Language. It’s as adaptable as Darwin’s finches.
It’d be interesting to know how the Internet changes the game. Seems like it would go a long way toward democratizing the process by which lingo gets mingled.
Generations of us know Roald Dahl as, first and foremost, the author of popular children’s novels like The BFG, The Witches, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (that book of the “subversive” lost chapter), and James and the Giant Peach.[...]
Get me a piano teacher, stat!
When I was a child, my father, enchanted by the notion that I might someday provide live piano accompaniment to his evening cocktails, signed me up for lessons with a mild-mannered widow who—if memory serves—charged 50¢ an hour.
For the last three decades my right ankle has been the site of a deeply botched tattoo. It was supposed to be a yin yang, but with every passing year, it looks more and more like a cancerous mole. The drunken Vietnam Vet who administered it barely glanced at the design taking shape on my once virgin skin as he chatted with a pal.[...]
According to Harvard Medical School’s Admissions department, “to study medicine at Harvard is to prepare to play a leading role” in the “quest to improve the human condition.[...]
“If by some miracle some prophet could describe the future exactly as it was going to take place, his predictions would sound so absurd, so far-fetched that everyone would laugh him to scorn.”
That was Sir Arthur C.
On April 26, 1986, the number 4 reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant blew up in what is now Ukraine. The site spewed a cloud of radioactive material that spread over much of Europe. The area immediately around Chernobyl received more than 400 times the radiation as Hiroshima and won’t be safely inhabitable for about 20,000 years.[...]
Carl Sagan, the turtleneck-sporting astrophysicist from Cornell, was the greatest communicator of science of his generation.[...]
If you’re a regular OC reader, you’re familiar with John Green, the bestselling author who has produced a series of educational videos — most notably, A Crash Course in World History, A Crash Course on Literature, and the new PBS video series, The Art Assignment.[...]
A few months ago, we featured the increasingly abstract portraits drawn by an artist after periodic doses of LSD. It happened in the late 1950s, a time when you might well imagine such an activity going down in, say, a bohemian quarter of New York, but also a time when hallucinogenic drugs rode a wave of popularity among legitimate scientists.[...]