Vegan No More: For 3 years I built my entire life on the premise of veganism. It was my life’s passion, my guiding light. Being a vegan was everything to me. I believed my actions made me an animal rights crusader; I was saving lives, and changing the world. Now, I know otherwise. And now, after 2 full months of non-veganism, I can honestly say that I feel reborn. posted by contessa at 7:27 PM PST - 328 comments
My Immortal is an infamous piece of fanfiction by Tara Gilesbie that has the distinction of being the top Google result for "worst fanfic ever". It's a fascinating read, both for its unique turns-of-word (like when Draco and the author begin to "make out keenly"), and for how effectively it reveals the author's culture and insecurities — the way it alternates between denunciations of superficial "prep" culture and elaborate descriptions of its protagonist's wardrobe, its constant obsession with sex mixed with a squeamish aversion of any eroticism, and its desire, chapter by chapter, to both denounce its critics and to prove them somehow wrong. TVtropes, Urban Dictionary, and Encyclopedia Dramatica each debate whether the piece is sincere or satirical. "If it's fake," says UD, "it's complete genius; and if it's real it's total desecration of a perfectly good book/movie series." posted by Rory Marinich at 2:17 PM PST - 85 comments
"Affluence breeds impatience, and impatience undermines well-being." Avner Offer is the professor of economic history at the University of Oxford, and he is interested in the well-being of people and families in liberal market societies. His latest work, The Challenge of Affluence: Self-Control and Well-Being in the United States and Britain since 1950, is an empirical socioeconomic history of the effects that liberal and neo-liberal economics has had on happiness, relationships, and social welfare. Specifically, he argues that Reaganism/Thatcherism catapulted forward the ability to produce new goods and services, and to create the desire for them, far ahead of society's ability to cope. Reagan and Thatcher "smashed the family to pieces;" the result of market liberalism is societies of ever-more dissatisfied, atomized, unhappy communities of dual-worker consumerist families. posted by r_nebblesworthII at 12:11 PM PST - 51 comments
Dirtbombs' drummer Ben Blackwell has created a map of Detroit of labels offering "vinyl releases throughout all eras". He also has a blog and participated in the SXSW panel "How to Make Money With Vinyl" (mp3) as an employee of Third Man Records. posted by dobbs at 11:53 AM PST - 7 comments
After a woman living in a hotel in Florida was raped, viciously beaten, and left for dead near the Everglades in 2005, the police investigation quickly went cold. But when the victim sued the Airport Regency, the hotel’s private detective, Ken Brennan, became obsessed with the case: how had the 21-year-old blonde disappeared from her room, unseen by security cameras? The author follows Brennan’s trail as the P.I. worked a chilling hunch that would lead him to other states, other crimes, and a man nobody else suspected.
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"On the other hand, a seal made of shellac shall also n'er serve, for that it is too intemperate and hard and will too easily break upon the lightest blow. And belike as not, it will not adhere to a paper when attached thereto, so that oftimes it would pop loose without any encouragement, and bear false witness against the messager." —The Manufacture of a Good and Faithful Sealing Wax, circa 1683. [more inside] posted by usonian at 8:43 AM PST - 31 comments
Where will you be one week from today? "In this age of restless wanderings, how can you be certain where some urgent
call may take you? What guarantee have you that a feeble cry in the night, a
sudden emergency call, or a "date" will not summon you hurriedly to 431
Eighth Avenue?" [more inside] posted by pollex at 8:02 AM PST - 11 comments
You think it would be really fun to have sex with me. Because, I think you can tell from my posts, I’ll do anything. But maybe you can also tell from my posts that it’s a little bit weird. Because you know that I’ll say anything, too, but sometimes, I make you cringe.
The Soviet Collapse "The document which effectively concluded the history of the Soviet Union was a letter from the Vneshekonombank in November 1991 to the Soviet leadership, informing them that the Soviet state had not a cent in its coffers." posted by bitmage at 6:28 AM PST - 28 comments
"Every day there are untold millions of comments, texts, and online interactions. Millions. And each one says, I am here and I extend my consciousness to there. There might have been a time when humans were content to sit and simply be, like the goat I saw yesterday sitting contently in a patch of sunshine at the Lincoln Park Zoo. That time was long ago. We want the news. We want to chatter and gossip. We want to say "I am alive" in a billion billion different ways. And now here is internet, providing such an easy, easy way to do that." posted by nomadicink at 4:48 AM PST - 35 comments