_ghost marriage

Weekly round-up: Bitcoins, brains, brides (dead), De Botton… and Lil Wayne

“Less affluent families who desire ghost marriages may use a non-human proxy for the corpse bride, such as a silver statuette or a doughy human-shaped biscuit with black beans for eyes. Some may buy an old, rotten corpse at a discounted price, dress it in clothing and reinforce its skeleton with steel wire.”

The crazy, creepy ritual of ghost marriages, which saw four men recently arrested for serving the market through less-than-legal means.

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“When a word is missing but you ‘think you know it,’ what is probably happening is that a lot of information about that word has been reconstructed in working memory, but not enough to trigger the production of the word itself.”

A great answer on Quora by super-user Paul King about ‘What happens in my brain when I can’t recall something I know?

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Bitcoin has been everywhere lately owing to volatility in the new, online currency.

Here’s a great piece from the New Yorker that explains the current situation. Here’s a great video to give you a quick introduction to Bitcoin. And here’s an older but fantastic hour-long story from This American Life about how currencies are born and used (recommended even if you don’t care about Bitcoin).

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“Modern psychotherapists’ understanding of how humans work and what they need to cope with existence is, in my eyes, immensely more sophisticated than that of priests. Nevertheless, religions have been expert at creating a proper role for the priest, as a person to talk to at all important moments of life, without this seeming like a slightly unhinged minority thing to do.”

Alain De Botton on why psychotherapists should be organised like the priesthood.

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“In spite of near-universal agreement that sex is fun and feels nice, the backseating of women’s sexual pleasure is still a stubborn stain on our cultural fabric, and we can’t seem to get past the idea that sex is really for men.”

… until Lil Wayne comes along, that is. Is Lil Wayne the most feminist rapper? If consideration for the needs of his female sexual partners is any measure, then yes. (Swearing and sexual themes included).