NEW YORK (AP) — Slime, the bedazzled, stretchy sensation that has spawned its own social media influencers and fans of all ages, is taking up residence in New York City.
An immersive, 8,000-square-foot museum dedicated to all things slime opens today for a nearly six-month celebration complete with a sticky barefoot lake walk and DIY bar. There’s also the opportunity to don goggles and a poncho and get doused in the stuff that has a big following but a questionable impact when it comes to disposal and the environment.
The brainchild of Karen Robinovitz, Sara Schiller and Toni Ko, the so-called Sloomoo Institute is the latest in Instagram-friendly pop-ups (hello “Friends” 25th anniversary and Museum of Ice Cream) to hit New York and then travel to other locales. Why Sloomoo? There’s a thing in the slime community where you replace the vowels in your name with “oo,” so slime = sloomoo.
The idea, the co-founders said during a pre-opening tour, is simple: To spread slime’s powers of rejuvenation and relaxation. Skeptical? There’s a nook with an EEG machine to actually show your brain on slime.
There’s also a glow-in-the-dark cove and an ASMR tunnel for slime’s visual and auditory qualities, further ballyhooing the restful and spine-tingly autonomous sensory meridian response that has exploded in no-talking videos on YouTube.
“The social media aspect of slime has really shown community,” Robinovitz said. “There’s a lot of sensibility in the world that social media can isolate people. What we’ve seen in the slime world is that people are coming together.”
There are slime conventions, online shops and meet-and-greets with top influencers that draw thousands of fans at a time.
Nichole Jackylne, 23, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, is a top slimer enlisted by Sloomoo. She’s been on YouTube since 2013, taking on fashion and other content before she settled on slime nearly three years ago.
“I found out how to make slime on Pinterest and just went from there,” Jackylne said as she sat in the museum’s front window with a huge tub of pink slime on her lap, rows of Elmer’s glue gallon jugs on shelves behind her. “I never thought, even for a million years, that I would be making a living off slime.”
Jackylne brings in between $5,000 and $10,000 a month from merchandise and slime-making supplies she sells online. That doesn’t take into account her YouTube ad income and partnerships. She has nearly a million followers on YouTube.
“I consider myself more of a slime lifestyle personality,” Jackylne said. “I don’t just post slime. I try to keep it about my personality, so I’ll film blogs of myself shopping for slime supplies or just out in the public making slime content.”
Not exclusively solid or liquid, slime is often made — to the bane of germophobes and neatnik parents — by mixing the mineral-based cleaning product Borax, glue and water, along with liquid scents, coloring and “toppings” that are all the rage, including tiny toys and plastic-based glitter. Some variations are made with clay.
The varieties and scents are endless. Noting glitter and other potential eco-foes were deliberately left out of Sloomoo’s slime, Robinovitz showed off varieties that pull like weightless clouds (fake snow is mixed in), crackle because of plastic beads inside or shine with a high gloss and a tough pull.
At the DIY bar, where 8 ounces of slime is included in the $38 base ticket price, scents include banana cream pie, Froot Loops and prickly pear. The get-slimed experience is $30 extra.
Hand wipes are liberally distributed throughout Sloomoo with the plea that people use them before and after touching the huge bowls of slime placed along a walking route. The slime will be changed throughout each day.
Michelle Diaz, 36, the mother of two girls — 16 and 11 — regularly makes slime at home. Does she mind the mess?
“I do but it’s inevitable sometimes,” she laughed as she and her oldest daughter, Iyanna, peaked into Sloomoo’s window as Jackylne stretched and twirled her creation. “We make it different ways, with stuff out of your cupboard, from flour to Vaseline. But I don’t do Play-Doh, because Play-Doh gets stuck. The slime doesn’t really get stuck on anything.”
Technically speaking, slime is a cross-linked polymer scientifically known as a “non-Newtonian fluid.” Its history stretches back to the 1830s, when polymer science originated and Nathaniel Hayward and Friedrich Ludersdorf concluded that adding sulfur to raw, natural rubber prevented it from getting sticky.
As toys, and in TV and film, slime has been a part of the cultural landscape for decades. Silly Putty went to the moon on Apollo 8 in 1968. The 1962 movie “Son of Flubber” starred goopy slime that could fly and spawned a toy product called Flubber, but it made people sick and was yanked from the market, according to a timeline on two walls at Sloomoo.
Mattel launched a jiggly slime as a toy in 1976. It came in a plastic garbage can.
Nickelodeon has been all in on slime for years, since it rebroadcast a Canadian show, “You Can’t Do that On Television,” starting in the 1980s. The show slimed participants who answered questions with “I don’t know.” The network launched its own slimy show, “Double Dare,” in 1986 and has been sliming celebrity winners of its Kids’ Choice Awards since 1987.
In 2014, slime videos from Thailand spread around the globe and the DIY slime phenomenon took off, particularly among young girls.
“When Nichole Jackylne does events there are girls lined up to meet her,” Robinovitz said, “because they love her slime and they love what she stands for, which is truly representing joy.”
By LEANNE ITALIE Associated Press
9-year-old genius to graduate university
(CNN) – A child prodigy from Belgium is on course to gain a bachelor’s degree at the tender age of 9.
Laurent Simons is studying electrical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) — a tough course even for students of an average graduate age.
Described by staff as “simply extraordinary,” Laurent is on course to finish his degree in December.
He then plans to embark on a PhD program in electrical engineering while also studying for a medicine degree, his father told CNN.
His parents, Lydia and Alexander Simons, said they thought Laurent’s grandparents were exaggerating when they said he had a gift, but his teachers soon concurred.
“They noticed something very special about Laurent,” said Lydia.
Laurent was given test after test as teachers tried to work out the extent of his talents. “They told us he is like a sponge,” said Alexander.
While Laurent comes from a family of doctors, his parents have so far not received any explanation as to why their child prodigy is capable of learning so quickly.
But Lydia has her own theory.
“I ate a lot of fish during the pregnancy,” she joked.
The TUE has allowed Laurent to complete his course faster than other students.
“That is not unusual,” said Sjoerd Hulshof, education director of the TUE bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, in a statement.
“Special students that have good reasons for doing so can arrange an adjusted schedule. In much the same way we help students who participate in top sport.”
Hulshof said Laurent is “simply extraordinary” and praised the youngster.
“Laurent is the fastest student we have ever had here,” he said. “Not only is he hyper intelligent but also a very sympathetic boy.”
Laurent told CNN his favorite subject is electrical engineering and he’s also “going to study a bit of medicine.”
His progress has not gone unnoticed and he is already being sought out by prestigious universities around the world, although Laurent’s family wouldn’t be drawn on naming which of them he is considering for his PhD.
“The absorption of information is no problem for Laurent,” said his father.
“I think the focus will be on research and applying the knowledge to discover new things.”
While Laurent is evidently able to learn faster than most, his parents are being careful to let him enjoy himself too.
“We don’t want him to get too serious. He does whatever he likes,” said Alexander. “We need to find a balance between being a child and his talents.”
Laurent said he enjoys playing with his dog Sammy and playing on his phone, like many young people.
However, unlike most 9-year-olds, he has already worked out what he wants to do with his life: develop artificial organs.
In the meantime, Laurent has to finish his bachelor’s degree and choose which academic institution will play host to the next stage in his remarkable journey.
Before that, he plans on taking a vacation to Japan for an undoubtedly well-deserved break.
New award to honor arts and activism named after Lena Horne
Gang members slam BMW into rival and his 8-year-old son in Harlem
Two gangbangers aimed their BMW like a missile at a father and his 8-year-old son on a Harlem sidewalk in a horrifying incident captured by video distributed by police Thursday.
The BMW — driven by a man police believe is a member of the Gorilla Stone Bloods Gang — was zeroed in on the father, a rival gang member, said cops.
Around 3:45 p.m. Nov. 6, the boy and his father were walking on W. 112th St. by Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. when the BMW jumped the sidewalk and slammed into them both, said cops.
🚨WANTED for ASSAULT: on 11/6 at approx 3:43 PM in front of 128 West 112th St in Manhattan, a 32 yr old male was walking with his 8 yr old son when a white BMW jumped the curb & hit the father & son. The driver then got out and slashed the father. Call @NYPDTips with any info. pic.twitter.com/cwd79rcM4c
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) November 15, 2019
Father and son were both knocked through a gate.
The BMW driver then backed up — and its driver and passenger, also believed to be a gang member, jumped out of the car and ran toward the father and the son.
One of the attackers slashed the father, identified by sources as 32-year-old Brian McIntosh, who’s served prison time for robbery and bail jumping.
McIntosh and his son went to Harlem Hospital. Miraculously, the boy escaped serious harm.
McIntosh was so adamant about refusing to help police catch his attackers that the young boy’s mother had to file a police report alleging he was the victim of a crime, police sources said.
Cops released video of the attack, and ask anyone with information about the suspects to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS.
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