Werner Herzog Reads “Go the F**k to Sleep” in NYC (NSFW)

Sev­er­al weeks back, Go the F**k to Sleep, the irrev­er­ent new chil­dren’s book, gained nation­al atten­tion when pirat­ed PDF copies went viral on the inter­net. But don’t feel sor­ry for the author and illus­tra­tor. The book is now #1 on the Ama­zon best­seller list; Samuel Jack­son has nar­rat­ed the offi­cial audio book (you can prob­a­bly snag a free copy through this Audible.com deal); and Wern­er Her­zog delight­ed fans when he read the (not safe for work) book at the New York Pub­lic Library book par­ty held ear­li­er this week. And, yes, this is the real Wern­er Her­zog — not the imper­son­ator who passed around pop­u­lar read­ings of Curi­ous George and Twas the Night Before Christ­mas on YouTube …

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A Tour of Earth from Outer Space (in HD).

A new way to see the world. Give NASA sev­en min­utes, and they’ll show you the Earth­’s most impres­sive land­scapes — as seen from space, in HD. The coasts of Namib­ia, Tunisia and Mada­gas­car, they’re all on the itin­er­ary, along with Sici­ly, Chi­na, Iran, and Utah. Plus you will see a giant hur­ri­cane over the Atlantic ocean. Not to be missed.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Endeavour’s Launch Viewed from Boost­er Cam­eras

NASA Cap­tures Giant Solar Storm

The Best of NASA Space Shut­tle Videos (1981–2010)

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The Sounds of Jerusalem

Ophir Kutiel, aka Kuti­man, burst onto the dig­i­tal scene with The Moth­er of All Funk Chords in 2009. Now he has resur­faced with a new video. This time, it’s a musi­cal jour­ney through Jerusalem, a mashup that weaves togeth­er the sounds of local musi­cians, cre­at­ing a visual/aural com­po­si­tion that lets you tap into the unique sound of a city that lives part­ly in the past, part­ly in the future, always waver­ing between opti­mism and despair.…

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Steve Martin Releases Bluegrass Album/Animated Video

Once again, we’re remind­ed of Steve Mar­t­in’s many tal­ents — come­di­an, movie starNew York­er writerplay­wrightmagi­cian, and, yes, ban­jo play­er too. In June 2009, Mar­tin hooked up with the Steep Canyon Rangers, an Amer­i­can blue­grass band, on Gar­ri­son Keil­lor’s A Prairie Home Com­pan­ion. (Lis­ten to mp3 here.) Lat­er in 2009 and ear­ly 2010, Mar­tin made more appear­ances with the band, per­form­ing (among oth­er things) the first song ever writ­ten for hymn-deprived athe­ists. Now comes a new CD, Rare Bird Alert, which fea­tures 13 tracks, includ­ing “Jubi­la­tion Day” (watch ani­mat­ed video above) and King Tut, a blue­grass ver­sion of his 1978 clas­sic. Enjoy…

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The Ayn Rand Guide to Romance

Can Ayn Rand tell us some­thing about achiev­ing a deeply sat­is­fy­ing rela­tion­ship? It’s hard to imag­ine. She was noto­ri­ous­ly churl­ish, dumped friends and allies who did­n’t give her works pos­i­tive reviews, and cheat­ed on her hus­band with a man 24 years her junior, then even­tu­al­ly expelled the young Nathaniel Bran­den from her intel­lec­tu­al cir­cle. And heck, she even made her hus­band wear a bell on his shoe, to warn her about his com­ings and goings.

But, no mat­ter, you have to sep­a­rate the phi­los­o­phy from the per­son … or so many acolytes of flawed thinkers have argued. Right fans of John Edwards? All three of you? So here you have it, The Self­ish Path to Romance, a love man­u­al based on Ayn Rand’s Objec­tivist phi­los­o­phy. The video almost screams par­o­dy, but it’s appar­ent­ly not. You can snag a copy of the book on Ama­zon here

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Ayn Rand Helped the FBI Iden­ti­fy It’s A Won­der­ful Life as Com­mu­nist Pro­pa­gan­da

In Her Final Speech, Ayn Rand Denounces Ronald Rea­gan, the Moral Major­i­ty & Anti-Choicers (1981)

Flan­nery O’Connor: Friends Don’t Let Friends Read Ayn Rand (1960)

Ayn Rand Argues That Believ­ing in God Is an Insult to Rea­son on The Phil Don­ahue Show (Cir­ca 1979)

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Loom: A Web of Horrors in 3D Animation

You’re not squea­mish, are you? A team of stu­dents at the Fil­makademie Baden-Würt­tem­berg, in Ger­many, has tak­en the aes­thet­ic sen­si­bil­i­ties of the hor­ror and action movie gen­res and import­ed them into the realm of the micro­scop­ic, cre­at­ing a stun­ning work of 3D ani­ma­tion called Loom, about a spi­der and a very unlucky moth. Direct­ed by Jan Bitzer, Ili­ja Brunck and Csa­ba Letay of the stu­dio Poly­noid, Loom presents a high­ly styl­ized depic­tion of the the sort of vio­lence that hap­pens all around us in nature, usu­al­ly beyond our notice. Loom and anoth­er short film (Der Besuch, by Aus­tri­an direc­tor Con­rad Tam­bour) shared first prize in the ani­mat­ed film cat­e­go­ry at last mon­th’s Sehsüchte Inter­na­tion­al Stu­dent Film Fes­ti­val in Pots­dam. Despite its daz­zling tech­ni­cal bril­liance, you may find the film to be a bit … creepy.

When James Joyce Got Into a Bar Fight, He’d Yell: “Deal With Him, Hemingway!”

The nar­ra­tor of this rare clip describes James Joyce — arguably the great­est nov­el­ist of the 20th cen­tu­ry — as a “small, thin, unath­let­ic man with very bad eyes.” Ouch. And it gets worse. Accord­ing to the voiceover, when Joyce and drink­ing bud­dy Ernest Hem­ing­way faced a poten­tial brawl, Joyce would hide behind his more impos­ing com­rade and shout “Deal with him, Hem­ing­way, deal with him!!!’

But we bet they were both just hid­ing behind Gertrude Stein.

For more on Hem­ing­way’s adven­tures in fight­ing, see our post Ernest Hemingway’s Delu­sion­al Adven­tures in Box­ing: “My Writ­ing is Noth­ing, My Box­ing is Every­thing.”

If you would like to sign up for Open Culture’s free email newslet­ter, please find it here. Or fol­low our posts on Threads, Face­book, BlueSky or Mastodon.

If you would like to sup­port the mis­sion of Open Cul­ture, con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion to our site. It’s hard to rely 100% on ads, and your con­tri­bu­tions will help us con­tin­ue pro­vid­ing the best free cul­tur­al and edu­ca­tion­al mate­ri­als to learn­ers every­where. You can con­tribute through Pay­Pal, Patre­on, and Ven­mo (@openculture). Thanks!

Relat­ed Con­tent:

James Joyce Read­ing from Finnegans Wake

Ernest Hem­ing­way Reads “In Harry’s Bar in Venice”

James Joyce, With His Eye­sight Fail­ing, Draws a Sketch of Leopold Bloom (1926)

James Joyce’s Ulysses: Down­load the Free Audio Book

Sheer­ly Avni is a San Fran­cis­co-based arts and cul­ture writer. Her work has appeared in Salon, LA Week­ly, Moth­er Jones, and many oth­er pub­li­ca­tions. You can fol­low her on twit­ter at @sheerly.

Conan O’Brien Kills It at Dartmouth Graduation

The stars shined upon the Ivy League schools this grad­u­a­tion sea­son. Tom Han­ks at Yale, Amy Poehler at Har­vard, Den­zel Wash­ing­ton at U Penn. These kids have it good, but nowhere near as good as the Dart­mouth grads. This week­end, Conan O’Brien rolled into Hanover, New Hamp­shire and dished out plen­ty of jokes:

Par­ents, if your child majored in fine arts or phi­los­o­phy, you have good rea­son to be wor­ried. The only place where they are now real­ly qual­i­fied to get a job is ancient Greece. Good luck with that degree.

You know, New Hamp­shire is such a spe­cial place. When I arrived I took a deep breath of this crisp New Eng­land air and thought, “Wow, I’m in the state that’s next to the state where Ben and Jer­ry’s ice cream is made.”

To this day I can­not help but won­der: What if I had gone to Dart­mouth? If I had gone to Dart­mouth, I might have spent at least some of my col­lege years out­side and today I might not be aller­gic to all plant life, as well as most types of rock. If I had gone to Dart­mouth, right now I’d be wear­ing a fleece thong instead of a lace thong… If I had gone to Dart­mouth, I’d have a liv­er the size and con­sis­ten­cy of a bean bag chair. Final­ly, if I had gone to Dart­mouth, today I’d be get­ting an hon­orary degree at Har­vard. Imag­ine how awe­some that would be.

And a lit­tle wis­dom for life, which, hon­est­ly, holds entire­ly true.

For decades, in show busi­ness, the ulti­mate goal of every come­di­an was to host The Tonight Show. It was the Holy Grail, and like many peo­ple I thought that achiev­ing that goal would define me as suc­cess­ful. But that is not true. No spe­cif­ic job or career goal defines me, and it should not define you. In 2000—in 2000—I told grad­u­ates to not be afraid to fail, and I still believe that. But today I tell you that whether you fear it or not, dis­ap­point­ment will come. The beau­ty is that through dis­ap­point­ment you can gain clar­i­ty, and with clar­i­ty comes con­vic­tion and true orig­i­nal­i­ty.

Many of you here today are get­ting your diplo­ma at this Ivy League school because you have com­mit­ted your­self to a dream and worked hard to achieve it. And there is no greater cliché in a com­mence­ment address than “fol­low your dream.” Well I am here to tell you that what­ev­er you think your dream is now, it will prob­a­bly change. And that’s okay. Four years ago, many of you had a spe­cif­ic vision of what your col­lege expe­ri­ence was going to be and who you were going to become. And I bet, today, most of you would admit that your time here was very dif­fer­ent from what you imag­ined. Your room­mates changed, your major changed, for some of you your sex­u­al ori­en­ta­tion changed. I bet some of you have changed your sex­u­al ori­en­ta­tion since I began this speech. I know I have. But through the good and espe­cial­ly the bad, the per­son you are now is some­one you could nev­er have con­jured in the fall of 2007.

You can find the com­plete tran­script of the speech here. And don’t miss Conan’s vis­it to Google last sum­mer, which was full of good laughs…

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.