Christmas is just about upon us, and whether or not you observe, we hope your coming week is full of good cheer. Here are some good reads for cozying up next to the fireplace.
This week we learned about a $22 million program in the Pentagon that investigates UFOs. While we here at Slate can’t confirm the existence of aliens, we can confirm that this news got conspiracy theorists in the bizarro corners of the internet spinning in high gear. Jacob Brogan also argued we shouldn’t spend money searching for aliens, but rather, hiding from them.
One silver lining to the months-long sexual harassment reckoning has been the writing and reporting covering it. We collected some of the best stories we read. And we took two looks back: at the long cultural history of jokes about workplace harassment and at the now obvious workplace harassment in Love, Actually.
Some good ways to start your Christmas celebration: Watch the latest episode of Who’s Afraid of Aymann Ismail?, in which Aymann goes out to buy his first-ever Christmas tree. Listen to Chance the Rapper and Jeremih’s latest batch of original Christmas jams. Read five tips from happiness experts on how to have a more pleasant holiday. Observe the actual holiday going on this month: Toyotathon!
The end of the year means TV Club is back! Willa Paskin has assembled her motley crew of fellow TV critics—Tara Ariano, Todd VanDerWerff, and Slate’s own June Thomas—to look back at the year that was on the small screen (and other streaming devices). The four contemplate how politics infiltrated television, why Seth Meyers is the king of late night, what Fox News viewers watch when they’re not watching Fox News, the best shows to watch in your PJs, and more. Follow the entire series here.
Not from Slate
- A New York Times investigation into ongoing abuse at Ford factories reveals how difficult it can be to change a culture of harassment.
- Politico’s Jack Shafer writes a eulogy for the quickly disappearing alt-weekly newspaper.
- U.S. cities have been giving homeless people free bus tickets to relocate for three decades. The Guardian tracked a few individuals to see where they ended up.
- This ranking of the numbered Final Fantasy games started a passionate debate in Slate’s gamer Slack channel.
Your Screen Time is Over
Hey kids, it’s time to turn off the TV! Slate just wrapped up our pop-up blog Screen Time, which explored the art, business, and technology of children’s television. In it, we asked some tough questions: Can I raise screen-free kids without becoming That Mom? Why is every mayor on kids’ TV an incompetent buffoon? And why can’t I stream Muppet Babies?!
We also surveyed more than 500 parents about how they handle screen time in their households, and we looked into the rise of creepy “happy families” who cash in on YouTube. So hang up your jacket, put on a cardigan, and catch up on all the stories here.
Thank you for your Slate Plus membership, which makes our journalism possible. Have a wonderful holiday!
Associate editor, Slate Plus
P.S. Ben Tausig, editor of Slate’s house crossword, the American Values Club, writes: “The American Values Club has a holiday deal on annual subscriptions: $17 for one year, or $32 for two. A subscription buys the full experience, which includes an app-compatible version, a lovely printable version, and bonus puzzles throughout year, all in your inbox weekly. An AVCX subscription is an elegant gift for a loved one, or for someone who you hope will love you more. One might even call it the ‘solution’ to the ‘puzzle’ of holiday gifts, if one were a copywriter for baseball radio advertisements, or a dad.”