The Rubik's Cube is a weird thing. Is it a toy? A puzzle? A source of incomprehensible anger and frustration from my youth? Yes. Erno Rubik invented a thing that had only one right answer and billions upon billions of wrong answers (edit: so I actually just Googled it and the possible variations of a Rubik's Cube are 4x10^19 or 43 Quintillion... still only one of those is the right one). I consider myself a pretty bright guy but I have never solved one of those things in my life; I was solidly in the "let me just take off all the stickers and put them back in order to solve it" camp. There was always that one kid in school who figured out the trick to solving it in a few seconds and would show it off every chance they got (I'm looking at you Jacob! I don't care if I was a groomsman in your wedding, that wasn't cool bro).
Well imagine if one of those kids who was really good at solving Rubik's Cubes was like "Oh okay... this is what I do now."
Oh wait, you don't have to imagine it because a guy named Steven Brundage was that kid, and he Rubik's all day. He is so good at moving a plastic cube made up of smaller plastic cubes around that he has turned it into a professional magic act. And once again I'm a pretty bright guy... but Steven is definitely using real magic. In fact he just won on Fool Us, it's a show where Penn & Teller watch magic acts and if they can't figure out how the act happened the performer gets to open for them in Vegas. In the history of the show only a select few have fooled Penn & Teller and usually they can guess how it happened but aren't completely sure. For Steven they just stand up and say "He fooled us."
I've seen this video a few times now and I still am just like... huh?
First Off... let me set the scene for you... it was last week, and everybody was talking about health foods. Specifically the wonder grain Quinoa and how healthy it was... then somebody started about Chia seeds and how healthy they were. This is where the tangent began.
"Chia seeds? Like what they use for Chia pets? 'Ch-ch-cha Chia' Pets from one of the best commercial jingles of all time?"
So instead of Googling health properties of chia seeds I just immediately go online and order a Chia Pet... we live in the future and we can do that now.
It arrived yesterday. So did I get a Chia Dog? A Chia Cat? The Chia Pig? No... I got Chia Abe Lincoln.
Here is how it works... you soak the clay planter part in water for an hour, then you add the seeds to a bit of water and stir it around until it becomes this gel-like paste that you spread over where you want it to grow. It said to use a plastic knife or spoon so naturally we just use our hands. It... didn't go well. So throughout the day we added more coats of the seeds... we were supposed to have enough seeds to last at least three plantings... but we used them all for this first attempt.
CHIA ABE LINCOLN: DAY ONE
Technically speaking we weren't supposed to spread seeds over his beard but we figured you couldn't have a Chia Abe without a Chia Beard. I think real Abe would agree (He would also be pretty freaked out for several other reasons if we were actually able to ask him).
We should have full Chia growth within 1 to 2 weeks, I will be updating this with photos as it progresses.
DAY 4 (GREEN FINALLY BEGINNING TO SHOW)
DAY 5 (LOTS OF GREEN, BUT NO FULL BLOOM YET)
And then for a long time it didn't really seem to change but then...
DAY 20 (ABE YOU ARE A HIPPY)
The backlight from the window doesn't really do it justice so here is the back of Abe:
All in all I'm pretty happy with the results. There is one spot right above is forehead where absolutely nothing grew but that was where we put the most seeds. The directions said not to clump the seeds extremely close together and we did the exact opposite of that. We put seeds on seeds on seeds (3 times what we were supposed to actually) Had we not gone rogue and actually followed the directions I think we would have a very respectable Chia Abe Lincoln, instead we got an Abe that security would follow around if he were walking alone in a department store. Still though, for the original $14 investment and almost 3 weeks of entertainment I would rate the whole thing an 8/10... would Chia Abe again.
Science can be real crazy sometime, all my life I've read that real lasers aren't nearly as cool as the lasers that are in the movies. I'd always read that powerful lasers would have to be invisible, and wouldn't look like a cool Storm Trooper blaster from Star Wars... I'd accepted that reality and moved on with my life.
And then there is this guy...
This guy, who I only know by his YouTube name styropyro, probably heard all the same anti-climatic things about lasers and then was like "Nah... I'm gonna build a Laser Shotgun"
AND THEN HE DID!!!!
Here is all the techno talk about the lasers from the about section of the video:
Just finished building my 40W(!!!) laser shotgun!!! The output of this laser is complete insanity, and is made up of 8 parallel 5W laser beams totaling to 40W. The parallel beams are manipulated with lenses, sort of like how a choke modifies the spread of a shotgun blast.
The massive diode array is powered by a huge lithium polymer battery pack (capable up dumping 250A) and the laser array is regulated by a whopping 24 LM317 drivers.
Yep those were words. But the important thing here is that a random guy in his garage, who spends his free non-lasering time raising giant moths, built a laser shooting/ping-pong ball burning/shotgun... just because he could. What a time to be alive.
"There is no good reason for anybody to own something this powerful, but since it wasn't illegal for me to build, I decided to build it anyway" -styropyro
Did you know Arnold Schwarzenegger owns a tank? Was that the least surprising sentence you've ever read? Yep, the guy who made a career from causing and/or being around explosions also spends his free time... exploding things. And now he wants you to join in the fun. Check out the explosive video below and I posted the link for more info after.
Crates of explosives, a rocket launcher, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Boom goes the dynamite! Enter here for the chance to blow stuff up with Arnold: http://bit.ly/BlowItUPWithArnold
Every $10 entry benefits After-School All-Stars and puts you in the running to win a trip to LA, including flights, a 4-star hotel, and a day of blowing stuff up with Arnold.