News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets


News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets
News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets
News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

Many of us have been wondering lately what Jerry Seinfeld, the sitcom character, would be doing in this current era of home quarantines and social distancing: how his extreme fastidiousness, self-centeredness and constant scrutiny of quotidian details (not to mention the hyperbolic traits of his fictional friends and neighbors) would be stretched to hilarious extremes in an environment of isolation and anxiety.

However, the real Jerry Seinfeld — the one who gave up the sitcom long ago to focus on an occasional talk show and a peerless stand-up career — is not the same guy. While he has been sheltering in place with his wife, Jessica, and their three children, he is as devoted as ever to his daily rituals and habits, and still inescapably prone to atomic-level observations of human behavior. But he is also self-conscious in a way that you never see in his act: He cracks jokes and then wonders whether it’s appropriate to do so or if people even want to laugh right now. These are difficult questions to wrestle with when you’re a comedian, and like everyone else, Seinfeld is trying to figure out who he is and what he should do now.

Read the rest of this article at: The New York Times

News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

The Week
The Music

It was the beginning of March when Don Smiley started planning for the worst. As the chief executive of Milwaukee’s Summerfest — which calls itself “the world’s largest music festival,” attracting 900,000 people over 11 days each year — Smiley was confronting a tidal wave of reports about the outbreak of COVID-19 in the U.S. With the news darkening, he began to seriously consider dismantling the event’s entire meticulous plan. In its 52-year history, Summerfest — which was set to include performances by artists from Justin Bieber to Guns N’ Roses this year — had never been canceled or postponed.

“The vibe was [like] walking on eggshells,” Smiley says. “I had my eye on it early, trying to convince friends of mine to keep their eye on it. Everyone’s phone was blowing up every five seconds with breaking news, breaking news, breaking news. Our entire company wasn’t sleeping well because of the uncertainty.”

In the first week of March, the novel coronavirus was not yet a pandemic halting the entire world in its tracks, but concerts across Europe and Asia had all but ceased, a number of upcoming festivals outside the U.S. had been canceled, and nearly 100 cases of the virus had been confirmed in the U.S., including in California. Then came a rash of new reported cases and revelations that the virus had already been spreading through American communities, undetected by nearly nonexistent testing, for weeks.

On March 5th, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez shut down the Ultra Music Festival out of “an abundance of caution,” while emphasizing that it shouldn’t be a “cause for alarm.” The next day, the city of Austin shuttered South by Southwest, one of the largest annual conferences in the world. The cancellation of SXSW, which brings in some $356 million for the city each year, was the first huge shockwave, triggering new urgency in conversations about other music events.

Seeing SXSW go down, Smiley knew things would only worsen. “We could’ve sat on those dates and hoped for the best, but hope wasn’t really a plan for us,” he says. The Summerfest team was faced with a $186 million question. Across the country, other concert promoters, including industry-dominating giants Live Nation and AEG, were scrambling as well. Artists, managers, tour crews, and others in the concert business sat nervously on the sidelines, waiting.

Read the rest of this article at: RollingStone

Pop into something comfy and let’s get started!” This is how Adriene Mishler, YouTube’s biggest yoga guru, begins many of her videos. For those of us who are not spending our quarantine days writing an update of King Lear or attempting to follow along with Barry’s Bootcamp on Instagram, Mishler’s just-show-up approach to yoga is a comfort and a welcome distraction. In recent months, she has been described as “the patron saint of quarantine” (Paper magazine), “the most influential yoga teacher on the planet” (Refinery29), and “Our saviour” (a fan on Twitter).

Mishler was already huge before the pandemic – her channel, which has more than 7 million subscribers, is the first to pop up when you search for “yoga” on YouTube – but the lockdown has catapulted her to a new level of fame. Fans on social media recommend their favourite videos, post charcoal drawings of her and express their undying devotion to her for keeping them sane. One devotee even built a digital replica of her home studio in the video game Animal Crossing. There are countless memes about her, as well as ones about her dog, a blue heeler, or Australian cattle dog, named Benji, who frequently makes cameo appearances lounging beside the mat, or wandering into shot.

Read the rest of this article at: The Guardian

News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

Choosing a good place to sleep should be simple. But along the Kinabatangan River in Borneo, the monkeys swinging through the trees lining the water’s edge are picky and rambunctious as they search for a spot that’s just right. Their lives can depend on it.

Monkeys, in general, prefer trees without a lot of cover so they can spy predators, such as clouded leopards. Some spots are safer than others—like the slender ends of long branches where a monkey is out of reach of most predators and could be shaken awake by a stealthy cat approaching. But there’s a downside—a monkey that snags a perch on a tapering limb hanging over the river could tumble into the water if the branch snaps.

“We did a GPS survey on the crocodiles; they hunt below trees,” says Benoît Goossens. We’re in a boat with several students, learning how to conduct a primate survey. Goossens, an ecologist and the boat’s pilot, points to a macaque settling onto the branch of a dead tree overhanging the river. “That one’s ripe for falling in and getting eaten by a croc.” A monkey squabble, though, is usually the reason for an unintended dive.

To spot monkeys, Goossens’s first instruction is: look for moving branches. Counting them is fairly straightforward too—at least from a boat on the river—since the monkeys are nicely silhouetted by the setting sun. Identifying individual species, however, takes practice.

Silvered langurs, for example, have triangular heads with tufts of hair sticking out the sides and growing up in a spiky tuft. They have long tails and very orange offspring. They’re the placid onlookers in this monkey world. They avoid the shenanigans in the nearby trees, where gray-brown long-tailed macaques bounce about like young children putting off the moment they wink out at night—jumping on beds, scurrying about the room, monkeying around until their little bodies give out.

Read the rest of this article at: Hakai Magazine

News 05.04.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

When Larry Roth returned to his Long Island home last May, from Louisville, he unpacked a pair of muddy boots and declared he would never clean them again. He and his family had bought cheap ponchos and galoshes at a Walmart the night before the Kentucky Derby, bracing for a sloppy Saturday at Churchill Downs. And the rains came as expected, soaking the masses in their finery, rendering the track a gooey mess. “It was a miserable day,” says Roth.

But when the 65-to-1 long shot colt that Roth co-owned, Country House, was named the most controversial winner in the 145-year history of the Derby, that mud took on a magical quality. The dirt-caked boots were going to be Roth’s prized souvenir from a day unlike any other in the annals of America’s greatest horse race.

Then his housekeeper saw them. And made the unilateral decision to wash them. The cherished Churchill soil was gone in an instant. Frustrating but fitting, given what would become of Country House’s career.

After 125 seconds of racing last May 4, then a 22-minute delay for a steward’s ruling that elevated the runner-up colt to first and disqualified Maximum Security, a garland of roses was laid across Country House’s shoulders. Then the winner of the 2019 Kentucky Derby all but disappeared.

He’d come up out of nowhere to win the Derby, then promptly returned there. Country House never ran another step. “That was it, his run through the [Churchill] stretch,” says the horse’s trainer, Bill Mott. “But that was a good one.”

Read the rest of this article at: Sports Illustrated

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