Josh Taylor, journalist
“How did a cartoon frog become the icon for the alt-right and Donald Trump?”
Sophie Benjamin, engagement editor
“Twice, like his political ally Tony Abbott before him, Christensen seriously contemplated becoming a priest.
“At 21, he was accepted into a seminary in Melbourne but withdrew after a couple of weeks.
“‘It’s probably going to be controversial [but] one thing I can say is that there were some blokes you immediately identified as gay and I think there is that element that do go there but then there are other people in there who you were quite sure they weren’t gay,’ he observes.”
Cass Knowlton, editor
“Mr. Ullrich sets out to strip away the mythology that Hitler created around himself in ‘Mein Kampf,’ and he also tries to look at this ‘mysterious, calamitous figure’ not as a monster or madman, but as a human being with ‘undeniable talents and obviously deep-seated psychological complexes.’
“‘In a sense,’ he says in an introduction, ‘Hitler will be “normalized” — although this will not make him seem more “normal.” If anything, he will emerge as even more horrific.'”
Sally Whyte, journalist
“I remember being tall enough to just reach the metal pole on the boundary fence while being perched on the wonky plank seating down at Melville Oval. “See the red, white and blue team?” Dad instructed. “That’s the Bulldogs. We go for them, alright?”. Easy. I was a switched on little fella. Sometime later, back at home, we were watching AFL on the telly. “See the blue and white? That’s the Cats. We go for them, alright?” Surely this was a stitch-up. We go for Bulldogs, mate. Despite a sustained effort to explain the differentiations between the Western Border Football League and the elite level Australian Football League, Dad conceded as I stood my ground. A mutation in the family genus was born. A Bulldog for life.”
Myriam Robin, media reporter
“The thing is, there are more than 12 constellations the Sun can pass through. Some are smaller, or have fainter stars, so they get ignored. The biggest is Ophiuchus, the serpent bearer, which is a huge constellation taking up quite a bit of celestial real estate, and in fact the Sun spends more time in Ophiuchus than Scorpius! Scorpius has brighter stars, and an obvious scorpionlike shape, so it gets better press.
“So no, NASA didn’t add in Ophiuchus, or change the zodiac, or anything like that. It’s been around this whole time, but it’s been ignored by astrologers.”
Dan Wood, subeditor
“‘The profound effects of loneliness on health and independence are a critical public health problem,’ said Dr. Carla M. Perissinotto, a geriatrician at the University of California, San Francisco. ‘It is no longer medically or ethically acceptable to ignore older adults who feel lonely and marginalized.’”
Sophie Benjamin, engagement editor
“My life since the beginning of the bombing in Aleppo has become about trying to stay alive. It is like I live in the jungle and I’m trying to survive until tomorrow. When the planes come, I try to shelter in a more secure building. When there is artillery fire, I go to the lower floors. I’m constantly fleeing. Before the siege, I relied on fast food places, but now everything is closed. I don’t know how to cook, and there are days when I only eat one meal, and others when I have none at all. Before the siege, I spent the day outside looking for stories to film. But since the siege, I’m hungry and weaker and I stay at home more.”