HT: Bird Dog.
Hugh Thomson, in the British Spectator, finds membership in a new Identity Group.
My brother recently decided to get a DNA test. He discovered that our family were all descended from a mix of the usual British suspects — a bit of Viking, Anglo-Saxon and Celt — and were predisposed to standard diseases and health risks. But there was one surprise. My siblings and I had double the normal amount of Neanderthal in our genes.
Reactions were mixed. My girlfriend declared she had suspected something of the sort for some time. My mother announced that it must come from my father’s side of the family. And it took us a while to digest. …
..then came help. I stumbled on an attractive scholarly thesis which proposed that the Neanderthal element within Homo sapiens was the part that added interest —that was, so to speak, the little spike of mustard in the mix. It can give a creative spark and has allowed us as a species to think outside the box. According to this thesis, the Neanderthal is the Mac component, with the design flair, while standard Homo sapiens is the boring old PC. Neanderthals were wilder, improvisational, free — and, the palaeontologists have shown, had bigger brains. The more Neanderthal you have within you, the more likely you are to break loose.
To say this came as a pleasurable hypothesis would be an understatement. Not only could I now frame myself as a proud Neanderthal, but as a middle-aged, middle-class white man living in the south of England, it could give me something I badly needed — identity politics.
Use Outline.com to beat the paywall.
Oxford University researchers have discovered the densest element yet known to science.
The new element, Governmentium (symbol=Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.
These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called pillocks.
Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert. However, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact.
A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete.
Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2 to 6 years.
It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganisation in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.
In fact, Governmentium’s mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganisation will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes.
This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration.
This hypothetical quantity is referred to as a critical morass.
When catalysed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium (symbol=Ad), an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium, since it has half as many pillocks but twice as many morons.
Steve Smith at McSweeney’s has a go at briefly capturing the typical student character and personality.
Harvard: I would shiv someone to answer a question in class.
Yale: I wrote a Pulitzer-nominated play about the time I shivved someone to answer a question in class.
Princeton: I’ve structured a derivative, the Shiv Swap, whose price reflects the probability that a given shivving is successful in allowing one to answer a question in class.
Brown: We must ensure equal distribution of shivs across all socio-economic strata of American society.
Cornell: GO BIG RED. …
U.S.â€”An American firearms manufacturer is making waves after unveiling a brand new AR-15 that glows blue whenever libs are nearby. Constructed with ancient elven technology from the forgotten land of Gondolin, this semi-automatic rifle will pulse with an ethereal blue light whenever it detects a democrat within a 100-yard radius.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
Fake News Disclaimer: There are apparently reasons to suspect that this is not actually the authentic text of a letter written a century ago by F. Scott Fitzgerald while quarantined in the South of France during the great Spanish Flu pandemic but a more recent composition by someone just pretending to be FSF. But good reading regardless.
It was a limpid dreary day, hung as in a basket from a single dull star. I thank you for your letter. Outside, I perceive what may be a collection of fallen leaves tussling against a trash can. It rings like jazz to my ears. The streets are that empty. It seems as though the bulk of the city has retreated to their quarters, rightfully so. At this time, it seems very poignant to avoid all public spaces. Even the bars, as I told Hemingway, but to that he punched me in the stomach, to which I asked if he had washed his hands. He hadnâ€™t. He is much the denier, that one. Why, he considers the virus to be just influenza. Iâ€™m curious of his sources.
The officials have alerted us to ensure we have a monthâ€™s worth of necessities. Zelda and I have stocked up on red wine, whiskey, rum, vermouth, absinthe, white wine, sherry, gin, and lord, if we need it, brandy. Please pray for us.
You should see the square, oh, it is terrible. I weep for the damned eventualities this future brings. The long afternoons rolling forward slowly on the ever-slick bottomless highball. Z. says itâ€™s no excuse to drink, but I just canâ€™t seem to steady my hand. In the distance, from my brooding perch, the shoreline is cloaked in a dull haze where I can discern an unremitting penance that has been heading this way for a long, long while. And yet, amongst the cracked cloudline of an eveningâ€™s cast, I focus on a single strain of light, calling me forth to believe in a better morrow.