What We’re Reading

RONNY HARTMANN/AFP/Getty Images Preeti Aroon “Gebrselassie supplants own marathon mark, going under 2.04:00,” by the Associated Press. While Americans were distracted by the financial bailout plan yesterday, something amazing happened. Ethiopian runner Haile Gebrselassie broke the marathon world record that he himself had set last year. He ran the marathon distance of 26.2 miles (42.2 ...

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592308_080929_gabrselaisse5.jpg

RONNY HARTMANN/AFP/Getty Images

Preeti Aroon

"Gebrselassie supplants own marathon mark, going under 2.04:00," by the Associated Press. While Americans were distracted by the financial bailout plan yesterday, something amazing happened. Ethiopian runner Haile Gebrselassie broke the marathon world record that he himself had set last year. He ran the marathon distance of 26.2 miles (42.2 km) in 2 hours, 3 minutes, and 59 seconds!

RONNY HARTMANN/AFP/Getty Images

Preeti Aroon

Gebrselassie supplants own marathon mark, going under 2.04:00,” by the Associated Press. While Americans were distracted by the financial bailout plan yesterday, something amazing happened. Ethiopian runner Haile Gebrselassie broke the marathon world record that he himself had set last year. He ran the marathon distance of 26.2 miles (42.2 km) in 2 hours, 3 minutes, and 59 seconds!

Elizabeth Dickinson

Reading Junot Diaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is like getting on an amusement park ride designed for travel-thirsty adults. Get ready for an education in Domican Republic history from its politics to its folklore. Emotions ride high in this funky and fashionable novel that offers great cultural insight into the Dominican diaspora and the United States, where so many of its people have landed.

Rebecca Frankel

Benjamin Franklin: City Slicker,” by Jerry Weinberger offers quite a few delicious anecdotes about “the first American” and his love of city life abroad. But there’s far more than cheeky details about his hobnobbing savvy and appetite for socialite dames — indeed, the author calls him “sexy.” In addition to discovering that Franklin preferred the urban scape to America’s rural terrain, there are relevant examples to be absorbed particulary in terms of Franklin’s diplomatic finesse, his penchant for city planning, and his ability to rally the public when it would otherwise be divided.  

Blake Hounshell

The risk of a total systemic meltdown is now as high as ever,” by Nouriel Roubini. Any blog post that leads off with the words, “Let me explain now in more detail why we are now back to the risk of a total systemic financial meltdown” is probably worth reading.

Joshua Keating

“Playing With Gunfire” by Brian Howe in Paste. At the same time war-themed video games are becoming more realistic, actual warfare is becoming more “virtual.” Howe talks to game designers and military personnel to explore the moral gray area where the two meet.

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