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As per the new world order, this was a real whack-a-mole news week. Frankly, it defied any sort of narrative arc for me, so here’s just a bunch of stuff I thought was interesting. I know, I know! I promise to pull a tiny thread of order out of chaos next week.
Uber continued its battle royale against cigarettes as Thing You Indulge In When Drunk That Makes You Feel Worst About Yourself. We heard about one woman’s horrific year working at the company; Italian taxi drivers clashed with police during a strike to protest Uber’s incursions in the country (they’ve since ended the strike); and it was reported that their employees are asked to subscribe to “always be hustlin’” as a “core company value,” which—say what you will about entrenched taxi monopolies and consumer choice—would take anyone out of the running for the “you’re cool” exception. As in all things, France and Germany remain our last line of defense, and there’s no guarantee the center will hold.
Over in the U.S., where we are, unbelievably, having a national conversation about Nazis, this week marked the 75th anniversary of President Franklin D. Roosevelt signing executive order 9066, allowing the internment of tens of thousands of Japanese Americans. Here’s how different photographers captured the internment camps at the time. And here’s an interesting look at a largely forgotten U.S. internment program in the Aleutian Islands.
Protesters at Standing Rock burned down structures in the camp as part of a leaving ceremony ahead of a deadline to clear off federal land. Here’s a video of the smoldering ruins of the protest site. Speaking of smoldering ruins, in case you were wondering how the U.S. media is feeling these days, the Washington Post has officially changed its slogan to the name of my high school emo band. Does this mean I get to start wearing fatigues and black lipstick again? Ah, the salad days, before crushing melancholy was coopted by The Man.
And in serious news: we have a multimedia series on the students targeted by Nigeria’s brutal Boko Haram, which I highly recommend exploring in full. The famine in South Sudan is a foreseeable and avoidable nightmare; there are ways to donate here. The bloody return of Pakistan’s Taliban. And Syrian peace talks have restarted, but Assad is in the driver’s seat.
In very not serious news: a cheap bar-restaurant in France, which has four waiters and sells homemade beef bourguignon for 13 bucks, was accidentally awarded a Michelin star, and seriously, someone better be optioning this story for a movie right now. Here’s my favorite bit:
[Owner Veronique] Jacquet’s cook Penelope Salmon, asked whether she ever dreamed of earning a Michelin star, said: “No, not at all. I cook with my heart.”
Let’s throw axes in Canada! Let’s never go camping with this guy. Want to know how a Chinese restaurant kitchen works? H/T to The Browser for that one, and if you ever want to go deep on some off-the-beaten-path British media, treat yourself to a subscription. An eerie report from Henry Ford’s ruined Fantasyland in the Brazilian Amazon. China’s race for artificial intelligence. They’ll need it to lead the new world order, not that I understand why anyone would want to. Cressida Dick will be the first woman to lead London’s Scotland Yard, but the real news out of the U.K. is this cake/cookie debate, which is the most British thing you’ll read this week.
And finally, astronomers found seven Earth-sized planets around a nearby star that could have conditions right for life so I don’t know about you guys but my bags are packed. I highly recommend watching the video. ALSO, and dare I say, MOST IMPORTANTLY, the star around which the planets orbit, TRAPPIST-1, was named after the telescope that first discovered it, which was in turn named after the Belgian religious order famous for brewing the world’s best beers. We made a potentially revolutionary scientific discovery and named it after a beer we like! Welcome to Earth, motherfuckers.
That’s it for this time! See you next week for more of the best in the best of food, politics, and travel from around the web. Tweet me stories you want to see @caraparks.