Monday, November 12, 2018

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FYI, the S.H.Figuarts Pikachu is 42% off right now.

"Finnish soldiers find 'secret Russian military bases' after raiding mysterious island"

Independent:

The island also has nine piers, a helipad, a swimming pool draped in camouflage netting and enough housing – all of it equipped with satellite dishes – to accommodate a small army.

The whole thing is so strange that the raid on 22 September, one of 17 in the same area on the same day, has stirred fevered speculation in Finland that the island’s real owner could be the Russian military.

"The testimony of military officers had already started to shift the gender of the wristlet"

LQ:

Since the eighteenth century, gentlemen who needed to tell time—and wanted to display their wealth—carried pocket watches, either an open-faced design or a model with a spring-loaded cover to protect its delicate hands and face from damage. Most ordinary people didn’t need to know that it was seven thirty in the evening rather than dusk; they told time by church bells, sunrises, and habit. It wasn’t until the expansion of railroads in the middle of the nineteenth century that minutes truly became measured, timetabled, and synchronized. But for a solider going to war, a pocket watch was cumbersome and fragile; it took time to remove it from a pocket, open the case, and put it away safely. The alternative, strapping a watch to one’s wrist, seemed obvious but presented a quite different, and stickier, problem. “Wristlets,” as they were known until the 1920s, were designed for women. As the name implies, they were essentially bracelets designed for showing off jewels (and shapely wrists), and were equipped with a tiny watch face for decoration rather than practicality. It would take one of the twentieth century’s greatest rebranding campaigns to persuade military men to strap time to their wrists.

The company that would become Rolex already understood the importance of branding. Hans Wilsdorf, a twenty-four-year-old German orphan who had apprenticed with a Swiss watchmaker, founded a company in London in 1905 to import small, precise watch movements from Switzerland. The business was initially called Wilsdorf & Davis, after the founder and his brother-in-law and partner, Alfred Davis. Wilsdorf invented the name “Rolex” a few years later and incorporated the company under that name in 1915, by which point it was simple common sense for a British business to shed any German associations. Wilsdorf claimed that he simply combined letters of the alphabet until he found a combination that was easy to pronounce in any language and short enough to fit on a small watch face. He later mythologized the moment of creation—“One morning, while riding on the upper deck of a horse-drawn omnibus along Cheapside in the City of London, a genie whispered ‘Rolex’ in my ear”—and suggested that the name mimicked the sound a watch made when it was being wound. The quest for the perfect name was reflected in Wilsdorf’s pursuit of accuracy, and his determination to transform the image of the wristwatch. By the outbreak of the war, Rolex had been awarded certificates of “chronometric precision” from Bienne, Switzerland, and Kew Observatory in London, distinctions that had never before been awarded to a “bracelet watch.” Watchmakers had triumphed over the technical challenges; now the problem was sex.

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Scientist/Tank Transformer is 65% off



PX-08 Asclepius is $34.99 off at the BBTS.

"How did [Larry Nassar] deceive so many for so long?"

The Cut:

“They were one another’s best lives. It was like a cult, and I don’t say that in a bad way.” Trinea’s sisters excelled at volleyball and basketball; Dawn noted that there was less cultlike intimacy on these teams. When Trinea was selected for Geddert’s team at 9 years old, Dawn was required to attend a meeting. “One hundred percent of the girls will be injured,” she recalls a coach saying. “But we have a trainer right here.”

...

According to Sands, Nassar maxed out two credit cards working his way up, cementing a reputation as someone who could identify an injury, concoct a plan, and get an athlete back on the floor. Liked and trusted and ever present, he knew the body and knew the sport. Whereas another doctor might ban an injured athlete from competing altogether, Nassar could tell her which tricks were still safe to perform.

...

The prestige conferred on Nassar by his volunteer position at the Olympics, by both the parents of gymnasts and clinical sports medicine in general, is hard to overstate and hard, from the outside, to understand. That Nassar was an inexperienced physician who had just finished his residency in ’96 did not seem to matter, because in sports medicine the caliber of athlete one treats is taken to be correlated with curative power. Hospitals pay millions of dollars for the privilege of treating sports teams; UC–San Diego Health, for example, pays $1 million to treat the Padres.

...

his best cover — the story that would get him out of police stations and back into exam rooms — was not in fact pseudoscientific bullshit. As his career progressed, he began to develop a research interest in the musculature of the pelvis: the sacrotuberous ligament in particular.

...

Like many women and many parents of female athletes, Kristen knew of treatments that involve vaginal penetration; Chloe’s chiropractor had mentioned something.

...

MSU Title IX investigator Kristine Moore launched her own investigation. She interviewed three osteopathic physicians and one athletic trainer. All four found Nassar’s conduct to be medically appropriate. All of them worked for MSU and knew Nassar personally. Dr. William Strampel, the dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine at MSU, instructed Nassar to have a chaperone in the room and avoid skin-to-skin contact, though he never enforced these new rules and Nassar would not follow them. Strampel has since been arrested and charged with, among other things, sexually harassing and groping female medical students.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

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Available at G1988.

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Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky is terrific

Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award.

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