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“BATH WHY? I is sleeeept”

Rob Ford has died. He was a terrible mayor and a really unpleasant person. He was also an addict, and was deeply troubled. I am sorry that anyone dies of cancer in their forties. I know that, personally, I just felt weird and sad when I heard about his death, because I know that part of why I hated him was that I was embarrassed as a Canadian that he was popular and that I liked to think of Toronto as being “better than that” when, in fact, Canadians are just as racist and gross as anyone else. I hope his family is okay. The cops got called out there pretty frequently on domestic calls, so I think it’s entirely possible they are.

Why “Judeo-Christian values” is hot nonsense and also let’s be honest, it just means “No Muslims/Homers Allowed”:

At the moment when liberal Protestants and others left Judeo-Christianity behind, fearing the tri-faith model was too narrow to capture the world’s diversity, evangelical Protestants seized on the idea of Judeo-Christianity. As they came to slowly accept the legitimacy of Jewish and Catholic faith, Judeo-Christianity became a way to withhold legitimacy from others. Abandoning their earlier commitment to a ‘Christian Nation’, evangelicals now accepted Catholics and Jews as important allies in the fight against abortion, feminism and gay rights.


Just to play devil’s advocate here, what if birds are horrible monsters and we should only study them to learn how to fight them off more efficiently:

Today, Dr. Masello’s hands are covered with bite scars. He has had four operations to repair a broken knee, a broken nose — “the little accidents you get from working with parrots,” he said. Still, he has no regrets.

I would be sharing Nikki’s adoption series at Catapult even if she wasn’t one of my dearest, dearest people, and this one made me cry:

This piece is very sad and infuriating:

Nieto died because a series of white men saw him as a menacing intruder in the place he had spent his whole life. They thought he was possibly a gang member because he was wearing a red jacket. Many Latino boys and men in San Francisco avoid wearing red and blue because they are the colours of two gangs, the Norteños and Sureños – but the colours of San Francisco’s football team, the 49ers, are red and gold. Wearing a 49ers jacket in San Francisco is as ordinary as wearing a Saints jersey in New Orleans. That evening, Nieto, who had thick black eyebrows and a closely cropped goatee, was wearing a new-looking 49ers jacket, a black 49ers cap, a white T-shirt, black trousers, and carried the Taser in a holster on his belt, under his jacket. (Tasers shoot out wires that deliver an electrical shock, briefly paralysing their target; they are shaped roughly like a gun, but more bulbous; Nieto’s had bright yellow markings over much of its surface and a 15-foot range.)

Nieto had first been licensed by the state as a security guard in 2007 and had worked in that field since. He had never been arrested and had no police record, an achievement in a neighbourhood where Latino kids can get picked up just for hanging out. He was a Buddhist: a Latino son of immigrants who practised Buddhism is the kind of hybrid San Francisco used to be good at. As a teen he had worked as a youth counsellor for almost five years at the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center; he was outgoing and participated in political campaigns, street fairs and community events.

Friend of The Toast Josh Gondelman is on Conan tonight, you should watch it!

Baltimore, transportation, and inequality:

The Baltimore riot of April 27, 2015, started with a shutdown of public transportation. When students got out of Frederick Douglass High and other nearby schools that Monday afternoon, just after Freddie Gray’s memorial service had concluded, and headed for Mondawmin Mall, the transit hub for some 5,000 of them, they found several hundred police waiting, mobilized by social media rumors of an after-school rampage that would start at the mall and head toward downtown, three miles away. They also found that the bus lines through the hub were suspended, as was service at the Mondawmin subway station. Students arriving via transit from elsewhere for transfers at the hub were simply being dumped there. “Students were trapped in the mess, whether they were choosing to participate or not,” one teacher who’d witnessed the scene recounted in a post on Facebook. “They were thrown into the middle of essentially a battle field.”

A cool piece on how women have been erased from our popular accounts of the Easter Rising (popular if you’re of Irish extraction, obvi):

Ms. O’Farrell’s act of bravery has become one of the iconic moments of the Rising, not so much for the act itself, but for how it was documented. In a photo of the surrender taken later with Pearse and two British officers, only Ms. O’Farrell’s boots were visible. When the photo was first published in a British newspaper, even the boots had disappeared.

Ms. O’Farrell claimed later that she deliberately stepped out of sight. But rightly or wrongly, “that photo” has come to symbolize the airbrushing — or “Eire-brushing,” as some have said — of women out of Ireland’s history. Now, as the centenary celebrations of the Easter Rising get underway, a determined effort is being made to reinsert the lost stories of female heroism into the male-dominated narrative of the struggle for Irish independence. As these stories come into focus, the doctored image could be said to represent something more that has consequences to this day: the removal of women from a public role in the republic they helped bring into being.

sweet merciful lord:

In a new interview with W magazine, Beecroft says of her work with West, “I am protected by Kanye’s talent. I become Black. I am no longer Vanessa Beecroft and I am free to do whatever I want because Kanye allows it.”

Unless ‘Ye can wave a magic wand, turn Beecroft into an actual Black woman who gets followed around in a Target by a suburban bigot willing to punch protesters for Donald Trump, this is not how any of this works.

A Toastie directed me towards literary trivia for a good cause! If you’re in Boston, check it out!

thank you:

Q. Too picky about a nose picker?: My fiancé picks his nose. He has some sort of medical condition where he’s constantly stuffed up/sniffling every year from October to March. He thinks it’s just because of the cold winter air. I’d be fine with him picking his nose if he did it in the bathroom or in the other room, but we’ve had several fights about him doing it when we’re cuddling on the couch, sitting in bed, or working together at the table. To appease me, he won’t do it while we’re eating, but he thinks I’m not taking his medical issues seriously when I tell him to knock it off or go to the doctor. Help?

A: I am very sorry that your fiancé has sinus problems. I do not believe that “chronically picking his nose while eating and/or cuddling his significant other” is a very good medical solution. I do not believe that you should have to ask someone not to pick their nose while they are holding you, much less have to do so repeatedly. “Winter” is not a good excuse for constant nose-picking. Asking him to see a doctor is the definition of taking his medical issues seriously. There has to be a bar. Right? There has to be some kind of personal hygiene bar that a person needs to clear in order for a relationship to be successful, and I do not believe your fiancé is currently meeting it, or even trying to.

all of these people are being knobs:

Two agents in a team have been involved in a relationship for a couple of years. We’ll call them Sophie and Matt. From what I have been informed, Sophie and Matt are generally not too gross, but often do things like handholding/kissing each others hands/foreheads when sitting next to each other.

This is what they were doing last week when another agent (we’ll call her Charlotte) was sitting next to Matt. Sophie was coming over to his desk constantly throughout the day.

While on her work computer, Charlotte went on Facebook and wrote something to the accord of “people who can’t go a couple of hours without being all over their boyfriend are pathetic and gross. I can’t wait for this day to be over so I no longer feel the need to vomit.” She also sent a message through our internal messaging program to two of her good friends (Aaron and Nathan) saying “Sophie and Matt are about two seconds away from banging right here, I’m going to be ill.” About six colleagues liked the status, and Aaron and Nathan replied to the chat with messages agreeing that Sophie and Matt’s PDA is gross. (Sophie/Matt and Charlotte are not friends and don’t have each other added on their accounts.)

Sophie saw this on Charlotte’s screen and got furious at Charlotte about it. Based on the way monitors are set up, Sophie would have had to intentionally made a point of looking at Charlotte’s screen to notice it.

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