Sunday, June 30, 2019

       New Stoppard play

     I can never forget,

but no matter how much it hurts,

how dark it gets,

or no matter how far you fall,

Former government minister offers explosive character assessment of Scott Morrison in new book

LIKE TOM, I’D LIKE TO SEE THIS FAST, PLEASE: Wow: Scientists May Have Promising Cure For Baldness.

The Daily Mail noted, “On Thursday, the more advanced process was presented at the conference and involves placing 3D biodegradable scaffolds – made from the same material as dissolvable stitches – with mouse epithelial cells combined with human dermal papilla cells and placed under the skin of nude mice, which lack body hair. When the biodegradable scaffold disappears, all that's left is healthy hair growing as normal.”

 They've announced that Tom Stoppard has a new play coming out, Leopoldstadt, premiering on the West End on 25 January in a production directed by Patrick Marber -- there's even already an official site.  
       See also for example Mark Brown's piece in The Guardian, Jewish district inspires Tom Stoppard in 'personal' new play. 

Mrs. T posted this message and photograph on her Facebook page yesterday. I asked her if I could make them more widely available, and she agreed. I hope they will give you some idea of how gallantly she is fighting back against the ravages of pulmonary hypertension and sepsis. In addition, her message will answer some of the questions you’ve been asking me.
I am proud beyond imagining to have been blessed with such a partner. Her courage inspires my awe. May she soon receive the Big Call.
*  *  *

My arms, with PICC lines and medical pumps attached. Yes, they are heavy and awkward, but I’m grateful to live in a first-world country where, despite all the problems with our health-care system, I’m still alive. My FB friends will probably know that I don’t like to talk about my health here, but I wanted you to know I’m very slowly getting stronger. I am spending 24/7 on the couch (very comfy!) in lieu of a hospital bed, and need to be waited on hand and foot (and my family has stepped up to the plate!).
My Eustachian tubes have closed due to the use of a high-velocity bi-pap, so I am mostly deaf for the time being. Talking still takes a lot of energy, so I won’t want visitors until further notice.
Many, many thanks for all the expressions of support—I am more grateful than you can know.
TO BE FAIR, WE’VE ALL HAD TO LEARN THIS THE HARD WAY: Florida Man Learns the Hard Way That Mixing Pufferfish and Cocaine Is a Very Bad Idea.

Via Jason Kottke

I keep track of every media thing I “consume”, so here are quick reviews of some things I’ve read, seen, heard, and experienced in the past month. I just started reading In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson; I loved his The Devil in the White City. On the TV front, I’m holding off on season 3 of The Handmaid’s Tale and season 2 of Big Little Lies for some reason…don’t want to get sucked into anything right now, I guess. Ditto for catching up on the Historical Cinematic Universe…just not feeling it at the moment. As always, don’t pay too much attention to the letter grades…they’re higher in the summer than in the cold, depressing winter.
Deadwood: The Movie. A fitting end to one of the best shows on TV. It was great to be able to spend a little more time with it. (A-)
Booksmart. I loved this movie. Great soundtrack too. (A)
Thermapen Mk4. Finally got tired of my anxiety about overcooking my meat. Been using it with the reverse sear to great effect. (B+)
Serial season 3. I couldn’t make it through more than two episodes of each of the previous two seasons, but I went the distance on this one. Is the American system of justice just? I doubt it. (A-)
Working by Robert Caro. The DVD extras for The Power Broker and the LBJ books. I don’t have time to read a 3000-page biography of Lyndon Johnson right now, but Working made me want to do it anyway. (A-)
Persuasion System. The latest album from Com Truise. Great for working to. (B+)
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. An idiosyncratic and deeply personal little museum. I felt very much at home there. (A)
Small Steps, Giant Leaps. Apollo 11 artifacts paired with historic scientific tomes from the likes of Galileo & Newton go together like chocolate and peanut butter. (A-)
Mary Queen of Scots. Nothing much here to distinguish this from your usual historical drama. (B)
Toulouse-Lautrec and the Stars of Paris. Great show at the MFA. Was not a particular fan of Toulouse-Lautrec before but perhaps I am now. (A-)
Street Food. Interesting to compare this to David Gelb’s other show, Chef’s Table. Same focus on quality ingredients and serving great food, but very different ends of the economic spectrum. (B+)
Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Caught the peak of the cherry blossoms. Beautiful. But crowded. (A-)
Salt Fat Acid Heat. This wasn’t exactly my cup of tea, but I can see what other people love about it. The final episode is the strongest and I thought Nosrat’s emphasis on shopping as a vital part of cooking was interesting. (B)
Summer in Vermont. It’s been spectacular here lately. (A)
Normal People by Sally Rooney. I burned through this in only two days. (A)
Cumulonimbus Mammatus
Cumulonimbus mammatus. They’re no asperitas clouds, but cumulonimbus mammatus is still one of the best clouds around. (A)
The Ezra Klein Show interview with Alison Gopnik. Gopnik’s ideas about gardeners vs carpenters and explore vs exploit are fascinating frameworks for thinking about human creativity. (A-)
Pachinko by Min Jin Lee. It’s tough to maintain a coherent story told over several generations, but Lee manages it easily. (A-)
No Country for Old Men. Masterful. (A)
Chernobyl. Sometimes bureaucracy is no match for the truth. See also the accompanying podcast. (A-)
The Lives of Others. Got on a bit of a Cold War kick. (A-)
Always Be My Maybe. Strong ending. (B+)
Toy Story 4. Hollywood is often accused of being super liberal, but I thought the values depicted in this movie were quite conservative. (B+)
Anima. Thom Yorke’s solid third solo album. (B+)
13 Minutes to the Moon. There’s lots of Apollo stuff out there right now and some of it doesn’t bring anything new to the table. But this podcast from the BBC is substantial, with interviews from key players, including Apollo software engineer Margaret Hamilton, who doesn’t give many interviews these days. (A-)
Bad Times at the El Royale. Rhymes with Tarantino but not that well. This should have been 90 minutes long. (B-)
Long Shot. Why did this flop? It’s not exactly great but it works fine. (B)
Past installments of my media diet are available here.