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Viral Parenting

from The Atlantic

Being a Parent Has Made My Pandemic Life Simpler, If You Can Believe It

Hear me out.

by Tom McTague

A mother and her child hold hands in a park.

Jonas Bendiksen / Magnum

Perhaps it’s the strange effect of being forced to slow down, to spend all of one’s time outside work pootling and pottering rather than actually doing things and seeing people. Perhaps it’s the atmosphere, the eerie streets, the cordoned-off playgrounds and lines of masked shoppers. Perhaps it’s just being a dad with a garden, a shelf full of Dr. Seuss stories, and sudden access to Disney’s entire back catalog. Whatever it is, something in the air is making a time that should be anxious, monotonous, and frustrating somehow pleasant, and even meaningful.

One might assume my life to be an unrelenting grind right now—I’m locked down in London, a global epicenter for the coronavirus pandemic, trying to juggle my day job with looking after a 3-year-old. Yet that hasn’t been my experience. Having children does add pressure to lockdown life, no doubt, and those without children are always very gracious to say how much harder it must be than what they’re experiencing. I am conscious that this pressure is doubled for single parents, parents without a steady income, or parents whose jobs require them to risk their health in the service of everyone else’s. But for the privileged professional middle classes, I am beginning to think that parents have it better than nonparents.

[ click to continue reading at The Atlantic ]

Posted on May 4, 2020 by Editor

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Internet Archive Strikes Again

from BoingBoing

Watch a slew of vintage MTV from the 1980s

by DAVID PESCOVITZ

Archive.org contributor Windsinger is uploading their entire VHS collection of MTV recordings from the channel’s finest era, from its launch on August 1, 1981 until 1989 (with a few 1991 episodes of 120 Minutes thrown in for good measure). It’s remarkable how the channel has evolved (?) from its pioneering earliest days filled with new music, youth culture, and visual experimentalism to its current form.

“I’ve been collecting recordings of full, unedited, WITH commercials & especially the VJs for years,” Windsinger writes. “I’ve found these videos from old websites, torrent sites, sharing things, The Original MTV VJs facebook page, and of course the Archive.”

[ click to continue reading at BoingBoing ]

Posted on May 3, 2020 by Editor

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Kim Gordon Rocks

from The New Yorker

Kim Gordon Is Home Again

The artist on Instagram, ambition, and Los Angeles.

By Amanda Petrusich

“The planet is on its way out if we don’t get our act together,” Kim Gordon, the musician and avant-garde polymath, said. “And then you look around and see a Buddhist catchphrase engraved on the floor of a juice place: ‘Be Here Now.’ ” Photograph by Annabel Mehran for The New Yorker

Kim Gordon was born in upstate New York, in 1953, but was raised on the West Side of Los Angeles, where her father taught in the sociology department at U.C.L.A., and her mother worked as a seamstress. She moved to New York City in 1980, with designs on becoming an artist. In 1981, Gordon and the guitarists Lee Ranaldo and Thurston Moore started Sonic Youth, an experimental rock band that inadvertently helped usher in the alternative-boom of the early nineteen-nineties. Gordon was the kind of cool—vaguely aloof, impossibly chic, intimidatingly smart—that made young women like me feel equal parts terrified and enamored. During a time when it was still somewhat anomalous to see women playing in rock bands, and especially in bands as esoteric and adventurous as Sonic Youth, Gordon was a beacon.

She was also an avant-garde polymath. Gordon produced Hole’s début album, “Pretty on the Inside,” co-founded X-girl, a streetwear brand for women (the actress Chloë Sevigny was its official face), formed a series of musical side projects, and eventually began to show her drawings, paintings, and collages in galleries around the world. Around 2011, her marriage to Moore fell apart, and Sonic Youth went on an indefinite hiatus. Four years later, Gordon published “Girl in A Band,” a thoughtful, occasionally scathing memoir that recounts her formative years in Sonic Youth, her relationship with Moore, the birth of her daughter, and the origins of her art practice. She has spent the last several years performing as half of Body/Head, with the experimental musician Bill Nace, and, in 2019, at age sixty-six, she released her first solo album, “No Home Record.”

In April, Gordon and I began a correspondence, and she shared her thoughts on Instagram, Los Angeles, overpriced coffee, and canvassing for Bernie Sanders. This interview has been condensed and edited.

[ click to continue reading at TNY ]

Posted on May 2, 2020 by Editor

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Mothers & Children

from artnet

Ahead of Mother’s Day, See Some of the Most Tender Depictions of Mothers and Children Throughout Art History

From Gustav Klimt to Alice Neel, artists have long focused on the subject of mothers.

by Caroline Goldstein & Katie White

Alice Neel, <i>Mother and Child (Nancy and Olivia)</i> (1967). Courtesy of Artnet.
Alice Neel, Mother and Child (Nancy and Olivia) (1967). Courtesy of Artnet.

There’s an old saying that goes, “If it’s not one thing, it’s your mother.” Poking fun at the sometimes overbearing nature of mother figures, the maxim highlights a universal truth: that life-giving often means succumbing to a future fraught with complicated emotions and worry.

And while mothers bear this responsibility and burden with a great deal of courage, if they’re especially lucky, they may be paid back with love, affection, and gifts when their offspring grow up—or, better yet, be portrayed in a work of art for all the world to see. 

Indeed, mothers have always made wonderful subjects for artists, who have long explored the space between their roles as individuals and as caregivers. Just ahead of Mother’s Day, we’ve rounded up eight famous artworks that beautifully depict the bond between mother and child.

[ click to continue reading at artnet ]

Posted on May 1, 2020 by Editor

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When News Became Sports

from Vanity Fair

“SHOTS FIRED. HILTON HOTEL”: HOW CNN’S RAW, UNFOLDING REAGAN COVERAGE HERALDED THE NONSTOP NEWS CYCLE

Ted Turner’s upstart cable network beat the Big Three in reporting on the 1981 assassination attempt, though it—along with its broadcast rivals—made a major mistake amid the studio chaos, an early sign of the perils of breaking news on TV.

BY LISA NAPOLI

On a rainy spring Monday in March, Cissy Baker wound up sending her White House crew to a snoozer of a time-filler: the ballroom of the sprawling Washington Hilton on Connecticut Avenue, where President Ronald Reagan was about to address the national Conference of the Building and Construction Trades of the mighty trade labor union, AFL-CIO.

As was the custom in the carefully orchestrated universe of Washington politics, the text of the speech had been released to the press corps in advance. Most television viewers were unaccustomed to seeing routine events of the day in their entirety, but this was the kind of typical governmental affair that helped CNN burn through many an hour. There was always the chance that at some point the affable president might “commit news,” as the broadcasters cheekily referred to any unexpected development. Maybe there’d be boos from the audience; a bit of mileage could be had from that. As far as Atlanta was concerned, a speech by the president was far preferable to a five-minute, thumb-sucking analysis from Daniel Schorr. No wonder his nickname at CBS had been “Jukebox.”

The camera lingered on the president as he shook hands and beamed his movie-star grin. Anchor Bernie Shaw smoothly deployed his inside-the-Beltway knowledge in summarizing the remarks. Being able to offer this sort of live, postgame analysis was precisely what had lured him to this job. Who cared if there was no audience?

“President Reagan, in a speech that lasted about 19 minutes, drew applause four times from this group,” Shaw observed, with such authority that a viewer might actually believe there was a significance to the number of rounds of applause.

His midday assignment complete, he tossed the baton back to Atlanta. And during the next commercial break, Baker’s wish for a more interesting day suddenly materialized.

The words rang out from the police scanner at 2:27 p.m. “Shots fired” followed by “Hilton Hotel.”

In that instant, Baker frantically connected the dots: The Hilton? That’s where the president was, with one of her crews wrapping up inside. Her mind raced strategically over the map of the city. The chess game of routing personnel, particularly at a time of crisis, was a crucial part of running an assignment desk. Her back-of-the-hand knowledge of the nation’s capital was precisely the reason she’d been offered this job. It didn’t hurt that she ranked as a Washington insider. Her father happened to be the Senate majority leader, Howard Baker.

The next words that bleated out of the scanner offered a disturbing new clue: “Rainbow to GW.” Baker knew the code. “GW” meant the George Washington Hospital, and “Rainbow,” the first lady. If Nancy Reagan was heading for the hospital, that must be because the president was headed there too. But why?

Hearing the fracas among his anxious colleagues, Shaw demanded to know what was going on. A desk assistant said sarcastically, “I think they’re shooting at your president.”

“Don’t joke,” Shaw scolded.

For a veteran newsman, he was curiously unjaded—patriotic, and respectful of authority, even. (That didn’t equal passive. As a young member of the Marine Corps in Hawaii, he’d tracked down Walter Cronkite when he’d learned the anchorman was coming to town, urgently hoping for guidance on how to get into the business.)

The assistant responded to Shaw: “I’m not joking.”

[ click to continue reading at VF ]

Posted on April 28, 2020 by Editor

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Pas plus, Nicoderm! Merde!

from The New York Post

France limits sales of nicotine products after fewer smokers catch coronavirus

By Laura Italiano

Nicotine patch
picture alliance via Getty Images

Fearing a run on nicotine gum and patches, France has banned the online sale of the products — a move spurred by reports of a lower-than-expected number of smokers among those hospitalized with the coronavirus.

In addition to the online ban, French authorities are limiting people who purchase the smoking cessation products at pharmacies to one month’s supply only, BBC.com reported.

[ click to continue reading at NYP ]

Posted on April 27, 2020 by Editor

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Return of The Stoics

from The Guardian

Stoicism in a time of pandemic: how Marcus Aurelius can help

by Donald Robertson

A bust of Emperor Marcus Aurelius.
A bust of Emperor Marcus Aurelius. Photograph: DEA/G DAagli Orti/De Agostini via Getty Images

The Meditations, by a Roman emperor who died in a plague named after him, has much to say about how to face fear, pain, anxiety and loss.

The Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus was the last famous Stoic philosopher of antiquity. During the last 14 years of his life he faced one of the worst plagues in European history. The Antonine Plague, named after him, was probably caused by a strain of the smallpox virus. It’s estimated to have killed up to 5 million people, possibly including Marcus himself.

From AD166 to around AD180, repeated outbreaks occurred throughout the known world. Roman historians describe the legions being devastated, and entire towns and villages being depopulated and going to ruin. Rome itself was particularly badly affected, carts leaving the city each day piled high with dead bodies.

In the middle of this plague, Marcus wrote a book, known as The Meditations, which records the moral and psychological advice he gave himself at this time. He frequently applies Stoic philosophy to the challenges of coping with pain, illness, anxiety and loss. It’s no stretch of the imagination to view The Meditations as a manual for developing precisely the mental resilience skills required to cope with a pandemic.

First of all, because Stoics believe that our true good resides in our own character and actions, they would frequently remind themselves to distinguish between what’s “up to us” and what isn’t. Modern Stoics tend to call this “the dichotomy of control” and many people find this distinction alone helpful in alleviating stress. What happens to me is never directly under my control, never completely up to me, but my own thoughts and actions are – at least the voluntary ones. The pandemic isn’t really under my control but the way I behave in response to it is.

[ click to continue reading at The Guardian ]

Posted on April 26, 2020 by Editor

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COVID In The Nude

from DNYUZ

The Nude Selfie Is Now High Art

It has become an act of resilience in isolation, a way to seduce without touch.

Frida Kahlo’s “The Broken Column,” a self portrait. / Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Before face-touching became potentially lethal, my friend Dave had a lot of lovers. Now he makes do with nude selfies. He doesn’t even request them, he says. They appear as if by magic. “I wake up and they are just there.”

“I keep getting explicit photos from people I thought were just my friends,” says Matthew, an artist in Providence, R.I. He adds, “It’s nice to know they’re thinking of me.”

Since the pandemic began, sex has changed: It’s imagined, monogamous, Zoomed or Skyped. And nude selfies have become one symbol of resilience, a refusal to let social distancing render us sexless. Nude selfies are no longer foreplay, a whetting of a lover’s appetite, but the whole meal.

Though the debate about art versus pornography has never been settled, a case can be made that quarantine nude selfies are art. Some of us finally have time to make art, and this is the art we are making: carefully posed, cast in shadows, expertly filtered. These aren’t garish below-the-belt shots under fluorescent lighting, a half-used roll of toilet paper in the background. They are solicited or spontaneous. They are gifts to partners in separate quarantines, friends who aren’t exactly friends, unmet Hinge matches and exes. (Exes are popping up like Wack-a-Moles these days.)

“Before the quarantine, I navigated under a ‘nudes are for boyfriends’ rule,” says Zoe, a marketing assistant in Los Angeles. “Something special for someone I trust. But in times of loneliness I turn to serial dating and now that plays out via virtual connections.”

[ click to continue reading at DNYUZ ]

Posted on April 24, 2020 by Editor

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When You Can’t Afford Gallery Prices

Posted on April 23, 2020 by Editor

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Family Video Gaming Finally

from TIME Magazine

Don’t Feel Bad If Your Kids Are Gaming More Than Ever. In Fact, Why Not Join Them?

BY SEAN GREGORY


I’ve been thinking an awful lot about the 1989 Detroit Pistons over the past few days. Rick Mahorn, the starting power forward, can’t make a goddamn layup. Neither can Dennis Rodman. Isaiah Thomas is missing too many shots. Do I have anyone on my team who can stop Michael Jordan, who over the past four games is averaging 83.5 points per game against a squad once known as “The Bad Boys” because of its nasty defensive disposition? I’m not seeing much Bad in these Boys. 

Yeah, it would probably be sorry enough if I was consumed by the actual Detroit team that last played an actual NBA game at the outset of the George H.W. Bush administration. But no, I’m talking about the video game version of that championship squad. In NBA 2K20, the popular virtual hoops game that for many fans has replaced real basketball during the coronavirus pandemic, you can play using one of many fine historic NBA squads. And currently, my 13-year-old son and I are in a heated best-of-seven series, featuring my ‘89 Pistons versus his 1991 Chicago Bulls, another NBA title team, on our PlayStation 4. He’s up three games to one.

For a middle-aged man with many adult responsibilities, stressing about Bill Laimbeer’s minutes during these scary times doesn’t seem very healthy.

[ click to continue reading at TIME ]

Posted on April 22, 2020 by Editor

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COVID Reads

from The Millions

On Pandemic and Literature

by Ed Simon

Less than a century after the Black Death descended into Europe and killed 75 million people—as much as 60 percent of the population (90% in some places) dead in the five years after 1347—an anonymous Alsatian engraver with the fantastic appellation of “Master of the Playing Cards” saw fit to depict St. Sebastian: the patron saint of plague victims. Making his name, literally, from the series of playing cards he produced at the moment when the pastime first became popular in Germany, the engraver decorated his suits with bears and wolves, lions and birds, flowers and woodwoses. The Master of Playing Cards’s largest engraving, however, was the aforementioned depiction of the unfortunate third-century martyr who suffered by order of the Emperor Diocletian. A violent image, but even several generations after the worst of the Black Death, and Sebastian still resonated with the populace, who remembered that “To many Europeans, the pestilence seemed to be the punishment of a wrathful Creator,” as John Kelly notes in The Great Mortality: An Intimate History of the Black Death, the Most Devastating Plague of all Time.

The cult of Sebastian had grown in the years between the Black Death and the engraving, and during that interim the ancient martyr had become associated with plague victims. His suffering reminded people of their own lot—the sense that more hardship was inevitable, that the appearance of purpled buboes looked like arrows pulled from Sebastian’s eviscerated flesh after his attempted execution, and most of all the indiscrimination of which portion of bruised skin would be arrow-pierced seeming as random as who should die from plague. Produced roughly around 1440, when any direct memory of the greatest bubonic plague had long-since passed (even while smaller reoccurrences occurred for centuries), the Master of the Playing Cards presents a serene Sebastian, tied to a short tree while four archers pummel him with said arrows. Unlike more popular depictions of the saint, such as Andrea Mantegna’s painting made only four decades later, or El Grecoand Peter Paul Reubens’s explicitly lithe and beautiful Sebastians made in respectively the 16th and 17th centuries, the engraver gives us a calm, almost bemused, martyr. He has an accepting smile on his face. Two arrows protrude from his puckered flesh. More are clearly coming.

[ click to continue reading at MM ]

Posted on April 19, 2020 by Editor

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Caveman Make String

from artnet

Archaeologists Just Discovered That Neanderthals Made String 50,000 Years Ago, Suggesting They Were Waaay Smarter Than We Thought

The researchers say that Neanderthals “really weren’t very different from us.”

Modern cordage made of grass fibers. Photo courtesy of Bruce Hardy.
Modern cordage made of grass fibers. Photo courtesy of Bruce Hardy.

Archaeologists have unearthed more evidence that Neanderthals were smarter than we previously believed.

According to newly found materials, our human brethren were making the world’s first string 50,000 years ago. The oldest-known cord fragments prior to this discovery were found in Israel, and were made some 19,000 years ago.

The find comes from an archaeological site called Abri du Maras in southeastern France, where Neanderthals lived between 90,000 and 42,000 years ago.

“The idea that Neanderthals were cognitively inferior to modern humans is becoming increasingly untenable,” researchers say in an article documenting their finds published in Scientific Reports.

[ click to continue reading at artnet ]

Posted on April 16, 2020 by Editor

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COVID Awareness

from DNYUZ

The Year of Magical Thinking

The Year of Magical Thinking

Last week Angela Missoni took a walk in the garden of her house in Sumirago, a snug town in Italy about an hour northwest of Milan. After a month in isolation, a difficult morning on Zoom and a steady drumbeat of bad tidings for business, she needed some air.

“You can imagine the kind of board meetings we have been having,” said Ms. Missoni, the creative director of a label founded by her parents, Ottavio and Rosita, in 1953. “It has been kind of intense.”

Ms. Missoni is a charismatic woman with an easy smile, a mane of dark curls and a disarming earth mother air. Yet she is also a hardheaded businesswoman, one who has driven the global growth of her family enterprise.

She is not, in other words, a woo-woo.

And yet when, on her walk in the garden, she spotted a four-leaf clover in the grass, she was struck by a premonition, she said. Despite the gloom, the grim economic forecast, the generalized terrors harassing a world consumed by coronavirus, all, she felt, would be well.

“To have found one right after this meeting, I suddenly thought, ‘OK, that’s a very good sign,’” Ms. Missoni, 62, said by phone. “You know, as soon as you smile, already your whole body is benefiting from your state of mind.”

[ click to continue reading at DNYUZ ]

Posted on April 15, 2020 by Editor

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Tubular Bells

Posted on April 14, 2020 by Editor

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The F-word Re-discovered

from The Daily Mail

World’s earliest record of the F-word is discovered in manuscript written by bored Scottish student in 1568 locked away in the vault of the National Library of Scotland

  • Earliest written use of the F-word dates back to a 500-year-old manuscript
  • Uni student wrote the manuscript as plague locked down his Edinburgh home   
  • It was shown from the National Library of Scotland for a BBC documentary 

By LUKE MAY

The world’s earliest recorded use of the F-word lies in a Scottish manuscript penned by a bored student who was in lockdown due to the plague.

A documentary airing on Tuesday will show off the Bannatyne Manuscript, which dates back to 1568 and is kept under lock and key in the National Library of Scotland. 

Scotland – Contains Strong Language will see singer Cora Bissett take a tour of her country and find out more about Scotland’s relationship with swearing. 

[ click to continue reading at Daily Mail ]

Posted on April 13, 2020 by Editor

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Happy Easter

via GIPHY

Posted on April 12, 2020 by Editor

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H-O-R-S-E

from MarketWatch

NBA set to televise H-O-R-S-E competition with league stars on ESPN

The NBA stopped play on March 11 due to the coronavirus pandemic

By Weston Blasi

The NBA is nearing a deal with ESPN DIS, +3.39% to televise a H-O-R-S-E competition, which would include current NBA stars Chris Paul, Trae Young, Zach LaVine, and Mike Conley.

The game will also include retired players Chauncey Billups and Paul Pierce, as well as current WNBA star Allie Quigley and WNBA legend Tamika Catchings.

The shot-for-shot game involves one player making a basket — often a trick shot — and his opponent having to make the same shot. If the second player misses it, he gets a letter. When he misses five shots — enough to spell out H-O-R-S-E — he loses.

The NBA hosted a H-O-R-S-E competition as part of its All-Star Weekend in 2009 and 2010. It struggled to gain traction and was canceled after only two years. The NBA hosts events such as the dunk contest and 3-point-shootout during its All-Star Weekend.

[ click to continue reading at MarketWatch ]

Posted on April 11, 2020 by Editor

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Night Music

from Brooklyn Vegan

32 videos of Hal Willner’s ’80s series ‘Night Music’ that display his gift for weird, amazing collaborations

By Bill Pearis

We lost the great Hal Willner yesterday. He was a gifted producer whose greatest skill may have been his ability to bring together disparate talents that you might not think would fit together but turned out to be truly inspired. One of the places where you can really see that in action was Night Music, a musical offshoot of Saturday Night Live that lasted two weird wonderful seasons: 1988-1989 as NBC’s Sunday Night on late night on Sundays and hosted by Jools Holland; and then became a syndicated series in 1989-1990 with bandleader David Sanborn taking over hosting duties as well.” Both seasons were presented by Michelob beer who may have been hoping for a different kind of show.

In both seasons the idea was the same: bring together a bunch of great artists — some very famous, some obscure — from all over the musical spectrum and see what happens. Musicians would get their own moment in the spotlight, but every episode ended with a collective jam, which resulted in some things you’d never believe actually happened if there wasn’t video of it, like country icon Conway Twitty doing a song with The Residents. “Beyond putting on music that we love,” Willner told SPIN at the time, “I feel an obligation to expose people to other things. I mean, watching MTV, they don’t tell you about Ornette Coleman…I’m getting back to a musical education with this show. In a weird way, I’m searching for that by having all worlds meet. Having John Zorn, Marianne Faithfull and Aaron Neville in the same hour. Just to have all those emotions make sense together.”

John Zorn, Marianne Faithfull and Aaron Neville was an actual episode, by the way. Sonic Youth made their national television debut on Night Music — on an episode that also featured Diamanda Galas, the Indigo GirlsDaniel Lanois and Evan Lurie and Marc Ribot (covering The Stooges) — and so did Pixies who were on a S2 episode that also featured Sun Ra, singer-songwriter Syd Straw and dance music producer Arthur Baker.

[ click to continue reading at Brooklyn Vegan ]

Posted on April 8, 2020 by Editor

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John Prine Gone – Very Sad

from Rolling Stone

John Prine, One of America’s Greatest Songwriters, Dead at 73

Grammy-winning singer who combined literary genius with a common touch succumbs to coronavirus complications

By STEPHEN L. BETTS & PATRICK DOYLE

John Prine, who for five decades wrote rich, plain-spoken songs that chronicled the struggles and stories of everyday working people and changed the face of modern American roots music, died Tuesday at Nashville’s Vanderbilt University Medical CenterHe was 73. The cause was complications related to COVID-19, his family confirmed to Rolling Stone.

Related: 25 Essential Songs

Prine, who left behind an extraordinary body of folk-country classics, was hospitalized last month after the sudden onset of COVID-19 symptoms, and was placed in intensive care for 13 days. Prine’s wife and manager, Fiona, announced on March 17th that she had tested positive for the virus after they had returned from a European tour.

As a songwriter, Prine was admired by Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, and others, known for his ability to mine seemingly ordinary experiences  — he wrote many of his classics as a mailman in Maywood, Illinois — for revelatory songs that covered the full spectrum of the human experience. There’s “Hello in There,” about the devastating loneliness of an elderly couple; “Sam Stone,” a portrait of a drug-addicted Vietnam soldier suffering from PTSD; and “Paradise,” an ode to his parents’ strip-mined hometown of Paradise, Kentucky, which became an environmental anthem. Prine tackled these subjects with empathy and humor, with an eye for “the in-between spaces,” the moments people don’t talk about, he told Rolling Stone in 2017.  “Prine’s stuff is pure Proustian existentialism,” Dylan said in 2009. “Midwestern mind-trips to the nth degree.”

[ click to continue reading at Rolling Stone ]

Posted on April 7, 2020 by Editor

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Frey with 50 Cent and Eli Roth

from Instagram

[ click to join me on Instagram ]

Posted on April 6, 2020 by Editor

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Rodeo Prince

from The New York Times

Richard Prince: This Ain’t No Retrospective, It’s a Rodeo

A new book looks at the figure of the American cowboy through the outlaw lens of Mr. Prince, an artist known for his sly borrowings.

By Randy Kennedy

A 2012 inkjet and acrylic painting, “Untitled (Cowboy),” by Richard Prince, based on a cover of a pulp-fiction western novel.Credit…via Fulton Ryder

Photography and the mythos of the American cowboy have been lassoed together almost from birth. Even when they weren’t working hand in hand, they were often in close company. The most famous showdown in the Old West, the gunfight at the O.K. Corral, took place not at the corral but six doors down in front of the photography studio of Camillus Fly. He was too busy ducking to take a picture but ran out with a Henry rifle as the shots died away and disarmed Billy Clanton, one of the outlaws in a gang called — yes — the Cowboys.

“Richard Prince: Cowboy,” a lavish, offbeat new book, just published by Prestel, uses photography to take a long look at the pervasive, at times pernicious, influence of the cowboy on movies, television, books, advertising and politics. The book is nominally devoted to the work of Mr. Prince, who rose to fame in the 1980s through his coy appropriation of the majestic cowboy pictures from Marlboro magazine ads. But as compiled and edited by the collector and curator Robert Rubin, the assemblage of art, ephemera and found imagery ends up feeling more like a ripsnorting syllabus for an American studies class that might have been team-taught by Sam Peckinpah and Margaret Mead.

[ click to continue reading at NYT ]

Posted on April 5, 2020 by Editor

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Bill Withers Gone

from PASTE

Legendary Soul Singer Bill Withers Dead at 81

By Lizzie Manno

Legendary soul singer/songwriter Bill Withers died on Monday (March 30) due to heart complications, per a statement provided to the Associated Press. He was best known for hits like “Lean On Me,” “Ain’t No Sunshine,” “Use Me,” “Lovely Day” and more. Withers was a three-time Grammy winner and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015.

“We are devastated by the loss of our beloved, devoted husband and father,” his family wrote in a statement. “A solitary man with a heart driven to connect to the world at large, with his poetry and music, he spoke honestly to people and connected them to each other. As private a life as he lived close to intimate family and friends, his music forever belongs to the world. In this difficult time, we pray his music offers comfort and entertainment as fans hold tight to loved ones.”

Withers was born in Slab Fork, West Virginia in 1938 and was the youngest of six children. He joined the Navy at age 17, spending nine years there, and later moved to Los Angeles after he was discharged. After signing a record contract, he released his first album, Just As I Am, in 1971, which contained one of his greatest songs—“Ain’t No Sunshine”—and was produced by another soul giant, Booker T. Jones (of Booker T. & the M.G.’s). A year later, he released his second album, Still Bill, which contained lasting hits like “Lean On Me” and “Use Me” and became his highest charting album, reaching number four on the Billboard 200. Withers continued to record throughout the 1970s, but by the mid-1980s, he stepped away from music.

[ click to continue reading at PASTE ]

Posted on April 4, 2020 by Editor

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Hockney’s COVID Respite

from BBC

David Hockney shares exclusive art from Normandy, as ‘a respite from the news’

By Will Gompertz

David Hockney is in lockdown at his house in Normandy with his dog Ruby and two of his long-standing assistants, JP and Jonathan. 

He is in the garden most days, drawing the spring awakening on his iPad. In a BBC exclusive, he is sharing 10 of his most recent images (including one animation), nine of which have never been published before, for us all to enjoy at this difficult time, along with his thoughts on the role of art in life.

The artist previously visited Normandy in the autumn of 2018 following the installation of his stained-glass window in Westminster Abbey. He thought it would be a good place to draw and paint the arrival of spring, something he’d done around a decade earlier in East Yorkshire. Those pictures, paintings, and films were the basis for a successful exhibition in 2012 at the Royal Academy in London.

He was attracted to Normandy because it offered a broader range of blossoms, with apple, cherry, pear and plum trees, as well as the hawthorn and blackthorn he had painted before.

“We found this house with a large garden that was cheaper than anything in Sussex”, he wrote in a letter to me. They bought it, renovated it and built a small studio; and have been living there since early March.

“I began drawing the winter trees on a new iPad,” he said. “Then this virus started…

[ click to continue reading at BBC ]

Posted on April 2, 2020 by Editor

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M*A*S*H @ 50

from OBSERVER

50 Years Later, Robert Altman’s ‘MASH’ Is Still Unforgettable

By Brian Fairbanks

You remember the 4077th? Hawkeye, Radar, Trapper John, Henry and Hot Lips?

These days, mentioning MASH gets you an almost uniform response: “Binged it on Netflix.” Yet it’s the movie, and not the long-running TV series that it spawned, that’s arguably more culturally significant. MASH was arguably the earliest “indie” film made inside the studio system, a piece of entertainment still side-splittingly funny, despite its dated perspective. Altman’s movie was a blockbuster back when those mattered, a critical smash back when that meant something, too, and changed the culture.

However, watching it in 2020, over 50 years after its wide release, it’s at best a black comedy about battle-scarred machismo or, at worst, patently offensive. Let’s dive into what made this film terrific, problematic and unforgettable.

[ click to continue reading at OBSERVER ]

Posted on April 1, 2020 by Editor

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Big Hair Coming Back

from CBS New York

Coronavirus Pandemic Upends Men’s Grooming Routines: Expert Predicts Long Hair, Beards Back In Style By Summer

(CBS Local) — You’re overdue for a haircut, but you just realized your local barbershop is one of the many businesses closed stop the spread of COVID-19. You’re not alone.

It doesn’t appear the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued specific guidance on whether to get your haircut or nails done. But the CDC has advised people to avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people and stay at least 6 feet away from others.

“The primary way of cutting down the potential pathway of exposure and transmission is through social distancing,” Mitchel Rosen, associate professor at the Rutgers School of Public Health, told Insider. “Obviously someone doing your hair or nails is right on top of you.”

[ click to continue reading at CBS New York ]

Posted on March 31, 2020 by Editor

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Marriage Going Away

from AEON

Is marriage over?

Marriage is practised in every society yet is in steep decline globally. Is this it for longterm intimate relationships?

Edited by Sam Dresser

At 17, John Humphrey Noyes thought a lot about women. An awkward teenager with a gangly neck and slouching shoulders, he fretted over how good looks were the key to success, especially when pursuing women. And he was shy. ‘So unreasonable and excessive is my bashfulness,’ he wrote in his journal, ‘that I fully believe that I could face a battery of cannon with less trepidation than I could a room full of ladies with whom I was unacquainted.’ Little did he know that he would go on to have sex with dozens of women, fathering children with at least nine in a ten-year period.

Noyes was born in 1811. His father was a Congressman for Vermont. His mother worked to instil in her son a religious reverence, hoping that he would become a ‘minister of the Everlasting Gospel’. In 1831, her wish seemed likely to come true. Noyes, then 20, announced that he would devote himself to the service of God’s truth, and entered a seminary in Andover, Massachusetts. Rather than accepting his teachers’ doctrine, however, he became consumed with the revivalist furore sweeping the northeast like a prairie fire. He left Andover for Yale University and started an uproar when he began preaching Perfectionism, the heretical notion that a religious life must be free of sin. Argumentative and charismatic, Noyes became a local celebrity and attracted small crowds of supporters, opponents and gawkers.

It was around this time that Noyes met Abigail Merwin. He was 22; she was 30. It’s hard to find details about Merwin, other than that she was smart, beautiful and modest, and had dark-grey eyes. Many of Noyes’s descriptions of her are saturated with ecstatic religious imagery. During a period when he stopped eating and sleeping and instead wandered manic through the streets of lower Manhattan, he envisioned her ‘standing, as it were, on the pinnacle of the universe, in the glory of an angel’ (although, in his mania, he wondered whether she was actually the devil incarnate).

Merwin was Noyes’s first follower, and he loved her. In his Confessions of Religious Experience (1849), he admitted that ‘she was undoubtedly the person to whom I was attached more than any other person on earth’. He was drawn to her beauty, modesty and boldness but, just as importantly, he drew inspiration from her company. ‘Abigail Merwin was my first companion in the faith of holiness,’ he wrote. ‘It was natural that I should regard her with peculiar interest and confidence.’

[ click to continue reading at AEON ]

Posted on March 30, 2020 by Editor

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The Man Who Made The World Wash Its Hands

Posted on March 28, 2020 by Editor

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Curly Neal Gone

from ESPN

Globetrotters legend Fred ‘Curly’ Neal dies at 77

Fred “Curly” Neal, the face of the Harlem Globetrotters for 22 years, died Thursday morning in Houston at the age of 77, the team announced on Twitter.

Neal, with his slick ballhandling skills, recognizable shaved head and playful banter, in 2008 became just the fifth Globetrotters player to have his jersey retired, joining Wilt Chamberlain, Marques Haynes, Meadowlark Lemon and Goose Tatum. His jersey was raised to the rafters of Madison Square Garden during a special ceremony.

He also was presented with the Globetrotters’ prestigious “Legends” ring in 1993 for making “a major contribution to the success and the development of the Globetrotters organization.” He had continued to make appearances for the team as an “Ambassador of Goodwill.”

[ click to continue reading at ESPN ]

Posted on March 27, 2020 by Editor

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Gen-X Becomes Gen-Q

from NBC News

Coronavirus quarantine? Gen X was made for this. Boomers and Gen Z, not so much.

We Gen Xers will take our time in the spotlight however we can get it — and hope that means more people listen to our advice on venturing out: Just Say No.

By Megan Gerhardt

Image: Yes, a global pandemic has now become a generational issue -- as Baby Boomers, Gen X, Millennials and Zoomers all respond to the growing crisis in their own special ways.
Yes, a global pandemic has now become a generational issue, as baby boomers, Gen Xers, millennials and zoomers all respond to the growing crisis in their own special ways.Chelsea Stahl / NBC News

In every crisis, there is an opportunity. Amid a global pandemic, it looks like my own Gen X has finally found ours. As the generation raised in the age of stranger danger and Just Say No, our inherent risk aversion is finally being recognized as a great strength and asset to the survival of the species.

Our independent streak was fostered by our need to fend for ourselves while our boomer parents toiled for long hours at work, making us more than comfortable with self-reliance and an afternoon spent on the couch playing video games. Now, for the first time in our lives, the question “Why can’t everyone be more like Generation X?” is being uttered.

And we Gen Xers have been quick to pounce on the moment. “Shout out to Gen X, the only generation who can keep our asses at home without being told, the motherf***ing latchkey kids, the generation used to being neglected by f***ing everyone,” writer Lauren Hough declared in a self-congratulatory tweet last week. “We’ll be the only ones left.”

The best minds of my generation quickly responded to Hough with more backpatting. “As an X’er, I feel like my whole life has led up to this important moment when my nation will call upon me to do nothing,” replied one tweeter. Another added: “We survived Reagan, the crack epidemic, the AIDS epidemic, the War on Drugs, mass incarceration, the S&L collapse all the while living on nothing but PB&J and ennui. The other generations should follow our lead on this one.”

[ click to continue reading at NBC ]

Posted on March 26, 2020 by Editor

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Stuart Gordon Gone

from DEADLINE

Stuart Gordon Dies: Cult Horror Director Known For ‘Re-Animator’ & ‘From Beyond’ Was 72

By Andreas Wiseman

Re-Animator filmmaker Stuart Gordon has died aged 72, his reps have confirmed. Cause of death was not disclosed.

Known for 1980’s cult horrors including Re-Animator and From Beyond, Gordon also worked in indie theater and founded the successful Organic Theater Company with his wife, Carolyn Purdy-Gordon.

Gordon was a co-creator of the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids franchise, producing the film’s sequel and writing on the TV series. He directed films including Christopher Lambert starrer Fortress, Stephen Dorff movie Space Truckers and William H. Macy film Edmond. He wrote movies including Abel Ferrara’s Body Snatchers.

[ click to continue reading at DEADLINE ]

Posted on March 25, 2020 by Editor

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Telephoning Returning

from DNYUZ

I Just Called to Say … the Phone Call Is Back

The other night my friend Margot called. It’s not unusual for me to hear from Margot — we’ve been friends for more than 30 years, email frequently, have dinner every month or two, and I stay over at her house whenever I’m in town. But Margot never calls. Practically no one does; my few surviving telephonic friendships antedate the internet. But Margot has a cold, and because her husband is immunocompromised, she’d had to quarantine herself in their guest room; she was, in effect, the invalid mother confined to her room upstairs in some Victorian novel. She’d been just about to email me when she thought, why would I email? and picked up the phone.

Once I’d ascertained that it wasn’t an emergency, her call was a pleasant surprise. We talked for half an hour or so, and it cheered us both in a dark, uncertain time.

Inspired by our conversation, I started surprising other people, in these first few days of quarantine, by calling them up just to chat. They, too, seemed pleasantly surprised. We’d talk for a half-hour, 45 minutes, an hour or more — about what a weird, unprecedented time it is, how disastrous to have no one competent in charge in the crisis, how much food we have, what the local stores are like, how seriously we’re taking the restrictions on our movements, how it affects our relationships (do you hastily break up rather than be trapped for months with the wrong person? Is a pandemic a good excuse to reconcile with an ex?). We made jokes about it and laughed together from opposite coasts, like kids cracking up at a funeral.

[ click to continue reading at DNYUZ ]

Posted on March 24, 2020 by Editor

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Drive-in Revival

from AFP via Yahoo! News

Seoul (AFP) – A long queue of cars forms in front of a drive-in cinema in Seoul, as South Koreans look for safer spaces to enjoy a movie without the risk of contracting the coronavirus raging across the world.

Box office numbers in South Korea — which has 8,897 confirmed virus cases — have plummeted in recent weeks due to the epidemic, with authorities urging the public to avoid large crowds.

But at Park Dong-ju’s drive-in cinema, moviegoers can enjoy a film from the comfort of their cars, parked in front of a large outdoor screen.

“We’ve had a 10-20 percent increase in sales for weekdays, and sell out on weekends,” Park said, adding: “We’re definitely getting many more calls and internet inquiries after the coronavirus outbreak.”

[ click to continue reading at Yahoo! News ]

Posted on March 22, 2020 by Editor

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COVID Kills Quinoa and Kale

from Bloomberg via Yahoo! News

Americans Drop Kale and Quinoa to Lock Down With Chips and Oreos

by Jen Skerritt, Lydia Mulvany and Isis Almeida

Out with the Tuscan kale and acai berries, in with the Spam and popcorn.

In a stark reversal, American shoppers who were taking up healthier eating are gravitating back to old ways as they hunker down to weather the coronavirus pandemic. They are loading up on shelf-stable items from canned meat and soup to pretzels and Kraft Macaroni & Cheese as they comply with orders to stay home.

The shift back from healthier fare toward traditional staples may boost the fortunes of packaged food companies, which have been struggling with lagging sales as consumers opted for fresher alternatives.

General Mills Inc., Tyson Foods Inc., Campbell Soup Co. and Kraft Heinz Co. saw sales gains between 10% and 20% in the rolling four weeks that ended March 8 for items such as soup and breakfast food, Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Diana Rosero-Pena said in a Thursday report, citing IRI data. Hormel Food Corp.’s sales of Spam increased as much as 37% and Oreo-maker Mondelez International Inc. saw growth in the sales of cookies and crackers.

Americans aren’t holding back on treating themselves, either. Popcorn sales rose nearly 48% in the week ended March 14, compared with a year earlier, while pretzel sales were up 47% and potato chip sales surged 30%, according to Nielsen data.

[ click to continue reading at Yahoo! News ]

Posted on March 21, 2020 by Editor

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