Friday, February 8, 2013

5 Things - Kings and Cats Edition

1. You've probably seen this on CNN, the BBC, or any number of other news stations... but I still think it needs to be mentioned! They've found King Richard the III's bones underneath a parking lot in Leicester!

Richard is essentially famous for villainy; he is widely believed to have murdered his two nephews, the original heirs to the throne, after having them named illegitimate and then thrown into the Tower of London. (Although there's some discussion here as to whether or not Henry VII, who overthrew Richard on an exceedingly thin claim to the throne and who almost certainly would have faced serious opposition from those backing the twins, had something to do with it.) Shakespeare described him as a hunchback'd, ambitious gargoyle of a person, the kind of man who dogs bark at in fear and rage when he passes. He murders with impunity, and truly Henry VII was a golden shining saint who came to set England free of his tyranny.

Turns out Richard did have him a touch of the scoliosis. That's... that's about as accurate as Shakespeare got. Which makes sense, if you recall that Shakespeare was writing in the hopes of catching royal favor at a time when Henry VII's granddaughter Elizabeth was on the throne of England.

While Richard wasn't a great king, he wasn't the first and he wasn't the last to ensure that those who stood in his way were... displaced.

Part of the reason I think this is really neat and deserves to be on this list is because they were able to confirm his identity by matching his mitochondrial DNA directly with descendants of his. mDNA is the light of my life, I tell you internet.

I promise eventually I will stop putting bodies on this list. But they keep being so cool!

2. This painting by Ramona Gregory from her shop elementerra over at etsy. She also does ceramics, but I think her paintings are where she really shines. Although that's probably more to do with my brain's odd stall-out when it comes to really appreciating 3D work.

"Treehouse", above, is my favorite. I don't know. I am a fan of greens and browns and blues and all those things make me happy. I am not the biggest fan in the world of abstract art, but when art is both figurative (those are clearly trees and a treehouse) and also a little bit abstracted rather than realistic, I can really enjoy that.

Other things of hers I like? This print of another painting of hers, this mug, and this pretty desert-colored piece.

3. Read this blog. This is Books of Adam, a blog updated occasionally by one of the funniest guys I've never met. The image above is from this particular entry, which had me laughing hard enough to make my side hurt and cringing in second-hand disgust on his behalf the whole time.

Adam lived in Portland, OR for a long time and pretty recently moved to NYC. He's got a good hand for drawing (his drawings of photos that people send in to him are incredible) and a great, funny voice.

Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeead it.

Go on.

I'll wait.

4. This messenger bag, from kormargeux on etsy. I know, I find everything on etsy these days. In my defense, it's more like discovering thousands upon thousands of individual shop sites. They just get lumped together under etsy's wonderful umbrella.

How pretty is this color? This is basically my favorite shade of orange. I wear it all the time and the only sad thing about it is that I don't feel like there is ever enough. Oh sure, there's plenty of orange-y stuff that comes out in the fall, but it's not usually designed with gigantic fashion-knowledgeable tomboys in mind. So you see my problem.

Other purses on etsy I am loving right now; this yellow tote, this printed one, and this small cross-body covered in leaves of my current favorite colors.

5. This photo, from National Geographic Ranger Diaries.

I mean, come on. Look at this guy, just relaxin'.

It comes from Steve Boyes' "Top 25 Photos of the Wilderness #1", an occasionally somewhat big-cat heavy selection of neat photographs. There's some big cats chasing down a rhino, a honey badger casually going to town on a python, cheetahs, a baby lion cub that is probably the cutest thing in the whole world, hummingbirds, an African wild cat that looks like it could have stepped out of any alleyway in the United States... there's rather a lot of neat photos here.

Definitely good to check out. I've lost whole days to the National Geographic website and its photographs.

And articles on archeology.

And also on geology.

Oh, and there was that really cool one about the Mayan temple...

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