7 Quick Takes (5/18/12)

— 1 —

Sign-ups for the Ideological Turing Test are now closed.  I’ve emailed all the participants and they’re hard at work on their entries.  Because of the number of submissions, I couldn’t contact everyone who signed up to confirm they were not participating.

Later today, I’ll have a link to a sample ballot, and I’d appreciate your feedback on any demographic questions you want me to ask.

— 2 —

Remember last weekend, when I mentioned that JT Eberhard was asking people to list the apologetic arguments that really needed answers?  (And then remember that an error prevented you guys from commenting on that post?)  Well, JT has revealed why he was asking: he’s writing an atheist handbook that will address a lot of the questions you guys and others want answered.

Comments are working again over here, so I’m still interested in what Christian arguments deserve better answers from atheists.  And if you want to help out JT, he’s taking title suggestions.  His commenters have ended up in a very nerdy argument on this topic.

— 3 —

A lego artist has put together Dante’s nine circles of Hell.  My favorite is definitely Circle Three:

GLUTTONY: The circle itself is a living abomination, a hellish digestive system revealing horrific faces with mouths ready to devour the gluttons over and over for eternity.

— 4 —

Meanwhile, at my alma mater, some of my classmates and a couple staff have filmed a moving It Gets Better video:

Though after the admissions department pitch (“That’s Why I Chose Yale“), I was really hoping that this, too, would be presented in the form of a musical.  (Or at least would also incorporate the Freestyle Dueling Association).

— 5 —

Cowbirds in Love has an amusing transhumanist-related cartoon.  Here’s how it begins:

(click the image to see how it ends).

— 6 —

I don’t really have any strong opinions about this article from GQ where Eric Puchner seeks out a cooler version of himself.  I just really liked this anecdote:

For some reason, I told Kyle about how I’d asked my daughter recently what she wanted to be for Halloween, and she’d said “a confused chicken.” This apparently meant dressing up like a chicken but pretending not to know what she was. I couldn’t help thinking she’d hit upon a deep ontological truth: the idea that who you were would be obvious to everyone else but yourself.

— 7 —

I was skeptical about the appeal of this video of Alan Rickman making tea in super slow motion, but it does turn out to be pretty entrancing.  If you find your interest waning, you may want to skip to 4:10.

(h/t Gizmodo)

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  • jen

    #5 makes me want to see if i can light things on fire with my glasses tomorrow!

    you always have the most interesting quick takes.

  • Hibernia86

    Does Yale actually need to recruit students? I thought they were the second most prestigious college in America after Harvard (sorry Leah haha 😉 )

    • leahlibresco

      Some people end up torn, I know I was (though not by blechy Harvard, of course). But honestly, there are more than enough interesting undergrads to go around. They actually turned the pitch over to undergrads, who wrote, directed, and filmed the whole thing. I’m in the video giving the singer a high five when he sings about residential colleges. (And in the background with an ax in the freestyle dueling scene).

  • deiseach

    Dante nit-picking here: the Lego models are very good, but they’re not the Inferno, First Canto of “The Divine Comedy” by Dante Alighieri of Florence, circa 1321, but rather more “Dante’s Inferno” by Visceral Games/Electronic Arts, 2010. He even admits that he didn’t read the book, just looked up some descriptions on various websites.

    So, for not going to the source documents, a tsk! tsk! and included finger-wagging from Deiseach.

    • leahlibresco

      Oh dear! I thought some of the descriptions sounded unfamiliar, but it’s been a long time since I read the Inferno, so I figured a lack of recognition was about equally likely either the world where the depictions were accurate or where they were wrong.

      • deiseach

        Ah, that was more me being “Kids nowadays!” than serious lamenting over the state of education, but I do take my Dante seriously enough to go “No, that’s not it” when they get the circles wrong.

        It’s always fun to figure out which circle one is going to end up in, as to which is one’s besetting sin – such as this quiz – although I suppose “fun” may not exactly be the word. But definitely I knew something was wrong with his depiction of gluttony (since with my sweet tooth, that’s a very good candidate for my future state in eternity).

  • Loud

    Wow! I nefer realized all the different movements our hands make. I just never thought about it till now. When Alan Rickman looked up and saw the camera he paused, I thought for sure that the video had ended because he wasn’t moving, but then I saw the glass sliding across the table….. Priceless! All I could think of when he tossed em both was “He is going to smash his glasses case when the table falls on top of it” Lol!!!!…. yeah, I need to get a hobby.

  • Cous

    haha “Epic Tea Time.” Watching that is like a meditation. There are also soundtracked versions for the less meditatively-inclined (Duck Sauce fans, skip to 6:27).
    While it may lack the universal appeal of Alan Rickman, Jello is also pretty cool to watchin high speed slow-mo.