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Ramadan

A look at the digital ruins of a forgotten future called Second Life.

U.S. mints coins for Donald Trump-Kim Jong Un summit that might not happen.

Fewer tourists are coming to the U.S. and experts say that it’s largely Trump’s fault.

Barbie “Shero” doll with a hijab honors Olympian Ibtihaj Muhammad.

Martin Luther King may have been killed by a Memphis police officer, not James Earl Ray.

How white Americans used lynchings to terrorize and control black people.

Laminated jewelry crafted from vintage books by Jeremy May.

A look at the guerrilla grafting movement—secretly grafting fruit-bearing trees onto ornamental city trees in order to feed the poor.

A Princeton sociologist spent 8 years asking rural Americans why they are so pissed off. Hint: It’s not about the economy.

The surprising secret to aging well.

New York City has genetically distinct “uptown” and “downtown” rats.

Why the DNC is fighting WikiLeaks and not Wall Street.

How Australia all but ended gun violence.

83,500 vintage sewing patterns put into online database from Vogue, McCall’s, Butterick, and Simplicity.

Stunning images of pagan costumes worn at winter celebrations around the world.

Watch the illustrated version of “Alice’s Restaurant,” Arlo Guthrie’s Thanksgiving Counterculture Classic.

The bots that are changing politics.

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Can we fix it? The repair cafes are waging war on throwaway culture.

The REAL reason behind Toys R Us shutting down.

Baltimore spends billions on corporate subsidies but can’t heat its schools.

The missing link: why disabled people can’t afford to #DeleteFacebook.

Corruption, not Russia, is Trump’s greatest political liability.

Parkland student Emma González opens up about her fight for gun control.

What’s driving Republican retirements from Congress?

Why everyone should work a shit job at least once in his/her life.

The DCCC’s long, ugly history of sabotaging progressives. 

It’s time to boycott Amazon.

100 years ago a German-American was lynched by a self-proclaimed patriots. 

Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez might be the most under-appreciated superhero artist of all time.

America’s youth are rejecting capitalism. What do they want instead?

This high school student said she learned nothing at one of New York City’s elite high schools.

A white mob wiped this all-black Florida town off the map. 60 years later their story was finally told.

Watch the world’s oldest board game, The Royal Game of Ur, being played.

New studies show that legal marijuana states have lower opiate use.

What is the Donald Trump vs. Jeff Bezos feud really about?

What black voters lost by aligning with the Democratic party.

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There’s this story that’s currently trending on Buzzfeed that’s pretty bizarre. The gist is that Lisa Palmer was a student at Hunter College in New York City until two years ago when she said that the school forced her to drop out just a semester before she was scheduled to graduate because she couldn’t pay her student fees. She claimed that Hunter College said that she could remain in her dorm room as long as she paid off her course fees and re-enroll in classes. Since that time she has remained in her dorm room while not paying any room and board fees nor paying off her past debts to the college. She currently works two jobs but she has yet to re-enroll in any classes.

Hunter College has spent the past two years sending her notices of owed residency fees as well as repeated eviction notices only to have Palmer ignore them. Hunter College has sued Palmer asking her to not only leave the dormitory but to pay back a staggering $94,000 dollars that she has owed them for the two years she has lived in that dorm. Palmer has said that she hasn’t paid anything over the last two years because she can’t afford to pay so, therefore, she shouldn’t have to pay anything yet she should still be able to remain in her dorm room. She also said that she’s currently looking for legal representation but, according to her, “none have met my expectations in terms of their deduction ability.”

I stayed in a dormitory during my undergraduate years at the University of Maryland at College Park and this story has me shaking my head at both sides of this dispute.

Lisa Palmer is 32 years old and I don’t even know why she wants to continue her fight to remain in a dormitory, especially at her age. A typical college dorm tends to be cramped. I once lived in a dorm room with two beds, two bureaus, two desks, two chairs, and a large closet but I had to share it with a roommate. Based on a photo of one of Hunter College’s dorm rooms that I saw posted on the Buzzfeed site, it looks like Lisa Palmer had a room to herself but it still looks very cramped with a bed, a desk, a chair, a closet, and a small bureau. She can’t really own too many clothes or other things because her room is so small. Dorm life was barely tolerable for me when I was in my early 20’s and I’m not exactly pining for that experience again because living in one can be a total hassle—which only gets even more annoying the older you get.

If you need to use a toilet, brush your teeth, or take a shower, you have to frequently leave your dorm room to go to one of the communal bathrooms that are located on each floor. If you need to eat a meal, you have to leave the dorm and walk to the nearest dining hall. The dining hall was only opened during certain hours of the day so if you were hungry at—let’s say—2 a.m. you had to stay hungry (or come up with an alternate way to satisfy that hunger) because the dining hall was closed. Unless you’re lucky enough to own a tiny refrigerator that’s suitable for a dorm room (which I never had due to tight finances) you have to leave your room and go somewhere else if you’re in the mood for a soda or a glass of wine or even a drink of water.

I remember during my time living in a dorm I wasn’t allowed to have a hot plate or a portable stove in my dorm room due to fire regulations. This was also back in the day when microwave ovens were very big, bulky, and expensive so they weren’t practical for a dorm room at all. There were a couple of kitchen ovens that were located in the basement of my dorm near the laundry room. I only used one of the ovens once and that was to bake a birthday cake using one of those boxed cake mixes and pre-made frosting for my then-boyfriend’s 25th birthday. (He later became my ex-husband.) It was such a hassle having to leave my upper level dorm room, take an elevator to go to the basement, whip up the cake (which I recall had its own disposable pan that you can bake and serve in and it only required adding water then stirring the mix with a plastic spoon that I swiped from the dining hall), pop it in the oven, then wait around for the oven to finish baking because there was a rule where we had to stick around whenever we used one of the ovens because the dormitory wanted to avoid oven-related fires. It was easier to just go to a dining hall for meals than to try to cook your own meal using one of the dormitory ovens.

As for Hunter College, I don’t know why they didn’t move to evict her sooner instead of filing a lawsuit after two years. I know that during my undergraduate days the dormitories at the University of Maryland were only available to students who were 1) single, 2) childless, 3) pet-free, and 4) enrolled for a minimum of nine credit hours per semester, which generally equalled to three courses. If, for whatever reason, a student had to completely withdraw from all of his/her classes before the semester ended, he/she was expected to move out of the dorm soon afterwards. A dorm resident could also be kicked out before the semester ended if he/she engaged in acts of violence against another student or did something extremely destructive (such as setting a bed on fire). Each dorm resident had to sign a contract acknowledging that he/she would abide by all of the rules as long as he/she wanted to stay in a dorm.

I assume that Hunter College has those same standards. They could’ve evicted Lisa Palmer the moment they found out that she hadn’t enrolled in any classes in a semester. All they had to do was to send a notice saying that she would have to leave by a certain date or else she would be evicted then stick to that schedule if she ignored that notice. They could have gotten the campus police to remove her from the room while hiring some movers to place her belongings on a nearby street corner. For added measure, they could’ve hired a locksmith to change the lock to that room so she couldn’t sneak back in. That’s no different than what I occasionally see at a local apartment complex that’s located near my home where someone’s furniture, clothes, and other belongings suddenly appear in a giant pile near the curb because a tenant has just been evicted. I just don’t understand why Hunter College dragged its feet on this.

There is so much weirdness on both sides that it resulted in the escalation of something that should have been resolved with very little drama two years ago.

Last year I purchased this book from the used book table at the annual Greenbelt Labor Day Festival.

First Day of the Greenbelt Labor Day Festival, September 1, 2017

I’ve rendered a few songs from that book using the open source software MuseScore but I decided to put it away for a while because of the winter holiday season and other issues that are currently going on in my life. It was during the Presidents’ Day holiday that I decided to pick it up again and choose another song that I can put through MuseScore. I chose “The Bowery,” a song from the 1890s that skewered the Bowery’s high crime rate at the time.

Since those days the Bowery—like the rest of Manhattan—has gotten gentrified, much to the consternation of longtime residents. In any case, here’s my video version of “The Bowery” as rendered by MuseScore. Enjoy!

By the way, if you want to learn more about this song, check out the Wikipedia.

Recently I decided to take extensive photographs of a typical Toys R Us store mainly because late last year, just before Christmas, Toys R Us had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. This month Toys R Us is closing a large number of its stores throughout the United States. Nearly three years ago I did an extensive post covering the two-month period that the Kmart in Greenbelt, Maryland conducted its going out of business sale. This time I decided to take a photo of a Toys R Us store that is NOT among the stores that are slated for closure because I wanted to provide sort of a time capsule as to what it was like to visit a Toys R Us store on a typical day when it was in normal operations.

The biggest irony about the upcoming store closings is that this year is Toys R Us’ 70th anniversary. When I looked up Toys R Us’ Wikipedia page I learned one interesting fact—that chain started its first store in the Adams-Morgan section of Washington, DC. That store, which was then-called Children’s Supermart, was operating in a space that is now occupied by the iconic nightclub Madam’s Organ Blues Bar. A few years later the first store with the Toys R Us name was opened in Rockville, Maryland. Toys R Us went from being a local business to a national (then international) store chain when it was sold to Interstate Department Stores, Inc. in 1966.

In a way it’s kind of sad that this is happening to Toys R Us because I grew up watching those commercials on television that featured someone dressed in a Geoffrey Giraffe costume while the ad jingle went “I don’t want to grow up, I’m a Toys R Us kid/There’s a million of toys at Toys R Us that I can play with.”

There was only one Toys R Us store in the town that I grew up in (Glen Burnie, Maryland). Sometimes my mother would buy toys from that store but she also purchased toys from Montgomery Wards and Sears as well. I still have memories of when I used to go to the one in the Glen Burnie Mall and it had a sign that said that children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Sometimes I would get permission from my mom to go to either the Record Bar (which sold vinyl records, 8-track tapes, and cassette tapes) or the video arcade (both of which have long since gone out of business) while she and my grandmother went inside of some clothing store. I was somewhere between 12-15 when I did this. (I know that for a fact because I pretty much lost interest in doing this once I reached 16.) I always made an effort to go past the Toys R Us entrance in the mall where I would enter that store without being accompanied by an adult just so I would flout that rule. None of the store employees ever did anything to kick me out for being an unaccompanied minor under 16 but it still filled my juvenile ego to know that I flouted a store rule. I never stayed too long inside Toys R Us because most of the toys were geared towards younger kids and I had pretty much outgrown any interest I had in things like Barbie dolls or Play-Doh. I only went inside because a sign said I couldn’t do it and it was an easy way to rebel against authority without getting into any kind of serious trouble. (LOL!)

Ironically that Glen Burnie Toys R Us is still going strong and it’s among the stores that is being saved from closure for now. The same can’t be said for the rest of the mall and, in fact, that mall had finally closed down for good last year.

When I moved closer to the Washington, DC area as an adult, I was lucky enough to be in an area where there were three different Toys R Us stores all located just a short drive away from my home—in New Carrollton, Laurel, and Langley Park. I used to periodically shop at Toys R Us mainly to purchase presents for my then-husband’s nieces and nephews or to buy baby shower gifts for various friends, relatives, and coworkers. There was a time when my church had a Toys for Tots-like program around the winter holiday season where we purchased toys for the children at this non-profit community center in Washington, DC that strived to provide programs for inner city kids from low-income families that would be an alternative to gangs and I used to shop at Toys R Us for that reason as well.

But then Toys R Us encountered its first problem when the dotcom boom happened and it was very slow in getting an online presence.  Amazon, which sold only books at the time, wanted to start selling toys so Toys R Us entered into a ten-year contract with Amazon to allow that online site to be its exclusive online supplier. It might have sounded like a good idea at the time but, in retrospect, that deal was like having Coca-Cola decide to let Pepsi-Cola handle all of its marketing and distribution of Coke products. Amazon soon allowed other third-party retailers to sell toys on its site, which resulted in a lawsuit.

One-by-one, over the next few years, the Toys R Us stores that were located closer to my home started to close. The one in New Carrollton was located in a building with a flat roof. A major blizzard hit the area where two feet of snow accumulated. The flat roof of the New Carrollton Toys R Us had accumulated so much snow that it literally caved in. I still remember seeing local news reports about that roof collapse along with pictures of stuffed animals floating on top of huge puddles that were created by melting snow. The chain decided to permanently close that store rather than rebuild. The building was razed then rebuilt and a CVS Pharmacy now sits in that location.

As for the one in Laurel I remember that the chain decided to do a remodel of that store while remaining open for business during the remodeling. Once that job was done that store looked really nice with a fresh coat of paint and bright lights. A year or two later the chain decided to close the Laurel store, which had me rolling my eyes since that chain had spent time and money remodeling that store only close it soon afterwards.

At that point the one in Langley Park was the closest Toys R Us store to my home. Compared to the Laurel store or even the New Carrollton store, that Langley Park store was a major hot mess. The floors had scruff marks everywhere and the shelves were totally messy and disorganized. It was almost like no one cared about having that store looked its best so it would encourage customers to return. I don’t know if the clientele had anything to do with the store deciding not to do much to keep up appearances or not. (Many immigrants, mainly from Central America and the Caribbean, started to settle in Langley Park starting in the 1980’s.)

Early one morning the bodies of two men were found in the parking lot of the Langley Park Toys R Us. Each of the men have had their their throats slashed. A third man was also knifed and survived. Naturally this story of three immigrant men being attacked in a Toys R Us parking lot was extensively covered by the local news media. Police found out that these slayings were the result of a drug deal gone bad and a suspect was arrested. That Toys R Us store closed soon after that incident.

As a result of those closures, these days if I want to shop at a Toys R Us, I have to drive at least a half-an-hour in any direction in order to get to a store. As a result, my shopping at Toys R Us has become very rare. These days if I need to buy a toy for whatever reason, I’m more likely to go to the Target store that’s located only three miles from my home and it has a pretty decent toy selection.

At this point there are only two Toys R Us left in my county and they require at least (depending on the traffic) a half-an-hour commute. One is a regular Toys R Us store in Clinton and the other is a Toys R Us outlet store at National Harbor. The Clinton store is the one that is among the stores that Toys R Us plan to close soon. Once that happens, my county will only have the outlet store left and no more regular Toys R Us stores.

At one point Toys R Us had opened a giant flagship store at Times Square in New York City. I went there many times whenever my then-husband and I visited his father and step-mother. I used to be awed by the four floors that not only included toys but I remembered there was a giant life-sized version of Barbie’s dreamhouse that you could walk through while browsing the selection of Barbie dolls that were displayed on shelves inside of that house, an animatronic t-rex robot, a giant candy section, and large 3D displays that were built from LEGOs.  In addition there was this giant indoor ferris wheel that was as tall as the store itself so one could see all four floors of the store while going on that ride. I never went on that ride myself because I still have memories the one and only time I went on a ferris wheel when I was seven years old and it literally made me feeling so dizzy that I never cared to repeat that experience. On top of it, the lines to that ferris wheel were usually long and I wasn’t in the mood to wait in a long line to get on a ride. I last went to New York City in 2011 (just a few months before my hip surgery and my husband’s subsequent sudden walkout) and I walked past that store while seeing the ferris wheel through the glass windows from the outside. I’ve heard that this store is now closed, which is too bad. Here’s a video tour of the Times Square store I found on YouTube that was shot shortly before it closed.

As for the chain itself, it has been going through more troubles in recent years. This article said that Toys R Us has an e-commerce site that’s very clunky to use compared to Amazon while also mentioning that kids these days are more likely to play with computers, smartphones, and tablets than traditional toys like Barbie dolls and Lego. Another article said that Toys R Us’ prices are higher than what Walmart, Amazon, and Target charge for the same toy. There is another factor in Toys R Us’ decline and it has less to do with kids’ playtime, their parents’ shopping habits, or the cost of toys and more with the fact that in 2005 the management decided to sell the company in a leveraged buyout to the real estate investment trust Vornado Realty Trust and the private equity firms KKR and Bain Capital. This trio of companies have focused more on doing a complex financial deal that would leave them richer while drowning Toys R Us in debt. It’s the usual Wall Street financial shenanigans that focus more on extracting huge short-term profits for the very wealthy 1%  class and less on operating a viable profitable store chain in the long run.

In a way one could say that karma had finally struck Toys R Us. When that chain first started opening stores throughout the United States in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, a lot of the smaller toy stores that were locally owned were driven out of business because many of them couldn’t compete with the wide selection of toys or the low prices that Toys R Us provided. Now it’s Toys R Us’ turn to eventually get driven out of business through a combination of increased competition (from the likes of Amazon, Walmart, and Target) and being literally milked heavily for profits by a bunch of Wall Streeters.

Of course it’s the employees who are suffering the most due to increased workplace stress and losing their jobs.

Which led me to my recent visit to a Toys R Us store in Annapolis, Maryland. I wanted to pick a store that isn’t among the stores being closed and I ended up picking the one in Annapolis because I decided to attend the weekly Thursday night meeting of my support group for people who are separated or divorced. The meetings are held in Crofton and Annapolis is just a few miles away on Route 50 so it made sense for me to go to the Annapolis store then head back to Crofton for the meeting.

The next photo shows the outside of the store. Some of the stores in this chain are Toys R Us only while other stores are its Babies R Us subsidiary. (The latter store focuses on items for babies and toddlers such as furniture, formula, and diapers.) This location is a larger store that has both Toys R Us and Babies R Us under the same roof.

Here’s what I first saw when I entered the store.

The next photo shows the Fingerlings, robot toys which were THE Hot Toy of 2017. These critters were sold out everywhere just before Christmas and these toys were sold on eBay for several times the original $15 retail price. As of late January I saw a few of these toys on the store shelves at the original retail price.

There was a section devoted to toys that were based on recent movies, such as Coco and Batman vs. Superman.

The store was nearly empty when I visited it. I know that the fact that I visited it on a Thursday in late January was a major factor. But this particular Toys R Us is located across the street from Annapolis Mall and I noticed that the mall was filling up with cars when I was leaving the area yet Toys R Us was mostly empty.

The store had a few Toys R Us exclusive toys, such as this Funko Pop! vinyl set featuring Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

They had some retro video games based on Space Invaders and the old Sega Genesis console system on the shelves yet they kept the games for the newer console systems kept behind locked cases.

Curiously Toys R Us had a bunch of Sharper Image products that it was selling on its store shelves. (The Sharper Image is a separate store chain that specializes in upscale electronic products.) This store sold mainly robot dinosaurs.

Toys R Us had an entire display devoted to last year’s hot trend, Fidget Spinners. (Remember them? I certainly do.)

Toys R Us carried a few American Girl dolls but they were all of the 14-inch Wellie Wishers.

This next item was among some of the more unusual toys I found on sale. This one is a Bear Surprise, where each bear is a pregnant female who could carry anywhere between 3-5 cubs. (The person wouldn’t know for sure until after he/she purchases a Bear Surprise and take her home.)

The one thing I most remember about Toys R Us is its mascot, Geoffrey Giraffe. I remember when that store used to sell Geoffrey Giraffe stuffed animals where the giraffe wore a sweater with the Toys R Us logo. I didn’t see any stuffed Geoffrey Giraffes on sale. In fact, I didn’t see much of Geoffrey Giraffe anywhere in this store except for this graphic. It’s obvious that they’ve redesigned him but he looks incredibly lame compared with the Geoffrey Giraffe I knew when I was growing up. It was like someone decided to make Geoffrey into this bland forgettable character that would blend in with a corporate environment. I can’t imagine any child being enthusiastic about this Geoffrey Giraffe.

The Journey Girls are 18-inch dolls that are Toys R Us’ answer to the ever-popular American Girl doll. They cost around $40, which is cheaper than American Girl’s $110 dolls.

Curiously Toys R Us had a section devoted to jewelry from Claire’s (which is a separate retail chain that sells jewelry and other accessories).

Here’s another Toys R Us exclusive I found, a Zoomer robot unicorn.

Naturally Toys R Us had a line of Star Wars toys.

They had a whole shelf full of Sharper Image drones.

Here are some more toys I found at Toys R Us, which includes Wonder Woman, Gremlins, and even a stuffed Godzilla plush.

I remember when Teddy Ruxpin first came out back in the 1980s and I saw news stories about this teddy bear. I was amazed by the animatronic technology back then even though this product was aimed at young children and I didn’t have any young children of my own. Teddy Ruxpin has been re-released and he’s compatible with a smartphone app and Bluetooth.

Toys R Us had a section devoted to bikes, small cars that children could ride in, and rollerblades.

Here’s another shot of an empty store aisle.

Toys R Us had an arts and crafts section including a shelf dedicated to nothing but Crayola products.

A quarter of the store was devoted to Babies R Us, which had cribs, blankets, and other products geared towards infants and toddlers.

Here’s a shot of the hall in the Babies R Us section that has the restrooms.

Toys R Us had a couple of STEM-focused high tech toys that are designed to encourage making and coding but they were pretty small compared to what Target and Best Buy offer.

They had a bunch of shelves devoted to board games. Some were the games I knew from my childhood, such as Rock’Em Sock’Em Robots, while others were definitely ones I hadn’t heard of before.

There was an aisle devoted entirely to LEGO products.

This one was another interesting item where you create your own version of a Kinder Surprise Egg.

Toys R Us had toy vacuum cleaners and toy irons for those budding young housewives.

I remember when Zhu Zhu Pets were the big Hot Toy way back in 2009. Like Fingerlings, Zhu Zhu Pets were sold out in stores everywhere just before the holiday season but then they became plentiful once Christmas passed. I haven’t seen Zhu Zhu Pets on sale anywhere in my area in a few years so I was surprised when I found them at Toys R Us.

Toys R Us also had Barbie dolls on sale along with newer dolls, such as the DC Super Hero Girls dolls.

I saw one discount bin full of polar bear Christmas ornaments.

I found a few dolls and plush based on Disney’s Moana movie and Nintendo’s Super Mario Bros. video game series.

I decided to make one purchase. The woman at the cash register offered me a free frequent rewards card. I accepted it even though I rarely shop at Toys R Us these days and I don’t know when I’ll make another trip to any Toys R Us store in my area. (Like I wrote earlier, most of those stores are located at least a 30-minute trip from my home.) I have to admit that the card is pretty colorful.

Here’s the one purchase I made. I bought a $15 Fingerlings monkey for the heck of it. I shot a video of the first time I played with this baby monkey, which I’ll write about in my next post.

UPDATE (March 8, 2018): Toys R Us is now seriously considering liquidating all of its stores in the U.S. That chain had recently started doing the same in the U.K. I’m glad I managed to take these photos of the Annapolis store when I did because I now have a time capsule of what a typical Toys R Us store was like when it was in business.

UPDATE (March 14, 2018): It’s official! After 70 years in business, Toys R Us will close its remaining 800 stores, including the one in Annapolis where I took the photos in this post.

UPDATE (April 10, 2018): I made a return trip to the Annapolis Toy R Us store where I was able to compare what I saw on that subsequent trip with the photos I took for this blog post.

Logan Paul (and the internet) need to stop treating Japan as clickbait.

Violence is not at the result of mental illness. Violence is the result of anger.

Why public apologies from public figures are meaningless theater.

Centrist Democrats may not call black and brown communities shitholes—but they treat them that way.

10+ incredible photos you won’t believe are not Photoshopped.

Tax rogues like Bono are harming the world’s poorest.

We estimated how much taxes Donald Trump has dodged over 40 years and it’s mind-blowing.

White feminism is a threat to social justice and democracy.

This 27-year-old founder of The Starling Project quit Wall Street in order to bring solar power to the world.

The tragic story of Althea Garrison, the first transgender person to hold state office in America.

The concept of the weekend is dying.

Employee fired after donating her kidney to help her boss.

Man proposes to his art-loving girlfriend by hanging artwork in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.

Sears crash shows capitalism is morally bankrupt.

Here are the two worst liberal reactions to Al Franken’s sexual abuse allegations.

Trump is the leader of a cult of whiteness and greed.

17 creepy photographs you won’t believe aren’t faked.

American hyper-capitalism breeds the lonely, alienated men who become mass killers.

Five eye-opening documentaries about religious cults.

American Flag

When I read about the origins of Labor Day I started to feel that it’s such a shame that the holiday had devolved into just an excuse to go shopping and do some last-minute outdoor summer activity before fall kicks in. We really should think about the men and women who literally risked their lives and livelihoods so the workers can enjoy such benefits as being able to take weekends off. Especially in this day and age when there seems to be a trend towards going back to the way things used to be during the Industrial Revolution where workers were essentially expendable and they frequently weren’t even looked upon as human beings.

It was this attitude that resulted in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire in 1911. I was at the original site of that fire in New York City back in 2011, just a few days after the observance of the 100th anniversary of that tragedy. The original building still stands but it’s now known as the Brown Building and it’s part of the New York University campus.

Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centennial Anniversary

You can look at other pictures I took in New York City on the same day right here.

Beauty blogger and her new husband ruined their wedding photographer’s reputation over a $125 fee, so a jury told them to pay her $1 million.

Sorry, Google memo man: women were in tech long before you.

How a Maryland town is turning its New Deal past into a new economy present.

An Indian woman was born into the Dalit caste, which made her “untouchable” by society. Despite the odds, she managed to immigrate to America where she became the first Indian woman to be employed as a conductor on the New York Subway.

Adobe to (finally) pull the plug on Flash, for real this time.

She encouraged a girl she babysat to continue with her interest in art. Eleven years later she got this letter.

The Italian highlanders who may have Scottish roots.

World’s oldest smiley face found on a jug from 1700 B.C.E.

Meet Anatomic Anna and Andy, dolls with removable organs.

Extinguished, a stunning animated short, will positively melt your heart.

Interactive art center Meow Wolf is forging a new business model for artists.

11 women who did groundbreaking things that men got the credit for.

The British Museum creates 3D models of the Rosetta Stone and 200+ other historic artifacts for free download or view in virtual reality. 

How the plastic pink flamingo became an icon.

A free tutorial on how to make a cardboard geodesic dome den.

An entire Manhattan village owned by African Americans was destroyed to build Central Park.

Why the myth of meritocracy hurts children of color.

Comic Parchment, the ultimate font.

Play The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy video game, which was designed by author Douglas Adams in 1984, for free online.

Microsoft Paint avoids brush with death.

Tutorials—some free—on how to make doll clothes for any size or shape of your doll.

Why the death of malls is about more than shopping.

How to get your Instagram marketing off the ground.

After a century of dispute, the German alphabet just got a new character.

In her first act as a Disney Legend, Whoopi Goldberg tells Disney to stop hiding its history.

Artist Leticia Santos finds geometric inspiration in D.C.’s row houses.

Black Southern Baptist minister renounces church over its Trump support in a scathing open letter.

An open letter to Rev. Franklin Graham from a “small church” pastor.

Download 200+ Belle Époque art posters from 1880-1918 for free.

A new low: “Photo community” asks for (and gets) free commercial license to photos.

Growing paper clothes in rural Japan.

The extraordinary reason exceptional people avoid mediocre friends. (They rewire your brain.)

Colorizing an early 1900s photo of New York brings it to life.

12 tips to being a better photo blogger.

A history of why the U.S. is the only rich country without universal health care.

The best worst reactions to the news that the next Doctor Who will be a woman.

Honda debuts a one-of-a-kind “Minnie Van.”

This untouched 70s home is the grooviest thing you’ll see all year.

An attempt at a world record for the most Frida Kahlo lookalikes in one place.

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