News

Link Roundup: What Can Be Stolen & What Can’t; Women in Tech

“So far, no company has found a solution for retaining women.”

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How Much Would You Pay For Mermaid School?

The website offers lots of options, including fitness classes for people aged 16 and up, though it cautions that “Introduction to Mermaid Swimming” is a pre-req and also that “students must know how to swim.”

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Best Possible Use of a Vacant Lot?

What’s the best possible use of a vacant lot? Besides a tiny house, of course. A vertical farm!

Now, this is not an obvious answer, especially not in Jackson, Wyoming, where tourists swoop in and out like birds and a vacant lot can go for $1 million. But it is a potentially exciting one.

the town is about to become home to one of the only vertical farms in the world. On a thin slice of vacant land next to a parking lot, a startup called Vertical Harvest recently broke ground on a new three-story stack of greenhouses that will be filled with crops like microgreens and tomatoes. 

“We’re replacing food that was being grown in Mexico or California and shipped in,” explains Penny McBride, one of the co-founders. “We feel like the community’s really ready for a project like this. Everybody’s so much more aware of the need to reduce transportation, and people like to know their farmer and where food’s coming from.”

The small plot of land is owned by the town, and the building that houses the farm will be owned by the town as well, as part of a partnership. The founders spent five years working with the city to fully vet the idea—from how well the business model can support itself to how the efficient the new building will be.

Even better: 

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Relive ‘The Billfold Live’

For those of you who missed it: Here’s audio of the live event we hosted on Jan. 28. featuring stories from Anne Helen Petersen, Jazmine Hughes, Jason Diamond, Jia Tolentino, Helaine Olen, Logan Sachon, Christiana Cole, and the Billfold Staff.

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On Life Expectancy; Also, William Giraldi and Kanye West Agree

In the poorest regions of the world, where people make, on average, $500 a year, per capita, there is no country where people’s average life expectancy is higher than 64. Whereas in the richest regions, where people make, on average, $50,000 a year, per capita, there is no country where average life expectancy is lower than 74.

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Reminder: Billfold Live Event Tomorrow, Jan. 28

Unfortunately, they don’t have Wi-Fi so we won’t be able to stream it, but we’re going to try to record the audio so you can listen later if you’re unable to come to the event.

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Hot Takes For A Snow Day: “Idle Hands Spend Money,” Sandra Day O’Connor, Jennifer Senior, & More

+ Do you like shopping online? Lots of people do! As my mom put it to me this weekend, “Idle hands spend money.” The best one can do sometimes is spend wisely. In that vein, Racked was super excited to report — in what they called maybe the best Monday news of all time — that Reformation has just launched a new, more affordable collection called “Obvious.” Considering how hipster-y the clothes are, they seem to have missed a golden opportunity to call it “Obvious Child” but whatevs. If you like backless bodysuits and crop tops, insert money here.

+ Speaking of my mother, she told me a story about the time, back in the ’80s, when she and the other government lawyers who were also young moms went to hear the newly appointed Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor speak. They were so eager to hear her explain how she managed it, how she managed to be a wife, a mother, and one of the most prominent judicial figures in the land.

O’Connor’s answer? Outsourcing.

Hire help, she advised the audience. Hire someone to do everything you don’t have time to do. The women nodded dumbly and left. “As if it had never occurred to us,” said my mom. “As if all we needed was to be more creative in our problem solving. We were government lawyers! O’Connor came from a wealthy family, but most of us didn’t have money to hire help. It was just so tone deaf.” 

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$100 Million For An Apartment & It’s Not Even Pretty

What will said oligarchs and financiers get for their zeros? Space. Some amenities. A view. The knowledge that they are blocking out the sun, much like Mr. Burns once did in Springfield, before he came to a bad end.

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Link Roundup! Best Retirement Ever; Think Like A Marketer; Manterruption, & More

Of course, room, board, and entertainment cost her $164,000 a year, but she gets to travel the world and dance every night. Maybe she’ll even meet a Jack Dawson!

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