Weekend Reading

  • Unexpected Life Lessons from the Gym
    Now there’s a title I never thought I’d type. It’s been bang on a year since I started regularly going to training at AG Fitness and it’s been nearly 10 months since I upped my sessions to three times a week.
    I love Abba! A great write up of the wee gym I go to.

  • A hiker in the Cascades thought she would die in a snowstorm. But a stranger was looking out for her.
    Just before reaching its northern terminus at the Canadian border, the Pacific Crest Trail runs through the Glacier Peak Wilderness, an unforgiving stretch of rugged timberland in Washington state’s Cascade Range.
    Faith in humanity restored.

  • How A Dog Could Stop The Global Spread Of Disease
    Several years ago, British entomologist Steve Lindsay landed at an American airport and was immediately struck by all the furry creatures walking around the baggage claim area. Recent studies have found that people carrying malaria release a signature scent.
    Dogs are ace. Fact.

  • Trees ordered to pick all that shit up
    Following a wild night during which they waved their branches in the air as if they just did not care, the trees have left the country covered in debris which they expect others to clear up.
    Damn right. Messy fuckers!

  • “My official resignation from slimming by committee”
    Me and food, relationship status: complicated.
    I’ve never gone to a slimming class of any description but I have been tempted. Glad I’ve never succumbed.

  • A Growing Number of People Are Getting Rich Selling T-shirts Online
    Nearly every night after dinner for eight straight months, Glen Zubia brewed a cup of coffee, turned on heavy metal music, and made T-shirts. On Tuesdays and Wednesdays he designed in Adobe Illustrator.
    Gig economy? Work hard and reap the rewards?

  • Ross Edgley sets record for round Great Britain swim
    An adventurer from Grantham has become the first person to swim 1,780-miles around Great Britain. Ross Edgley, 33, was joined by 300 swimmers for the last mile before he arrived in Margate at about 09:00 GMT.
    Nutter. Well done!

  • Solitary bees

    Most bees are not part of a hive.

  • Can you prevent osteoporosis?
    Completely preventing osteoporosis isn’t as straightforward as we might hope and can never be guaranteed. However, we can all make ourselves more aware of what causes osteoporosis, our own risk of developing osteoporosis, and what we can do to help our bones stay stronger for longer.
    As I get older, these are the things I consider. Great article.

  • Analyzing Lego Porn, the Fetish That Will Ruin Your Childhood
    “If something exists, there is porn of it:” Welcome to Rule 34, a weekly column in which Motherboard’s Samantha Cole lovingly explores the highly specific fetishes that can be found on the web. If you’ve thought of it, someone’s jerked off to it.
    I am so SO sorry. (not sorry enough to NOT link to this though!)

  • Benedict Cumberbatch is ‘sick of camomile tea being called tea’. Is he right?
    When is tea not tea? That is, inarguably, a question. According to the Sherlock actor and exceptionally unlikely sex symbol Benedict Cumberbatch, it’s when it comes in a fey little sachet and smells of newly mown lawn.
    I don’t ‘get’ tea in any form so I’ll leave it to you to decide.

  • Researchers created an artificial society to find the causes of religious conflict
    To understand religious warfare, you could study the hundreds of historical or ongoing world conflicts that center on religion. Or you could program an AI to mimic human psychology and generate artificial societies, and then run it millions of times under different variables.
    Religion. A lot of good bits, but the bad bits are truly horrific.

  • Life’s Little Luxury
    When a few years ago I decided to write a book about charm, I began asking friends and acquaintances if they could name five people in contemporary public life—in show business, television journalism, politics, sports—they thought charming. None could do it. Some couldn’t name one.
    I am well mannered but wouldn’t say I was charming.

  • Party for one: why are so many of the greatest love songs about masturbation?
    It is a truth universally acknowledged that Carly Rae Jepsen is incapable of putting out a bad song – from Call Me Maybe via Run Away With Me via Cut to the Feeling (seriously, all of them) to her new single, Party for One.
    All by myseeelllfff…. hang on..
  • Do you love or loathe coffee? Your genes may be to blame.
    A warm cup of coffee is a necessary part of the morning routine for millions of people around the world. And as the end of daylight saving time messes yet again with our sleep patterns, plenty of people in the U.S. may reach for an extra cup or two to power through the drowsiness.

  • How Bill Gates Aims to Save $233 Billion by Reinventing the Toilet
    Bill Gates thinks toilets are a serious business, and he’s betting big that a reinvention of this most essential of conveniences can save a half million lives and deliver $200 billion-plus in savings.
    A lot of poo-pooing of this article… but at least he’s doing something.

  • The Problem With Being Perfect
    When the psychologist Jessica Pryor lived near an internationally renowned university, she once saw a student walking into a library holding a sleeping bag and a coffee maker. She’s heard of grad students spending 12 to 18 hours at a time in the lab.
    Part of my counselling uncovered ‘perfectionism’ as a trait of mine. So, basically, this (kinda).

  • People magazine names Idris Elba 2018’s Sexiest Man Alive
    The British actor says the honor has given him a boost of self-confidence. “I was like, ‘Come on, no way. Really?'” he told the magazine. “Looked in the mirror, I checked myself out.
    *immediately subscribes to People magazine*

  • David Attenborough has betrayed the living world he loves
    Knowingly creating a false impression of the world: this is a serious matter. It is more serious still when the BBC does it, and yet worse when the presenter is “the most trusted man in Britain”.
    Harsh take perhaps? My reading of this is Sir David wants to inspire wonder so we WILL want to take care of the world better, not depress and scare us into apathy?

  • The Don of Trumpery
    synonyms • cheesy, crappy, cut-rate, el cheapo, junky, lousy, rotten, schlocky, shoddy, sleazy, trashy Making fun of other people’s names is one of the lowest forms of humor. But naming can also be an art.
    Is it really this simple (I mean, HE is but.. oh yeah also, apologies for the Trump article but he’s really hard to avoid these days).

  • The cult of creativity is making us less creative
    You may have noticed that creativity is all the rage—and not just among artists. American culture, and indeed the world, has become obsessed with manufacturing creative kids, who will turn into inventive workers, who will then become the innovative leaders we need in these rapidly-changing times.
    Internet is good for some many things. Overwhelming any hobby is not one of them.

  • We Could All Use a Little More Chindogu, the Japanese Art of Useless Inventions
    A little bit Dada, a little bit “only sold on television,” intentionally useless inventions called Chindogu look like a bunch of plastic junk at first glance, but there’s more to it than that. And they’re not quite altogether useless.

  • What if the Placebo Effect Isn’t a Trick?
    The Chain of Office of the Dutch city of Leiden is a broad and colorful ceremonial necklace that, draped around the shoulders of Mayor Henri Lenferink, lends a magisterial air to official proceedings in this ancient university town.
    Amazing how much we still don’t know about our brains.

  • How Dad’s Stresses Get Passed Along to Offspring
    A stressed-out and traumatized father can leave scars in his children. New research suggests this happens because sperm “learn” paternal experiences via a mysterious mode of intercellular communication in which small blebs break off one cell and fuse with another.
    Makes note to meditate more often.

  • An Incredible Video of What It’s Like to Orbit the Earth for 90 Minutes
    This is easily the most awe-inspiring and jaw-dropping thing I’ve seen in months. In its low Earth orbit ~250 miles above our planet, the International Space Station takes about 90 minutes to complete one orbit of the Earth.
    I don’t often change the order of this list but it’s worth taking some time to watch some of this. Mesmerising. We are so so in-significant in the grand scheme of things. Let’s all just get along!