At BuzzFeed, in London. I exist plenty here but I’m also elsewhere.
Books I’m Reading
|6 Jun '20||Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America||Ibram X. Kendi|
|16 Apr '20||The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York||Robert A. Caro|
Films I’ve Seen Recently
|7 Jul '20||Da 5 Bloods||2020|
|30 Jun '20||Only God Forgives||2013|
|29 Jun '20||The Personal History of David Copperfield||2019|
|29 Jun '20||mid90s||2018|
|16 Jun '20||Training Day||2001|
See more about what I’m reading/watching here.
- 1 July 2020
A Case for Turning Empty Malls Into Housing
Developers are turning a wide swath of the 41-year-old shopping center into Avalon Alderwood Place, a 300-unit apartment complex with underground parking. The project won’t completely erase the shopping side of the development: Commercial tenants will still take up 90,000 square feet of retail. But when the new Alderwood reopens, which developers expect will happen by 2022, the focus will have shifted dramatically. One of the mall’s anchor department stores, Sears, shut down last year; in a sense, the apartment complex will be the new anchor.
— A Case for Turning Empty Malls Into Housing, Patrick Sisson in Citylab
- 22 June 2020
The Bosses Are In Their Country Houses
I was Ms. Jamieson’s editor at BuzzFeed News until earlier this year, and I couldn’t help thinking this was about me, since I headed up to Columbia County, N.Y., in early March, and so I called Ms. Jamieson, 34, an Australian native who lives in a studio in Bedford-Stuyvesant, to ask her what she meant.
“The biggest story in the world came to your front door and you left — that to me is insane,” she said, adding that her experience — the woman who works the front desk of her gym died, and she wrote about a funeral procession for another neighbor — has been essential to her reporting. “You left for your own personal safety and because it made you stressed and anxious.”
“I feel bad that I feel like everybody should feel absolutely self-loathing and shame,” she said.
I asked Ms. Jamieson if what she was feeling was rooted in a desire for justice, or for better journalism, or just free-floating, Australian-inflected rage.
“All of those things,” she said.
- 22 June 2020
In Praise of the Walking Coffee
Walking doesn’t improve the taste of coffee, but coffee improves the experience of being in the world. It blunts the harsher edges. Without coffee, there is public space and private space. With coffee, the whole city is your living room.
Usually, I think only rich people and babies get to blur these sorts of boundaries. Babies get security blankets; rich people get status sweatpants. The rest of us are supposed to generally contain ourselves.
— In Praise of the Walking Coffee, Rachel Sugar in Grub Street
- 15 June 2020
What If Working From Home Goes on forever?
Beyond the feverish pace of online work, employees are experiencing some problems specific to video what has popularly come to be called Zoom fatigue. In late March I spoke via Zoom to Jessica Lindl, a vice president at Unity, a company that makes software for creating and operating interactive 3-D environments. Before the pandemic, Unity’s 3,700-person staff conducted about 10,000 Zoom calls a month. They were now doing five times as many. She was impressed by how productive Unity’s employees had been they launched a new, 25,000-student online training class in the middle of the pandemic.
— What If Working From Home Goes on forever?, Clive Thompson in The New York Times
- 8 June 2020
Minneapolis Will Dismantle Its Police Force
Nine members of the Minneapolis City Council a veto-proof majority pledged on Sunday to dismantle the Police Department, promising to create a new system of public safety in a city where law enforcement has long been accused of racism.
— Minneapolis Will Dismantle Its Police Force, Council Members Pledge, Dionne Searcey and John Eligon in The New York Times