Jonathan Faucett

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The New Physics of Tennis

Unlocking the mysteries of Rafael Nadal’s killer topspin<p>In the French Open final this June, many thought that 6-foot-4-inch Robin Soderling would overpower Rafael Nadal, just as he had Roger Federer in the quarter­finals. On serve at 2–1 in the second set, he hit a sharp, low slice crosscourt to …

Conspiracy String Theory: How New Technology Killed American Men's Tennis

A barely-remembered change in tennis string technology played a major role in ending the Golden Era of American men's tennis. No, really.<p>A dearth of contenders near the top of the sport. No highly-ranked young players, either. Depending on who you ask, American men's tennis is either in a prolonged …

Rafael Nadal

Roger Federer’s Nine Racquets

Last Tuesday morning, on the second day of the U.S. Open, Nate Ferguson and Ron Yu were in Yu’s hotel room, on the East Side of Manhattan. Ferguson was seated on the edge of one of two double beds, while Yu was stringing the last of nine racquets that their client, Roger Federer, had requested for …

Rafael Nadal

Hikaru Dorodango – The Delicate Japanese Art of Making Perfect Shiny Spheres Out of Dirt

Hikaru Dorodango, which translates to ‘shiny dumpling’, is a relaxing Japanese art that involves crafting shiny spheres from dirt. That might sound …

You Can Explain eBay's $50 Billion Turnaround With Just This One Crazy Story

Between 2005 and 2007, its stock price was cut in half and its market cap shrank by $30 billion.<p>In October 2007, eBay admitted that Skype, a company it had acquired for $2.5 billion two years earlier, was actually worth less than half of that.<p>During the third quarter of 2007, eBay lost money for …

Startups

The $13 Billion Mystery Angels

For many years, a Los Angeles psychoanalyst to the stars named Milton Wexler led the fight against Huntington’s disease, a rare and fatal congenital …

Teodorin's World

The owner of the estate at 3620 Sweetwater Mesa Road, which sits high above Malibu, California, calls himself a prince, and he certainly lives like …

Lost in the Meritocracy

How I traded an education for a ticket to the ruling class<p>On the bus ride down to St. Paul to take the test that will help determine who will get ahead in life, who will stay put, and who will fall behind, two of my closest buddies seal their fates by opening pint bottles of cherry schnapps the …

Andy Warhol

The Poorest Rich Kids in the World

Why did the heirs to one of the largest fortunes in America grow up horribly neglected and abused?<p>The black Chevy Tahoe picked up speed as it …

Crime

The Prince Who Blew Through Billions

When two British lawyers, Faith Zaman and Thomas Derbyshire, signed on in 2004 to manage the affairs of Prince Jefri Bolkiah, notorious playboy brother of the Sultan of Brunei, they entered a world of orgiastic wealth: 250 companies, 2,000 cars, luxury hotels, planeloads of women and polo ponies, …

In the Footsteps of a Killer - Los Angeles Magazine

Fifty rapes. Ten murders. Two identities. One man. From 1976 to 1986, one of the most violent serial criminals in American history terrorized …

Everybody Is a Star: How the Rock Club First Avenue Made Minneapolis the Center of Music in the ’80s

The grassroots touring circuit for independent American rock bands was just beginning to cohere in 1981. “Booking was like being an explorer,” says Jefferson Holt, who managed R.E.M. at the time. “Punk” of whatever stripe was still viewed with extreme suspicion by middle America. “The people who …

Edward Hopper

A Boy of Unusual Vision

LONGFORM REPRINTS<p><i>This article won the 1985 Pulitzer Prize for feature writing.</i><p>First, the eyes: They are large and blue, a light, opaque blue, the …

Christmas Trees

BGS: The Strange and Mysterious Death of Mrs. Jerry Lee Lewis Bronx Banter

Here is Richard Ben Cramer’s chilling Jerry Lee Lewis story. It originally appeared in <i>Rolling Stone</i> (March 1, 1984) and is reprinted here with the …

13 Colorful Facts About Crayola

Crayola is pretty deeply embedded in popular culture. In one study, 99 percent of polled households recognized the brand name. Despite the occasional …

Wall Street
Crime

Crowd Source

The text message says to show up at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott Hotel at 11 a.m. on a Monday. But through some combination of traffic and my own …

Renting hell in New York City: how my hoarder landlady ruined my life

Steven W Thrasher paid $1,000 a month for a Brooklyn renter’s dream – 2,400 square feet of space on a beautiful tree-lined block – that was too good to be true<p>For five years, I lived on the most beautiful block in the five boroughs of New York City, occupying two full floors of a brownstone on a …

Empathy

Inside Grey Gardens With Gail Sheehy -- New York Magazine

<i>From the January 10, 1972 issue of</i> New York <i>Magazine.</i><p>This is a tale of wealth and rebellion in one American Gothic family. It begins and ends at the …

The Man Who Recorded, Tamed, and Then Sold Nature Sounds to America

A forgotten 1970s-era hippie polymath named Irv Teibel created the “soothing” vibe of the great outdoors.<p>In the 1970s, you could buy a pet rock, or a …

Is "the Hum" a scientific fact or a mass delusion?

Sue Taylor first started hearing it at night in 2009. A retired psychiatric nurse, Taylor lives in Roslin, Scotland, a small village seven miles …

Nobel Prize

The Strange Case of the Woman Who Can’t Remember Her Past—Or Imagine Her Future | WIRED

L<p>Like many American couples of modest but comfort­able means, Susie Mc­Kinnon and her husband, Eric Green, discovered the joys of cruise vacations in …

The sugar conspiracy

In 1972, a British scientist sounded the alarm that sugar – and not fat – was the greatest danger to our health. But his findings were ridiculed and his reputation ruined. How did the world’s top nutrition scientists get it so wrong for so long?<p>Robert Lustig is a paediatric endocrinologist at the …

Diabetes
Rotterdam
High School

The Battle Over the Sea-Monkey Fortune

The way the lawyer William Timmons described the case, it was practically a newsreel melodrama, with a helpless widow being menaced by a heartless tycoon. The story began with the widow, whose name is Yolanda Signorelli von Braunhut. She is a onetime heir to the considerable fortune still generated …

Taco Bell

The IRS's Favorite Mathematical Law

When it comes to catching tax cheats, the IRS has more than just federal law on its side. The agency’s arsenal also includes a mathematical truth …