Friday, October 23rd, 2015


With Friends Like These

Friendships change over time along with our interpersonal wants and needs. In The Atlantic, Julie Beck takes an interesting look at how friendships change in adulthood; and the benefits and costs of moving many friendly interactions online. "The voluntary nature of friendship makes it subject to life's whims in a way other relationships aren't." I've been hanging out with pretty much the same group of guys since I was a little kid; our bond is bolstered by a common history and a shared inability to make new friends.

+ Hopes and Fears: Does being self-deprecating help or harm you socially? (Who am I to say?)


Dios Mio

The strongest hurricane ever recorded. That's how forecasters are describing Hurricane Patricia, a storm that could cause catastrophic damage when it hits Mexico's Pacific coast.


Weekend Reads

"Unlike diseases that attack the body, dementia, by degrading the physiology of the brain, induces an altered state of consciousness, a consciousness both like and unlike our own, both a mirror and a mask." In The Guardian, Dasha Kiper on the deviousness of dementia.

+ George Saunders in The New Yorker: My Writing Education: A Time Line.

+ And from Refinery 29: Sex, Drugs, And V-Neck Tees: Inside The Cult Of American Apparel. (People rip American Apparel for misogyny. But let's not forget their victimization of husky guys. That ain't no extra large...)


This is What Hurts

In our latest episode of What Hurts, we're keepin' it unreal with a look at virtual reality and a unique take on the week's top and bottom news. Phil Bronstein and I been getting a great reaction and some solid feedback. And now we have a new What Hurts homepage where you can listen and subscribe to the podcast. And we're taking off the beta label, so please spread the word.


Eleven Hours in a Tin Pan

Three things are clearly torture. 1. Waterboarding. 2. Drawing and quartering. 3. Watching all eleven hours of the House committee grilling of Hillary Clinton on Thursday. If you just want to dip your toe in to see what it felt like, here's the Benghazi hearing in 3 minutes. (I held out for about 1:50. See how much you can take.)

+ I generally try to avoid the sport of politics in this newsletter. But in this case, liberal and conservative media seem to agree. (And that's definitely news...)

+ Vox: 9 questions about Benghazi you were too embarrassed to ask.


Frank Talk on Campus

Things have been tense on the campuses of many South African universities since earlier this year when students complained about "a lack of racial transformation." But a planned tuition hike pushed things over the edge. From PRI: After massive protests, South Africa freezes tuition hikes.


Family Trip

"On the train through Macedonia, I ask Ahmad if he thinks he will ever return to Syria. 'Inshallah,' he says: God willing. Then he turns his head and looks out the window, trying to hide the tears he is wiping off his cheek." A NYT Interactive piece: A Family Swept Up in the Migrant Tide.

+ Quartz: Syrian refugees are traveling across the Arctic Circle to Europe. (And it turns out that it's a journey that often requires a bicycle.)


I’m Coming to Join You Honey

Redd Foxx and Andy Kaufman have something in common. According to the NYT, they are both about to be turned into holograms that will go on tour and once again perform in front of live audiences. (This could be a plot to find out once and for all if Andy Kaufman is really dead. Because if he's alive, there's no way he can resist emerging long enough to punch these tour promoters in the face.)


Jack Offloads Stock

In an effort to boost morale (and maybe to make other CEOs look bad), Jack Dorsey announced that he'd be giving $200 million of his Twitter stock back to employees. (Now I feel bad for thinking about putting my Tweets behind a paywall.)


Bottom of the News

LA Times: "For years you've been telling your friends, family, co-workers and anyone who will listen that you're addicted to cheese. It's a part of every meal or snack, and you think about it constantly. According to a new study from the University of Michigan, cheese crack is a real thing." (I am offended by the comparison of cheese to crack. Crack doesn't melt nearly as evenly over an English Muffin.)

+ A yoga class in Seattle is doing whatever it can to welcome people from all backgrounds. Except white people

+ This one is for my son. Yes, your friends at school were right. There is going to be a new Harry Potter. This time it's not a book, it's a play.