New York Times

scrabble-tiles

Scrabble Acknowledges the Importance of Vaping: Links You Need to See

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The unbelievable things that can happen in a day! First, the Boy Scouts of America have finally admitted that their longstanding ban on participation by openly gay adults is no longer sustainable, and their national president called for change…mic drop. No, wait. Pick that mic back up — that’s not all. Second, the story of how Kimye got together is different than you think: Kim pursued Kanye. And third, that stickler for proper words, that jerk who never, ever gave you pointz for creative spelling—Scrabble—just added thousands of new words that include slang like “obvs,” “sexting,” “vape” (about which Flavorwire’s Jonathon Sturgeon wrote extensively) and “cazh” (as in “casual”). Now that mic can be dropped.
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How Do We Fight a Culture in Which “Pretty Hurts” Workers, From Sweatshops to Nail Salons?

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In the past two weeks, investigative journalism has woken us up to the price, in human terms, of cheap beauty. First, John Oliver and his team reminded us about the sweatshops, child labor, and unsafe conditions that go into our “fast fashion.” Now, The New York Times‘ Sarah Maslin Nir has published a long exposé of conditions in New York City nail salons (short answer: they’re abysmal) that is setting social media ablaze. Reactions have ranged from self-flagellation and self-righteousness among salon clientele to questions about the best way to fix the situation: Tip better? Organize? Abstain?
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Chernipster

Chernobyl and Its Radiant Creative Culture Lures New Yorkers

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It started with a Geiger counter. Just as the Girls tour of Greenpoint generated buzz about that secluded, environmental hazard-plagued, northern nook of Brook, the Chernobyl Diaries tour of Chernobyl has already begun generating excitement and lifting the stigma surrounding the abandoned nuclear power plant and its environs. As they may or may not say in real estate, “it was only a matter of time.”
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tonimorrison

Toni Morrison Is Not Your Grandmother: On the Explosive, Alienating ‘God Help the Child’

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It is a strange fact of Toni Morrison’s career that no matter how viscerally — in at times the clearest and most instinctive sentences in narrative prose — she lays bare the sexual brutality and racial hatred that undergirds American life, she will still be expected to play the part of grandmotherly sage. In her recent, necessary, even recuperative piece “The Radical Vision of Toni Morrison,” Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah momentarily chides herself for wanting as much from the only living American Nobel Prize in Literature laureate. “I had spent hours with Morrison, accosting her with questions, thinking about her, observing her,” Kaadzi wrote. “Suddenly I felt greedy and excused myself in a hurry. How silly of me to think that she should provide me with an answer to the old woman’s riddle, to not see all the ways Morrison has given of herself.” It’s true: Toni Morrison is not here to comfort… Read More

harperlee

Is It Time to Get Hopeful About Harper Lee?

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Now that the Harper Lee exploitation story is fizzling out for the second time, let’s take a moment to remember that the author has always reserved as much ire for journalists as for any other type of carpetbagger. Since the revelation that Lee’s attorney, Tonja Carter, found a manuscript of the unpublished novel Go Set a Watchman — a novel we already knew existed at some point — members of the press, spurred by their own perfunctory reporting, have presumed that the whole thing was an elder-abuse scam meant to earn agent, attorney, publisher — just someone, really — millions of dollars.
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