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The Recommender: Sarah Lawson, Car Whisperer

The best things on the Internet (and sometimes off) this week, curated by Fast Company employees.

The Recommender: Sarah Lawson, Car Whisperer
Sarah Lawson’s favorite car is the 1961 Ferrari GT California. The car appears in the 1986 film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off [Photo: courtesy of Paramount Pictures, Archive]
Sarah LawsonPhoto: Celine Grouard for Fast Company

Name: Sarah Lawson
Role at Fast Company: Assistant editor. “I get to work closely with our Most Creative People, so I spend lots of time chatting with them about what they’re up to. I also write, work on our editorial live events, and prank my coworkers–which leaves just enough time in my day for trying to explain my job to my mom.”
Twitter: @sklawson
Titillating Fact: When I was a kid, I was really into cars. Not glamorous cars like Ferraris—I mean I memorized the model years of Fords and Nissans. Coincidentally, this came in handy one day when my family was in a hit-and-run car accident where the offending driver sped off before my parents could identify anything about the car. So I casually walked over to the police officer at the scene and told him the car was a white ’93 Altima with a such-and-such license plate and a missing hubcap. They caught the guy the next day! (I was 5.)

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I also have cat-like reflexes that do not, and never will, apply to sports.

Things She’s Loving:


1. An Unnecessary Woman

I’m a forever-delinquent member of a ladies-only book club, and I’m still working through last month’s book, An Unnecessary Woman, by Rabih Alameddine. It was nominated for the National Book Award last year and is told solely through the perspective of a 72-year-old Beirut woman named Aaliyah Saleh, who spends her days translating tomes from English and French to classical Arabic. My Kindle app tells me I still have about bajillion hours left in it, mostly because I keep reading and re-reading passages to soak up Alameddine’s impeccable devices and Aaliyah’s suuuuuuper-searing (and often hilarious) criticisms on everything from Americans, to Arabs, to art.

2. 99% Invisible

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Since Serial has been on a break, I’ve had a real “Mail-Kimp”-sized hole in my life when it comes to children mispronouncing words on podcasts. Luckily, I’m a big fan of 99% Invisible, produced by one of our Most Creative People, Roman Mars. It’s all about the ways that design and structures invisibly shape our lives and have done so throughout history. (This week’s episode on why American money is so lame was taken from Roman’s TED talk last week and was particularly good). Plus, you can always count on one of his sons–usually Mazlo—to adorably mispronounce something in the wrap-up credits.

3. YouTube: “Dog Left in SUV Blares Horn Because Seriously, People, WTF?”

Not a whole lot needs to be said about this visionary dog, besides the fact that he is all of us at the end of this long week. (Of note is the fact that he wasn’t left in a hot car. He’s just pissed.) Anyone else feeling put-upon by humanity this week?