took less than an hour over about 5.5 [...]
How do you map something 238,856 miles away? You can’t just send out a team of surveyors. At least, you couldn’t until relatively recently. Before then, lunar cartographers (technically, selenographers) could only rely on telescopes and their own artistic ability to draw a detailed portrait of the lunar face. They managed some pretty dazzling results.
One of the first widely seen images of the moon (aside from the IRL version), the drawing at left was included by Galileo in a book published in 1610. While he didn’t technically map the moon, these observations were among the first to take note that the moon was not a perfect smooth magic sky-ball [...]
Growing up, my family went on a lot of car trips. A lot of them. Along with our trusty steed, the maroon minivan, my mom, sister and I journeyed all around the country, from Death Valley to Cape Cod, Yellowstone to Galveston, and as many points as we could hit in between. My interest in geography came, in large part, from my role as a navigator on these trips. Examining road maps and AAA guides, I came to appreciate a good highway. Here are seven roads that I believe are worth building a dream road trip around; some of them I've already visited, some are definitely in my future. [...]
The infamous Grenada invasion of 1983 was, in addition to everything else that went wrong, hindered by a wildly out-of-date British map. The map predated the construction of the Richmond Hill Insane Asylum, and in the resulting air strikes the hospital was bombed and a number of patients and staff members killed.
Welcome to the world of cartographic errors, misjudgments and deceptions. Sometimes it's the map that's wrong—sometimes the blame lies with the map's reader. For example, back in 1988, the Philippine media announced that neighboring Malaysia had taken ownership of a group of six small islands in the south of the country. The Turtle Islands, small and [...]
You probably did not think you needed an interactive Google map of the forgotten Sir Mix-a-Lot classic "Posse On Broadway," but you so do. [Via]
The recent "disappearance" of Sandy Island—a long-mapped island in the South Pacific that appears to have never existed—was a fresh reminder that, even with the most modern, state-of-the art, satellites-and-all technology at our disposal, we still may not actually know where everything is. Frankly, we never have—and we've made some pretty awful guesses over the years.
Though it's probably one of the most well-known cartography-related phrases, "Thar Be Dragons" has, as far as we know, only appeared on a single map. That map is the Hunt-Lenox Globe, currently in the New York Public Library's collection. The globe's origins are mysterious; no one knows where it came from or [...]
The Fordham Institute analyzed the fastest-whitening neighborhoods in America between 2000 and 2010, according to census data. Brooklyn had four of the most-whitened zip codes of the top 25 most-whitened zip codes in all of America. We win!
And when you map it out, those four zip codes actually make up just two areas that are contiguous. I've combined them here on Google Maps.
• First: 11238 and 11205. That's Prospect Heights, essentially, to the south, and then where Fort Greene and Clinton Hill meet. Lemme tell you, I was right living right there in the middle, on the Clinton Hill/Fort Greene border, last week, and glorious Clinton Avenue [...]
Chester A. Arthur gets a lot of flak. He deserves most of it. If you're president, you really shouldn't sell off wagonloads of priceless White House furniture at auction. But one accomplishment of Arthur's presidency that gets glossed over in favor of criticism of the “he owned eighty pairs of pants!” closet-shaming variety is that he convened the International Meridian Conference of 1884, with the goal of nailing down "exactly what time is it, anyway?" Although Arthur, I’m sure, put it in much more elegant terms.
The International Meridian Conference designated the Greenwich Meridian as the prime meridian for "time reckoning throughout the world" (it was already the [...]
Have you seen that episode of "The West Wing"? This is a Fun with Maps column, so you know which one I mean. The one where it's Big Block of Cheese Day, and CJ meets with the Organization of Cartographers for Social Equality? If that's not ringing any bells, here's what happens: the organization is promoting an alternative to the Mercator projection, that is, the version of the world map with which you're probably most familiar—it's the one that has Greenland as roughly the same size as Africa. The group would prefer the Peters projection be used, because it doesn't exaggerate the size of Europe and North America at [...]
Greenland is ice, Iceland is nice—and Carcass Island is full of penguins. In this installment, let's investigate some of the more suspicious-sounding islands out there and see whether they live up to their altogether uninviting toponyms.
Name: Deception Island Location: The South Shetland Islands off the Antarctic Peninsula Does it live up to its name? Yes. Deception Island is a nearly perfect circle with a small inlet leading to a geothermal bay—a researcher from SUNY-Geneseo describes it as "a donut with a small bite taken out." The entrance is almost completely obscured; you can only find your way in if you know precisely where to go. Also, [...]
Australian police are warning the people down there to stop using Apple's terrible maps program, because the app is so worthless that people could easily die if they believe the ridiculous maps have any connection to earthly reality. For example, Apple Maps is telling gullible Australians that an entire city, Mildura, is hidden within a vast and terrible wilderness 44 miles away from the actual city.
Police have received calls from motorists who have been stranded in the park without adequate food and water for as long as 24 hours. The park does not have a water supply, police said. Combined with the fact that temperatures in the [...]
More than 5,000 tweets using the #needsoftheoccupiers hashtag were collected from October to December of last year, then geo-located and sorted into top unique needs per occupation site. Tweeted needs included books for New York, garden supplies for San Francisco, Kool-Aid and Crystal Light in Orlando, and in Seattle, after police used pepper spray on protestors, Maalox, which can help neutralize and relieve pepper spray symptoms.
Here’s this morning’s weather map, straight from the Weather Channel website. What do we see? Well, it's going to be a purple line in California, typical for this time of year. Mountain West will see a lot of Hs—how nice for them! And the lumpy, blue-and-red line down the East Coast will stay for the remainder of the week into the weekend. Wait, what? Okay, so maybe when you look at a weather map you have a vague sense of what's being indicated. Like, "hmm, those green clouds look ominous." But how did they get there? And what's going on with those other lines, letters and bumps?
A couple of years ago I came home from a hockey game completely hammered, fired up the ol' eBay and bid on a dozen outdated globes. I didn’t even remember that I'd done this until days later when my email dinged with a notice that I'd been outbid on one of them. Over the span of a week there were ten more notices as I was thankfully outbid again and again. What would I have done with a dozen globes? Where would I have put them all? Would I have had to move into a middle-school library? In the end I won just one of them, a 12" [...]
"Western New England, central and western New York and northeastern Ohio were the important cheese producing regions in 1849. Cheese production was the pioneer form of commercial dairying in the cooler climates. Dairies near large cities sold milk or butter." —Here you will find a U.S.D.A. map that shows where cheese was made on farms in the United States in 1849.
We recently lamented getting around in Queens, but little did we know, somehow, about this.
In Queens, to find locations best Avenues, roads and drives run west; But ways to north or south 'tis plain Are street or place or even lane. While even numbers you meet Upon the west and south of street.