Seriously, don’t even try to pronounce that, Dan Lewis says in his newsletter, Now I Know.

Instead, pick a language you don’t know, but can roughly approximate what it sounds like when spoken. Then, “speak” it, making up a nonsense version of that language as you go along. Now, take your “words” and put it to music which you think is appropriate for that language’s culture. If you do it well, you’ll end up with a song which to a native speaker is gibberish, but to someone who doesn’t know the language sounds like it could be real.

You don’t have to take my word for it, because it’s been done. That’s what “Prisencolinensinainciusol” is. It’s a song, from Italy, 1972. You can watch the video (and listen to it), below.


Calvin and Hobbes creator talks

Mental_floss magazine’s Jake Rossen has managed to snag an interview with the legendary Bill Watterson, creator of Calvin and Hobbes, a famously private man. The print magazine has a fuller story on the comic strip. A sample of the Q&A.

Owing to spite or just a foul mood, have you ever peeled one of those stupid Calvin stickers off of a pickup truck?

I figure that, long after the strip is forgotten, those decals are my ticket to immortality.

Speaking of Calvin

29 Tweets From A Fake United Airlines Account  
This fake Twitter account from ‘United Airlanes‘, Nico Lang says on Thought Catalog, proves why the Internet exists — to bring joy into our lives and make us laugh so hard our brains hurt.

Some very clever person out there realized that IPhones were autocorrecting “airlines” to “airlanes” (for some reason) and set up an account to respond to all the tweets that were sent to the wrong United. For example:

Did you eat the food? You’re not supposed to actually eat the food. — United Airlanes (@unitedairlanes) July 31, 2013

In the event of an emergency water landing, your seat cushion doubles as a flotation device to keep you above water until you freeze and die — United Airlanes (@unitedairlanes) August 1, 2013

‘United Airlanes’ tweets

The 19 Most Unnerving Spots On Earth

So, did I hear anyone ask where do story ideas come from? The Internet, of course. No writer can look at these places without getting a story idea, or 19.

“Dare to spend a night?” Jeremy Bender asks on Buzzfeed and shows us some really creepy places. Take the Island of the Dolls, Mexico.

Doll islandThe nearly uninhabited island is in Xochimilco, Mexico. According to legend, a girl died in the canals surrounding the island, after which dolls began to wash ashore constantly. The island’s sole inhabitant took to hanging the dolls around the island as a vigil for the deceased girl.

Creepy places

How to Hook a Reader

Laura Lee analyzes some opening lines. I especially like her first example:

“There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.”

It comes from The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis, and she comments:

This one is just awesome…This short and amusing opening line tells us a lot about the character in a very short time…

Opening lines

Hilarious Chinese Translation Fails

Sometime English-speaking guests in China might have some difficulties finding their way around because the translated signs leave a bit to be desired, the Bored Panda magazine tells us.

Check these pictures out, so that if you ever do go to China, you wouldn’t be too surprised about fresh crap in fish tanks and wild germs that hate soup. Oh, and never order the greenstuff!


Paris cat cafe serves up coffee with a saucer of cream

Cafe des Chats, in the Marais district, offers ‘purr therapy’ that ‘helps relieve arthritis and rheumatism’ and help animal lovers looking for feline companionship, The Guardian reports.

Customers and catsThe cafe is home to a dozen stray or abandoned cats. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

Cat cafe


Alma Alexander

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