You might remember I switched up the format of my Non-fiction Book Club a bit, abandoning the timeline and just reading the book when I could. I actually really enjoyed this, as it felt less stressful and I was still able to leave my thoughts in the comment section and interact with others a little bit, even if it was drawn out over a long period of time. See my comments, and those of the others who read the book with me, here. (And feel free to read the book and add your thoughts at any time!)
We recently started listening to audiobooks, which has completely revolutionized the number of books I’m able to consume. Hello, why didn’t I think of this earlier? I’m just about done with the Hunger Games trilogy (I loved it, if you’re wondering.)
I’m trying to decide between three different titles for my next listen. Would you like to join me in reading one of them?
We all witness, in advertising and on supermarket shelves, the fierce competition for our food dollars. In this engrossing expose, Marion Nestle goes behind the scenes to reveal how the competition really works and how it affects our health. The abundance of food in the United States–enough calories to meet the needs of every man, woman, and child twice over–has a downside. Our overefficient food industry must do everything possible to persuade people to eat more–more food, more often, and in larger portions–no matter what it does to waistlines or well-being.
Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin?
Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup?
When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we’re making smart, rational choices. But are we?
In this newly revised and expanded edition of the groundbreaking New York Times bestseller, Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. From drinking coffee to losing weight, from buying a car to choosing a romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They’re systematic and predictable—making us predictably irrational.
Space is a world devoid of the things we need to live and thrive: air, gravity, hot showers, fresh produce, privacy, beer. Space exploration is in some ways an exploration of what it means to be human. How much can a person give up? How much weirdness can they take? What happens to you when you can’t walk for a year? have sex? smell flowers? What happens if you vomit in your helmet during a space walk? Is it possible for the human body to survive a bailout at 17,000 miles per hour? To answer these questions, space agencies set up all manner of quizzical and startlingly bizarre space simulations. As Mary Roach discovers, it’s possible to preview space without ever leaving Earth. From the space shuttle training toilet to a crash test of NASA’s new space capsule (cadaver filling in for astronaut), Roach takes us on a surreally entertaining trip into the science of life in space and space on Earth. [Mary Roach happens to be my favorite author ]