Jacques de Molay was burned at the stake 700 years ago this week. The unfinished cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris—its towers completed just 65 years earlier—stood nearby as de Molay went up in flames. His death sparked conspiracy theories that have traveled through the centuries, across oceans and Ivy League campuses, and onto our flat-screen TVs.
As the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, de Molay was considered a heretic by both the French Monarchy and the papacy. King Philip IV of France had him tortured and burned, slowly, on the Île de la Cité, the tiny Parisian Island in the Seine. It was March 18, 1314—give or [...]
What happens when a candidate wins the presidential race and gets that first top-level security briefing in the Oval Office? The comedian Bill Hicks had a pretty good idea, which he explained not long after Bill Clinton was inaugurated.
"No matter what you promise on the campaign trail," Hicks said in a 1993 routine, "when you win, you go into this smoke-filled room with the 12 industrialist capitalist scum-fucks who got you in there. And you're in this smoky room, and this little film screen comes down, and a big guy with a cigar goes, 'Roll the film.' And it's a shot of the Kennedy assassination from an angle [...]
One of McDonald’s most divisive products, the McRib, made its return last week. For three decades, the sandwich has come in and out of existence, popping up in certain regional markets for short promotions, then retreating underground to its porky lair—only to be revived once again for reasons never made entirely clear. Each time it rolls out nationwide, people must again consider this strange and elusive product, whose unique form sets it deep in the Uncanny Valley—and exactly why its existence is so fleeting.
The McRib was introduced in 1982—1981 according to some sources—and was created by McDonald’s former executive chef Rene Arend, the same man who invented the Chicken [...]