When I transplanted my family from Florida to North Carolina, hugely pregnant, with just enough cash to finance the move, we were fucked. But Florida was suffocating, I was dying in academia, and there was no way we could stay in roach-infested, moldy,…
One of my favourite writers on the web today (@voraciousbrain). Read this and you’ll see why.
At my daughter’s preschool, they asked the class how to cook a turkey. Here are some of the (hilarious) responses:
"Put an apron on, put sauce on, put butter on, and spicy sauce. Put the juice on, then we cook it. More spicy sauce. Eat it with a fork, spoon, knife, and napkin. Then more butter in the pan." - my daughter
"Put flour on the turkey" - a boy
"Put the turkey in the pot. Take it out after 3 hours. Eat it with a knife and spoon." - a boy
"Just have to put it in the oven and cook it for like this (holds up 10 fingers). The oven will get it and it will smell good. My Dad always likes hash browns with it. The turkey will get really hot, then you it with sauce. Put something else on it." - a boy
"Put water in it, squeeze out the water. Cook it in the oven for 1 hour. Take it out, then you put it on the plate. Then you eat it. It tastes good!" - a boy
"Put it in the oven. Put the cinnamon on. Take it out of the oven and put it on the plate, then eat it. Water went inside the turkey." - a girl
"Put an oven under it, put paper on top of it. Put a lid on top, put water and spice on it. Cook it for 2 minutes. Eat it when there’s a plate." - a girl
As you look at the navigational charts for your voyage today, determine the islands of temptation that lay along your route. Ulysses pacts are decisions made when you are free to choose, that self-limit your ability to make future decisions. They are self-imposed restrictions that anticipate the possibility that your will may be thwarted by the beautiful songs of deadly distractions.
Sometimes the only way to impose your will is to surrender your ability to choose.
James Shelley, “Sirens”
Caesura Letters is one of my favourite places to learn and explore. Subscribe to the free edition.
“Why aren’t we kinder? Here’s what I think: Each of us is born with a series of built-in confusions that are probably somehow Darwinian. These are: (1) we’re central to the universe (that is, our personal story is the main and most interesting story, the only story, really); (2) we’re separate from the universe (there’s US and then, out there, all that other junk – dogs and swing-sets, and the State of Nebraska and low-hanging clouds and, you know, other people), and (3) we’re permanent (death is real, o.k., sure – for you, but not for me).”—George Saunders’s Advice to Graduates - NYTimes.com
"Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo" is a grammatically correct sentence in American English, used as an example of how homonyms and homophones can be used to create complicated linguistic constructs. It has been discussed in literature since 1972 when the sentence was used by William J. Rapaport, an associate professor at the University at Buffalo.
“You want to share things with other people, but on the other hand you don’t want to just feed the machine that needs millions of fantasies and objects and products and opinions to be fed into it every day in order to keep on going. And that’s perhaps a reason one is tempted to be silent sometimes.”—A quote from an excerpt published in Harper’s Magazine from Susan Sontag: The Complete Rolling Stone Interview] by Jonathan Cott.
“The test of first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function. One should, for example, be able to see that things are hopeless and yet be determined to make them otherwise.”—
“Papyrus rolls and Twitter have much in common: They were their generation’s signature means of “instant” communication. Indeed, as Tom Standage reveals in his scintillating new book, social media is anything but a new phenomenon. From the papyrus letters that Cicero and other Roman statesmen used to exchange news across the Empire to the rise of hand-printed tracts of the Reformation to the pamphlets that spread propaganda during the American and French revolutions, Standage chronicles the increasingly sophisticated ways people shared information with each other, spontaneously and organically, down the centuries.”—