Browser Daily Newsletter 1333

Hic sunt camelopardus: this historical edition of The Browser is presented for archaeological purposes; links and formatting may be broken.

Steven Pinker: Writing In The 21st Century

Steven Pinker | Edge | 8th June 2014

What psychology and linguistics can teach us about writing well. "When you write, you should pretend that you, the writer, see something in the world that's interesting, that you are directing the attention of your reader to that thing, and that you are doing so by means of conversation. That may sound obvious. But it's amazing how many of the bad habits of academese and legalese come from flouting that model" (6,300 words)

What I Learned By Being Outed

John Browne | Wall Street Journal | 6th June 2014

Former BP chief executive describes his experience of being outed as gay by the "Daily Mail". His first response was to seek a high court injunction; when the story finally broke, he resigned; then he discovered that nobody really minded, and most had already guessed. "Thousands of supportive letters poured in from around the world ... Had I known then what I know now, I would have come out sooner" (835 words)

Good Dog, Small Dog

Wells Tower | Garden & Gun | 4th June 2014

Confessions of a chihuahua owner. "Before I got Edie, I’d have said that a fair definition of an insane person is somebody who takes out a cash advance to pay for exploratory liver surgery for a dog. I did that three years ago. But when you get accustomed, every night, to a warm gentle presence stretching herself across your clavicle and easing you into sleep, it becomes as dire a habit as barbiturate abuse" (1,400 words)

Throw FIFA Out Of The Game

Dave Zirin | New York Times | 6th June 2014

Abolish FIFA. Replace it with two bodies: One to promote soccer, the other to keep the game and the industry clean. Having one body in charge of everything is a recipe for corruption and megalomania. The scandals in Brazil and Qatar expose FIFA as "a battering ram for world leaders who want to use the majesty of the World Cup to push through their development agendas at great human cost" (Metered paywall) (1,050 words)

Churchill’s Last Surviving Daughter

Geoffrey Wheatcroft | New Republic | 6th June 2014

Evelyn Waugh called Winston Churchill "a most unsuccessful father", which was largely correct. "All three of the elder children went wrong, all of them had failed marriages, all of them were undone by drink". One died of drink; another committed suicide. The exception was the youngest, Mary, who died in May aged 92 — "the only one who had grown up safe and sound, to live a long and fulfilled life" ( words)

Video of the day:  How To Move 500,000 Books

What to expect: Stop motion of Foyle's Bookshop in London moving stock to a new main shop

Thought for the day:

"The sad truth is, the truth is sad" — Lemony Snickett

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