Bill Nye the Science Guy designed an improved version of ballet shoes after noticing the bloody feet of on pointe dancers. Source
This is so awesome for a lot of reasons, but it’s weirdly personally relevant to me? When I was a kid, I wanted to take ballet, like I guess lots of girls do, but when I was about seven or so, I came across a very long article in some magazine about a particular professional ballerina who had since retired. She was a big deal, I guess?
Anyway, she talked about how hard it had been to do ballet, not just because of the rigorous training, but because of the positively brutal teachers and techniques involved, including how she’d regularly soak through her shoes with blood and get berated by her coaches for crying, or wanting to take breaks. I think she even talked abut one instructor actually grabbing her and physically hitting and shoving her around for having the audacity to be upset about bleeding the first time it happened. It scarred me enough that I still remember this article vividly all these years later and needless to say I did not want to take ballet anymore.
See, it’s expected for you to be in so much pain en pointe that you’re sobbing and hobbling home after rehearsing; it’s expected for you to work so hard for so long that your feet bleed in pointe shoes. There’s this whole bizarre culture built up around the expectation that the beauty of ballet=pain and sacrifice. Like, pointe shoes need to be broken in before they’re comfortable to wear, they wear out totally in 10-20 hours of pointe work—though professional dancers can go through a pair in a single performance—so this punishing agony is basically built into the art form. Even if you break in a pair of pointe shoes enough so that you aren’t in pain and bleeding all over the place, they’ll wear out like a second later whoops and then you have to start all over again. And nobody in the dance world has ever done anything to improve it because, well, that’s just how it is, right? Why question it?
BUT THEN BILL NYE, a dude who is not on the professional dance scene in any way, sees this whole foot bleeding business and thinks what any sensible human being would: “Well, that seems uncomfortable. How can I fix it?” AND THEN HE DOES IT.
Ballet has been around since the 15th century, and pointe technique has been around since the mid 1800’s, but it took BILL NYE THE SCIENCE GUY to do something about this shit. Like????
Dear future wife: this is what you give to me when it’s wedding times.
During WWII, Irena got permission to work in the Warsaw ghetto, as a Plumbing/Sewer specialist. She had an ulterior motive.
Irena smuggled Jewish infants out in the bottom of the tool box she carried. She also carried a burlap sack in the back of her truck, for larger kids.
Irena kept a dog in the back that she trained to bark when the Nazi soldiers let her in and out of the ghetto. The soldiers, of course, wanted nothing to do with the dog and the barking covered the kids/infants noises.
During her time of doing this, she managed to smuggle out and save 2500 kids/infants. Ultimately, she was caught, however, and the Nazi’s broke both of her legs and arms and beat her severely.
Irena kept a record of the names of all the kids she had smuggled out, In a glass jar that she buried under a tree in her back yard. After the war, she tried to locate any parents that may have survived and tried to reunite the family. Most had been gassed. Those kids she helped got placed into foster family homes or adopted.
In 2007 Irena was up for the Nobel Peace Prize.
She was not selected.
Al Gore won, for a slide show on Global Warming.
Irena Sendlers story in wikipedia
so last night i discovered the best superhero origin story ever - HYDROMAN!!
collected here for u all to enjoy as much as i did
"Let me inject you with this shit, bob."
A timeless classics
"I’ve got some full-length tights right here"
I don’t know what’s going on between Bob, Tom, Harry, and Joyce, but I feel like it’s at least as interesting as whatever adventures Hydroman is going to go on…
And then he met Spider-Man and his life went to shit.