The Saturday miscellany: BIG video graphics; how to make perfect coffee; can I eat soap?
THE DIGESTED FAD: BIG music video graphics
By Holly Williams
It may be less remarked upon than the nudity in the "Blurred Lines" video or Miley Cyrus's tongue-out twerking in "We Can't Stop", but both videos are in the vanguard of a typographic music video trend. Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" pre-empted internet buzz with #THICKE written over the action, while "We Can't Stop" spelt out its own name, its singer's, but also its writer's – 'MIKE WiLL made it'. Both are from director-of-the-moment, Diane Martel. But the trend is spreading: witness the new Kings of Leon video to "Supersoaker". Directed by W.I.Z., it not only ticks the Instagram retro-look box, but also spells out lyrics – 'SENTIMENTAL GIRLS' – on screen.
CAN I EAT THAT? Unorthodox digestion queries, answered. This week: soap
By Archie Bland
Well, look, it won't be very nice – washing your child's mouth out with the stuff, let's not forget, is traditionally considered a punishment rather than a treat – but if you really must consume something from the bathroom, it's probably a bit worse than toothpaste, a bit better than shampoo. Most soap is non-toxic, and if you eat a very small amount you aren't likely to keel over. Some people with an eating disorder called pica, which makes them crave inedible substances, have eaten it without immediately disastrous consequences. Keep eating it for a long period, though, or eat a sufficiently large quantity at once, and you could cause yourself serious digestive problems – diarrhoea and vomiting for a start – and even skin irritation. In summary: don't worry if you accidentally swallow a sliver in the shower, but don't go making a pie out of it.
By Ellen E Jones
Q. When I first met my 23-year-old girlfriend I let her believe I was 32. I'm actually 42. Should I tell the truth?
A. Remember that turning on your life path sign-posted 'Adult Maturity'? Well, you missed it. Doing a U-ey now is risky, but if you continue speeding along in the wrong direction, the emotional car-crash is inevitable.
@MsEllen E Jones
HOW TO: Make perfect coffee
By Liam O'Brien
Remember when a cup of coffee meant a spoonful of Nescafé? Here are three tips from Jeremy Challender of Prufrock Coffee for a tip-top brew:
First of all, you will need "desirable water". That means bottled water. "We don't consider tap water to be horrible tasting, but it will cause limescale in an espresso machine and it doesn't have a neutral PH," says Jeremy. Alkaline H20 can neutralise flavours.
Buy your beans. "I'd need a certain amount of information, such as the farmer's name or the co-operative – and I'd need to know that it was harvested fresh," says Jeremy. (This sounds like hard work, doesn't it?) Make sure it was harvested in the past 12 months.
Believe it or not, your equipment doesn't really matter – as long as it's clean. "The cafetiere, the AeroPress and the Syphon [also known as vacuum coffee]" are all effective. "For immersion brewing, you don't need anything, just use a jug," says Jeremy.
Game of Thrones
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
- 2 Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
- 3 Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees
- 4 Refugee crisis: Aylan's life was full of fear - in death, he is part of 'humanity washed ashore'
- 5 German police forced to ask public to stop bringing donations for refugees arriving by train
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 100,000 back our campaign
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up