Five Star Blog Roundup 428: Five Great Posts and an Ursula K. Le Guin Quote

Five Star Blog Roundup 428: Five Great Posts and an Ursula K. Le Guin Quote

photo credit: Jim Culp [ CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 ],  via Flickr

photo credit: Jim Culp [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0], via Flickr

This week's Five Star Blog Roundup is brought to you by the death of Ursula K. Le Guin, coming out with a real bang, the problem with social rules not always matching reality, the deep and awful loss of Dean Allen, and an Ursula K. Le Guin quote:

The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.
— Ursula K. Le Guin —

Happy reading!

"Ursula K. Le Guin" by Mary Robinette Kowal at Mary Robinette Kowal:

Nancy Aldrich, the artistic director of [Tears of Joy], and I went to Ursula’s house. It was a beautiful craftsman style home set on a hill nestled in a garden. It’s in a neighborhood, mind you, but when you’re in the garden, all you feel are the trees. She met us at the door looking just like her photos. Small, silver-haired, and powerful.

"Turning a Unicorn Into a Bat: The Post In Which We Announce the End of Our Marriage" by Josh and Laurel Weed at The Weed:

This risk for death is higher, statistically, for any person who has no hope of orientational attachment—not to mention the higher risk attendant to internalized homophobia/transphobia. This is not just the case for me. This is the case for any LGBTQIA person who chooses to forego human attachment. Your gay brother. Your Lesbian cousin. Your Trans nephew. They are all, by very definition, at higher risk of death if they are choosing to forego attachment for any religious or cultural reason. Literally.

In the end, the correct choice is obvious. We choose the option that makes sure people stay alive.

We should always choose the option that makes sure people stay alive.

I wish LDS people had more modeling of this.

"The rules about responding to call outs aren’t working" by Ruti Regan at Real Social Skills:

Tl;dr “Shut up and listen to marginalized people” isn’t quite the right rule, because it objectifies marginalized people, leaves us open to sabotage, enables abuse, and prevents us from working through conflicts in a substantive way. We need to do better by each other, and start listening for real.


The following two posts eulogize Dean Allen, who ran a website I loved dearly, Textism, before I even began blogging myself back in 2003. I never met him in person, but his death has rattled me, especially now when the web we all felt a near-utopian hope for so many years ago feels especially broken. Here are a couple of posts by people who loved him.

"Dean Allen, R.I.P." by Om Malik at Om:

Dean Cameron Allen, a 50-ish writer, designer, web-guy, and an all-around rascal, died this weekend in London, U.K. He leaves behind his parents, a former girlfriend and a lot of friends. If the universe feels a little hollow this week, now you know why. Jason Hoffman, founder of Joyent and a close friend, called out of the blue. He has just moved back from Stockholm, back to the Bay Area after a stint at Ericsson. “Dean is no more,” Jason said. He was fighting to hold back his tears, his voice shaking. I think I heard Jason say that Dean gave up on the struggle.

I couldn’t hear anything after — just the sound of blood pumping into my head.

"Dean Allen" by John Gruber at Daring Fireball:

Textism was such an achingly-good thing — an utterly personal website of exquisite writing and beautiful design. Unlike most who came from the print world — and Dean was a mightily talented print designer — Dean loved and truly got the web. He knew it wasn’t an ersatz throwaway stand-in for people too cheap to pay for the print edition of a magazine or newspaper. He knew the web was a wonderful new medium of its own, a glorious playground ripe for anything. Textism was well-paced.

Dean strove for perfection and often achieved it.

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