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July 23

"The Soup" host Joel McHale takes a classic 1959 Ford Skyliner to new heights with "Veep" star Tony Hale. Comedians in Cars Getting Cocaine.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 6:16 PM - 10 comments

A Church Divided Over Marriage Equality
The Church’s rules against homosexuality have divided Methodists for forty years. Attempts to abolish or even soften these rules have failed at every General Conference, the quadrennial meeting of the denomination, since they were first added, in 1972, to the Book of Discipline, which contains the Church’s laws and doctrine.

"And They Will Know We Are Christians by Our Love"
"Methodists should call meeting on gay divide, pastor says"
"Ranks of defiant United Methodist clergy rise"
"Defrocking of Minister Widens Split Over Gays"
posted by davidstandaford at 4:56 PM - 10 comments

Why Silicon Valley Needs The Coder Grrrls Of Double Union, The Feminist Hacker Space
The lack of women in the tech world isn't just a pipeline problem--it's one of rampant sexism. Enter the haven of Double Union.
[more inside]
posted by Lexica at 4:44 PM - 32 comments

Rethink Homelessness asked a bunch of homeless people from Orlando to write down something about themselves that people who walk by them wouldn't otherwise know.
posted by gman at 3:41 PM - 22 comments

"Ancora Tu" is an Italian phrase roughly translating to "You Again". It's also the name of a classic 1976 pop song by Lucio Battisti and Mogol. [more inside]
posted by rollick at 2:39 PM - 1 comment

inside Sun Noodle, the secret weapon of america's best ramen shops29 ramen shops serving sun noodles across the US

but, have we taken ramen too far? [more inside]
posted by yeoz at 2:32 PM - 62 comments

Which sport are you physically most suited for? Find out with some help from the BBC!
posted by phunniemee at 1:56 PM - 108 comments

And the bartender's, like, "No kidding. You think I wished for a twelve-inch pianist?" So the guy processes this. (SLNewYorker) [more inside]
posted by Metroid Baby at 1:51 PM - 92 comments

"...it's social media that has helped build the public case against Russia" in Ukraine. One example is liveuamap.com, who "gather information from open sources and put it on the [Google] map" using familiar Google Maps markers for a Reds (Pro-Russian) vs Blues (Pro-Ukraine) theater map. Shaded regions indicate the Donetsk People's Republic (DNR; Red), Lugansk People's Republic (LNR; Purple), the MH17 crash site (Yellow), and the MH17 ceasefire zone (green). The posts linked to by each marker include a link to the source via a chain icon at the bottom of the post.
posted by jwells at 12:55 PM - 5 comments

Galaxy Quest: The Oral History
posted by Nimmie Amee at 12:54 PM - 85 comments

"I was a nervous wreck because I was about to betray my beloved grandmother and visit her darkest secret. Her secret had a name, and I was going to see him." (SLNYTimes: Modern Love)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:35 PM - 10 comments

It's hardly breaking news, but more and more people are questioning the race to the Ivy League that in some cases begins as early as preschool. And in addition to perpetuating the increasingly-rigid class structure in the US, the Ivy League colleges are inadvertently creating and admitting students who have no idea how to really take advantage of the resources available to them. So writes William Deresiewicz in his article, "Don't Send Your Kid to the Ivy League" from the New Republic:
So extreme are the admission standards now that kids who manage to get into elite colleges have, by definition, never experienced anything but success. The prospect of not being successful terrifies them, disorients them. The cost of falling short, even temporarily, becomes not merely practical, but existential. The result is a violent aversion to risk. You have no margin for error, so you avoid the possibility that you will ever make an error. Once, a student at Pomona told me that she’d love to have a chance to think about the things she’s studying, only she doesn’t have the time. I asked her if she had ever considered not trying to get an A in every class. She looked at me as if I had made an indecent suggestion.
See also Deresiewicz's earlier article, "The Disadvantages of an Elite Education" from American Scholar, previously discussed on the blue.
posted by math at 12:34 PM - 105 comments

All of The Baffler's back issues are available online, for free. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:30 AM - 22 comments

Look: it’s not that I’m a dick when it comes to this stuff. It’s that I like to think that I have standards based on exposure to the interdependent duo of lit and life. But if I decide not to wuss out and instead uphold my particular notion of standards, I’m a dick, and being a dick could lead to dickish reviews of my own stuff from Shane Jones, his friends, and friends of the publisher. George Saunders told us all to “err in the direction of kindness.” But is this essay/review I’m writing unkind? Is it selfish? Is it generous? Is a kindness policy maybe too simple?
Lee Klein worries about small-press book reviewing in an ambivalent, lukewarm take on Shane Jones's new novel Crystal Eaters (excerpt) that others have, all the same, called cowardly and dickish.
posted by RogerB at 9:49 AM - 31 comments

Throwing a theme party? Need some background music whilst checking out your ex's facebook pics? Do you pine for times gone by? Step into the Nostalgia Machine!
posted by stinkfoot at 8:35 AM - 103 comments

A robot with a broken leg learns to walk again.
posted by tocts at 8:28 AM - 15 comments

A "pulled-back subpoena was the most flagrant example of how the commission, established with great ceremony by Mr. Cuomo in July 2013, was hobbled almost from the outset by demands from the governor’s office." (SLNYT, ~6800 words)
posted by Chutzler at 7:57 AM - 32 comments

On its 15th Anniversary, Buzzfeed takes a look back at cult comedy Drop Dead Gorgeous while Bustle compares Drop Dead Gorgeous pageant moments with real life pageant moments.
posted by jacquilynne at 7:07 AM - 51 comments

The History of Autocorrect
...some of the calls were quite tricky, and one of the trickiest involved the issue of obscenity. On one hand, Word didn't want to seem priggish; on the other, it couldn't very well go around recommending the correct spelling of mothrefukcer. Microsoft was sensitive to these issues. The solution lay in expanding one of spell-check's most special lists, bearing the understated title: “Words which should neither be flagged nor suggested.”
posted by frimble at 6:40 AM - 71 comments

July 22

Impressionist and voice artist Lewis Macleod tells the story of Little Red Riding Hood with the help of some famous names. (NSFW, SLYT)
posted by Dragonness at 10:39 PM - 13 comments

NPR's Planet Money explains the history of the sales tax in the United States by tracing what kinds of sandwiches get taxed and why: How the Burrito Became a Sandwich. Bonus: In-N-Out Burger history in the podcast.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 10:19 PM - 152 comments

Columboldies is a tumblr featuring furniture/clothing/etc. from the tv show Columbo.
posted by Room 641-A at 8:34 PM - 31 comments

An animated interpretation of the strange life of Boston Corbett, the man who killed John Wilkes Booth. It was animated in charcoal, pastels and crayon on the pages of 12 paperback books. [more inside]
posted by bq at 8:17 PM - 5 comments

Doing his best Orson Welles impression, Ze Frank administers a Voight-Kampff Test to a Vancouver TED audience.
posted by kliuless at 8:08 PM - 26 comments

Sixteen-year-old Agnes Quill has inherited an ancient family curse, brought about by the loss of her parents. Several of our key scholars have accounted for and confirmed that she has the ability to see and communicate with spirits trapped between worlds. In several confidential journal entries, Agnes describes the events of her parents’ funeral, where the ghost of her Grandfather, Ages Quill, visited her. It was then that he explained the nature of specters and how he used his connections with them to great advantage throughout his career. Ms. Quill's stories are written by Astronaut Academy creator Dave Roman, and illustrated by a growing collection of artists. (via io9)
posted by filthy light thief at 7:27 PM - 3 comments

"Saying "Hey, I like Kim" isn't as inspiring to people as us getting married. And anyone that's in a relationship knows that in order to get to the point to get married and then to be married and to then carry on, it needs that work put into it. Right now, people look at it and it's like, "Wow, that's inspiring." Meaning that love is infectious. You know, God is infectious—God flowing through us and us being little-baby creators and shit. But His energy and His love and what He wants us to have as people and the way He wants us to love each other, that is infectious. Like they said in Step Brothers: Never lose your dinosaur. This is the ultimate example of a person never losing his dinosaur. Meaning that even as I grew in cultural awareness and respect and was put higher in the class system in some way for being this musician, I never lost my dinosaur." GQ interviews Kanye West. [more inside]
posted by porn in the woods at 7:08 PM - 34 comments

Una Baines' unreleased album with her band The Fates has been reissued by Finder's Keepers on vinyl. You may know Una Baines as the first keyboard player in the Fall, as a founding member of Blue Orchids or from a short lived stint in Nico's backing band. The Fates were a "women's group" operating at the intersection of post-punk, english mysticism, indie and folk. (Link goes to an interview at the defunct online Fall zine Reformation!) [more inside]
posted by kittensofthenight at 6:44 PM - 6 comments

Last month, a twelve-year-old girl named Lauren Arrington was credited with research showing that lionfish, an invasive species, were surviving in water with a much lower percentage of salinity than was thought possible. [more inside]
posted by PussKillian at 6:10 PM - 69 comments

Stories of Change: - Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia.
An inside perspective from local visual storytellers on everyday life in North Africa.
The Storytellers.
Timeline.
The Stories.
posted by adamvasco at 4:54 PM - 3 comments

Small South Carolina town rallies for fired lesbian police chief
LATTA, S.C. (AP) -- When openly gay police chief Crystal Moore was fired by a mayor who condemned her lifestyle as "questionable," she feared her two decade career in law enforcement in this town was over. Then, this conservative, small town rebelled.

The people of Latta, who voted overwhelmingly for a state amendment banning gay marriage eight years ago, turned against the mayor, stripped him of his powers and the town council rehired Moore. They said her dedication to the town mattered more than her sexual orientation.
posted by Lexica at 4:43 PM - 59 comments

An Oral History of the 1989 Cleveland Indians. It was 1989, and no one knew that the usually predictable world of Major League Baseball was about to get as topsy turvy as it could. Here's the story of a plucky band of misfits, fighting against the entrenched baseball establishment, to obtain success in their efforts against their playing opponents, and an evil owner bent on relocation. [more inside]
posted by LoRichTimes at 1:13 PM - 35 comments

Mallory Ortberg of The Toast continues the fine tradition of providing not-so-serious narration to very-serious art. This time, she tackles the Judgment of Paris, a theme "based on a legend where three supremely powerful goddesses asked a worthless male mortal to rank them in order of attractiveness in order to win a sculpture of a fruit." [more inside]
posted by Ouverture at 1:03 PM - 55 comments

Only 15 million, riiiight. A data experiment out of Florida State University maps the location of 1 million of the 15 million publicly available online images tagged with the word "cat." Using a supercomputer and the map coordinates imbedded in their metadata, I Know Where Your Cat Lives shows where each image was taken, to within an estimated 7.8 meters accuracy. [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky at 12:19 PM - 71 comments

They grew up in America, were deported or returned to Mexico for other reasons and faced challenges and opportunities alike. A recently funded kickstarter for a book called "Los Otros Dreamers" tells the struggles and hopes of the other DREAMers. Nancy Landa, a deported honors graduate of California State University, who has lived in Tijuana and London since her deportation in 2009, is about to begin a research project collecting the experiences of voluntary and involuntary returns to Mexico after a long time in the U.S. To help in a country that is foreign to them the Mexican nonprofit Dream in Mexico supports young people who just arrived in Mexico. The German Der Spiegel interviewed three young deportees and how returning to Mexico after a lifetime in the U.S was both, a culture shock and an opportunity for a better life. [in German]
posted by travelwithcats at 11:55 AM - 3 comments

Why the modern bathroom is a wasteful, unhealthy design (The Guardian):
"Piped water may be the greatest convenience ever known but our sewage systems and bathrooms are a disaster" [more inside]
posted by flex at 11:52 AM - 164 comments

What do you get when you subtract all the extraneous banter from an episode of "Family Feud"? About three minutes of actual game show. (SLYT).
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 11:39 AM - 69 comments

It's astonishing how many of the people conducting interviews and passing judgement on the careers of candidates have had no training at all on how to do it well. Aside from their own interviews, they may not have ever seen one. I'm all for learning on your own but at least when you write a program wrong it breaks. Without a natural feedback loop, interviewing mostly runs on myth and survivor bias. "Empirically", people who wear suits don't do well; therefore anyone in a suit is judged before they open their mouths. On my interview I remember we did thus & so, therefore I will always do thus & so. I'm awesome and I know X; therefore anyone who doesn't know X is an idiot. Exceptions, also known as opportunities for learning, are not allowed to occur. This completes the circle.
According to Carlos Bueno, Silicon Valley is not a meritocracy, it's a mirrortocracy where startups hire the people that resemble them the most. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 11:35 AM - 61 comments

Musical proof that Scully Likes Science.
posted by mudpuppie at 11:33 AM - 8 comments

Carl Zimmer writes for Quanta: The New Science Of Evolutionary Forecasting [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:14 AM - 3 comments

The Daily Harassment of Women in the Game Industry. "It’s telling that men in the gaming industry, or simply commentators, refuse to listen to the reality of these situations and try to help. They’d rather talk over women and convince themselves of a fictional reality that’s more comforting."
posted by Librarypt at 11:13 AM - 15 comments

Morph is a plasticine man, star of many short animated films made for the BBC from the 1970s onwards by Aardman Animations, who would later use the similar techniques for Wallace & Gromit. A Kickstarter campaign last year has paid for 12 new one minute episodes. [more inside]
posted by DanCall at 11:12 AM - 4 comments

Arizona’s Checkpoint Rebellion
Liberals, libertarians, retirees, and activists protest against immigration patrols far from the border.

Previously:
DHS Checkpoint Refusals
Am I being detained? Am I free to go?
posted by davidstandaford at 10:57 AM - 39 comments

There are many reasons people start sewing their own clothes: to break out of some of the cycle of fast fashion’s humanitarian and ecological issues (MF link), to be creative, to make quality clothes, to support local fabric shops and independent pattern designers, and to express their own style. A sometimes-overlooked benefit, though, is that of examining body acceptance. [more inside]
posted by umwhat at 10:43 AM - 29 comments

Meet Scarlett, North America's Top ranked Starcraft player. A complex, real-time strategy game with exquisitely balanced opposing forces, Starcraft is so popular that men can and do make a career out of playing the game. All but one of the top 20 ranked players in the world live and play in Korea. And all of them are men. So maybe it is not surprising that Scarlett, a 20 year-old transgender woman from Canada , is making huge waves in the gaming community.
posted by misha at 10:35 AM - 30 comments

Ellen Rumel plays in the band The Nunnery and takes 35mm photographs of the underground music scene in Boise, Idaho.

Alexander Miranda plays in the band Underpass and takes 35mm photographs of the DIY punk scene in Vancouver, British Columbia.
posted by Juliet Banana at 9:45 AM - 21 comments

Thirty Essential Songs from the Golden Age of Emo Including, of course, and with all sincerity, a late-era Jawbreaker song that opens with a clip of Christopher Walken's monologue from Annie Hall.
posted by MisantropicPainforest at 9:41 AM - 33 comments

Sarah McKinley and Violeta Duncan for Community Wealth: Worker Cooperatives Address Low-Wage Work and the Feminization of Poverty.
Women of color working low-wage jobs must often navigate unregulated work conditions, as much of their work is domestic labor—caregiving, house cleaning, child care—an industry that, historically, is not only low-paid but also exploitative. The National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA), a 10,000 membership-based organization for nannies, housecleaners, and caregivers, describes, in its 2012 Home Economics: The Invisible and Unregulated World of Domestic Work [PDF] report, the substandard conditions of domestic work, including lack of employment benefits, meager wages, exposure to toxic chemicals, and physical abuse.

Such unhealthy work environments and insufficient pay have led a number of these low-wage women to take matters in to their own hands. Many have formed women-owned worker cooperatives that ensure good pay and healthy working conditions, help women overcome the isolation and vulnerability of domestic work, and empower women to build wealth for themselves, their families, and their communities.
[more inside]
posted by divined by radio at 9:05 AM - 15 comments

Are you playing Kim Kardashian: Hollywood yet? Pretty much everyone is, including the EPA Office of Water. Your mission is simple: become an A-list celebrity through networking, flirting, modeling, promoting vodka, avoiding landlords and poking birds for money, and dating assholes in fedoras. Oh, and plenty of in-app purchases. Or you could just cheat.
posted by Metroid Baby at 9:00 AM - 66 comments

With growing fascination for the large land vertebratomorphs that are so startlingly diverse on Tatooine, I secured Imperial funding for an expedition to Tatooine, to survey the exotic megafauna and search for fossils of Tyrannodraconis that might further illuminate their evolution. My ensuing report summarizes my trilogy of investigations and discoveries from this “holiday in the suns." [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 8:48 AM - 5 comments

Iron, Steam and Coal. Photographer Matthew Malkiewicz captures the timeless beauty of the steam locomotive and steam trains - the steam, the tracks, the folks who run them and just the folks who love them. (Via Petapixel)
posted by caddis at 8:13 AM - 4 comments

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