Four highly varied and interesting reads for your Sunday.
- The French government wants to tone my vagina. (Slate)
Shortly after my husband and I moved to Paris, I became pregnant, which was a relief, because I would get fat for a legitimate biological reason, not just because of all the pain au chocolat. When I gave birth to our daughter last November, my husband and I spent five government-sponsored days in the maternity ward at Clinique Leonardo Da Vinci, where we learned that French hospital meals come with a cheese course and that as part of my postpartum treatment I would be prescribed 10 to 20 sessions of la rééducation périnéale. This is a kind of physical therapy designed to retrain the muscles of the pelvic floor, including the vagina, and is one of the cornerstones of French postnatal care. Two months after our daughter was born, I summoned the courage to teach my vagina some new tricks.
- The accidental universe: Science's crisis of faith. (Harper's Magazine)
... two theories in physics, eternal inflation and string theory, now suggest that the same fundamental principles from which the laws of nature derive may lead to many different self-consistent universes, with many different properties. It is as if you walked into a shoe store, had your feet measured, and found that a size 5 would fit you, a size 8 would also fit, and a size 12 would fit equally well. Such wishy-washy results make theoretical physicists extremely unhappy. Evidently, the fundamental laws of nature do not pin down a single and unique universe. According to the current thinking of many physicists, we are living in one of a vast number of universes. We are living in an accidental universe. We are living in a universe uncalculable by science.
- Why is Kahlil Gibran's The Prophet so popular? (BBC)
Gibran on marriage: "Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup."
- Decadence and the IPL, by Mukul Kesavan. (ToI)
... is not just exasperating but decadent is that the people who run the IPL and the journalists who cover it, seem to positively celebrate the fact that IPL teams are playthings of the rich and famous. One could argue that Chelsea is a toy for Abramovitch, but no commentator, no television camera pays him any attention in the course of live action. Whereas Vijay Mallya and his son and Mukesh Ambani and his family are as much a part of the IPL's action as Chris Gayle or Sachin Tendulkar. When purse-strings become visible in and around the field of play, you know that a sport is in trouble because it isn't lit only by its own brilliance, it's now also lit by the reflected glare of money.
|Source: The Economic Times|