Richard Jackson

Long Reads: Online churches, Tel Aviv bus station, the “good” war and shoe modelling

Rich Jackson’s Weekly Long Reads: 18 hours in Tel Aviv’s bus station, online churches, the myth of the “good” war and PB’s Editor’s choice – being a shoe model…

 

The myth of the good war – Geoffrey Wheatcroft (The Guardian)

 

This article takes apart this concept that has built up in collective imagination of western societies surrounding the first world war being the bad war and the second world war being the good war, one fought for noble intentions. As Wheatcroft says:

“The notion that the second world war was finer and nobler than the first is highly dubious in itself, since it sanitises so much, from the slaughter of civilians by Allied bombing to the gang rape of millions of women by our Russian allies at the moment of victory.”

 

Inside the Universal Life Church, the Internet’s one true religion – Aaron Sankin (The Kernel)

This is one of those online churches where anyone can be ordained as a minister. You don’t need a denomination or even religious belief; you just sign a document, pay a registration fee and then “bam!” – you’re wearing a linen shirt on a beach officiating your friend’s wedding. The article examines the history and philosophy behind the numerous branches and offshoots of this modern religion, discussing the debate behind the ethos or raison d’etre of online churches: are they real or a racket? Personally I’m just happy if it makes weddings more lively. At a park in Sydney two weeks ago, I cracked open a beer and watched some circus entertainers/hipsters celebrate a wedding; they closed the ceremony by throwing pies at each other, then covered in whipped cream, the bride and groom kissed. Best wedding episode ever.

 

I spent 18 hours in Tel Aviv’s bus station – Naomi Zeveloff (Forward.com)

A great people-watching story. The author heads to the Tel Aviv bus station, a concrete coliseum of poky little restaurants and cafes, a plethora of shops and services that flog a strange selection of items including, “dog toys in the likeness of former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or assassinated Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi.” In total, she spends 18 hours watching the comings and goings of people including religious folks, Israeli soldiers, tourists and members of the general public, and explores the sprawling station which is seen as the “most reviled place in the country, seen by most Israelis as a hub of prostitution and crime in Neve Sha’anan, a working class south Tel Aviv neighbourhood.”

 

EDITOR’S CHOICE

Secret life of a shoe model – Liz Weber (Narrative.ly)

For creatives out there like me who have worked all manner of other jobs to support their creative pursuits, this article will resonate pretty darn well! It might also provide a little inspiration about how to make some extra bucks for those of us who have been told “You have a great face…for radio…” Yeah thanks for that…

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