From The Archives
86

America's Unchecked Gun Culture Killed Trayvon Martin

As the investigation into what happened on February 26 continues, it appears increasingly more likely that Trayvon Martin, not George Zimmerman, was the one exercising his rights under Florida's Stand Your Ground law. On CNN, Martin's mom declared as much, saying, "My son was exercising his stand your ground rule.” Except, of course, 17-year-old Martin did not possess the single crucial element for standing one's ground in the United States: A gun. Florida law restricts concealed handguns to those 21 and older. Instead the teen had a bag of Skittles.

This will happen again, probably soon, but not because of race relations or hoodies; because of guns and a [...]

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8

Can a Crazed Jet Blue Pilot Break Down a Bulletproof Cockpit Door?

There's always a bit of scaremongering that goes on with the genre of Crazy Airline Stories. Are our skies safe? What about the children? That kind of thing. So, in the story of the Jet Blue pilot, Clayton Osbon, who lost it this week and was restrained by passengers and crew, the LA Times says today that he "pounded so hard on the locked cockpit door that the first officer feared Osbon was breaking through the bulletproof barrier." This sentence reads funny, on first glance! But the door is bulletproof, one thinks! Surely a non-bullet, then, can't break down the door? Or can it.

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6

Young Elephant Tries To Run Away From Circus For Same Reason Young Humans Try To Run Away To Join Circus

"Handlers say Baby ran away from the circus because he refused to take a shower."

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9

Bear Saves Man From Cat

"A California man says he was saved from a mountain lion by a bear." GO ON.

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8

When Your Friend Is Also Your Boss: A Cautionary Tale

This series is brought to you by TurboTax Federal Free Edition.

Mike Dang: Logan, do you remember when I was your boss? Good times, huh?

Logan Sachon: Well, Mike, I do remember it, but apparently not the way you do, because I thought it was a terrible time.

Mike: Yes, well, becoming your boss was sort of an accident. We both started out as contributors to the website where we worked, and you sent me this really cute email saying you liked my writing, and I replied that I really liked your style too, and then we IM'd everyday forever. Yay! Best friends! And then I got [...]

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12

Story About Eggs Boiled In Urine Gives Reporter Multiple Opportunities To Say "Urine"

Yes, urine!

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5

Bill Callahan, "Heaven Help The Child"

The wonderful depressive Bill Callahan has recorded a terrific version of Mickey Newbury's 1973 nugget "Heaven Help the Child." In a cool move, Callahan's label, Drag City Records, has released it as a split 7-inch single with the original. The video looks like the cover to Brian Eno's Before and After Science album.

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15

Spain on Strike, Where Union Isn't a Dirty Word

It's a very remarkable feeling to read the Guardian's ongoing account of today's general strike in Spain. If this were happening in the U.S., it would have been like, "COPS SKIRMISH WITH JOBLESS UNIONS" or something inexplicable and misguided. Over there, it's like, "This is what workers are protesting, and also the cops hit this one dude at a peaceful labor protest." (The Times however did a nice job this morning.) The general strike is focused on the new government's response to the crippling recession and high unemployment, which has as a central component easing of employment laws, so that it will be easier to make more [...]

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13

Today In "Be Afraid"

Sorry, ladies: "JUST one alcoholic drink a day can increase your risk of breast cancer, according to a new study…. no woman should have more than ONE alcoholic drink a day — and those at a higher risk because of their family history should avoid booze completely."

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5

Earl Scruggs, 1924-2012

"Rather than speak out about the connections between folk and country in the war-torn, politically contentious ‘60s, he simply showed up at folk festivals and played, at least when he and Flatt weren’t at the Grand Ole Opry. During the long-hair/ short-hair skirmishes of the ‘60s and ‘70s, he simply showed up and played, with Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and The Byrds. And when staunch fans of bluegrass – a genre that would not exist in a recognizable form without Mr. Scruggs’ banjo – railed against stylistic experimentation, Mr. Scruggs happily jammed away with sax player King Curtis, sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, piano man Elton John and anyone else [...]

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27

32 YouTube Comments Inspired by Bobby Goldsboro’s “Honey”

• ahhh 1968..the 'good innocent part' I was 10 years old, and when me and my friends heard it for the first time, we cried…her going 'away' meant she was dying

• I loved this song when ot firtlst came out. I've lovedbit ever since. I could never list er n to it WI Rt hout balling befote it was half through. Apparently I still cant. thank you

• the first time i heard this song, my cat had just died and it came on the tv and just shook me. i love this song. i cry everytime

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0

Splitsider's Guide to LA's Comedy Scene

The City of Angels. La-la Land. Lipstick City. Tinsel Town. Hollyweird. I could list hokey nicknames for LA all day long, but maybe it’s just best to describe the town as an overcrowded mess of traffic, pollution, street gangs, broken dreams, and one of the most vibrant and active live comedy scenes in human history.

Because Los Angeles is the entertainment capital of the world, most of your favorite comedians from movies and TV live here, and a lot of them make it a habit to, despite their busy day jobs, continue to perform live stand-up or improv to keep their chops up. Celebrities aren’t the only ones taking [...]

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7

What Did Karl Marx Predict?

Here's a terrific piece by John Lanchester on what Karl Marx got right, what he got wrong, and what he managed to get right even by being wrong.

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0

Biology Professor Glad He Is Not Dolphin

"I have often thought, as I watched their complicated alliance relationships, that their social lives would be mentally and physically exhausting, and I’m glad I’m not a dolphin." —University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth Richard Conner talks Discovery's Jennifer Viegas about his study of a community of 120 bottlenose dolphins in Western Australia's Shark Bay. Male dolphins "engage in extensive bisexuality, combined with periods of exclusive homosexuality," and work in pairs, or sometimes trios, to "sequester and herd" individual females to mate with in mating season.

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10

The Loveliest Lynchee Was Our Lord

You know who else wore a hoodie?

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10

What To Do With The Cabbage That Comes With Shanghai Soup Dumplings

Do you like Shanghai soup dumplings? Of course you do. Here you are, reading this sentence, after all. And when you eat them—at Joe’s Shanghai if you are in 1998 or are Jean-Georges Vongerichten, or at Shanghai Asian Cuisine if you are Robert Sietsema, or Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao if you live in Flushing or are up for that kind of travel, or at the Grand Sichuan International in Chelsea if you are me, most of the times I have eaten them over the past fifteen years—do you also eat the leaves of steamed cabbage upon which they sit in their wicker-basket platters? No? [...]

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2

This Is All Well And Good But I Want Someone To Write A Poem That Rhymes "Zizmor" With "Jizz More"

"The Metropolitan Transportation Authority on Tuesday relaunched its Poetry in Motion program that ended in 2008, offering straphangers snippets of text meant to transport them away from a crowded, rumbling present." The first poem in the new batch comes from the legendary Dorothea Tanning.

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12

The Amazing Moral Fables of Pinterest

If you're not paying attention to the always incredible goings-on at Pinterest, some recent updates:

• Pinterest is perfect for people to find and buy things. That's why this spammer is making a minimum of $1,000 a day, all from affiliate links. Nothing really wrong with that: affiliate links to Amazon are a good business! And so is shoving up thousands of Pinterest pics a day, with affiliate links attached, apparently. BRB, gotta get on this, hate to watch a gravy train pass me by.

• Last week, when Pinterest rolled out new terms of service, which including banning thinspiration blogs—wait, sidebar? The poor anorexic bloggers! They are to [...]

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0

I Can't Believe It's Almost April

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11

Hail Tulisa, The Female Boss

A series dedicated to explaining Britain's manufactured celebrities to an American audience.

When a society is as riven with conflict as today’s Britain, it takes a special kind of momentous event, the recognition of a greater enemy, to unite Tories and socialists, celebs and civilians, those who yearn for Kate Winslet’s excommunication from the planet and those who’d be content with her bleak and everlasting obscurity. So it was that last week, the nation put aside its differences and came together in support of one grievously wronged young woman: 23-year-old Tulisa, formerly of hip-hop trio N-Dubz and now a solo artist and beloved judge on Aristotelian forum of dialectical exchange [...]

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