Monday, August 30, 2010

On the Road

Any of you guys live near Decatur, Georgia? If so, come on down to the Decatur Book Festival this weekend! I'll be there on Sunday, September 5th, talking about my many butt-kicking heroines.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Hmmm. I Wonder Where These Girls Got the Idea

Two Swedish schoolgirls were recently fined $270 when it was discovered they had bugged the teachers' lounge at their school. Figuring a little insider information might come in handy some day, they planned to listen in on a conference in which students' grades were decided.

Too bad one of them had the brilliant idea of posting the details of their plot on Facebook.

I hope the rest of you use your powers for good--not evil! Ha.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I Can't Help Myself

Not only are they faster than us, they're cleaner, too.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Our Ancestors Sure Were Tacky

(Above: The color-reconstructed Alexander Sarcophagus. Below: The "original.")

Okay, they're not my ancestors, and they're probably not yours. But you get the idea.

So all those beautiful white Greek and Roman statues you see in museums? They weren't always so classy. No, back in the day, they were garishly painted. (So were all those lovely temples, I'm afraid.) This isn't news to me, and it may not be news for you. But it's still a bit shocking to see color reconstructions of ancient artworks.

Or maybe it's just me. What do you think?

See more examples here

Monday, August 23, 2010

Watch Out, Laura!

Apparently squid can FLY! This is a truly terrifying turn of events. (Thanks, RL!!)

Laura Dekker Sails!

Fourteen-year-old Laura Dekker may soon be the youngest person to sail solo around the world! As many of you know, the Dutch government tried to prevent Laura from living her dream. (And let's be honest, it is pretty darn risky.) For months she was forced to live under the guardianship of Dutch child protective agencies. But now she's free, and her boat, the Guppy, set sail from Gibraltar on Saturday!

You can read more here, and FOLLOW THE GUPPY on its way around the world on Laura's website!

Bon voyage, Laura! The Irregulars are with you in spirit!

Thanks to everyone who sent me links and updates on Laura!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Humans vs Rats

Friday, August 20, 2010

Horseshoe Crabs Freak Me Out

OK, so this is the National Geographic photo of the day, and they'll probably hunt me down and riddle my body with elephant tranquilizer darts if they find out I posted it.

But I just had to ask . . . Do you find horseshoe crabs as creepy as I do?

I've heard hundreds of thousands of them swarm certain beaches in New York Harbor every spring. I gotta go see that sometime.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Eternal Ones is Out in the UK and Australia!

Yay! That is an emu, isn't it?

Thirteen-Year-Old Conquers the Fashion World

Here's something I've been meaning to write about for ages. Did you know that one of the most popular and influential fashion blogs on the Internet is written by a thirteen-year-old girl?

Her name is Tavi Gevinson, and she started The Style Rookie when she was eleven. Today, her blog is read by designers, magazine editors, and anyone else who takes fashion seriously. (I like to think of her as a real-life Betty Bent.)

When The Style Rookie first began attracting tens of thousands of readers, many accused Tavi of being a fraud. The observations and writing were too sophisticated and clever to be the musings of a young girl, they said. ("They" being people who hadn't met many thirteen-year-old girls.)

These days, the diva who describes herself as a "tiny 13-year-old dork that sits inside all day wearing awkward jackets and pretty hats" can be seen on the front row of many a fashion show. And she's proof of just how much can be accomplished if you ignore all the naysayers and just do what you love!

Read more about Tavi here.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

New York Times Best Seller!

Oh wow. The Eternal Ones just made the New York Times Best Sellers List! (Week of 8/29)

I can't quite believe it! Thanks to everyone who bought the book!

Late At Night, He Practices Without the Gym Mats and Safety Gear

Thirteen-year-old Hibiki Kono lives in Cambridge, England. In this video, he demonstrates the use of his latest invention. Going by all the safety gear on display, I'm guessing the film was made at Hibiki's school.

Here's my question: So where does Hibiki go when no one is watching?

Monday, August 16, 2010

Public Service Announcement

Think your school day starts way too early? You may be right! Take this article to your principal!

Am I Sick, or Is This Funny?

Google Street View is a never-ending source of entertainment. And TERROR! Recently, people viewing the English town of Worcester were horrified to see the motionless body of a girl lying face-down in the road! Had the Google Street Van captured the evidence of a terrible crime/accident?

Shocked good Samaritans all over the world insisted on an investigation.

Here's what they uncovered . . . the body belonged to a 10-year-old girl named Azura Beebeejaun. And she couldn't be more alive. Here's what she told a British newspaper . . .

"I fell over while I was playing with my friend and thought it would be funny to play dead. I'm quite chuffed I'm on the Internet."

And a STAR! Azura, you deserve to be in show biz!

See the image that started the controversy here. And be sure to check out the other amazing Google Street View finds listed at the bottom of the article. My favorite? The Man in White.

Monday, August 09, 2010

The Eternal Ones Comes Out TOMORROW!

Wow. It's hard to believe that the day is finally here! It feels like The Eternal Ones has been in the works for ages. And now it will be on bookstore shelves. I'm thrilled and terrified! (Forget that. I'm not scared of ANYTHING! Ha.)

I would like to thank my Kiki Strike blog readers. I'm sure you're all eager for The Darkness Dwellers (Kiki 3), but you should know that you help make ALL of my books possible. Writing can be a very lonely profession, but I've always been able to stop by Ananka's Diary for a visit with a few hundred of my closest friends. (And yes, I do consider you all friends!) Your support is incredibly important to me--both personally and professionally.

As for the few of you who have been with the blog since its early days (Kitty, Falcon, Jin Ai, BL--sorry if I've missed anyone), I just want you guys to know that I'm truly in your debt.

So thanks again, everyone!

Insect Sushi

(Photos of more tasty treats here!)

Got a dinner party coming up? Interested in learning how to craft such culinary delights for your friends and family? Check out Japanese author Shoichi Uchiyama's book of 79 insect recipes. According to the Telegraph . . .

The onset of autumn in Japan means that spiders are presently Shoichi Uchiyama's preferred insect dish, gently boiled and served on a bed of rice. The meat, he said, is soft and reminiscent of simmered soy beans.

"Domestic spiders are large at this time of year and the females are carrying their young in their stomachs, so they're both tasty and healthy."

You know, I find insects and spiders as unappetizing as most Americans. But I have a feeling we'll all be eating them in the future. They're cheap, plentiful, and packed with nutrients. And farming insects would be much easier on the environment than raising cattle, pigs, or poultry.

So all I can say is **holding nose** bon appetit!

Friday, August 06, 2010

Monstrous Wildlife

Monstrous Wildlife from Frank Robnik on Vimeo.

Stay out of Nevada!

Possum Pedicure

Words fail me. Thanks, Kitty!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

I've Finally Found the Perfect Sport

I'm happy to hear that competitive lockpicking (called "locksport") is becoming more and more popular . . .

Locksport fans compete in several formats, including head-to-head contests that determine the fastest lock picker. In the so-called Locksport Wizard, each contestant is given a burlap sack containing an identical set of locks and is required to blindly pick them using only tools they have put in the sack.

In other challenges, participants have to pick their way out of handcuffs before attempting to defeat a set of locks. There also are competitions to disassemble locks and reassemble them properly.

This sounds like just the kind of exercise I've been looking for! Maybe I should start my own club.

Read more here.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Adorable . . . or Disgusting?

Baby tarantulas!

From Tunedbeat, who has some amazing spider photos.

Here's something else I just found . . .