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The Last Weekend of the Summer
I say make hay while the sun shines. Not in the same way weekends revved you and saved you in the past. But in a new way. In other words, this weekend, do something you’ve never done before. I’m not talking about climbing Mt. Everest here. Just some way others spend their weekends that you haven’t tried. Because none of us has an infinite number of weekends left, do we?
But don’t you dare go off with something new without your weekend fix of the Omnium-Gatherum. Some things should never change.
1. What 3 words. This is a new way to map the world. It’s an app, of course, and it’s much more accurate than street addresses. A group of four young Brits divided the world into 3 metre squares and gave each square a combination of three words. The Economist calls it “ingenious” and BBC claims it’s “the app that can save your life.”
2. A strange Venn Diagram. What do bank robbers, preachers, DJs, and mom taking off your sweater have in common? See here.
3. John Cleese has a new show. It’s called Cancel Me and it’s about Cancel Culture. It debuts on Britain’s Channel 4 in the Fall, and as Cleese, who has 5.6 million Twitter followers, says: “The main thing is to try to be kind. But that then becomes a sort of indulgence of the most over-sensitive people in your culture, the people who are most easily upset. I don’t think we should organise a society around the sensibilities of the most easily upset people because then you have a very neurotic society.”
4. The fat lady sits. The number of seats in opera houses is shrinking, but the size of those seats is growing. The San Francisco Opera is installing 12 “bariatric seats” for Extra Large patrons who weigh up to 300 pounds.
5. Are you an energetic alien? They walk among us; in fact, they are by far our most productive people. They can focus deeply on cognitive tasks for 4-6 hours a day. They are full of beans, obsessed with their work and can function well on little sleep. See who you recognize here.
6. Why do we work so much? It seems because we demand so damn much. Here’s a wonderful podcast (and transcript) with the New York Times’ Ezra Klein and anthropologist James Suzman, author of “Work, A Deep History from the Stone Age to the Age of Robots.”
7. Down the rabbit-hole of arts and culture we go. I’ve mentioned Google Arts and Culture before. But now, it’s a vast cave of fun and diversion around everything to do with the arts, from tours of 2,000 museums and 10,000 artworks, to backstage at the Paris Opera and in the cockpit of the Hubble Control Centre.
8. I knew none of this. You too? Here are more than a dozen “life hacks”, tips on little things that can make a difference in your home and your life.
10. Not just a New York State of Mind. A new New York State of Mind. Filmed over all five boroughs with some of New York’s top stars, who turn Billy Joel’s song into an anthem of recovery.