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10 Funnier Alternatives to Lorem Ipsum

Photograph by Flickr user Blake Burkhart.

“Lorem ipsum” or ”Lorem ipsum dolor sit” is a reference to a chunk of Latin text used as filler, often in place of future text, for design purposes. It’s called that because those are the first words. The classic text is from Cicero, although it’s been scrambled enough to be barely decipherable. Lorem Ipsum was used for printing tests before the internet, but since everyone and his brother are designing websites now, we are more familiar with it than ever. And since we see it a lot, some designers are giving us alternatives to use as dummy text or to just give us a laugh. Let’s check out a few of them.

1. Riker Ipsum

Riker Ipsum generates text using lines of dialogue spoken by Commander William T. Riker in the TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation. Need more text? Hit the “more” button to add another sentence. They will be in no particular order.

I recommend you don't fire until you're within 40,000 kilometers. You did exactly what you had to do. You considered all your options, you tried every alternative and then you made the hard choice. Your head is not an artifact! I'm afraid I still don't understand, sir. You enjoyed that. Some days you get the bear, and some days the bear gets you. Wouldn't that bring about chaos? Fate. It protects fools, little children, and ships named "Enterprise." Mr. Worf, you do remember how to fire phasers? I am your worst nightmare! What? We're not at all alike! A lot of things can change in twelve years, Admiral. The look in your eyes, I recognize it. You used to have it for me.

2. Yorkshire Ipsum

Photograph by Gpmg.

A thick Yorkshire accent is barely decipherable to those outside the area. Writing English phonetically to show the accent is just as difficult to read, so it may as well be a text placeholder, as in Yorkshire Ipsum. Some of the randomly-generated phrases may be NSFW in the strict sense, but I can’t tell.

Where's tha bin. Will 'e 'eckerslike mardy bum bobbar. Face like a slapped arse soft lad dahn t'coil oil eeh wacken thi sen up soft southern pansy. Bobbar michael palin ah'll gi' thee a thick ear ne'ermind aye. Breadcake soft southern pansy tha daft apeth. Any rooad that's champion wacken thi sen up wacken thi sen up nay lad ah'll learn thi. God's own county nah then ne'ermind will 'e 'eckerslike ee by gum. Eeh appens as maybe appens as maybe ne'ermind. Th'art nesh thee is that thine be reet ee by gum. Sup wi' 'im shurrup.

3. Samuel L Ipsum

If you want to generate text that reminds you of the movie characters played by actor Samuel L. Jackson, you have your choice of generating “slipsum” with the original profanity intact in the classic version (even the landing page has NSFW text) or “slipsum lite” which only generates profanity-free quotes. The quotes are not censored, just chosen for content. It’s not even gibberish, but rants delivered by Samuel L. Jackson characters, in complete paragraphs.

Do you see any Teletubbies in here? Do you see a slender plastic tag clipped to my shirt with my name printed on it? Do you see a little Asian child with a blank expression on his face sitting outside on a mechanical helicopter that shakes when you put quarters in it? No? Well, that's what you see at a toy store. And you must think you're in a toy store, because you're here shopping for an infant named Jeb.

4. Bacon Ipsum

Photograph by Flickr user Michael Cannon.

Bacon Ipsum puts a little meat (or a lot of meat) into your placeholder text. It’s not all pork, and you can change the setting to add some Latin words to break up the nonstop carnivorage, like a palate cleanser. Warning: may cause hunger.

Chuck swine jowl ham frankfurter. Chicken salami t-bone kevin chuck ribeye pork loin pancetta leberkas short ribs jowl frankfurter andouille. Hamburger ball tip ribeye beef ribs rump t-bone shankle meatloaf sirloin kevin pork loin. Alcatra chicken sausage pork loin. Tail corned beef cupim ball tip. Tenderloin jowl bresaola, porchetta boudin corned beef fatback chuck tongue leberkas beef jerky swine prosciutto. Landjaeger jerky tri-tip pastrami porchetta doner rump cow sirloin brisket capicola kielbasa frankfurter tenderloin venison.

If the “meat and filler” version is still too meaty for you, they recommend you try Veggie Ipsum instead.

5. Cat Ipsum

Peter Tracy has a webcomic called Life Loosely Based. He also made a text generator called Cat Ipsum that generates cat-related gibberish made up of phrases any cat owner can relate to.

Pooping rainbow while flying in a toasted bread costume in space chase ball of string chew foot, and poop on grasses. Why must they do that flop over. Favor packaging over toy sleep nap and knock over christmas tree spread kitty litter all over house sweet beast. Use lap as chair give attitude poop on grasses sleep nap. Vommit food and eat it again purr while eating yet meowing non stop for food shove bum in owner's face like camera lens. Intently stare at the same spot stand in front of the computer screen purr for no reason stare at the wall, play with food and get confused by dust so present belly, scratch hand when stroked. Intrigued by the shower have secret plans. Sweet beast find something else more interesting, or stare at ceiling. Leave dead animals as gifts find something else more interesting. Lick butt. Sleep in the bathroom sink why must they do that. Intently sniff hand lick butt, and chase mice play time, but sweet beast, so cat snacks.

6. Cupcake Ipsum

Cupcake Ipsum is liable to cause cravings, or else cause you to go into sugar shock! Have a taste:

Gingerbread cake jelly pudding jelly beans. Fruitcake gingerbread wafer wafer gingerbread apple pie marshmallow. Biscuit jelly cookie dragée brownie dessert carrot cake macaroon bonbon. Unerdwear.com liquorice marshmallow fruitcake caramels dessert gingerbread. Cupcake caramels biscuit macaroon. Cookie fruitcake chocolate bar donut bonbon tiramisu cake croissant. Pastry gingerbread pastry danish halvah sweet muffin jelly. Macaroon cake icing halvah marshmallow applicake. Jelly-o cupcake lemon drops applicake macaroon donut.

7. Online Dating Ipsum

Photograph from Getty Images.

Designer Lauren Hallden developed the Online Dating Ipsum to generate the “word salad” that she says populates online dating profiles. I’ve never tried online dating, but I’ve read enough horror stories to assume that after a while all the profiles look alike. Something like this:

Introvert jazz cafes having a few beers self-deprecating humor. Degree in philosophy Vampire Weekend introvert self-deprecating humor really hoppy beers, grilling tacos really hoppy beers medical school I'm looking for. Family is very important to me bikes trying this for the first time Breaking Bad I'm really good at bored at home.

This might be useful for writing your own profile, in case you have no idea what to tell people about yourself.

8. Lorem Gibson

Photograph by David Alliet.

Lorem Gibson is a website filler text generator based on the works of contemporary novelist William Gibson. The generator has dispensed with mere verbs and connective words and focuses on nouns. For example:

hotdog systema plastic tanto concrete car refrigerator kanji physical sprawl geodesic singularity kanji. gang franchise pen cartel monofilament network tank-traps tiger-team pen wonton soup tanto motion drone. footage film drugs -ware Shibuya futurity hotdog systemic youtube Legba motion assault vinyl. sensory nodal point Chiba long-chain hydrocarbons refrigerator cyber- sensory footage neural cartel fluidity faded tanto.

9. Hipster Ipsum

Photograph by Christopher Michel.

Hipster Ipsum can also be called “hipsum.” Feel free to grab some of these words the next time you want to add more snide terms to a rant against hipsters.

Occupy McSweeney's roof party biodiesel letterpress asymmetrical. Sustainable brunch pug, put a bird on it tilde lumbersexual gluten-free banh mi chambray mumblecore pickled. Yr retro hashtag, pork belly drinking vinegar Blue Bottle disrupt butcher. Health goth small batch plaid vegan. Twee gluten-free sustainable wayfarers VHS. Fixie deep v craft beer, Williamsburg beard drinking vinegar artisan mustache yr hoodie plaid. Craft beer letterpress Kickstarter, quinoa irony sartorial freegan ennui fashion axe before they sold out sriracha migas Shoreditch slow-carb.

10. Hodor Ipsum

We don’t know the real name of the character known as Hodor from the TV series Game of Thrones, because he’s never told us what it is. Unless it’s Hodor, because that’s the only thing he says. So they call him Hodor. You can guess what you’ll get with the Hodor Ipsum generator.

Hodor. Hodor HODOR hodor, hodor hodor, hodor. Hodor hodor hodor hodor?! Hodor, hodor. Hodor. Hodor, HODOR hodor, hodor hodor; hodor hodor hodor, hodor. Hodor hodor, hodor, hodor hodor. Hodor. Hodor hodor... Hodor hodor hodor hodor! Hodor. Hodor hodor hodor - hodor, hodor, hodor hodor. Hodor. Hodor hodor hodor hodor hodor - hodor? Hodor HODOR hodor, hodor hodor hodor hodor?! Hodor. Hodor hodor... Hodor hodor hodor?

You don’t really need this generator, because if you type “Hodor” into Google Search, they will generate it for you.

Study this gibberish, and you may become as good at using it as Eric Idle of Monty Python, although it’s more likely that you’d want to use your generated text for cue cards.

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Wolfgang via Flickr // CC BY-ND 2.0
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holidays
8 Legendary Monsters of Christmas
Wolfgang via Flickr // CC BY-ND 2.0
Wolfgang via Flickr // CC BY-ND 2.0

The customs of the holiday season, which include St. Nicholas Day, New Years Day, and Epiphany, as well as Christmas, often incorporate earlier pagan traditions that have been appropriated and adapted for contemporary use. Customs that encourage little children to be good so as to deserve their Christmas gifts often come with a dark side: the punishment you'll receive from a monster or evil being of some sort if you aren't good! These nefarious characters vary from place to place, and they go by many different names and images.

1. KRAMPUS

As a tool to encourage good behavior in children, Santa serves as the carrot, and Krampus is the stick. Krampus is the evil demon anti-Santa, or maybe his evil twin. Krampus Night is celebrated on December 5, the eve of St. Nicholas Day in Austria and other parts of Europe. Public celebrations that night have many Krampuses walking the streets, looking for people to beat. Alcohol is also involved. Injuries in recent years have led to some reforms, such as requiring all Krampuses to wear numbers so they may identified in case of overly violent behavior.

Krampus may look like a devil, or like a wild alpine beast, depending on what materials are available to make a Krampus costume. In modern times, people can spend as much as they like to become the best Krampus around—and the tradition is spreading beyond Europe. Many cities in America have their own Krampus Nights now.

2. JÓLAKÖTTURINN

Jólakötturinn is the Icelandic Yule Cat or Christmas Cat. He is not a nice cat. In fact, he might eat you. This character is tied to an Icelandic tradition in which those who finished all their work on time received new clothes for Christmas, while those who were lazy did not (although this is mainly a threat). To encourage children to work hard, parents told the tale of the Yule Cat, saying that Jólakötturinn could tell who the lazy children were because they did not have at least one new item of clothing for Christmas—and these children would be sacrificed to the Yule Cat. This reminder tends to spur children into doing their chores! A poem written about the cat ends with a suggestion that children help out the needy, so they, too, can have the protection of new clothing. It's no wonder that Icelanders put in more overtime at work than most Europeans.

3. FRAU PERCHTA


Flickr // Markus Ortner

Tales told in Germany and Austria sometimes feature a witch named Frau Perchta who hands out both rewards and punishments during the 12 days of Christmas (December 25 through Epiphany on January 6). She is best known for her gruesome punishment of the sinful: She will rip out your internal organs and replace them with garbage. The ugly image of Perchta may show up in Christmas processions in Austria, somewhat like Krampus.

Perchta's story is thought to have descended from a legendary Alpine goddess of nature, who tends the forest most of the year and deals with humans only during Christmas. In modern celebrations, Perchta or a close relation may show up in processions during Fastnacht, the Alpine festival just before Lent. There may be some connection between Frau Perchta and the Italian witch La Befana, but La Befana isn't really a monster: she's an ugly but good witch who leaves presents.

4. BELSNICKEL

A drawing of Belsnickel.
Lucas, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

Belsnickel is a male character from southwestern German lore who traveled to the United States and survives in Pennsylvania Dutch customs. He comes to children sometime before Christmas, wearing tattered old clothing and raggedy fur. Belsnickel carries a switch to frighten children and candy to reward them for good behavior. In modern visits, the switch is only used for noise, and to warn children they still have time to be good before Christmas. Then all the children get candy, if they are polite about it. The name Belsnickel is a portmanteau of the German belzen (meaning to wallop) and nickel for St. Nicholas. See a video of a Belsnickel visit here.

Knecht Ruprecht and Ru Klaas are similar characters from German folklore who dole out beatings to bad children, leaving St. Nicholas to reward good children with gifts.

5. HANS TRAPP

Hans Trapp is another "anti-Santa" who hands out punishment to bad children in the Alsace and Lorraine regions of France. The legend says that Trapp was a real man, a rich, greedy, and evil man, who worshiped Satan and was excommunicated from the Catholic Church. He was exiled into the forest where he preyed upon children, disguised as a scarecrow with straw jutting out from his clothing. He was about to eat one boy he captured when he was struck by lightning and killed—a punishment of his own from God. Still, he visits young children before Christmas, dressed as a scarecrow, to scare them into good behavior.

6. PÈRE FOUETTARD

The French legend of Père Fouettard, whose name translates to "Father Whipper," begins with an evil butcher who craved children to eat. He (or his wife) lured three boys into his butcher shop, where he killed, chopped, and salted them. St. Nicholas came to the rescue, resurrected the boys, and took custody of the butcher. The captive butcher became Père Fouettard, St. Nicholas' servant whose job it is to dispense punishment to bad children on St. Nicholas Day.

7. THE YULE LADS

The Jólasveinar, or Yule Lads, are 13 Icelandic trolls, who each have a name and distinct personality. In ancient times, they stole things and caused trouble around Christmastime, so they were used to scare children into behaving, like the Yule Cat. However, the 20th century brought tales of the benevolent Norwegian figure Julenisse (Santa Claus), who brought gifts to good children. The traditions became mingled, until the formerly devilish Jólasveinar became kind enough to leave gifts in shoes that children leave out ... if they are good boys and girls. 

8. GRÝLA

All the Yule Lads answer to Grýla, their mother. She predates the Yule Lads in Icelandic legend as the ogress who kidnaps, cooks, and eats children who don't obey their parents. She only became associated with Christmas in the 17th century, when she was assigned to be the mother of the Yule Lads. According to legend, Grýla had three different husbands and 72 children, all who caused trouble ranging from harmless mischief to murder. As if the household wasn't crowded enough, the Yule Cat also lives with Grýla. This ogress is so much of a troublemaker that The Onion blamed her for the 2010 eruption of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano.

A version of this post originally ran in 2013. See also: more Legendary Monsters

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History
84 Years Ago Today: Goodbye Prohibition!
A huge queue outside the Board of Health offices in Centre Street, New York, for licenses to sell alcohol shortly after the repeal of prohibition. The repeal of prohibition was a key policy of Franklin Roosevelt's government as it allowed the government an opportunity to raise tax revenues at a time of economic hardship.
A huge queue outside the Board of Health offices in Centre Street, New York, for licenses to sell alcohol shortly after the repeal of prohibition. The repeal of prohibition was a key policy of Franklin Roosevelt's government as it allowed the government an opportunity to raise tax revenues at a time of economic hardship.
Keystone/Getty Images

It was 84 years ago today that the Twenty-First Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, repealing the earlier Amendment that declared the manufacture, sale, and transport of alcohol illegal in the United States. Prohibition was over! Booze that had been illegal for 13 years was suddenly legal again, and our long national nightmare was finally over.


A giant barrel of beer, part of a demonstration against prohibition in America.
Henry Guttmann/Getty Images

Prohibition of alcohol was not a popular doctrine. It turned formerly law-abiding citizens into criminals. It overwhelmed police with enforcement duties and gave rise to organized crime. In cities like Milwaukee and St. Louis, the dismantling of breweries left thousands of people unemployed.


Photograph courtesy of the Boston Public Library

Homemade alcohol was often dangerous and some people died from drinking it. Some turned to Sterno or industrial alcohol, which was dangerous and sometimes poisoned by the government to discourage drinking. State and federal governments were spending a lot of money on enforcement, while missing out on taxes from alcohol.


New York City Deputy Police Commissioner John A. Leach (right) watches agents pour liquor into sewer following a raid during the height of Prohibition.

The midterm elections of 1930 saw the majority in Congress switch from Republican to Democratic, signaling a shift in public opinion about Prohibition as well as concerns about the depressed economy. Franklin Roosevelt, who urged repeal, was elected president in 1932. The Twenty-first Amendment to the Constitution was proposed by Congress in February of 1933, the sole purpose of which was to repeal the Eighteenth Amendment establishing Prohibition.


American men guarding their private beer brewing hide-out, during Prohibition.
Keystone/Getty Images

With passage of the Constitutional Amendment to repeal Prohibition a foregone conclusion, a huge number of businessmen lined up at the Board of Health offices in New York in April of 1933 to apply for liquor licenses to be issued as soon as the repeal was ratified.

The Amendment was ratified by the states by the mechanism of special state ratifying conventions instead of state legislatures. Many states ratified the repeal as soon as conventions could be organized. The ratifications by the required two-thirds of the states was achieved on December 5, 1933, when conventions in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Utah agreed to repeal Prohibition through the Amendment.


Workmen unloading crates of beer stacked at a New York brewery shortly after the repeal of Prohibition.
Keystone/Getty Images

A brewery warehouse in New York stacked crates past the ceiling to satisfy a thirsty nation after the repeal of Prohibition.


Keystone/Getty Images

Liquor wouldn't officially be legal until December 15th, but Americans celebrated openly anyway, and in most places, law enforcement officials let them.

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