Quickies

Quickies: How to Tell Someone They Sound Racist, Draining the Swamp, and the Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid

  • The Futuristic Walkman of 1938 Wasn’t Very Portable – “Radio miniaturization was happening at a quick pace in the 1920s, and this was far from the only portable radio of the 1930s. But it’s a decent reminder that portability is and always has been relative. I, for one, think that the strap-radio actually looks pretty cool, even if it’s a bit impractical. And given the technological advances of the time, its size was probably as much for show as it was anything else.”
  • Teens can’t tell the difference between real and fake news, unsettling study reveals – “The ghost of Edward R. Murrow wept in the afterlife today as a Stanford University study revealed that 82 percent of middle-schoolers were unable to tell the difference between a legitimate news story and ‘sponsored content’ from an advertiser.”
  • The Strangest Calls to the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line – ” ‘This dad’s duty was to bathe the twin boys and thaw the turkey. The mom called and said, “I just went up stairs and there are my twin boys taking a bath with our turkey.” ‘ “
  • After Being Abandoned, This French Beach Resort Was Adopted by Artists – “Pirou-Plage’s story took another interesting twist when it started to attract artists in the 2000s. Street artists, painters, photographers, and filmmakers adopted the abandoned resort, and for the first time its houses were lively. In 2014, some Pirou inhabitants were featured in projects led by the famous French photographer and street artist JR, and filmmaker Agnès Varda. Word of mouth and media coverage spread the news: Pirou-Plage had become a cool place to go.”
  • Scientists Say Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid Made Earth’s Surface Act Like Liquid – “It’s worth noting that even though the rock behaved like liquid, Gulick says it remained solid. However, the materials were ‘either shocked or damaged so much that they’re able to temporarily lose their cohesion and move like a slow-moving fluid.’ Big questions remain about how that physical process actually works, he says.”
  • How to Drain the Swamp in 9 Easy Steps – “No one in the swamp can help you drain the swamp, because they are part of the swamp system that created the swamp in the first place. You need outsiders. But they also need to have the capacity and determination to drain this swamp. Build your team by going to a different, swampier swamp and recruiting some of its swamp people to come drain your swamp. Hey, that alternative swamp to your right looks like a good option!”
  • How to Fight With Your Relatives: A Handy, Bipartisan Guide – “Thanksgiving is a holiday that celebrates those two most American of things: eating with one’s family, and arguing with them. Why simply fill pie holes when you can tell someone you love to shut theirs?”
  • How to Tell Someone They Sound Racist – A classic video from Jay Smooth from eight years ago. Still relevant and full of good tips, especially right before the holiday.

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Mary

Mary

Mary Brock is a scientist who works on drugs you've hopefully never heard of. She enjoys cooking to Blue Grass music, messing with her cats, and hosting the Boston Skeptics' Book Club. She was born in the South but loves living in New England (despite the lack of chocolate chip pizza). Mary does not use Twitter and don't even try to follow her, because she is always looking over her shoulder.

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4 Comments

  1. November 23, 2016 at 12:35 pm —

    When I first read The Statement of Randolph Carter I was like, portable phone? Did those actually exist back in HPL’s day?

  2. November 23, 2016 at 6:49 pm —

    I remember the days when a portable computer was the size of a sewing machine. Here is one of the better known examples:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compaq_Portable

    • November 23, 2016 at 9:19 pm —

      I had one of those computers too!

      • November 25, 2016 at 5:34 pm —

        My dad used to have a Commodore 64. Yeah, everyone did. We kept ours until 1995.

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