All about mosquitos

A small town in Sweden has a mosquito catching contest. Sound like fun?

“The Unofficial Mosquito-Catching World Championship” (from Atlas Obscura)

Looks like they do something similar in Russia, too:

“With 43 bites, 9-year-old wins ‘tastiest girl’ competition at annual Russian Mosquito Festival” (from the Washington Post)

What unsual contests have you heard of or participated in? If you could create an original contest, what would you have people do?

And speaking of mosquitos, here’s an unusual, counter-intuitive strategy to get rid of the pests:

“To Shrink Mosquito Population, Scientists Are Releasing 20 Million Mosquitoes” (from NPR)

Meanwhile, in Scotland one railway company has installed a “mosquito device” — a device emitting an annoying sound — to keep young people from loitering around train stations.

“Anger over Hamilton station ‘mosquito’ device” (from BBC)

Can you think of better ways to prevent loitering?

From selfies to movies

This funny short film was made in two weeks, using only an iPhone and an editing app that costs less than ¥2000. An inspiration for something creative to do during your summer vacation?

From Open Culture, with a title suggesting we should be using our smart phones for more than selfies, and including some constructive criticism in the comments section.

Not just any bookstore

This is not just any bookstore. This is *the* bookstore. If you ever get to Portland, Oregon, this is the place to spend an afternoon. And maybe you’ll meet Arnold.

“Do something not once, not ten times, not a hundred but a thousand times, then that’ll make you a master of what it is you’re doing.”


  • Where’s your favorite place to spend an afternoon?
  • Where’s your favorite bookstore, cafe, or library? Does it have any interesting characters — regulars who are interesting in some way?
  • What skill are you trying to improve? Are you at the “ten times” level or the “hundred times” level? Or more?

“People in order”

More interesting than statistics? The real people behind them.

Here are three videos showing people “in order” — the first is 48 couples in order of the length of their relationship. The second is 100 people in order of age. The third is 73 households in order of income. I would really like to see a student create something like this to show the world more of Japan.