Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: Face masks and military uniforms / ProPublica and diversity / Drive-in churches for the faithful / Islamic State sees an opportunity / The myth of free shipping

This week: Face masks and military uniforms / ProPublica and diversity / Drive-in churches for the faithful / Islamic State sees an opportunity / The myth of free shipping

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. Safeguarding Digitial Democracy: Digital Innovation and Democracy Initiative Roadmap
By Karen Kornbluh, Ellen P. Goodman and Eli Weiner | The German Marshall Fund of the United States | March 2020
“The United States is woefully unprepared for disinformation wars.”

2. ‘No skull and crossbones’: Here’s how the six services are implementing military face mask guidance
By Chad Garland | Stars and Stripes | April 2020
“Balaclavas may be OK, but ski masks may not be, depending on which uniform a service member wears, under service-specific guidance on the Pentagon’s new facial covering requirements.”

3. What ProPublica Is Doing About Diversity in 2020
By Caroline Chen, Liz Sharp and Richard Tofel | ProPublica | April 2020
“Here is our annual report on the breakdown of our staff and how we’re working to create a more diverse news organization and inclusive journalism community.”

4. Drive-in churches an option for faithful who want closeness
By Giovanna Dell’Orto | Associated Press | April 2020
“Physical presence is no gimmick, but rather embodies the strength that communities of worshippers draw from one another, gatherings central to Christianity and other faiths.”

5. Islamic State Aims for Comeback Amid Virus-Expedited U.S. Withdrawal
By Pesha Magid | Foreign Policy | April 2020
“Iraqis fear their country will become a new battleground between ISIS and Iran-backed militias.”

6. The 500-million-year-old reason behind the unique scent of rain
By Rich Haridy | New Atlas | April 2020
“New research from an international team of scientists is suggesting that instantly recognizable earthy smell after rain is released by bacteria trying to attract a particular arthropod as a way to spread its spores. The smell is a 500-million-year-old example of chemical communication, evolved to help a particular type of bacteria spread.”

7. The Poison Squad
American Experience :: PBS | January 2020
“By the close of the Industrial Revolution, the American food supply was tainted with frauds, fakes, and legions of new and untested chemicals, dangerously threatening the health of consumers.”

8. Cooking and healing in my mother’s Vietnamese kitchen
By Kim O’Connell | Al Jazeera | December 2019
“In the midst of misunderstandings and estrangement, one woman and her mother found solace in making spring rolls.”

9. Stop Believing in Free Shipping
By Amanda Mull | The Atlantic | January / February 2020
“How retailers hide the costs of delivery — and why we’re such suckers for their ploys”

10. ‘Is This the Worst Possible Time to Break Up With Someone?’
By Heather Havrilesky | The Cut :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“Does your breakup advice shift, knowing that we might be stuck and unable to access social supports and friends and bars etc. for an indefinite amount of time?”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: Losing any sense of time in the coronavirus crisis / Reading ‘Moby Dick’ while alone / How humans endure isolation / The natural world is blossoming / Sex workers in Spain adjust to the pandemic

This week: Losing any sense of time in the coronavirus crisis / Reading ‘Moby Dick’ / How humans endure isolation / The natural world is blossoming / Sex workers in Spain adjust to the pandemic

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. Why Coronavirus Makes February Feel Like Six Months Ago
By Jesse Singal | Intelligencer :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“As the new reality of coronavirus has swept over the country and gradually sunk in, it has brought with it a strange distortion of time. March, naturally, was the month most affected: It feels like someone physically stretched it out, like it took 100 days for it to unfold in all its horror and weirdness.”

2. How to Read Moby-Dick, The Perfect Book for Troubled Times
By Alex Scordelis| InsideHook | April 2020
“Two chapters a night, at your desk, with a glass of Scotch”

3. The Big Burn
American Experience :: PBS | January 2019
“In the summer of 1910, the largest fire in American history raged in the Northern Rockies.”

4. The Pandemic Is Turning the Natural World Upside Down
By Marina Koren | The Atlantic | April 2020
“Widespread social-distancing measures have produced some jarring effects across land, air, and sea.”
Also see, from the Houston Chronicle: Seismologists search for new earthquake data in suddenly silent world

5. Inside the Male-Dominated Meme Hijacked by Lib-Bashing Trumpsters
By Soham Gadre | The Daily Beast | April 2020
“The new documentary ‘TFW NO GF (That Face When No Girlfriend)’ examines the wildly popular Wojak meme — and why lost, lonely young men relate to it so deeply.”

6. How the coronavirus crisis has affected sex workers in one of Europe’s biggest brothels
By Rebeca Carranco | El Pais | April 2020
“Women at a well-known club in the Catalan border town of La Jonquera were turned out on the street from one day to the next”

7. How will humans, by nature social animals, fare when isolated?
The Economist | April 2020
“Covid-19 will harm people’s mental health”

8. Exxon’s Snake Oil
By Savannah Jacobson | Columbia Journalism Review | Spring 2020
“The story of oil company propaganda begins in 1914, with the Ludlow Massacre.”

9. “When can we really rest?”
By Nadja Drost, Carlos Villalón, Bruno Federico and Lisette Poole | The California Sunday Magazine| April 2020
“More migrants than ever are crossing the Colombia-Panama border to reach the U.S. Five days inside the Darién Gap, one of the most dangerous journeys in the world.”

10. ‘The Woman in Michigan’ Goes National
By Tim Alberta | Politico Magazine | April 2020
“Governor Gretchen Whitmer is dealing with a historic pandemic, a bullying president and a big job tryout.”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: How does this end? / Jellyfish may inherit the Earth / Birdsongs comprise the coronavirus soundtrack / When a mathematical proof sends shockwaves / The rise and fall of Zoom

This week: How does this end? / Jellyfish may inherit the Earth / Birdsongs comprise the coronavirus soundtrack / When a mathematical proof sends shockwaves / The rise and fall of Zoom

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. There Is No Plan for the End of the Coronavirus Crisis
By David Wallace-Wells | Intelligencer :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“[H]ow and at what point and in what ways we will try to exit this temporary-but-indefinite wartimelike national bunkering almost all 330 million of us now find ourselves in. What, exactly, is the endgame here?”

2. Sealab
American Experience :: PBS | February 2019
“On a February day in 1969, off the shore of northern California, a U.S. Navy crane carefully lowered 300 tons of metal into the Pacific Ocean. The massive tubular structure was an audacious feat of engineering — a pressurized underwater habitat, complete with science labs and living quarters for an elite group of divers who hoped to spend days or even months at a stretch living and working on the ocean floor.”

3. Jellyfish, not the meek, might inherit the Earth
The Economist | April 2020
“They figure in the grand scheme of nature, providing food for sea turtles, penguins, lobsters and (primarily in Asia) humans. They act as a sink for greenhouse gases; they have played a role in Nobel-prizewinning research in chemistry and medicine.”

4. Letting Birdsong Fill This New Pandemic Silence
By Shobha Rao | LitHub | April 2020
“But as I journey through these sounds, almost always, at the end of it, I’ll hear birdsong. And that’s it. That’s when I know I’ve reached the end. That I will reach no greater sound.”

5. The Coronavirus Coups Are Upon Us
By Adam Weinstein | The New Republic | April 2020
“Emergency contagion measures are quickly eroding democracy worldwide.”

6. Mathematical Proof That Rocked Number Theory Will Be Published
By Davide Castelvecchi | Scientific American | April 2020
“But some experts say author Shinichi Mochizuki failed to fix fatal flaw in the solution of a major arithmetics problem”

7. Did My Fundamentalist Upbringing Prepare Me For Coronavirus?
By Sarah Jones | Intelligencer :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“For American Evangelicals, the ’90s were the era of apocalyptic fantasia. Almost everyone I knew believed that Christ would return soon, and rapture his saints into heaven to spare them the death throes of the world.”

8. Zoom faces a privacy and security backlash as it surges in popularity
By Tom Warren | The Verge | April 2020
“The pressure mounts as Zoom risks becoming a victim of its own success”

9. Roommates
By Meher Ahmad, Alessandra Bergamin and Joy Shan | The California Sunday Magazine | April 2020
“The creative and sometimes cramped ways people live together”

10. ‘Overwhelming and terrifying’: the rise of climate anxiety
By Matthew Taylor and Jessica Murray | The Guardian | February 2020
“Experts concerned young people’s mental health particularly hit by reality of the climate crisis”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: A coronavirus baby boom? / The Legacy of Bill Withers / A doctor’s view of ground zero / Seasonal wildflowers pose a new danger / The man who saved millions of lives

This week: A coronavirus baby boom? / The Legacy of Bill Withers / A doctor’s view of ground zero / Seasonal wildflowers pose a new danger / The man who saved millions of lives

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. Will the coronavirus lockdown lead to a baby boom?
The Economist | April 2020
“Deadly epidemics seem to depress birth rates in the short term”

2. New Mystery: What Happens When Animals Get Infected by Humans?
By David Axe | The Daily Beast | April 2020
“Animal experts, especially those working with non-human apes, are worried that the virus is set to spread.”

3. What’s Become of the Arctic
By Tom Kizzia | Columbia Journalism Review | Spring 2020
“Alaska is heating up twice as fast as the rest of the country. Will journalists find a way to tell the whole story?”

4. Bill Withers: The Soul Man Who Walked Away
By Andy Greene | Rolling Stone | April 2015
“In 1970, the singer was a guy in his thirties with a job and a lunch pail. Then he wrote ‘Ain’t No Sunshine,’ and things got complicated”

5. California’s Wildflowers Are Blooming, Will Influencers Resist the Urge for a Selfie?
By Winston Ross | The California Sunday Magazine | April 2020
“The blooms in California’s poppy and wildflower fields have started, making some nervous that even a fraction of last year’s crowds could be a major problem.”

6. Women in War: On Great Correspondents Past and Present
By Jacqueline Winspear | LitHub | April 2020
“From Sapper Dorothy in WWI, to the Citizen Journalists of Today”

7. ‘A Matter Of Common Decency’: What Literature Can Teach Us About Epidemics
By Melissa Block | The Coronavirus Crisis :: NPR | April 2020
“Professor Alice Kaplan has been scrambling to revise her lectures for the French literature class she teaches at Yale University. … She is one of many readers who are revisiting and rethinking literature about mass disease in the context of the coronavirus pandemic.”

8. Flat Earthers: What They Believe and Why
By Steve Mirsky | Scientific American | March 2020
“Michael Marshall, project director of the Good Thinking Society in the U.K., talks about flat earth belief and its relationship to conspiracy theories and other anti-science activities.”

9. The Doctor Holding the Camera
By Patrick Schnell and Anna Silman | Intelligencer :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“‘Today, I was there for maybe five hours. In that time, five patients died.'”

10. The Man Who Tried To Feed The World
American Experience :: PBS | April 2020
“In 1966, drought and an exploding population confronted India with the imminent threat of a severe famine. … India turned to Norman Borlaug, an unassuming plant breeder from Iowa whose combination of scientific knowledge and raw determination had made him a legend among a small handful of fellow specialists.”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: Getting married in the coronavirus era / Help discover a new galaxy / Why Don DeLillo deserves the Nobel Prize / The obesity factor in coronavirus danger / You are what you read during the quarantine

This week: Getting married in the coronavirus era / Help discover a new galaxy / Why Don DeLillo deserves the Nobel Prize / The obesity factor in coronavirus danger / You are what you read during the quarantine

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. An Oral History of a Socially Distanced Wedding
By Madison Malone Kircher | The Cut :: New York Magazine | March 2020
“The whole event happened in just three minutes. This is how you pull off an impromptu wedding amid a global pandemic.”

2. Comprehensive coverage of COVID-19
By Patrick Maks | The Definitive Source :: Associated Press | April 2020
“From Italy to Spain and New York to New Orleans, AP journalists around the world are working tirelessly to tell the story of the COVID-19 pandemic in all formats.”

3. Email Coroniquette: What ‘I Hope You’re Doing Well’ Really Means
BY Madison Malone Kircher | Vulture :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“Communication, though, is always about transaction.”

4. Why I’m Not Going to South Padre Island
By Helen Anders | Texas Monthly | April 2020
“Even though it’s legal for property owners like me to be there, it’s not the right thing to do.”

5. Using COVID-19 to wage war on reusable grocery bags
By Emily Atkin | Heated | March 2020
“Conservative interests are teaming up to bring back the single-use plastic bag, using scientifically questionable claims that reusable bags spread coronavirus.”

6. NASA Moon Program and Hubble Telescope Successor Face COVID-19 Delays
By Irene Klotz | Scientific American | April 2020
“Space agencies must balance keeping staff safe and meeting launch deadlines”

7. Cooped Up at Home? Help Scientists Spot Penguins from Space or Seek Out Galaxies
By Meghan Bartels | Space.com | March 2020
“Some citizen science projects can be done during quarantine”

8. Stockholm, Are You Listening?
By Gerald Howard | BookForum | April / May 2020
“Why Don DeLillo deserves the Nobel”

9. What Your Go-To Quarantine Read Says About You
By Emily Temple | LitHub | April 2020
“Some of us are reading for comfort, some for distraction, some for enlightenment, some for visions of the apocalypse. Some are just reading so that they can stop staring at a screen for a little while. While everyone is dealing with this in their own way, you can tell a lot about someone from the first book they turn to in a crisis.”

10. Why is New Orleans’ coronavirus death rate twice New York’s? Obesity is a factor
By Brad Brooks | Reuters | April 2020
“New Orleans residents suffer from obesity, diabetes and hypertension at rates higher than the national average, conditions that doctors and public health officials say can make patients more vulnerable to COVID-19, the highly contagious respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus.”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: The ultimate coronavirus love story / The return of board games / Retracing the journey from the earth to the moon / Celebrating the sex appeal of pregnant women / How this world will never be the same

This week: The ultimate coronavirus love story / The return of board games / Retracing the journey from the earth to the moon / Celebrating the sex appeal of pregnant women / How this world will never be the same

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. Lockdown love stories: how to date at a distance
By Sergio Colombo | 1843 :: The Economist | March 2020
“Amid strict quarantine measures to contain coronavirus, residents of Milan are rediscovering their romanticismo
Also see, from The New Republic: The Disunited States of America
Also see, from The Atlantic: The Coronavirus Is a Disaster for Feminism

2. Table-top generals
By Tim Cross | 1843 :: The Economist | December 2017
“Board games are back, thanks to the lessons their designers have learned from computer games.”

3. African killifish may hold key to stopping ageing in humans
By Nicola Davis | The Guardian | February 2020
“Turquoise killifish is able to suspend its development for longer than its average lifespan”

4. Chasing the Moon
By Robert Stone | American Experience :: PBS | July 2019
“It took millions of steps to make one giant leap.”

5. We should celebrate the sex appeal of pregnant women, not shame them
By Yomi Adegoke | The Guardian | February 2020
“Nothing makes me happier than seeing women such as Jodie Turner Smith deem their bump a part of their body to show proudly.”

6. Scientists in Israel grow date plants from 2,000-year-old seeds
By Nicola Davis | The Guardian | February 2020
“Seeds found in Judean desert are male and female, leading to hopes of producing dates”

7. ‘We can’t go back to normal’: how will coronavirus change the world?
By Peter Baker | The Guardian | March 2020
“Times of upheaval are always times of radical change. Some believe the pandemic is a once-in-a-generation chance to remake society and build a better future. Others fear it may only make existing injustices worse. ”

8. A Therapist’s Advice for Couples Isolating Together
By Jane Starr Drinkard | The Cut :: New York Magazine | April 2020
“Thanks to tight quarters (and looming existential dread), couples are arguing about everything and nothing at all.”

9. Go grocery shopping every two weeks? You can — and without hoarding
By Ann Maloney | Voraciously :: The Washington Post | April 2020
One tip: “Buy products that you will use even after the pandemic is over. Don’t buy items that you don’t like or are allergic to just because they have a long use-by date and are available.”

10. Stubble in mind: what growing a ‘crisis beard’ represents
By Priya Elan | The Guardian | February 2020
“From Beto O’Rourke and Justin Trudeau to Sylvester Stallone and David Letterman, sprouting whiskers at a certain age is loaded with symbolism”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: What leads to emergence of a virus / Our love for leather / The end of the Evo Morales era / Life at the North Pole / Chaos under the snowy surface

This week: What leads to emergence of a virus / Our love for leather / The end of the Evo Morales era / Life at the North Pole / Chaos under the snowy surface

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. Destroyed Habitat Creates the Perfect Conditions for Coronavirus to Emerge
By John Vidal | Scientific American | March 2020
“COVID-19 may be just the beginning of mass pandemics”
Also see, from The Guardian: Dogs working from home during coronavirus crisis? There’s an Instagram account for that
Also see, from The Cut: Walking the Dog Is the Only Time I Feel Sane

2. Inside the Story of How H-E-B Planned for the Pandemic
By Dan Solomon and Paula Forbes | Texas Monthly | March 2020
“The grocer started communicating with Chinese counterparts in January and was running tabletop simulations a few weeks later. (But nothing prepared it for the rush on toilet paper.)”

3. A Forest Submerged 60,000 Years Ago Could Save Your Life One Day
By JoAnna Klein | The New York Times | March 2020
“Before this underwater forest disappears, scientists recently raced to search for shipworms and other sea life that might conceal medicine of the future.”

4. Saudi official urges Muslims to delay hajj plans over virus
By Aya Batrawy and Jon Gambrell | Associated Press | April 2020
“Saudi Arabia has barred people from entering or exiting three major cities, including Mecca and Medina, and imposed a nighttime curfew across the country. Like other countries around the world and in the Middle East, the kingdom also suspended all inbound and outbound commercial flights.”

5. The Fall of Evo Morales
By Jon Lee Anderson | The New Yorker | March 2020
“A controversial socialist leader fled his country. Was he deposed — or did he escape justice?”

6. Why we all submit to leather
By Matthew Sweet | 1843 :: The Economist | April / May 2020
“Evocative of both the authoritarian state and the rebel cause, leather is a material that evokes both freedom and restaint”

7. Time Has No Meaning at the North Pole
By Katie Weeman | Observations :: Scientific American | March 2020
“The utter lack of time zones, daylight and people creates a bizarre world”

8. Snow Science Against the Avalanche
By James Somers | The New Yorker | March 2020
“On slopes shallow enough to accumulate snow but steep enough for it to be unstable, chaos hides beneath the surface.”

9. What The Fed Was Designed To Do
By Bronson Arcuri | Planet Money :: NPR | March 2020
“In 1906, an earthquake in San Francisco started a chain of events that destroyed the U.S. economy by 1907. It also led to the creation of the country’s most powerful economic tool: the Federal Reserve.”

10. Hanging trees and hollering ghosts: the unsettling art of the American deep south
By Lanre Bakare | The Guardian | February 2020
“From lynching and slavery to the civil rights movement, Alabama’s artists expressed the momentous events they lived through — as a landmark new exhibition reveals”