pot: as cool as commercials
Snapping the perfect coal mine fire selfie wasn’t easy. In the time it took to take this my shoes started to melt and I suddenly realized that falling into a hellish crevasse of burning coal was a very real possibility, so I left.
Atlanta: Strip City
Until last year, twerking was the reserved for strip clubs and the dark corners of YouTube. Now, it’s a word in your grandma’s vocabulary, thanks to Miley Cyrus dry-humping that old man’s leg at the VMAs and op-ed writers all over the world losing their collective shit.
In Atlanta: Strip City, we travel to Atlanta—the city whose strip clubs pioneered the booty clap back when Miley was still learning to walk. Host Jo Fuertes-Knight talks to the superstar strippers of ATL about how they feel about the music industry’s appropriation of their world. She also sits down for a consultation with a buttock implant doctor, tries out a “twerk-cercise” class, and investigates “stripping licenses,” which allow the state of Georgia to profit from the enduring popularity of watching women take their clothes off onstage.
With unique access to three of the city’s most notorious strip clubs, their best-known dancers, management, and loyal customers, Atlanta: Strip City explores what it’s really like to get naked and dance for money in the strip club capital of the world.
A Town in Florida Has Made It Illegal for Homeless People to Cover Themselves with Blankets
There’s a new Tumblr blog making the rounds called Selfies with Homeless People. Apart from the rare picture in which the homeless person is complicit in the act, the majority of the photos are posed next to a sleeping or comatose human. Cue snap after snap of the worst sort of millennial douchery, as fresh-faced youngsters exploit the impoverished, dispossessed members of society for Instagram likes and hashtag LOLs.
Although their young souls may be dog shit, they aren’t actually physically harming homeless people. But don’t worry, because Florida, the internet’s favorite affront to human decency and legal reason, is picking up the slack. Thanks to a “camping” ordinancepassed by the Pensacola City Council last summer, homeless people in the city will becriminalized for, among other things, sleeping outdoors while “adjacent to or inside a tent or sleeping bag, or atop and/or covered by materials such as a bedroll, cardboard, newspapers, or inside some form of temporary shelter.”
Super Bowl Boulevard Is a Corporate Wonderland
Sometimes, we need to be reminded that the world is a fundamentally absurd and silly place; that while there are people out there who command a lot of power and money, those people aren’t generally smarter or less goofy than you or me. For instance, there must have been a moment when there was a presentation, probably in some sleek conference room, about what events should be thrown in honor of the Super Bowl coming to New York City. One of the slides that appeared on the hi-def flatscreen read something like:
THROW A BIG STREET FAIR IN TIMES SQUARE IN LATE JANUARY? INVITE ALL THE BRANDS! (SUSAN PLEASE REWRITE TO MAKE IT SOUND BETTER THX)
And with that, or something like it, the Super Bowl Boulevard Engineered by GMC came into being.
A press release has described the Super Bowl Boulevard as “a series of football-themed experiences that will take over Times Square the week before the big game. Stop by a live concert, snap a photo with the Vince Lombardi Trophy, or race down a specially made toboggan. [sic]” Another way to think of it, via Business Insider, is as a “garish branded hellscape… placed on top of the preexisting garish branded hellscape that is Times Square.” Having wandered around the Boulevard for a couple of hours in the freezing cold on Wednesday night, I can confirm that it is indeed both “football-themed” and “garish.” But calling it a “hellscape” is maybe being a bit unfriendly to the giant, multinational corporations responsible for it. They just want you to have a good time! Look, they brought the Rockettes in to do this:
They also built these giant Roman numerals, which rose from the ground like a heathen idol after an elaborate ceremony that involved not only the Rockettes, but also the Boys Choir of Harlem, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, NFL Commissioner Roger Gooddell, and the cast of the musical Jersey Boys:
Oh, did I mention Kevin Bacon’s band, the Bacon Brothers (best known for their hit “Wait, Kevin Bacon Is in a Band? Huh. OK, Good for Him I Guess”) played on Wednesday night? Kevin started off on the bongos:
Is Australia Going to Kill the Great Barrier Reef on Friday?
The largest reef network in the world may be half dead, but Queensland, Australia needs jobs and Asia needs coal—and coal jobs trump everything. We’ll be reminded of this again on Friday, when the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority decide whether it’s appropriate to dump about 106 million cubic feet of dredged sand on the reef. This is part of a master plan to turn a smallish coal port named Abbot Point into the world’s largest, enabling it to single handedly process half of Queensland’s current coal output, which is also projected to be a third larger by 2030. With 64.6 percent (194.5 million tons) of Australia’s coal shipped out of Queensland in 2012, upping the state’s export capabilities is a priority, even though a bunch of mega-ports sit right next to the Great Barrier Reef. So do we dredge carefully, or do we dredge like we mean it?
Abbot Point is currently one of the smaller ports, about 15 miles north of Bowen and the most northerly in the state. It’s one of several lined up for expansion, but it was the first approved for dredging by Australian Environment Minister Greg Hunt, back in December. There were a few ideas for disposing of the dredge spoil, including pumping it back to land, before it was decided that dropping it in the deep water amongst the reef was the way to go/cheap. Allegedly the sand will settle within 7-10 days and the coral won’t be affected, but the locals are up in arms, and according to Felicity Wishart from the Australian Marine Conservation Society, it’s for good reason.
P/T editor position available. Details HERE
If you’re a writer in New York you should do this!