For those who have everything
March 9, 2013

It may look like a contraption that belongs in Dr. Frankenstein's lab, but the TCA-3 coffee siphon ($160) from Hario makes "the most deeply nuanced" java you'll ever drink. Water is boiled in the lower globe over a butane burner, causing it to rise into the tumbler above, where freshly ground coffee awaits. The grounds should be stirred before the liquid begins trickling downward again. For "everyday caffeine fiends," K-Cups should do; this device is for true devotees. Source: New York
The Week Staff

campaign 2016
12:03 p.m. ET

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a contender for the GOP nomination for president, offered his take on the Baltimore riots on Laura Ingraham's show this morning, saying a "lack of fathers" and a "lack of a moral code in our society" were responsible for the "thievery and thuggery." 

He also said, "I came through the train on Baltimore last night, I'm glad the train didn't stop."

Listen to the rest of his comments here, via Media Matters: —Ryu Spaeth

Ryu Spaeth

This just in
11:40 a.m. ET

The Baltimore Orioles announced Tuesday they would postpone the night's scheduled game against the Chicago White Sox due to the ongoing unrest in Baltimore.

The Orioles and Major League Baseball postponed Monday night's game as well after rioting broke out across the city, resulting in widespread damage and around 200 arrests. And on Saturday, Baltimore officials broadcast a message into Camden Yards asking fans to stay inside the venue as protests raged outside.

Baltimore is scheduled to play at home through Sunday, though some of those games could be postponed as well because of the city's newly imposed 10 p.m. curfew. Jon Terbush

Tax Day
11:30 a.m. ET
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

While tax prep giant H&R Block initially estimated that half of ObamaCare (ACA) subsidy recipients would have to pay money back to the IRS, the final tally is even worse:

Almost two-thirds of tax filers who received insurance via the state or federal insurance marketplaces had to pay back an average of $729 of the Advance Premium Tax Credit (APTC), cutting their potential refund by almost one-third, according to analysis of filing data by H&R Block. [H&R Block]

For the rest of H&R Block customers, tax season was a little less traumatic: About one quarter of insurance subsidy recipients saw an increase in their tax refunds, while 13 percent saw no change.

The confusion has occurred because — on top of the complexity the ACA adds to the tax code — estimating income in advance to calculate how big an insurance subsidy should be is difficult for non-salaried workers. As Timothy Jost, a Washington and Lee University law professor, explains, "If you’re a person who is a waitress or worked for a landscape company and you're asked how much money you're going to make, you're really just throwing a dart at the board." Bonnie Kristian

Numbers don't lie
11:23 a.m. ET
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

If your application to one of America's top 40 colleges and universities is waitlisted, don't hold your breath.

New data from U.S. News and World Report found that a number of selective schools, including Johns Hopkins, MIT, Princeton, Middlebury College, and Bucknell, have each accepted less than four percent of waitlisted applicants since 2011.

Stanford has the lowest acceptance rate for waitlisted applicants — in 2014, just one percent of those waitlisted at Stanford were eventually accepted.

The data isn't exhaustive — some colleges, including Harvard, Brown, and Yale, didn't release figures about their waitlist acceptance rates. Still, admissions officers admitted to Bloomberg that most students who are placed on waitlists don't have very good odds of being accepted. "There are students who might think the wait list is a neat way to know they were close to getting admitted," Jim Rawlins, admissions director at the University of Oregon, told Bloomberg, "but there's others who will wish they'd just been denied." Meghan DeMaria

10:48 a.m. ET

President Obama on Tuesday hosted Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the White House, and he used the occasion to thank the island nation for its greatest exports. No, Obama did not extol Japan's vaunted cars or technology, but rather its contributions to art and drunken office bonding experiences.

"Today is also a chance for Americans, especially our young people, to say thank you for all the things we love from Japan," Obama said. "Like karate, karaoke, manga, and anime — and of course, emojis."

Obama has hinted in the past he's a closet karaoke aficionado. —Jon Terbush

10:25 a.m. ET

London archaeologists have made quite a gruesome discovery.

Researchers found a 2,000-year-old cooking pot near the Walbrook river — and it was filled with human bones. The area had previously yielded 40 human skulls, but the new find adds another layer of intrigue to the mix. Archaeologists found the pot while excavating the site to make way for London's Crossrail Project, a new railway line in the city.

The site, known as Londinium in the Roman world, was the capital of a Roman province, Ancient Origins explains. The archaeologists suspect that the skulls belong to rebels who were slaughtered during the rebellion of the Celtic Queen Boudicca. Boudicca, queen of the Iceni tribe, led a revolt of British forces against the Roman empire in 60-61 C.E.

Before the cooking pot was discovered, historians believed the skulls had landed in the river bank accidentally, washed there from another civilization. But the new find suggests the skulls were placed there on purpose, since the bone-filled pot was no accident. The skulls also showed signs of trauma from weapons, suggesting they belonged to Romans who were killed by Boudicca's forces. Meghan DeMaria

Developing story
9:59 a.m. ET
Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Police arrested close to 200 people in Baltimore after a peaceful protest Monday over the death of Freddie Gray descended into violence and ultimately rioting.

Protesters set fire to 144 vehicles and 15 buildings, the city said Tuesday, with the escalating chaos prompting Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) to declare a state of emergency and deploy 500 National Guard troops. At least 15 police officers were injured by protesters hurling bricks, bottles, and other objects.

"Too many people have spent generations building up this city for it to be destroyed by thugs," Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said.

The protests erupted hours after a funeral for Gray, the unarmed black man who died of a severe spinal injury while in police custody. Jon Terbush

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