Weekend Reading

  • Falling in Love with Words: The Secret Life of a Lexicographer
    We’re proud to feature “Hrafnkell,” the first chapter of Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries, by Kory Stamper. We are in an uncomfortably small conference room.
    Words are such wonderful, powerful, beautiful things, this sound like a joyous celebration of a book.

  • The Enduring, Anxious Appeal of Gray
    Looking back, I should have realized it sooner, this problem that I have. The only excuse I can give is that introspection often takes time, and it’s only slowly that one recognizes an obsession, though signs of it may appear everywhere.
    No. NOT 50 bloody shades. Reading this I realise that I have been fighting this too, largely by ordering a lime green sofa.

  • Why It’s so Important to Know About High-Functioning Depression
    Today, Bright Side would like to share a very important article with you. The subject here might not be all that uplifting, but it’s vitally important that as many people know about it as possible if we’re to make the world a better place.
    This ticks many boxes of how I have been, how I am, and how I will be in the future.

  • It took the inventor of the Rubik’s Cube a month to solve his own puzzle
    In 1974, Erno Rubik was a 29-year-old design professor who started fiddling around with a set of wooden blocks in the Budapest apartment he shared with his mother.
    I solved mine WITH A HAMMER!

  • George Saunders: what writers really do when they write
    A series of instincts, thousands of tiny adjustments, hundreds of drafts … What is the mysterious process writers go through to get an idea on to the page?
    Yes, I am STILL writing a book. Although my process is less mysterious and a lot more keyboard bashing based.

  • Why Scientists Are Worried About a Landslide No One Saw or Heard
    If a steep mountainside in a remote national park gives way and drops 200 million tons of rock into deep glacial water, will anyone hear? In the case of the massive landslide that fell into Taan Fjord, Alaska, the answer was no—and yes.
    The continued erosion of earth by humankind, article #3492267. Dear humans, we suck.

  • These Scientists Sent a Rocket to Mars for Less Than It Cost to Make “The Martian”
    On a rocket launched toward Mars. It was India’s first interplanetary mission, Mangalyaan, and a terrific gamble. Only 40 percent of missions sent to Mars by major space organizations — NASA, Russia’s, Japan’s, or China’s — had ever been a success.
    Amazing, stuff, amazing women, this should’ve had a lot more news coverage than it got.

  • Boston public schools map switch aims to amend 500 years of distortion
    A district will drop the Mercator projection, which physically diminished Africa and South America, for the Peters, which cut the developed world down to size.
    One for the West Wing fans!!

  • Can Probiotics Help Your Depression? What We Know, What We Don’t
    What if your psychiatrist prescribed yogurt and vegetables as an antidepressant?
    I think I’d be happier if they could prescribe pizza and bacon and ice cream but whatevs.

  • The General Who Went to War On Suicide
    On the evening of July 19, 2010, Major General Dana Pittard, the new commander of Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas, got a call from the base’s 24-hour duty officer. A SWAT team had been sent to the house of a young sergeant named Robert Nichols.
    We need more stories like these, more people like this. We should not be ashamed of our mental health.

  • A major New York hospital recommends Hanson, Missy Elliot, and Lynyrd Skynyrd for timing CPR
    Music can be a lifesaver—literally.
    Boooo to lack of pun related headlines: “The Rhythm of Life”?

  • The Onion Struggles to Lampoon Trump
    In January, 2013, Donald Trump’s special counsel, Michael Cohen, sent a letter to the Onion.

  • Creative and Practical Ways To Use LEGO Around the House (Without Stepping On Any!)
    For the last several decades, LEGO has been a standard toy staple found in pretty much every home that has kids (or nostalgic adults) in it. They were first created by a Danish carpenter named Ole Kirk Christiansen in 1934; since then, over 400 billion of the familiar plastic bricks have been made.
    Some of these are so obvious it hurts (no, not the standing on them bit). Coasters, lamps, ALL ON MY LIST.

  • Back in the Kitchen: A Reading List About Gender and Food
    I’m notoriously grumpy while grocery shopping. Once, my partner and I got into a fight in the Aldi parking lot because one of the eggs in our carton broke.
    Some good stuff in here. I need to get back to cooking more.

  • A Court Will Decide if a GIF Can Be Considered a ‘Deadly Weapon’
    On Monday, a suspect faced federal charges in a Dallas County court for allegedly sending a strobing GIF that triggered a seizure in Kurt Eichenwald, a Newsweek writer with epilepsy, late last year. Light-induced seizures have been fought with lawsuits and TV bans in the past.
    Dear time traveller, yes, this is a thing.

  • What It’s Like To Live With Borderline Personality Disorder
    I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder at the age of 14. Relationships feel impossible, my brain never stops running and my stress is magnified. For the first time in my life, I’m sharing my story of borderline personality disorder with the public.
    Once again, we need more pieces like this. More normalising of these things, more understanding.

  • How to Small Talk if You Hate Small Talk
    I have two speeds when it comes to small talk: “Tell me your life story!” or a nice, blank stare. It depends on my mood, how much I’ve had to drink and how much work I’ve just left behind on my desk.
    I’m brilliant at small talk after the fact.

  • How a Dictionary Got Into the Marriage Equality Debate
    It was Friday, morning-break time, and I was not just tired; I was beat, wiped, whipped, laid out, done in, dead. Usually during morning break, I got up for a bit of a stretch, walked around, refilled my coffee.
    Words are such wonderful, powerful, beautiful thi…. ohh I’ve done this already

  • The scents in your body wash, chicken stock and canned drink all come from one company
    What’s the first thing you do upon waking up? If your answer’s brushing your teeth or taking a shower, chances are you’re already using a product developed by Givaudan.
    OK, this is just weird.

  • Becoming ‘Everyone’s Little Sister’ to Deal With Sexism
    When I entered the office for my interview, I saw every head in the glass-enclosed conference room pop up and look over at me.
    FFS it’s 2017.

  • 48 Incredibly Short, Clean Jokes That Are Actually Funny.
    Need a wicked short joke to tell that anybody can hear? Below are 48 of the best clean jokes. Short and sweet. Check them out!
    This is so far up my alley that … ohhh wait, CLEAN jokes.. ok, nevermind..

  • How TV Opening Titles Got to Be So Damn Good
    A sharply dressed silhouette plummets through a canyon of advertisements. A troubled man chomps on a cigar as he drives along the New Jersey Turnpike. Gauzy portraits of broken, poisoned people overlay images of the polluted landscape they call home.
    The rise of good TV mirrored by some memorable opening titles (anyone else get the reference in the quote above?)

  • Amazon, the world’s most remarkable firm, is just getting started
    Amazon is an extraordinary company. The former bookseller accounts for more than half of every new dollar spent online in America. It is the world’s leading provider of cloud computing. This year Amazon will probably spend twice as much on television as HBO, a cable channel.
    Easy to forget just how massive and influential this company is.