FROM Miriam Lynch
New pools bring diversity to aquatics American swimmer Simone Manuel broke the world record in the women's 100-meter freestyle at the Rio Olympics last week, tying for first place. But her win represented another barrier smashed, as the first African-American woman to win a gold medal in swimming. DnA visited the newly-renovated Central Pool in South LA and looks at what it'll take to erase the color barrier to swimming -- which can have deadly consequences. We talked to the pool's architect Michael Lehrer, some children enjoying the pool, the head of LA's Recreation and Parks Department, and members of the group Diversity in Aquatics.
George Saunders: Lincoln in the Bardo (Part I) Lincoln in the Bardo dramatizes a grieving President Lincoln as he visits the grave of his beloved son Willie, who died at age eleven. In the novel, the buried dead believe they're not dead -- "they're sick and refer to their coffins as "sick boxes."
Shaking up the USDA, 'The Beef Cookbook' and 'Tartine All Day' Peggy Lowe explains why Trump’s pick for USDA Secretary is rattling rural America. Dario Cecchini talks future plans for Chianti ramen, and Richard Turner shares cuts from “PRIME: The Beef Cookbook.” Writer Matthew Sedacca looks at the controversy behind liquid smoke. Jonathan Gold tries Chengdu-style dishes, and Elisabeth Prueitt of Tartine fills us in on the latest. Plus, chef Michael Beckman shares a recipe for cactus confit.
Morgan Parker: There Are More Beautiful Things than Beyoncé Morgan Parker says that the poems in her book There Are Things More Beautiful than Beyoncé take a stand against the clichés of the dominant culture.
Why is Trump so behind on filling staff jobs, establishing concrete policies? Yesterday Donald Trump signed a “decision memo” to revamp the air traffic control system. But there was little legislative detail in the plan. There’s not much to other splashy announcements from the White House, including tax cuts and the arms deal with Saudi Arabia. And hundreds of positions are unfilled in federal agencies.