Sunday 9.15.2019 New York Times Digest

1. Why Does Everything Smell, So Peacefully, of Lavender?

“Lavender was a key ingredient in the bougie domestic fantasy sold by retailers like Williams Sonoma and L’Occitane en Provence. It wafted gently over the entire oeuvre of Peter Mayle, the author of A Year in Provence, among other books. Now you can buy Downy Infusions Lavender Serenity fabric softener.”

2. The ‘Nike of Sleep’

“Casper has quietly acknowledged that it’s not enough to be a mere foam-slab company. The start-up needs a bigger market, and the concept it’s embracing is sleep itself.”

3. Salvadorans, Washington’s Builders, Face Expulsion Under Trump

“Temporary protected status does not provide a path to citizenship, but most of these workers never thought they would face deportation. They have been in the United States legally, for nearly two decades in many cases. Some have bought homes and cars and have settled into middle-class lives. Many have children who are American citizens.”

4. Freelancing to Fill the Gaps in Retirement Funds

“The stereotype of today’s freelancer is a young, scrappy urbanite hustling for gigs in a shared work space or coffee shop. And while it is true that millennials make up the largest chunk of the freelancer population in the United States, another demographic may soon catch up: their parents.”

5. Thousands More Jeffrey Epsteins Are Still Out There

“But the problem isn’t one tycoon but many tens of thousands of men who pay for sex with underage girls across the country. And society as a whole reacts with the same indifference that the authorities showed in the Epstein scandal.”

6. Are Democrats Doomed?

“Trump’s faux-thenticity somehow makes the Democratic candidates seem more packaged, more stuck in politician-speak.”

7. There Is No Tech Backlash

“It often seems we are willing to overlook significant potential downsides in exchange for rather trivial payoffs.”

8. Tina Turner Is Having the Time of Her Life

“There is a metal plaque on the gate to Tina Turner’s estate that says ‘Vor 12.00 Uhr nicht läuten, keine Lieferungen,’ which I believe is German for ‘Do not even think about bothering Tina Turner before noon.’”

9. Linda Hamilton Fled Hollywood, but ‘Terminator’ Still Found Her

“Disillusioned, she […] fled Los Angeles, roughing it for a few years on a Virginia farm before moving to New Orleans, a city whose lively spirit she treasures. […] Her life in New Orleans is gratifyingly spartan. ‘I love my alone time like no one you’ve ever met,’ said Hamilton…. ‘I’ve been celibate for at least 15 years. One loses track, because it just doesn’t matter — or at least it doesn’t matter to me. I have a very romantic relationship with my world every day and the people who are in it.’”

10. Restoring Black Cowboys to the Range

“One in four cowboys during what is known as the pioneer era, which began following the Civil War in 1865 and ended around 1895, were black.”

11. To Fight Global Warming, Think More About Systems Than About What You Consume

“Social scientists estimate that getting 3 or 4 percent of people involved in a movement is often enough to force systemic change, whereas if they acted solely as consumers that same number would have relatively little effect.”

12. When Violent Crime Is Your Fixation

This enthralling book devotes case studies to four bored or directionless women whose fixations on other people’s crimes unlock a sense of purpose and give them a vocation. For such women, someone getting killed is the best thing that ever happened to them.

13. What Can a Star Like Cardi B Do for a Politician Like Sanders?

“This pairing came about more naturally than it might look. In 2016, Cardi encouraged fans to ‘vote for Daddy Bernie’; she and Sanders have spent the last few years complimenting each other online. She is young enough to fit into Sanders’s base, and in many ways their brands align: Both appeal to their audiences by speaking with a certain blunt authenticity. That quality is clearly refreshing for younger audiences, but it also means that, throughout this video, you can almost feel the tension of the ghostly P.R. teams surrounding them, willing the conversation to go smoothly.”

14. How to Find Fossils

“It takes just a few minutes holding a fossilized, pill-bug-looking marine trilobite that swam through Paleozoic seas 500 million years ago to make you aware of the bliplike nature of your own time on Earth.”

15. What College Admissions Offices Really Want

“Enrollment managers know there is no shortage of deserving low-income students applying to good colleges. They know this because they regularly reject them — not because they don’t want to admit these students, but because they can’t afford to.”

16. I Was a Low-Income College Student. Classes Weren’t the Hard Part.

“We like to think that landing a coveted college spot is a golden ticket for students from disadvantaged backgrounds. We think less critically about what happens next. I lived this gap as a first-generation college student. And I returned to it as a first-generation graduate student, spending two years observing campus life and interviewing more than 100 undergraduates at an elite university. Many students from low-income families described having to learn and decode a whole new set of cues and terms like professors’ “office hours” (many didn’t know what they were or how to use them), and foreign rituals like being invited to get coffee with an instructor (and not knowing whether they were expected to pay) — all those moments between convocation and commencement where college life is actually lived.”

Comments are closed.