Frank Abagnale, of Catch Me If You Can fame, gave a talk at Google a few months ago. From the moment he started speaking I was hooked on every word. That was a great movie, but this talk may be even better.
I was one of those few children who got to grow up in the world with a daddy. The world is full of fathers, but there are very few men worthy of being called daddy by their child. I had a daddy who loved his children more than he loved life itself.
My father was a man who had four children: three boys and a daughter. Every night at bedtime he’d walk into your room. He would drop down on one knee, kiss you on the cheek, pull the cover up, and put his lip on your earlobe and whisper, “I love you very much.” He never, ever missed a night.
Years later my older brother joined me in my room temporarily. He was in the Marine Corps, he was 6’4″, he played semi-pro football for Buffalo, but my father would walk around to his bed, hug him, kiss him, whisper in his ear he loved him.
I’ve discovered a fantastic YouTube series from the UK called Carpool. It’s Robert Llewellyn (of Red Dwarf fame) chatting to other celebrities while driving somewhere. It’s simple, it’s entertaining, it’s brilliant. Unlike a traditional chat show with an audience and question cards, the conversation is much less formal and much more interesting. See Tim Minchin or Sir Patrick Stewart or Brian Cox or David Mitchell, just for a start.
The series is several years old now, but it all holds up just fine.
This animated short from Chapman University in 2014 is spectacular. The video’s original summary description puts it best: “A chance encounter proves fateful for two robots mining on a desolate planet.”
I’ve become a little obsessed with All the Stations, in which a pair of YouTubers are journeying to all 2,563 railway stations in Great Britain. They’re not getting out at every station, but are at terminus stations and major interchanges, so in addition to a lot of footage of railways (and who doesn’t need a lot of footage of railways), you also see local people and landmarks and castles (so many castles).
A company called teehan+max has developed an engine for taking Google Street View images and building video time lapses — basically reconstructing what you might have seen if you were aboard Google’s car, perhaps staring at interesting nearby landmarks. The result is this:
I think “Les Misérables on a modern airline” is really all I need to say about this. Though I’ll add that it’s absolutely fantastic.
For example, I Dreamed a Dream begins:
I dreamed a dream that I could fly non-stop from Baltimore to Phoenix. And I’d be smiling in the sky, not down here crying in a kleenex. When I was young, flights weren’t delayed. And better in-flight food was tasted. There were no bag fees to be paid. No frequent flyer miles were wasted.
But the fees now come in spades. And you fear you’ll be blacklisted. Airlines tear your hope apart. And they turn your dreams to shame.
I kept a carry-on by my side. They made me check it in as baggage. A hefty fee was then applied! And it was gone at baggage claim.