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19984 MetaFilter comments by jonmc (displaying 1 through 50)

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.
comment posted at 1:00 PM on Jul-23-14
comment posted at 2:30 PM on Jul-23-14

Columbo - that much loved TV show - might be the latest candidate for a Hollywood remake - confirmed by its proposed star Mark Ruffalo on twitter. The Guardian argues that this is an inherently poor idea. Meanwhile Empire says "this is a project that every right-thinking human being would like to see happen".
comment posted at 11:58 AM on Jul-21-14

James Garner, star of two classic television shows ("Maverick" and "The Rockford Files") and a wide slate of films including "The Great Escape", "The Americanization of Emily" and "Victor/Victoria", has died at the age of 86.
comment posted at 4:04 AM on Jul-20-14
comment posted at 9:07 AM on Jul-20-14

"The residents of Denmark regularly report the highest levels of life satisfaction in the world. Economists Eugenio Proto and Andrew Oswald of the University of Warwick cautiously submit that there is a genetic component to this high level of contentment."
comment posted at 5:08 AM on Jul-20-14
comment posted at 9:11 AM on Jul-20-14
comment posted at 10:49 AM on Jul-20-14

31 Adorable Slang Terms for Sexual Intercourse from the Last 600 Years Lexicographer Jonathon Green’s comprehensive historical dictionary of slang, Green’s Dictionary of Slang, covers hundreds of years of jargon, cant, and naughty talk. He has created a series of online timelines (here and here) where the words too impolite, indecent, or risqué for the usual history books are arranged in the order they came into fashion. (If you don’t see any words on the timelines, zoom out using the bar on the right.) We’ve already had fun with the classiest terms for naughty bits. Here are the most adorable terms for sexual intercourse from the last 600 or so years.
comment posted at 7:27 PM on Jul-18-14

Figuring that honesty is the best policy, and that, at some point, it will become extremely difficult to conceal from the waitstaff the fact I have been sitting in the restaurant for 14 hours slowly eating mozzarella sticks, I decide beforehand that I will be up front with the TGI Friday's employees about the nature of my undertaking...
-My 14-Hour Search for the End of TGI Friday's Endless Appetizers
comment posted at 11:44 AM on Jul-18-14

He played with everyone from Muddy Waters to John Lee Hooker, and played a midnight set at Woodstock. American blues guitarist and singer Johnny Winter died Wednesday, he was 70.
comment posted at 11:52 AM on Jul-17-14

Award-winning Austin lingerie shop Petticoat Fair specializes in hard-to-fit bra sizes. Recently a trans woman was turned away from the shop and started social media protest and boycott campaign, swamping the store's Yelp page with negative reviews. The owner issued a controversial apology and plans to meet with the Transgender Education Network Of Texas to work out a better policy. The story started to percolate through national news and commentary and sites. Meanwhile, the original complainant has called off the official boycott and the store has promised to issue a new policy in the near future.
comment posted at 10:20 AM on Jul-17-14

Attack of the purse snatchers: gender and bag policies in U.S. comic book stores
What could a clerk at a comic book store possibly say to a new female customer to make her feel as alien and unwelcome as possible? Would it be some sort of overtly sexist slur, or an inappropriate comment about her appearance? Or could it perhaps be something as presumably innocuous as: "I’m going to need to take your bag before you go any further."

comment posted at 5:00 PM on Jul-16-14

JIBO: The World's First Family Robot
comment posted at 12:26 PM on Jul-16-14
comment posted at 12:27 PM on Jul-16-14

The eleven best metal songs about literature.
comment posted at 4:43 PM on Jul-15-14

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
comment posted at 10:26 AM on Jul-14-14
comment posted at 12:06 PM on Jul-14-14

The last remaining member of seminal 1970s New York punk act, Tommy Ramone, has died, aged 65.
comment posted at 4:57 AM on Jul-12-14

July 11th (7/11!) is the perfect day to read this Priceonomics piece on the invention of the Slurpee.
Did you miss Free Slurpee Day today? This year 7-Eleven's Free Slurpee Day has been supersized into a freebie week. (previously: 2005 & 2008)
(And bonus CanCon from the Wall Street Journal - This Isn't a Brain Freeze—Manitoba Wins 'Slurpee Capital' Once Again: Chilly Canadian Province Is Hottest Market for the Ice-Cold Beverage from 7-Eleven for 15th Year)
comment posted at 6:02 PM on Jul-11-14

Today is the National Gay Blood Drive, a campaign dedicated to bringing attention to the fact that the FDA still bans any men who have had sex with other men (MSM), at any time since 1977 from becoming blood donors.
comment posted at 8:37 AM on Jul-11-14

"I’m gay. I date men. Some of those men have vaginas."
A short comic about dating trans men by cartoonist Bill Roundy, previously featured for his Brooklyn bar review comics. (You may also like his gay romance comics, e.g. this unauthorised Northstar romance.)
comment posted at 4:59 AM on Jul-11-14

LEGO reveals their new female scientist figures. And here's a review.
comment posted at 12:40 PM on Jul-10-14
comment posted at 12:49 PM on Jul-10-14

Since 2010, Breanne Fahs, associate professor of women and gender studies in ASU's New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, has offered her students extra credit to personally challenge body hair norms, and document their experiences for the ten weeks during the class: men shave all their body hair from the neck down, while women don't shave. Comments from the public at large are mixed, as you might expect. But if you want to read something with more content, Fahs recently published a research article on imagined experiences of women compared to the documented experiences of her female students, titled Perilous Patches and Pitstaches: Imagined Versus Lived Experiences of Women’s Body Hair Growth (PDF)
comment posted at 8:03 AM on Jul-10-14

A 17 year-old Virginia teenager who is under investigation for sending a consensual sext to his 15-year-old girlfriend may be forced to have an erection in front of police as evidence in the case.
comment posted at 6:04 PM on Jul-9-14

Trekkie Feminist. Feminist fans of Star Trek take a look at what Star Trek gets wrong (and gets right) about gender issues, with individual episode reviews and series Bechdel test results.
comment posted at 8:15 AM on Jul-9-14

Monaghan and Ilitch barely know each other. The Domino’s founder says in an interview he can’t recall ever tasting a Little Caesars pizza, “though I must have a long time ago.” A sculpture hanging in the archives at Little Caesars’ headquarters makes fun of a Domino’s slice as having “hard, tasteless crust, topped with artificial, flat, and runny cheese.” It’s a fluke that the chains emerged from the same corner of Michigan at roughly the same time more than 50 years ago. Yet, in different ways, Domino’s and Little Caesars changed the way Americans eat pizza, helping to make it one of the country’s most popular foods. The pizza barons were great at selling pies. Now one wants to save Detroit, and the other wants to save everything else.

comment posted at 8:03 PM on Jul-8-14

Google Street View your way through a Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship.
comment posted at 5:59 PM on Jul-7-14

In March, Lawrenceville School Student Body President Maya Peterson, the first Black woman to be elected to that position, posted a photo to her Instagram account where she depicted what she described to be a “Lawrenceville boi”: white, Republican, and cockily holding a hockey stick. She used the hashtags “#romney2016,” “#confederate,” and “#peakedinhighschool." In response to the backlash from the photo, Maya, who is headed to Wesleyan in the fall, chose to step down.
comment posted at 9:26 AM on Jul-7-14
comment posted at 9:34 AM on Jul-7-14
comment posted at 12:25 PM on Jul-7-14

"I enjoy buffets. I wouldn't say love buffets, but it's a very reasonable way to eat out." (SLYT)
comment posted at 5:16 PM on Jul-7-14

Six months after legalizing cannabis , Colorado is cashing in money while Denver crime rates have suddenly fallen. Meanwhile, in the rest of the World...
comment posted at 10:11 AM on Jul-5-14

149 previously-unknown Bob Dylan acetate recordings were recently discovered in two boxes labelled "Old Records" in the back of a closet on W. Houston Street in New York City.
comment posted at 10:34 AM on Jul-2-14
comment posted at 4:38 PM on Jul-2-14

For some of us, summer is the season of dread, because, for all its many charms, it's also the season during which taking off one's clothes in public becomes customary, at times even compulsory. While I am spiritually and voyeuristically 100 percent on board with partial and total public nudity among those who choose to engage in it (a segment of the population I envy as deeply as some people envy millionaires), my own relationship to bodily exposure is a joint-freezing, breath-seizing nightmare. To couch it in terms of the ranking phobias in American life, I would rather address a large audience while sealed in a coffin aboard a free-falling airplane infested by poisonous spiders the size of Alaskan king crabs than take my shirt off at the beach.
comment posted at 10:00 AM on Jul-2-14

“We pride ourselves on our multiculturalism and inclusiveness, but what kind of message are we sending to visitors and new Canadians from that region (South Africa) when they see this racial slur being used for a trendy ingredient with no thought as to how hurtful it might be to a segment of our own population?”
The Vancouver Sun reports on the increasingly popular southeast Asian lime with the shockingly racist but obscure in Canada name.
comment posted at 6:10 AM on Jul-2-14

How Eddie Van Halen Got His Hands on an Ultra-Rare Flying V Prototype. In 1982, a guitar dealer hired by Eddie made a bogus deal for a legendary guitar and the original owner's son tells the tale.
comment posted at 4:49 PM on Jun-27-14

“Greyhound has become generic for bus travel,” says Robert Gabrick, author of Going The Greyhound Way. “Like Kleenex for tissues.”
comment posted at 12:14 PM on Jun-27-14

The Pitchforks Are Coming… For Us Plutocrats: "The thing about us businesspeople is that we love our customers rich and our employees poor. So for as long as there has been capitalism, capitalists have said the same thing about any effort to raise wages. We’ve had 75 years of complaints from big business—when the minimum wage was instituted, when women had to be paid equitable amounts, when child labor laws were created. Every time the capitalists said exactly the same thing in the same way: We’re all going to go bankrupt. I’ll have to close. I’ll have to lay everyone off. It hasn’t happened. In fact, the data show that when workers are better treated, business gets better. The naysayers are just wrong."
comment posted at 9:42 AM on Jun-27-14

"Maybe we smoked something; maybe we didn't. It didn't matter. It was just solid, absurdist, out-there humor." A Monty Python retrospective.
comment posted at 8:45 AM on Jun-26-14

This is not a think piece about how "problematic" the terrible fuckin puppets are in DirecTV's new series of ads currently running over and over during every commercial break of every TV show. It's A FACT PIECE. And the facts are in: Fuck these puppets. (Gawker)
comment posted at 12:24 PM on Jun-25-14
comment posted at 12:29 PM on Jun-25-14
comment posted at 1:51 PM on Jun-25-14

The greatest TV show never seen: "The Fantastic Four" (1963-64)
comment posted at 10:41 AM on Jun-25-14

Judge strikes down Indiana gay marriage ban
comment posted at 9:52 AM on Jun-25-14

Morrissey recently canceled the remainder of his USA tour after coming down with an illness he allegedly caught from his opening act, Kristeen Young, who denies she was the cause of the illness. This was not Morrissey's first instance of controversy on this tour, however. ----- "And before last night’s show at the Observatory in Orange County, he incurred the wrath of the Scottish band PAWS when his management attempted to get their set that night canceled. PAWS and We Are Scientists were scheduled to play a smaller room within the same venue, but Morrissey didn’t want any chance of sound-bleed during his set, and his management allegedly demanded that PAWS cancel their opening set and We Are Scientists only take the stage, for a shortened set, after the Morrissey show was already over. PAWS were actually going to be paid double for the canceled show, but the idea of canceling at Morrissey’s behest didn’t sit well with them, and they lashed out against Moz on Facebook, calling him a 'rich, has-been, ego maniac acting like a baby throwing toys from a pram.'" Morrissey denies the allegations.
comment posted at 7:22 AM on Jun-24-14
comment posted at 2:04 PM on Jun-24-14

Yo: Dumb app, security risk, passing fad, and/or "easily the worst piece of software I've ever used"?
comment posted at 7:16 PM on Jun-23-14

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