15 Things I Liked Enough to Show You: 11 April 2015 – 8 May 2015
I have been so very busy over the last month with work and travelling to the Mom 2.0 conference and to California to see clients that this is the first 10 Things roundup I've been able to put together since before the 11th of April. As such, I've expanded this particular 10 Things to 15. It's not all new, but it's all pretty good if you haven't seen it before.
Matt Debenham's "I’m An Adjunct Who Also Works In A Grocery Store" at BuzzFeed Ideas:
While I genuinely love both my teaching job and my retail job, it’s a daily reminder that shit, as they say, is fucked up. A reminder that America is a very different place than just a few decades ago. While all the adjuncts I know are juggling multiple campuses, most of my fellow grocery employees — nonmanagement level — have second jobs as well.
Crosby, Stills & Nash's "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" (1969) is one of the best songs ever. I dig it out about once a year and listen to it on repeat:
Callum Paton's "Mr, Mrs, Miss... and Mx: Transgender people will be able to use new title on official documents [in the UK]" at Daily Mail Online:
A new gender neutral title 'Mx' is to join the honorifics 'Mr, Mrs, Miss and Ms' on driving licences and other official documents, the first change to officially recognised titles in decades.
Royal Mail, high street banks, government departments and some universities all now accept Mx which is used by transgender people or other individuals who do not identify with a particular gender.
The title has been added, without fanfare, to official forms and databases and is under consideration by the Oxford English Dictionary for inclusion in its next edition.
Leela Corman's "PTSD: The Wound That Never Heals" at Nautilus recounts her journey with PTSD after the death of her first child. It's a difficult but important read if you or anyone you know has suffered trauma.
Wilco's "One Sunday Morning" (2011) helped me move slowly through conference comedown after Mom 2.0 conference less than a week ago:
Eric Adams' "A hater’s guide to astrology: How I learned to stop getting angry about people’s dumb beliefs" at Salon:
“Conscious racial and other discriminations are slowly fading,” Banaji says. “As modern, urban people move away from discriminating between ‘us and them’ along the usual dimensions of geography, religion, race, gender, sexuality, it’s the differences in what we believe that matter more and more.”
Call it an infinite loop of bigotry: Our low-level intolerances will expand to fill the space allotted for them. As a result, our focus on the details of peoples’ lives will generate still more prejudices.
Kevin Ashton's "Brainstorming Does Not Work" at Medium's Galleys confirms what group work from elementary school through to professional jobs in my 30s taught me:
Research into brainstorming has a clear conclusion. The best way to create is to work alone and evaluate solutions as they occur. The worst way to create is to work in large groups and defer criticism. Steve Wozniak, Steve Jobs’s cofounder at Apple and the inventor of its first computer, offers the same advice:
“Work alone. You’re going to be best able to design revolutionary products and features if you’re working on your own. Not on a committee. Not on a team.”
I love Tracy Chapman's cover of "Stand By Me". I remember listening to her velvet through walkman headphones 20 years ago, and she still stirs me:
Chuck Wendig's "The 10 Commandments of Authorial Self-Promotion" at Terrible Minds:
What do you do? How far can you go? What should you say?
Thus, I bring you these ten tablets.
Ten commandments about self-promotion for authors. In a later post I’ll get into the larger practicalities of self-promotion — what seems to work for me, what seems to do poop-squat for me — but for now, we’re going to cover the overall basics.
Let us begin.
Robin Black's "What's So Great About Young Writers?" at NYTimes.com:
Those honors — the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award, the National Book Foundation’s 5 Under 35 and many others — carry not only financial rewards but also career-long prestige. I applaud the goal of supporting writers as they are starting out, but there is a problem when the awards benefit only young writers, usually on their first or second book, as opposed to writers of any age who are at that stage.
Bikini Kill's "Suck My Left One" (1992) puts in the right mood for life some days. Turn it up and try it on:
Melissa McCracken's "I See Music Because I Have Synesthesia, So I Decided To Paint What I Hear" at Bored Panda:
As a synesthete, the music I hear is translated into a flow of texture and colors. Synethesia, although not disorientating, can sometimes leave me at odds trying to describe what I can see to others.
Painting in oils and acrylics is a way to express and exhibit the beautiful colors that I see on a day to day basis, whether it’s hearing someone’s name, or that song on the radio. I paint a variety of artists from Led Zeppelin to Stevie Wonder.
Daniel Victor's "The one word journalists should add to Twitter searches that you probably haven’t considered" at Medium:
You probably skipped right over the most important word used by the five sources above. It’s everyone’s favorite word, and one you should add to any Twitter search that’s seeking personal experiences:
(And its close cousin “my.”)
Lothar & The Hand People's "Machines" (1969) is fitting when the internet feels noisy and your oven's acting up:
Nathan Jurgenson's "Facebook: Fair and Balanced" at Cyborgology:
The most crucial thing people forget about social media, all technologies, is that certain people with certain politics, insecurities, and financial interests structure them. On an abstract level, yeah, we may all know that these sites are shaped, designed, and controlled by specific humans. But so much of the rhetoric around code, “big” data, and data science research continues to promote a fallacy that the way sites operate is almost natural, that they are simply giving users what they want, which then downplays their own interests and role and responsibility in structuring what happens. The greatest success of “big” data so far has been for those with that data to sell their interests as neutral.