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Sitdown Sunday: How the Love is Blind cast felt about the show

Settle back in a comfy chair and sit back with some of the week’s best longreads.

Image: Twitter

IT’S A DAY of rest, and you may be in the mood for a quiet corner and a comfy chair.

We’ve hand-picked the week’s best reads for you to savour.

1. Capturing deaf-blind life

Doug Roland helped a man who is deaf-blind cross the road in New York at 4am one day. The experience inspired him to write a film about a deaf-blind man trying to navigate his way through the city.

(New York Times, approx 8 mins reading time)

“It was the first time I’d met a deaf-blind person and he just took my arm and trusted me, a total stranger on a New York street, to direct him,” recalled Mr. Roland, who instinctively used his finger to trace his end of the conversation on the man’s palm, with the man responding on notebook paper. “There was a gift in every one of those exchanges,” Mr. Roland recalled. “In that chance encounter, there was an instant connection with someone from a community I knew nothing about.”

2. They killed their abusive father

The killing of abusive father Mikhael Khachaturyan by his three teenage daughters led to a backlash from the patriarchy in Russia.

(The Guardian, approx 25 mins reading time)

Others – including their mother, Khachaturyan’s estranged wife – came to the sisters’ defence, refusing to accept that such an egregious motive could be behind their actions. As lawyers and investigators began piecing together the Khachaturyan family story, it became clear this was not a cold-blooded murder. Over hundreds of pages of court documents and transcripts of witness testimony, a picture emerges, which Mikhail Khachaturyan’s sisters contest, of a household terrorised by his paranoiac despotism – of routine sexual abuse, beatings, humiliation and death threats.

3. Love is Blind

The show we all love to hate… and how its participants felt about it.

(The Guardian, 5 mins reading time)

Powers says he doesn’t regret anything, and he has forgiven her harsh words about his sexual prowess in an argument that went viral (“You know how you tell me that this is the best sex of your life?” she tells him in the clip. “Have you noticed that I don’t return the compliment?”) “It definitely hurt,” he says. “I think I’ve watched it about five or six times to come to terms with it. I wish she could have said it to me off camera. But I could see that I wasn’t being as passionate as I could be.”

4. Safer sex scenes

Meet the intimacy coordinators who make Hollywood’s sex scenes safer.

(BBC, approx 10 mins reading time)

“We have stunt coordinators, choreograph fight scenes and really take care of people when physical violence is involved,” says Alicia Rodis, who first trained as a fight choreographer. “But then when it comes to intimacy and nudity, which is another high-risk situation, there was no consideration at all. It is shocking.”

5. Saving Europe’s ‘secret Amazon’

Never heard of Polesia? It’s being called Europe’s ‘secret Amazon’ and the race is on to save it.

(The Guardian, approx 14 mins reading time)

However, unlike its Brazilian cousin, this region is not best-known for its wildlife but something more sinister. In April 1986 this forgotten part of the Soviet Union made headlines after reactor 4 of the Chernobyl power plant blew up. The explosion cast a long shadow over Belarus, which absorbed 70% of the escaped radiation, making it one of the most contaminated places on Earth. Now another catastrophe could be about to befall its people: the construction of the E40 waterway, a 2,000km (1,240-mile) inland shipping route linking the Black Sea and the Baltic that would slice through the wilderness and involve dredging inside the Chernobyl exclusion zone.

6. Making foods crispy

There’s an entire industry dedicated to making foods crispy. We salute their work. 

(Bon Appetit, approx 16 mins reading time)

To assess crispiness, which Szczesniak categorized as “brittleness,” you had to measure the force a bite needs to break a food. Her team used human panels to test texture, but she also invented a few machines, including the Texturometer, a mechanical mouth (with blades, not teeth, I know) that spits out readings on crispiness and other traits. Today Frito-Lay and its competitors have their own versions of the Texturometer to measure products’ crispiness.


This 2018 piece is about how you can rent a family in Japan.

(The New Yorker, approx 43 mins reading time)

Nishida contacted Family Romance and placed an order for a wife and a daughter to join him for dinner. On the order form, he noted his daughter’s age, and his wife’s physique: five feet tall and a little plump. The cost was forty thousand yen, about three hundred and seventy dollars. The first meeting took place at a café. The rental daughter was more fashionable than Nishida’s real daughter—he used the English word “sharp”—but the wife immediately impressed him as “an ordinary, generic middle-aged woman.” He added, “Unlike, for example, Ms. Matsumoto”—he nodded toward my interpreter, Chie Matsumoto—“who might look like a career woman.” Chie, a journalist, teacher, and activist, who has spiky salt-and-pepper hair and wears plastic-framed glasses, laughed as she translated this qualification.

More: The best reads from every previous Sitdown Sunday>

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