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things that just are

Friday, May 28, 2004

Verizon won't forgive man's debt on donated cell phone

Lansing, MI: A senior citizen who donated his cellphone to charity, forgot to cancel the service, and subsequently got stuck with a $1,200 bill after somebody else got the phone and racked up tons of charges, Verizon Wireless says that they’re not going to let things slide and that Harold Dunn will have to pay up.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Video game fans dance off extra pounds

Dance Dance Revolution players burn extra pounds along with their quarters. Weight loss is an unexpected benefit of a game designed for dance music... continued at cnn.com

Monday, May 24, 2004

Mickey Mouse on State Street

Through July, 15 giant, 700 lb. statues of Mickey Mouse will be on display on State Street. The 6-foot-tall mice were created to celebrate Mickey's 75th birthday. The statues debuted in Orlando in November, which was the 75th anniversary of the release of the Mickey Mouse short, Steamboat Willie. They will head to Washington D.C. and then go to New York City before being auctioned for charity. Mickey Mouse's creator, Walt Disney, was born in Chicago in 1901 and studied at the Academy of Fine Arts here. Each mouse in the display has been designed by a celebrity, including Tom Hanks, Tony Hawk, and Ben Affleck.

A gallery of all the statues.

From boingboing.net

Friday, May 07, 2004

Nintendo NES Controller Belt Buckles
The belt you always wanted.

Thursday, May 06, 2004

Yahoo! News - Pac-Man Game to Jump from Computer to City Streets

NEW YORK (Reuters) - "Life imitates art far more than art imitates life," Oscar Wilde once wrote. Little did he know that life would eventually also imitate video games.

New York University students plan to stage a real, live Pac-Man game on Saturday in the streets of Greenwich Village, as part of a project exploring how computer games work when transplanted into real-world settings.

In the hugely popular 1980s game that became a cultural icon, Pac-Man, a yellow circle with a wedge removed for his mouth, gobbled up dots while evading ghostly rivals Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde who also try to gobble him.

This weekend a man in a yellow costume will weave through the streets collecting dots while being pursued by people dressed in ghost outfits whose aim is to stop him before he gathers all the dots.

The characters' movements will be controlled by five interactive telecommunications students, who will instruct them via cell phones from a room with a game map. They will use the map to update the latest position of the players and to see where to send them next.

Frank Lantz, the New York University professor who assigned the project, said his "big games" class is aimed at helping students think of new ways to design games in different spaces.

"We're invading an existing public space and transforming it into a game space," said Lantz. "Video games were often very solitary, so part of the impulse (behind the project) is to explore more types of social interaction."

Perhaps Pac-Man will be glad he waited 25 years before socially interacting with hurried New Yorkers. All will be revealed on Web site (http://www.pacmanhattan.com) after the game.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Woman finds live frog in airline food

Complain all you want about airline food — you've got nothing on the New Zealand woman who was accidentally served a live frog on her Qantas flight between Australia and New Zealand. The woman removed the lid from the salad served with her airline meal, and found a whistling tree frog sitting on a cucumber slice, reports The New Zealand Herald.

The passenger replaced the lid to trap the amphibian, and notified the flight crew. "There was a bit of consternation by the passenger who called back the attendant," Fergus Small of New Zealand's Ministry of Agriculture tells the BBC. The crew contacted Australia's Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry Quarantine Service, which was waiting for the flight when it arrived in Melbourne. Saying the frog "could carry parasites or other diseases that posed a danger to native frogs or even other species," the ministry removed the frog from the plane and "euthanized" it by putting it in a freezer.

Since the incident in February, Qantas says it has changed its lettuce supplier and adopted "additional procedures into the salad supply process." Tree frogs are common in the area where the lettuce was grown, officials told The Herald.
.: USA TODAY/AP Posted at 6:35 a.m. ET

and you thought a bug in your salad was bad!

The Cubs/White Sox Rivalry is nicely depicted in this short clip: Northsiders -vs- Southsiders