Happy Independence Day 2014

image004Happy Independence Day to all my fellow Americans. For those of you who are not Americans you can have a happy July 4th anyway but know that it will never be as epic as the one going on in the US right now.

12 Miles in Borrowed Shoes

GEDC0006I thought I’d do something new today on Uncanny Flats. I’m going to tell you a bit about what’s going on right now so you can know what to expect going forward.

As you know I’ve been writing Uncanny Flats for a while now and I plan to continue writing for just as long as the Internet Police can’t find me. So don’t worry uncannyflats.com will go on. There will likely be some changes though.

You see last week I quit my old job where I’d been working tier 1 technical support for a web hosting company. When your email broke or your site went down because you didn’t pay your freaking bill or you made some bad life choices I was the one you called to yell at. But that’s over.

I’ve accepted a new position as a drafter with an engineering firm. My schedule there is going to be quite different from what I have enjoyed at the hosting company where I could go in at the butt crack of dawn and work to the early afternoon. Thereby giving me afternoon hours to attend school where I’m studying drafting and giving me time to write articles for Uncanny Flats.

All that means is that my new posts may be fewer and farther between for the next several months while I finish my schooling so I can actually be qualified for the new job that I’ll be starting tomorrow.

While all of this job changing mess has been going on I’ve also made some changes to the site. Specifically, I changed hosts. One of the perks of managing the servers at a hosting company is that you can easily hide your tiny unknown sites on the server and host them for free. I imagine I could have kept that up after leaving the company but I do try and maintain at least some small amount of morality in my life. What does any of this mean to you? Nothing. Only that if you come across an article that is missing an image or has broken links, I’m sorry there were lots of things borked in the move. I’m working on fixing those.

To make sure the transition of jobs and schedules and plans and means really stuck in my mind I also had the opportunity this weekend to run the 2014 Ragnar Wasatch Back relay. When asked why I did it I told people it was for the challenge and adventure. And it was a challenge and adventure. As we met our team at the exchange I realized that of all the things to forget to bring with me to a race, I forgot my running shoes. Luckily my dad, who was also on the team, brought two pairs and I was able to cram my size 13 feet in his size 12 Altras. That’s where the title comes from.  We made it work and I survived. I’m hopeful that at some point I’ll be able to feel my toes again.

For all my fans of Uncanny Flats I need your help going forward. Send me your tips on articles. I’ve never turned one down so far and I don’t intent to start until someone sends a real stinker.

The Most Dangerous Thing You Can Do: Sitting

783673519434121393It looks like today has somehow become a sports and exercise day. Sorry, it won’t happen again. I guess I’m excited because as you read this I am running Ragnar. That is, as long as you read this article right when it publishes. And if not, why don’t you love me?

Anyway… We’ve all heard forever that sit-down jobs are killing us all. Which is probably true being that everyone keeps eventually dying. But why is your desk job so bad for you? It’s because you have a bad chair and the company doesn’t value you enough to get you a new one that doesn’t pinch your elbows or try to dump you on the floor if you lean forward.

I’m sure if yo took the time to study it you’d find that everything you do for an extended period is bad for you. Yeah, I’ll go with everything. I can’t think of any examples of activities that would be good for you if you did it for a long enough time. Let me know if you can.

Hit the jump for a large version.

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Not Sure About This: Star Wars Yoga

Star-Wars-Yoga-LeiaIf you’re in to yoga or exercise in general than that’s great. I give you permission to lord it over the rest of us like running that 5k makes you the coolest person in not just your 8th grade, but all of the 8th grades. If you’re in to yoga and Star Wars then you and the other four people in your club need to see this.

The subject of exercise isn’t really discussed in the Star Wars universe, but Princess Leia didn’t get those abs from running the Rebellion. Surely Stormtroopers had to stretch in order to move around in their clunky armor. Artist Rob Osborne must have had thoughts like this, and the end result is a serious of hilarious posters illustrating yoga poses as performed by Star Wars characters. Even R2-D2 and C-3PO get in on the bendy action.

You know what pose I can do? The mountain. Not the one where you crush your tiny opponent to death at the end of a champion’s battle (although I am all for that) the one where you just stand there and pretend you’re a mountain. As opposed to being the mudslide you more accurately represent.

Hit the jump for more.

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Best at Being Worst: World Cup Flopping Rankings

flopWhile we’re on the subject of soccer. What is with flopping? Holy crap. It seems like I remember news about players getting yellow carded for flopping back in South Africa. Why is it suddenly legal again?

All too often during matches, seemingly fit men fall to the ground in agony. They scream, wince, pound the grass with their fists and gesture to the sidelines for a stretcher. Some of them clutch a limb as if it was just freed from the jaws of a wood chipper.

But after a few moments, just as the priests arrive to administer last rites, they sit up on the gurney, shake it off, rise to their feet and run back on the field to play some more.

Here’s my suggestion. Flopping can be legal but the ref’s carry paintball guns and anyone who is being a girly-man and flopping like a wilty flower gets shot in the neck. That ought to stop that pretty quick.

Hit the jump for the full standings.

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What Happens When an American Football Coach Starts Coaching Soccer?

footballBecause soccer is the word of the day and everyone is all into the World Cup that’s going on right now I’m going to show you a funny video I ran across where an American football coach starts coaching an English club-soccer team.

While I’m on this let’s talk. Soccer and football. I was trying to describe this video to someone and they just weren’t getting it even though I tried to clarify by saying “American football” and “soccer.” They were lost in the semantics. So I move that from now on we in the USA, in fact, not even just the USA, all North American countries (sorry Mexico) agree that if we say “football” we agree that we’re talking about full-on, helmet and pads, American tackle football. If we say “soccer” we are talking about soccer.

The rest of the continents can keep calling both of the sports football so long as they preface ours. So I’ll let them get away with rewriting this article’s title as “What Happens When an American Football Coach Starts Coaching Football?” Yes it may sound a bit confusing for people who are drifting in and out of the conversation but I promise, once we all adjust it will be better.

Hit the jump for the video.

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Roll Me Down the Hill: Concrete Pipe Cabins

China_s_concrete_p_2952481aWhen you travel do you like to sleep in a nice hotel that you booked weeks in advance or do you just wing it on a park bench? I’d like to think I’m adventurous enough to just go for it and sleep wherever I drop but I know I’m not.

A bizarre hotel made from pieces of concrete piping has appeared in a village in Henan Province, China.

Each room is made of a different piece of concrete piping and has air conditioning with a king size bed.

According to local reports, the owner hopes his hotel will attract city dwellers to the countryside.

I don’t think you could pass these off as hotel rooms in the US. Maybe cabins. But there’s probably some kind of law about using discarded construction waste to house people. That being said, you think we could get one of these rolling down the hill? It’s worth a try at least right?

Hit the jump for a video.

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Does Chewing Gum Make you More Sexy? Apparently So

twinnersI hope you’ve all had to deal with twins in your life so you can know the joys that come from not being able to tell people apart. Usually I’m pretty immune to that myself as my mother is a twin and so is my mother-in-law. It’s just really funny to watch people guess at which one they are and see them be wrong.

But that’s besides the point of this article. This is actually about a study that used identical twins to test how chewing gum makes you appear to the outside world. As it turns out, chewing gum improves your appearance in society. I would never have guessed.

Chewing gum brand Beldent held a social experiment with identical twins. One gets a piece of gum, the other doesn’t. Then they ask a bunch of people a series of questions like “Which one seems like he has more friends?” and “Which one has a better sex life?” That… is a personal question. Definitely none of any gum’s business! Apparently for the most part people like the twin who’s chewing gum. Says the results of an experiment conducted by a chewing gum company.How convenient!

Hit the jump for a video.

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Butts and Why they Dominate Every Aspect of our Lives

buttI know you’ve never thought about this one before, but that’s okay because someone else has and they’re willing to share. The question is, what’s so special about the butt?

“Your ass is you.” Webcomic creator and animator Domics shows how much we – or at least anyone who speaks English – value our behinds. And he does it without mentioning Sir Mix-A-Lot.

I don’t think I ever thought of all those things together before, but I’ve probably thought of them all separately. *re-watching video* Okay, almost all of them. Now, sit back and learn something about the extra cushion in your seat.

Hit the jump for the video.

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Everyone’s Life Sucks: Why You Shouldn’t Trust Facebook Statuses

scottEveryone has done it at some point, we’ve posted something to a social media site that was less than entirely true. Whether it was innocently trying to find the silver lining in the storm-cloud that’s destroying your home or if you just want to make yourself look better to potential mates we’ve all been there.

This, I’m gonna call it a short film, from HigtonBrothers demonstrates this beautifully. Watch Scott Thompson as his life goes to pot and see his status updates on Facebook. None of them are completely untrue but they really do lead you to believe he’s more of an interesting guy than you’d guess when you meet him at the water cooler.

What can we learn from this? I guess, it’s that you can’t trust anybody. If you didn’t know that yet I’m sorry I had to be the one to break it to you. Just remember that no one if as happy, as exciting, as adventurous, or as depressed as they may make themselves seem on social media.

The one exception is dramatic people. That group of people who make those passive aggressive posts looking for pity. You’ve seen them, things like, “If you don’t like what I think feel free to un-friend me IRL.” Those people are trying to appear dramatic. I’ve met these people, they are just as dramatic in real life as they appear to be on Facebook.

Hit the jump for the video.

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