May 1, 2014 / From the Editor, Uncategorized
Each Friday we compile a list of interesting links and articles our editors find from …
October 12, 2014
Some interesting factoids that might put history into new perspectives:
Your entire perception of history is totally whacked out, and we’re going to prove it. With the help of illustrious image manipulator AuntieMeme, we’re about to drop a history bomb of knowledge on all your asses. Real talk.
Ikea is now making furniture that you can put together without tools!
Ikea furniture seems like such a good deal, until you get it home and realize that you have to spend half a day or more building it. Ikea’s new Regissör line is an attempt to address this pain point. The company promises that its new bookshelf, cabinets, and coffee table can be constructed in a mere five minutes.
Jonathan Hiskes, a TOJ contributor, remembers “Exceptional Camp” in this article:
Each summer, Camp Roger roars with the fizzing energy of children. They hike, canoe, fish, swim, and tear through a vast Michigan forest in massive riotous Capture the Flag games, raising sand clouds that dust the undergrowth. As a 19-year-old counselor, I helped recreate the magic that made me fall in love with the place as a child. We led campouts, arranging sassafras branches into a teepee, showing our campers how a single match could ignite slender twigs into a sweet citrus blaze, soon hot enough to scorch their hot dogs. At the waterfront, we shoveled worms out of the soil, showing campers how to bait hooks, and, later, to grip the cool skin of a bluegill and release the barb from its lip. By mid-August I felt some degree of competency. If leading sing-alongs and cabin devotions still terrified me, campfires and fishing sessions were second nature.
How drones are changing the way we see the world:
Recently, it has been getting harder to disappear on this planet. A surveilling drone began passing over the remote forests of northeastern Nigeria earlier this year, tracking the separatist group Boko Haram, catching glimpses of hasty encampments and escapes along dirt trails. When the militants kidnapped 200 schoolgirls this spring, a camera in the sky captured a large group of girls, sitting together in a clearing. Soon after, the cameras captured a similar group of girls elsewhere in the forest. Each time, the girls were moved before they could be spotted again, or rescued. What was left was just a spooky afterimage, like the impression made on a photographic plate: The most famous missing people on the planet, for an instant at least, found.
TOJ editor Zachary Settle on Kendrick Lamar:
One of the more robust, detailed, and grounded theology projects popular culture has produced in the last few years comes from a seemingly unlikely source, which is perhaps why it has been so widely missed by theological analysis. Kendrick Lamar’s Good Kid M.A.A.D. City is a work of theological genius. On this, his third studio album, Lamar has fully caught his stride. And after the release of his new single, “i,” it seems that Lamar’s much anticipated fourth studio album will only pick up where Good Kid M.A.A.D City left off.
Blind people have four times more nightmares than sighted people:
A new Danish study shows that blind people have considerably more nightmares than people with normal sight and those who became blind later in life. It’s something that 41-year-old Heidi Andersen, who was born blind, can recognise. She is often plagued by nightmares and her sleep interrupted by fears of being hit by passing traffic, falling on the ground, and being followed.
A review of Left Behing at The Verge:
I’ll admit, I didn’t expect to walk out of a terrible Nicolas Cage movie thinking about theodicy. From the moment it was announced, I developed a morbid curiosity about the latest attempt at a film adaptation of Left Behind, the 1995 novel that kicked off a wildly popular series about the Christian Rapture. No matter how terrible they were, for a certain wave of evangelical, Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins’ novels were a cultural touchstone. They were part of a rich tradition of religiously charged science fiction, a ripped-from-the-headlines chronicle of the end of days “factually” based on close analysis (but creative interpretation) of the Bible. And the movie, I thought, could be campy enough to transcend its source material. So in a nearly empty Manhattan multiplex theater, I saw Left Behind on opening night.
Emory acquires unseen work from Flannery O’Connor:
A trove of Flannery O’Connor’s literary drafts, journals, letters and personal effects, long hidden from all but a few scholars, has been acquired by Emory University here and will soon be made available to the public, shedding new light on one of the most influential American writers of the postwar era.
A case against sports:
I gave up sports for the same reason I gave up politics and pornography. I was once in a political party, not because I felt any great affection for it, but because the aims of its chief opponent constitute a recipe for civilizational suicide. I still suspect as much, but I long ago became an Independent, because I concluded that associating myself with a political party was a moral act, or rather an immoral one, given the criminality, corruption, and prevarication engendered by its leaders.
Brian Curtis considers the “death” of baseball:
You know John Thorn. Official historian for Major League Baseball. Mustachioed guy in the Ken Burns documentary. I went to his big house upstate last week because Thorn wanted to show me something. It was evidence of a “lively corpse,” Thorn called it, “or fabulous invalid.” Let me explain. As you read this, someone somewhere is writing an article that claims baseball is dying. Or in decline. Or just plain irrelevant — having “fallen out of the national conversation,” as the New York Times put it last year. Baseball-is-dying articles always appear around playoff time. The writer gathers Nielsen ratings, listens to the moans of the game’s sages, and files a fresh obituary.
David A. Garner