The Inca Tern is another awesome animal that grows its own enviable mustache. These dapper birds are found along the rocky coasts of Peru and Chile. We were delighted to learn that both male and female birds sport the same curling white feather mustache, because girls like stylish mustaches too.
Each of these photos was taken by a different photographer. Visit My Modern Metropolis for complete credits and even more photos of the debonair Inca Tern.
A double decker bus unloads passengers at 7th and Olive, Los Angeles, 1937.
A new law in Germany creates a third sex category on birth records. It could seem like an obvious solution to some problems of intersex: If some babies are born with bodies that are neither clearly male nor female, then it seems there should be some category beside “male” or “female.”
News reports from Der Spiegel, the Wall Street Journal and ABC News have characterized the new German legislation as providing an “option,” suggesting that the sex identification of infants will simply be a matter of parental choice.
In the past, by contrast, parents have generally relied on physicians to “fix” intersex children through the use of surgical and hormonal sex “normalizations.” (For example, this has sometimes included surgical sex reassignment for baby boys born with very small penises.) With the new category introduced by German law, the ambiguity presented by infants with atypical sex anatomies can be managed simply with a new label.
Read more. [Image: Katelyn Kenderdine/Flickr]
Chasing Light in Antelope Canyon
Tucked away along the northern border of Arizona lies Antelope Canyon, one of the most visited—and photographed—locations in the American Southwest. Located on Navajo land, the landform is technically classified as a slot canyon, or a narrow canyon that is significantly deeper than it is wide. Like all slot canyons, Antelope Canyon was formed by flash floods rushing through underground crevices. Over time, the waters eroded the rock into the smooth, flowing landform seen today.
Antelope Canyon is divided into two sections, upper and lower, known in the native Navajo language as Tsé bighánílíní (“the place where water runs through rocks”) and Hazdistazí (“spiral rock arches”), respectively. The Canyon’s narrow top opening restricts the amount of sunlight than can enter, but results in a few dazzling beams that make it to the canyon floor. These beams, along with the canyon’s intense red glow and flowing lines, have made Antelope Canyon especially appealing to those Instagrammers adventurous enough to make the trek.
This awesome wrought iron 1970 Volkswagen Beetle is the work of three artists at Croatian metal shop MG Vrbanus. The trio of craftsmen spent 3,500 hours on their creation and used 5,000 Swarovski crystals and hundreds of pounds of wrought iron and gold leaf to achieve the gaudy masterpiece seen here.
The piece began with a design sketched onto the VW’s sheet metal body, which was then removed, one section at a time, and replaced with designs inspired by ornate metal fencing. The work was done with such precision and care that the Beetle’s original windows still fit in the wrought iron body. And you can see the car’s machinery beneath it’s ultra fancy exterior.
This magnificent little car is available as a rental for weddings.
Here’s a delightfully abrasive twist on papercraft. Artist and designer Mandy Smith used sandpaper to create these miniature versions of everyday objects. We’re particularly taken with the fact that each of these adorable objects would be more than a little troublesome if they were put to use as real life objects - the toilet paper in particular. Ouch!
Photos by Bruno Drummond.
Korean artist Seung Mo Park (previously featured here) has created a new series of incredibly intricate sculptures, this time using countless layers of aluminum wire tightly wrapped around fiberglass forms.
"The works shown here are part of the Brooklyn-based artist’s Human series where he recreates the delicate wrinkles and folds of clothing as well as the sinuous musculature of the human body in metallic layers reminiscent of tree rings.”
Visit Colossal to view more pieces from this stunning series.
In an episode of Friends, Monica becomes obsessed with a light switch that, according to Joey, does “nothing.” Monica, convinced that it must control something in the apartment (“They wouldn’t have put it there if it didn’t do something!”), begins an obsessive hunt to uncover what the switch does. Though it’s scarcely more than a silly subplot, Monica’s dilemma exposes an interesting household problem: Every home seems to have a mysterious light switch somewhere—near the back door, next to the porch light, at the basement stairs, along a row in the den. A light switch that does nothing.
The light switch is a lovely, ordinary thing. You can look at one and understand intuitively that the up position means on and the down position means off. The panel sits flush against the wall, elegant in its unobtrusiveness. The placement of light switches is so familiar that in the dark, you can feel around at the standard height (four feet from the ground) until you find the right panel to illuminate an unfamiliar bathroom.
Light switches exemplify familiar design, which, according to Henry Petroski’s Small Things Considered: Why There Is No Perfect Design, is a name for things that are “so predictable in their form and function that we do not give them a second thought.” We haven’t given light switches much thought for nearly a century now.
Read more. [Image: Kelly Sikkema/Flickr]