Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Latino voting power / Fish pedicures / Sinan, the starchitect / Richard Nixon’s five wars / The end of ‘Mad Men’

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.

1. Latino Growth Not Fully Felt at Voting Booth
By Adam Nagourney | The New York Times | June 9
“Latinos are not registering or voting in numbers that fully reflect their potential strength, leaving Hispanic leaders frustrated and Democrats worried as they increase efforts to rally Latino support.”

2. Check Out All These Awesome Interpretations of the Old Twitter Logo
By Jesus Diaz | Gizmodo | June 10
“The new Twitter logo is anything you want it to be if you are a genius illustrator like Ape Lad.”

3. Baghdad Spa Offers Fish Pedicures
By Kay Johnson | The Huffington Post | June 10
“Dozens of beauty salons, cosmetic surgery centers and other enterprises have sprung up to cash in on war-weary Iraqis looking for pampering.”

4. Life returning to normal on Giglio Island after Costa Concordia
By Carolyn Lyons | The Los Angeles Times | June 10
“Giglio, a tiny vacation island off the Tuscany coast, is dotted with charming villages, clean beaches, quiet accommodations and waterside trattorias.”

5. Tracking Turkey’s First Starchitect
By Andrew Ferren | The New York Times | June 8
“Sinan (circa 1490-1588) was chief architect and civil engineer of the Ottoman Empire, working when the empire was at its apogee; his employers, Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent and his heirs, were the most powerful men on earth.”

6. 40 years after Watergate, Nixon was far worse than we thought
By Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward | The Washington Post | June 8
“What was Watergate? It was Nixon’s five wars.”

7. As army grows, a unit highlights the challenges
By Kathy Gannon | Associated Press | June 10
“No one denies the Afghan National Army has an equipment problem. President Hamid Karzai says he is disturbed by problems such as the helmet shortage. The U.S. is providing the army with new, lighter helmets, but not all the soldiers have them.”

8. America’s Last Prisoner of War
By Michael Hastings | Rolling Stone | June 7
“Three years ago, a 23-year-old soldier walked off his base in Afghanistan and into the hands of the Taliban. Now he’s a crucial pawn in negotiations to end the war. Will the Pentagon leave a man behind?”

9. ‘Mad Men’ Creator Matthew Weiner Reflects on the Season So Far
By Dave Itzkoff | Arts Beat :: The New York Times | June 10
“What are the long-term marital prospects for Megan and Don Draper? Will we ever see Peggy Olson again? How is everyone at the office coping with the sad fate of Lane Pryce?”

10. 12 Coolest Ridley Scott Moments
By Keith Staskiewicz | Entertainment Weekly | June 8
“Popping an alien through a chest; putting a hammer to Big Brother; revving up the stakes for ‘Thelma and Louise’; and more gems from the ‘Prometheus’ director”

**************

TUNES

My soundtrack for today included:
1. GIVE A DEMONSTRATION (Grant Phabao remix) Big Daddy Kane, Conne Price and the Keystones
2. BACK TO THE HOTEL N2Deep
3. IT WAS A GOOD DAY Ice Cube
4. SMOOTH Tha Dogg Pound
5. BE FAITHFUL Crooklyn Clan & Fatman Scoop
6. NASTY GIRL Avery Storm, Jagged Edge, Nelly, P. Diddy & The Notorious B.I.G.
7. NAS’ ANGELS Nas & Pharrell Williams
8. MO MONEY MORE PROBLEMS Mase, Puff Daddy & The Notorious B.I.G.
9. HEAD SPRUNG LL Cool J
10. HEY MAMA Black Eyed Peas

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Costa Concordia a personal disaster / Russians reach Antarctic lake / Father/son presidencies / Gingrich and Huckabee / Where does love come from?

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. The Flub Watch Never Stops for Obama’s Team
By Helene Cooper | The New York Times | Feb. 5
“In the rarefied world that is dedicated to getting Mr. Obama re-elected, the battle has never been viewed through the prism of how to beat Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum or Ron Paul. It has always been about Mitt Romney.”

2. Looking for love
By Karen Weintraub | The Boston Globe | Feb. 6
“Surveys also show that whom we fall in love with is largely influenced by who we are; our personality traits and values drive our choices.”

3. Life with Trig
By Sarah Palin | Newsweek | Feb. 6
“He’s nearing his fourth birthday. He has Down syndrome. And he greets every day with a round of applause.”

4. Mike Huckabee is Newt Gingrich’s new role model
By Jonathan Martin | Politico | Feb. 6
“Running a seat-of-his-pants campaign that was short on cash but long on one-liners, the former Baptist preacher enjoyed early 2008 success, hit a rough patch and then had what turned out to be a meaningless rebound when the race turned to his native South.”

5. Earth Station: The Afterlife of Technology at the End of the World
By Alexis Madrigal | The Atlantic | Feb. 6
“This is the story of one of the old, weird ties between Earth and space.”

6. Presidential Fathers and Sons
By Michael Medved | The Wall Street Journal | Feb. 6
“For the seventh consecutive election, the winning candidate will be either a privileged prince with an adored, powerful patriarch, or an up-from-nothing scrapper with no relationship with his biological dad.”

7. 10 Bright Ideas to Get You Through February
Innovations :: Scientific American | Feb. 6
“The Super Bowl is over and now we have to face an ugly reality. It’s February and we’re only one week in. With the hope of lifting your spirits, here are 10 examples of innovative thinking to remind you that better things are coming.”

8. Russians drill into previously untouched Lake Vostok below Antarctica
By Marc Kaufman | The Washington Post | Feb. 6
“It has taken the Russians more than 20 years to drill into the lake, operating in some of the most brutal weather conditions in the world.”

9. For Reporter, Cruise Ship Disaster Is A Local Story
By Sylvia Poggioli | NPR | Feb. 5
“Bad weather has thus far prevented salvage workers from pumping out the half-million gallons of fuel onboard. But the ship has already started polluting the shallow shoreline with leaks of some of the other toxic substances onboard — detergents, paints, solvents, chlorinated swimming pool water and more than 1,300 gallons of olive oil.”

10. Vincent Cassel: ‘You can’t escape from what you are’
By Elizabeth Day | The Guardian | Feb. 4
“The actor, trained ballet dancer, and husband of Monica Bellucci is a man of hidden depths. In his latest role, he plays an anarchic disciple of Sigmund Freud. ”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Her affair with JFK / Female sex drive / Style on the campaign trail / Artist faces Facebook millions / Jupiter’s moon / Miscarriage lawsuit after Costa Concordia

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.

1. Woman recounts her affair with JFK when she was 19
By Cynthia R. Fagen | The New York Post | Feb. 5
“Their sex was ‘varied and fun.’ He could be seductive and playful and sometimes ‘acted like he had all the time in the world. Other times, he was in no mood to linger.’ ”

2. Female Sex Drive Decline Tied To Hormones, Evolution
By Jennifer Abbasi | The Huffington Post | Feb. 1
“[R]elationship duration was a better predictor of sexual desire in women than both relationship and sexual satisfaction.”

3. Why Are We So Obsessed With the Presidential Candidates’ Style?
By Noreen Malone | The Cut :: New York Magazine | January 2012
“Middle-aged and older white men in business-formal attire don’t tend to be the objects of sartorial fascination.”

4. Graffiti artist David Choe set for Facebook windfall
BBC News | Feb. 3
“A U.S. graffiti artist who painted Facebook’s offices is set to become a multi-millionaire when the social network begins trading as a public company.”

5. Latino voters favor protecting the environment
By Sara Ines Calderon | NewsTaco | Feb. 2
Among the findings, “76% of Latino voters voiced support for maintaining environmental protections.”

6. Tiny volcanic moon controls Jupiter’s auroras
By Lisa Grossman | New Scientist | Feb. 3
“Sometimes the puppets control the puppeteer. It seems volcanic outbursts on Jupiter’s moon Io control brilliant auroras on its parent planet.”

7. Lana Del Rey and the new culture of failure
By Stephen Deusner | Salon | Feb. 2
“The controversial pop sensation is somehow more interesting for her spectacular flameouts than her music”

8. Costa Concordia Lawsuit: Passenger Sues Cruise Line Over Miscarriage
The Huffington Post | Feb. 5
“[H]er doctors claim the ‘intense psychological stress suffered both during the night-time evacuation and when her lifeboat smashed up against rocks as it headed for the nearby shore’ is to blame.”

9. The Virgin Father
By Benjamin Wallace | New York Magazine | Feb. 5
“Trent Arsenault has never had sex, but he’s the father of fifteen children — and counting. The more he antagonizes the FDA, and unnerves television audiences across America, the more his in-box is flooded with requests for his sperm.”

10. Top five regrets of the dying
By Susie Steiner | The Guardian | Feb. 1
“A nurse has recorded the most common regrets of the dying, and among the top ones is ‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’. What would your biggest regret be if this was your last day of life?”

**************

TUNES

My soundtrack for today included:
1. PUSH Sarah McLachlan
2. PURPLE RAIN Prince
4. NO ORDINARY LOVE Sade
5. TAKE MY BREATH AWAY Berlin
6. PERFECT GIRL Sarah McLachlan
7. MELTDOWN Lisa Gerrard & Pieter Bourke
8. CANDY PERFUME GIRL Madonna
9. #1 CRUSH Garbage
10. BABY DID A BAD, BAD THING Chris Isaak

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Advice for Facebook millionaires / New crocodile species / TV and iPad / The cruise liner treasure chest / Fall of Singapore

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.

1. Advice to new Facebook millionaires: take a breath
By Jennifer Hoyt Cummings | Reuters | Feb. 2
“The first thing the 1,000 or so new post-IPO Facebook millionaire employees might need: a reality check.”

2. Obama uses Jesus as justification for taxing the rich
By Talia Ralph | Global Post | Feb. 2
“At the annual National Prayer Breakfast, Obama said that his tax policy proposals are shaped by his religious beliefs.”

3. Enormous, shielded crocodile species discovered
By Josh Berlinger | Africa Emerges :: Global Post | Feb. 2
“A unique crocodile fossil is found to be that of a new, gargantuan species nicknamed ‘Shieldcroc’ ”

4. Blurring the Line Between iPad and TV
By Nick Wingfield | Gadgetwise :: The New York Times | Feb. 2
“[A] lot of Web video viewing is the entertainment equivalent of snacking — bite-sized sessions that last no more than a few minutes a day. … A San Francisco start-up called Remixation is trying to change that …”

5. Five Luxury Items You Will (Probably) Never Own
By Michael Carl | Carl’s Crush :: Vanity Fair | Feb. 2
“This list is all about things that will make you feel like a kid again — even if you’ll never get to own them.”

6. From shipwreck in Italy, a treasure now beckons
By Vanessa Gera | Associated Press | Feb. 2
“It may be just a matter of time before treasure hunters set their sights on the sunken spoils of the Costa Concordia, which had more than 4,200 people on board.”

7. This much I know: Tony Blair
By Tim Adams | The Observer | June 2011
“The envoy and politician, 58, on not being prime minister, reading the Qur’an every day and his personal wealth”

8. Fighting in the Fifth Dimension
Al Jazeera World | October 2011
“Innovations in technology are changing the tactics of modern-day conflict, turning the cyberworld into a new frontline.”

9. A Matter of Time
By C. Claiborne Ray | Q&A :: The New York Times | December 2011
“I just noticed that my cholesterol-lowering prescription says it should be taken at bedtime, and I have always taken it in the morning. Does this reduce its effectiveness? Why does time of day matter for a once-a-day medication?”

10. Fall of Singapore
Witness :: BBC News | February 2011
“The fall of Singapore was one of the most serious losses suffered by the Allies during World War II. One British survivor of that battle tells his story.”

**************

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. Wiser Time — Revolution 09
2. Midnight Blues Band — Mercury Blues
3. Susan Tedeschi — Theres A Break In The Road
4. Chris Juergensen — Long Time Wondering
5. Paul Thorn — Crutches
6. Tinsely Ellis — Left Of Your Mind
7. Rick Huckaby — Can’t Miss Kid
8. Chris Rea — Lone Star Boogie
9. Rob Allen — Rainbow Blues
10. Robert Earl Keen — That Buckin’ Song
11. George Thorogood — Boogie Chillun
12. Van Wilks — Long Way To Crawl
13. Mick Fleetwood Blues Band — Rollin’ Man, Bayou Queen
14. Creed Williams — Finally Down

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Cut back on non-friends / What Obama knew / Future of OWS / New treasures in Istanbul / Why do we yawn?

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. Unfriend Everyone
By Sam Biddle | Gizmodo | Jan. 20
“You have too many Facebook friends. You’re following too many people on Twitter. You’re connected to too many people who don’t care too much about you. Get rid of them. Get rid of all of them.”

2. Courts Moving Too Slow for April Primary Elections
By Ross Ramsey | The Texas Tribune | Jan. 20
“The Democratic and Republican political parties hold their state conventions June 7-9.”

3. Italy Finds a Heroic Foil for Its Scorned Captain
By Elisabetta Povoledo | The New York Times | Jan. 19
“Easily adapting to the national propensity for dualism, Italians have got themselves a hero to play against their antihero, a champion to their villain …”

4. Obama warned about skyrocketing debt before he took office
By Donovan Slack | Politico 44 :: Politico | Jan. 23
“Economic advisers warned President Obama before he took the oath of office that he would have to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to help right the economy and such spending could run up the highest national debt since World War II. …”

5. What Future for Occupy Wall Street?
By Michael Greenberg | The New York Review of Books | Feb. 9
“Occupy Wall Street’s expansion to many other cities seems to have been preordained, but at the time it caught even its most committed supporters off guard.”

6. After Being Stricken by Drought, Istanbul Yields Ancient Treasure
By Jennifer Pinkowski | The New York Times | Jan. 23
“In the last dig season alone, the archaeologists uncovered port walls, elaborate buildings, an enormous cistern, a Byzantine church and stone roads spanning more than 1,000 years of occupation.”

7. Too many tests? Routine checks getting second look
By Lauran Neergaard | Associated Press | Jan. 23
“The worry: If given too often, these tests can waste time and money, and sometimes even do harm if false alarms spur unneeded follow-up care. It begs the question: Just what should be part of my doctor’s visit?”

8. Confident Obama Knows Wild Cards Can Loom Large
By Jackie Calmes | The New York Times | Jan. 23
“Democrats are enjoying the show, though mindful that much could change in the nine months before Election Day — as it often has in Mr. Obama’s term, and not for the better. ”

9. This Much I Know: Robert Duvall
By Tony Horkins | The Observer | February 2010
“The Hollywood legend, 79, on football, Brando and the tango”

10. The Yawning Gap
By C. Claiborne Ray | Q&A :: The New York Times | June 2011
“Do people yawn when they are asleep? Why do they yawn in the first place?”