The cure to doomscrolling blues? Chicago professor's #SomethingBeautiful hashtag strikes a COVID-19 chord worldwide.
CHICAGO — The bleakness of the COVID-19 pandemic recalls another time when social media sites like Twitter were overflowing with contention — the 2016 presidential election. Back then, Ada Palmer, a University of Chicago associate professor of history, wanted to do something about it, she said.“I noticed how much Twitter was filling up with pain, hate and blame and criticism,” Palmer said. “I decided when we really do need to be looking at news — because Twitter is some of the fastest and, in a strange way, most reliable crowdsourced news — there needs to be some kind of psychological break fr...
Editorial: The two bombs that ended World War II: A haunting anniversary
Early August 1945 was a confusing time for many Americans, who were experiencing some combination of celebration, sadness and foreboding.The war in Europe was over, bringing home thousands of gleeful troops by ship. Yet newspapers were still catching up on reports of individual soldiers killed during winter and spring, while men continued to die in the Pacific. That meant Americans were learning nearly every day the names of friends and neighbors who did not make it back.What would it take to defeat Japan and finally bring World War II to a close? The conventional wisdom was pessimistic — only...
Television Q&A: Should cable have its own awards show?
You have questions. I have some answers.Q: Has anyone from the broadcast networks ever suggested that cable return to its own awards show? It is unfortunate that the network shows, actors, writers, etc., get ignored by the Emmys. Don’t they deserve some of the glory?A: It has indeed been argued that broadcasters should have their own awards again. Tom Nunan of Forbes has even wondered why the broadcast networks televise the Emmys when the nominees and winners are so seldom from broadcast shows.But among the various TV awards competitions, anything other than an Emmy just is not as prestigious....
Tribune News Service
Common cold viruses can spark response against coronavirus, scientists report
SAN DIEGO — Your chances of getting COVID-19 could depend in part on how your body reacted the last time you caught a cold, according to a study published this week by researchers at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology.SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, may be the latest coronavirus, but it’s not the first. There are four other coronaviruses, which can cause the common cold. The new study shows that some people who have never been infected with SARS-CoV-2 have immune responses to it because they have been exposed to what are essentially older cousins of the novel coronavirus.Scienti...
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Book review: An isolated estate, odd residents and a deliciously creepy debut
“The Safe Place” by Anna Downes; Minotaur (352 pages, $26.99)———The beautiful, imposing mansion that is a bit creepy, isolated from the nearest town and neighbor is a familiar setting that has been vital to plots such as Daphne du Maurier’s “Rebecca” and Henry James’ “The Turn of the Screw.” Add to that setting a young, impressionable woman who is emotionally isolated. With the right storytelling skills, this familiar trope can seem as fresh and new as Anna Downes proves in her gripping debut “The Safe Place.”It would be kind to call Emily Proudman a hot mess, but loser also fits. She desperat...
Dennis Anderson: Restoring and casting centuries-old salmon rods helps keep pandemic at bay
MINNEAPOLIS — Scarce as the world is of some things, a coronavirus vaccine being primary, overabundant are the tortured and oftentimes just plain whiny reflections of the fibbers, bellyachers and dingbats otherwise known as memoirists.Relegated to the literary sidelines, meanwhile, are those who are genuinely worthy of consigning their life’s story to pen and paper, not least Bob Nasby, the Twin Cities fisherman and fly-casting instructor.Growing up tough in St. Paul, Bob drifted far afield as a youth, first by dabbling in spin fishing, then by getting hooked on the hard stuff, bobbers. In tim...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Reviews: 'Rules of the Road,' by Ciara Geraghty
“Rules of the Road” by Ciara Geraghty; Park Row Books (384 pages, $17.99)———In a classic road novel, the protagonist sets out on a journey and at the end becomes a changed and perhaps better person. The fun — or the drama, or the tragedy — is all in the getting there.Ciara Geraghty’s “Rules of the Road” follows this structure. Terry lives in Ireland with her husband, whom she likes well enough, when she thinks about it, and he probably likes her too, more or less. She’s kind and generous, a bit timid, doesn’t like to drive, avoids busy cities, and in general is much better at advocating for ot...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Isabel Wilkerson's 'Caste' is about the strict lines that keep us apart — lines that are more than race or class
CHICAGO — A caste is a ranking, an order, a top to bottom accounting.The concept of caste — not unlike class, though different in important ways — is thousands of years old, its roots can be inextricable, its effects very real. Yet caste is artificial and arbitrary. There is nothing natural or inevitable about it. Caste, as the name implies, is like casting, with society itself as director. Caste insists that you were born into a role, therefore assigning you certain qualities, personalities, urges, deficiencies. You are part of a caste, and so am I. So are your parents, and so were their pare...
Martina Navratilova signs letter supporting Idaho law that limits transgender student athletes
Martina Navratilova has joined more than 300 athletes in a letter expressing support to an Idaho law that bans transgender female student athletes from competing in women’s and girls sports.Navratilova, one of the most successful tennis players of all time, was one of 309 signatures in a letter expressing opposition to the inclusion of transgender women in sports.The initiative was headed by a group called Save Women’s Sports, who sent a letter to the board of governors of the National Collegiate Athletic Association “urging it to reject the call to boycott Idaho for protecting the integrity o...
New York Daily News
Trump says Epstein was never a Mar-a-Lago member. He was, and new book tells what got him exiled
MIAMI — Donald Trump severed ties with Jeffrey Epstein after the disgraced financier hit on the teenage daughter of a Mar-a-Lago member, threatening the Trump brand of glitz and glamour, according to a new book published about the president’s Palm Beach club.Trump publicly disavowed Epstein a day after the financier’s arrest on July 11, 2019, saying in the Oval Office that the two hadn’t spoken in 15 years after a falling out. He has also claimed that Epstein was never a Mar-a-Lago member.“I’m not a fan of his,” the president said, never disclosing why they fell out.But a new book out Tuesday ...