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A smörgåsbord of stuff to do

SmörgåsbordPublished during the first COVID-19 lockdown, the content here has either been deleted or distributed to other parts of the website.

We've aimed for stuff where you don't have to log in, and done our best to avoid premium content or anything that has you reaching for your wallet.

The word smörgåsbord is Swedish for a buffet made up of many smaller dishes: 'a laid-out table'. This is how we've laid out this section, grouping things together but not massively organised.

We should add that we are not sponsored, have slept with, or are supported/ paid by any of the organisations listed here. Not all our suggestions are spectacularly sensible.

Virtual tours and streaming

A day for every day of the year

It appears there is a day for everything day. Check our lists and, quelle surprise, who would have thought 25th April is hug a plumber day?!*

  • List of LGBT awareness periods | Wikipedia
  • International Days | United Nations
    International days currently observed by the United Nations. The United Nations designates specific days, weeks, years and decades as occasions to mark particular events or topics in order to promote, through awareness and action, the objectives of the Organization.
  • Calendar of national health and wellbeing campaigns table for 2020 to 2021 | NHS Employers
    Selection of national and international campaigns to help to plan activities for the year ahead.
  • National Today | National Today
    Keeps track of fun holidays and special moments on the cultural calendar — giving you exciting activities, deals, local events, brand promotions, and other exciting ways to celebrate.
  • Days of the Year | Days of the Year
    Aims to gather all the special holidays, moments and occasions from around the world that bring people together, and help everyone celebrate them with special events, helpful tips and heaps of fun. For each day, it curates content with extensive and exciting holiday history, facts that will blow your mind, and amazing ways to truly celebrate the day to its fullest.
  • Awareness Days | Awareness Days
    A digital curation of UK, US and international Awareness Days, Weeks, Months and Events to create a central resource, making awareness days more easily accessible to a wider audience and with improved accuracy of information covering the leading Awareness Days and Events.

More stuff

  • Free eBooks @ Project Gutenberg
    A library of over 60,000 free eBooks. Choose among free epub and Kindle eBooks, download them or read them online. You will find the world's great literature here, with a focus on older works (with expired US copyright). Thousands of volunteers digitised and diligently proofread the eBooks, for enjoyment and education.
  • Big History Project
    Big History examines our past, explains our present, and imagines our future. It's a story about us. This growing, multi-disciplinary approach is focused on high school students, yet designed for anyone seeking answers to the big questions about the history of our Universe.
  • Learning about our UK Parliament
    Award-winning free education services for schools, colleges, communities and home educators.
  • Pulitzer Center
    The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting is an innovative award-winning non-profit journalism organisation dedicated to raising awareness of underreported global issues through direct support for quality journalism across all media platforms and a unique program of outreach and education to schools and universities.
  • Seterra
    Seterra is a map quiz site that you can use from any web browser to explore the world and learn about its countries, capitals, cities, rivers, lakes and more.
  • Project Noah
    Project Noah is designed to help people connect with the natural world and learn about wildlife. It enables amateurs and professionals alike to create and share multimedia nature journals.
  • The Internet Archive
    The Internet Archive is a non-profit, building a digital library of Internet sites and other cultural artefacts in digital form. Like a paper library, it provides free access to researchers, historians, scholars, the print disabled, and the general public. Its mission is to provide Universal Access to All Knowledge.
  • Latest Free Stuff
    Looks for new freebies, updating the website with the best freebies, samples and free stuff offers. Freebies and samples are given away by UK companies as a promotion or part of an advertising campaign. They are trying to attract customers to purchase their products in the future.
  • Board Game Arena
    Apparently, the largest online board game table in the world. No download necessary. You need to sign up. You can play directly from your web browser. We think it's free; if not, let us know.
  • The True Size
    It is hard to represent our spherical world on a flat piece of paper. Cartographers use something called a "projection" to morph the globe into 2D map. The most popular of these is the Mercator projection.

Letting out our inner geek

  • This section first appeared under our COVID-19 chapter in April 2020, together with other sections which we have now integrated into the rest of the website. When MEN R US volunteers are not fucking or getting fucked by men, we lead relatively ordinary lives often letting our geek out for a romp. Here is a selection of YouTube videos that have caught our eye because they're relaxing, creative, mind-blowing, or just a little bit awesome.
  • The Joy of Painting | The Joy of Painting with Bob Ross | 25 mins approx | The soft-spoken guy painting happy clouds, mountains, and trees in about 26 television minutes, using big house painting-type brushes and encouraging audiences with his gentle reminder, "you can do it." The Joy of Painting is an American half-hour instructional television show hosted by painter Bob Ross which ran from January 11, 1983, until May 17, 1994. In each episode, Ross taught techniques for landscape oil painting, completing a painting in each session.
  • Time-lapse: The Nightingale Hospital at the ExCel Centre | BBC News | 1 Apr 2020 | 40s | The Nightingale Hospital has been built in London's ExCeL Centre to deal with Coronavirus (COVID-19) patients.
    Building Realistic Dioramas with Luke Towan | 20-40 mins approx | Provides you with tutorials on building realistic scenery dioramas. Whether you’re a total beginner or a seasoned professional you will surely find some useful tips and advice here.
  • Drawing and painting 3 Dimensional Art Sonhos com Dimensão | . 3D trick art. Anamorphic Illusions. Optical illusions. 3D Drawing and Painting in timelapse. (how to draw tutorials) pencil, (desenho dibujar bien) How to draw. How to paint. Speed drawing. Speed painting.
  • Time-lapse: Milkyway compilation | Peaceful Cuisine | 23 Nov 2016 | 7m 47s | Filmed with Sony A7RII, Nikon Df and Sony RX100M4. Locations: Mt Fuji (Yamanashi, Japan); Manazuru seashore (Kanagawa, Japan); Kiyosato (Yamanashi, Japan); Lake Tekapo (New Zealand); Lake Alexandrina (New Zealand); Queenstown (New Zealand); Mauna Kea (Hawaii); Halemaumau (Hawaii); Kona Heaven (Hawaii)
  • Parkour, Freerunning and Trick Shots with Stunts Amazing | 2-10 ins approx | Mind-blowing extreme sports videos partnering with the best athletes all around the world to showcase the craziest stunts people have to offer. If you have an interest in parkour, freerunning, trick shots, Taekwondo or just like seeing epic athleticism then this is the place for you.
    Insane Parkour and Freerunning 2020 | Stunts Amazing | 5 Jan 2020 | 5m 57s
  • Starships size comparison | Meta Ball Studios | 21 Sep 2015 | 3m 37s | Starship size comparison from film and TV series from a Star Wars fighter at 6 metres to The Ark from Halo at 127,530 kilometres.
    Time-lapse: 42,000 piece jigsaw puzzle timelapse | Andre F | 15 Mar 2020 | 2m 33s | World's largest single image jigsaw puzzle timelapse (42,000 pieces). "Around The World" by Educa. Finished dimensions: 7.49m x 1.57m (24.6ft x 5.2ft). Started April 10 2019 - completed March 15 2020.
  • Thirty-sex best cosplayers at New York Comic Con 2019 | Insider | 10 Oct 2019 | 3m 51s | Insider went to New York Comic Con 2019 and found the best cosplayers from Iron Man to Spider-Man to Morpheus to Aang.
    Nature scenery on planet earth | Cat Trumpet | 3h 00m 3s | Enjoy 3 hours of amazing nature scenery featuring relaxing music ideal for sleep, study, meditation and yoga.
  • Woodturning: yellow birch pedestal box | David Adamsen | 22 Oct 2019 | 22m 23s | This piece of yellow birch was harvested within the past year or two, so it was not fully dry. However, it was very spalted and soft, which seemed to indicate it was close to becoming punky.
  • Time-lapse: Alien: Covenant movie set construction | Jacinta Leong | 14 Feb 2020 | 7m 7s | Build and installation time-lapse of sets: White Room, Covenant Hypersleep, Juggernaut, David's Lab, Covenant Terraforming Bay, Hall of Heads.
  • Earth from above (7 hours): Nature Relaxation Films | 28 Aug 2018 | 7h 0m 6s | Soar over many of the world's most breathtaking natural paradises for seven hours. Enjoy pristine views of exotic places such as Norway, Maui, Fiji, the Spanish Islands, Banff Alberta, California and Australia's southern coasts - paired with healing ambient music to aid in achieving a state of deep and tranquil relaxation. Changing locations 20-30 minutes.
  • Time-lapse: Making a Jumanji Board | Steven Richter | 27 Aug 2017 | 15m 13s | Building a screen accurate Jumanji board prop replica. | Making a Jumanji Board | Steven Richter | 26 Aug 2017 | 15m 13s
  • Daily Dose of Internet | Daily Dose of Internet Channel | Daily Dose of Internet collects some of the top trending videos from all over the Internet.
  • Five maps that will change how you see the world | The Conversation | Boston public schools recently announced that they will shift to using world maps based on the Peters projection, reportedly the first time a US public school district has done so. Why? | Five maps that will change how you see the world | The Conversation | 22 Mar 2017

Learning, courses and events

  • The Open University Open Learn |
    Anyone can learn for free on OpenLearn, but signing up will give you access to your personal learning profile and record of achievements that you earn while you study.
  • Future Learn Free and paid courses |
    FutureLearn is a digital education platform, its courses spanning a broad range of topics: learn a new skill, or pursue your hobbies with flexible online courses.
  • Free and paid | Everbrite LGBT+ Training and events
    US-based event management and ticketing website. Service allows users to browse, create, and promote local events. Charges a fee to event organisers in exchange for online ticketing services, unless the event is free.

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