The Overload of Public Information, and More

The Worst Kind of InformationMedium

“It takes a certain kind of brain to appreciate the emptiness of public information. Most of us are too earnest, which is to say most people are better adapted to the time in which they evolved. Most of us have stone-age brains. We regard all information as though it is rock hard. When Colin Powell told the world that the Iraqis had ‘weapons of mass destruction,’ most people — trapped in the noise of modern life — believed him. They took it as information of the same quality as the alarm sounded by the fellow who ran into camp warning of an imminent attack.”

The Death of Adulthood in American CultureThe New York Times

“What all of these shows grasp at, in one way or another, is that nobody knows how to be a grown-up anymore. Adulthood as we have known it has become conceptually untenable. It isn’t only that patriarchy in the strict, old-school Don Draper sense has fallen apart. It’s that it may never really have existed in the first place, at least in the way its avatars imagined. Which raises the question: Should we mourn the departed or dance on its grave?”

The Awful Reign of the Red DeliciousThe Atlantic

“His words contain the paradox of the Red Delicious: alluring yet undesirable, the most produced and arguably the least popular apple in the United States. It lurks in desolation. Bumped around the bottom of lunch bags as schoolchildren rummage for chips or shrink-wrapped Rice Krispies treats. Waiting by the last bruised banana in a roadside gas station, the only produce for miles. Left untouched on hospital trays, forlorn in the fruit bowl at hotel breakfast buffets, bereft in nests of gift-basket raffia.”

On Bigfoot’s TrailInlander

“There was a time five or six years ago when Skahan would get calls from his neighbors and coworkers, asking him to look into strange sounds they’d heard or things they’d seen, and he’d chase every report of a possible Bigfoot encounter on every corner of the reservation, hoping for a photograph or a video. He appeared on TV shows and national radio programs. He did talks at schools, museums and summer camps. He invested $25,000 of his own money into tracking equipment, like his thermal camera, and research expeditions. He auditioned for Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot. Skahan spent so many weekends in the woods with other big-name Bigfoot investigators, he grew distant from his kids. His wife eventually left him.”

Naked sushi is an affront to socially awkward people everywhereNational Post

“In a former role covering city politics and culture, I found myself at an event that actually included a naked woman offering sushi off her body. My first thought was that the display was enormously impractical; in order to maintain the woman’s relative nakedness, she only offered about 10 pieces of sushi at a time. (There was a man next to her replacing the pieces when the offerings got low.) Such a scant and labouriously slow method of catering will not satiate a room of hungry event-goers, especially when most people are too polite to take that last tuna roll.”

Bad Managers Talk, Good Managers WriteiDone This Blog

“When managers write, you create work product — white papers, product requirement documents, FAQs, presentations — that lasts and is accessible to everyone in the organization. From marketing to sales to QA to engineering, everyone has a document off which they can work and consult.”

Olive Garden’s unlimited pasta pass ‘black market’ is actually a perfect illustration of why ticket-scalping worksThe Washington Post

“This, in essence, is the dirty economic secret of scalping, whether we’re talking about pasta or Beyonce tickets or anything else: Concert promoters and other sellers are quick to blame the scalpers for inflating prices, or companies, such as eBay and Craigslist, for failing to police them. In reality, the best way to stop people from reselling things is to charge more for those things to begin with. Frequently, the reason for charging less is a little nefarious: It means people are more likely to spend money at the event itself. (If I’m paying something like $1.50 for a figure-ruining marathon of pasta, it’s easy to justify, say, a couple $8 glasses of wine.)”

Photo courtesy of Neal Lantela

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