Conversation Piece, May 27, 2018

A weekly series.

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Enjoy our Sunday series, Conversation Piece, a NUVO–curated digest of things on the Internet we think you’ll want to talk about.

Bonkers. For Atlas Obscura, Dan Nosowitz reflects on how the way that we talk about mental health has (or, more accurately, has not) changed over the years—focusing on the remarkable consistency of food terminology (bananas, crackers, nuts) invoked as shorthand for being mentally unwell. Why are these foodstuffs synonymous with “crazy”? Delve into the (often insensitive) justifications for these terms, here.

Marital bliss. Diamond rings, a flashy venue, over-the-top floral arrangements—weddings are no small affair. And who really needs them anyway? According to a survey by the Angus Reid Institute, a majority of Canadians now believe “marriage is simply not necessary”. But while the hefty price tag of a wedding may be a deterrent for many long-term couples, as Macleans reports, there is evidence that marriage is actually a powerful poverty fighter. Not only that, but it is also a surprisingly accurate predictor of success, stability, and happiness. Read more, here.

Ocean dive. In a great bit of multimedia journalism, National Geographic brings you to Henderson Island—a tiny spot of land in the Pacific Ocean estimated to have the highest concentration of debris—mostly plastic garbage—of anywhere in the world. The features explores where plastic comes from, how it travels through the ocean, and what it does to marine life. See more, here.

Iron chef. Too many cooks in the kitchen? Not at Spyce, a new fast-food joint in Boston that’s being billed as the “world’s first” robotic kitchen. In lieu of line cooks, you’ll find a series of mechanical woks that are able to prepare rice bowls, curries, salads, stir-frys, and pasta in less than three minutes. Developed by four MIT students and backed by Michelin-starred chef Daniel Boulud, the restaurant has so far been met with positive reviews, offering an intriguing glimpse into what the future of food could look like. Read more, here.

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May 27, 2018