Snail Mail My E-Mail

So here's something pretty amazing: An artist and designer named Ivan Cash has decided to give back to the world in the form of snail mail. No, I don't mean junk snail mail. I mean, you can type an e-mail, send it to Ivan via his new, temporary Web site and voila he not only turns your e-mail into good ol' fashioned snail mail, but he pays the postage too! And get this: he'll mail it anywhere in the world. It's all part of a 30-day charity endeavor/interactive art project that Ivan says "seeks to both share the warm-fuzzy feeling of receiving a personalized letter as well as inspire people to send their own snail mail."

So how does it work? Simple:

1. Write a 100-word-max e-mail you want snail-mailed to someone

2. Request one custom option from his menu (like, a doodle, or a flower)

3.  Send it to snailmailmyemail 'at'

Pretty nifty, eh? I'll tell you what, if any of you _flossers send me a snail mail to our corporate mental_floss address (found here), I'll make a donation to your favorite charity - just to keep in the spirit of Ivan's very awesome site!

(Hat tip to my pal @phampants for tweeting me the linkage!)

How to Book a Daytime Stay in a Hotel—No Overnight Required

Hotels are a crucial part of traveling, but it seems they’re always off-limits when you need them most. If you’re severely jet lagged and have a nine-hour layover during the day, you’re stuck napping on an airport bench. Another common dilemma is deciding what to do when you check out of your hotel room at noon but don’t have to catch your flight home until midnight.

As Lonely Planet reports, there are a couple of services tailored to travelers in need of a place to rest during daylight hours. One is, a booking platform that offers daylong hotel stays in 22 countries. The rates can be as much as 75 percent cheaper than overnight rates, according to the French company. For example, a hotel near New York City’s LaGuardia Airport costs about $110 to reserve for the hours of 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The site offers daytime discounts on more than 4000 hotels. Many of the booking deals come with services that are typically reserved for overnight guests, including spas, swimming pools, gyms, meeting rooms, and more. It’s not necessary to set up an account on the website, and customers can pay directly at the hotel instead of in advance via credit card. And if your flight comes in late, that’s no problem either; cancellations can be made up until the very last minute, free of charge.

Another platform, ByHours, caters mostly to hotels in Europe and South America. The Spain-based company offers “microstay” deals at more than 3000 hotels, and guests can choose to stay in blocks of three, six or 12 hours at a time. Most of the hotels are three- and four-star properties, but if you’re looking for a taste of true luxury—even if just for a few hours—you can choose from about 100 five-star hotels on the site.

[h/t Lonely Planet]

7 Brilliantly Useless Websites You Won't Believe Exist

by Jenny Morrill

Bored at work? It's OK—everyone needs to take a break at some point during the day. (Trust us, it's science.) But checking social media or catching up on the latest news may not be the best way to spend your downtime. Perhaps you should try watching an animated taco spin around your browser instead.

Below, we've collected seven useless, whimsical, and just-plain-weird websites to waste your time on. Try not to get addicted.


A hard-shell taco spins on a white background, labeled with the number four.
Screenshot via Taco Spin

This one is even more mindless than you might imagine. It's a taco. It spins. Seriously, that's it. There is, however, a fabulous soundtrack. And it counts the number of spins you've watched, so staring at it for long enough starts to feel like an accomplishment.


A screenshot from The Most Seconds reads 'You have been here for 20 seconds.'
Screenshot via The Most Seconds

How many seconds can you stand the boredom of watching this number increase?


An off-white image reads 'No Spoilers!'

Here's a handy guide to checking whether or not your computer is on. (If you're a fan of this one, we must refer you to that other wonderfully informative site, Is It Christmas?)


An entirely magenta image

Screenshot via Random Colour

The idea behind Random Colour is incredibly simple, but at least you get the element of surprise. Every time you refresh the page, the entire site turns a new color. Warning: Fiddling around with this one for too long will definitely give you a headache.


Blocks of color appear to fall backward off the page.
Screenshot via Falling Falling

This color-themed site is a little more dynamic than Random Colour, but just as pointless. The colors endlessly fall off the page. Totally hypnotic.


A hand-drawn arrow points to a box for the reader to click under a banner that reads 'Useless Site.'
Screenshot via Useless Site

Yes, it's as useless as the name promises, yet somehow, it's not even the most useless site on this list. Go ahead, click that checkbox—you'll keep clicking for way longer than you should.


A series of llama drawings in the shape of letters spells out 'I love llamas!'
Screenshot via Llama Font

Llama Font is a site made for those few people who reside firmly in the middle of the Venn diagram of "typography geeks" and "fans of South American camelids." You can spell out anything using illustrated llamas. And no matter how long your sentences run, these llamas won't lead you on a high-speed chase.


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