Nice try, Pottery Barn

I was doing some Christmas shopping this week, trawling the ol’ mall, and discovered, in the charming little family-owned boutique known as Pottery Barn, a series of reproduction antique globes, carefully crafted with strange woods, metals and lines to give the impression of being “authentically old-timey” and thus interesting, but also brought fully and boringly up-to-date to reflect modern global political boundaries. These globes are now totally and utterly 100% accurate in every way.

nice. try.

oh wait

p.s. if you don’t get it


  1. Marcus Rowland

    Globes of the moon with the same itilt as globes of the Earth are also fairly common.

  2. Marcus Rowland

    sorry, “tilt”, not “itilt”!

  3. Thustin

    It’s amusing that some planets are actually upside-down or sideways. It’s hard to imagine, too.

  4. BoB

    Dear Mr. Malki
    I was going to write a long diatribe about orbital vectors, relative orientation in space, the line of sight looking down at a table, and other equally irrelevant things. Then I realized that this would be a very obnoxious thing to do. So I didn’t.
    You’re welcome.


  5. smallbeds

    39 degrees is 90 degrees minus the approximate latitude of Greenwich in the UK.

    I wonder if some older globes were tilted to put the centre of timekeeping and hence navigation in antiquity conveniently and visibly at the top, when they were suitably turned. Might this in fact be an accurate reproduction of that very quirk?

    Google Images is inconclusive, so I must go to the Oxford Museum of the History of Science at some point. They have a steampunk exhibition on at the moment anyway, so it’s worth the journey.

    (Oh, there should be a vocative comma in “Nice try[comma] Pottery Barn”. But nobody’s perfect.)

  6. Supraluminal

    I like the insult implicit in linking to for the explanation. 😀

  7. artemiscuous

    i do not have a particularly in depth or sophisticated comment at this time…all i can say is LOLZ

  8. Fings

    I also don’t recall ever hearing about that large rectangular island south east of Brazil.

  9. Phil

    you, sir, are a class one nerd. i salute thee.

  10. Mumblix Grumph

    If it’s supposed to be an antique…shouldn’t it be square?

  11. Andrew

    Maybe they’re trying to sell them as “EXTREEEEEEEME GLOBEZ!!!!”

  12. Tom

    I saw this, laughed, and have since seen web-ads for these exact Pottery Barn globes on no fewer than three unrelated websites…

    I guess maybe they’re related insofar as they all have Pottery Barn ads, which maybe says more about myself than I cared to share in this forum. Hm.