Showing posts from April, 2017

Showing Up

While I'm on vacation/holiday/family visit , I went to a Rally for Science. (The days are warm in Tucson, so we rallied instead of marching.) And it was great! I haven't attended rallies or other events at home in Canada, for various reasons. For one thing, although I'm a U.S. citizen with family in the country and I and vote, I do intend to live in Canada for-you-know-ever. For another, we live in the country, so rallying with others (or even attending evening functions) is a commitment--planning, leaving early, weather, the usual. (So maybe they weren't so much reasons as excuses.) In any case: I went to this. I'm on vacation, so I have no "opportunity cost" calculations (if I spend all morning at THIS event, I can't be working on THAT project). The place was relatively convenient, since my sister was driving, we're mobile and could park far away without consequence, and we agreed that we could leave any time we became uncomfortable. (Somet

Words Mean Things

Consider the following labels for ways one can spend time: Vacation. Holiday. Family visit. Their meanings overlap but are not identical.  I am currently experiencing at least one of them. By the time I get home, I will have cycled through all three, individually and all together, and no doubt all possible combinations of any two.  While I'm away, I plan to do loads of nothing, though I am taking notebooks (of course) (yes, plural) and my sister has assured me she will share art supplies. Sort of an R&R Boot Camp.  Once I go, I'll be happy about it. And also happy once I'm back home. 

Yes! and No!

From time to time, I get great satisfaction from cooking up the carcass of the holiday turkey. Broth! Soup! Good smells! Competence! Thrift! Say YES to actions that expand your skill set! Today, I'm throwing away something that I think was the carcass of a holiday turkey. It might be something else--I'm really not sure at this point. And at the moment, I just don't have what it takes to investigate, even if it means I'm missing out on all the things in the previous paragraph. Say NO to actions that don't bring you joy! In light of that particular experience, I was amused to read this essay at Brevity this morning. By Shawna Kenney, the essay's entitled, "Never Call Yourself a Writer, and Other Rules for Writing." It's awesome. My favourite excerpt: "Say this writing mantra every day: I am my own mantra." Your mileage may vary, and rightly so--the essay is full of fun. Sometimes the right answer is "yes," sometimes it

The Tapestry of a Story

Over the weekend, I sampled the S-Town podcast while I was on the treadmill. Aaaaaand THERE went the rest of the weekend. Sure, I ate and drank and went outdoors and got the newspaper and did the Sunday crossword. But I also listened. Here's some background. A. It's produced by those who brought the Serial podcast to the world, which in turn was made by experienced folks from This American Life, and focuses on the life of a character in a small town in the southern U.S. B. It's in a significantly different format (aside from being a story told by voices on the radio): all seven episodes were released at once. It thus lacks the "simultaneous reporting" feature of the two seasons of Serial and other true-crime or investigative journalism podcasts, when attention to the initial story brings forward information that can shed light on or solve the initial mystery. The fact of A made me, frankly, a little leery. I liked Serial, but I've heard storytelle