Poop coming in handy

Yes poop. 💩

Here are two ways poop came in handy this year:

In Japan: “Professor Poo bestseller brings scatology-based study to Japan” (from the Guardian). This book is helping kids learn to write kanji characters, and the term うんこ漢字ドリル(Poop Kanji Drills is the name of the book) was one of this year’s Words of the Year in Japan. (“The Japanese words that perfectly sum up how the country felt this year” from Quartz)

Read more about the workbook at Spoon and Tamago.

In the US: turning cow poop into electricity

Read more about this “methane digester” at the Strauss Family Creamery in California.



This retired man in Japan uses the Excel spreadsheet software on his computer to make “paintings” (パソコン画 — pasokon-ga — “pasokon” is the Japanese portmanteau for personal computer + “ga” means picture).

He’s quite a character. So maybe it’s not about the tools. It’s about the person.

Here’s a little more about him from Spoon & Tamago.

And there’s more information, and images here, where it says Mr. Horiuchi won the official “Ageless Award” this year, proving that retirement can indeed be the start of a second life, and reminding us about how important it is to have a purpose and goals in life.

Trust in the pen

This artist draws … and draws and draws.

I liked the comment about how when she was in Japan, she used a fine pen. But when she went to the U.S. “everything was bigger and bolder” so she started using a bigger pen.

Animating the past

The GIFs by French photographer and animator Nicolas Monterrat on this Tumblr include some funny, creative, and sometimes very spooky images (via Colossal). Many of them take old photos and animate them in unexpected ways. Not much English input today, but plenty to try to explain and express your opinions about. You could even turn these GIFs into a story.