Porsche Museum

This beautiful, modern, VERY German-looking building is in Stuttgart and will house the Porsche Museum upon its completion. The building is designed by Delugan Meissl Architects of Vienna. The museum will have 5,600 sq. m of exhibition space (no I will not calculate it in square footage) to showcase 80 cars from the famous manufacturer. In addition to a rotating array of car-related exhibits the museum will house workshops, a gift shop, the Porsche archive, and a restaurant and café. Happy German fun for the whole family.


Kahtoola Microspikes

So I'm going to go ahead and preface this by saying that if you live on or near Hennepin Ave. and 26th St. South in Minneapolis, you should not buy these. If you do, it will really infringe on the enjoyment I get from my Saturday morning winter passtime of watching people fall and drop things.

For everyone else, these lightweight 3/8" spikes will strap on to your sneakers or loafers and dramatically increase your odds of not falling in slippery winter conditions and looking like a jerk. $59 at the Kahtoola online store.

See, then judge, the Thunder

So we're all about innovation and espousing a unique brand of thinking -- possibly living -- here at Newrosis. The very nature of said espousal usually leads us beyond the boundaries within which daily life is lived. Fringe elements. Unknown goodness existing somewhere beyond where we're used to finding it. It's not that the stuff we talk about is wholly alternative or revolutionary (Nerf, Puma, and OJ Simpson are as much a part of the pop culture lexicon as Silly Putty and Betty Boop), but rather that the way we talk about these things might shine a new light upon them -- or possibly point out how they've shown a new light upon themselves.

With that said, sometimes our brand of goodness comes in the form of the biggest summer blockbuster that nobody has seen. Don't get us wrong; we like Lars and the Real Girl and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly as much as the next guys, but we're also not ashamed to admit when a product of pop culture nips perfection in the ass and saves some in it's lunch pail for later.

Bearing all that in mind, we recommend that you immediately stop reading this blog and begin watching TROPIC THUNDER...thrice!

If you've left to watch the movie, good. If not, then I fear we have some further convincing to do. However, if the very mention of something popular makes you want to leave this blog, never to return, then go and please don't return. Good riddance. We spit in your general direction. Say hi to Jim Jarmusch for us.

If you're still here and looking for a movie review before you make your decision, then you're SOL too, because we're not in that game. What we are doing is giving you permission to check-it-out and laugh until you fart. Seriously. You haven't laughed hard enough at Tropic Thunder until you've farted. That is how funny the movie is. While the first time through is amazing -- those who deal in cheap cliches might say "gut-busting" -- it's the second and third times that inspire the gastronomic anomaly of the laughing-fart combination. Because of this, you should probably make sure you don't watch the movie in mixed company.

If you need further convincing (not to mention proof of why RDjr should probably be considered for an Oscar...and the very reason he won't be) then look closely at this poster.

Sophomoric. Juvenile. Rakish. Thoroughly unlike the movie.

So just see it already. Until then, we'll see you in our eyes-closed-movies.

Prison Orange Juice Just Got Really Weird

This is my first Newrosis post. Accordingly, it gives me anxiety...Mainly because four readers is three more than my other blog.

Anyway, so I'm blogging from my couch while watching TV, which usually causes me to blog not at all. But today the TV actually gave me slight inspiration...In the form of Orenthal James Simpson. Yep. For those of you sitting at work who haven't paid mind to our recommendations of CNN.com and/or ESPN.com as Internet essentials -- AKA sites that should always be open on your work computer -- The Juice had his armed robbery/kidnapping sentencing hearing today. I wasn't intending to watch it, but after Ellen and The Price is Right, I turned to CNN not so much for the news as to avoid soap operas...Plus, that Don Lemmon, is just so cute, isn't he?

So, yeah, CNN is on, more or less in the background, and for the first time this week they cut away from the newscast to something other than the automaker bailout hearings. Just like that, we're in Vegas watching the judge (this is live mind you) lecturing OJ Simpson about just how wrong it was to storm into a room with a gun and spout some naughty language. Really? You can't do that even if you're OJ?

I was immediately engaged. The judge, Jackie Glass (doesn't OJ always get the best names assigned to his cases?) was basically scolding him...It was some serious mom-laying-into-child-type verbal fury; very demeaning stuff. Anyway, as she berates OJ--basically for being an idiot--the camera is panning around the court room and I swear everyone but Kato Kaelin is there. The Goldmans, his kids, a big chunk of the cast from 1994. Just surreal. And then there's OJ, at the front, just glazed over and aloof. It was compelling television in the same low-brow, voyeuristic way that Cops is compelling television.

Well, after far too long Judge Jackie Glass gets to the point and reads the supremely multifaceted sentence, which, when added-up, amounts to 15 years in prison...At least 9 of which would be served. Whopping, right? OJ finally going to prison?

I duly note that OJ has finally gotten what he deserves...kinda. I thus proceed to inform one or two people of the outcome and then I prepare to find an rerun of Law and Order or NCIS, ready to let OJ drift into the recesses of my brain where he belongs. Well, CNN doesn't give me the chance. Before I can settle on a new program, they cut to OJ's courtroom apology taped earlier in the afternoon (embedded below). At first I am tempted to ignore it, but soon I can't. There he is, not yet knowing his fate, spilling his guts. The Goldmans are in the background jeering, The Juice's daughter is there looking genuinely despondent, and the Juice is pleading with the judge. Before long I realize something horrendous, something that just about knocks me off the couch...

Sitting there, sipping my coffee, watching Simpson squirm, I realize that I actually, in some weird way feel sorry for him: I am finding the whole thing to be very sad. Of course, as I'm watching his apology, I'm not thinking about it like that, but shit man, after a while, even though I already know his sentence, I am in some strange way hoping OJ will be cleared. YES. I DO NOT BLAME YOU IF YOU STOP READING NOW.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, it's partially because I'm a sucker for tears -- and he was definitely battling them -- but I think this desire for a free OJ came from somewhere far more remote: in a nasty kinda way it stems, I reckon, from The Naked Gun. It occurs to me, watching him beg for his life, that whenever I see OJ, I can't help but think of Detective Nordberg and, from there, OJ's entire existence pre-1994. It was as if, as I watched today, I didn't feel sorry for the OJ who was standing there, but for Nordberg and, subsequently, for the kid that set almost every tangible college football rushing record and rushed for over 2,000 yards in a 14-game NFL season. As I watched OJ apologize, I felt sorry for his earlier self and everybody, including me, who liked that guy.

I wonder which guy his fellow inmates will see? Who knows, maybe it'll be like The Longest Yard and he'll beat the guards in football and all will be forgiven. Then again, I've seen Sleepers too. All I know is, from now on the OJ in prison won't be quite so palatable.

Holiday Shipping Deadlines from Dealhack

Dealhack has compiled the most indispensible list for last-minute shoppers: holiday shipping deadlines. In my opinion, this is the most useful thing on the internet right now. Yep, even more useful than this.

via gizmodo


Shell House

Japanese architect Kotaro Ide designed this organic form for the hills of Nagano, Japan. Architecture is one of my favorite areas of design, but I have a limited descriptive vocabulary for it, so I am just going to go ahead and plagiarize from DesignBoom:

"The house is meant to function as a vacation home, which is able to withstand the humid summers and cold winters of the region. To accomplish this, Ide opted not to use the typical wood structure of villas in the area because of their susceptibility to decay easily. Instead, he used reinforced concrete to construct two elliptical shell forms which are supposed to represent a conch.

From its profile, 'Shell House' takes on a j-shape which is raised above the ground by 1400 mm resulting in the 'floating' masses. Ulin wood is used to create terraces around the home with a courtyard into the centre of the main living areas. The villa's simple aesthetic lends itself well to the traditional japanese landscape, creating a balance between the futuristic man-made structure and the environment which surrounds it. The entire project took more than 18 months to realize and two and a half years to complete."

Like I said, limited vocab, but the exterior, the setting, and the courtyard are all very beautiful. The interior space was not a subject of the article.


Puma Ocean Racing

Puma has a team involved in this year's Volvo Ocean Race, and I noticed that they have some new gear, so I went over to the Puma Ocean Racing website to check it out. Unfortunately, not everything is available online or even in stores at the moment, but there are some really intriuging pieces and, as usual, puma does an excellent job with their branding.

You can shop online at PUMA.com. The items pictured are all available from the online store.

Challenged Ballots from the MN Senate Race

Some of the challenged ballots from the Minnesota Senate Recount are fucking hysterical. You can see images of each challenged ballot on the Minnesota Public Radio website.

Lizard people. I love this place.

WeSC Sitar Marshmallow Headphones

These are cool on a couple levels. First off, they look amazing. Second, they are manufactured by WeSC. WeSC stands for WeAreTheSuperlativeConspiracy, a Stockholm-based streetwear manufacturer that gears its wares toward "intellectual slackers." The collective bases its designs on the skateboarding subculture (which I think is probably true of all streetwear designers, but whatever), but is developing their brand within a "life after skate" philosophy which means you can rock their stuff and not look like the groms at the skatepark.

WeSC has men's and women's collections as well as the headphones and some accessories all available for perusal on their website, which I must say is one of the best I've seen for browsing through a company's product line. The Sitar Marshmallow Headphones retail for $120 and you can get them here.
via CH

The Hammerhead

When I was growing up, I think the most advanced sled anyone owned had a steering wheel, and would completely disintegrate if you ever used said steering wheel, exceeded 10 mph, or became airborne. Thankfully(?) someone has gone ahead and improved on the designs of yesteryear to produce the Hammerhead, the self-proclaimed "Ferrari of sleds."

The Hammerhead boasts patented and patent pending amenities such as a front suspension, the ability to change skids based on snow conditions, intuitive steering, and a safe, comfortable ride. Yeah I haven't ridden one, so right now all I can tell you is that "Ferrari of sleds" is accurate with regard to the asking price: the Hammerhead is listed at $349.

via CH


360 'Summer Snowboard'

This innovative prototype by Francesco Sommacal is called the 360. While it resembles a snowboard not at all, the basic concept of steering by shifting your weight makes the analogy work. Beyond that, it is not a board, it has wheels, and you would probably not fare well on the snow when riding it. This piece won a Volvo Sports Design Award and the Red Dot: Luminary Design Award. I don't know what those are, but awards are good, right?

The vids after the jump are pretty sick.

ATHF: Open Casting Call

In perhaps the most awesome open casting call of all time, Cartoon Network's Adult Swim is looking for an actor to play the loveable Carl in an upcoming live action Aqua Teen Hunger Force special. You can submit your audition vid and check out the competition at justbecarl.adultswim.com.

If you're not familiar with the series you should really check out some of the clips on the website. That's Carl over there to the right in case you are suffering from a complete lack of context.


Solid Gold @ The Fine Line MPLS 12/3

According to their MySpace profile, Solid Gold belong to the "Psychedelic / Healing & EasyListening / Ghettotech" genre. I don't know what that means, but I think they make good music, and I like their new album Bodies of Water. Oh, their profile also mentions they sound like "mother nature sighing in ecstasy." I don't know what that means either, but judging by Solid Gold's music and choice of words, I'd be willing to guess that the ecstasy part isn't entirely metaphorical.

The album is definitely a trippy affair, and it has a very MGMT-on-xanax vibe. There is a certain earnestness in the vocals that makes the sound a little more intriguing than it would otherwise be. I would like to credit the singer, but the MySpace profile is unclear as to which band member, "pestilence, resistance," or "recovery," was responsible.

You can get the album in the iTunes store. My sources from the seedy underworld of internet piracy inform me that it is not yet available on any of the big torrent sites.

Right. Oh, and they are playing a show this Wednesday at the Fine Line in Mpls at 8 PM. $5 cover.

Ornamentum Gallery: Design Miami/08

Ornamentum Gallery is a Miami-based jewellery studio whose designers have produced some seriously remarkable work as part of the annual Design Miami/ showcase. The gallery was founded in 2002 and carries work by many of the world’s top jewellery designers as well as the up and coming avant garde.

My favorite piece (pictured above) is by Dutch designer Ted Noten. Titled 'Lady K Bag,' this clever merger between art and design blurs boundaries between the practical and preposterous.

For some reason it also reminds me that women do not like it when you go through their purses. Especially when you don't know them and the purse is hanging from their arm while they are walking down the street.

Some people need to relax. The police have better things to do.

via designboom

Mother of God


Happy Thanksgiving

ColorWare custom electronics

A friend of mine just tipped me about ColorWare, a company that uses a proprietary coloring procedure which allows you to select from 22 colors in combination to produce your own unique gadget color scheme. They offer custom color jobs for your iPod, your cell phone, your laptop, your gaming console, and even some HDTVs.
The process includes application of a "X2" compound which cures under UV light and provides protection against scratches that will de-customize your color scheme. X2 is also advertised as non-fading, which is pretty important considering the price of these custom jobs, which I guess one could refer to as exorbitant.

You can play around on the website and design your own color scheme for your new gadget, like the iPod classic. Some newer or more exclusive units are unavailable new from ColorWare, so you can send in your current, non-custom gadgets and have them colored up as well.

adidas Originals Winter Craftsmanship pack: Nizza

The Nizza, first released in the early '70's, has been reissued as part of the adidas Originals Winter Craftsmanship pack. The canvas upper is pretty slick, but to me what makes these kicks so noteworthy is the houndstooth detailing. There really is nothing I love more than houndstooth. If I could get my car upholstered exclusively in houndstooth, that's the way I would go. What if we could breed hounds with houndstooth coats? I would buy one. Even saying it is delightful...HOUNDSTOOTH. Mmmmmm.

So anyway, check out the Nizza low here and the rest of the adidas Originals here.


Have some junk that doesn't belong in a landfill but can't be picked up at the curb? Check out earth911.com, which allows you to enter what type of junk you have and your zip code, then tells you the nearest locations where you can drop your junk off to be recycled. The locations are displayed via google maps as well, so you know exactly where to go. You have officially run out of (reasonable) excuses why you can't be bothered to recycle.

via core77

The "O" in Obama

The most recognizable image from presidential campaign posters in the last election was the "O" design on the literature and paraphernalia of President-Elect Barack Obama. Yesterday, the New York Times published an interview with graphic designer Sol Sender, the creator of the ubiquitous symbol, by art director Steven Heller. Given the prominence it took on in the campaign, I found learning about the process of creating the "O" to be an interesting read. Check it out.

via core77

OZOlife "Give Smart, Give Green" Holiday Gift Pack

The greenies over at OZOlife have come up with this awesome holiday gift pack featuring all-natural and recycled items for the eco-conscious. While the price ($105) might be a little high for mass-giving, anyone who gives or receives it can sleep a little better knowing they have done the right thing for mother earth this holiday season.

This Green grab bag includes an all-aluminum water bottle, which will keep your plastic bottled water refuse out of landfills, and for reducing energy consumption and pollution, there is an Earthmate soft white CFL light bulb, which uses 75% less mercury than most energy efficient bulbs (and comes in 100% post-consumer packaging). The pack is rounded out with biodegradable sponges, a toothbrush made of recycled yogurt cups, soap produced and packaged in a 100% carbon-neutral process, and my personal favorite: Esschert Design's folding recyclable bags.

A great gift for anyone, whether they are eco-conscious already or need a little shove in the right direction. Check it out here.

via CH

Nerf N-Strike Vulcan

The Nerf N-Strike Vulcan is a fully automatic, tripod-mounted, belt-fed dart gun. I am having trouble finding the right words, as tears of joy stream down my face...

...ok, better now. The belt feeding mechanism allows the Vulcan to fire 3 rounds per second, and from the images available it looks like each ammo belt consists of 25-30 darts. Meaning you could fire off the entire thing in 10 seconds or less...yeah. I mean I was sold when I saw the picture, but the performance aspect precipitated my current jaw-on-floor state. Little sisters and pets alike had better say their prayers.

North Face E-Tip Gloves

I appear to be a bit of a handwear connoiseur today... Anyway, these gloves from North Face are made of a polyester shell, silicone grips on the palm, and X-Static fingertips on the thumb and index finger which allows for iPhone, laptop touchpad, and iPod/MP3 touchwheel functionality without exposing your fingers to the cold.

While I can't personally speak to their functionality, I do know they look cool and I need a pair of gloves, so North Face and I appear to be on the same page. Or at least in the same book. Chapter. Whatever.

Take a closer look here.

Everlast x Nintendo Wii Boxing Gloves

Oh hell yes. This collaboration between Nintendo and boxing equipment manufacturer Everlast is just what the doctor ordered. Not since the monumental failure of the Power Glove has the gamer had the opportunity to actually throw a punch and see the results on screen. While I haven't been able to find any in-stock for myself, Toys R Us has email notification for when they become available.

There is no substitute for some old school Punch Out, but since that appears to be a pipe dream for the Wii, you will have to make do with Wii Sports, Showtime Championship Boxing, or Victorious Boxers: Revolution.

These babies retail for $30 a pair, so $60 for two pairs, which is a little steep in my humble opinion, but hey, they look pretty realistic, so if things don't go your way in-game, you can just pivot and drop your opponent in real life!
via NYT

Fight the Power

If you live in Minnesota, you may or may not have heard about a new law which went into effect August 1, 2008. Minnesota Statutes Sec. 169.475 provides that it is now a petty misdemeanor to engage in electronic messaging while driving. What is an electronic message? The statute defines it as "a self-contained piece of digital communication that is designed or intended to be transmitted between physical devices." It goes on to include text messaging, email, and attempts to access the web via your cell phone.

The ostensible purpose of the law is innocuous enough: to cut down on the number of accidents caused by distracted, text-messaging drivers. The public safety concerns gloss over what could end up being far more sinister consequences of this new police power.

If a police officer sees you with a cell phone in hand while you are driving, that can be construed as reasonable suspicion to make a traffic stop. Now here is our first potential problem: what if you are simply getting a number from your phone book or turning your phone on or adjusting the ringer volume when the officer sees you? How is the officer going to confirm that you were in the act of texting? Is he going to take your phone? That's a seizure under the 4th Amendment of the United States Constitution, and it requires probable cause.

Now we arrive at the second potential problem: if the officer can show probable cause that you were texting, can the officer use it to perform a search of you? Of your vehicle? Of the passengers in your vehicle? Whether or not they can is a matter for the courts to decide, but I assure you that the police WILL use this newest encroachment on our civil liberties to make unwarranted traffic stops in the hopes of discovering an arrestable offense. It's their job to uphold the law, and if you are in a community of calm, quiet, law-abiding citizens, you are going to suffer because in such places police officers are very nearly always bereft of purpose and are searching for lawbreakers at every stoplight.

Finally, how does this play out in a contested case in front of a judge? How is the prosecutor going to meet their burden of proof? Do they have the authority to subpoena the contents of all your text messages in order to ascertain whether you were engaged in the illicit activity? Is it simply a matter of your word against that of the officer? There are a litany of evidentiary concerns as well as potential privacy issues that make my stomach turn.

Well, I would like to know the answers to the questions posed above, because this trend toward totalitarian traffic laws (yeah I said it) in the name of public safety is really giving me a rash. If you have received a citation for texting while driving, please shoot me an email or comment here and let me know the circumstances. Everyone else, just be aware of what you are doing with your phone when you are driving.

for more information, go here

Aston Martin One-77

I have been searching for the right words for this post since yesterday, but I cannot possibly describe how I feel about this car except to say that it gets me a little worked up. I have long considered Aston Martin to be at the fore of automotive design; the lines of their cars speak to me on a primal level: "I am just way too fast."

The One-77 elevates this dedication to speedy design to an art form. Only 77 vehicles will be produced--at roughly $2.5 million each--and the limited run allowed the design team to use techniques and materials that would have been impossible to provide for mass-produced models. From the signature grille to the carbon fiber frame, this beauty takes the Aston Martin vintage into uncharted waters of awesomeness. Check out the videos at the One-77 website if you get a chance.

Oh by the way, this beast rocks a 700hp, 7.3 L, v12, six-speed manual transmission just to let you know it isn't all for show.

X-ray Photography

The image below comes from self-styled "x-ray nerd" Nick Veasey . He uses industrial x-ray machines (wha....?) to take x-ray images of everything from socks to skyscrapers and 777s. Some of the images on his website will blow you away. Prints are on the spendy side, but it is still worth the click.

Vanessa Prager

I was looking around one of my favorite art and design blogs and I found a post about a 24 year-old LA artist named Vanessa Prager. The image above (a self portrait) grabbed my attention because of the artist's slightly cartoonish style. It is sort of a beautiful union between Rockwell and the guy in the mall kiosk who airbrushes everyone with the same squinty eyes and huge lips. The caricatures are brilliant... check out the archives here.