At Ground Zero, the death of Osama bin Laden was greeted with great jingoistic fervor within hours. But the next morning underneath Williamsburg it was a different story.
Category : US
New York Magazine has a great slideshow of Obama Feigning Interest in Mundane Things
You think times are tough for you? At least you don’t own a mall. Once a bulwark of American economy, culture and probably its soul, the shopping mall has fallen on hard times. And to see the decline close up you should check out the site deadmalls.com. So what should we do with this new surfeit of empty big boxes surrounded by oceans of asphalt? There are a few good ideas submitted to Reburbia, a design competition to re-imagine suburbia. One suggestion from the Alabama-based architecture firm Forest Fulton suggests that perhaps the mall should see a reversal of a function and go from being:
a retailer of food – food detached from processes from which it came to be – to producer of food. The parking lot becomes a park-farm. The inside of the big box becomes a greenhouse and restaurant. Asphalt farming techniques allow for layering of soil, compost in containers on top of asphalt. The big box store’s roof is partially replaced with a greenhouse roof. Other details, such as the reversal of parking lot light poles into solar trees that hold photovoltaics can be implemented. One can imagine pushing a shopping cart through this suburban farm and picking your produce right from the vine, with the option to bring your harvest to the restaurant chef for preparation and eating your harvest on the spot.
See more finalists in the Reburbia design competition.
Veteran correspondent for The Washington Post, T.R. Reid has written an interesting new book on healthcare, The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care. In the book Reid goes, suffering with his frozen shoulder, to 10 different countries to seek treatment. The journey seems to be a great comparison of the world’s healthcare systems and perspectives. Read the New York Times review or, even better, listen to his interview on Fresh Air. Reid was also on KQED’s Forum as well.
There was a cool analysis of banknote designs in The Atlantic recently with a link to design consultant Richard Smith’s Dollar ReDe$ign Project, an entire blog and contest to redesign and rebrand U.S. Money. While Smith chose Kyle R Thompson’s design as the overall winner, highlights for me were designs from Mikael Tarkela, Nicholas Friend, Michael Tyznik, Nate Castiglione. Also, don’t miss Matt Dent’s winning design for the new British Sterling coins that were released this year. They’re probably the best looking coins on the planet.
The New York Times has a nice interactive graphic that displays information from The American Time Use Survey which asks thousands of Americans to recall how they spent their time in 2008. Not surprisingly, the unemployed get an hour more of sleep each day than the employed and they spend a lot more time keeping the house tidy than people with jobs too. Read the full article.
This week David Lynch launched Interview Project, where he goes on a 70-day, 20,000-mile road trip interviewing random people. New ones are added every 3 days.
There’s a great Immigration map in the New York Times today that shows how foreign-born groups settled across the U.S. during the past 120 years.
Let the wife of the Vice President, Lynne Cheney, take you on a tour of the art on the walls of the Vice President’s residence. The living room is dominated by a wonderful painting by Helen Frankenthaler– and it’s called Lush Spring… and the colors are just so wonderful… the greens just pop out, notes Mrs. Cheney. Moving to the library she describes a carved ship made by French prisoners during the Napoleonic period and it’s carved from animal bone. I think that prisoner condition in that era were pretty awful and people did this incredibly intricate work in order to earn just a little bit of money and they would then sell the ship so they could maybe buy a little extra food.
More US soldiers have died in Iraq than died in the first three years of the Vietnam War. Startling, but true it seems. There were 392 fatal casualties in 1962, ‘63 and ‘64 in Vietnam. The current US deathtoll in Iraq is up to 418 today– which includes the 2 Black Hawks shot down this weekend.