Past Newsletter Stories

Dec 06 2017

‘Their Spirits Were Trapped in Those Masks’

No one wants these faces of Native American POWs—not the Smithsonian, not Harvard—because of how they were made.

Nov 29 2017

The Mesmerizing World of Homemade Weapons

Get in the proverbial ring for Death Matches, where people compete with some of the most insane (and creative) weapons imaginable.

Nov 22 2017

Holiday Food Through History, Explained

Holiday food has always been special but how did we get our specific ideas about eating turkey at Thanksgiving or ham at Christmas?

Nov 16 2017

What Happened to Putin’s Face?

Vladimir Putin and the growing field of male plastic surgery.

Nov 08 2017

The Twisting History of Blood on Film

The surprisingly fascinating question of what, exactly, is movie blood.

Oct 18 2017

The True Crime Story Behind a 1970 Cult Feminist Film Classic

The only film that Barbara Loden ever made, Wanda, is now considered to be a masterpiece. Here is the true story behind the fiction.

Oct 04 2017

The Story Behind the Chicago Newspaper That Bought a Bar

The oral history of how a determined Chicago reporter convinced her boss to do something that hadn’t been done before—to create a fake business with a real location.

Sep 28 2017

An Extremely Close Reading of Pop Song Duets

Ever listen to a song and think, does that even make sense? We took a magnifying glass to some of the world’s most popular he-said-she-said duets.

Sep 21 2017

Panic at Penn Station

This past spring, a panicked crowd streamed out of Penn Station because of a terrorist threat. Except there was no terrorist.

Sep 13 2017

There’s No Such Thing as a Free Watch

An artist goes deep, in all directions, on the where, what, when, how and why of a free watch.