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  • News of the Weird: Norway's Battle Against Chaos

    News of the Weird: Norway's Battle Against Chaos
    Norwegian public television (NRK), which introduced the now-legendary continuous, live log-burning show (12 hours long, with “color commentary” on the historical and cultural importance of fire), scheduled a new program for this week in its appeal to serenity (labeled “Slow TV”). On Nov. 1, NRK was to televise live, for five hours, an attempt to break the world record for producing a sweater, from shearing the sheep to spinning the wool and knitting the garment (current record: 4:51, by Australians). (In addition to the log, NRK viewers have been treated to live cams on a salmon-fishing boat and, for five days, on a cruise ship.) Said an NRK journalist, “You would think it's boring television, but we have quite good ratings for these programs.”
  • Income inequality begins to hit business in the pocketbook

    Income inequality begins to hit business in the pocketbook
    There's a new element in the debate over U.S. income inequality, and it's one that may actually get our political leadership talking about ways to address the issue: businesses are beginning to notice that their middle-class customers have disappeared....

    A Word, Please: A digital daisy train of drivel

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: There's a lot of bad information out there about grammar. But seldom does it come bundled in a veritable value pack of linguistic baloney like the one I found in a link on Slate.com. The link, which promised...

    A Word, Please: Give a little thought to spacing

    This is a column about nothing. It's kind of like a show about nothing, just less entertaining — and a lot less lucrative. The nothing we're talking about is the blank space around punctuation. And for a whole lot of nothing, these blank spaces...

    10 things you might not know about immigration

    One of the biggest issues looming when Congress returns from its holiday break is immigration reform. In honor of our nation built by immigrants, we give you our rich, well-sourced and huddled mass of facts yearning to breathe free: 1. A staggering...