Ben James

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Land Down Under

The National - "I Need My Girl"

Longfellow: We Judge Ourselves on Capability, Others on Accomplishment

<b>Henry Wadsworth Longfellow</b> (1807-1882) was an American poet and professor known for his popular brand of lyric poetry and for being one of the five …

Poetry

The Price of a Life

What’s the right way to compensate someone for decades of lost freedom?<p>As teen-agers on Long Island, John Restivo and Marge Neidecker spent hours in her blue Road Runner, cruising around the towns where Queens gives way to Nassau County. “We did a lot of drag racing,” Neidecker remembered. “I owned …

Crime

Defending Darwin

I’M OFTEN ASKED what I do for a living. My answer, that I am a professor at the University of Kentucky, inevitably prompts a second question: “What …

Evolution

Kelly Slater’s Bells Board has to be Seen to be Believed

This was an April Fools' article and we can't wait to see the real designs from Kelly HQ. Sorry about that.<p>Kelly Slater’s new Bells board has to be …

Kelly Slater

Of 2 Minds: How Fast and Slow Thinking Shape Perception and Choice [Excerpt]

In psychologist Daniel Kahneman's recent book, he reveals the dual systems of your brain, their pitfalls and their power

Daniel Kahneman

Words Are Thinking Tools

Words are thinking tools (e.g., Dennett). New word tools can sometimes avoid old confusions. Let’s use “praxotype,” “cognotype,” and “technomorphic” …

How To Get Your Own False Confession

“If you decide the suspect is lying, you leave the room and wait for five minutes. Then you return with an official-looking folder. ‘I have in this …

The Woman Who Froze in Fargo

In November 2001, an unemployed Japanese travel agent named Takako Konishi was found dead outside Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. Nobody knew Konishi was a …

Crime

Noosa Styling at the Duct Tape Invitational | SURFER

en_US<p>article<p>Bustin' out the logs for the 2015 Duct Tape Invitational.<p>https://www.surfer.com/photos/noosa-styling/<p>SURFER Magazine

The Uncensored, Epic, Never-Told Story Behind 'Mad Men'

What was in the original 5-year-old script? Who was the other choice to play Don Draper? And the question that kicked off everything: "Who the f--- …

TV

The Trials of Tony Wright: How DNA Exonerated Convicted Murderer

Half a lifetime ago, Philadelphia cops put him away for a brutal crime he didn't commit. DNA tests showed someone else did it. But he's still not free<p>…

How to Tell Your Children and Friends That Your Father Is a Serial Killer

Recently, Roy Wenzl profiled a woman named Kerri Rawson for <i>The Wichita Eagle</i>. Rawson’s life was upended a decade ago, when an FBI agent knocked on …

Snapper in the Spotlight

10 Great Places To Surf In Africa

Surfers are forever on the lookout for the next big challenge, and forever traveling the globe in search of the best waves. Luckily for them, there …

South Africa

David Simon Does Not Care What You Think Is Cool About His TV Shows

“Nobody watched <i>The Wire</i> when it was on,” says David Simon, leaning forward with a conspiratorial whisper, sitting at a neat desk in the ersatz office …

Times Square

The Trip Treatment

Research into psychedelics, shut down for decades, is now yielding exciting results.<p>On an April Monday in 2010, Patrick Mettes, a fifty-four-year-old television news director being treated for a cancer of the bile ducts, read an article on the front page of the <i>Times</i> that would change his death. His …

Michelle Obama

Read the Transcript of Silk Road's Boss Ordering 5 Assassinations

Many of the ideological supporters of the Silk Road have described its sprawling online black market for drugs as an experiment in victimless crime …

Silk Road

After the Fall

I. In the Belly of the Beast<p>“When you’re born into this world, you’re given a ticket to the freak show. If you’re born in America you get a front seat.” —George Carlin<p>After legendary boxing trainer Freddie Roach gave me Mike Tyson’s phone number at his Wild Card gym in Los Angeles in the spring of …

Boxing

Three Tragic True Crime Stories

Like you, your coworker, that person on Twitter and the woman who sits in front of you on the train, I love Serial. As I fell asleep on Wednesday …

11 of the best trips for adrenaline junkies

Want thrills and spills in foreign lands? Let loose on one of these action-packed trips<p>1. Trekking on Everest, Nepal<p><b>Gokyo Lakes and Everest Lodge</b> …

The Time Jason Zengerle and a Gorilla Stalked Michael Moore for Might Magazine

<i>Jason Zengerle | Might magazine | 1997 | 19 minutes (4,685 words)</i><p>Introduction<p>Thanks to our Longreads Members’ support, we tracked down a vintage …

This Awesome Urn Will Turn You into a Tree After You Die

“After you die, do you want your body to feed worms or to feed squirrels?” asks the team behind the Bios Urn — a product by Spanish design studio …

Customers

Artificial intelligence 'will not end human race'

Head of Microsoft’s main research lab admits that AI will pose legal, ethical and psychological issues as it becomes more sophisticated<p>The head of Microsoft’s main research lab has dismissed fears that artificial intelligence could pose a threat to the survival of the human race.<p>Eric Horvitz …

Artificial Intelligence

A Year in the Water: Fergal Smith

Welp there you have it, my sense of “manhood” has been completely destroyed. Look at what Fergal Smith did last year. Ice cold water? Fuck it. Triple …

Aquatic Sports