23rd of April: It Never Ends

We’re now about four days into the general election and I’m already so tired. Here are some articles to distract yourself from the grinding tedium and misery of the news this week.

Still haven’t gotten right into the new Kendrick album (one song sounds like Flight of the Conchords tbh) but the second song is great. Is the video good? IDK I’ve not seen it. Here it is:

  • Smart analysis, going beyond perverse fascination with the size of the bomb, of that strike on ISIS in Afghanistan.
  • Cannot believe I’m including #election content I’m livid. This is encouraging and optimistic on how Labour’s massively increased membership could help this election. I’m sceptical because I have been canvassing twice and hated it a lot, but there we are. Will see what marginal seats there are near me (I live at the border between Keir Starmer, Jeremy Corbyn and Emily Thornberry’s constituencies tbh). On the other hand, this is really good on the constant struggle between the knowledge that evil always wins, and the hope that this time it might not.
  • Review of some books on housing in the US that are really interesting on eviction and the foreclosure crisis.
  • I only did about a fortnight in the call centre (awful and I got sacked), so while this piece on the constant supervision sounds familiar, I think I was lucky not to have been so ground down by it.
  • Really good long article on the chocolate factory that moved from the UK to Poland, the workforces at both ends, the history, the politics of the moves, all of it. Really interesting and nuanced.
  • It’s nice to see vile oil companies getting found out even if it doesn’t go anywhere – this is a good dig into Shell Oil’s dealings with a bent Nigerian oil minister.
  • I always figured the reason not to donate a kidney is you’d have to stay off the pints. This article on donating one to a stranger is interesting and quite moving, but doesn’t mention the pints factor.
  • Having watched spellbound as a nerd online opened up a booster pack of pokemon cards on camera, I was v interested in this article on the phenomenon of “unboxing” videos.
  • This could have been longer and more detailed, tbh, but it goes some of the way to explaining why cocktails are so expensive (some of the way).
  • This was a good Golby I guess, especially as god wouldn’t it be nice not to be in England for a bit. Dreadful place.

Bye, lads. Hopefully I’ll talk to you before the election but if not, vote Labour x

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9th of April: Who Even Knows

I guess this is nominally still a fortnightly round-up but whatever, here I am, got some articles for you.

Song of the week can be this great old Muse one IDK.

  • This article on the plans for when the Queen dies had already done eight rounds of the internet when I added it to the list, and it’s now Old, but it came up at midnight last night and we were talking about it till 3 so it’s still pride of place. It is incredible start to finish.
  • Will this make any sense to you if you’re not on Twitter, let alone my specific little corner of it? IDK really. If the name Jolyon means nothing to you, then I guess the epoch of the Jolyoncene won’t either. It’s very sharp though.
  • Two pieces on the UK’s nasty grubby migration policy. One tracking the gradual tightening of conditions on bringing family over, and one from just after the big Trump protests pointing out how close May is to his politics.
  • This, from a few months ago, on how the media taught Trump war was a great way to get them to praise him, seems v prescient now. Title: “you cretins are going to get thousands of people killed”.
  • The PissPigGranddad (lol) saga is coming to an end and this is most of his story I guess. It’s an interesting read and as a bonus, the reporter quotes his crude tweets in print which is great.
  • This is wild, and written about an absolute dickhead probably, on a Wall Street informant trying to turn on the FBI.
  • On food and memory and tinned fish, this is really good – quite hard though, fair bit of violence so fair warning.
  • Good guide to digital security.
  • On the one hand, this really cute story of chickens helping a man cope after a lifetime of mental illness…
  • On the other, this quite lovely piece on London’s fried chicken shops.
  • Based on this upsettingly short article about Palermo recovering from the Mafia’s domination, I would really like to read more about that history.
  • Guess it’s no surprise Irish pubs in the wider world are such bleak grim places when they’re literally getting exported wholesale. This is interesting though.
  • It seems apt that this article on some of Muse’s best bits is ridiculous and slightly embarrassing because Muse are also (etc. etc.)]
  • Very interesting on the sort of cultural standing of different beers and how they react to each other – conveniently, Bud Light has just returned to the UK after twenty years and is being heavily marketed so you can get on that if you wish. (#spon)
  • This piece is weird and creepy (and may feature some pictures of bums I’m not sure I read it text-only). In the first half of the twentieth century the developing science of posture and body-building led to some really weird stuff.
  • Why is this even here IDK, it’s an interesting review of a book about how football evolved after the Hillsborough.
  • I told you all about Left Shift last time around so you should have seen this already but I really enjoyed this long essay about open world games. This is the first part.

It’s sunny out, go enjoy it. See you soon probably xx