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Inspired by a true story

The articles behind the movies:
Coyote Ugly trailer
The Bling Ring trailer
Adaptation trailer
Saturday Night Fever trailer
The Fast and the Furious trailer
Blue Crush trailer
The Insider trailer
The Perfect Storm trailer
Shattered Glass trailer
Argo trailer
Fast Times at Ridgemont High trailer [more inside]
posted by Grandysaur on Nov 25, 2017 - 33 comments

Coders Of The World, Unite!

“Recognizing these difficulties, a growing number of activists within the industry are developing a different plan. Their insight is as compelling as it is counterintuitive: the best people to confront the power of the tech giants may be their own employees. First, they want to teach their colleagues to see that tech work is work, even though it doesn’t take place in a factory. Then, they want to organise them, so that rank-and-file workers can begin to bring political transparency and democratic accountability to the platforms they have worked to build. Call them the Tech Left.“ - For decades, tech companies promised to make the world better. As that dream falls apart, disillusioned insiders are trying to take back control. By Moira Weigel for The Guardian.
posted by The Whelk on Nov 2, 2017 - 26 comments

A Profile of John McPhee

A very nice New York Times profile of the legendary John McPhee
posted by OmieWise on Sep 28, 2017 - 30 comments

Lillian Ross 1918-2017

Lillian Ross, who became known as the consummate fly-on-the-wall reporter in a six-decade career at The New Yorker, died on Wednesday in Manhattan. She was 99. [more inside]
posted by ALeaflikeStructure on Sep 20, 2017 - 16 comments

No magic bullet

My Father, the Werewolf
When I was a kid, my Dad taught me all about werewolves. Little did I know he was preparing me to understand his depression.
posted by Joe in Australia on Sep 17, 2017 - 18 comments

They're wagon camels

Lessons from camels
A ten-day camel trek through the South Australian outback. With your parents.
posted by Joe in Australia on Sep 3, 2017 - 12 comments

I want to be able to remember those stories and enjoy them while I can

The Heartbreaking Story Of A Man And His ‘68 Camaro - David Obuchowski
I ask him if his dad still knew about the Camaro in the end. He says he did, and they’d reminisce about it often.
“Oh, he’d get a kick out of it. We’d get a kick out of it when we’d talk about it. I’d say, ‘Remember, dad, when I was in the service, and I heard from my friends you were cruisin’ Main in it?’ And he’d laugh.”

posted by CrystalDave on Jul 20, 2017 - 5 comments

If You Don't Buy This Magazine, We'll Commit Massive Securities Fraud

Can Anyone Repair the National Lampoon? Vanity Fair dives deep into the sordid (and ongoing) fate of the National Lampoon brand – a story that begins with Kenney, O'Donoghue, and the vanguard of 1970s comedy, and ends with multiple FBI raids, the 'Madoff of the Midwest', and a long, desultory history of tasteless movies and tie-ins.
posted by workingdankoch on Jul 10, 2017 - 38 comments

America’s Future Is Texas SL New Yorker

With right-wing zealots taking over the legislature even as the state’s demographics shift leftward, Texas has become the nation’s bellwether.
posted by Bee'sWing on Jul 3, 2017 - 27 comments

"There has to be tension. There has to be an adversary."

There are plenty of writing guides by the old guard, so how about a master class in writing narrative nonfiction with Susan Orlean, Isabel Wilkerson, Jacqui Banaszynski, Katherine Boo, Lillian Ross, Adrian Nicole LeBlanc, Sonia Nazario and many more women journalists. [more inside]
posted by not_the_water on Jun 12, 2017 - 16 comments

And he raved on, and I saw that his tears were not only for himself

The Love and Terror of Nick Cave - GQ But what about the other songs, the ones where the anger or disdain or sarcasm or malevolence or aggression dominates, the ones that have traditionally been performed by what Cave will describe to me, somewhat wryly, as the “deranged preacher”? How can that guy possibly turn up now?
posted by CrystalDave on Apr 29, 2017 - 27 comments

Who would pay $5 to support a website?

Medium is now selling monthly subscriptions
posted by beukeboom on Mar 22, 2017 - 33 comments

This Article Won’t Change Your Mind

In one particularly potent example of party trumping fact, when shown photos of Trump’s inauguration and Barack Obama’s side by side, in which Obama clearly had a bigger crowd, some Trump supporters identified the bigger crowd as Trump’s. When researchers explicitly told subjects which photo was Trump’s and which was Obama’s, a smaller portion of Trump supporters falsely said Trump’s photo had more people in it.
The facts on why facts alone can’t fight false beliefs
posted by AFABulous on Mar 18, 2017 - 65 comments

Well isn't this the pits

Lucky Peach likely to close in May "Lucky Peach, the six-year-old indie food media outfit from writer Peter Meehan and restaurant mogul and Momofuku founder Dave Chang, is going through a major upheaval. The entire staff learned on Monday afternoon that their employment would end in May." The magazine won nine James Beard awards — including Publication of the Year in 2016 — and a National Magazine Award for General Excellence. [more inside]
posted by CrystalDave on Mar 14, 2017 - 20 comments

Mise en abyme.... mise en Fieri

Is there something more behind the bleached hair, tattoos, rock n' roll, and diner food of Guy Fieri? "True things have depth" answers Fieri in a longform piece from Vice. [more inside]
posted by zenon on Mar 8, 2017 - 49 comments

Revenge of the Lunch Lady

How an unassuming bureaucrat outsmarted Jamie Oliver and pulled off an honest-to-god miracle in one of America's unhealthiest cities. One West Virginia turns her school lunch program around; plus a brief history of school lunches in America featuring the National Frozen Pizza Institute.
posted by Hypatia on Feb 13, 2017 - 71 comments

Talia is right here and says 'awful, I can’t breathe'

Quantity of Care Pt 1: A Lost Voice (Seattle Times investigative report) Talia Goldenberg emerged from the fog of anesthesia. The 23-year-old wiggled her toes. She wagged her feet. Good signs for a patient coming out of spinal surgery.
But as the anesthesia faded in Talia’s system, she realized that not everything was perfect, despite the confident assurances of her surgical team. [more inside]
posted by CrystalDave on Feb 10, 2017 - 39 comments

The Musical that (almost) Fell to Earth

When Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist Michael Cunningham got a call from someone claiming to be David Bowie, he thought it was a friend pulling a prank. He didn’t know he was about to be launched into a yearlong collaboration on a musical involving space aliens, mariachi bands, and an imaginary trove of unreleased songs by Bob Dylan. Here, for the first time, is the story of their unfinished show—and what it’s like to work alongside a bona fide pop genius.
posted by
I_Love_Bananas on Jan 11, 2017 - 24 comments

Hate in America is alive and well

The LGBT movement, like every other battle for civil rights, is not a simple, straightforward march toward liberation. In the coming years, as being labeled a racist or bigot is falsely equated with acting out of racism or bigotry, as evidence of hate and its terrible outcomes is clouded by self-interested suspicion and denial — it’s worth remembering that in 2016, love did not trump hate. A Buzzfeed piece uses the 1998 Matthew Shepard murder as the focal point of a longform piece on how far we've come - or not.
posted by AFABulous on Jan 4, 2017 - 17 comments

"Neo-Sithism and Neo-Imperialism are the same ideology."

Leia Organa: A Critical Obituary
Leia Organa, the politician and revolutionary who led the defeat of the Galactic Empire, died after a short illness. She was 60 years old. Hers was a life laced with controversy concerning everything from her tactics to her very ancestry, but her intelligence, commitment to the Republican cause, and place at the heart of the Rebellion, and later the Resistance against Neo-Imperialism, remains the indisputable core of her legacy.
posted by Faint of Butt on Dec 28, 2016 - 32 comments

6,944km, 17 restaurants, many stories

Chop Suey Nation (Globe & Mail) - Ann Hui
I became determined to find Huang, to understand how she ended up running a Chinese restaurant on Fogo Island. I wanted to know how she wound up there alone. So I set out a plan: to drive across the country, visiting as many small-town Chinese restaurants as possible. I’d start on the West Coast, where the earliest wave of Chinese settlers began arriving in 1858. From there, I would make my way east across a 2 ½ -week period, roughly tracing the path of the railway. [more inside]
posted by CrystalDave on Dec 26, 2016 - 32 comments

Cahokia was bigger than Paris—then it was completely abandoned.

"The more they dug, the more obvious it became that this was no ordinary place. The structures they excavated were full of ritual objects charred by sacred fires. We found the remains of feasts and a rare earthen structure lined with yellow soils. Baires, Baltus, and their team had accidentally stumbled on an archaeological treasure trove linked to the city's demise. The story of this place would take us back to the final decades of a great city whose social structure was undergoing a radical transformation." Annalee Newitz for Ars Technica: Finding North America's lost medieval city [more inside]
posted by amnesia and magnets on Dec 21, 2016 - 31 comments

Homer and Harold

In 1924, Connecticut prosecutor Homer Cummings saved accused murderer Harold Israel from a death sentence. Their shared story didn't end there.
posted by mudpuppie on Dec 20, 2016 - 17 comments

An Enemy of the Kremlin Dies in London

A longform article from The Atlantic: Who killed Alexander Perepilichny?
posted by Joe in Australia on Dec 12, 2016 - 5 comments

Well jel

Businessweek have published their annual list of the stories they are most jealous of in other titles. [more inside]
posted by garlicsmack on Dec 9, 2016 - 12 comments

overwhelmed by all the ancient color

How a workshop uses digital technology to craft perfect copies of imperilled art: The Factory of Fakes [more inside]
posted by Joe in Australia on Nov 27, 2016 - 3 comments

a uniform chorus of desperation

"In 2015 alone, Women on Web*, the Dutch not-for-profit, received more than 600 emails from US women looking for a way to end their own pregnancies. (The group does not send abortion drugs to the US, because the US does not outright ban abortion.) Women on Web agreed to share scores of these emails with the Guardian, providing an unprecedented window into the lives of women who feel they have no other option but to end their pregnancies themselves." [more inside]
posted by amnesia and magnets on Nov 22, 2016 - 14 comments

it's twice as hard to swallow when you know precisely what the pill is

Broadly takes a deep dive into the racist and sexist history of keeping birth control side effects secret. The Atlantic follows up with an examination of the different stakes of male and female birth control: "...it makes perfect sense that women would be willing to endure all kinds of side effects in exchange for, essentially, freedom. Being able to control whether and when they become pregnant has opened up so many opportunities for women, opportunities that men already had greater access to by virtue of being men. Men's careers, men's bodies, men's control over their own lives, have never been at stake in the same way."
posted by amnesia and magnets on Nov 2, 2016 - 49 comments

American gun violence and legislation in the "shelter in place" age

We teach our students that the first move in an argument is often one of definition: gun as tool. Gun as "objective correlative" (T. S. Eliot) of "liberty" (Wayne LaPierre). Gun as "right" that, if left "unexercised," will be lost (opencarry.org). While running for president, Jeb Bush argued that our country is a gun when he tweeted a photo of his engraved handgun with a one-word caption, "America." A gun is a little cannon for killing that we've sentimentalized and normalized. [American Weather]
posted by amnesia and magnets on Oct 20, 2016 - 46 comments

Who Tells Their Story?

"For Asian-American actors, there is a persistent fear of being left out of the conversation entirely, since “diversity” has often been conflated with black representation only. As Hamilton star Leslie Odom Jr. put it, “In America, things get boiled down into a black and white issue, but I want to see stories about Asian people, I want to see stories about trans people — diversity is not just a black and white issue. … We’ve still got some work to do when you talk about real diversity.” (Buzzfeed longform)
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Sep 29, 2016 - 16 comments

Humans are monsters

A Visit to The Dead Tiger Warehouse
posted by Joe in Australia on Sep 17, 2016 - 15 comments

Britain's Secret Wars

For more than 100 years, Britain has been perpetually at war. Some conflicts, such as the Falklands, have become central to our national narrative, but others, including the brutal suppression of rebels in Oman, have been deliberately hidden.
posted by Joe in Australia on Sep 10, 2016 - 6 comments

Knives Out

Ian Parker writes about The New York Times' restaurant reviewer: Pete Wells Has His Knives Out
Previously, previously, previously.
posted by Joe in Australia on Sep 5, 2016 - 21 comments

Five years after the tsunami, a husband still searches the sea

"Takamatsu went out with [the] regular dive customers -- the ones who dove for fun. They had no idea Takamatsu was searching for a body." [SLNYT] [warning: some graphic details re body decomposition]
posted by trillian on Aug 30, 2016 - 12 comments

"He makes his work look effortless."

Will somebody please give Norm Macdonald another TV show? by Geoff Edgers, Washington Post
"If we could have, we would have had Norm on every damn week,” Letterman says. “He is funny in a way that some people inhale and exhale. With others, you can tell the comedy, the humor is considered. With Norm, he exudes it. It’s sort of a furnace in him because he’s so effortless. The combination of the delivery and his appearance and his intelligence. There may be people as funny as Norm, but I don’t know anybody who is funnier.” -- David Letterman
(Norm Macdonald, most recent previously: 1, 2, 3, 4)
posted by Room 641-A on Aug 23, 2016 - 33 comments

Gevaldike nayess

Gitl Schaechter-Viswanath of Teaneck finishes her father’s Yiddish dictionary: Yiddish has a word for it
posted by Joe in Australia on Aug 4, 2016 - 25 comments

What Happened to 'The Most Liberated Woman in America'?

Barbara Williamson co-founded one of the most famous radical sex experiments of the 1970s. Then she got wild.
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jun 24, 2016 - 17 comments

The shining

The Polyamorous Christian Socialist Utopia That Made Silverware for Proper Americans
posted by Joe in Australia on Jun 22, 2016 - 26 comments

Citizen Khan

Behind a Muslim community in northern Wyoming lies one enterprising man—and countless tamales.
posted by Joe in Australia on May 31, 2016 - 16 comments

Living is complicated

Last Men Standing. The stories of eight men who aren't supposed to be here. Diagnosed with HIV in the 1980's, when that was a death sentence, they are now living lives they never expected to have. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 20, 2016 - 8 comments

I didn't know how to protect myself if that meant disappointing men.

"Just recently, I began to see what I lost. It wasn't a job, a wife, a house. There was no tangible evidence of my fall, no record of my mistakes to be expunged. There was only the wreckage of my early adulthood, the loss of my unstoppable nature, and the empty hole where once my confidence grew. There was only a string of decisions to run and run again, to hide from ambition, to leave the theater forever, and to disown my dedication as a childish fantasy. And the reinforcement of my suspicion that I was only visible when I was wanted, and that nothing about me would ever eclipse my objecthood." (Content warning for child sex abuse)
posted by amnesia and magnets on Mar 24, 2016 - 5 comments

There Is Light Here As Well

"Growing up in this home, I was ensconced in blackness — and as an adult, I now see and appreciate the ways that affirmed my identity. I finally saw Ferris Bueller’s Day Off when I was 24, and I was shocked that it was lauded as a 'staple of teen comedy.' I had always thought that the classic tale of Chicago youth skipping class was Cooley High. I didn’t learn whiteness as a default, or the limitations placed on those who exist outside of it, until I was much, much older." Jasmine Sanders (@ToniAliceZora) writes for Buzzfeed on growing up in one of Chicago's poorest black neighborhoods. [more inside]
posted by capricorn on Mar 20, 2016 - 18 comments

So THIS is what you do with a liberal arts degree

In some ways, it is hard to imagine two paths more different than being a writer and being a spy. It is certainly hard to imagine two careers with more wildly disparate stakes. And yet there are parallels in the underlying qualities of their practitioners: an interest in psychology, a facility with narrative, a tendency to position oneself as an observer, and a willingness to lie and call it something else.--writer Jennifer DuBois explains what it was like to be hired by the CIA.
posted by MoonOrb on Feb 27, 2016 - 18 comments

At least we spelled your name right!

The New Yorker unfurls a longform expose on Harvey Levin's gossip empire, TMZ, in The Digital Dirt - How TMZ gets the videos and photos that celebrities want to hide.
posted by Room 641-A on Feb 15, 2016 - 24 comments

"Everyone has a story. Like mine, it's rarely visible from the outside."

In the short hush right after, I think about something Chris said: "It is such an emotional journey to train for your first fight, even if you are a totally stereotypical dude." I am surprised to find myself so overwhelmed with gratitude that I tear up... And then they call my name.
"Why Men Fight" — a beautiful longform story about manhood, trauma and amateur boxing, by Thomas Page McBee.
posted by nebulawindphone on Feb 12, 2016 - 83 comments

20/20 vision in the world of high-end art

A painting commissioned for the firm’s hundred-and-fiftieth anniversary, “Transport Through the Ages,” hung above the reception desk. Bouvier insists that he never used confidential information from his logistics business to buy and sell paintings. None of the thirty-five works that he sold Rybolovlev were in storage with Natural Le Coultre. “I have the information not because I am a shipper,” he said. “It is because I am clever.”
The high-end of the art market is full of mystery, built on trust, reputation, and secrecy. What happens when someone starts turning all of that on its head? An art shipper, Russian oligarch, and a Rothko in The Bouvier Affair. (Sam Knight, for The New Yorker)
posted by redct on Feb 2, 2016 - 12 comments

'...follow the law or you’re no better than the crook.'

Inside the Snitch Tank. After his arrest for the worst mass shooting in Orange County, CA history, Scott Dekraai poured out his feelings to a jailhouse informant. But instead of nailing down a death-penalty conviction against a confessed killer who was arrested with murder weapons in his car, the bugging of Dekraai’s cell touched off a legal storm over prosecutorial misconduct and the misuse of jailhouse informants which has delayed justice and drawn national attention. The Orange County Register has set up an extensive website to accompany their ongoing investigation and report.
posted by zarq on Jan 13, 2016 - 17 comments

The Long Fall of Phoebe Jonchuck

"He was a schemer who used the courts for profit and revenge. He was a paranoid, angry meth addict who had been arrested for battery and domestic violence seven times. He had been involuntarily committed, by his family’s count. And yet, in its report on Phoebe’s death, the Florida Department of Children and Families concluded, “There was nothing in the preceding several years that could have reasonably been interpreted as predictive of such an event.
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Jan 8, 2016 - 13 comments

215 Of The Best Longreads Of 2015

215 Of The Best Longreads Of 2015 [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger on Jan 1, 2016 - 19 comments

just the sounds of buzzing flies and sobbing

The art of tour guiding
When you’re driving a bus full of tourists through the Australian outback,
a packet of chewing gum may be your only hope.

posted by Joe in Australia on Dec 28, 2015 - 27 comments

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