Thursday, May 8, 2014
By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Thursday, May 8, 2014
Death of an Original Hipster
Farley Mowat, one of Canada’s best-known authors and a noted environmentalist, has died at age 92.
Mary Shaw-Rimmington, the author’s assistant, confirmed his passing to CBC News on Wednesday afternoon. Mowat died at his home in Port Hope, Ont.
Mowat, author of dozens of works including Lost in the Barrens and Never Cry Wolf, introduced Canada to readers around the world and shared everything from his time abroad during the Second World War, to his travels in the North and his concern for the deteriorating environment.
More than 17 million copies of his books, which have been translated into dozens of languages, have been sold worldwide. The gregarious writer was a consummate storyteller, whose works spanned non-fiction, children’s titles and memoirs.
Describing Mowat as “a passionate Canadian,” Prime Minster Stephen Harper touted the writer as “a natural storyteller with a real gift for sharing personal anecdotes in a witty and endearing way.” (Source: CBC News)
Meanwhile, we may have reached “peak beard frequency,” according to research published in the journal Biology Letters recently.
Men’s facial hair trends may be guided by Darwinian selection, researchers hypothesized. So they asked women and men to rate different faces with “four standard levels of beardedness.” The faces that were rarer were rated as more appealing. It’s an evolutionary phenomenon known as “negative frequency-dependent sexual selection.”
“The idea is that perhaps people start copying the George Clooneys and the Joaquin Phoenixs and start wearing those beards, but then when more and more people get onto the bandwagon the value of being on the bandwagon diminishes, so that might be why we’ve hit ‘peak beard’,” study author Prof Rob Brooks told the BBC.
“Peak beard” is reached when the most men in professions not usually associated with facial hear sport beards. The BBC suggests that may have happened in January when a Newsnight
Some say the Rubicon was crossed in January when Jeremy Paxman, the BBC Newsnight presenter, shaved his beard off, saying “beards are SO 2013.”
When “peak beard” frequency is reached, the pendulum swings back toward lesser-bristled chins — a trend we may be witnessing now, the scientists say. (Source: Discovery.com)
#RIP #FarleyMowat The original hipster http://t.co/1jDhLZC3Ow pic.twitter.com/O9PzOMl35A
— mackaycartoons (@mackaycartoons) May 8, 2014
REPUBLISHED in the Edmonton Journal, the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, and Yahoo News Canada.