Tour De France Cyclists Take A Smoke “Break” In 1920

1920 Tour De France Photograph

While some of today’s Tour de France cyclists engage in vices to enhance their performance, premier cyclists of yesteryear took part in activities that would probably hinder their athleticism, including champagne and painkillers (likely together).

Featured above are cyclists Vervaeke and Geldhol, taking a smoke “break” during the 1920 Tour de France. In this photo we can also see the incredible transformation of the race bike and its accompanying protective gear–incredibly enough, the bicycle helmet as we know it wasn’t invented until the 1970s.

Bizarre Human Mating Rituals That Challenge Your Understanding Of Romance

Humans are enormously variable. Just about every institution we have is subject to endless modification across cultures and throughout time. Even the underlying assumptions behind things we take for granted, such as democracy, money, or the use of money to undermine democracy, are subject to change from one country to the next. Of course, some institutions are more variable than others.

Sex, for example, is something humans can’t seem to get right. We keep changing the rules, coming up with new customs to regulate the act, changing those regulations on a cultural whim, and then declaring that there is only one right way to do it and punishing people who would dare to think the rules could be changed for any reason.

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Meet Japan’s Internet Café Refugees

With affordable housing out of reach for many low wage workers in Japan, internet cafes have assumed a new role: living quarters. These internet cafe “refugees”, many of whom consider themselves temporary workers–started appearing around the 1990s. As Japan’s recession depresses the already low wages of temporary workers (around 38 percent of the working population), the problem doesn’t show signs of abating any time soon. You can watch MediaStorm’s full series on the phenomenon here.

This Retreating World: 31 Remarkable Photos From The World War One Trenches

WW1 Photos Austrian Prisoners

Austrian prisoners pose for a picture in Russia in 1915. Source: Library of Congress

The First World War was not “the war to end all wars.” It was, instead, the beginning of the kind of modern mass violence that would scar the century. For the first time, the armies of Europe used such tools of slaughter as the flamethrower, poison gas, the tank, and war planes.

The war’s catalyst came in the summer of 1914, when Gavrilo Princip, a radicalized Yugoslav nationalist, fired two shots into a car in a Sarajevo side street, killing the Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife. In the following weeks, all knots of European diplomacy tightened, and a net of alliances dragged the continent into a war that would last for the next four years. 19 million people died, more than half of them civilians.

The gallery below offers a window into the fighting in Europe during the first truly modern war – a conflict that, whether we realize it or not, shaped the dimensions and norms of the world we live in today.

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