Some random things I think are cool.

I’m home sick (screw you, virus) and thought I’d post some writing inspiration/things I just think are cool. I imagine all of these will eventually make it into my writing in one way or another.

The Teddy Girls
Photo by Ken Russell
In a short, photo-heavy article on the “The Forgotten 1950s Girl Gangs,” MessyNessy looks at the Teddy Girls, a British subculture from the 50s “characterized by an unlikely style of dress inspired by Edwardian dandies fused with American rock’n roll.” I love every single one of these photos.

Nepalese Honey Gatherers
Photo by Andrew Newey
“Twice each year, the Gurung tribespeople of Central Nepal risk their lives collecting wild honey from the world’s largest hives high up on Himalayan cliffs.” How is this not the most beautiful thing ever? I already know exactly where and why this will be in one of my novels.

All of Andrew Newey’s photography is really stunning.

Video about Astronaut Ronald McNair

Ronald McNair was one of the seven astronauts killed when the Challenger shuttle blew up just after take off. I clearly remember this happening (yeah I’m old, get off my lawn!). McNair’s story as told by his brother, Carl, in this short video made me cry all the tears. Also, shout out to StoryCorps that recorded this – one of my favorite ongoing ethnology projects.

Azerbaijani Dance

WTF, this is…amazing. Give it a minute to pick up.

Illusion Songs

This Tumblr is a collection of auditory illusions that are just mind blowing. The internet has introduced me to many things I didn’t even know I love until I found it on the interweb. This tumblr features everything from North Carolina Hollerin, Russian panpipes, beatboxing, classical composers, and Tuareg vocalists.

Behold – Octopuses!!! (My previously unknown phobia.)
Though the internet has introduced me to many wonderful things, it has also introduced me to a new phobia that I doubt I would have ever even known about were it not for my exposure via the internet.


Blog Around: Some random things on the internet

First, some stuff on race, religion, and the Middle East
Click here to watch journalist Mehdi Hasan deliver a rollicking defense of the proposition “Islam Is a Peaceful Religion.”

The CIA acknowledged that they played a role in dismantling the democratically elected government of Iran in 1953. Seriously, every year in my history of globalization class, when I told students we helped to overthrow a democracy in the middle east basically because they were going to kick out US and British oil companies, many students simply refused to believe it could possibly be true.

Finally, Syria:

There is a lot going on in Syria and I’m trying to stay on top of it all. Right now the UN has sent in inspectors to try and determine who, exactly, is using chemical weapons. Most signs point to the Assad regime, though I do think there are still questions. No one doubts that Assad is a terrible despot who is shelling his people to hell and back. But, for me, there are very legitimate questions about the appropriate US response. The US media and political leadership seem to be gearing up for an air strike but I have very strong reservations about such a thing. Here’s a concise argument about why airstrikes probably won’t work.

Now some gender stuff:

Debate about the women’s “opt out revolution” are heating up on the internet again and I think this response is an important one.  “For nearly all women, from upper middle-class to poor, the ‘choice’ of whether to work is not a choice, but an economic bargain struck out of fear and necessity.”

Please note, this is what a feminist looks like!

Finally some general silly/geeky/interesting things:

Benedict Cumberbach is awesome.

Octopuses are interesting!

Last but not least, the deadline to submit to the anthology Long Hidden is upon us.  Only a few more days to complete your short story written from the margins of history.