Beam, wintering and metamorphosis, asphalt and gridlock, and more
Seven links to worthwhile thin(g/k)s
Hello dear reader,
Today marks an entire year since I lost Beam, our childhood pup. He gave us 15 years of unconditional love and an irreplaceable bond, a companionship and feistiness and softness of spirit that is sacred, magical, and altogether majestic. I hope you get to experience that kind of gift from a pet, and I hope you surround yourselves with people who err on the side of reaching out to you in your grief rather than staying silent and distanced. I remember Beam today and every day. And I remember all the dear and kind people who offered their warmth on this exact day last year, in the midst of what can only be described as an insane year. May we all always err on the side of being human, reaching out, and showing empathy to one another.
With that said, here are seven links to bits of the world I have been exploring this week, shared with the hope that you will find them to be an inspiring springboard for deeper thinking.
On my never-ending to-be-read list is Katherine May’s book titled Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times, and here is the snippet that got me hooked (and also contributed to my disappointment with seeing the NYT article on languishing that people in my circle were quick to adopt)
“Plants and animals don’t fight the winter; they don’t pretend it’s not happening and attempt to carry on living the same lives that they lived in the summer. They prepare. They adapt. They perform extraordinary acts of metamorphosis to get them through. Winter is a time of withdrawing from the world, maximizing scant resources, carrying out acts of brutal efficiency and vanishing from sight; but that’s where the transformation occurs. Winter is not the death of the life cycle, but its crucible.”
Asphalt, gridlock and common sense: Why do we keep adding freeway lanes when they merely worsen congestion? Is there a way to shift away from or get rid of car-based infrastructure?
Octavia Butler on reading as a form of primitive hypertext:
“I generally have four or five books open around the house--I live alone; I can do this--and they are not books on the same subject. They don't relate to each other in any particular way, and the ideas they present bounce off one another. And I like this effect. I also listen to audio-books, and I'll go out for my morning walk with tapes from two very different audio-books, and let those ideas bounce off each other, simmer, reproduce in some odd way, so that I come up with ideas that I might not have come up with if I had simply stuck to one book until I was done with it and then gone and picked up another.”
How financial interests influence news making decisions; this could also be titled, ‘New York Times and its deliberate misreporting and distortions’
Four inventions travel the world in search of their best selves: gunpowder, optical lens, spinning wheel, and the steam engine
Until next week!