I certainly can come up with the timely topics. I made a zoetrope many years ago in fine-arts summer school in a really bitching animation class and it was one of my favorite things ever. How I wish I still had my little zoetrope that spun on a pencil--so cool. You can buy kits to make these or just craft your own at this point, thanks to YouTube. Phonographantasmascopes are the best-named things of all time and look really cool too--like a 3D zoetrope that seems to be animating before your very eyes whilst trodding upon a turntable. Praxinoscopes use mirrors in a clever way and will wow you in an ol' fashioned manner, my friend.
You know that long ago, people sat around parlours admiring their hosts' praxinoscopes and exclaiming that it really looked like a tiny goat was jumping over an obstacle a hundred million times before their very eyes. No wonder people have always loved to entertain. To watch the little goats, of course.
Basic zoetrope demo. It fools the eye!
Pixar has made the ultimate zoetrope (of course). It's lovely.
Time on your hands? Make a high-tech zoetrope. Be the envy of everyone.
What's a phonographantasmascope? So glad you asked.
The praxinoscope makes good use of tiny mirrors.
And don't forget the other interestingly named, round, spinny animation device, the phenakistoscope.