June 10, 2020
Even wonder about the story of suds? Then join Judith Ridner, Professor of History at Mississippi State University, for a look at the the dirty history of soap (The Conversation), full of links to research on different products and periods. Soap History (dot net) also has extensive information, but without the citations. If it's citations you want, the lengthy Wikipedia article on soap may be what you want. Bonus link: history of hand-washing (The Conversation), from medical historian Leslie Leighton.
Mari Naomi is best known as a gifted queer Asian-American comics artist and illustrator, but she also raises monarch butterflies and has a lengthy twitter thread about this spanning the last year, filled with photos and videos of monarchs at various stages in their life cycle.
“The presence of the confederate flag at NASCAR events runs contrary to our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all fans, our competitors and our industry. Bringing people together around a love for racing and the community that it creates is what makes our fans and sport special. The display of the confederate flag will be prohibited from all NASCAR events and properties.” [more inside]
It started innocuously enough. A motorcyclist turned bikie discovered the old dirt road west of Fairfax, Marin County, in the early ‘70s. He and his buddies would ride or push their 1930s or ‘40s ballooners to the top of the ridge for the downhill thrill. The road plummeted 1300 feet in less than 2.1 miles. On the twisting, sometimes precipitous decent, the bikes’ antiquated hub coaster brakes would get so hot that the grease would vaporize. After a run or two, the hub had to be repacked with new grease (thus the term “Repack”)Joe Breeze recounts the beginning of people taking cheap bikes down forest roads on the Marin Peninsula, and what would become 'mountain biking,' for the Marin Museum of Bicycling.
Racing klunkers on Repack Road [more inside]
Should the funny pages look like the news? Josh Frulinger writes for Polygon about how newspaper comic strips are handling the pandemic. [more inside]
Theaster Gates first encountered creativity in the music of Black churches on his journey to becoming an urban planner, potter, and artist. Gates creates sculptures out of clay, tar, and renovated buildings, transforming the raw material of the South Side into radically reimagined vessels of opportunity for the community. (Art21 Video) [more inside]
The Roses and other denizens of Schitt’s Creek have a message and a song for the teachers and students of the Class of 2020...with a visit from a special guest. (And if you have never watched the show, Vanity Fair would like to tell you, Yes, Schitt’s Creek really is that good.)
Did Galileo Truly Say, ‘And Yet It Moves’? A Modern Detective Story: An astrophysicist traces genealogy and art history to discover the origin of the famous motto (Scientific American metered paywall): There is no doubt that he thought along those lines. His bitterness about the trial; the fact that he had been forced to abjure and recant his life’s work; the humiliating reality that his book Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems had been put on the Church’s Index of Prohibited Books; and his deep contempt for the inquisitors who judged him continually occupied his mind for all the years following the trial. We can also be certain that he did not (as legend has it) mutter that phrase in front of the inquisitors. Doing so would have been insanely risky. But did he say it at all? If not, when and how did the myth about this motto start circulating?
Shut Down STEM is a day of action planned for today (June 10th, 2020) to call attention to the ethical duty of global academic and STEM communities to eradicate anti-black racism. "Black academic and Black STEM professionals are hurting because they exist in and are attacked by institutional and systemic racism. Black people have been tirelessly working for change, alongside their Indigenous and People of Color allies. For Black academics and STEM professionals, #ShutDownAcademia and #ShutDownSTEM is a time to prioritize their needs— whether that is to rest, reflect, or to act— without incurring additional cumulative disadvantage. " [more inside]
First American Woman To Walk In Space Becomes First Woman To Dive To Deepest Spot On Earth — Kathy Sullivan, a former NASA Space Shuttle astronaut and the frst American woman to walk in space back in 1984, just added another record to her illustrious career by becoming the first woman to visit Challenger Deep — the bottom of the Mariana Trench — during a daring expedition last weekend. She's now also the only human to have ever been up in orbital space and down below at maximum ocean depth (SYFY Wire, Jeff Spry, 6/9/2020). More about the DSV (Deep Submergence Vehicle) Limiting Factor TRITON 36000/2 and its ongoing Ring of Fire Expedition to the Mariana Trench (WP) at Caladan Oceanic.
The Swedish Olof Palme assassination commission has decided to close the 1986 case and declared "Skandiamannen" Stig Engström the killer. Olof Palme, prime minister during the 70s and 80s, was the architect of many of the social reforms that contributed to Sweden and the rest of the Nordic region's reputation as progressive social democracies. He was assassinated on an open street after watching a movie with his wife and son on the last night of February, 1986. [more inside]
The hashtag #PublishingPaidMe has reignited a conversation about the disparities between how much Black authors and non-Black authors make. [more inside]
Give a man a snake.... [SLYT]