Top Nonfiction Books: “97,196 Words: Essays” By Emmanuel Carrère (NYT)

From a New York Times online review:

97,196 Words Essays by Emmanuel Carrère 2019At the trial, experts analyzed and propounded, and he himself spoke lucidly and in apparent control. Yet Carrère, on hand to cover the proceedings for Le Nouvel Observateur, remarks that those in the courtroom “have had ample time to wonder, from the height of our clinical ignorance and flying in the face of four psychiatric experts, if he really belonged in a criminal court, and if what you felt on your nape wasn’t the cold wind of psychosis.” He ends his two-part article this way: “Behind his glass enclosure, Romand listens expressionless. No one knows what he’s thinking, not even him.”

“At dawn on Monday, Jan. 11, 1993, the fire brigade came to put out a fire in a house in Prévessin-Moëns, a small village in France’s Ain department, near the Swiss border. They found the partially charred bodies of a woman and two children, and a badly burned man, who was taken to the hospital in a critical state.”

So begins the first account by Emmanuel Carrère (now reprinted in “97,196 Words,” his new collection of essays) of the horrifying case of Dr. Jean-Claude Romand that galvanized France: No one had heard of anything like it; no one could understand it. Yet the facts were incontestable, the verdict and sentence assured: guilty, and life imprisonment, the death penalty being a thing of the past in France. (In fact, he was released from prison just this past spring, after serving 26 years.)

To read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/12/books/review/97196-words-emmanuel-carrere.html?te=1&nl=books&emc=edit_bk_20191220?campaign_id=69&instance_id=14730&segment_id=19794&user_id=415092ec82728104b9ca7bbb44eeb7d3&regi_id=7441254120191220

Baby Boomer Economics: American 50+ Population Would Be World’s Third Largest Economy (AARP)

From an AARP.org online article:

AARP Real Possibilities logo“As the number of people over 50 grows, that age cohort is transforming markets and sparking new ideas, products and services across our economy,” AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins says. “And as people extend their work lives, they are fueling economic growth past the traditional retirement age.

AARP People 50+ are a growing economic engine that benefits society now and in the future December 20 2019

Americans age 50 and up contribute so much to the U.S. economy that they’d constitute the world’s third-largest economy if they were counted as their own country, a major new AARP study finds.

The economic contributions of 50-plus Americans totaled $8.3 trillion last year, which puts them just behind the U.S. and China when measured by gross domestic product.

And that economic impact will grow significantly in decades to come, tripling to more than $28 trillion by 2050 as millennials and Generation Z begin to turn 50 in 2031 and 2047, respectively, the report finds.

To read more: https://www.aarp.org/politics-society/advocacy/info-2019/older-americans-economic-impact-growth.html?cmp=EMC-DSO-NLC-RSS—CTRL-122019-P1-4245164&ET_CID=4245164&ET_RID=46870725&encparam=tVgeMOhoNxx%2bfrc9AGTzSoruA9hrsex1YvrQ7Ez59ks%3d

Best Design & Food: “KILN” Thai Restaurant, London (Dan Preston LTD)

From a Spectator Life online article:

KILN Soho London Thai Restaurant Designed by Dan Preston LTDWith just four tables, a few counter seats and no reservations, getting a spot at Kiln can be a challenge. But it is one that is absolutely worth the wait.

Chosen as the UK’s Best Restaurant in the 2018 National Restaurant Awards, this Soho hotspot specialises in a roadside barbeque style of Thai cooking. The kiln it is named after is the hulking stove which dominates the restaurant. On it sits countless rustic claypots from which wafts a tempting mix of palm sugar, sweet basil and hot charcoal.The 22 seats along the steel counter are the best in the house, as you can watch the chefs scrupulously chopping, flipping and searing ingredients – most of which have been picked or caught just a few hours before.

Dan Preston LTD Design Studio London
http://www.danpreston.co.uk/

At less than £7, the baked glass noodles with Tamworth pork belly and brown crab meat is probably the best value dish in London.

To read more: https://life.spectator.co.uk/articles/the-five-best-thai-restaurants-in-london/

Top Hotels: “Gorgeous George Hotel In Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town’s Gorgeous George hotel exhibits the best of local design says interior architect Tristan du Plessis, in this video produced by Dezeen for the AHEAD awards. Gorgeous George, which was named Hotel of the Year at the 2019 AHEAD Gorgeous George Hotel Cape Town South AfricaMiddle East and Africa hospitality awards, is a 36-room renovation of a pair of historic buildings in downtown Cape Town, South Africa.

 

The project was the most heavily-awarded hotel at the ceremony, also taking home awards in the Renovation, Restoration & Conversion, Suite and Visual Identity categories. Located in downtown Cape Town, Gorgeous George is a boutique hotel designed for both visitors and locals to enjoy, according to du Plessis.

“We set out to create an urban hotel, a hotel that became the lounge for the local neighbourhood,” he says in the video interview, which was filmed by Dezeen in Dubai on the day of the awards ceremony.

Top New Innovations: “Freflow” Water And Wind Powered Portable Generator (Worthington)

The Blades

The conical 3 blade Archimedes turbine channels air or water from up to 60 degrees of the central axis, making it far more efficient than traditional turbine designs, ideal for natural power generation when out in the wilderness.

To read and see more: https://www.behance.net/alexworthington

 

 

Homebuilding: World’s Biggest “3D Printed” Building Completed

World's Biggest 3D Printed Buiding in Dubai Dezeen video December 20 2019Robotic construction company Apis Cor has used its technology to build the world’s largest 3D-printed building, a two-storey administrative office in Dubai. 

Measuring 9.5 metres high with a floor area of 640 square metres, Apis Cor built the record-breaking structure for the Dubai Municipality. Apis Cor developed a gypsum-based material to run through the printer and sourced a local producer. The printing took place out in the open, to prove that the technology could handle a harsh environment without humidity and temperature control.

Best TV Ads Of 2019: Ryan Reynolds “Aviation Gin” Parody Ads Are “Brilliant Marketing” (Videos)

From a Marketing Land online article:

Soon after the spot aired, actor and liquor brand owner Ryan Reynolds cashed in on the drama – and marketers everywhere scrambled to pick their jaws up off the floor. The ad spot for Ryan Reynold’s liquor brand, Aviation Gin, cast the same actress from the Peloton ad — in a sequel that tells the story of where the Peloton Woman is now. Spoiler: She’s downing Aviation Gin in a bar with two friends, wallowing in the aftermath of Peloton’s ill-conceived commercial. We’ll toast to that.

It’s the holiday ad that caught fire for all the wrong reasons: A young, seemingly fit woman is gifted a Peloton stationary bike (presumably by her husband) and proceeds to vlog her fitness journey over the course of a year.

The ad, produced by creative agency Mekanism, went viral almost immediately, sparking criticism about Peloton’s unhealthy depictions of body image and marriage – not to mention the “Peloton Woman’s” concerning expressions (which some have quipped resembles a face of fear). Naturally, Twitter users couldn’t contain themselves, dragging the cringe-worthy campaign with labels like sexist, elitist, and entirely unrealistic.

To read more: https://marketingland.com/how-the-peloton-woman-in-aviation-gins-ad-will-be-a-case-study-on-marketing-genius-for-years-to-come-272503

Classic Car Nostalgia: “1965 Ford Thunderbird Convertible”

From Wikipedia:

1965 Ford Thunderbird Convertible Classic Driver December 2019The revised model was initially offered as a hardtop, convertible, Sports Roadster with dealer-installed tonneau cover and wire wheels, and Landau with vinyl roof, simulated landau irons, and wood grain interior appointments. Total 1964 sales were excellent: 92,465, up nearly fifty per cent from the previous year, but with only 50 Sports Roadster kits were sold from the factory. The 1964 Thunderbird was the only car of this generation to have the word ‘Thunderbird’ spelled out on the front hood instead of a chrome Thunderbird emblem. The only transmission available was the Cruise-O-Matic MX 3 speed automatic.

Classic Driver logoThe fourth generation of the Ford Thunderbird is a large personal luxury car produced by Ford for the 1964 to 1966 model years. This generation of the Thunderbird was restyled in favor of a more squared-off, “formal” look. The Thunderbird’s sporty image had by that time become only that: the standard 390-cubic-inch 300 bhp (224 kW) V8 engine needed nearly 11 seconds to push the heavy T-bird to 60 mph (96 km/h). The softly sprung suspension allowed considerable body lean, wallow, and float on curves and bumps. Contemporary testers felt that the Buick Riviera and Pontiac Grand Prix were substantially more roadworthy cars, but the Thunderbird retained its leading market share.

To view more photos: https://www.classicdriver.com/en/car/ford/thunderbird/1965/725139

Politics: Key Moments From 6th Democratic Debate (PBS Video)

At the sixth Democratic debate–hosted by PBS NewsHour and POLITICO — the seven Democrats who are vying for their party’s presidential nomination in 2020, took on the issues of healthcare, immigration, race and impeachment. The debate on Dec. 19 was also the last of 2019. Watch the major moments from the debate between former Vice President Joe Biden, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Bernie Sanders, businessman Tom Steyer and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.