How to diversify your workplace when you're stuck working at home

My friends John J. King and Ramona Rose King have spent their quarantine creating a new weekly web series called Home Office. Riffing on the confessional style of the original Office, each 5-ish-minute episode details the trials and tribulations of a newly married couple trying to learn how to turn their tiny apartment into a shared office space (While John and Ramona are both playing caricatures of themselves, I  personally feel it's a little too-close to my own life). Even the Boston Globe has celebrated its delightfulness.

In the episode above, the Kings tackle the very important topic of workplace diversity. Maybe their experience can help you bring some new perspectives to your own home office.

With Home Office, a Boston couple concocts a workplace comedy from their tiny apartment [Terry Byrne / The Boston Globe] Read the rest

More fun Trump-era parodies with "Ghost Donald in the Sky" and bonus tracks

In a fitting follow-up to Carla's post of "The Liar Tweets Tonight," I bring you the spooky parodic vision of "Ghost Donald in the Sky." The track is part of the Parody Project and was written and performed by Freedom Toast. The vocalist is an old and dear friend of mine, the immensely-talented jazz composer and multi-instrumentalist, Rick Harris.

Bonus Tracks:

Laurie Fox sent me this link to her friend Tom O'Connor's "Talkin' Trump Blues." The song was recorded live at the Tuba Czar show with Mark Beltzan on tuba and a surprise guest, Laurence Juber, on guitar (he of Wings and the Paul McCartney Band).

And, last but not least, is a pretty spot-on Nitzer Ebb parody.

Stay Inside Your Home (Nitzer Ebb parody) by Not-So Ebb

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Vsauce parody video

Finlay Hogan is a young Australian man who faked an American accent to make this Vsauce parody video last year. It's pretty funny and I feel certain Michael Stevens, Vsauce himself, would laugh.

Here's another one, from 2014, from a different guy. His name is Jack Douglass and his video has over 4M views:

Previously: Vsauce went to Peru to experience ayahuasca

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Luke Cage recut as the Family Matters title sequence

Luke Cage, the series chronicling a wrongfully-convicted ex-con with superpowers, is making waves with its timely commentary on political and cultural issues. It's so good it even works well recut as corny 90s sitcom Family Matters. Read the rest

An alternate ending to Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, by Cee Lo Green

Jimmy Stewart would never use this kind of language, so let's see what would happen if he did!

Banach-Tarski!: Fun with some very weird math

The Banach-Tarski paradox is one of the many places where higher-level math starts to sound like a stoned conversation in a Freshman college dorm room.

Imagine a ball. Now imagine cutting that ball up into a finite number of pieces. Six, maybe. Or five. The Banach-Tarski paradox proposes that you could take those pieces and, without stretching or expanding them in any way, use them to form two balls identical to the first. Basically, you've just created mass out of nothing. That is, to put it mildly, not supposed to be able to happen. Thus, the part about the paradox.

WTF, you may ask? It might help to know that Banach-Tarski isn't talking about real, physical balls. Rather, it deals with theoretical, mathematical spheres. Unlike a real ball, which only has so many atoms, a theoretical sphere can be divided up into an infinite number of pieces. Comparing different explanations of Banach-Tarski that I found online, the one that made the most sense to me stared off with this detail, and was written by "The Writer" a contributor to kuro5hin.org. He or she put together a layman's analogy that lowers the "WTF!!?" to a nice, calm, "wtf?"

So here's my proposed "intuitive" rationalization of it. I'll do it by way of an analogy with a physical sphere.

Let's forget for the moment the mathematical sphere S, which has infinite density. Let's consider a real, physical sphere B (for "ball"), also of radius 1. B is identical to S except that it consists of a finite (albeit large) number of atoms.

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