Outside Reading — Walleye Be edition

Friday night fish frys define Wisconsin. What happens when climate change adjusts the menu? by John McCracken

I feel residentially obligated to share this article, one of an increasing number that strives to take the effects of climate change out of the enormously abstract and get down to how the fundamentals of day-to-day living are likely to be radically different moving forward. In Wisconsin, there is perhaps no shared experience in the statewide culture more likely to stir fear into the populace by reporting it to be under threat than the Friday night fish fry. I’m half convinced that if this article got in front of enough Dairyland eyes, the whole dang state would go solar by the following weekend. This piece, meticulously reported and sharply written by John McCracken, is published by Grist.

What The Internet Is Hiding by Farhad Manjoo

A few years ago, when I was writing and editing a publication covering the health care industry, I posted a story on our website about a New York surgeon who had taken some sort of prestige post with a charitable twist. Not long after, a representative the for the surgeon called and asked if there was any way to juice up the search engine optimization on the article. The surgeon was disappointed the piece was appearing higher in Google search results, and I eventually sussed out that the whole goal of taking the prestige post and hiring the representation to stump for him was to drive some unsavory news stories about his questionable business practice a few pages back on Google. I thought of that situation the whole time I read Farhad Manjoo’s editorial page piece about the way recency bias in search engine algorithms is skewing our shared perception of public figures. This article is published by The New York Times.

The Baseball 100 (2021) by Joe Posnanski

As I ruefully acknowledged a couple weeks ago, my longtime love of baseball, particularly major league baseball, has dissipated so thoroughly that it’s nearly vanished altogether. I now add the disclaimer that the sizable shift in my affections is reserved for the modern iteration of the game. I remain enthralled by the history and the lore, and I’ve rarely encountered a book that captures the specialness of America’s Pastime better than Joe Posnanski’s massive tome The Baseball 100. Largely shared first on the online publication The Athletic, Posnanski’s project aims to document a respectably accurate tally (on a few occasions in the book, Posnanski takes pains to note that he doesn’t see his list as definitive as much as a useful, engaging exercise) of the one hundred greatest players in the history of the game. Each entry includes a biographical sketch of the player, a recounting of their most telling statistics and on-field accomplishments, and just the right dose of personal reflection. The book is majestic and a delight to read.

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