It's almost time for the 2022 ToB!

It's almost time for the 2022 Tournament of Books, presented by Field Notes. Check out the short list today!

Each judge has around four minutes to assess each product – this includes tasting, discussing and writing up feedback for the producer. "We run through the emotional gamut of being curious, frustrated, bewildered, excited, and occasionally exhilarated if we find a three-star product."

“Awards have perhaps always been inextricable from capitalism.” How Britain’s “Great Taste” awards for food are decided.

↩︎ Vittles
Wikitrivia is a game where you try to sequence Wikipedia articles in chronological order.
Five "weed nuns" in Central California are teaching Christ through cannabidiol products. “Christianity is dying all around us."

“People don’t want to believe that humans could be better than a machine.”

Guardian story today about what life is like as a "super-recognizer," someome who's exceptionally good at remembering faces...

She still enjoys looking at faces – the use of face masks during the pandemic is providing a fun challenge. Most of the time she can still recognise a person even if they’re wearing one – and the diagnosis has given her “confidence in my abilities.” “It made me realise: oh yeah, it’s not crazy – I must have been right the whole time. It’s not that I’m creepy, but my brain is just wired that way.”

...reminded us of the much more robust New Yorker article from 2016 about facial-recognizing pros in London, and it's still great.

“Every identification we make is effectively a cold case. We’re unique. There’s no precedent for what we’re doing.”

A new Dior baby stroller costs $7,700.

I am jealous of the people who make it work with an Eames chair, a fancy ottoman, some nice art books, and multigenerational inherited wealth. Their iPads are so empty.

Paul Ford: I often trick myself into thinking that the road to less stuff might be paved with more stuff.

A new effort's underway to build "a biblical sized monument on the back of a semi-trailer" in honor of Elon Musk.
Some thoughts on what early bikes did for women. "Almost everyone one knows is buying a bicycle or talking of buying one."
You can get a bicycle and $10,000 in Bitcoin if you work remotely and you're willing to move to northwest Arkansas.

Kitties vs. Café

A diorama-themed restaurant in Osaka was saved from pandemic-closure after a family of cats made it their home. As related by Spoon & Tamago:

It was like the set of a monster cat movie so the owner began photographing and posting pictures to the restaurant’s Instagram account. Before long, people began showing up from all over Japan to see the cats and business took off.

From the Instagram account:

Your weekly white paper: A new study finds both men and women look better with a mask, preferably blue, obscuring their face.

It’s pointless to debate which group is loneliest. Still, I might argue for some sympathy for Northerners in midlevel jobs who work alone or remotely.

Pouring one out for the academics, the accountants, the middle managers dealing with pandemic loneliness.

↩︎ Bloomberg
People are swabbing their throats with at-home Covid tests, looking for more accurate results. "They may stab themselves."

What it might look like if you asked a neural network to show you something relaxing.

Continuing a downward slide, college enrollment has dropped by more than a million students since the start of the pandemic.
Upload and glitch any image.
The RNC may require presidential candidates to refuse to be in debates sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates.
The TMN Store is another way you can support The Morning News and the Tournament of Books. (Plus, Sustaining Members get 50% off.)
"In theory...electoral democracy allows citizens to select authentic representatives." On replacing elections with lotteries.