“The crowd was often subdued; at times, it seemed almost as if the fans might break out into golf claps. American crowd staples failed to translate and rouse them — not the part of the cha-cha slide that instructs everybody to clap their hands, and certainly not the Baha Men’s query, “Who let the dogs out?” There was silence where each responding “Who?” should have been.”—Nets and Kings Visit China as N.B.A. Practices Basketball Diplomacy - NYTimes.com
The trainman couldn’t believe what he was seeing. He shouted to the other men working in the yard to come over. Within a few moments, a group had gathered around. They gawked through the window in slack-jawed amazement. Dark-skinned men and women wearing hardly any clothes peered back at them. One, a child with skin as black as coal, waved. Where, one of the trainmen wondered aloud, were they going?
“The senior managing director – a top-ranking banker – walked onto the crowded elevator, focus fixed on her Blackberry, pressed the elevator button and farted loudly. As the smell filled the elevator, as others nervously coughed, some covering up giggles, her focus stayed on the Blackberry. Four floors later she left, commenting to a colleague, “The elevators are vile. The janitors are always on some break.” Another MD turned to me: “That’s why she earns the big bucks.” “Being able to fart?” I asked. “No, you idiot. Audacity. Audacity so great that you can fart on the elevator and blame it on someone else.””—The audacity to ‘fart in the elevator’ and the lingering anger over the AIG bailout | Money | The Guardian
“Price-gouging for government files is one way that local, state and federal agencies have responded to requests for potentially embarrassing information they may not want released. Open records laws are designed to give the public access to government records at little or no cost, and have historically exposed waste, wrongdoing and corruption.”—Ferguson demands high fees to turn over city files
In an alternate universe, punk rock never happened. Instead, marginalized teens became addicted to a radical fitness program called Flexercise, largely heralded as the world’s deadliest pyramid scheme.
“My father’s brother, Ismail al-Ghoul, 60, was not a member of Hamas. His wife, Khadra, 62, was not a militant of Hamas. Their sons, Wael, 35, and Mohammed, 32, were not combatants for Hamas. Their daughters, Hanadi, 28, and Asmaa, 22, were not operatives for Hamas, nor were my cousin Wael’s children, Ismail, 11, Malak, 5, and baby Mustafa, only 24 days old, members of Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine or Fatah. Yet, they all died in the Israeli shelling that targeted their home at 6:20 a.m. on Sunday morning.”—Never ask me about peace again - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East
'...Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Oakland and Detroit are drawing on their histories of race-related activism or factory shutdowns and using those details to attract business, tourists and new residents. They say the ups and downs of the past helped make them what they are today.'
“. Once the boys’ disappearance was known, troops began a massive, 18-day search-and-rescue operation, entering thousands of homes, arresting and interrogating hundreds of individuals, racing against the clock. Only on July 1, after the boys’ bodies were found, did the truth come out: The government had known almost from the beginning that the boys were dead. It maintained the fiction that it hoped to find them alive as a pretext to dismantle Hamas’ West Bank operations.”—How Politics and Lies Triggered an Unintended War in Gaza – Forward.com
“The Brazilians should be inclined to fix Brazil because Brazil needs fixing, not because they lost a game, of a kind that they will very likely win the next time they play one like it. Nations are not humiliated in this manner, though sometimes the pride of their rulers—or of eleven players and a coach—may be.”—Adam Gopnik on Brazil’s shocking World Cup loss to Germany, and the lexicon of national humiliation: http://nyr.kr/1trZyMa (via newyorker)