Money, Backstage, Leaks, Collage, Yunnan

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Two Decades Without Money

Tori Marlan | Capital Daily | 14th July 2021

Conversation with a Canadian man, David Johnston, who claims to have lived relatively comfortably for almost twenty years without using money, and destroying any cash that comes his way. "Johnston throws found change into garbage bins and cuts out serial numbers on bills. Before 2011, when banknotes were made of paper instead of polymer, he could just burn them" (6,690 words)

The Last Black Stage

Harmony Holiday | Believer | 1st June 2021

Joyous and sad, angry and lyrical, the writing ripples outwards from its literal premise that "backstage" is the best place to be at jazz and blues clubs, to its wider argument that the sub-set of Black life performed in a mostly-white public gaze merely hints at an infinitely richer Black life going on "backstage". Illustrated with cameos of John Coltrane, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone et al (2,800 words)

The Leakage Problem

Alon Levy | Pedestrian Observations | 23rd July 2021

Exemplary. A seemingly dull subject made gripping: The difficulties of funding infrastructure efficiently. Even when the money is there, you have to buy off bad actors and rival interest groups to get good things done. A tribute also to the general excellence of Pedestrian Observations, sure to reward the attention of any reader interested in public transport and public choice (1,960 words)

Audio of the Week: Before They Met Their Inevitable Fate

41256 | An Audio Commonplace | 25th November 2018

Short collage made out of snatches overheard on BBC radio. The whole feed functions like an audio commonplace book. Each extract is skilfully reedited, with the originals linked if any pique your interest. This one connects together three different but impassioned monologues. For the ultimate union of medium and message, the last clip is from a programme about editing audio (4m 14s)

Interview Of The Week: Dan Wang In Conversation With Baiqu Gonkar

Browser Interviews | 25th July 2021

Dan Wang is a Shanghai-based writer who covers technology at Gavekal Dragonomics. He talks here to The Browser's Baiqu Gonkar about understanding Xi Jinping, the development of cities in China and America, why Cosi Fan Tutte is Mozart's best Italian opera, the joys of Yunnan cooking, and what board games reveal about human nature. (26:14, or read the transcript here)

"I have never been modest enough to demand less of myself"
— Friedrich Nietzsche

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