Inspired by Josh Gitner and his Fresh Links, I’m making my own collection of links I think are worthy of review. Happy clicking.

May 31, 2020

Listening to Black Voices Amid Murder, Violence, Protest, and Pandemic
Jason Kottke has an incredible round-up of voices everyone should read and share.

SpaceX Pulled It Off
I’m of two minds about this. 1. I love me some space 2. Privatizing space seems bad.

Yes, I’m high on the 2020 Illini, and here’s why
Jeremy Werner justifying his belief in the orange and blue while still keeping his reporter’s cap on.

Can we stop pretending Trump is fit to be president?
Nobody thinks this. Republicans don’t really, deep down inside, think he’s fit. He’s a fucking despicable human being. 

How Many People Can a Sports Stadium Safely Fit in a Pandemic?
Math is hard.

Outraged by Crowded Pool Parties? Just Wait Until Sports Come Back.
More of the same.

Virtual Queues, Empty Rides, and a “Social Distancing Skunk Ape”
Here are some interesting ideas amusement parks have to keep visitors safe as they reopen during a pandemic.

The Remaking of Steve Buscemi
GQ with another of their fantastic profile pieces

Michael J. Fox’s First Act Wasn’t as Important as His Second
A really great profile on Fox and his career.

5 Ways to Build Resilience and Conquer Adversity
I need to reread this a couple of times. I’m definitely not feeling resilient.

Former NASA Engineer Builds a Ninja Warrior Obstacle Course to Stop Nut-Stealing Backyard Squirrels
This is the internet content you came here for and it delivers. It delivers mostly nuts, but you’ll see.

Randy Jackson rejoins Journey after band thwarts attempted coup
The whole coup attempt, firing, and subsequent reorganization of Journey is crazy. The drama is honestly a bit sad. I kind of don’t care, but your mileage may vary.

Priests now shooting (water) guns at babies and food
I roll my eyes in their general direction.

Fresh Content for Stale Days
Begin the streaming wars have.

The President Still Has No Clothes
Trump’s deficiencies have never been more apparent.

Just This Breath
Powerful.

 

May 24, 2020

It’s Probably Not Safe for Sports to Come Back. That May Not Matter.
Will Leitch outlines the risks and the rewards of sports coming back. 

How & Why Lovie Smith Turned Illinois Into ‘Transfer Portal U’
The why is because it works and being a pro coach and treating transfers like free agents has been the best thing this staff has done.

You wanted the best, you got the best: How Kiss came Alive!
This is a really good look at the early days of KISS. 

America Is Officially in ‘Fuck It’ Mode
And more people will die.

Bill Simmons Just Wants to Win
Interesting insight into the guy who sold his sports and entertainment company right before the pandemic shut all the sports and entertainment (mostly) down.

Biden Is Planning an FDR-Size Presidency
I applaud the audacity. I think it’s much more important to pick the right VP and win.

‘It’s never too late’: Scott Spiezio opens up on addiction and moving forward
I was not aware of the Scott Spiezio story. I’m happy he’s on the straight and narrow. 

Cameron Crowe Is Finally Ready to Tell Us Vanilla Sky’s Secrets
Just a great interview regarding a movie that seems so prescient of our times now.

Chris Jericho on His New ’80s KISS Cover Band
This shit is hilarious to me, but I’m a big KISS geek. What I didn’t know was a member of Trixter was in KLASSIK 78…

The End of Podcasting’s Innocence
How interesting. I don’t listen to Rogan’s show so I don’t really care. However, the way Spotify is expanding is something to pay closer attention to as the years go on.

#ReleaseTheSnyderCut
I’m pretty sure there’s no way a new version of Justice League, even with an additional $20M SFX budget, is going to be anything but a goddamn trainwreck. There’s no finding the diamond in the rough here. Maybe I’m wrong. I certainly hope to be pleasantly surprised and everything the peeps want will show up. I do hope they make it something else like a six episode mini-series instead of a movie. 

Dad, how do I?
A YouTube channel filled with practical advice. 

The Science Fiction Writer John Scalzi Readily Quits Reading
Oh, the headline writer had fun that day.

Sammy Hagar: ‘Van Halen Will Never Be Finished’
A true reunion with Sammy and Michael Anthony would make serious bank.

How to Register to Vote
Super important right now considering we have a failed game show host/businessman, tangerine make-up aficionado, hair club for men botch job wearing, rapist, racist, and repugnant human (maybe) in the White House.

 

May 17, 2020

The Verdict: How Illinois fared in its crucial 10-month stretch
Excellent article outlining this most recent Illinois Basketball team, it’s progress, and it’s future.

Prince and the Revolution’s 1985 Live Film Soundtrack Officially Released
Just watch the video, but do it soon.

The real Lord of the Flies: what happened when six boys were shipwrecked for 15 months
I hope this story becomes a movie.

Inside the DEATHSTROKE Movie That Never Happened
It might have been something really great.

The Day the Live Concert Returns
Dave Grohl reminds us that “…together, we are instruments in a sonic cathedral.”

The Big Questions Sports Leagues Have to Answer Before They Reopen
Will Leitch asks all the right questions with unsatisfactory answers.

Why financial battle over 2020 MLB season is about to get really, really ugly
There ain’t gonna be any baseball… I don’t see why anyone thinks otherwise. Wishful thinking I guess. 

Robert Pattinson: A Dispatch From Isolation
GQ with another of their featured interviews. I think Pattinson is playing coy throughout the entire thing. With the interviewer. With the reader. Tenet and The Batman are going to be so good.

Spotify is really the new radio
I have often thought this myself. Especially after spending far too much time in Spotify looking specifically for some new music.

The Great Asshole Fallacy
“If you don’t want to play that way… don’t play that way.” Break.

The Law & Order: SVU theme
This Tic Toc video is an accurate representation of how it came to be

Good Things
Melanie Richards made a personal compilation of good sensory things in life. Nice to be reminded of a few things as we live in the darkest timeline.

 

May 10, 2020

A Supremely Heartfeld, 120-Year Cultural History of Athletes Thanking Their Mom
Happy Mother’s Day

Wealth, shown to scale
Jeff Bezos’s wealth gave me carpal tunnel syndrome.

Was Donald Trump Good at Baseball?
Of course not. None of what he says is true. Why would this be?

What Joe Biden Needs to Do to Beat Trump
First, don’t be Trump.

Academy Award Winner Taika Waititi to Direct and Co-write New Star Wars Feature Film for Theatrical Release, Oscar Nominee Krysty Wilson-Cairns to Co-write Screenplay with Waititi
Okay, aside from being a stupid long headline… we need the details. The information here is not nearly enough. I know you don’t want to give anything away just yet, but at the very least when will this movie take place?

A COVID-19 Admonition
The theme song for 2020.

Amanda Palmer announces separation from Neil Gaiman on Patreon
And I didn’t even know they were together on Patreon. Ha! Seriously, this was an odd pairing and I think Mr. Gaiman will likely rebound much faster than Ms. Palmer who always seems not quite right. Mostly I feel for their son, Ash, who has a hell of a lot to unpack in the years of therapy I fear that are in his future.

Flattening the Truth on Coronavirus
Dave Eggers somehow snuck in a McSweeney’s post into the New York Times again.

Adele on Instagram
Adele posted an Instagram for the first time this year to thank first responders and essential workers. Isn’t that nice… WAIT! WHAT?! HOW MUCH WEIGHT HAS SHE LOST!

Chapter One: ‘The Boy Who Lived’
Daniel Radcliffe reads the first chapter of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone/Sorcerer’s Stone, as part of Harry Potter At Home. This is pretty great.

Georgia Police Arrest and Charge Two Men For the Murder of Ahmaud Arbery
About time.

Little Richard, Founding Father of Rock Who Broke Musical Barriers, Dead at 87
The architect of rock and roll

Sure, the Velociraptors Are Still On the Loose, But That’s No Reason Not to Reopen Jurassic Park
This is so perfect.

 

May 3, 2020

Microsoft Word now flags double spaces as errors, ending the great space debate
I think I’ve finally rid myself of the two-space habit.

What Do Famous People’s Bookshelves Reveal?
This is fascinating to me. Your mileage may vary.

The Scientists Who Won’t Give Up on the Warp Drive
Exotic material seems unlikely to be found, but stranger things have happened.

Georgia’s Experiment in Human Sacrifice
It’s going to be bad.

What if … Albert Pujols had stayed in St. Louis?
A fun little thought exercise.

Hear 25 Unreleased Van Halen Songs: A Hidden History
I’m as big a fan of Van Halen as the next average guy, but I had heard none of these.

Inside the Final Duel: Maul vs. Ahsoka
By far, the best lightsaber duel ever.

Nobody Knows What is Going On
Mark Manson with some nuggets of truth. There is no certainty in an uncertain time.

The Cancer in the Camera Lens
David Roth is one of the best writers working today.

 

April 26, 2020

I Don’t Know How to Tell This Story
Cecily Strong from Saturday Night Live has written a powerful story about grief, love and family. It’s awesome.

The Doctors’ inspiring message to all frontline workers
I do wish Christopher Eccleston would have taken part in this, but alas.

The Coronavirus in America: The Year Ahead
This eye-opening NYT piece by Donald G. McNeil Jr. outlines how this is going to go. It’s mostly about the long miserable slog it’s going to be, with one bright spot. “In the movies, viruses become more deadly. In reality, they usually become less so, because asymptomatic strains reach more hosts. Even the 1918 Spanish flu virus eventually faded into the seasonal H1N1 flu.”

The iPad Magic Keyboard
John Gruber has an exhaustive look at the new keyboard case for the iPad. He doesn’t mess around. 

The President and the Plague
A failure again and again and again…

Shiny, Happy, People in Quarantine
Dave Pell tells us his family’s shelter-at-home story. There’s a couple of things that feel like he might’ve stretched the truth, but I’ll let it slide.

Four-star SG Adam Miller signs with Illinois
Illinois basketball is now recruiting at a level not seen since the early 2000s,

Every COVID-19 Commercial is Exactly the Same
Free marketing advice for CEOs and companies: Create a :30 ad saying, “Instead of paying millions of dollars for an ad during this unprecedented time, we gave the money to our employees to keep them employed.” The positive public perception would be better than any ad campaign.

Tom Hanks replies to Queensland boy bullied over name Corona
He gave him a Corona typewriter because he’s Tom Hanks.

Miley Cyrus: Wish You Were Here (At Home) – SNL
This performance blew me away.

 

April 18, 2020

San Diego Comic-Con 2020 Is Canceled
Unsurprising. Still, pretty late in the game to make the announcement. 

What Makes This Song Great?™ – “Ramble On”
Rick Beato is the internet’s coolest music teacher.

Calling Me a Hero Only Makes You Feel Better
The ads are becoming nauseating.

Why Walt Disney World would be the ideal spot for the NBA to salvage its season
I’m not sure I love this idea to resume the NBA season and playoffs. Interesting theory.

Journey-Separate Ways (Heller Quarantine Edition) Side by Side
The Heller family made a shot-by-shot recreation of Journey’s “Separate Ways.” So much fun.

Behold Dune: An Exclusive Look at Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Oscar Isaac, and More
You may have already seen this, but if not… here you go.

I Went to Hogwarts for Seven Years and Did Not Learn Math or Spelling, and Now I Can’t Get a Job
How did this McSweeney’s post end up in The New Yorker?

A Trackpad and a Mouse Walk Into an iPad…
I’m so close to pulling the trigger on this. I keep going back and forth with the iPad and the new Air.

What a Tragedy.
Wil Wheaton doesn’t pull any punches here.

Trump Finds His Own Dumb Endless War
So tiresome.

 

April 12, 2020

John Krasinski’s Some Good News Episode 2
His first episode had Steve Carrell. This second one is even better. Just you wait.

Lady Antebellum Performs “Islands in the Stream”
This is perfectly uplifting.

John Prine, Who Chronicled the Human Condition in Song, Dies at 73.
Here’s the most apt video: When I Get To Heaven.

White House Coronavirus Task Force Briefing
This piece is satire. The problem is when reality feels like satire, you just want to throw your hands up. “None of this is made up.”

Jesus Christ Do I Miss Sports
Me too.

 

April 5, 2020

The Missing Six Weeks
The failure of this administration regarding the COVID-19 crisis is unprecedented.

Ted Chiang Explains the Disaster Novel We All Suddenly Live In
Never going back to normal and that might be a good thing.

Adam Schlesinger, Emmy Winner and Fountains of Wayne Cofounder, Dies of Coronavirus Complications
So many perfect pop songs were written by him. Sure, you know “Stacy’s Mom,” but that isn’t even the best song on that album (Hint: It’s Little Red Light).

The Worm is Back!
NASA logo introduced it in 1976, it was retired in 1992, now it’s back and it just feels right.

Grover reads The Monster at the End of This Book
Well, sort of Grover.

 

March 29, 2020

Incoming Transmission
Jodie Whitaker as the Doctor is the best.

NINE INCH NAILS GHOSTS V-VI
Here’s the YouTube playlist for online listening.

The Power of Solitude
“A lack of gratitude and a lack of curiosity are two of the most dangerous gaps in life.”

Stewie and Brian made a podcast
This made me laugh.

Sexy Man Falls
This video made me laugh so hard I think my family might have been a tad worried about me.

 

March 22, 2020

The Coronavirus Explained & What You Should Do
Great video on this whole pandemic.

Can Smart Thermometers Track the Spread of the Coronavirus?
I bought one of these as soon as I could.

How to deal with uncertainty
I really like Matt’s videos. Here he entertainingly addresses the current news and feelings without actually mentioning any specifics and makes it smart and interesting all the while providing useful tips on how to control what we can control.

Playboy Magazine Is Closing Down, Probably for Good 
It is going digital for the rest of 2020. It’s possible there will be limited print runs in 2021. Personally, I doubt it.

This Is How Donald Trump Will Be Remembered
As the most incompetent, racist, rapist, and stupid person ever to hold the office of the presidency. He should never have gotten this far and he can’t be allowed to continue. The sooner he is gone the better the world will be.

A Chinese Scholar Dreamed of Coming to America. And Then She Vanished.
This happened in my backyard.

Calm also has a coefficient
“Being up-to-date on the news is a trap and a scam. Five minutes a day is all you need.”

Some People
Some people would like to thank Jason Kottke for writing this.

Washing Your Hands Is Important Because Soap “Absolutely Annihilates” Coronavirus
Wash ya damn hands.

Deadspin* Is a Bad Website
The stupidity… it reeks.

 

March 15, 2020

Seeing clearly: John Groce finds wisdom, success after Illinois
I always liked Coach Groce.

Pete Davidson is Going to Break Our Hearts
Tim Grierson on Pete Davidson.

Pictures of Earth by Planetary Spacecraft
This, as you have perhaps already surmised, is a collection of photos of our homeworld not taken by human beings.

Harvey Weinstein Sentenced to 23 Years in Prison
More than enough.

Isaac Asimov, the candy store kid who dreamed up robots
The first science fiction author I read growing up was Isaac Asimov. My Dad had plenty of Foundation and Robot collections and I devoured them.

One Big Idea 
Dave Perell is a must read. He believes everyone has a unique view of the world and the world is full of opportunities. He’s not wrong.

 

March 8, 2020

Bond Movie ‘No Time to Die’ Delayed Due to Coronavirus
I was really looking forward to this. Everything looks great. Case in point: this poster. Easily the best one since Casino Royale.

Off
Steve Layman points to an exciting concept called “Off.”

Imagine a World Without YouTube
What if NBC killed YouTube in 2006 over “Lazy Sunday?” Imagining an internet where no one pivoted to video.

Neil Postman’s Advice on How to Live the Rest of Your Life
Some interesting ideas.

 

March 1, 2020

Where Is My Mind?
Ben Gordon’s battle with anxiety and mental illness is something I never knew before reading this essay. When you read it, it just flows out. He was obviously just stream of conscience outputting it all onto the page and it reads heavy. It reads like someone telling the story of his mental illness and nobody was understanding, let alone himself for the longest time.

Rian Johnson says Apple won’t let “bad guys” have iPhones on camera
Knives Out director Rian Johnson just gave a huge leg up to those of us who are terrible at solving mysteries in real time.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Transitioning a Friendship into Romance
The stakes are higher when you want to turn a friend into a lover. Here’s how to do it without destroying your relationship.

How Can I Stop Looking at My Phone When I Wake Up
Sure, I could meditate or exercise or journal… but I don’t want to.

How to deactivate your Twitter account
Hot tip: You don’t actually have to use Twitter.

 

February 23, 2020

Ben Affleck Tried to Drink Away the Pain. Now He’s Trying Honesty.
There is so much to unpack in this profile. The headline is not misleading, Affleck really does lay it all out there.

Legacy moment for Dosunmu in win over No. 9 Nittany Lions
He’s easily the best player Illinois has had since the days of Dee and Deron.

The Astros Cheating Scandal Has Only Gotten Nuttier
Just ban them all from baseball.

Apple considers allowing apps like Chrome and Gmail to be set as iOS defaults
This is a move that would make a lot of people extremely happy.

The Quest for the Best Amusement Park Is Ever-Changing and Never-Ending
I love amusement parks, but I haven’t been to one in ages.

Welcome to the Streaming Wars
Yes, all everyone wants is the ability to choose whatever show they want through a single service and at a price point that makes sense.

 

February 16, 2020

Macaulay Culkin Is Not Like You
I’m impressed with the fact that he’s just this guy. Yeah, he was in that movie you watch every Christmas, but he’s not one of those former child stars.

Pete Rose’s Plea to Be Unbanned From Baseball Is Right Out of the Trump Playbook
I don’t think there is a snowball’s chance in hell Pete Rose gets reinstated. However, I firmly believe he will enter into the Baseball Hall of Fame just as soon as he passes away. That’s probably cynical of me.

How to Do Disney Parks Solo
I’d never actually considered doing this, but I guess it could actually work.

The Batman – Camera Test 
Either the bat symbol is Joe Chill’s gun or it’s a batarang. The gun idea is from the comics. What stood out to me most was the music, which has an “Imperial March” vibe going on. Also, a kick bass drum! Wow.

 

February 9, 2020

How to Let Go of Your Regrets
This is the kind of essay that I really love. Mark Manson has incredible insight into things I simply have never examined.

Getting Away With It
These people spend millions to make these horrific actions go away. He said, “Does it hurt?” He should be locked away forever.

The Girl in the Huddle
Elinor Kaine Penna was a pioneer.

The Story of Huey Lewis Is Not a Tragedy
What a strange turn of events. I read this story twice before realizing Dave Holmes wrote it.

He Was ‘Star Wars’ ‘ Secret Weapon, So Why Was He Forgotten?
I’ve literally never heard of Ashley Boone Jr. before reading this story. What a fascinating and interesting life. It’s safe to say that without him, Star Wars might not have become the cultural touchstone it is today.

‘That play in our back pocket’: How Patrick Mahomes rallied the Chiefs to a Super Bowl win
Just a great write-up on the most important play of the game outside of the second to last touchdown.

Everything to Know About McMillion$ and the McDonald’s Monopoly Game Scam
Among all the things I want to watch, I’ve now added this doc.

La Gatarra Cat Lounge & Boutique Is A Completely Cat-Themed Catopia Of A Cafe In Arizona
It really is the cat’s meow.

Meet the woman who made Netflix get rid of its most annoying feature
Well, she did ask nicely.

The DC Comics Universe Is Ready for a Rebound
Only if it continues to have the right people in charge.

 

February 2, 2020

Ayo Dosunmu is here, and his time is now
Easily one of the best Illinois basketball players in a couple of decades, this kid is fun to watch, especially over this stretch of games. I hope he turns head when the NBA scouts come calling.

The Quarter-Devouring Economics of Arcades
I’ve often said the perfect business is a bar/arcade/indy record store/comic book shop. It seems I’m never actually going to see something like that in my lifetime. Still, the bar/arcade combo is finally seeing it’s day in the sun.

Pure Magic: The Oral History of Prince’s Super Bowl XLI Halftime Show
Personally, I think this 12-minutes might be one of the all-time greatest musical performances. That scream when he’s doing “Best of You” makes me tear up. And then the solo.

A Brief Overview of My Current Political Thoughts
John Scalzi echoing my thoughts.

9 things Americans need to learn from the rest of the world’s health care systems
Best thing I’ve read about universal health care.

Does electronic sign stealing work? The Astros’ numbers are eye-popping
This story is infuriating. The entire organization should be banned for life.

Burn through the witches and the calories with this ’80s aerobic video set to Rob Zombie
This made me laugh so hard.

 

January 26, 2020

Dead and spun: a story in three meetings
The inside story of the demise of Deadspin.

Why You Should Quit The News
Mark Manson at his best. This is a long one.

3 Strategies for Giving Up Bad Habits
The obstacle idea is a good one.

Illinois walks into Mackey Arena and out-toughs Purdue
This team has figured it out. I’m waiting patiently when The Athletic adds Illinois to it’s list of dedicated schools.

 

January 19, 2020

A Baseball Expert’s Guide to the Nutty MLB Cheating Scandal
”I am shocked to find gambling in this establishment!”

The College Football Championship Was All About the Crowd — and Trump
”In the end, as with everything else in 2020, it was all noise.”

Cooler on the Other Side: The Extraordinary Life and Legacy of Stuart Scott
I miss Stuart Scott.

‘The Mandalorian’ Is Bad and the Whole World Has Gone Mad
To quote Luke Skywalker, “Amazing. Every word of what you just said was wrong.”

Arnold Schwarzenegger Is Not Impressed
What a great interview. If he could run, he’d absolutely win the Presidency.

This clever R/C car leans and drifts like it weighs tons, not pounds
I’ve never seen anything like this and I work in the radio control industry.

My Personal Instagram “Lifehack”
Warren Ellis has a neat idea.

This Artist Uses Her Thighs to Paint Beautiful Ink Drawings
Well, that’s one way to get attention.

Why I’m still hopeful about America
I won’t be hopeful until we have a Democratic President, House and Senate.

 

January 12, 2020

Illini Basketball | Closing Time at Wisconsin
What a comeback win. Illinois beat Wisconsin in football and basketball by one point each game.

How the CIA, FBI and Secret Service come up with their code names
This stuff fascinates me.

John Mulaney is Not So Square
I really like these Q&A profiles in The New Yorker.

What Happens When You Don’t Own the Name That Made You Famous?
I do wish he’d just go by “The American Nightmare” Cody Rhodes. Pretty sure he can.

Neil Peart, Rush Drummer Who Set a New Standard for Rock Virtuosity, Dead at 67
I’m sad beyond compare. Simply one of the greatest drummers of all time. I should finish Ghost Rider.

Sleeping Beauty Proposal
Filmmaker Lee Loechler decided the best way to pop the question to his girlfriend, Sthuthi David, was to insert both of them into her favorite movie, Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. This is what the internet is made for.

 

January 5, 2020

Brandon Peters’ dive is an all-time great Illini play
This play… you have to love the heart, the toughness, the grit. I knew the spot wasn’t going to be good enough, but there’s no better play that showcases the fight in Fighting Illini

I Never Knew How Much I Needed a Star Wars TV Series Before The Mandalorian
Jon Favreau will be directing Star Wars movies soon.

Alone In A Crowded Milky Way
The Earth as “galactic archipelago.”

Who Really Killed Jimmy Hoffa?
I think it was the salmon.