As I write this, it’s snowing after a string of unseasonably warm days, including one in the low 70s (Fahrenheit).
I’m looking forward to spring and have been diverting myself by making lists and plans for our yard. I’m hoping to make some headway this year on projects that have taken a bit of a back burner: planting trees, reconfiguring some of the flowerbeds, pulling out bushes that are nearing the end of their lives. I’m going to order a lilac bush (a delightfully old fashioned cultivar) and some hydrangeas soon–I’ve always wanted both, and I’ve found the perfect spots in my yard to plant them.
I’ve also been thinking about ways to manage our neighbor on the north side: she is one of those people who is obsessive about their lawn and got in our faces last year about how she thinks “people like us” shouldn’t be allowed to buy houses. She has an unnatural attachment to our yard as our house used to belong to her brother (who died) and she really needs to work that through with a therapist instead of taking it out on us. I am thinking about either a fence or a row of narrow evergreens in the back and some crepe myrtles in the front. But those are projects for other springs, this spring is for flowers.
- Lisa Congdon on politics and social media. An awful lot of writers and artists I follow have had to write similar things. I know I am heartened by seeing people whose work I admire speak out on things they’re passionate about even if I don’t agree with them. I look much more askance at the people who continue to promote their “personal brand” as if the world wasn’t on fire. “If you stand for nothing, Burr, what’ll you fall for?”
- Ancient Aboriginal stories preserve history of a rise in sea level This is so coolthe HMS Terror and Erebus and reminds me of how the Inuit who lived around King William Island knew about where were and white people refused to believe that they would know such a thing.
- This is an interesting pair of articles and I’m still thinking about them both:
- Nazis, No Platforming, and the Failure of Free Speech Stephanie Zvan calls out what “listen to both sides” arguments really are: free speech fetishism.
- Xenu’s Paradox: The Fiction of L. Ron Hubbard and the Making of Scientology According to this, L. Ron didn’t even like science fiction. Huh.
- Carrie Jenkins makes the philosophical case for polyamory.
- How Beyoncé invented mediocrity… Fair warning, this essay’s thesis doesn’t really become clear until about halfway through.
- Complicated clocks and automatons! So cool!
- Evangelical cinema kicked off with a batshit budget franchise about the Rapture
- Instructions for Your New Hiding Desk
- Obligatory links about the American Trashfire (I’m trying to keep these to a minimum!):
I also wanted to mention that I’ve reconfigured my newsletter–instead of weekly, I’m now sending them monthly. If you’re interested, here’s the sign up link.