Welcome to Content Catnip

Content Catnip

Quirky Internet Wunderkammer


Comforting Thought

Bite-sized comfort and spirituality in a turmultuous world


The Sensual World of The Unseen By Photographer Duane Michaels

Comforting Thought: Humans are hardwired to be attracted to imperfection

Humans instinctively understand the organic imperfections of the human face, however we experience a ‘visual shock’ when we see severe disfigurement. Taken from the fascinating book ‘You May Also Like’ by Tom Vanderbilt. There is one brain response that never falters – severe disfigurement. And so Bacon’s ‘Visual Shock’ as he calls it seems toContinue reading “Comforting Thought: Humans are hardwired to be attracted to imperfection”

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Ancient Word of the Day

Words dredged up from the pelagic zone of language


The Three Blind Mice nursery rhyme

Ancient Word of the Day: Nightmarish Nursery Rhymes

The sweet little rhymes and refrains that fills out childhoods are actually full of ghoulish and gruesome revelations. Here are some creepy examples… The rhythmic patterns of nursery rhymes provided an ideal framework for infants and children to develop language. Mary, Mary, quite contrary,How does your garden grow?With silver bells, and cockle shells,And pretty maidsContinue reading “Ancient Word of the Day: Nightmarish Nursery Rhymes”

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10 Cool Things I Found On the Internet

A weekly palate cleanser of quirky wonder


The Heartless by Super Rare

10 Interesting Things I Found on the Internet #80

Did you know that if you contemplate the following items you may find your heart relieved of weight and stress. Or you may feel confused or intrigued…in any case you should not take while pregnant or with alcohol. Hope you enjoy… Obscure cat breeds Here are some cat breeds you may not know of… ArtContinue reading “10 Interesting Things I Found on the Internet #80”

The Living Room Cat by Dawning Crow

10 Interesting Things I Found on the Internet #79

Hello hyperactive howler monkeys and restless gibbons and welcome to another edition of interesting things from the internet. I know you are all keen to get into it so here it is for you… A trippy 3D interactive painting ‘Nose Garden’ by Doris Liou Like stumbling upon a hidden enchanted part of a rainforest… ToContinue reading “10 Interesting Things I Found on the Internet #79”

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Book Reviews

Mind-expanding fantasy, quirky history books and more


Book Review: The Flip: Who You Really Are and Why it Matters by Jeffrey Kripal

Book Review: The Flip: Who You Really Are and Why it Matters by Jeffrey Kripal

Publisher: Penguin Genre: Non-Fiction, Psychology, Parapsychology, Spirituality, Science, Epistemiology Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 Prepare to have your mind blown a few times in a delightful way by this book. It’s really refreshing to read something science-y that is not afraid to delve into the ‘Twilight Zone’ so to speak. It’s difficult to put this book into theContinue reading “Book Review: The Flip: Who You Really Are and Why it Matters by Jeffrey Kripal”

Book Review: The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Dr Elaine Aron

Book Review: The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Dr Elaine Aron

Publisher: Penguin Genre: Non-Fiction, Psychology, Spirituality. Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 This is the quintessential book about the trait of high sensitivity in people’s personalities. Beautifully written, engaging and informative, it has become a classic of psychology since it was first published in 1996. In case you are unaware of how this personality trait looks, here is aContinue reading “Book Review: The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Dr Elaine Aron”

Book Review: The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain and Body in the Transformation of Trauma by Bessel Van Der Kolk

Book Review: The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain and Body in the Transformation of Trauma by Bessel Van Der Kolk

Publisher: Penguin Genre: Non-Fiction, Psychology Rating: 🌟🌟🌟 This is a comprehensive guide to trauma. Unlike other guides, it places emphasis on the physical body and how past buried traumas are inextricably connected to the body, or in other words: ‘The Body Keeps the Score’. Although this book is more of a clinical guide for psychologists,Continue reading “Book Review: The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain and Body in the Transformation of Trauma by Bessel Van Der Kolk”

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Artists, Writers & Musicians In Their Own Words

Unique and inspiring art by interesting people


Boplicity # 2 Collage by Wayne HW Wolfson

Artists and Writers In Their Own Words: Wayne Wolfson

Northern Californian artist and writer Wayne H.W. Wolfson is completely self-taught and has had an expansive career. He has amassed a large body of work in a riot of colours and eclectic styles. This makes him one of the most striking, interesting and chameleon-like artists around. I have written and compulsively doodled since my earliestContinue reading “Artists and Writers In Their Own Words: Wayne Wolfson”

"Valley flowers" 50 cm by Monica Olivia

Artists & Writers in their Own Words: Monica Olivia

Introducing my poetic, spiritual, wise and beautiful friend from Norwegian Lapland Monica Olivia. She is a self-taught Sámi artist who makes art of mind-blowing beauty using a palette of vivid hues found in the most northerly regions of the earth. Monica also has a spiritually nourishing and beautiful blog ‘Ask the Mountains‘ where she writesContinue reading “Artists & Writers in their Own Words: Monica Olivia”

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The Natural World

Organisms, real, imagined, extinct and extant.


The Sky Bastard Who Ate My Ancestors in New Zealand

The Sky Bastard Who Ate My Ancestors in New Zealand

Here is another rough diamond plucked from the caverns of Content Catnip’s vault, this post from 2014 and resuscitated for your enjoyment. I still love megafauna just as much, even now. Introducing the Sky Bastard who once sparked universal terror in the hearts of my Māori ancestors. Common Name: Haast’s Eagle Scientific Name: Harpagornis moorei (DiscoveredContinue reading “The Sky Bastard Who Ate My Ancestors in New Zealand”

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Te Ao Māori

All about the indigenous culture of Aotearoa, New Zealand


Comforting Thought: Saying sorry will go a long way

Kuoa rongo ake au… Akakoa iti noa te kuru pounamu He taonga tuku iho kia kaha, kia toa, kia māiai, kia mataara kia manawanui I have learned… A thoughtful note to someone you’ve avoided Saying sorry will go a long way

Moonlit duet by Kaii Higashiyama (2003)

Words and Music: Call on a karakia

Kua rongo ake au… Mā te karakia mā te īnoi, mā te noho puku Ka taea e au ngā mea katoa I have learned… That I can call upon a karakia When I look for solutions to the Challenges that face me.

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Content Catnip TV

Transportative videos made by Content Catnip


Content Catnip TV: Team Lab Borderless, Tokyo

Content Catnip TV: Team Lab Borderless, Tokyo

TeamLab Borderless in Tokyo is a remarkable audio-visual attraction in Tokyo and a must-see in the city if you ever visit. It’s on expansive, harbour-facing area of Odaiba which is encircled by the very scenic train ride, along with excellent shopping centre Diver City, which features a showcase level of award-winning ramen restaurants from throughoutContinue reading “Content Catnip TV: Team Lab Borderless, Tokyo”

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Travel Tales

Nostalgic travel from the time before ‘you know whathappened


The terrace houses of Sevilla, Spain

Travel: The Beautiful Terrace Windows of Triana, Sevilla

Back in 2010 during a particularly sweltering summer, I visited Andalucia and soaked in the beautiful architecture in Sevilla. The best way to see all of the charming neighbourhoods and historic monuments was going the tourist routes with an open-top bus. This also afforded me excellent views onto all of the terrace houses with theirContinue reading “Travel: The Beautiful Terrace Windows of Triana, Sevilla”

A fat guy wears a T shirt saying - 'There are rumours floating around that I may be divine' - Chodza pogloski ze jestem boski

Travel: Kolejcowo is a cute and creepy version of Poland in miniature

When I was in Poland in 2019, I didn’t hesitate to visit the Kolejcowo in Świebodzki Station in Wrocław. This is the largest model railway in Poland, but also a rather amazing depiction of how life in Poland actually looks. Everything, right down to the petrol stations, graffiti, and the shops actually exists in realContinue reading “Travel: Kolejcowo is a cute and creepy version of Poland in miniature”

Cuba Dupa Wellington 2021

Each year at the end of March there is a street festival in Wellington. Cuba Dupa is always vibrant, vibrational and brings out the wild and vivacious side of the little city. Even though I’m a total introvert, strangely enough I really like loud concerts and street festivals where I can dance and have aContinue reading “Cuba Dupa Wellington 2021”

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Obscure Music

Unusual little-heard music to inspire creativity


The art of Kulning: Night-scented stock are called in for the long summer evening

The art of Kulning: Night-scented stock are called in for the long summer evening

Kulning is an ancient, sweet and sorrowful form of Scandinavian music used to herd cows and goats back down from their high mountain pastures in parts of Norway and in certain provinces of Sweden, Jämtland and Härjedalen. In practical use since medieval times, the mysterious tones were also thought to be a deterrent to potential predators like wolvesContinue reading “The art of Kulning: Night-scented stock are called in for the long summer evening”

An awesome playlist low-fi / house / ambient / psychedelic artists from New Zealand

Awesome low-fi / house / ambient / psychedelic artists from New Zealand

Skip to the end for an amazing playlist of these artists on Youtube Aldous Harding From Christchurch, Aldous Harding is known throughout the world for her strange, unnerving stage presence and her delicate and yet raw brand of folk. She’s quite enigmatic and unlike any other artist. You may take a while to warm toContinue reading “Awesome low-fi / house / ambient / psychedelic artists from New Zealand”

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Quirky History

Lesser-known morsels of olden day stuff


Netsuke & Gashapon toys Ancient Japanese treasures and modern collectibles

Netsuke are uniquely Japanese and sublime in their beauty. They are tiny objects carved of ivory, ceramic, wood, tortoise-shell, gold or many other materials. They tell the story of the culture of Japan during the old Edo period and before. Netsuke featured fishermen and farmers, who rubbed shoulders with scholars, samurai warriors, royalty and evenContinue reading “Netsuke & Gashapon toys Ancient Japanese treasures and modern collectibles”

Ancient word of the day: Twankle

Ancient word of the day: Twankle

Twankle To twang your fingers on a musical instrument or absent-mindedly strum or play an instrument without thought. Other concatenations include: Twiddling, twandling, tootling, plunking, noodling, thrummling or tudeling. Tudeling (origin) German dudeln – to perform badly. The crappiest song that almost everyone can play on the piano Chopsticks was invented in 1877 by composerContinue reading “Ancient word of the day: Twankle”

The Most Beautiful Maps on Earth

Map Porn Part 2: The Most Beautiful Geological Maps on Earth

Where Art Meets Science Scientific visualisations often can look just like objects of visual art. The previous installation of this series, there were topographical surveys visualised on both our moon and Jupiter’s moon. This time, we are focusing on our own Pale Blue Dot. These maps are not only utilitarian and functional, they are worksContinue reading “Map Porn Part 2: The Most Beautiful Geological Maps on Earth”

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