News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets


News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets
News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets
News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

John Mew is a 91-year-old orthodontist from the United Kingdom. His face is long and narrow; his hazel eyes rest in deep sockets. Atop his head he wears a yellowing toupee, its presence betrayed by a fringe of talcum-white hair poking out at his ears. In his youth, Mew navigated the British Isles as a competitive sailor, raced Formula One cars and modeled period costumes for the BBC; now he walks with a cane, but he’s still vigorous. He lives alone in a castle of his own making, which sits upon a man-made lake in a secluded forest in southeast England. When I visited him there last March, he ushered me across a reedy moat and into the kitchen. Walking through the home, which he built in the 1990s, we passed by a medieval drawing room with intentionally slanted walls and climbed staircases in a turret, whose stone steps Mew had sanded down unevenly in hopes of lending them the appearance of age. In a dining room he called the Great Hall, grotesques protruded from oak beams near the ceiling — all of them carved by Mew himself. He pointed out to me that the earliest carvings tended to have lopsided faces while the latter ones did not, as he’d refined his technique on the fly. “It’s all part of the ambience,” he told me, grinning. “Why do crooked things look better?”

But if crookedness lends a castle its beauty, it does the opposite to a face — and nothing concerns Mew more than the proliferation of ugly faces, which he considers a modern epidemic. For the past 50 years, he has championed an unorthodox cure, based on a theory about the cause and treatment of crooked teeth, which he calls “orthotropics.” If correct, Mew’s theory would upend many of the fundamental beliefs of mainstream orthodontic practice.

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

News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

Aliens are calling me, but first I have to buy Lunchables. Soon, I’ll be heading into the Nevada desert. I will not be alone. It is pre-pandemic September, and tens of thousands of seekers are reported to be descending on Hiko and Rachel, two no-stoplight towns 150 miles north of Las Vegas. The two map specks are the closest civilian outposts to Area 51, a highly guarded military installation where, legend says, a hangar holds a gravity-propelled craft that travels between galaxies and through wormholes based on technology acquired from aliens and, according to one rock star, Nazi scientists who escaped to Argentina.

Why is everyone descending on a land hospitable only to the giant hairy scorpion? Like all good things in America, it is because of a Facebook meme. The locals were not amused. There are rumors of homesteaders planning to light up their property and shoo off interlopers with birdshot. Signs heading out of Vegas on Highway 15 warn pilgrims to check their tire pressure and sanity. The Nevada Highway Patrol says it is advisable to bring your own water, toilet paper, and maybe an extra 10-gallon jerry can of gas.

I have made the proper preparations. I rent an SUV behemoth since I’ll be sleeping in my car. I pay $51 a night — get it? Area 51? — for a coveted desert parking lot. No spooky pasture with circling vultures for me. The North Las Vegas Walmart has everything I will need. I pile pounds of salted meat, Progresso soup, and an $11 sleeping bag that feels like it was filled with asbestos into my cart. Loaded up, I point my beast north toward Hiko.

I drive for two hours, watching my cell signal fade and then vanish. Alas, the UFO community’s “We are not alone” motto turns out to be empty rhetoric. I am completely alone. This is strange since I was told State Highway 93 would be packed with fellow travelers seeking other life-forms, perhaps kinder ones who watched less professional sports.

On April 27th, the United States Navy released three videos shot by naval aviators off the California coast in 2004. The footage showed unidentified aerial phenomenon — the new hip terms for UFOs — streaking across the radar screens of F/A-18 Super Hornets while Navy pilots hooped and hollered at the mysterious images.

Read the rest of this article at: RollingStone

Tuscany Tote in Midnight

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DONALD O’BRIEN WAS EXCITED when he got the news that his transfer had been cleared — as excited as any incarcerated person can be about staying in prison, he might clarify. Late last year he learned that he’d be moving from a maximum security facility near the U.S.-Mexico border to the California Institution for Men, a primarily minimum security prison about 40 miles east of Los Angeles. He hoped it would be his last stop before freedom.

O’Brien, 56, had just been denied parole, and he hoped the transfer to less secure housing would look good when he goes before the board again. But more than that, he just needed to pass the time. Having spent all but a couple years of his adult life imprisoned, he knew that a change of scenery would make a difference. And while Chino looks nothing like coastal Santa Monica, where he grew up, something in the air made it feel more like home.

Read the rest of this article at: The Intercept

News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

On October 18, 2019, a New York Times standards editor emailed seven other Times editors to alert them to the existence of a new Twitter account that they would soon grow to respect—and, at times, resent. According to the characterization of one of the editors on the email, the message advised its recipients “that there was a lawyer on Twitter aggressively pointing out typos, and that we should consider following him.” A little more than a month after the Twitter account’s creation on September 16, The New York Times had taken note of @nyttypos, or Typos of the New York Times.

Anyone who followed @nyttypos that day soon got a feel for the flavor of its tweets. On October 19, @nyttypos spotted a “happened” instead of a “happen” in a story about Brexit; a missing space and a picture of three people captioned with five names in a story about TikTok clubs; a missing comma and a “statue” in place of a “statute” in a story about President Donald Trump’s attempt to host the G7 Summit at his own Doral resort; a subject-verb agreement error in a story about Venezuela’s water quality; a misplaced comma in a story about Bernie Sanders accepting an endorsement from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; and a missing space between quotation marks and a quote in a story about Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Although the account linked to a “nice, probably typo-free story” in the love section, it also found time to editorialize about the supposedly sorry state of the Times. “It’s kind of a shame that virtually each and every piece of content the Times produces, even the pretty great ones like this, has a typo in it,” @nyttypos tweeted about an opinion piece that contained a wayward word. On the same day, a story about a German YouTuber that contained a duplicated phrase prompted the observation “At times I really have a hard time believing that this paper is edited at all.” Between typos, @nyttypos engaged in a debate about the proper way to form plurals—“M.V.P.s” or “M.V.P.’s”—in support of the position that “Apostrophes don’t pluralize!”

Read the rest of this article at: The Ringer

News 08.20.20 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets

Sitting in the computer room of Open Arms drop-in centre, a homeless shelter in Kingston, Jamaica, I turned on my recorder and asked Jason to tell me about his life there. In his distinct east London accent, he described arguments and fights with other residents – about chores, use of the showers, missing possessions. Then, checking no one was around, he complained about the management, claiming that they spoke to him like a child and had threatened to kick him out. Nor did he feel safe when he left the shelter. “People are trying to kill me down here. I need to get back to England,” he said. But having been deported from the UK, and finding himself destitute in Jamaica, he had few options. Jason had been exiled home.

Jason was born in 1984 in Kingston. When he was about five, his mother and grandmother moved to the UK, and so for most of his childhood he was raised by his aunties in Kingston. He had a good childhood in Jamaica. For his wider family, though, the option to move to the UK was viewed as “the dream ticket”, and so, in August 2000, when he was 15, Jason and his 13-year-old brother were put on a flight to London to join their mother. (The official story was that they were just planning to visit their grandmother for a few weeks.) This was the first time Jason had ever been on a plane, and it remains the only commercial flight he has taken.

Jason’s reunion with his mother, who he hadn’t seen for 10 years, was not easy. Her partner was suspicious of Jason, accusing him of stealing things from the house and chasing girls. After just two months at a secondary school in Ilford in east London, Jason got into a fight and was expelled. His mother then kicked him out of the house. “I had my possessions in 12 JD bags,” he recalled. “I put them on top of a roof – of somebody’s house. I didn’t have no friends, where was I supposed to go?”

In February 2001, six months after arriving in London, Jason’s visitor visa expired, turning him into an “illegal immigrant”. Without access to employment, housing support or welfare benefits, he had to survive on the streets. For most of the next 14 years, Jason was homeless, sleeping on buses and loitering around London’s West End, trying to make conversation with tourists, offering to help find them tickets or drugs, or just seeking warmth and company in brightly lit arcades. “I was in and out of police stations,” Jason said. “My life was like being in handcuffs.” His offences were crimes of vagrancy: theft, being drunk and disorderly, unpaid rail fares and fines, and skipping bail because he had no fixed address.

As Jason was accumulating these minor convictions, he was also making friends, developing a London accent, and coming to call the city his home. “I never had a home in England, but I made a home in the places I chilled in, like Romford for a little while, and central London. I can call that home,” he said.

In late 2013, Jason took a trip to Wales with a friend, to get away from London for a few days, but after a fight with some locals outside a pub, Jason and his friend were arrested. At that time, the police and immigration authorities were beginning to share information in new ways, and after Jason’s details were run through the immigration database, the police in south Wales sent him to an immigration removal centre on the south coast of England.

Read the rest of this article at: The Guardian

P.S. previous articles & more by P.F.M.

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