Most Favorited Posts in the Past 7 Days (24 hours, 30 days, 12 months, all time)
Here's a quick guide to what the numbers mean. Subscribe

If you're worried about identity theft...

This is an amazingly detailed and smart overview of what to do in the face of identity theft.
(pre,viou,sly posts on business and programming from kalzumeus)
posted by spbmp at 4:00 PM Sep 18 2017 - 12 comments [181 favorites]

And what did you do this week?

The Week My Husband Left And My House Was Burgled I Secured A Grant To Begin The Project That Became BRCA1
posted by jjray at 1:04 PM Sep 16 2017 - 51 comments [126 favorites]

You raised my hopes and dashed them quite expertly, sir. Bravo!

It’s Schrodinger’s President! Chuck and Nancy have a deal with Trump on DACA…or do they? Republicans are outraged at Trump’s unilateral caving…or are they? Trump likes to wait for the facts before commenting on a terrorist attack…or does he? Back channels are working on cooling down the North Korea nuclear crisis…or are they? The GOP attempt to repeal the ACA is dead…or is it?
posted by darkstar at 10:34 AM Sep 15 2017 - 1297 comments [117 favorites]

Hold My Mead Bro

Hold My Mead: A Bibliography For Historians Hitting Back At White Supremacy A collection of academic articles examining the questions of ethnic and cultural diversity across the ancient Roman and Medieval European worlds.
posted by supermedusa at 6:46 PM Sep 14 2017 - 22 comments [94 favorites]

"We see your dragons and have escaped in this bathyscaphe"

It started with a simple question on Twitter: "Who would win in a staff battle between @sciencemuseum (The Science Museum) and @NHM_London (Natural History Museum) what exhibits/items would help you be victorious? #askacurator"

The Natural History Museum was the first to weigh in: "We have dinosaurs. No contest."
The Science Museum was quick to respond: "@NHM_London is full of old fossils, but we have robots, a Spitfire and ancient poisons. Boom!"

What followed was a donnybrook for the ages. (Or for the Twitter-averse, a recap via the London Evening Standard.)
posted by Atom Eyes at 9:38 AM Sep 14 2017 - 26 comments [87 favorites]

Some waves are just not meant to be ridden

A slab, in surfer jargon, is a nearly unsurfable wave that occurs when a swell moves abruptly from deep water across a shallow reef or rock. The result is a fast-moving, immensely powerful tube that breaks below sea level, with a lip that's sometimes 10-foot-thick or more. When a swell is big enough, slabs produce waves that defy imagination, beautiful monsters capable of flinging surfers like toy dolls in a hurricane. [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 9:57 AM Sep 15 2017 - 31 comments [78 favorites]

The crafting phenomena of the Montgomery County Fair

The Vietnam veterans who became the crafting kings of the county fair "The first time Rod won a blue ribbon at the Montgomery County Fair, in 2010, it was Nathan who had secretly submitted Rod’s handmade blanket. After that, Rod submitted entries on his own every year. He had never mentioned anything about entering his final project at the fair. But seven months after he died, Nathan decided to do it anyway."
posted by halcyonday at 1:13 AM Sep 19 2017 - 34 comments [65 favorites]

Gymnastics on the dance floor

One of the original five elements of hip-hop culture, breaking (also known as breakdancing) never quite attained the ubiquity of rap, but it quietly remains an international phenomenon. If you're curious about the modern state of this art/sport hybrid, you could do worse than to start by watching the winning team showcase at last year's Battle of the Year, the biggest breaking crew tournament in the world. Or, for something a little less traditional, 2015's winner is a beautiful fusion of Spanish and hip-hop culture. Or perhaps you're one for the classics: Ichigeki's winning show from 2005 is often cited as the best showcase in the tournament's history. But if you restrict yourself to watching showcases, you'll be missing most of what makes breaking great. True breaking takes the form of improvisational dance-offs between opponents, each responding to, and one-upping, the other's moves. Last but not least, while breaking is an overwhelmingly male art form, there are also some seriously talented bgirls to keep an eye on. [more inside]
posted by perplexion at 8:54 PM Sep 16 2017 - 10 comments [64 favorites]

Idaho is creating a 3,600 square kilometer Dark Sky Reserve

After years of work, a group of dedicated enthusiasts will finally apply to have the first Dark Sky Reserve in the US. The International Dark-Sky Association has certified only 11 other reserves across the globe, and only one other in the Americas, at Mont-Mégantic national park in Québec. Each Reserve covers at least 700 square kilometers, and light pollution is so imperceptible that it is possible to see the interstellar dust clouds of the Milky Way. As one of the mayors involved said: "It's nice to look up and see something greater than ourselves."
posted by Cobalt at 9:20 PM Sep 16 2017 - 23 comments [63 favorites]

"Great travel writing makes no pretense of objectivity,"

The Secret History of Dune - Islamic theology, mysticism, and the history of the Arab world clearly influenced Dune, but part of Herbert’s genius lay in his willingness to reach for more idiosyncratic sources of inspiration. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:49 PM Sep 16 2017 - 7 comments [62 favorites]

Some 19th Century perspectives on (mostly) 19th Century literature

Reviews of Frankenstein, Wuthering Heights, Moby-Dick, Huckleberry Finn, and Dracula show the sometimes surprising reactions of 19th C. readers to 19th C. literature in English. In a letter from 1888, Nietzsche points toward the sometimes surprising coverage of another source, suggesting that The Main Developments in Literature during the Nineteenth Century by the Danish critic Georg Brandes "is still today the best Kulturbuch in German on this big subject": v. 1; v. 2; v. 3; v. 4; v. 5; v. 6. [more inside]
posted by Wobbuffet at 2:27 AM Sep 16 2017 - 24 comments [59 favorites]

Bodies Like Oceans (VERY NSFW)

Shoog McDaniel, is a southern, queer, non-binary, fat photographer and artist living in Gainesville, Florida. "My work is about highlighting bodies and lives that are often overlooked by popular society. I enjoy photographing fat bodies, trans bodies, and queer bodies. People`with gap-toothed smiles and missing buttons. I capture images of my friends. With little exceptions, I have a connection with the humans in my photos and I intend to show that through the intimacy of my portraits. I strive to connect the viewer of each photo to beauty within themselves, through understanding the brilliancy of diversity, by showing them that there are many ways to be beautiful." (ALL LINKS VERY NSFW) [more inside]
posted by Grandysaur at 8:48 PM Sep 18 2017 - 18 comments [57 favorites]

No magic bullet

My Father, the Werewolf
When I was a kid, my Dad taught me all about werewolves. Little did I know he was preparing me to understand his depression.
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:36 AM Sep 17 2017 - 17 comments [55 favorites]

Pox across the water

As the 1800s dawned, 22 orphans boarded a Spanish ship, under the care of their orphanage director and a team of doctors and nurses. As they set sail across the Atlantic, the plan was set in motion: they infected one of the children with cowpox. Over the following months, they passed the virus from one child to the other, in carefully spaced succession, to create a living transmission chain that would reach the Americas. They thus carried the smallpox vaccine to the new world in what became known as the Balmis Expedition.
posted by Cobalt at 9:15 PM Sep 18 2017 - 25 comments [55 favorites]

White Americuh

"September 1997: Kid Rock had just landed a major-label record deal. Little-known Eminem was about to catch Dr. Dre’s ear and land his own. The face-painted duo Insane Clown Posse was grabbing headlines and hitting the charts amid controversy. Within 15 months, all would be household names in the wider music world, a strange bit of synchronicity that sparked magazine essays, cultural analysis and no small amount of head-scratching: Detroit had not only managed to produce three white rap acts. It had produced three of the most prominent of all time."
20 years in, Kid Rock, Eminem and ICP are politically relevant — and culturally divided [more inside]
posted by mannequito at 4:07 PM Sep 18 2017 - 70 comments [53 favorites]

Make way for the skinny men with the determined faces

Two things emerged from the rubble of Mexico City after the devastating 1985 earthquake that killed 30,000 people: the first one is the national spirit of solidarity and compassion that compels every Mexican to drop everything and rush to help those in need. The second one is the Topos. [more inside]
posted by Cobalt at 9:29 AM Sep 20 2017 - 8 comments [53 favorites]

Who Owns the Wealth in Tax Havens?

The ultrawealthy have 10% of global GDP stashed in tax havensand it's making inequality worse than it appears
Annette Alstadsæter, Niels Johannesen, and Gabriel Zucman offer a new working paper about the composition of wealth held in offshore tax havens. Quick summary: "10% of world GDP is held in tax havens. The top 0.1% own 80% of that. The top 0.01% own 50%." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 3:11 AM Sep 14 2017 - 29 comments [49 favorites]

NARRATOR: it wasn't.

What if colonialism.... was good?[PDF] Bruce Gilley makes The Case For Colonialism. A nice timeline at The Daily Nous of some responses, as well as how the original piece failed peer review. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:50 PM Sep 18 2017 - 75 comments [43 favorites]

There is cake. And there is Victoria sponge cake.

While BBC staff are embroiled in an ugly cheesecake theft incident, a Dorset baker gets on with making a Victoria sponge cake weighing over 300 kg and using 700 eggs. Popular online, sometimes refered to as a Victoria sandwich (the difference explained), and sometimes difficult to bake, this consists of two sponges mortared with a layer of raspberry jam and a layer of whipped double cream, buttercream or vanilla cream. The WI offers a standard recipe though there are variations; some people are alleged to use electric mixers. The cake was named after Queen Victoria, who was known to like a nibble around tea time (4 o'clock in the afternoon). The advice for entering a Victoria sponge cake in a village show is often extremely debatable (and tips). [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 9:35 PM Sep 14 2017 - 27 comments [42 favorites]

Irving Harper, Paper Wizard. Also Visionary.

You remember the 1950s atomic era of midcentury design. Most people think of George Nelson when they see the Marshmallow Sofa or the Ball & Sunburst Clocks, and of course Herman Miller Company. Hardly anybody knows about Irving Harper, who actually created these designs in collaboration with Nelson sometimes, and sometimes solo but Nelson was head of the design firm (though not a designer himself) and so he got all the credit. A few years ago, however, Harper was rediscovered. And to the delight of all, he was also discovered as the creator of charming and delightful paper sculptures. A book came out in 2013, and a video by the Herman Miller Co. has given credit to Harper's iconic designs.
posted by MovableBookLady at 7:50 PM Sep 17 2017 - 3 comments [42 favorites]

« All Popular Favorites