A Water Landing? You've Got to Be Kidding

Back in 2006, I blogged about a bunch of nonsense that they do on commercial airline flights, including the idiocy of schooling passengers on what to do in the “unlikely event of a water landing.” My friend Peter Thompson‘s research found that there had been more than 150 million commercial flights since 1970 without a […]

Is Voting Dangerous for Your Health?

Photo: psd A couple years ago, we wrote a column called “Why Vote?” It didn’t advocate for people to not vote; it just argued that, because of the way the world works, there’s very little value in a single person’s voting. But according to Donald Redelmeier, a professor of medicine at the University of Toronto, […]

Two Cars Come Within One Minute of Crashing Into Each Other

You will never see a newspaper headline that reads: “Two Cars Come Within One Minute of Crashing Into Each Other” In a car, you are constantly within a minute (actually seconds) of crashing into another vehicle if some sort of evasive action, like braking or switching lanes, is not taken. So why should it be […]

FREAK Shots: Blame It on the Moon

Who (or what) should you blame if you get hit by a car? Costa Rica’s traffic police fault “imprudent” pedestrians (who ignore traffic signals and don’t use overhead passes) for the country’s 33 pedestrian deaths this year. Researchers at the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute say you can blame the moon — at least […]

The Art of Exploiting a Tragedy

Forgive me for bringing up the TV show Mad Men again but — well, I do love it. I blogged recently about a book of Frank O’Hara‘s poetry that appeared on the show and then had an Amazon sales spike. In this week’s episode, there’s a terrible crash of an American Airlines plane and one […]

It Is An Eagle You Want On The Golf Course, Not A Hawk

Professional golfer Tripp Isenhour is learning this subtle distinction the hard way.