Five Friday Reads


  • Inside a Chinese Test-Prep Factory‘ from The New York Times. If you, like me, are still scarred by mind-numbing SAT test prep, your mouth will drop as you read what Chinese teens must endure to prepare for the gaokao, the singular metric for entrance into Chinese universities.
  • Desert Bloom: Masdar City‘ in The Forecast 2014. A highly sustainable city built in the middle of the desert? No, this isn’t science fiction, this is what’s happening right now in the United Arab Emirates.
  • “Battling” Up a Sheet Yosemite Face, Seizing a Dream, Not a Rope‘ from The New York Times. As an avid reader of mountain climbing and adventure books, I was enthralled to read about this duo of mountain climbers who are attempting to climb a near-impossibly flat route up El Capitan in Yosemite.
  • Stormy Weather‘ from The Antarctic Sun. It’s been cold in New York this week. But you know where it’s colder? Antarctica. This video of a condition 1 (the worst) storm will make you feel lucky for our comparatively blustery weather.
  • Digging into Chicken Fried Steak‘ from Serious Eats. Do you have any idea what chicken fried steak is? This article explains the tricky history of the iconic Texan dish (and why there’s no chicken in it.)

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