Sunday, 2 March 2008

Mousetrap - 138

Flat World
Apartment Therapy
Friends forwarded some cool staircase designs to us a while ago. Living in a rented flat, we could only forward them on to duplex-endowed friends. Then recently someone else sent us some more rad designs and we looked more closely. The site’s mission is ‘Helping people make their homes more beautiful, organized and healthy by connecting them to a wealth of resources, ideas and community online.’ And it has a wealth of cool ideas updated blog-style; focussed on a US homeowner, many of the ideas aren’t doable in the Indian context, but even a random search yielded ideas worth filing away for whenever we can buy our own home. Add to this its sister sites (all linked to from the top panel), re-nest which puts a green slant to the same basic goals, unplggd, which is tech-meets-decor, thekitchn, well d-uh, and ohdeedoh, for the kiddie spaces, and you’re bound to come away with an idea or two even for a Bombay 1BHK.

Uh O
Barack Obama Is Your New Bicycle
As the world watches, large parts of the US—or at least the bits who vote Democratic—look like being swept off their feet by a Senator only his home state knew just a year or two ago. Something about him seems to have caught voter fancy, though there isn’t much to him bar some fuzzy words about change. (Or so this column thinks; but then we don’t get the fancy pay cheques the folks on the edit pages do, so ignore us.) Anyhoo, we loved this site, which gives you, with every page-refresh, more reasons why you too should fall into the thrall of BHO. Hilarious.

..and spice.
A young lady we know sent this in with a note that said it was an ‘awesomely addictive portal’ adding, with a smiley that it was for women, ‘but I am sure men can get some tips from it.’ Forewarned, we were not traumatised by assault of that shade of pink prefixed ‘mithai’ when we were young and impressionable. Popsugar is a regularly updated, Hollywood-oriented gossip column, part of a larger network of sites from a company called Sugar Inc, all of which have the word ‘sugar’ in their names. They cover fashion, beauty, entertainment, finance, news, home and hearth, advice, kids, tech, humour, food, even pets. And if all that wasn’t enough, you also have a community site where you go shmooze with the other, erm, sugars. We had to leave. Perhaps its because we’re not target audience. Or maybe it’s because we gave up sugar many years ago. [Courtesy Divya Manian]

Now you see him..
Banksy’s a cult. He (there seems to be consensus that Banksy’s male) is a street artist. Well, actually, perhaps ‘guerrilla artist’ would be better, because his exploits aren’t restricted to the streets: this column first heard of him because of a coup he pulled off in a museum, sneaking in his own subversive works and placing them amidst more, um, famous works. But it’s his street work that’s best known, part art, part social commentary, many of them have been made into prints and sold, though the originals were spray-painted onto urban walls. Banksy, it is said, doesn’t make a penny from these. The site features his art, and it’s as official as you’re likely to get with this artist.

Reader suggestions welcome, and will be acknowledged. Go to for past columns, and to comment, or mail The writer blogs at

Published in the Times of India, Mumbai edition, 2nd March, 2008.

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