Why Americans Won't Do Dirty Jobs →
At a moment when the country is relentless focused on unemployment, there are still jobs that often go unfilled. These are difficult, dirty, exhausting jobs that, for previous generations, were the first rickety step on the ladder to prosperity. They still are—just not for Americans.
Condo at the End of the World →
“I’m a firm believer in the New World Order,” she said, rattling off a list of possible apocalyptic fates that she believed had a good chance of coming to pass. These included peak oil, economic collapse, terrorists releasing EMP weapons, short-circuiting gadgets and crippling society. “Mad Max, The Book of Eli, it’s all going to happen.”
Home for the Holidays →
How I envy people who enjoy the company of their parents without the aid of pharmaceuticals.
Dealbreaker: She Needed Me →
In our kitchen one day, Ma said to me that it was ok to feel this way, because wanting is a choice, and people are happier when they can choose. I did not tell her, or Susan, but I knew then that I wanted to be wanted, and that I didn’t want to be needed.
The First Served →
The turkey is not only a native; “He is besides, though a little vain and silly, a bird of courage, and would not hesitate to attack a grenadier of the British guards who should presume to invade his farm yard with a red coat on.”
The Simpletons →
American discourse is saddled with a large and influential do-something school of political punditry, a cadre of pragmatists from Meet the Press to your local editorial board who are forever seeking to solve the country’s problems by transcending ideology, demanding collective citizen sacrifice, and—always—empowering authority.
Afghanistan: What the Anthropologists Say →
The attempt to create impersonal, merit-oriented bureaucracies and to spread liberal beliefs about gender, religion or criminal punishment is as likely to exacerbate conflict as to resolve it. Stability is created with the resources at hand, not from on high or far away (“The state does not live here,” Istalifis like to say).
Business Vs. Personal →
If I wrote a book about the 2011 NBA Lockout, it would either be called Clusterfuck! or CLUSTERFUCK!
How To Tell A Duke From An Earl →
Like most things rooted in centuries of British tradition, it is an immensely complicated business.
China’s Black Market City →
The Wenzhounese have a reputation for both an uncanny sense of business and an almost pathological disregard for the government. The mountains here are no metaphor: Seventy-eight percent of the Wenzhou prefecture is covered by mountains, a fact that proved pivotal to the area’s early development and the central government’s response to it.
Compilation Nation: The history and the rise of... →
Within the world of appropriation, the supercut is a kind of anti-readymade. It telegraphs work and time investment, even a sort of mastery. The more discursive the supercut, the more impressive it is in this regard. It’s pleasing to people on the very terms that appropriative media often piss them off.
Finally ATMO: Learning to Review Bicycles →
The frame is the frame, and the wheels have to be in the right place.
38 Seconds →
Jack is rough-edged, impervious to danger, and the only vehicle he ever loved more than his Harley was his tank. He will be forgotten by history, but not by anyone who knows him.
The Curse of Lono →
They weren’t ready for it. The last time anybody killed a big marlin in Hawaii with a short-handled Samoan war club was about 300 years ago.
The Beginning of the End for the NCAA:... →
As soon as you pay someone $2,000, you cannot make the argument that it is unethical to pay that person $5,000, or $10,000, or a million bucks a year, for all that.
Queueless on Immigration →
But though the immigration process for skilled workers is long, arduous and fraught with failure — at least there is one.
The cult of "Death of a Racehorse" →
I asked him if he had any idea that his story — about an hour, one draft, on a manual typewriter, in the rain — was as close to perfection as sportswriting could be. “Oh yes,” he said. “When you get a good story, you know. That story … I knew I had hit that one out.”
Death of a Racehorse →
They were going to the post for the sixth race at Jamaica, two year olds, some making their first starts, to go five and a half furlongs for a purse of four thousand dollars.
Two Economists Explain the NBA Lockout →
Unlike in Silicon Valley, there are no NBA “start-ups.” You cannot create a new NBA team without permission of the incumbent owners.
Inside the secret world of Trader Joe's →
Make no mistake: A typical family couldn’t do all its shopping at the store. There’s no baby food, toothpicks, or other necessities. But for this crowd of urbanites and college kids, Trader Joe’s is nirvana.