Long Reads Of The Week 4 July

5 great reads you missed from around the web

1 | Vanessa Grigoriadis presents "Justin Bieber: A Case Study in Growing Up Cosseted and Feral" for Vulture, a study into the singer's metamorphosis from a green-eared 17-year-old pop sensation to a 20-year-old in trouble with the law and playing "dress up" in tattoos and "gangster clothes" as he hangs out with Lil Wayne. The most pertinent point? Grigoriadis explains why Bieber is not beyond redemption in the eyes of the media and the music industry alike.

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2 | N. R. Kleinfield explores what it takes to become a New York firefighter, focusing on one recruit’s baptism by fire in this piece for The New York Times which looks fantastic on the page and could quite possibly save your life. 

3 | Writing for The New Yorker Héctor Tobar explores the ordeal of the Chilean miners trapped in the 2010 Copiapó mining accident in the Atacama Desert, in a mine almost as deep as the world’s tallest building is high. The miners recall the prayers, the oily drinking water, the spoonful of canned fish and the esprit de corps that helped them survive in 29.5 degree heat for sixty nine days.

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4 | Alexandra Molotkow examines the phenomenon of the rock and roll groupie memoir including Pamela Des Barres work on Mick Jagger (Des Barres claims “Mick Jagger personified a penis”), Peggy Caserta’s Going Down With Janis and Cynthia Lennon’s account of her first husband’s less than attentive parenting skills. What drew these women to fickle rockstars? Writing for The Believer, Molotkow argues “Girlfriends and wives appeared as fairy-tale heroines who held royal sway in the courts of their rock-star loves.” 

5 | Ken Early looks at the phenomenon that is Lionel Messi in his piece for Slate and argues that the Argentinian forward will win the World Cup for his country by simply not moving, “Most of the time, he appears to be doing very little indeed…He drifts disinterestedly in the spaces between defenders.” A must read for those with a passion for how beautiful tactics make beautiful football.