August 29

Palestinian journalist, Said K. Aburish, died on August 29

Three years ago today saw the end of Palestinian writer Saïd Aburish. Parkinson's disease, he was 77. Aburish chose America for education and early life experience that included Princeton, the US Army and Madison Avenue. Aburish went to ground after writing this book. Of all the obituaries, Marian Houk's of The Independent is by far the most knowing, and his keenest publisher had kind things to say. The Guardian said Aburish "did much to illuminate the relationship between the Middle East and the west," and "Aburish’s writing was notably blunt" said the New York Times. At Twitter, and Google. R.I.P.
posted by Schroder at 1:31 AM - 0 comments

August 28

Hurricane Katrina's forgotten souls

On August 29, 2008 the remains of Katrina's unclaimed dead were put to rest. "Nobody has ever come searching for their loved one in the memorial, as far as I know." (warning: last link has some graphic imagery language)
posted by ladyriffraff at 9:28 PM - 8 comments

NSA Mass Phone Surveillance Possibly Constitutional After All

On December 13, 2013, the US district court for the District of Columbia ruled that the NSA's bulk collection of American citizens' telephone records was "likely" to violate the Fourth Amendment (previously on MeFi). Today, DC's federal court of appeals overturned that ruling. The rationale is that the plaintiffs did not prove "that they were affected by the metadata-gathering program," so they did not have standing to challenge it in court. [more inside]
posted by Rangi at 9:17 PM - 7 comments

#9 Inadvertent, Manitoba. #33 Wintergreen Slap. #39 Don Henley Tirade.

Superego's Mark McConville (previously: 1, 2, 3, 4) is making some very specific Top 50 lists:
    Top 50 Nastiest Black Diamond Ski Runs in the World
    Top 50 Retired Price Is Right Games
    Top 50 Canadian Ghost Towns
    Top 50 Vape Flavors in America for 2015
    [h/t]

posted by Room 641-A at 6:54 PM - 17 comments

Things That Make You Go HURRRGGGHH

Do recipes for moist cakes make your skin clammy? Did that article about hardscrabble pugilists leave you nauseated? Do you feel super-embarrassed (YT) when you have to say completely innocent words like onus or cunning or bean curd out loud? Or even in writing? If so, you are far from alone! Word aversion, or logomisia, is an extremely common phenomenon that affects up to one in five (links to PDF) of us, and it's extremely contagious. [more inside]
posted by jake at 6:22 PM - 123 comments

It Could Have Been A Utopia

Jaime Prater grew up in the Jesus People U.S.A. commune in Chicago. He set out to make a documentary about the religion, and in the process uncovered widespread sexual abuse of children in the group.
posted by chrchr at 5:33 PM - 14 comments

'buttery and mellow, with hints of lemon'

"Good fresh goat cheese is a special and important thing. It should be moist and creamy, without a hint of graininess. Its flavor should be clean and fresh, mouthwateringly tangy but not astringent, lemony but also milky and balanced. An unaged cheese has nowhere to hide its faults."
Beyond Chevre: 10 Essential Goat Milk Cheeses to Know and Love - by Liz Thorpe at Serious Eats [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 5:11 PM - 22 comments

An extravagant symbol of a man who can’t hide his true nature

A brief history on Spats, a mostly obsolete fashion accessory
posted by timshel at 4:00 PM - 16 comments

“producing much fruit, or foliage, or many offspring”

Can a Novelist Be Too Productive? by Stephen King [New York Times] [Op-Ed]
“No one in his or her right mind would argue that quantity guarantees quality, but to suggest that quantity never produces quality strikes me as snobbish, inane and demonstrably untrue.”
posted by Fizz at 3:19 PM - 61 comments

Be Happy for a Few Seconds

Watch a Baby Lose Its Mind Because It Loves a Cat Too Much (here is a direct link to the video if you'd prefer)
posted by davidjmcgee at 2:57 PM - 42 comments

Watch the skies

North Dakota becomes the first state to legalize weaponized drones. "Less than lethal” weapons like rubber bullets, pepper spray, tear gas, sound cannons, and Tasers are now permitted on drones, thanks to the actions of a lobbyist representing law enforcement.

Drones previously.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 2:51 PM - 61 comments

Ube Goldberg

New Uber Service Sounds Suspiciously Like a Bus — New Uber "Smart Routes" feature offers passengers fare discounts in exchange for pick-ups along predetermined high-ridership routes. Rather than trying to compete with public transit, FiveThirtyEight points out that Uber and public transit can complement each other. Meanwhile, the yellow cab industry is trying to fight back against Uber with an Uber-like smartphone app for NYC passengers.
posted by tonycpsu at 2:47 PM - 35 comments

You have to learn to love the bomb.

The Late, Great Stephen Colbert “The level of emotion you're getting from me right now—I'm not saying it's dishonest,” he said. “I'm just saying it's not normal. I'd really love to go to bed. I promise you, I do not spend my time on the edge of tears.”
posted by anazgnos at 2:37 PM - 20 comments

Because the Internet needs more

Rice University Fondren Library maintain a guide to cat videos on the web. But what do they think? Meanwhile, in the UK Labour Party leadership contest, socialists cannot vote, but cats can. And people like watching cat videos on TV. And as for Tinder for cats? There's an app for that. But, why so popular? And why does Larry Ellison like them? So do you want more? Why not go on a cat holiday, or run away and join the cat circus?
posted by Wordshore at 2:05 PM - 8 comments

line-square-dot

LSD - Line Square Dot... an addictive, minimalistic, JavaScript game. (source)
posted by swift at 2:00 PM - 18 comments

We will show you... The real world we found!

Every day the members of the Bureau of Proto Society debate the cause of the fall of the world from past documentary videos. New Anima(tor)'s Expo short from Yasuhiro Yoshiura (Time of Eve, Patema Inverted). Site will show up as Japanese at first, but there is a translation if you click "EN" in the upper right.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 11:39 AM - 2 comments

It's Flash Friday at Anatomy Arcade

The Revenge of Flash Friday - It's ALIVE! Anatomy Arcade "makes basic human anatomy come ALIVE through awesome free flash games, interactives and videos." There are two timed games: Whack-A-Bone and Poke-A-Muscle (both feature auto-playing music, but you can turn it off in PAM). For less stress, there are jigsaw puzzles to help you get familiar with the digestive system, skeletal system, muscular system, the brain, the eye and the heart. (Via everlasting blort)
posted by filthy light thief at 11:07 AM - 7 comments

Understanding Politics For Geeks

Vox argues that the reason the technical set gets frustrated with American politics is simple. They have a mental model of the political structure that is divorced from the actual reality of American politics. (SLVox) [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 11:01 AM - 66 comments

It Wasn't My Fault!

Former FEMA Head Michael Brown: Stop Blaming Me For Hurricane Katrina (SPL) In which he explains from his point of view what the real problems with the Katrina response were.
posted by mephron at 10:54 AM - 106 comments

Love, Hate, Security, and the Writer

"This was also the tour that I was jumped by a disgruntled fan in the ladies room. A rather tall woman, she may have not been over six feet tall, but only seemed that tall after she slammed me up against the wall, and forced me in a corner (people often seem taller when they’re threatening you). She was angry about the new book, angry about Anita having sex with someone that wasn’t Richard, and angry with me for adding new men to her life, and basically not happy with the way my series had turned in book ten, Narcissus in Chains." Laurell K. Hamilton on book tour woes.
posted by Shmuel510 at 10:18 AM - 22 comments

Dear Future Bedmate,

"How To Make Me Come" is a collection of anonymous essays penned by women about their orgasms. (Content NSFW: Text only.)
posted by zarq at 10:00 AM - 42 comments

Under such conditions, Stiob aesthetics made sense

American Stiob: Or, What Late-Socialist Aesthetics of Parody Reveal about Contemporary Political Culture in the West, Dominic Boyer and Alexei Yurchak, paper here in PDF [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:08 AM - 2 comments

Panic and Tumult in Northamptonshire

A cow in Northamptonshire has gotten its head stuck in a lawn chair. The County of Northamptonshire in England's East Midlands was first recorded in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle (1011), as Hamtunscire: the scire (shire) of Hamtun (the homestead). There are 129 things to do in Northamptonshire, the best of which is a llama farm. But all that changed today, when Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service were summoned to save a cow who had somehow gotten its head stuck in a lawn chair. [more inside]
posted by Naberius at 8:48 AM - 37 comments

M.E. called, says that's the third kid died snorting cool ranch doritos.

Absolutely true plotlines from the latest season of Law & Order SVU. [single link imgur album]
posted by phunniemee at 8:41 AM - 78 comments

Vulture talks to Quentin Tarantino

Frankly, sophisticated audiences are not a problem. Dumb audiences are a problem. But I think audiences are getting more sophisticated — that’s just a product of time. In the ’50s, audiences accepted a level of artifice that the audiences in 1966 would chuckle at. And the audiences of 1978 would chuckle at what the audience of 1966 said was okay, too. The trick is to try to be way ahead of that curve, so they’re not chuckling at your movies 20 years down the line.
posted by octothorpe at 8:39 AM - 28 comments

There are very few people to root for in this story

GQ's Taffy Brodesser-Akner looks at the culture and economics of sugar daddies.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:58 AM - 57 comments

Mr. Whiskerstein has been catatonic since yesterday afternoon

Cat Hospital, a cat soap opera.
posted by numaner at 7:02 AM - 14 comments

Come Fly With Me

The Federal Aviation Administration has approved the use of a paper airplane drone. Forbes has an interview with the UAV advocate who filed the petition to get an exemption for the paper airplane drone.
posted by Rob Rockets at 6:43 AM - 9 comments

You Be Illein'

Why do some people refer to themselves in the third person? asks Vanessa Barford, in a BBC News Magazine article. Misteraitch doesn’t know. The act of referring to oneself in this way is known as Illeism (Wikipedia) (apparently from the Latin ille meaning “he, that”). At Language Log, Arnold Zwicky writes on Illeism and its Relatives, and maintains that illeism in young children ought not be blamed on Elmo. [more inside]
posted by misteraitch at 6:04 AM - 36 comments

Ftaires! We have found ftaires!

For the last three days, a Search and Rescue Officer for the US Forest Service has been telling his stories to the NoSleep subreddit. They are by turns unsettling, sad and and just plain creepy ... and what's with the stairs? Read the comments, too. [more inside]
posted by daisyk at 5:54 AM - 87 comments

Real vs Reel

History vs Hollywood fact-checks "based on a true story/inspired by true events" popular movies, and tries to match faces and events with their real-life counterparts.
posted by elgilito at 5:39 AM - 4 comments

I'm Raven, your hostess with the mostess.

In 1997, HBO hired animation legend Ralph Bakshi to create an animated sci-fi show for adults. The result was "Spicy City," which only lasted for six episodes. All six of them are on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 5:09 AM - 9 comments

F is for farce, P is for police state, S is for slippery slope

A plan to conduct Operation Fortitude, a joint operation between the Victorian Police and the newly-created paramilitary Border Force as not been well received by the people of Melbourne who, to put it mildly, did not like the idea of being forced to show their papers in spot checks this Saturday. As Lenore Taylor says, Australian Border Force has united the nation against it. The Police say it was all a terrible misunderstanding over the wording of a press release typed by a "low level official". The original release has been removed. [more inside]
posted by Mezentian at 2:04 AM - 56 comments

"This only happened because people organized"

Following on from the New York Times' expose of nail salons, Sukjong Hong looks at the ongoing attemps to organise workers as well as the reactions of manucurists to the piece (also available in Korean). Sukjong Hong is a freelance writer and artist specialising in the intersection between journalism and comics.
posted by MartinWisse at 12:54 AM - 3 comments

Ten millimeter with over-and-under thirty millimeter pump action grenade

Build Your Own Aliens M41-A Pulse Rifle Prop for Under $30 (SLYT)
posted by Artw at 12:39 AM - 25 comments

August 27

John Scalzi Is Not A Very Popular Author And I Myself Am Quite Popular:

"How SJWs Always Lie About Our Comparative Popularity Levels Kindle Edition" In the wake of this year's kerpupple surrounding the Hugo awards, Alexandra Erin has created a Kindle book in response to Theodore Beale's (Vox Day) Amazon release of "SJWs Always Lie: Taking Down the Thought Police". [more inside]
posted by AGameOfMoans at 5:42 PM - 143 comments

"I just want this type of support to be normalized."

The Rise of the Abortion Doula
As Abortions Become Harder to Obtain, Pro-Choice Activists Eschew Policy Debates for Flesh and Blood Activism

The Job of an Abortion Doula
My Year As an Abortion Doula
True Story: I’m An Abortion Doula
On Being an Abortion Doula: The range of emotions involved in helping women terminate pregnancies
posted by andoatnp at 5:27 PM - 18 comments

Forever and Ever: Losing My Husband at 24

Did Andy have two weeks left or was his rapid decline of this morning merely a temporary problem that was easily fixed? Unsure, Andy turned to me and said, “Two weeks? I’m not ready for this ‘A Walk To Remember’ shit.” He had been fighting to live, but now it seemed he was merely fighting for a year.
Sarah McBride writes beautifully about losing her husband. She was 24. He was 28.
posted by kate blank at 3:50 PM - 32 comments

"What Is His Doctorate In? Being an **bleep**?"

The Black Tapes Podcast started when Alex Reagan of Pacific Northwest Stories profiled Dr. Richard Strand of the Strand Institute about his rigorous career debunking claims of the paranormal. During the interview, she discovered that he had files on cases that he had not yet debunked. [more inside]
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:35 PM - 21 comments

100 great films by female directors

100 great films by female directors. Part 1: 1912-1953, Part 2: 1962-1975, Part 3: 1975-1981, Part 4: 1982-1991, Part 5: 1991-1997, Part 6: 1998-2001, Part 7: 2002-2009, Part 8: 2007-2009, Part 9: 2010-2012, Part 10: 2012-2014. (This is not "The" 100 Great Movies By Female Directors. It's merely 100 movies we love and honestly think you will too.) [more inside]
posted by dng at 3:33 PM - 38 comments

“The wheel weaves as the wheel wills.”

The 51 Best Fantasy Series Ever Written [Buzzfeed]
Whether you’re a Swords and Sorcery type of fantasy reader, a fan of battles and betrayal, or you just want a few more goddamn elves in your life, there’s something for you here. These are the truly great fantasy series written in the last 50 years.
posted by Fizz at 2:53 PM - 146 comments

Dr. Dunkenstein. Sir Slam. Lovetron. Chocolate Thunder.

One of the most influential sports figures you've never heard of, Darryl Dawkins has passed at the age of 58. Dawkins was an NBA star in the flashy, no-defense, pre-Michael Jordan days, an early Nike-splashed icon, with multiple self-styled nicknames, although "Chocolate Thunder," was bestowed on him by Stevie Wonder. Think of the image of a basketball player shattering the backboard glass. You're thinking of Dawkins.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:08 PM - 26 comments

putting 'feminist' in your online dating bio is a good misogynist filter

Last year, Laura Nowak used Instagram to document the responses she got when she asked men on Tinder about their views on feminism. Nowak said she started the project because “I don’t want women thinking they have to settle for being objectified if they want casual sex, and I don’t want men on Tinder being systematically categorised as creeps.” In February 2015, Instagram deleted her @feministsontinder account, stating that it violated their guidelines. Now Nowak is back on Instagram with @feminist_tinder, recording the responses she received when she put the phrase "hello I am a feminist" in her Tinder profile. [more inside]
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:33 PM - 167 comments

The Other Paper

Meet The Indie Newspaper Man Who Documented The East Village In The 1980s [more inside]
posted by poffin boffin at 12:17 PM - 5 comments

Mapping the beautiful chaos of informal transit

As transit systems go, the matatus in Nairobi exist somewhere between underground gypsy cabs and MTA bus service. The minibuses themselves aren't owned by any government agency. The fares aren't regulated by the city. The routes are vaguely based on a bus network that existed in Nairobi some 30 years ago, but they've since shifted and multiplied and expanded at the region's edges... Riders who navigate the matatu system rely on it in parts, using only the lines they know and the unofficial stops they're sure actually exist. As for the network as a whole – there's never even been a map of it... In the absence of a formal public transit system in Kenya's capital, people have created a comprehensive – if imperfect – one on their own. And now we know that it looks like this. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 11:01 AM - 21 comments

Upgraded Medium Chain Snake Oil

The founder of Fitocracy explains how consumers fall for dubious fitness fads, with special emphasis on the work of Dave Asprey, "The Bulletproof CEO" (previously and previously).
posted by chrchr at 10:28 AM - 80 comments

Mormon breast implants and Jewish Dowries

Dateonomics: What two religions tell us about the modern dating crisis.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:02 AM - 99 comments

Orsini's Sacro Busco, or the Park of Monsters

Count Pier Francesco Orsini (Google auto-translate) was a man much given to melancholy. The premature death of his wife, Giulia Farnese, and other troubles contributing to the decay of the once proud Orsini dynasty, darkened his outlook on life. Like the world-hating Jacques in Shakespeare's As You Like It, he seems to have come to regard the world around him with a somewhat self-advertising disgust. Orsini retreated noisily from the world of human affairs into nature, albeit a nature much improved by art (Google books preview). Those improvements came in the form of larger-than-life sculptures, some sculpted in the bedrock, which populated Sacro Bosco ("Sacred Grove"), colloquially called Parco dei Mostri ("Park of the Monsters"). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:04 AM - 6 comments

No, I Am Not Crowdfunding This Baby

How I’m slightly terrified of the oncoming mix of motherhood and art….and how judging and terrifying me further isn’t going to help me. (slMedium, NSFW) [more inside]
posted by Kitteh at 8:11 AM - 105 comments

When did we all become 'curators'?

"how did curating, a highly specialized line of museum work involving the care, accessioning, and exhibition of artworks, come to mean, as cultural policy scholar Amanda Coles puts it, “just picking stuff?”" - Miya Tokumitsu [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:47 AM - 99 comments

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