No Complaints #73: Super Soakers, Sadness and Simpsons

I’ve put a few more pictures in this week. 

Things to read

“At that time I was experimenting with a new type of refrigeration system that would use water as a working fluid instead of ozone-destroying CFCs. One evening, I machined a nozzle and hooked it up to the bathroom sink, where I was performing some experiments. It shot a powerful stream of water across the bathroom sink. That's when I got the idea that a powerful water gun would be fun! But it was months before I did anything about it.”

The man who invented the super soaker (and a lot of other very important things) looks back on his career. Email to Pocket.


“Some athletes go through a period of time… where they feel like an impostor,” she says. “They recognise that with a blink of an eye the result could have possibly turned out differently… The instant idolisation of their achievements can lead to intense and constant worry about rejection, criticism, and being ‘found out’ that they aren’t as good as everyone thinks – or that they themselves think.”

After the Olympics is over, all athletes – whether they won or not – are prone to depression. Email to Pocket.


—You should definitely read this series of tweets about Marge Simpson. It is bleak.


“I want to be clear, Man On The Web Who Was Moved To Write To Me to Inquire About My Weight, that I know I’m deeply flawed. Sometimes I’m rude and nasty and unethical and selfish and all those ugly things. None of what I’m about to tell you makes me a victim. Some of what I’m about to tell you makes me a survivor. All of it is human and real and imperfect. Just like me. And like you!”

A great example of the “Dear Angry Troll” letter. Email to Pocket.


“Williams had arrived at the office of Enthoven and his partner in his second management company, Tim Clark, one day in 1996, a year after leaving Take That. Neither man was impressed by the demo tape they were played, or by the 22-year-old singer’s general condition. Nevertheless, they agreed to a second meeting, at Williams’s flat in Maida Vale, north London, during which, as a last resort, the singer began reciting his poetry to them. “If you can do that, you can write songs,” they told him, and guided him towards a collaboration with the songwriter Guy Chambers. Among the initial results were two songs, Angels and Let Me Entertain You, that would lay the foundation for a career in which Williams would dominate the British charts and sell tens of millions of records around the world.”

Well, it was news to me that Robbie Williams got his first break by reciting his poetry at his future manager (whose obituary this is). Email to Pocket.


Things to listen to

I’ve been revisiting Note To Self this week, a WNYC show about humans and the internet. I particularly enjoyed this pair of episodes about algorithms and how to apply them to your life – apparently, when choosing a restaurant, you should evaluate 37 per cent of the available choices, and then just take the next good one that comes along.


Things to watch


Compulsory medieval thingamabob

Um, can you remember why we decided to cover ourselves in green tentacles? No, me neither.

The guest gif

It's going to be autumn soon, and I'm so excited.
THE END. See you next time*!
*Next time will probably be next Friday. If you want to suggest things I should include in the next one of these, please do reply and send me links.