A Report From the Exorcism and Levitation of Brooklyn’s New Vice Media Headquarters

Employees of Vice Media gathered in the atrium of their Williamsburg office on Tuesday afternoon and pointed their phone-cameras out the front door as a group stood on the sidewalk chanting, “Out, demons, out.” Led by jazz-pranksters Talibam!, a group of almost three dozen followed the procedures of the exorcism, overseen by keyboardist Matt Mottel. “Out, demons, out,” the assembled continued to chant, as the snow fell harder and faster. Small children beat on drums, and noise came from an electric guitar, a harmonica, and hand percussion. A man in a ski mask and blue crash helmet (topped with a cone of insulation foam) pierced the din by fairly expertly playing a balloon. The noise, in turn, triggered a car alarm, which bleated and flashed in sympathy with the oppressed. Almost everyone on both sides of the glass seemed to be documenting the event. … Read More

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Maureen Dowd Stumbles Upon Female “Raunch” Comedy, Proclaims It a Trend

It is one of the small pleasures of life to see a New York Times op-ed columnist come down from her tower, take notice of a phenomenon in the culture sphere, and proclaim it an actual trend. It is even better when that trend has been percolating for over a decade, as is the case with the subject of Maureen Dowd’s most recent column, “Dirty Words From Pretty Mouths.” … Read More

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‘Django Unchained’ Plantation Transformed Into Major Slavery Museum With Strange Origin Story

“There is no place you or I can go, to think about or not think about, to summon the presences of, or recollect the absences of slaves,” Toni Morrison once said, explaining why she wrote Beloved, in an observation that inspired the Bench by the Road Project, which creates small memorials to African-American history. “There is no suitable memorial, or plaque, or wreath, or wall, or park, or skyscraper lobby. There’s no 300-foot tower, there’s no small bench by the road. There is not even a tree scored, an initial that I can visit or you can visit in Charleston or Savannah or New York or Providence or better still on the banks of the Mississippi. And because such a place doesn’t exist… the book had to.”

Decades after Morrison’s call and nine years after the founding of the Bench by the Road Project, a large museum commemorating the horrible realities of slavery has finally been built. Its origin story is fascinating and bizarre. … Read More

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Watch Riveting Live Llama Chase Now

Some llamas are loose in Sun City, Arizona, and if you’re like me, your Twitter feed is all llama, all… Read More

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25 Writers on Fashion, Clothing, and Style

In light of all the recent Joan Didion fetishization, it’s fascinating to visit the exhibit Didion by Wasser, now at New York’s Danziger Gallery. In a small room dedicated to Julian Wasser’s iconic shoot featuring Didion and her Corvette Stingray, you’ll find tear sheets and shots of Didion smiling, laughing, looking uncomfortable and, well, seeming like a regular person. Seeing Didion laugh made me think about what it means for writers to have personal style — whether it’s their own fashion choices or the clothing they write about. Some of our most iconic writers have turned their attention to fashion; here’s our compilation of 25 essential… Read More

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Is the Internet Helping Americans Talk About Death?

Oliver Sacks is dying. The beloved neurologist wrote an incredibly clear-eyed piece about his diagnosis for the New York Times, which speaks in honest, direct language about the way he wants to exit the world. It’s both uplifting and devastating when he addresses the unique tragedy of each loss as only a scientist can. … Read More

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On Campus, Trans Inclusion Is Really About Acceptance, Not Language Policing

In the decade since I left my large, co-ed university, I’ve grown envious of the women I’ve encountered who matriculated at traditional women’s colleges. Far from the tea-sipping institution that my mother attended — and hated — in the ’60s, many of these “single-sex” institutions have boomeranged back towards a progressive purpose. To me, they have seemed like feminist incubators of “strong [insert school here]” graduates who mentor each other, get each other jobs, and emerge into the world unafraid. … Read More

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Playing Word Association With Ruth Bader Ginsburg

MSNBC’s Irin Carmon sat down for a lengthy interview with the Notorious RBG, also known as the beloved and … Read More

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