October 12, 2015
"It was hard work maintaining a light buzz for so long, but it paid off. When Rihanna’s manager, Jay Brown, appeared to tell me that this was one of her first interviews in years I just laughed. And then choked. Because here she was." — Miranda July interviews Rihanna for the NYT Magazine's Greats Issue. (SLNYTM)
Here's fifty lanes of automobile traffic in Beijing. Here's a bike traffic jam at CicLAvia in Los Angeles, and on New York's 5th Avenue the traffic is afoot.
Sly Stone leaping and kicking the air in his ultra-70s platform heel boots. Thelonious Monk at the piano, a weapon slung across his shoulder and surrounded by the accoutrements of underground resistance. Bruce Springsteen grinning and leaning on his buddy, sax man Clarence Clemmons. If you're any kind of music fan, these iconic album cover images will probably be familiar to you. And they are only the tip of the iceberg: there were so, so many more designed for Columbia Records, over the years, by art director John Berg, who has just passed on at the age of 83. So long, John, and thanks for all those killer record covers.
Previous efforts to revamp Playboy, as recently as three years ago, have never quite stuck. And those who have accused it of exploiting women are unlikely to be assuaged by a modest cover-up. But, according to its own research, Playboy’s logo is one of the most recognizable in the world, along with those of Apple and Nike. This time, as the magazine seeks to compete with younger outlets like Vice, Mr. Flanders said, it sought to answer a key question: “if you take nudity out, what’s left?”Playboy to stop printing nude photos as of the March 2016 issue. (SLNYT) [more inside]
Patrick Haggerty was a teenager in rural Dry Creek, Washington, in the late 1950s. He remembers the day he first had a conversation with his father about being gay. [more inside]
For Reuters, Neil Hall and Angus Berwick tell the tale of Lincolnshire hermit Rachel Denton. In 2006 Denton formally committed to living the rest of her days in solitude after a lifetime as a teacher and Carmelite nun. In addition to keeping a garden and raising chickens, she makes time in her routine to update her Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn profiles.
"The room was upholstered in crimson and oatmeal and decorated with Socialist Realist frescoes of industrious maidens. A hefty multipointed star descended from the ceiling like a satellite returning from space. Above the tables a pair of identical life-size plaster statues of Soviet schoolgirls faced each other in the manner of temple guardians. They drummed on drums with a look of patriotic ecstasy; crimson blindfolds bound their eyes. Taking a swig of kvas, a fermented bread beverage that's slightly reminiscent of root beer, I wondered whether the statues were intended to be a political statement, nostalgic kitsch, or just a really ambitious exercise in color coordination." - The Surreal Thrill Of Moscow Dining by Alex Halberstadt
Here's a 5 min. Youtube clip with some tile makers and brick layers creating ceramic art with oriental motifs & Arabic music in the background
On this Columbus Day, consider what the world truly looked like before the arrival of the West. [more inside]
"FABRICATIONIST DEWIT REMAKES THE WORLD" is a work of interactive fiction that tells the story of a synthetic being who, after a sleep of centuries, receives an unexpected visitor—along with a new role in the Great Project.
So I lived my life flying around the world, telling people how to do things I had sometimes never done myself, while everyone suddenly seemed to believe I was a real programmer because of things I did that were mostly not related to programming in the first place. One day, I was stuck in an airport coming back from a conference, furiously typing at a terminal, when an odd, gentle voice asked me: If you please, design me a system!
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of Ladybird books, eight new titles are being produced. However these are targeted at adults, and may not be entirely serious in nature... [more inside]
A journey through the architecture and urban landscape of Chicago – from industrial zones to Mid-Century suburbs and all points between. [more inside]
Social network giant Facebook paid just £4,327 ($6,643) in corporation tax in 2014, its latest UK results show. Its most recent Companies House filing shows the company as making a pre-tax loss of £28.5m last year, but the firm also paid its 362 UK staff a total of £35.4m in share bonuses.
Rates of all types of addiction — not just alcohol — are elevated in aboriginal peoples around the world, not only in America. It’s unlikely that these scattered groups randomly happen to share more vulnerability genes for addiction than any other similarly dispersed people. But what they clearly do have in common is an ongoing multi-generational experience of trauma.No, Native Americans aren't genetically more susceptible to alcoholism.
"There are two kinds of women: those who knit and those who unravel. I am a great unraveler. I can undo years of careful stitching in fifteen gluttonous minutes. It isn't even a decision, really. Once I see the loose thread, I am undone. It's over before I have even asked myself the question: Do I actually want to destroy this?" [more inside]
Watching him direct is akin to witnessing an athletic performance. Soderbergh walks, jogs, runs, sits, lies on the floor, and hangs half off dollies while PAs grip his ankles. “When I tell other cameramen what goes on with Steven, they’re flabbergasted,” says Soderbergh’s longtime second cameraman, Patrick O’Brien, who works on only about 30 percent of The Knick — usually when Soderbergh needs him to gather extra close-ups in a scene with a lot of characters, operate a crane that he’s sitting on, or shoot the other side of a two-person conversation. [more inside]
The world's coral is suddenly and rapidly starting to die - "This is only the third time we've seen what we would refer to as a global bleaching event. [The prior events] were in 1998 and 2010, and those were pretty much one year events. We're looking at a similar spatial scale of bleaching across the globe, but spanning across at least 2 years. So that means a lot of these corals are being put under really prolonged stress, or are being hit 2 years in a row." Can 'manually breeding supercorals capable of living in increasingly inhospitable waters' help in time? (via/via)
But people who decide to study this violent history, people who write it all down — we’re also people who need to mail in tax forms, or put on a pot of coffee, call our dads. This can be difficult work, this act of entering the pre when you live in the post, and then having to be a person, and hand something in by a deadline, and walk away and study and do it again. For writers of colour who choose to study or tell the stories of their own communities, this in-between space is made more stark by the fact that they work within a system that often speaks about them, for them, but not with them.
A serial novel written in real time by Joshua Cohen, with illustrations by Leon Chang.
PCKWCK is a reinterpretation of Charles Dickens' first serial novel, The Pickwick Papers. That's about all we know so far, because it hasn't been written yet. Beginning Monday, October 12th at 1pm EST, Joshua Cohen will write PCKWCK over five days in front of the entire internet. Every day from 1pm-6pm EST visitors to www.PCKWCK.com will be able to watch Cohen write in real time, offer feedback that may affect the outcome of the novel, and talk with Cohen and other readers in a chat room.[more inside]
The Maine lobster haul has been growing and growing since the early 1990s, and no one is certain of why. Now there are fears of a pending bust, but without knowing the reason for the boom, no one can confidently predict whether the bust will happen either.
How the women of Umatilla, Oregon took over the city's government - in 1916.
In reality the Washington D.C. football team has a racist name, an asshole owner, and ruined one of the most promising rookie quarterbacks to ever play in the league. Jon Bois uses Breaking Madden to get fictional revenge by burning Washington to the ground. [more inside]
On this day one hundred years ago, the German army executed Edith Cavell. She was a British nurse who had worked in Belgium before the First World War, and then helped Belgian, French, and British men escape the country during the German occupation. A military court found her guilty of actively aiding the enemy in wartime, and ordered her execution. [more inside]
String (or yarn) and nail art can pretty straight-forward - use nails to set anchors for string and make something. You can make more complex patterns, like this string art clock by Aline Campbell, or multi-colored geometric patterns by Mahmoud Al-qammari. But it takes more skill and patience to make a giant portrait, as done by Zenyk Palagniuk, in the style of Kumi Yamashita.
The Amsterdam Klezmer Band performs their Klezmer rap song 'Chassid in Amsterdam'. Lyrics (in Dutch/Jiddish) in the description. [more inside]