The Turin Erotic Papyrus


Painted sometime in the Ramesside Period (1292-1075 B.C.E.), the fragments above—called the “Turin Erotic Papyrus” because of their “discovery” in the Egyptian Museum of Turin, Italy—only hint at the frank versions of ancient sex they depict (see a graphic partial reconstruction at the bottom of the post).

The number of sexual positions the papyrus illustrates—twelve in all – “fall somewhere between impressively acrobatic and unnervingly ambitious”, one even involving a chariot.



Adding this one to the Best of Pretty Awful category – just because of the part about chariots.

Via Open Culture.

This Land Is Mine: The Israel-Palestine Conflict in One Musical Number

Screen Shot 2014-07-12 at 8.01.38 PM

This Land Is Mine is a parody of “The Exodus Song”.

That music was sort of the soundtrack of American zionism in the 1960’s and 70’s. It was supposed to express Jewish entitlement to Israel.

By putting the song in the mouth of every warring party, I’m critiquing the original song.

Lyrics by Pat Boone, sung by Andy Williams
This land is mine
God gave this land to me

This brave and ancient land to me
And when the morning sun
Reveals her hills and plains
Then I see a land
Where children can run free.

So take my hand
And walk this land with me
And walk this lovely land with me
Tho’ I am just a man

When you are by my side

With the help of God
I know I can be strong.

Tho’ I am just a man

When you are by my side

With the help of God
I know I can be strong.

To make this land our home

If I must fight

I’ll fight to make this land our own.
Until I die this land is mine!

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Kinda puts it all in perspective…

Quoted text via Nina Paley via Films For Action.
Audio is a parody of The Exodus Song sung by Andy Williams, lyrics by Pat Boone.
Check out Nina Paley‘s site, which has an explanation of the historical identity of each of the characters, or Wikipedia for personal information on American animator Nina Paley herself.

The Robot Camel Jockeys of the Arabian Peninsula


A robot jockey is commonly used on camels in camel racing as a replacement for human jockeys.

Developed since 2004, the robotic jockeys are slowly phasing out the use of human jockeys, which in the case of camel racing in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, and Qatar, often employs small children who reportedly suffer repeated systemic human rights abuses.

In response to international condemnation of such abuses, the nations of Qatar and the UAE have banned the use of human jockeys in favor of robots.


The government of Qatar initiated development of the robots at the beginning of 2001.

At the end of 2003, the design, with a revised analysis, was tendered to Swiss robotics firm K-Team. Initial problems faced by the design team, led by Alexandre Colot, included the fact that the camels were conditioned to the use of human jockeys.


Early designs confused or frightened the camels. The designs were modified to include more human-like features, including a mannequin-like face, sunglasses, hats, racing silks and even traditional perfumes used by human jockeys.

Due to their heavy weight (16 to 18 kg) and high cost, the Swiss product was ruled out and replaced by smaller, lighter (2 to 3 kg) and lower-priced models in Qatar and the UAE. The robots are remotely controlled by operators being driven alongside the race track in SUVs.


Via Wikipedia.

The Existential Crisis of Peter and Jane


In “Peter and Jane, the Lost Episodes”, [Jon Bentley] succeeds in recontextualising commonplace scenes with unexpected and absurdly humorous interventions.

Jon recalls his first encounter with the iconic Peter and Jane books: “Like many people of my generation, I learned to read with Peter, Jane, Mummy, Daddy and Pat the dog. As I struggled with the unfamiliar letters, my eyes where invariably drawn to the picture on the opposite page, full of strange details that drew me in and seemed to suggest a richer more mysterious narrative than the prosaic stories and dialogue on the written page”.

Years later, Jon revisited those images and began to construct a series of alternative and surreal narratives.




Artist Jon Bentley, inspired by Peter and Jane from the Key Words Reading Scheme early readers children’s books. And presumably Nietzsche. Or Cthulhu. Either way, it’s worth checking out the many other examples of Jon Bentley’s fine work.

The Cooked Caloric Value of a Human Body


Curious about the nutritional value of the human body? In 2006, a researcher in the UK wrote a dissertation on cannibalism and calculated the caloric content of edible body parts.

The skin has 8,294 calories, and the heart, 722.

The total? About 81,500 calories, assuming you aren’t too picky about what you are willing to eat. I mean, beyond that it is a human body.

Note, the study only considered the average male body; presumably a female body’s differing composition of muscle and fat would adjust these values.

Still, a great way to start a cocktail party conversation, no? Or better yet, a barbeque!

Photo actually a funerary rite and not cannibalism, but I couldn’t resist the juxtaposition with the rest of this article. It was that or ridiculous colonial-era illustrations, and I couldn’t stomach that. (See what I did there?)
Researcher James Cole via Academia via Science Alert.

Operation It’s a Small War After All: Proper Siege Tactics for Assaulting Disney’s Magic Kingdom


Presented on Quora to the community was the following odd (but brilliant) question:

Cinderella Castle is the the worldwide-recognized icon of the Disney empire. Physical representations of it stand at the center of two Disney Parks: Walt Disney World in Florida (state), and Tokyo Disneyland.

Assuming it were an actual fortress, how would you take it?

Sergeant Jon Davis, USMC, decided to take a crack at an operational plan. Below is the (slightly redacted) plan of attack:

Phase 1:
A ground must be chosen in which you can quickly secure a foothold into the Magic Kingdom. This position must be easily accessible for the invasion force, provide cover and concealment for the troops and give strategic advantage once taken while depriving the enemy of the same.

For this mission, I choose the area outside the tracks, between Tomorrowland and Main Street USA.


Phase 2
The next phase would be the first two infantry companies sneaking in through the wooded area in the Southeast between Tomorrowland and Mainstreet, USA. Their primary targets are the train station and entrance to the park (to prevent enemy escape or reinforcements.)

Marines and soldiers are advised to not use the teleporters. They’re a trap. They will only kill your unit and replace him with an evil alien.

Also important is that troops remember to take all underground entry points and gas them to prevent surprise attacks from the tunnels.


Phase 3
Securing Mainstreet USA (now Mike Station) and Tomorrowland (Tango Base): By this point we should be concerned with securing our assets in Mike Station and Tango Base.

You will see in the map below that I have shown the locations of sniper and machine gun teams along the buildings and alleyways in the two operations centers.

The weapons should be made to cover key positions likely to receive any counter attack through likely avenues of approach with overlapping fields of fire and pinpoint targeting by the snipers.


Phase 4
An assault force comprised of an infantry company staged in Tango base will attack the back of the castle.

The front of the castle is lined with a moat and the counterattack will be an easy matter if they blow the bridge and your men stand helpless staring at the statue of Walt as they are taken out one by one. Go through Fantasyland and attack the castle in the rear.

Secondary Objective: While in Fantasyland we will have the opportunity to take down the menace of all parents everywhere.

The “It’s a Small World” ride will be within our reach. Our secondary objective is to eliminate the ride with extreme prejudice. This isn’t a capture mission like the castle, but one of complete annihilation.


The Final Phase
Now that the castle’s main attention is on the defenses of its rear the primary invasion force will be ready to take structure.

Infantry staged at the station will now make their way down Mainstreet and secure the statue and the moat. They will then spread out to secure the other zones of the region as they take the castle. Mission accomplished.


Via Quora.
Also check out Jon Davis’ My Patreon Support Message as well as his Short Stories and Essays in Military, Science Fiction and Life.