+
True
Carnegie Corporation of New York

Maurice Ashley came to the United States from Jamaica when he was 12 years old. After arriving, he took to the game of chess.

As he grew older, it became a larger and larger part of his life. This led to him becoming the first (and only!) black chess grandmaster. He spends a lot of time helping young people understand and play the game, translating it to various aspects of their regular lives.

How is chess like life, you ask? (Or maybe you didn't...) Anyway, here are some answers:



Quotes: Fischer, Marsalis, Lasker, Tartakower.


And consider season 1, episode 3 of "The Wire," in a classic scene where D'Angelo teaches chess pieces and moves to Bodie and Wallace, relating the game to their life experiences:

Watch this scene on YouTube.

But chess can also reveal our humanity.

In the movie “Searching for Bobby Fischer," there's a scene where the young chess prodigy Josh has beat several opponents in a tournament, leading up to his strongest competitor, who comes across as kind of robotic and unbeatable. Winning this tournament and the accompanying title is a big deal.

Eventually, when Josh sees that he will win the game after considering the moves laid out 12 deep in front of him (because you have to think many moves ahead in this game), he extends his hand to his opponent. He's offering to share the win, and the title, with his competitor. It's a selfless gesture, and one that shows who Josh really is as a human being. His opponent refuses, then very quickly loses the game and runs off in shame.

Josh runs off smiling into the arms of his parents.

It's a fabulous movie, by the way. Check it out some time. GIF from "Searching for Bobby Fischer." Full clip is here.

Back to our intrepid hero, Maurice.

He coached several teams of chess players in Harlem, including national champions The Raging Rooks and The Dark Knights. He also founded the Harlem Chess Center in 1999. He's the author of several books and is now working as a joint fellow at Harvard University's Berkman Center and MIT's Media Lab to bring chess and other classic games to a wider audience.

"It can take 40 good moves to win this game, and one wrong move to lose."
— Maurice Ashley

Kinda like life, eh?

via Chewy

Adorable Dexter and his new chew toy. Thanks Chewy Claus.

True

Every holiday season, millions of kids send letters asking for everything from a new bike to a pony. Some even make altruistic requests such as peace on Earth or helping struggling families around the holidays.

But wouldn’t the holiday season be even more magical if our pets had their wishes granted, too? That’s why Chewy Claus is stepping up to spread holiday cheer to America’s pets.

Does your dog dream of a month’s supply of treats or chew toys? Would your cat love a new tree complete with a stylish condo? How about giving your betta fish some fresh decor that’ll really tie its tank together?

Or do your pets need something more than mere creature comforts such as life-saving surgery?

Keep ReadingShow less
Celebrity

U.S. Soccer star expertly handles an Iranian reporter’s loaded questions about race.

Tyler Adams’s response proves exactly why he’s the captain of the US soccer team.

Tyler Adams expertly handles Iranian reporter's question

Reporters are supposed to ask the right questions to get to the truth but sometimes it seems sports reporters ask questions to throw you off your game. There's no doubt that this Iranian reporter who was questioning Tyler Adams, the US soccer team captain at the press conference during the World Cup had an agenda that didn't involve getting to the truth.

It's not clear if the questions were designed to throw the young player off of his game or if the goal was embarrassment. It really is hard to tell, but Adams handled the unexpectedly harsh encounter with intelligence and poise when some may have found it justified for him to get angry.

Keep ReadingShow less
Photo by Jeremy Wong on Unsplash

Teen raises $186,000 to help Walmart worker retire.

In America, many people have to work well past the age of retirement to make ends meet. While some of these people choose to work past retirement age because it keeps them active, some older people, like Nola Carpenter, 81, work out of necessity.

Carpenter has been working at Walmart for 20 years, way beyond most people's retirement age just so that she can afford to continue to pay her mortgage. When 19-year-old Devan Bonagura saw the woman looking tired in the break room of the store, he posted a video to his TikTok of Carpenter with a text overlay that said, "Life shouldn't b this hard..." complete with a sad face emoji.

In the video, Carpenter is sitting at a small table looking down and appearing to be exhausted. The caption of the video reads ":/ I feel bad." Turns out, a lot of other people did too, and encouraged the teen to start a GoFundMe, which has since completed.

Keep ReadingShow less
popular

Artist captures how strangers react to her body in public and it's fascinating

Haley Morris-Cafiero's photos might make you rethink how you look at people.

Credit: Haley Morris-Cafiero

Artist Haley Morris-Cafiero describes herself on her website as "part performer, part artist, part provocateur, part spectator." Her recent project, titled "Wait Watchers" has elements of all her self-descriptors.

In an email to us, Morris-Cafiero explained that she set up a camera in the street and stood in front of it, doing mundane activities like looking at a map or eating gelato. While she's standing there she sets off her camera, taking hundreds of photos.

Keep ReadingShow less
Family

Mom's praise of audiobooks 'post-baby' has parents sharing how it changed their lives

'Audiobooks have helped me regain a part of myself I worried was lost. Let people read however they can.'

Canva/Twitter

Let people read however they can.

Not too long ago, it seemed like you could only be loyal to one team—team “physical books” or team “e-readers.” There was no neutral territory.

That debate might have dwindled, but it echoes on as people take a stand on physical books versus audiobooks, which have become increasingly popular—nearly half of all Americans currently pay for an audio content subscription, and the average adult in the U.S. listens to digital audio for a little over an hour and a half each day, 28% of that being spoken word. Audiobooks had a particularly big surge during the COVID-19 pandemic, as listeners found the activity more comforting and satisfying than a regular book while under quarantine.

You’d think that the general mindset would be “reading in any form has great benefits, so do whatever you want!” But alas, humans do find odd hills to die on.

Keep ReadingShow less