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1998 / September | View All Issues |

September 1998

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The neophyte·

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Letters

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Punch and Judy·

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Harper’s Index

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The science of apartheid·

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When he’s not killing students . . .·

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The seven vials·

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The gallbladder will set you free·

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The solitary death of Jim McDougal·

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Partisan politics·

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Scenes from a deposition

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Melts down in your mouth·

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Don’t drink, don’t smoke, what do you do?·

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A country worth defending·

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Me and Jim by the dashboard light·

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And the Oscar goes to . . .·

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The American sublime·

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Thread·

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Liberating a pillar of tortillas·

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A skeptic searches for an American faith

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A civilization made of flowers, light, and wax

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Software that thinks it knows you

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"We all know in France that as soon as a politician starts saying that some problem will be solved at the European level, that means no one is going to do anything."
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Freddie Gray’s relatives arrived for the trial in the afternoon, after the prep-school kids had left. By their dress, they seemed to have just gotten off work in the medical and clerical fields. The family did not appear at ease in the courtroom. They winced and dropped their heads as William Porter and his fellow officer Zachary Novak testified to opening the doors of their police van last April and finding Freddie paralyzed, unresponsive, with mucus pooling at his mouth and nose. Four women and one man mournfully listened as the officers described needing to get gloves before they could touch him.

The first of six Baltimore police officers to be brought before the court for their treatment of Freddie Gray, a black twenty-five-year-old whose death in their custody was the immediate cause of the city’s uprising last spring, William Porter is young, black, and on trial. Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing.

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"Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing."
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Average speed of Heinz ketchup, from the mouth of an upended bottle, in miles per year:

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After studying the fall of 64,000 individual raindrops, scientists found that some small raindrops fall faster than they ought to.

The Playboy mansion in California was bought by the heir to the Twinkie fortune, and a New Mexico man set fire to his apartment to protest his neighbors’ loud lovemaking.

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Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'

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