The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Josh Clark

Edgar Allen Poe, 1849 - not long before he died. (handout art input on 01/04/06) emailed.
Edgar Allen Poe, 1849 - not long before he died. (handout art input on 01/04/06) emailed.

My Own Life In the New York Times, Dr. Oliver Sacks writes about learning he has just a few months to live.

How crazy am I to think I actually know where that Malaysia Airlines plane is? In New York magazine, Jeff Wise writes about his experience as a CNN aviation analyst following the disappearance of MH370.

Nice to Meat You On New Inquiry, Adam Kotsko explores precisely all of the things that made the Creepy Burger King creepy.

On Edgar Allen Poe In the New York Review of Books, Marilynne Robinson examines the generally misunderstood American author.

The Most Dangerous Idea in Mental Health In Pacific Standard, Ed Cara writes about the popular and clinical myth of recovered memories and the devastating effects they've had on families.

We Shall Never Know: Murder, Money and the Enduring Mystery of Greystone Mansion On KCET's site, Hadley Meares writes about the scandalous murders at an L.A. landmark.

Meet the Shaggs In a 1999 article in the New Yorker, Susan Orlean writes about a family band that put out what some consider one of the poorest records ever produced.

"That Joke Has Everything": David Letterman Before Late Night Deadspin republishes a 1981 Esquire article by Peter Kaplan about David Letterman on the cusp of attaining lasting stardom.

Why testosterone is the drug of the future On Fusion, Alexis C. Madrigal writes about biohacking using the hormone testosterone, both to combat the effects of aging and for transition among transgender men.

The surprising history of hippy crack On BoingBoing, Linda Rodriguez writes about nitrous oxide.

Life in the Algorithm On AdBusters, Douglas Haddow connects Adam Smith's Invisible Hand to Big Data's all-knowing algorithm.

Wake No More On Matter, Virginia Hughes writes about hypersomnia, a little-understood disorder that causes persistent sleepiness in sufferers.

It's official: Americans should drink more coffee In the Washington Post, Robert A. Ferdman writes about some gratifying news.

What kind of funny is he? In the London Review of Books, Rivka Galchen explores the comic aspect of Franz Kafka's life and work.

Witches of Chiloé On Compass Cultura, Mike Dash writes about an amazing lost chapter in the history of Chile.

The mystery of Mingering Mike: The soul legend who never existed In the Guardian, Jon Ronson writes about his accidental discovery of a previously-overlooked artist.

A Body for the Body Politic On Slate, Richard Wightman Fox writes about the two-week American tour of Abraham Lincoln's increasingly unpresentable corpse following his assassination.

Death By Deadline, Part One On the Marshall Project's site, Ken Armstrong writes about the shameful executions of potentially innocent people because their lawyers missed their appeal deadlines.

The Wanderers In the Toronto Star, Ann Dempsey writes about a dangerous side effect of dementia.

Time and Distance Overcome NPR publishes an essay by Eula Biss, connecting the emergence of telephone poles with lynching in America.

The Trenchcoat Robbers In a 2o02 article in the New Yorker, Alex Kotlowitz writes about a fascinating and successful duo of bank robbers.

Robocorp On Aeon, David C Morris writes about the advent of self-sustaining corporations capable of being run by currently-available artificial intelligence.

Host in the Shell On the New Inquiry, Sarah Black McCullouch writes an essay examining the language of disease and immunity.

How could a woman just vanish? In the Boston Globe, Kathryn Miles writes about the disappearance of a hiker on the Appalachian Trail.

The Town Without Wi-Fi In the Washingtonian, Michael J Gaynor writes about a small town in West Virginia that is prohibited by federal law from having cellular and wi-fi signals.

Scientist, Spy, Genius: Who Was Bruno Pontecorvo? In the New York Review of Books, physicist Freeman Dyson wonders just how much harm technical spies commit.

My Dad, The Pornographer In the New York Times, Chris Offutt writes about going thorough the papers of his father, a prolific author of pornographic pulp fiction.

The Contestant In the California Sunday Magazine, Daniel Alarcón writes about the national humiliation and death of a game show contestant in Peru.

By Noon They'd Both Be In Heaven In New York Magazine, Hannah Rosin writes about a woman who tried to kill her autistic daughter.

Hoax: The Secret that Truman Capote Took to His Grave Longform reprints a 1992 article by Peter and Leni Gillman about Truman Capote's fabricated last novel.

The murder that has obsessed Italy In The Guardian, Tobias Jones writes about a murder investigation that has turned up lots of skeletons in the closets of a small town.

The Man Who Tried To Redeem The World With Logic On Nautilus, Amanda Gefter writes about the tragedy of the scientist who tried to create the first artificial intelligence.

The Time Everyone 'Corrected' The World's Smartest Woman On Pricenomics, Zachary Crockett writes about the tenacity of misinterpreting the Monty Hall Problem.