The LEGO Group Is Releasing a Central Perk Set for the 25th Anniversary of Friends

The LEGO Group
The LEGO Group

Chandler, Joey, Monica, Phoebe, Rachel, and Ross will forever be memorialized as six New Yorkers who spent an inordinate number of business hours lounging on a burnt-orange couch in the fictional café Central Perk. And to celebrate this year’s 25th anniversary of the Friends premiere in 1994, the LEGO Group is releasing a collection with a recreation of the Central Perk TV studio set.

The coffee shop in brick form is an expertly designed rendering of its real-life counterpart. The iconic couch and its surrounding furniture are at the center, the stage area is to the right next to the entrance doors, Gunther’s counter is to the left, and the service exit is in the back. Two television cameras flank the upper front corners of the set, which you might recognize if you were lucky enough to be an audience member at one of the live tapings.

LEGO Friends Central Perk Set
The LEGO Group

Although the layout of the set is impressive in its own right, its details truly capture the essence of the beloved NBC sitcom. The “reserved” sign sits on the coffee table, the platter on the service counter is stocked with baked goods, and two umbrellas occupy the umbrella stand by the door. The café is also peppered with flower vases and 15 coffee mugs.

The collection includes figurines of all six friends, plus Gunther, and they each wield very apt accessories. Joey comes with a pizza box, pizza slice, and “man bag"; Monica munches a muffin; Chandler totes a laptop; Gunther brandishes a broom; Rachel carries a tray and mug from her ill-fated waitressing days; Phoebe holds her guitar, perhaps strumming “Smelly Cat” or a lesser-known tune like “Parading Goats” or “My Papier-Mâché Man”; and Ross flaunts his keyboard, doomed to be unappreciated during his time by anybody but Phoebe.

LEGO Friends Central Perk Set
The LEGO Group

With a total of 1070 pieces, the set will satisfy your construction craving just as well as any Star Wars ship would, and it could also give you the opportunity to usher in a new generation of Friends superfans (if you’re willing to share your new toy with kids). Keep an eye out for it online and in LEGO stores starting September 1.

Family Game Night Just Got a Lot Cozier With This Inflatable Twister Game

Hammacher Schlemmer & Company
Hammacher Schlemmer & Company

With the potential for strained muscles and painful tumbles on your living room floor, Twister doesn't have a reputation for being the most comfortable board game. This unofficial version of the activity should hopefully lead to less bruising. As PopSugar reports, Hammacher Schlemmer & Company has upgraded the classic Twister mat to become a giant, inflatable play-board.

The inflatable game has all the elements of the original Twister: There are red, green, yellow, and blue dots (16 of each color) lined up on a white surface and a spinning wheel that shows you which limb to place where.

Normally the board is a flat sheet, but this one resembles a super-sized blow-up mattress. It measures 15 feet long, 15 feet wide, and 15 inches tall. A 1-hp air blower is included, and you can keep it running as you play so you don't have to worry about the board deflating and throwing off your balance. The game, which is capable of supporting up to 1500 pounds, is the perfect outdoor party accessory.

Contorting your body in relative comfort will cost you: The inflatable game costs $2000—about 100 times the price of a regular Twister board. If you can't resist adding it to your game collection, you can order it from Hammacher Schlemmer's website.

[h/t PopSugar]

The Bird or Bunny Optical Illusion Could Have You Second-Guessing Your Eyesight

jamesvancouver/iStock via Getty Images
jamesvancouver/iStock via Getty Images

The internet can't resist a mind-bending illusion. Some of the most popular ones to go viral feature content that can be interpreted two ways: The infamous dress ignited a web-wide controversy over whether it was black and blue or white and gold, and the "yanny or laurel" audio clip messed with people's ears instead of their eyes. The latest illusion the internet can't agree on is a video of someone petting a raven—or is it a rabbit? Watch the clip below and decide for yourself.

Paige Davis, the curator of bird training at the World Bird Sanctuary, shared this video of a white-necked raven more than two years ago. A biological psychiatry researcher named Dan Quintana recently found the clip on Imgur's Twitter account and tweeted it with the caption: "Rabbits love getting stroked on their nose."

"By first directing the viewer's attention to the nose, I was trying to distract viewers from the ears/beak, one of the clear giveaways that this was a video of a raven," Quintana wrote in a blog post.

With its head tilted back, it's easy to mistake the raven's beak for bunny ears and the top of its head for a nose. But a few details—like its translucent nictitating membrane that closes across the eye horizontally—indicate that it's really a bird.

This video is a real-life version of one of the most famous illustrated illusions of all time. Like the raven vs. rabbit clip, this drawing, sketched by American psychologist Joseph Jastrow in 1899, depicts either a duck facing left or a bunny facing right. There is no "right" way to view this illusion: Jastrow drew it to see how fast viewers could switch from one perception to the other.

Even though we know which animal the subject of this latest illusion really is, it still works with Jastrow's test: Watch the clip again and see if you can force your mind to go back and forth between seeing a bird and a rabbit. After that exercise, here are some more optical illusions to break your brain.

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