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Sunday Reads: What It’s Like to Be Falsely Accused of Murder, Bathwater Drinkers and Peppa Pig, LGBTQ Pop Icon

Take it from me: Peppa Pig, the beloved British children’s TV phenomenon, is actually a little b-i-t-c-h. I genuinely don’t want my six-year-old niece to watch her show, out of fear she’ll absorb Peppa’s well-established selfishness and penchant for annoying antics. That said, I’d be lying if I said Peppa wasn’t iconic. She dropped her first album recently and judging by the incredibly positive response online — particularly among the LGBTQ+ community — you can’t deny she’s got the makings of a bona-fide pop diva. An amazing feat, considering she can’t even whistle:

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The Week In Features

Bathwater?!? I Think You Mean ‘Human Tea’
When gamer girl Belle Delphine made news for shilling her used bathwater to her thirsty fans, much of the internet wondered aloud what kind of disturbed soul would take her up on it. Clearly, those people have never been to r/YouDrinkBathwater, where chugging some tub H2O is just your run-of-the-mill weeknight activity, a practice subreddit members allege is something they were doing before Delphine made it trendy. 

LinkedIn’s Elite Rolodex
Nothing says #success like having “500+” connections on your LinkedIn profile. It’s been touted by the hustle-porn crowd as a way of showing potential employers how well-connected and influential you are — basically, like LinkedIn’s answer to Twitter’s blue “verified” checkmark. But, like much of the “work-harder-and-be-better” wisdom shared on LinkedIn, those 500 connections won’t actually get you very far

How Showtime Got Sexy
Where HBO had Taxicab Confessions and Real Sex, Showtime had Red Shoe Diaries. It was the first of its kind for the network, a network which, in the halcyon 1990s, was desperately searching for an edge to compete with HBO and rising VHS sales. The soft-core romance anthology brought the network to the fore, and began a years-long trend of mainstream erotica. Chris O’Connell spoke to the producers and actors (including David Duchovny) who made the steamy show a reality

Tarantino’s Hollywood, and Hollywood’s Charles Manson
A film about the Manson Family murders might seem like something only Quentin Tarantino going full Tarantino could pull off, but it’s a well that Hollywood has dipped into too many times to count, often with little success. Regardless, Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time In… Hollywood manages to pull it off, depicting 1960s-era Tinseltown with a sense of melancholy and introspection that seem almost unprecedented for the filmmaker (and Manson-oriented movies). 

Bachelors for Life
When we think of the perpetual bachelor, we often imagine them as either very cool, or very sad, and rarely anything in between. But in talking to men who are actually living commitment-free lives, lifelong bachelorhood is a spectrum. Some wouldn’t trade their freedom for the world; others are reckoning with all-consuming loneliness. But regardless of their situation, men who choose to be single for a very long time have more in common than you’d think

Heavy Data
It’s easy to want to just throw in the towel when it comes to protecting our data. But according to the filmmakers behind the The Great Hack — a new Netflix doc that uses the Cambridge Analytica scandal as a jumping off point to look at the dark side of internet innovation — you absolutely, positively, shouldn’t. Tim Grierson spoke to writer-directors Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim about navigating a world where everyone is vying for our data

The Relaxing Sounds of the Lawnmower
If you think about it, anything can be ASMR — folding laundry, tapping on glass, power-washing porches, even revving a lawnmower. So perhaps it’s unsurprising that YouTube has an ever-increasing number of videos devoted to the soothing sounds of mundane DIY tasks, the comment sections of which are downright cuddlefests

Solving the Suicide Epidemic with ‘Man Therapy’
No demographic is at a higher risk of suicide than men working a physically-demanding, financially-insecure blue-collar job. It’s a crisis the state of Colorado knows all too well, and one they’re now attempting to solve with “Man Therapy,” a unique, state-run mental-health program with two clear aspirations: 1) To ease the stigma and embarrassment of having mental health issues in the first place with humor and wit; and 2) to not lose the audience with clinical or touchy-feely mumbo jumbo. Against all odds, it’s working.

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