Here You Go

So imagine you are walking down the streets of Pittsburgh, it is pouring rain, you are about to become soaking wet... when some kind stranger hands you an umbrella.  A random act of kindness... yes, but there is one string attached.  The umbrella comes with a note that says you are now responsible for paying forward an additional act of kindness. When you are done, you are instructed to share your story via a prepaid postcard.  You can read all the postcards on the Here You Go blog.

My favorite part of this is that most of the postcards are all wet, as if people were inspired to go out and do their good deeds immediately.

Obsessive Consumption Book

When I got home from work I was happy to find Kate Bingaman-Burt's book Obsessive Consumption on my doorstep.  I opened it to check out a few sketches, but ended up completely enthralled and reading it cover to cover.  The book is based on Kate's blog of the same name, where she keeps sketches of objects that she a has bought.  The purchases documented range from a hairclip for grandma ($5.95) (and one of my favorite purchases in the book) to a faux Eames Lounger ($50.00).  The purchase patterns themselves are very interesting as they span an number of years and life stages (student, marriage, dog, etc) which make you reminisce about your own levels of financial freedoms, or lack there of, over time.  The best part, to me, is the little notes that accompany a lot of the drawings.  A four colour click pen itself is not a very interesting purchase, but when accompanied by the fact that it was purchased to pay bills, it actually becomes very entertaining.  I adored the book, and the journey that it took me on.

Bank Notes

Ken Habarta has just written a book about the notes that people use to rob banks. He has been posting daily examples of the notes on the blog Bank Notes. Each note is accompanied by a picture of the robber and an icon indicating if the robbery was successful or not. The website is searchable, in case you are only interested in robberies involving polite notes (search for the word "thanks" and "please"). From what I can gather, there is not much of an art to writing a robbery note. The website even has a random bank note generator... in case you are in a hurry.

Question Suggestions

One of the joys of using a search engine that gives auto suggestions based on popular searches, is that it gives you a small glimpse into the collective mind. If you've never tried this, stop what you're doing, go to your favorite search engine (I recommend and start to type a question. With each letter you type, the search engine provides new suggestions based on what everyone else is searching for. The results are almost always both fascinating and funny. Justin Talbot has put together a website called Question Suggestions which features his daily explorations into the human psyche through half formulated search questions.

I Love You More Than...


I Love Your More Than Blank is a blog  by Paperwhite studio that encourages readers to write in with something personal that ends the sentence: I love you more than ____.  They are collecting suggestions via email up until Valentine's Day, when they plan to turn the entries into a surprise.  It is lovely to read through the hearts.  Some are sweet and others are funny.  It's easy to find one that you relate to. (Found through A Cup of Jo).

Daily Routines

I just discovered an endearing blog called Daily Routines.  It collects stories about how artists, writers and other interesting people organize their days.  It is a nice little glimpse into people's creative processes. I can't stop reading them.  More importantly, I can't stop wondering how so many creative people are so disciplined.  Gosh, doesn't anyone sleep in?  I would actually read this blog even more if there were more mundane, everyday people writing in. It's always so fascinating to get a look into other people's daily routines and methodologies.

Designing The News


I'm enjoying Dave Bowker's website, Designing The News.  Dave describes the site as "A series of experiments which visually explore the news in various ways to encourage new ways of seeing a predominantly text based medium."  David has a cool throwing-it-out-there approach to his ideas which I appreciate.

I was attracted to his most recent visualization experiment, One Week of The Guardian: Wednesday.  Each circle represents a different news category, arranged from the center outwards according to each category's total word count.  His idea expands out to link the category rankings from one day to another to track a whole year's worth of news stories.  This is a cool overall visualization.  It reminds me a bit of the Digg Labs work, but with a rockn' retro color scheme.

Deleted Images


Are you looking through your fireworks photos this morning and wondering 'What was I thinking trying to take photos in the dark without a tripod'?  Well before you hit the Delete button on those blurry, out of focus and misdirected photos, check out this new blog called Deleted Images.  It's a collection of to-be-deleted images which on their own are just examples of bad photography, but together as a collection become something very artistic.