December 22nd – The Day’s Most Fascinating News

Paying for Sex

We’ve read endless stories about the stubborn continuation of the gender pay gap. But here’s a gender-related economic story you might not know anything about: A lot of products marketed towards women and girls cost more money — even though the only differences are usually a color and some slightly different packaging. “The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs compared nearly 800 products with female and male versions — meaning they were practically identical except for the gender-specific packaging — and uncovered a persistent surcharge for one of the sexes.” It turns out
being in the pink can lead you to being in the red. Or why you should always buy the men’s version of almost anything


Watch Your Six

If you’ve been trying to get pregnant via in vitro fertilization, here’s a suggestion based on a recent study: Keep trying. From the NYT: “Nearly two-thirds of women undergoing I.V.F. will have a child by the sixth attempt, suggesting that persistence can pay off.”


The Tribe is Speaking

Backed by U.S. airstrikes, “allied tribesmen” in Iraq are getting close to taking back Ramadi from ISIS.

+ Al-Shabaab militants in Kenya usually follow a familiar script. They pull over a bus. They single out all the Christians on the bus. And then they spray them with bullets. But this time, “the Muslim passengers, who were mostly women, told the Islamic militants to kill them all or leave them alone.”


Rocket Protector

Elon Musk’s SpaceX successfully landed a reusable rocket in Florida. It’s a promising development for space exploration. And it made for a hell of a Vine. (Coming soon. The inside story of the Florida man who hasn’t seen his cat since Elon’s rocket landed back on Earth.)

+ Related: The basketball dunk of the year.


Unnatural Disaster

“I don’t know who’ll help us now. Everything in our lives has been left in the mud.” In Shenzhen, rescuers are still searching for survivors of a massive landslide that “engulfed dozens of buildings.” Maybe landslide isn’t the right word. It was really more like a collapse of a massive mountain of construction debris.

+ Vice: Grim video shows huge waves of industrial waste that have left scores missing in China.


Double Visionary

“A classic CEO should have his hands in everything: financials, operations, personne. But if you’re splitting your time between the two companies, it becomes much more about who the people are around you.” The WSJ goes behind the scenes to find out why there are barely enough hours in the day for Jack Dorsey to run both Twitter and Square. (When the stock prices are going up, this makes for a feel-good story. When the stock prices plummet, it’s pretty confounding.)


I Don’t Think You Can Scandal This

Yesterday, we recounted some of the most optimistic news about 2015 (apologies again for that). Today we return to form as The Wrap wraps up the 2015 in scandals from Bill Cosby to Charlie Sheen to Rachel Dolezal.

+ FastCo with the inaugural edition of the Unicorn Naughty List, which, sadly, sounds a lot dirtier than it is.


Minders Keepers

Although the reasons are unclear, a series of longitudinal studies has shown that there is a strong correlation between having a high IQ and living a longer life. I’m still holding out hope that the latitudinal studies will prove otherwise…


Gram Bam Thank You Ma’am

The Next Web attempts to explain what the most popular posts on Instagram in 2015 say about us. I’m pretty sure they say that being famous and attractive can be helpful.

+ The Economist: Our ten most popular explainers from 2015.


Bottom of the News

With all the year-end news round-ups, I thought I’d try to save everyone some time. So I condensed the entire year of news into one image.

The five most dangerous words when it comes to your productivity: Let’s grab coffee and chat.

+ Some people are really into detangling yarn. Like, really into it.

+ And here’s a headline you might not have seen coming: Nicolas Cage Returns Stolen Dinosaur Skull to Mongolia.

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