August 3, 2017

A few cool things about today


W. E. B. Du Bois.

Hello! Here are a couple of quick things for you to enjoy on a bewildering Thursday.

Today is the Episcopal Church’s day to commemorate W.E.B. Du BoisDid you know the Episcopal liturgical calendar includes a Du Bois commemoration day?

It’s true! Du Bois was one of the greatest writers and intellectuals America has produced. More recently, he was the subject of a preposterous-if-teacup-sized tempest stirred by Betsy DeVos, America’s eleventh and worst Secretary of Education. He was also the author of, among many revered texts, the essay “The Talented Tenth,” the inspiration for Ladee Hubbard’s insanely eagerly anticipated debut novel The Talented Ribkins, which is out this Tuesday, and which Toni Morrison has called an “original and wildly inventive novel… in a class by itself.” Read a sample here, then lose your mind with excitement.


Merriam-Webster continues to have one of the best Twitter presences out there.

You want evidence? Dig on this:

So, yeah. If you’re currently in the middle of a scavenger hunt, and “joke about John Foster Dulles handwritten by Harry Truman to the executive vice president of a venerable dictionary company” is on it… well, then, you’re welcome.


The world is full of countries and now you can read literature from all of them.

This is thanks to the Global Anthology, a pretty exciting project unveiled at the Culture Trip yesterday by US literary editor Michael Barron. The idea is simple: Barron looked at all the countries in the world—as in, eeeeveryone—and found a piece of writing from each, translated into English where applicable. Pour a tall vessel of your refreshment of choice, and enjoy.


Tony Bennett is ninety-one today.

And we’re wishing him a good one. (Bill Evans is still sadly missed.)