Welcome to Braggsville
Book-It Theatre adapts T. Geronimo Johnson’s critically-acclaimed and unapologetically scathing novel, Welcome to Braggsville, for the stage and by many accounts, it’s a Can’t-Miss show. Braggsville tells the story about a multi-ethnic group of Berkeley undergrads who decide they’re going to teach some small-town Georgians a thing or two about race by staging a lynching. Things Do Not Go Well. I’m most excited about seeing the cast and hearing Johnson’s words; his writing is explosive, current, free-flowing. The show closes Sunday but note: two shows are available on Saturday. GO!
If you go: Welcome to Braggsville, The Center Theatre at Seattle Center, through July 2 (Tickets start at $15)—F.D.
Seattle Mayor Bingo
Who says talking local politics has to be boring?! We’re taking the Seattle mayoral race seriously by inviting the public to imbibe and discuss the contenders through a game of Bingo and trivia. Hang with Crosscut’s very own Knute Berger and David Kroman. Play, drink, vie for some cool prizes and you’ll even learn some things. See you there!
If you go: Seattle Mayor Bingo, 7 p.m. June 30, Peddler Brewing Company (Free)—F.D.
The Last Hurrah
Town Hall, my favorite venue for lectures and events, will be closing for renovations for the next year. To ease the heartache, the fantastic programmers at Town Hall will be offering a panoply of events all day Friday, starting with behind-the-scenes building tours in the morning, and concluding at midnight with a reading of the Great Hall poem and a send-off toast. The Last Hurrah party kicks off at 7 p.m. with a mix of the things that make Town Hall so special: live music by local band The Nines, a performance by renowned slam poet Buddy Wakefield, short talks by Ignite Seattle public speaking, a hip-hop tap performance, and oodles of dancing. In a year when it reopens, it’ll be more beautiful and appreciated than ever, and rumor has it, utterly indestructible.
Milepost 31 Tours
Since 2011, WSDOT’s Milepost 31 in Pioneer Square has been educating and entertaining people with the unique history of the Alaskan Way viaduct. If that sounds dry, think again; this highly-utilized and controversial thoroughfare touches so many issues, from public transportation to Pioneer Square past, present, and future. Head to the museum (soon closing when the viaduct closes) or better yet, take part in one of their exclusive tours of the viaduct. Get up close to construction, hear about plans for the future, and learn all about the elusive drill Bertha. Bike above Bertha tours also take place a few times a month –plan ahead!
If you go: Milepost 31 Tours, Tuesdays through Saturdays (free)—N.C.
8th Generation, the groundbreaking retail store in the Pike Place Market that is Native-owned and sells items designed by Native artists, hosts its first artist-in-residence: Joe Seymour (Squaxin Island/Acoma). The Coast Salish artist will be at the store this weekend weaving art and performance.
If you go: Joe Seymour, 8th Generation store, July 1-2 (Free)—F.D.
Tumblr/Goodreads/IG/etc: I don't know what a Tumblr or an IG are. I'm DrSamAnderson, samanthanderson.
Describe yourself in five sentences or less: I'm a scientist and a teacher but nothing like you imagine when you hear those two words. I'm the sort of walking contradiction who wears flouncy dresses with leather jackets and biker boots. Think of me as another cute blonde woman at your peril - my passions in life are physics, engineering and mechanics closely followed by tasty baked goods, especially cupcakes. My brother says my motto in life is "she's beauty, she's grace, she'll punch you in the face" and he experienced many of those punches when we were in the single digits!
Top 5 Fandoms: Doctor Who
Anything with George Clooney in it
(I also love to watch bad sci-fi to mock it!)
I mostly post about: I've not really posted much but I'm expecting I'll post about science, books, dresses, rugby, shoes, science fiction and cupcakes. I will definitely talk about my family - mostly my husband and girlfriend. I suspect there will be much grumpiness about broken legs and plaster casts.
Since we're at the last post for the month, it's time for list revision. You are free to look over your list and remove anything that you've realized isn't working for you. There is nothing wrong with keeping all your bunnies, of course, but it is also okay to let go.
This is also a weekly check-in! You do not have to check in, of course, but if you would like to comment on the last week, feel free!
If you have a deadline coming up, you can do it! If you need a deadline, feel free to ask!
Our hero and heroine are Nabi and Fereshtre, who fell in love back in Afghanistan, but because her family was against it could not be together. Her father then moved the family to Teheran. The couple remained in contact and made plans which were accelarated when Nabi's brother killed someone, which started a blood feud, which meant Nabi had to get the hell out of Afghanistan sooner rather than later and thus is in Teheran sooner than expected. That's when the movie starts, with Nabi arriving in an overfilled vehicle in Teheran, where Fereshtre wants to join him. She hasn't told her family, but they are planning to go to Europe on the dangerous Turkey-Greece route. Nabi's sister knows, is horrified (news of drowned people being everywhere), and tries to reach them via phone at different points in the film, which takes place during a single day.
As with other Iranian movies I've seen (all at the Munich Film Festival, as it happens), this one sticks to certain censorship rules - no kisses, despite Nabi and Fereshtre being an established couple (he introduces her as his wife to the various people they encounter, but technically she isn't, due to her father's objection), or other physical contact that could be deemed erotic, for example. But the movie doesn't need it, as the longing looks between them and gestures like Nabi covering Fereshtre with his jacket carry all the tender familiarity that is needed to indicate the state between them. That said, later during the Q & A you could see somewhat of a culture clash happening when a German viewer (male) said Fereshtre was such a passive character and didn't decide for herself, and an Afghan viewer (female) protested that Fereshtre by deciding to be with Nabi was already doing something very transgressive because leaving the family is such a strict no. The Afghans in the audience generally voiced much approval; one man said he'd taken the same route to Europe Nabi and Fereshtre want to take in the movie, and the behavior of the smugglers was very much as it had been for him.
This is very much an working immigrant movie - Fereshtre's family seems to be doing okay, but she's still working at a tailor's who doesn't pay his employees their promised salaries, very aware that most of them aren't there legally; Nabi's one friend who is already in Teheran as well as some other contacts work in construction, and are considerably poorer. And most of them either arrived as refugees themselves or have family who is trying to make it further, to Europe. At one point, one of them finds out his brother was on the latest ship that went down and whose passengers drowned, and despite the audience not having spent much time with this character, it's heartrendering. Of Teheran, we see only what the characters see - mostly construction sites, or fragments of a city through the air holes in car boots. The colour palate of the movie is thus mostly brown and sandlike yellow, with the occasional red via the women's headscarves, and some blue and grey inside half finished buildings where there are improvised meals and hot tea sharing. ( Spoilery observation for the ending. )
Gook, directed by Justin Chon, who also wrote the script and stars as one of the main three characters. The title, as Chon informed his German audience which didn't know that in a short speech before the movie started, is an US-Englsh racial slur against East Asians, while the same word in Korean simply means "country". This movie takes place during the Rodney King riots twenty five years ago, and Chon in the same brief introduction speech mentioned his family's store was looted on that occasion as well, when he'd been 11, so he does have personal memories, but that wasn't the sole reason for making the movie - as important was that their store getting looted was pretty much typical because Korean immigrant shops were a primary target during the riots. Chon first wrote the script and imagined someone else would direct it, but the people in question all wanted at least one white character in the story to give a famous actor the chance of an audience-drawing cameo, preferablyly someone who says "you gotta go, there are looters coming". Whereas, quoth Cho, the cops had left to their fates d during the riots, and besides, another reason why he wanted to make the movie was because Asian Americans stiill don't get many roles in the US media, "and if they show up, they're usually good at match and all go to Harvard, and well - not true for anyone I grew up with!"
The result is a movie featuring solely Korean-American and African-American characters, mainly from two families - the brothers Eli (played by Chon himself) and Daniel (David So), who sell shoes in South Central Los Angeles, eleven-years-old Kamilla (Simone Baker, who is amazing in the part) who loves to hang out there, and, in minor but important supporting roles, her older brother Keith and older sister Regina. Also important: the cranky old Korean shop owner on the other side of the road who exists in a state of mutual loathing re: Eli and Kamilla.
(Kamilla, btw, started out as a boy named Kamal when Justin Chon wrote the first draft, but then, he said in the Q & A after the movie, he realised that black girls were as underrepresented as Asian males, and changed the kid's gender.)
Daniel and Eli have inherited the shoe store from their father (there's a backstory there which is only revealed in the last third of the movie, but it's just one factor in a complex pattern) and are just barely getting by, with some fraternal tension because Daniel would rather do something else; Kamilla and her older siblings are orphans (see also: slowly revealed backstory) and she's not really supposed to be at the store, but has made the brothers into her other family. All of which is put to the test when after the judgment in the Rodney King trial Los Angeles explodes.
Chon spreads the trial news through the early part of the movie, keeps it in the background, and mostly lets the fragments speak for themselves except for one heavy irony scene when one of Keith's pals says that now there are cameras everywhere, cops won't get away with beatiing up people anymore; but when the judgment itself is announced, we see all of the movie's characters react, and it's the big turning point from which the pace accelerates as the situation becomes more and more dangerous. Even before that, though, the racial tensions are ever present, both in blunt form ("Gook" getting sprayed on Eli's car) and more subtly (Kamilla, who helps out Eli and Daniel at the store, makes a joke about being held against her will, and all at once the three (black, female) customers who a moment ago had been chatting with the guys fall silent and narrow their eyes in suspicion, until it becomes clear Kamilla was kidding.
Kamillla is a great character, endearing without being saintly, and sometimes in the wrong (she steals from the cranky Korean shop owner across the street), fierce and joyful, with a temper of her own. Asked how he cast the young actress, Chon said at first he looked at young professoinal Disney actors, but they were already too polished and he wanted someone more raw, and then he found Simone at a community art center. I hope she'll keep acting; she does some amazing stuff in this movie, and is really the heart of it. The film is an ode to friendship across those invisible dividing lines, but be warned: your heart will also be broken.
The movie is shot in black and white, both, as Chon frankly confessed, for budget reasons and to make any anachronisms about South Central Los Angeles that's supposed to look like 25 years ago less obvious. At first it feels a bit odd, especially since I remember Los Angeles at that time, but now I can't imagine the movie in colour. Not least because the black and white really allows for a stark picture of just how poor the neighborhood is. Music wise, it uses both original music and one or two hits of the day. It makes for an intense, captivating whole.
A song that you never get tired of. I am kind of over-thinking this one, because there are a few songs I have definitely liked for 20 years or so. Once I've been listening to a song for ages, rather than getting tired of it, I'm more likely to feel warm towards it because it's so much part of my life. At the same time, there are a few songs I've got into more recently, which I expect to always love, but I can't be sure that I won't ever get tired of them.
So I think the best candidates are:
( video embed )
Today we present a wonderful Wonder Woman post from Diana super-fan chaila.
I will state my biases up front and acknowledge that as a veteran of being a fan of Wonder Woman on the internet, I was pretty determined to like Wonder Woman from the moment it was announced. I am thrilled and relieved that it has not only exceeded my expectations, but also has apparently escaped the crushing weight of being the first female-led superhero movie and become a critical and commercial success. Diana has a movie!
Many reviews have already covered a lot of what I loved about the movie: Gal Gadot’s performance, the refreshing neutrality of the gaze, the Amazons, the fight scenes, the Amazons in the fight scenes, General Antiope, and the simple narrative power of centering a woman in a story like this. Other reviews have pointed out its obvious failings, particularly the lack of significant roles--or even names--for any women of color, and the treatment of disability.
What I want to talk about is Diana.
( What one does when faced with the truth is more difficult than you’d think. )
My response to a comment on "No Pressure Writing" at Booman Tribune.
"Well Bannon is sure that winter is coming, so there may be less difference between game of thrones and the White House than we all thought."
I'm actually a fan of "The Fourth Turning," so it distresses me that Bannon is both misusing the ideas in the book and ignoring the parts of the authors' theory of cyclical history that he finds inconvenient for his purposes, like the importance of the Millennials in determining how the crisis will turn out. This Business Insider article does a good job of outlining both, while the following video from The Huffington Post concentrates more on the ends that Bannon wants more than the means of the book.
Trump’s top adviser thinks we’re in “the great Fourth Turning in American history."
I'm going to have to write a diary about this topic later. Right now, I'll satisfy myself with a first draft of adapting Kung Fu Monkey's joke about "Atlas Shrugged" and "Lord of the Rings."
There are two books that warn that "Winter is coming," "A Game of Thrones" and "The Fourth Turning." One will turn its readers into people who look forward to a crisis that will redeem the country after a decade or more of war, depression, and civil strife. The other one has White Walkers as villains.
(Add this source for any entry: Bannon’s Worldview: Dissecting the Message of ‘The Fourth Turning’. Also put the wish for Trump to "Fire Bannon" in context by including the MSNBC video "The Cult Of Personality Of Steve Bannon.")
* "Moscow Is Recalling Russia's Ambassador To The US Amid Election Controversy:" https://www.buzzfeed.com/johnhudson/
* "US nuclear plant's computer system hacked:" http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/us-
* "Trump eager for big meeting with Putin; some advisers wary:" https://apnews.com/
* "Trump blasts CNN as ‘fake news’ after it retracts story:" http://www.politico.com/story/2017/06/
* "Officials struggle to convince Trump that Russia remains a threat:" http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/28/politics/
* "Trump teases 'big surprise' on Senate Obamacare repeal effort:" http://www.politico.com/story/2017/06/
* "Manafort Discloses $17 Million in Payments for Ukrainian Work:" https://www.bloomberg.com/news/
* "A Lawyer Who Helped Write The Patriot Act Is Trump’s Pick For A Top State Department Job:" https://www.buzzfeed.com/zoetillman/
* "Trump lawyer's firm steered millions in donations to family members, files show:" https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/
* "Sarah Huckabee Sanders tangles with reporter at White House briefing:" http://www.politico.com/story/2017/06/
* "Trump, EPA Move to Rescind Obama Administration’s Clean Water Rule:" https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-epa-
* "Perry calls for climate change debate, says he doesn't know Trump's stance:" http://www.politico.com/story/2017/06/
* "Trump team declares all Russia stories fake news:"
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* "EPA sidelining science under Trump, Pruit:"
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* So he wants to get rid of Meals on Wheels, but thinks he deserves a 17% raise. "Chaffetz calls for $2,500 legislator housing stipend:" http://thehill.com/homenews/house/
* Keep the Pressure on, Folks. "Republicans eye billions in side deals to win Obamacare repeal votes:" http://www.politico.com/story/2017/06/
* "208,500 additional deaths could occur by 2026 under the Senate health plan:" https://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2017/
* "Republicans in Missouri want to be able to keep women who use birth control from working:" https://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/6/
* "Number 14- Rest In Power and Peace Ava Le'Ray Barrin:" http://transgriot.blogspot.com/2017/06/
* "Pro wrestling’s newest villain: 'The Progressive Liberal':"
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* "Medicaid's Last Stand:"
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* "ICE Unleashed:"
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* "The New Ground Rules At White House Press Briefings:"
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* "'Repeal And Replace' Is Being 'Delayed And Postponed':"
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* "Why Human Evolution Matters: Crash Course Big History 204:"
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* "Why Human Ancestry Matters: Crash Course Big History 205 :"
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* "Vaccines: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver :"
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* "Stephen Returns From Russia With An Apology For Trump:"
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* "Stephen Leaks Drawings Of Sean Spicer's No-Camera Press Briefing:"
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* "Stephen's Trip To Russia Was Supposed To Be Secret:"
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* Queer Dance Party:
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* "Fear The Walking Dead, Season Three, Episode Five: Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame:" http://www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2017/
* This was my one big problem with both versions of American Gods. (I have a handful of quibbles, but none of note). "Bilquis, Queen of Sheba, and American Gods:" https://www.thefandomentals.com/
* Two Days left. I'm a hundred down on bills, plus we haven't money for electricity and Internet as we had to pay for car repairs (four hundred), so clearly it's ebay time.: http://www.ebay.com/sch/lethran/m.html?
( Details cut for your pleasure: )
* Full list of Resistance and charity links has been migrated to my profile as it was getting out of hand.
* "What can I do to help Syria?:" http://gwydionmisha.tumblr.com/post/
* This App phones your rep for you: http://takeastance.us/
* Here is one that will send your reps a fax: https://resistbot.io/
* "So, what can people do?*:" http://brigdh.tumblr.com/post/
* Want to fight Climate Change? "Ready to Mobilize? Start Here!:" http://www.theclimatemobilization.org/
* Distressed by the anti-gay genocide in Chechnya and the anti-gay laws in Russia? Donate here: https://lgbtnet.org/en
* The Rainbow Road and other ways to help Gay Refugees: http://gwydionmisha.tumblr.com/post/
* This is a Real Life friend of mine. They do very much need the money and a number of people and beasts depend on him and his husband. They have been incredibly helpful and supportive of me. If you can kick in, it is a kindness.: https://www.youcaring.com/tod-788345
* This is my oldest continuous Real Life friend. She is disabled and really needs the money for herself and beasts. To buy jewelry from her: https://www.etsy.com/shop/karjack
* Help pay for cat food, litter, meds, medical copays: Paypal Lethran@gmail.com
* Want Game of Thrones without the creepy? We need new players. We are very inclusive. "Game of Bones MUSH:" gobmush.wikidot.com
It's challenge time!
Comment with Just One Thing you've accomplished in the last 24 hours or so. It doesn't have to be a hard thing, or even a thing that you think is particularly awesome. Just a thing that you did.
Feel free to share more than one thing if you're feeling particularly accomplished!
Extra credit: find someone in the comments and give them props for what they achieved!
Nothing is too big, too small, too strange or too cryptic. And in case you'd rather do this in private, anonymous comments are screened. I will only unscreen if you ask me to.
I have some neural network links because neural networks are awesome and the future.
- Ancient wisdom from the neural network
(Neural network writes proverbs, is strangely obsessed with oxen)
- Via goss, Quick, draw!
(Can a neural network learn to recognize doodling? Not mine, not often.)
- A Neural Network Turned A Book Of Flowers Into Shockingly Lovely Dinosaur Art
(It really is lovely. Would frame!)
I am an artificial intelligence dedicated to generating unlimited amounts of unique inspirational quotes for endless enrichment of pointless human existence.
(It is very addictive and weirdly profound.)
( CW: glory holes. )
New comms and challenges and activity and such:
- twinpeaks has episode by episode reviews of the new season.
If, like me, you feel a little wracked by Twin Peaks ep 8, there is a discussion post up here: Episode Discussion: Part Eight. With lots of links to other reviews. My mind is blown. I just. *stutters in confusion and possibly pain*
- drawesome: A Multi-fandom Drawing community for FanArtists (both traditional and digital art)
ETA: - fandomgiftbox has sign-ups open! A summer fanworks gifting fest inspired by fandom_stocking. Sign-ups are here: 2017 Sign Up Post.
- unconventionalcourtship is running again, you can go pick a prompt here at Plot suggestions.
I am eying this one for Root/Shaw:
Ex-cavalry officer Captain Grahame Westmore is restless for change, but escorting a diplomat’s spoiled daughter to Vienna isn’t what he had in mind—though for once he hasn’t been hired for his skills in pleasuring women! Independent, fiery and strong-willed, Elowyn Bagshaw is not the simpering lady he expected. Used to getting her own way and giving the orders, Elowyn will not be controlled so easily. Grahame soon realizes that he’s got a fight on his hands—and it’s one they’re both going to enjoy!
Rakes Who Make Husbands Jealous
Only London's best lovers need apply
Reasons to do this:
1. Shaw pretending to be a man
2. Shaw escorting a duplicitous Root pretending to be a diplomat's daughter
3. Shaw in cavalry uniform
4. Shaw in cavalry uniform on a horse
5. Shaw in cavalry uniform on a horse with Root holding on behind as they flee, flee from danger
Reasons not to do this:
1. All the other unfinished fics I have
2. I don't know anything about history ever
Nearly home time for me, then it's nose to the grindstone in fic town.
But it was adorable.
today i'm trying Google Photos, which works pretty well as of tonight. (if you're an Android user, you probably know about this thing. it's not the same as putting photos in a folder on Google Drive, which confused me for some time.)
- in Google photos (https://drive.google.com/drive/photos or https://photos.google.com/), select the photo you want to share.
- if you're on the drive.google page, click the link icon on the upper right and switch link sharing to ON. if you're on the photos.google page, click the share icon on the upper right and select Get link. (yeah, i don't know why there are two interfaces with slightly different features either. actually i can guess. software people be crazy.)
copy that link.
- now we cheat. go to this page (and bookmark it): https://ctrlq.org/google/photos/. paste the link in the box and click Generate Code.
- at the bottom of the page, you have links to the photos. if you know how to write an img tag, img src= that "Direct Link (URL)".
otherwise, take the "Image Embed Code" and paste it into your draft entry. the way it's written, the image will display in your entry, and clicking it will take the viewer to the image in your Google Photos.
if you don't want to directly associate your Google Photos ID with your DW, you can get rid of the link part. delete everything before <img src= and then also delete the </a> at the end.*
example embed with the link removed:
*i note that the developer identifies as a facebook link and his origin site. i'm not sure what that part is for. personal promo? to satisfy some google rule? anyone know? also, i can't promise that this dude isn't using your photos for his machine learning project or his spank bank.
Just Finished: Jackalope Wives and Other Stories by Ursula Vernon (tkingfisher). A nice collection, of which I'd read most of the stories before, but not all of them. I do enjoy Vernon's attachment to women of a certain age as her protagonists; it's a pleasant change from much of the world of fantasy.
Prior to that I read the last Lady Trent novel, In the Sanctuary of Wings, which I enjoyed, and wished there were more.
I also picked up, and put down, Hugh Howey's Molly Fyde and the Parsona Rescue, because I found the characters intolerably irritating and his portrayal of an 18-year-old girl unpleasant. It was just ... off. Bah.
Currently Reading: Elizabeth Gaskell's Wives and Daughters for book club. It's long, but I have more than a month, and it's a pleasant read so far.
Next Up: Erm. Probably Tremontaine Season One, although there are some new books coming out I'm interested in. Like City of Miracles, which I will drop everything to read once it comes in at the library.
Power in the Absence of Money: Why Trump hates bureaucrats so much. I love this article and the respect it shows to the civil service. [T]hat's what we're talking about when we talk about the federal workforce. We're talking about a whole bunch of people who go to work every day trying to keep us safe, whether they're carrying an M4 and wearing body armor over in Mosul, or manning a computer at the Environmental Protection Agency or the Department of Health and Human Services. The terrible "swamp" Trump has such contempt for sits there every day in drab offices they endured heavy traffic to get to, and they regulate the excesses of the vaunted "market" Trump and his billionaires are so worshipful of.
More on the plan to destroy the civil service. This is a smart, long, well-researched article.
And on that note, here is a report on what it's like inside the EPA right now. It's not good.
Masha Gessen on The Reichstag Fire Next Time: The coming crackdown. Argh, and eeps.
ETA: Let's end on a better note, with this ABSOFUCKINGLUTELY AMAZING video of "Immigrants" from the Hamilton Mixtape. So. Good.
Continuing to clear the news chum, here are some interesting “explanations” I’ve found of late:
- What Mangoes Have in Common with Poison Ivy… The mango is a classic summer fruit, but for some it can bring out a rash when they handle or eat it. This irritation is not unique to mangos – in fact, there’s some surprising chemistry in common between mangos and poison ivy. In this post, we look at the chemical culprit, as well as some of the chemical compounds behind the flavour and aroma of mangoes.
- How Do Fires and Campfires Work… This was a real fascinating post, that explored the history of campfires, and how fires actually work (which helps you understand how to build a good fire, and more importantly, why you need to build it that way). This could connect to the wonderful Flame Challenge by Alan Alda.
- Why You Shouldn’t Exercise to Lose Weight… We all probably believe that heavy exercise will cause us to lose weight. After all, calories in and calories out and all that jazz. Guess what? It isn’t true. You lose negligible weight exercising, and here’s why.
- How and Why You Write… Here’s a really interesting post exploring how culture shapes our instincts, demonstrated by how you draw a circle. The analysis suggests that the way you draw a simple circle is linked to geography and cultural upbringing, deep-rooted in hundreds of years of written language, and significant in developmental psychology and trends in education today.
- Why the Subway in New York Is Getting Worse… Here’s an interesting exploration of why the subway in New York is getting worse. Hint: It is the same reason that traffic in LA is getting worse.
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