*Note: I went way, way east on business for a couple weeks, but I’m back now. I cannot say anything remotely intelligent about India in this space at this time, so I’ll say this: the traffic is amazing. Amid crushing poverty, there’s an unquenchable aspiration of a growing middle class, with very little infrastructure to support it. Also, it was monsoon season. A recent article by Keith Gessen in the New Yorker chronicled Moscow’s ongoing traffic problems. And, of course, China’s ten-day traffic jam kicked around the news last week. Traffic needs talking about. This much, I know. On traffic.
*Words: There are all kinds of variously interpretable meanings buried in cultures’ respective vocabularies of insiders/outsiders. Here’s a list of terms for white people used by non-western cultures.
*Society: What currently practiced social customs are ridiculous? Readers of Daily Dish at The Atlantic respond with: saying “Bless you” after someone sneezes, monogamy and burial of the dead.
*Party tricks: Beer bottles for Tuned Pale Ale have musical notes along the label, showing what beer level corresponds to what musical note when the bottle is blown into. Nice! (It’s also like a concepty small-batchy sort of thing; not Budweiser. But still. Beer!) [not cot]
*Literary: This VQR stuff is pretty fucked up, isn’t it?
*Evocations: Li Wei makes art that you want to be. (I don’t know if that rhymes or not.) Smoke. Flying. Hope. Majesty. [c-monster]
*Collaboration: Pitchfork interviews Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon about his next Bon Iver album, as well as hooping with Kanye in Hawaii and his slow-jam GAYNGS work. My favorite quote: “I’m just a dude in a t-shirt who smells like shit.” Also, Kanye dropped Monster, part of the collaboration (which also includes Ross, Nicki Minaj and Jay-Z) on his blog.
*Break: Yes, I am still going.
*Local: The Minnesota State Fair has begun. And Har Mar Superstar has attended, and has there viewed boars. [s4xton]
*Visuals: These music video posters are compelling, but I have noticed in my past several decades that music videos aren’t often promoted through posters. Small point, but I thought I should put it out there. [coudal]
*Food: Lasagne cupcakes barely look like cupcakes. But they have the word lasagne in them. So I will give them a pass. FOR NOW.
*Writing: George Plimpton interviewed [pdf] Ernest Hemingway for the Paris Review in 1958. “Wounds which do extensive bone and nerve damage are not good for writers, nor anybody else.” Also, there’s some chilling foreshadowing of Hemingway’s own suicide.
*Language: Unsuck It turns business jargon into words that still have meaning. “Action items,” for instance, become “goals.” And “bio breaks” become “breaks.” Courtesy of Mike_FTW.
*Beverage: Rob Walker writes about Insane Clown Posse’s love of Faygo in the New York Times. I like that Martin Bashir and Insane Clown Posse travel in the same circles. Also, ask me sometime about my unsolicited non-celebrity endorsement of generic lasagne. (I will answer with a vague claim to love any lasagne you put in front of me.)
*Beer: Serious Eats sits down for a pint with Surly Brewing’s Todd Haug. (Please note: I love Surly.) “I became interested in local/fresh beer when I was touring the US in the metal band Powermad at the age of 19.”
*Twitter: Here are like a dozen tweets to read, if you have time.
*Automotive: Carlashes – the perfect complement to Truck Nutz?
*E-reading: I spent a couple week with an iPad and that experience, along with this article by David Pogue, have me thinking maybe a Kindle isn’t the worst option right now? What I’d really like is to test more social options – like Copia claims to be – though who knows how long it will be before I can do that?
*Plea: If anyone knows what the best use of some (Bokma) Holland Gin is, I would appreciate some hints.
*Today’s links: F.