Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Good Reads/Random Cool Sites (4/21/2010)

Sillof makes custom action figures, including these insanely awesome steampunk Star Wars ones.

I don't know who Obama will nominate for the Supreme Court, but I hope they pass this litmus test: knowing the difference between e-mail and a pager.

Diversity takes work.

Jure Robic might be the world's best ultra-endurance athlete. He has a "unique talent that sets him apart from the rest of the world: his insanity."

"During race, I am going crazy, definitely," he says, smiling in bemused despair. "I cannot explain why is that, but it is true."

The craziness is methodical, however, and Robic and his crew know its pattern by heart. Around Day 2 of a typical weeklong race, his speech goes staccato. By Day 3, he is belligerent and sometimes paranoid. His short-term memory vanishes, and he weeps uncontrollably. The last days are marked by hallucinations: bears, wolves and aliens prowl the roadside; asphalt cracks rearrange themselves into coded messages. Occasionally, Robic leaps from his bike to square off with shadowy figures that turn out to be mailboxes. In a 2004 race, he turned to see himself pursued by a howling band of black-bearded men on horseback.

"Mujahedeen, shooting at me," he explains. "So I ride faster."

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