Posts by David Matthews
If there's one thing you can say about planet Earth, it's that the place never runs out of interesting vacation spots. Take, for example, Pyramid, an abandoned former Soviet coal-mining town that is 800 miles from the North Pole.
Located on Spitsbergen Island in the Arctic Ocean, Pyramid once boasted a population of 1,000 tough people who didn't mind the well-below-freezing temperatures and the fact that the sun rises a little earlier than you might be used to, at 4:30 a.m. But in 1998, seven years after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Russia pulled the plug on the place, leaving behind little more than the world's most northerly statue of former USSR premier Vladimir Lenin, old film reels, and snow boots.
Now it's a ghost town with one permanent resident: Vladimir Prokofiev, a 33-year-old tour guide. Left to his own devices when there are no tourists to show around, and with no television, radio, or Internet and very weak cell phone signal available, Prokofiev passes the time by using the still-functioning amenities on site, including a gym, and making friends with an arctic fox that lives nearby.
Moviegoers were treated to a whole host of flicks this fall featuring their favorite Hollywood stars facing some serious adversity. Whether it was Robert Redford facing off against the ocean in "All Is Lost," Tom Hanks getting abducted by pirates in the docudrama "Captain Phillips , " or Sandra Bullock and George Clooney getting lost in space in the box-office smash "Gravity," the fall movie season has been all about one thing: survival. Naturally, the genre of hyper-intense and realistic thrillers has become rife with parody. "Saturday Night Live" was one of the first to satirize the genre with a sketch, but New York-based comedian and performer Daniel Hubbard might have bested the long-running TV show with his short film that spoofs the trailer and story for "Gravity" by reimagining it as a harrowing trip to furniture superstore Ikea.
If you've ever been amazed by a dog skydiving with a soldier, you know that dogs have a storied history of serving essential functions for the military. During the Civil War, dogs were used for sending messages, and in World War I, they were used for everything from appearing on propaganda posters to detecting poisonous gas attacks. Even Rin Tin Tin can be considered a war dog, as he was rescued by American soldier Lee Duncan in the French countryside during World War I. As the military grew more complex, so did the roles of dogs deployed with our troops, such as doing guard duty and detecting explosives.
But what happens to the dogs when their tours are over? Most military dogs, being specially trained, are integrated into K-9 units in police departments across the country. Others are adopted by their military trainers or a civilian caretaker and retire to the quiet life, where they can learn all sorts of new things and just be regular dogs.
These days it seems as if people who propose to their significant other do so with a wildly public gesture that ends up on the Internet as a viral video. Whether or not these moments are meant to be shared with the Web, it wouldn't be shocking to find out that people were actively trying to outdo other viral videos and attain some Internet fame while also locking down their future spouse. However, despite any fatigue that comes with these videos, they can still be surprising and incredibly affecting.
The most recent one making the rounds is just that, and it raises the bar considerably for anyone else looking to pop the question while also racking up the hits on YouTube.
The video is understandably proving to be one of the most popular of the month. Since it was posted on Wednesday, it has received more than 1 million viewson YouTube and appeared on several news sites.
Much like trying to notice the imperceptible movement of an analog clock's hands, it's next to impossible to notice the signs of aging in the short term. Humans age in invisible ways every second, but the effects can take months or years to register on a person's face or body. Anthony Cerniello , a filmmaker who has worked on music videos for bands like Arcade Fire and Yeah Yeah Yeahs, a host of MTV documentary series, as well as commercials for the San Diego Zoo and Ugg, wanted to examine the aging process and decided to do so with a short film.
Watch the complete video below and let us know what you think in the comments.