The Extent of our Great Love Affair With Cheese

Ely Marie

Regardless of how cheese came about, it is evident that cheese production has significantly increased and found its way to nearly every continent on the face of earth. Cheese has evolved culturally, with new variations birthed from creativity and a passion for all things cheese. Fairly new cheeses to the market, which arrived only about 500 years ago, include Gouda, Parmesan, and Cheddar. It is surprising to learn that these more poplar cheeses are relative babies when compared to its ancient counterparts, such as the curd varieties. 

Remembering the Genius of Kurt Vonnegut and ‘Slaughterhouse-Five’

Adam Gravano

As a young man, few books exerted anything like the formative power held by Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five. Despite the grim acceptance of a world with conflict and war, Vonnegut still fell into writing an anti-war book, perhaps an anti-war book highly ranked among the best. This year marks the 50th anniversary of its publication, and, accordingly, Modern Library has released a new edition with a foreword by Kevin Powers. And, as the foreword shows in splendid detail, the lessons of Slaughterhouse-Five are just as relevant today as they were in 1969. 

The Serious and the Smirk: The Smile in Portraiture

Nicholas Jeeves

Such is the field upon which the mouth in portraiture has been debated: an ongoing conflict between the serious and the smirk. The most famous and enduring portrait in the world functions around this very conflict. Millions of words have been devoted to the Mona Lisa and her smirk – more generously known as her ‘enigmatic smile’ — and so today it’s difficult to write about her without sensing that you’re at the back of a very long and noisy queue that stretches all the way back to 16th century Florence. 

Photo Essay: The Antique Cars of Cuba Get a New Life

Eliot Hess

Returning to Cuba after a six-year absence, I was surprised to see that many of the old cars from the 1940s and 1950s  were newly refurbished and being used as taxis and touring cars. I learned that their owners were now allowed to use them as commercial vehicles if they fixed them to certain standards. A number of the old cars are still in bad shape, but to see so many revitalized and brought back to life is good news for these iconic cars that have been a longtime symbol of Cuban society and culture.

        

And the U.S. States With the Rudest Customers Are…

Christopher Elliott

“For example, Midwesterners have a reputation for being friendly and down-to-earth, but of the four regions, customers from the Midwest rated their customer service reps tougher than anyone else,” he says. “Likewise, Northeasterners have a reputation for being more tough and direct, but customers from this region provided the highest marks for the customer service reps they interacted with.”

Save the Bees, Save the Planet

Jennifer Vickers

Bees are responsible for pollinating more than just crops for human consumption.  A study by the University of California concluded that honey bees account for one-eighth of all pollination of non-agricultural crops across the globe.  In short, bees make life possible for an incalculable number of ecosystems.  As has been widely reported, bee populations are in decline.  

Entrepreneurship vs. Employment: Which Avenue Provides Happiness?

Caitlin Cohen

For example, there are a lot of rose-colored ideas of what it means to be an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs may get to make their own schedules and not have a corporate contract committing them to a set time period. However, most of their time isn’t committed to themselves. In order to successfully run a business, an entrepreneur must consistently focus on their business. 

Paying Homage to the Brilliant World of Comics and Graphic Novels

The Editors

This exhibition is curated by Kathleen Goncharov, senior surator at the museum. She recruited as her “muse” for this exhibition Calvin Reid, the senior news editor at Publishers Weekly and a leading expert in the field of comics. Reid was one of the first critics to recognize comics as a literary form for adults, and selected the comic books and graphic novels in the reading room where the public can comfortably lounge and enjoy reading (many from Reid’s own private library). 

The Rise and Fall of the Sassy Brand on Social Media

Angelo Franco

For approximately four years now, big food brands have enjoyed an almost ubiquitous presence on social media. This is not the run-of-the-mill postings of seasonal promotions and retweets of pictures of syrupy pancakes; rather, food and food chain brands have begun to base their online presence on relatable content and pop culture riffs, using direct interaction with social media users to spread dank memes and savage clapbacks. 

The Best and Worst of the 2019 Summer Travel Season

Christopher Elliott

Southwest retreated 1 percent to 79, tied for second place with JetBlue (which was unchanged). Since 2012, the two airlines have taken the top spots in the ACSI ratings, joined by a steadily improving Alaska. "Recent deadly crashes of the Boeing 737 Max for Ethiopian Airlines and Air Lion have left Southwest particularly vulnerable to safety concerns," says VanAmburg. (Southwest operates an all-737 fleet.)

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