Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: Birds that can hear tsunamis / This fall’s biggest movies / Science struggles to understand Hurricane Ida / The Sino-Japanese War / The presidential anguish in ‘Fail-Safe’

This week: Birds that can hear tsunamis / This fall’s biggest movies / Science struggles to understand Hurricane Ida / The Sino-Japanese War / The presidential anguish in ‘Fail-Safe’

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. When Lord Kelvin Nearly Killed Darwin’s Theory
By Mano Singham | Scientific American | September 2021
“The eminent 19th-century physicist argued—wrongly, it turned out—that Earth wasn’t old enough to have let natural selection play out”

2. How abortion restrictions like Texas’ push pregnant people into poverty
By Chabeli Carrazana | The 19th | September 2021
“A study of hundreds of pregnant women over a decade found that 72 percent of those who were denied care ended up living in poverty.”

3. Birds Can Hear Tsunamis Way Before They Hit
By Hakai Magazine and Jason Gregg | The Atlantic | September 2021
“Scientists hope the ability can be turned into an early-warning system.”

4. The 9 Biggest Movies To Watch This Fall (And Other Films That Sound Intriguing)
By Bob Mondello | All Things Considered :: NPR | September 2021
“After stockpiling films for more than 16 months, Hollywood is practically bursting with prestige attractions ready to premiere.”

5. Back to School: Abe Lincoln’s Grammar Book
By Mark Dimunation | The Library of Congress | August 2021
“Abraham Lincoln never really had a ‘back to school’ moment, as the future president was raised on a farm and had less than a year of formal schooling. This didn’t mean he didn’t love learning, though. From an early age, he devoted intense effort to self-study through reading.”

6. American diplomats recall 20-hour days, sleeping in Kabul airport while helping those desperate to flee
By Joe Davidson | The Washington Post | September 2021
“Right up until the end, they were surprised that the situation deteriorated so quickly.”

7. After Hurricane Ida, researchers take stock
By Rachel Fritts and Jocelyn Kaiser | Science | September 2021
“Better preparations help avoid repeat of 2005 Katrina disaster”

8. Marie Tharp: Mapping the Ocean Floor
By Mike Klein | The Library of Congress | August 2021
“Marie Tharp was well-suited to the task of interpreting the texture and rhythm of the Earth’s surface, including the ocean floor — a space almost entirely unknown to humans, even after they began sailing the seas. A scientist, she had a background in mathematics, music, petroleum geology and cartography.”

9. Fail Safe: Very Little Left of the World
By Bilge Ebiri | The Criterion Collection | January 2020
“We can certainly understand the president’s anguish, but we don’t really see it — nor, interestingly, do we really feel it.”

10. Horace
By Melvyn Bragg | In Our Time :: BBC 4 | 2014-2018
Also see: The Sino-Japanese War | Photosynthesis | The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam | The Philosophy of Solitude

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Math gender gap / Herringbone sportcoats / Artistic genius / Stopping college suicide / Why balloons?

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism. Read past recommendations from this series here.

1. ID errors put hundreds in L.A. County jails
By Robert Faturechi and Jack Leonard | Los Angeles Times | Dec. 25
“Wrongful incarcerations totaled 1,480 in the last five years, a Times inquiry finds.”

2. Martin Sheen, Family (Filmmaking) Man
By Melena Ryzik | Carpetbagger :: The New York Times | Dec. 20
“I’m not a student of politics. I played a politician. I have no interest in politics.”

3. Anything Boys Can Do…
By Sharon Begley | The New Republic | Dec. 26
“Biology may play only a minor role in the math gender gap”

4. The Casual Herringbone Sportcoat
By Grant Harris | The Primer | November 2011
“Herringbone is one of the safest ways to go for guys who are wary of getting too busy with patterns.”

5. Why Mozart Rocks So Hard. Artistic Genius Explained
By Megan Erickson | Big Think | Dec. 20
“Why is ‘The Magic Flute’ so enduring, while other classical compositions have been forgotten?”

6. Colleges and suicide threats: when to call home?
By Justin Pope | Associated Press | Dec. 26
“The issue of when colleges should notify parents their adult children may be suicidal remains fraught with legal, medical and ethical dilemmas. College policies, state laws and professional codes of conduct vary widely – and occasionally conflict.”

7. Birds of a Feather
By C. Claiborne Ray | Q&A :: The New York Times | June 2009
“How do birds know which species they are? That is, how do they recognize one another so they can flock together?”

8. Pakistan: The New Radicals
By Oliver Englehart | Activate :: Al Jazeera | October 2011
“Ali Abbas travels around Pakistan tackling fanaticism, but can he make a difference?”

9. This Party’s Blowin’ Up
By Forrest Wickman | Explainer :: Slate | Dec. 13
“Why do we celebrate with balloons?”

10. Chanel No. 5
Witness :: BBC News | May 24
“In 1921 the most famous perfume ever, was launched in France.”

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TUNES

Tonight I’m spending some time with the blues, specifically with the Texas Blues Café. Check out the line-up and then listen here.

1. Rob Paparozzi — She’s Too Good For Me
2. WSNB — True Love
3. Mr. TBA — Dirty Dog
4. Pat Green — Somewhere Between Texas & Mexico
5. Daddy Long Legs — Use Me
6. Gary Moore — Still Got The Blues For You
7. Bob Segar — Come to Papa
8. Tinsley Ellis — Grow a Pair
9. Kevin Ball — On the Streets of Mexico
10. Coco Montoya — Same Dog
11. Stevie Ray Vaughan — Superstition
12. The Homemade Jamz Blues Band — Hard Headed Woman
13. Rick Fowler — Walk Softly