September Reads

I've been traveling this month, and haven't done much reading. I did read Murakami's What I Talk About When I Talk About Running though, and I was surprised to learn that he started as a writer pretty late (and on a whim). He also ran 23+ marathons.

I started listening to podcasts instead of music when I cook, and I immediately found two favorite episodes from This American Life:

  • The Giant Pool of Money explains the 2007-2008 financial crisis through the voices of several people who were involved in some capacity or another. I didn't really have a big-picture understanding of what happened until I listened to this episode.

  • 129 Cars offers a glimpse at the inner workings of a car dealership, where things get way more dramatic than I anticipated. Who knew they sometimes sold new cars at a loss, just to meet their sales quota.

Also, time capsules! There is something fascinating about sending messages into the future. Especially if that future is so distant that you can't count on current languages and measurements units to still be around. The Westinghouse time capsules buried in New York are supposed to be opened in 6939. The KEO satellite (not yet launched) is supposed to carry messages to people 50,000 years from now. And the LAGEOS plaque has an even longer timespan: 8.4 million years before the satellite carrying it re-enters the atmosphere.