1. 36 Hours on the Fake Campaign Trail with Donald Trump — BuzzFeed
Over the course of 25 years, he’s repeatedly toyed with the idea of running for president and now, maybe, governor of New York. With all but his closest apostles finally tired of the charade, even the Donald himself has to ask, what’s the point? On the plane and by the pool with the man who will not be king. Read it at BuzzFeed.
2. Black Sea Bullies? — Sports Illustrated
As men’s hockey competition commences in Sochi, Michael Farber discusses the tremendous importance of a victory to Russia: “Viewed through the prism of the host nation, the Olympics are a hockey tournament; everything else is basically Lycra and sequins.” Read it at Sports Illustrated.
3. Who Killed Gonzalo Ramirez? — Slate
Nearly 20 years ago, a college student named Patricia Esparza was allegedly raped. A few weeks later, her attacker was found tortured and murdered. Now, she’s been charged in connection with his death and faces life in prison. How much responsibility should a victim have? Read it at Slate.
4. How Colleges Flunk Mental Health — Newsweek
Katie J.M. Baker reports: “Despite that very clearly stated law, dozens of current or recent students at colleges and universities across the country — large and small, private and public — told Newsweek they were punished for seeking help: kicked out of campus housing with nowhere else to go, abruptly forced to withdraw from school and even involuntarily committed to psychiatric wards.” Read it at Newsweek.
5. Cheap Words — New Yorker
In this lengthy but worthwhile piece, George Packer examines the complicated (and mostly hostile) relationship between Amazon and book publishers. “Amazon’s shape-shifting, engulfing quality, its tentacles extending in all directions, makes it unusual even in the tech industry, where rapid growth, not profitability, is the measure of success.” Read it at the New Yorker.
6. High Times at the YOLO Estate — Rolling Stone
Jonah Weiner hangs out poolside at Drake’s lavish mansion and discusses how a half-Jewish, half-black kid from Toronto became a Grammy-winning hip-hop star. “A running theme when Drake discusses himself is that if he dreams about doing something, it’s only a matter of time till he gets it done.” Read it at Rolling Stone.
7. Out Route — ESPN The Magazine
Seth Wickersham shadows Tony Gonzalez for his final NFL season — one he’d come out of near-retirement to play. As Atlanta’s disappointing year becomes apparent, Gonzalez is faced to accept not only life without football, but without that championship ring. Read it at ESPN The Magazine.
8. California’s Thirsty Almonds — East Bay Express
The Golden State produces 80% of the world’s almonds. As the water-strapped state faces an historic drought, Central Valley farmers are championing an elaborate and expensive plan involving giant tunnels to continue to irrigate their groves. But at what fiscal — and environmental — price? Read it at East Bay Express.
9. Why Woody Allen May Be The Real Brainwasher — BuzzFeed
While many worthwhile pieces have been written recently about Woody Allen’s alleged abuse of Dylan Farrow, we reposted this analysis by Lili Loofbourow, originally published on her blog. She argues that a close reading of Allen’s own statements reveal his manipulative nature. Read it at BuzzFeed.