Author Archives: dhaysom

The Heart and the Mind

The mind-bending effects of feeling two hearts Every second or so, Carlos would feel a small “bump” hitting his tummy. It was the beating of his “second heart”. The small mechanical pump was meant to relieve the burden of his failing cardiac muscles, but Carlos (not his real name) disliked the sensation. The beat of […]

The Serial Podcast: Justice and Storytelling

Serial has quickly become the internet’s most popular podcast. Its narrator, Sarah Koenig, is investigating the case of Adnan Sayed, who is in prison for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee, in 1999. Is he innocent, or guilty? The series oozes suspense, and each weekly episode is now awaited with a degree of […]

Paying for the past

Caribbean nations prepare demand for slavery reparations Heads of state of 15 Caribbean nations will gather in St Vincent on Monday to unveil a plan demanding reparations from Europe for the enduring suffering inflicted by the Atlantic slave trade. In an interview with the Guardian, Sir Hilary Beckles, who chairs the reparations task force charged with framing […]

Hearing Colours

How synaesthesia inspires artists The experience of colour as we usually understand it is a visual one: objects have colour, artists use colour, and we can recall a colour in our mind’s eye. But for some people, colour is a more multi-sensory affair, linked to sound, texture, taste or shapes. Music has a hue – […]

The meaning of poop

The Oral History of the Poop Emoji link Kat: In Japanese that’s called “unchi.” It’s a child word with a benign meaning. Once we bring  outside of the Japanese community, we have all of these acquired meanings, so you’ve got a problem. Well, this is insulting. Of course somebody will say, Did the Unicode Consortium sink this […]

The world’s hardest exam?

The Knowledge, London’s Legendary Taxi-Driver Test, Puts Up a Fight in the Age of GPS T Magazine (New York Times) [VPN needed] | PDF – Jody Rosen, November 10th 2014 The examination to become a London cabby is possibly the most difficult test in the world — demanding years of study to memorize the labyrinthine city’s […]

Why not make an exhibition of fake artwork?

Why do we only worship “real” art? – Polly Toynbee, The Guardian 13.11.2014 What’s wrong with modern perfect reproductions of the world’s greatest art that we could display in any gallery, virtually identical to the original? You can feel the frisson of shock at such iconoclasm, undermining the religion of art and the art market. […]

Should drinking while pregnant be a crime?

Our addiction to criminalising human behaviour makes a mockery of private responsibility – Simon Jenkins, The Guardian 6.11.2014 In America hundreds of (mostly black) mothers are now jailed for this offence, to whose benefit it is unclear. In the British case the mother is not charged with any crime, but it is argued that a […]