A Pardon for Jack Johnson

May 25, 2018

Heavyweight Boxing Champion Jack Johnson, convicted in a unjust federal trial in 1913, was posthumously pardoned by President Donald Trump on Thursday. Mr. Johnson, the first African American boxing champion, was a victim of racism, and there has been a long campaign to right this historical wrong, complicated by Johnson’s history of adultery and domestic violence.

But remedying racial injustice doesn’t seem to be why Mr. Trump pardoned Jack Johnson. He did it because celebrity pal Sylvester Stallone asked him to, and because Mr. Johnson was “a truly legendary boxing champion, legendary athlete, and a person that, when people got to know him, they really liked him,” said the president. A flamboyant, womanizing, larger-than-life celebrity? Donald Trump can certainly relate to that.

And of course if Donald Trump can pardon a dead man, surely there’s hope for Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn ….

More:

“Trump’s pardon of Jack Johnson is not insignificant. But caring about racial injustice in 2018 would be more meaningful.” Eugene Scott, Washington Post

 

Video: Celebrity Jack Johnson conducts an unidentified jazz band, 1929. Alternate takes here.

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Building a Cabin

May 24, 2018

Watch Shawn James build a log cabin by himself in the Canadian woods. Okay, maybe his dog helped him a little.

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Leaky Boomer Bladders Mean Boom Times for Adult Diapers

May 23, 2018

Leaky Boomer Bladders Mean Boom Times for Adult Diapers

In ten years, sales of diapers for adults could surpass those for babies. While birthrates fall, life spans lengthen, and 1 in 3 adults – 80 percent of them women — have bladder control problems. Babies grow out of diapers, but incontinent adults don’t. Marketers at Kimberly-Clark and Procter & Gamble are doing their best to make adult diapers a mainstream item.

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NYC: In a Hurry? Get On a Bike.

May 22, 2018

NYC: In a Hurry? Get On a Bike.

” … a huge share of taxi and bike-share trips cover comparable distances in New York City. In 2014, nearly 34,000 trips were taken using the Citi Bike system per day, while more than 400,000 trips were made by taxi. About 55 percent of the taxi rides spanned less than two miles; so did the average bike-share trip.”

“On average, the researchers found that taxis hailed within range of a Citi Bike station were a slightly faster option than grabbing the rental bike. But when travel distances were shorter, and at times when roads were more likely to be congested, the difference in travel times dropped. On weekdays, more than half of trips shorter than 3 kilometers (about 1.8 miles) went as fast or faster on Citi Bike than in a cab. Citi Bike’s advantage is stronger as trips cover less distance: between 20 and 36 percent of weekday trips shorter than 2 kilometers (about 1.2 miles) went faster on rented spokes than in a backseat.”

— “In New York City, Bike Share Is Faster Than Cabs When It Matters,” Laura Bliss, CityLab

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Commuting is bad for your health

May 21, 2018

It’s not your imagination: commuting is bad for your health. Kimberly Mas explains.

More:

“Your Commute is Slowly Killing You,” Eric Jaffe, CityLab

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How Funny Is Another Mans Pain

May 20, 2018

“How Funny Is Another Mans Pain,” by The Meltdown. Written by vocalist Simon Burke and saxophonist Lachlan McLean. Great band out of Melbourne, Australia.

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Cry Baby

May 20, 2018

“Cry Baby,” written by Cee Lo Green and recorded by him in 2011. In the music video, Jaleel White (best known for playing Steve Urkel) performs as Cee Lo Green, and Tanya Chisholm plays his girlfriend.

Cee Lo Green website

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Nearly Forgot my Broken Heart

May 20, 2018

“Nearly Forgot my Broken Heart,” written and performed by Chris Cornell, 2015.

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Working on the Building

May 20, 2018

“Working On The Building,” by the Highway QCs, late 1950s.

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All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down

May 19, 2018

“All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down,” written by Raul Malo and Al Anderson, performed by The Mavericks, with Flaco Jiménez on accordion, 1996. Video directed by Gerry Wenner.

The Mavericks website

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