Web Miscellany: Compilation #96

Hello, friend! How are you? Frankly, I’m exhausted, and that’s all. Life is going alright: I’m three weeks deep at a great new job and my East Coast colleagues are giving me a tiny taste of autumn with their mustard- and rust-colored sweaters. (I can almost smell the cinnamon and pumpkin spice through the screen!)

I’m currently donning a 72-hour holter monitor to monitor my heart, as my body seems to be trying to set a record for knocking me unconscious while maximizing bumps and bruises on the way down. The demonic, house-shaking sneezes have returned and I’m back to sleeping 11 hours a night. Just when I thought I was on the up-and-up… it seems I’ve been tossed another curve ball.

I hope that your the week ahead is good to you. Here are a few links from around the web. Feel free to share anything interesting you’ve stumbled upon in the comments.


  1. Food for thought: “For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.” – H. L. Mencken
  2. From the archives: A Moment In Someone Else’s Shoes. “I’m unvaccinated… My immune system’s response to the virus could kill me; my immune system’s response to the vaccine could also kill me. I want the vaccine, but my doctors have said no. I’m sure I’m not alone.”
  3. Sweet beats: Here’s what it sounds like when rhubarb grows in the dark. I’m watching a documentary on how Victorian railways helped to shape modern Britain. Two fascinating tidbits included the invent of “baby farmers” who collected the children of unwed mothers for a fee, and the ubiquity of rhubarb beyond Yorkshire due to rapid transport.
  4. Literary tattoos: I don’t have tattoos and don’t intend to get any, but I love admiring others’ meaningful ink. I really dig these literary tattoos.
  5. Welfare mice: One of the more famous ethologists in recent decades was John B. Calhoun, best known for his mouse experiments in the 1960s. To what extent do the mouse utopia lessons apply to humans?
  6. Fun fact: The shape of Pringles is called a hyperbolic paraboloid. In calculus, a hyperbolic paraboloid is a doubly-curved surface that resembles the shape of a saddle. This shape makes it easier to stack the chips and minimises the possibility of breaking during transport. Due to its saddle shape, there is no predictable way to break it up, which apparently increases that crunchy feeling. I haven’t eaten Pringles in over two decades, but I’m a sucker for math facts.
  7. Melodious despair: The Helsinki Complaints Choir sings a collection of quibbles in a harmonious tune. This is just brilliant.

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