"5 COOL THINGS" - weekly emails

5 Cool Things  😎
5 Cool Things:
Hi, this is Greg Powell. I hope you'll enjoy one or more of these interesting topics from the world of business and beyond. Dan Powell, my son and collaborator, has researched the articles and written the summaries, so this is not a boilerplate message. We'd like to give you a weekly break to learn about something cool or, better yet, 5 Cool Things.


The Truth About the US’ Most Iconic Food (BBC)

Nothing says Independence Day like hot dogs on the grill. Today a symbol of a shared American identity, the hot dog was first sold on the boardwalk at Coney Island in New York City. Naturally, the originator of this all-American food was an immigrant: German-born Charles L Feltman, who sold his “red hots” in a cart specially modified with a charcoal cooker. The elongated treats were easy to eat on the beach, and a summer tradition was born. When Feltman’s business closed in 1954, rival hot dog maker Nathan’s rose to prominence as the end-all Coney Island destination, boasting “world famous frankfurters since 1916.” Read more…


The Day the Music Burned (The New York Times Magazine)

On June 1, 2008, a massive fire engulfed multiple buildings in the Universal Studios backlot in Hollywood, California. “We had no loss,” Universal’s spokesperson told the media. That was a lie. This is the story of how Universal’s vast “vault,” containing hundreds of thousands of priceless and irreplacable master recordings from artists like Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, Louis Armstrong, Aretha Franklin, The Eagles, Steely Dan, Aerosmith, Nirvana, Eminem, and many more went up in smoke — and how the secret was kept for over a decade. “Recorded music is arguably America’s great artistic patrimony, our supreme gift to world culture. How should it be safeguarded? And by whom?” Read more…


A Whopping 91% of Plastic Isn't Recycled (National Geographic)

Think back on all of the plastic containers you’ve thrown in the recycling bin over the years. They were getting melted down to reuse for new products — right? Nope! Since 2012, the United States has recycled just 9% of its plastic, compared with 30% in Europe and 25% in China. Production of items like water bottles, takeout containers, and cleaning products over the past 60 years has totaled 8.3 billion metric tons, of which the vast majority has been simply thrown into landfills. In other words, that soda bottle from last Tuesday, used just one time, will be around for many hundreds of years. “We as a society need to consider whether it’s worth trading off some convenience for a clean, healthy environment.” Read more…


Eerie Facts About Point Nemo, The Most Remote Location On Planet Earth (All That’s Interesting)

In the southern Pacific Ocean off the western coast of Chile lies the most remote place on Earth, a place where the nearest human being is likely to be in outer space — flying overhead in the International Space Station. Point Nemo was discovered in 1992 by surveyor Hrvoje Lukatela, who used an algorithm to determine the point farthest from any land mass. So what’s the use of such a faraway place? NASA and other space-faring organizations have steered de-orbiting satellites toward Point Nemo for years, making it a de-facto spacecraft graveyard. Read more…


The Definitive Study on How to Make Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs (Slate)

For something so mundane as hard-boiling an egg, there are a ton of methods out there to choose from. Do you simply throw them into boiling water? Start them off cold? Steam them? Or bake them in the oven? Fortunately, the writer of this article has done the legwork (eggwork?), cooking dozens of eggs in an exhaustive search for the best possible method. Read more…

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See you next week!
            - Greg
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