The 2017 Tournament of Books begins March 8.

The 2017 Tournament of Books is coming.

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U.S. Counties and Zip Codes, 2015. Credit: Paula Scher.

Some beautiful acrylics by Taiwanese artist Huang Po-Hsun. You can find more at Asia Contemporary Art Buyer, or his Flickr page.

h/t boooooooom

Since 50 percent of farmers are undocumented, an impending labor crunch threatens American agriculture.

Americans are spurning farm jobs. As a result, crops in at least 20 states rot because there aren't enough workers to pick them. Deporting millions and building a wall would send farms, and our food, into a full-on crisis.


How drones, gimbals, and other technological advances have helped the BBC make its beloved nature documentaries more cinematic.

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Sprawling feature on the geography of Japanese internment maps incredible displacement.

Included are maps and charts of San Francisco's housing discrimination, Japanese farm productivity before World War II, relocation routes, and internment locations today.

The highest-traffic routes led families hundreds of miles from their homes in jarring dislocations such as from Seattle to the Arizona desert, or San Francisco to rural Arkansas.


Huffington Post published an article about what would happen if someone read the wrong winner at the Oscars—and then it actually happened last night.

In case you missed it, Faye Dunaway read La La Land right over Warren Beatty's incredulity. As predicted, the auditors knew something was wrong immediately, but all signs also point to a backstage mistake on their part. And it's anyone's guess why it took Jimmy Kimmel so long to intervene. 

Steve Harvey should feel a little vindicated.

During such scary periods, you should never forget two things: First, widespread fear is your friend as an investor, because it serves up bargain purchases. Second, personal fear is your enemy. It will also be unwarranted.

In his annual letter to investors, Warren Buffett counsels on how to use fear to your financial benefit.
↩︎ Quartz

Italy revolutionizes and scandalizes the sport of rugby by "rucking" less.

A rugby match is built on "rucks," what happens when a player is tackled to the ground. In an 80-minute game, it happens about 200 times. The ball-carrier goes down, everybody huddles around him, then he almost always manages to pass the ball to his teammates, setting up for another offensive play. 

But what happens when the defensive side doesn't send anybody to the scrimmage, as Italy preferred not to in an international match just yesterday?

It caused chaos. Since no rucks were formed when an Englishman was wrestled to the ground, there was no offside line during those plays. Subsequently, Italian defenders were free to wander around to the English side of the tackle and wait for the ball to arrive, since all passes must go backwards. The sport was turned completely on its head. At times, it was like watching a computer game with a glitch, or a bizarre version of American football in which the defensive end gets to stand next to the quarterback.

England still won, 36-15, but that didn't exactly quiet the howling.


Why most (ballet) dancers almost always turn clockwise and most athletes—figure skaters, aerial skiiers, divers—turn counterclockwise is unknown. But a personal investigation into the phenomenon makes for interesting reading.

The difference in turning preference between ballet dancers and athletes in the above list is stark: dancers overwhelmingly prefer turning CW while athletes choose CCW. Why do dancers prefer CW while athletes choose CCW? Also, in ballet, why are there no women that predominately turn CCW on stage? I asked several former dancers who thought my question is strange because the answer is obvious: “Dancers turn CW because it is natural.” Information on the web suggests that the CCW figure skating world has the same view but opposite direction; in a right-handed dominated world, it is natural that skaters favor the CCW direction.

Credit: Kate Ter Haar

The photo shows "Stage 7" at the Warner Brothers lot in Burbank, Calif.—"known as Lucky Seven, according to tour guide John Kourounis. That's because three Warner Bros. best picture winners—The Life of Emile Zola, My Fair Lady, and Casablanca—and 10 best picture nominees were shot here."

NPR's Susan Stamberg takes a tour:

More Features at TMN