Author: jenniestoltz (Page 3 of 15)

Seven Things I Love (4-4-2022)

  1. 1. This Artist – I read about the Sir John Soane Museum on Atlas Obscura and have wanted to go ever since. I mean, any museum choked full of memorabilia and curiosities is in my wheelhouse. But despite my desire and numerous trips to London, I have yet to managed to visit.

Before I even knew that one of Gretchen Scherer’s paintings was a room in the Soane Museum, I was drawn to her work. I would love to see them in person – according to the Hyperallergic article, even though she has meticulously recreated the room down to minute details, she added a few details to get across personal messages. Those need to be seen in larger versions of the image to be visible.

Still, they are lovely. The square piece in the slideshow below is called “Sir John Soane’s Museum, Library and Dining Room” and it is the largest piece in her exhibit at Monya Rowe Gallery.

[Found on Hyperallergic]

2. This Hero – The Soldier who told the Russian warship to “Go Fuck Yourself” and then was captured along with a dozen of his fellow Ukrainian Soldiers has been released and received a medal for his bravery.

3. This Tea – a friend of mine brought me some of this tea when she came over for lunch last week – WOW!!! I have been looking for a herbal tea that I can drink that wouldn’t require me to add a ton of sweetener. And since I’m not using artificial sweetener anymore that basically means honey or raw sugar or agave nectar.

This fits the bill, in fact you won’t need any sweetener at all. And when it says it’s naturally sweet it’s completely true. There is no fake sugar in here and yet it’s still rather sweet. Well, sweet and spicy.

I still love a good cuppa (black tea with milk and sugar) but it’s really nice to have a second option now.

[Found by my friend Edell – thanks E!]

4. This Drug Disposal Program – When I first ran across this (can’t remember when or where) I decided to request the free pouch just for the heck of it.

I used to not have to worry at all about drug disposal because the municipality where I worked had a drop box right in the village hall where you could drop off meds (both prescription and OTC.)

I think a lot of people don’t realize how bad it is to toss medications. It’s obviously really, REALLY bad to put them down the drain or in the toilet, but it’s also bad to put them in the garbage. Eventually the containers could break open or decompose and the medications could get into the groundwater – it’s really no different than putting them down the drain/toilet.

That is why proper disposal is so important. I got rid of most of my extra meds right before I retired but over the past three years I’ve managed to accumulate some expired pharmaceuticals. When I decided I finally had enough I ripped open the package I received from Deterra.

I had thought that the package was going to be a pouch where you could mail in your meds for disposal. Oh no. This was SO EASY. All you need to do is take all the medications out of the bottles, rip open the top of the pouch, drop them all in, fill the pouch about half full with water, water 30 seconds, close the pouch (shake it a little to get the water/stuff inside to mix up with all the pills) and then TOSS IT IN THE TRASH!

The stuff in the pouch makes the pills safe for the environment. You can read more about it and order a free pouch here.

5. This Seinfeld Clip – This is from 1995. Ukrainians have always been bad ass.

6. This Career – I want to be a personal librarian! I suppose to do this you have to live in a place where there are a lot of rich people.

Private Librarian, Christy Shannon Smirl

[Found on Los Angeles Daily News]

7. This Photo from the 1980s – Cyndi Lauper playing miniature golf with Pee Wee Herman. This says all that needs to be said about the ’80s and it’s why it’ll always be my favorite decade.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Art by Rick Frausto

Seven Things I Love (3-28-2022)

Before I get started, have you watched season two of Bridgerton (Netflix) yet? Are you watching season two of Sanditon (PBS)? Also, check out Minx if you have (HBOMax).

Okay, here we go…

  1. These Chicken Sweaters – They’re just too freaking cute for words.

I read this article about these adorable sweater-wearing chickens. Ann and Nicola Congdon, a mother and daughter team in CORNWALL rescue hens raised in captivity that are kept only indoors. Hens confined indoors sometimes don’t grow enough feathers to keep them warm in colder outdoor weather. Thus the tiny sweaters.

The photos of the brightly-colored knit creations on their clucking friends went viral and farmers from around the world started requesting to buy them. Instead of trying to make a profit, the Congdons donate the money to an AIDS orphanage in South Africa. Could these two be better role models?

And if you’d like to see some wonderful photographs of non-sweater-clad poultry, check these out.

[Found on Little Things]

2. This Graphic – I love this graphic because it’s very close to how I tell a story. I don’t think I go off on as many tangents. And there’s a reason I like to include a lot of details (and it has to do with my wanting to make stories both entertaining and informative. Still, I feel better knowing I’m not alone. Frankly, I’m tired of being told I’m too wordy.

3. This Promo – Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeak. Mark your calendars – June 28th can’t come soon enough!!!

If you haven’t seen ‘Only Murders in the Building’ yet, you are missing something truly wonderful. It would be worth subscribing to Hulu just for this show. Subscribe for a month, watch it and then unsubscribe. You will not be disappointed.

[Found on Pure Wow]

4. These Synchronized “Swimmers” – this is GENIUS and the boys nail it.

This is still my favorite synchronized swimming scene though,

5. This Scottish Paper Artist – Located in Edinburgh, Charles Young creates marvelous miniature buildings and other miscellaneous items (such as fountains, vehicles and rides for a circus) to go in the small towns he manufactures.

His design style tends to lean toward the first half of the 20th century with the exception of his recreation of a few historic landmarks. His work reminds me a lot of a Wes Anderson movie set. What do you think?

[Found on Present & Correct]

6. These Sisters – Meet 100-year-old Frances Kompus, 102-year-old Lucy Pochop and 104-year-old Julia Kopriva. These three sisters recently celebrated youngest sister Frances’s centennial birthday. It’s rare enough for a person to celebrate their 100th birthday (though it’s becoming a little less common) but it’s extremely rare for someone to be able to share the celebration with their elder siblings!

[Found on My Modern Met]

7. This Unofficial Guide Dog – Sterling, a Siberian Husky, was diagnosed with glaucoma nearly in 2018. His family tried to delay it by getting him special goggles to protect his eyes, but he’s pretty much lost all his eyesight.

Walker, an Alaskan Malamute was adopted by the family around the same time as Sterling (about a year apart) and the two dogs have become extremely close. So, as Sterling began needing more help, Walker started stepping in to help. Amazing!

[Also found on My Modern Met]

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (3-21-2022)

  1. 1. This Postage Stamp – There have been many examples of bravery by the Ukrainian people but this particular instance stands out.

If you haven’t heard the story of the Ukrainian soldiers of Snake Island, you can read about it here, and you can hear the audio here.

[Found on My Modern Met]

2. This GoFundMe – Mila Kunis was born in Chernivtsi, Ukraine. Even though she’s lived most of her life in America and is now an America citizen, her Ukrainian heritage is near and dear to her heart. So when the war broke out, Kunis and her husband Ashton Kutcher knew that they had to do something to help. They started a GoFundMe with the plan that they would match up to $3,000,000. Never did they expect the fundraiser to reach $35 million (the current amount)!

This is the message of thanks they posted.

They also have been working with Airbnb to find housing for the refugees.

Ukrainian President Zelensky called them (via Zoom) to thank them personally for their efforts. (The man must never sleep.)

[Found on the Los Angeles Times]

3. These Pep Talks – An art teacher at West Side Elementary in Healdsburg, California thought it would be a fun project for her class to create a hotline with the kids offering upbeat and happy messages. She figured they’d get a few calls, mostly from friends and family members.

In her wildest dreams she didn’t expect this. It’s grown from a few hundred calls a day to over ten thousand calls AN HOUR. They too have done a GoFundMe to raise money to keep the hotline running.

If you don’t think that it has value, give it a call – 707-998-8410.
You’ll be a believer in no time.

[Found on the The Daily Show & Good News Network]

4. This Southeast Wisconsin Creamery – I love goat milk products – goat cheese, goat butter, goat.. well, that’s pretty much it. I was at this lovely little boucherie (butcher)/cafe in the Third Ward (Milwaukee) called Bavette’s a month or so ago and after having a yummy lunch I picked up a few things from the shop area. One of them was this goat cheese. It was the best damned goat cheese I’ve ever had!

Now, it’s not really that far for me to get down to the Third Ward, about 15 minutes maybe, but finding parking down there can be a bugger and honestly, trying to do all that rigamarole for a container of goat cheese is a bit much. I looked up the Blakesville Creamery to see if maybe their products were carried someplace a little closer to my house and discovered (a) they are located in Port Washington (which is almost the same distance as the Third Ward) but (b) they SHIP!!! I ordered my first package of cheeses and I’m in heaven.

The great thing is that their cheeses have a shelf life of about 4 to 6 weeks, so you can really stock up. And they don’t have to stay completely cold either – they age them in 55 degrees.

I say try it, you’ll like it!

5. This Comedian – I saw Catherine Cohen on Late Night with Seth Meyers last week and thought she was a hoot. She was promoting her new comedy special on Netflix and so I thought to myself, I need to make a mental note to watch that. Now normally when I make a “mental note” the likelihood that the task/idea/whatever will ever be followed up on is nearly zero but for some reason this one stuck. I not only managed to remember her name but I remembered that it was on Netflix as well. I watched it and, for the most part, I give it two energetic thumbs up. The songs are most definitely my favorite parts.

6. This To-Do List The Feminist To-Do List is bi-weekly e-newsletter from the United States of Women. It includes small tasks you can do in the fight for equality, information about feminist achievements, and things that the USOW generally thinks that we feminists would find interesting. It’s just the right amount of info and frequency. You can sign up for it here.

The United States of Women has a second newsletter you can sign up for at the same time called ‘Joy is Resistance.’ This newsletter is sent out weekly to honor and uplift during Heritage Months (periods within the year that are designated to celebrate and acknowledge various ethnic and marginalized groups.)

[Found by my good friend Ann L.]

7. These New Quarters – I got my first proof set! The first quarters with American women. Aren’t they gorgeous?

Top Row – Maya Angelou (American poet, memoirist, and civil rights activist), Dr. Sally Ride (Astronaut and physicist, first American woman in space), Anna May Wong (Actress, first Chinese American Hollywood movie star)

Bottom Row – Nina Otero-Warren (Woman’s Suffrage Movement Leader, educator, and politician), Wilma Mankiller (Native American activist, social worker, community developer and the first woman elected to serve as Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation)

They chose the five women from over 11,000 names submitted via a portal set up by the National Women’s History Museum. The plan is to release up to 5 coins each year through 2025. I signed up to automatically receive new American Women Quarters proof sets from the U.S. Mint.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (3-14-2022)

  1. 1. This Bust of an Unidentified Black Slave by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux – Housed at The Met Museum, the bust is one of only two known versions carved in marble. It is a powerful representation of the brutality that people of color endured and how they responded with fortitude and strength.

“Created twenty years after the abolition of slavery in the French colonies (1848), the sculpture was debuted in Paris in 1869 under the title Négresse, a term that reinforces the fallacy of human difference based on skin color. The subject’s resisting pose, defiant expression, and accompanying inscription – ‘Pourquoi Naître Esclave!’ (Why Born Enslaved!) – convey an antislavery message. However, the bust also perpetuates a Western tradition of representation that long saw the Black figure as inseparable from the ropes and chains of enslavement.” 

From the Met Museum website

2. This Short Film Created by Apple (so admittedly it’s one long ad) – this short film is very well done. You will actually become invested in what happens to these four people, you’ll find yourself rooting for them. I also liked that they are basically addressing a “Great Resignation” issue. (Though in reality, haven’t difficult bosses who don’t appreciate their employees and overwork them; and employees who dream of going off and making it on their own, haven’t these things been around forever? What was the tipping point?)

[Found on Inc.com]

3. This Nautical Discovery – This is HUGE. I have been slightly (okay, not slightly) obsessed with the history of Ernest Shackleton’s expedition on the Endurance for decades. I think the main reason for my being drawn to their story is because rarely do you hear about such a disaster where every single person survives.

Here’s what happened. The Endurance became lodged in ice and began to sink. This took a long time and they were able to get a lot of things they needed off the ship. Eventually it was crushed and sank completely. The crew were stuck on the Antarctic ice for about 17 MONTHS.

The men finally were rescued after Shackleton and a group of five men made an arduous trek 750 miles in a small boat to a British-owned island called South Georgia.

The men documented their 17 months with photography, which is another reason why the story is so interesting. Here are some newly restored photos. And here are some photos from negatives discovered in the ice. And more photos here. You can just keep finding more and more.

[Found on BBC]

4. This Reunion – Filmed on the Polish-Ukrainian border, photographer David Melero Pena caught the reunion of a father with his young daughter.

According to the Newsweek article where I found the video, the translation of the post’s caption is:

“The reunion…destroyed me while editing photos and video. I just have no words.”

[Found on Newsweek]

5. This “Witch” – On Sunday Emma Watson was the presenter for “Outstanding British Film” at the BAFTAs.

Rebel Wilson introduced her and joked, “Here to present the next award is Emma Watson. She calls herself a feminist, but we all know she’s a witch.” (Who wouldn’t love that introduction?!?!)

When Emma Watson got to the podium she said, “I’m here for all of the witches by the way.”

Most people recognized that this was a slight snub at J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books, the series that made Emma a superstar.

For those of you who haven’t heard about the controversy surrounding Rowling, she has made some anti-trans comments in the past and has been accused of having written an transphobic mystery novel,

[Found on Pink News and Mashable]

6. This State’s Legislation on College Tuition – OMG, NEW MEXICO rocks!

Legislation was signed into law on March 4, 2022 by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham that will make college free for students who choose to go to public universities!

From the article:

On March 4, 2022, New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed into law the New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship Act after it passed both state legislative houses. The law allots $75 million to a fund of scholarships. This will expand scholarship coverage from 10,000 to 35,000 students in the coming fall. An award of tuition and fees is coordinated in partnership with the public or tribal participating college. Almost any New Mexico resident qualifies, including continuing and part-time students. Students must maintain a minimum of six credit hours and a grade point average of at least 2.5 during their time in school.

[Found on My Modern Met]

7. This Letter – I love this SO MUCH. The letter is wonderful (the life of a public service employee!) and no one could read this aloud better than Keegan Michael Key.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (3-7-2022)

Tuesday is International Women’s Day
CELEBRATE accordingly!!!

  1. 1. This Ukrainian Artist’s Work – Maria Prymachenko’s artwork are cheery and colorful but some of the pieces are darker, which is not surprising considering what the Ukrainian people have been through over the past decades.

[Found on Kottke.org]

  1. 2. This Website – The V&A Museum kept quite busy in 2020 and 2021, and through social media and online activities they kept their patrons informed and engaged during the pandemic. I follow them on Facebook and get their newsletter but somehow I missed this.
  2. Luckily a friend of mine’s daughter is dressing up as Marie Antoinette for school and while I was looking for this picture to show both of them I found this fun page.

What we have is an interactive site that allows you to create your very own Marie Antoinette style wig! You can make it as small or as LARGE as you like (I discovered that depending upon the way you swoop you can even create braids). After you’ve made your wig you can decorate it with a various feathers, flowers, pendants, and other items (note the ship). Last, but not least, you can powder it to your heart’s content (there are some lovely colors to choose from.)

Here’s one of my creations

I always love learning new things, especially history. This was particularly fun. Is seems the wigs got pretty out of control for a while. Men’s wigs were as big a deal as the women’s wigs.

[Found on Dazed Digital]

3. This Mom’s Sense of Humor – Kayla Marie Sullivan used her skills from when she was a reporter to convey the difficulties of parenting a two-year-old.
It’s H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S.

@kaylareporting

Now accepting donations for babysitters & or take out! Venmo: @Kayla-Sullivan-96 🤣 #NewsVoice #ToddlerMom #EveryKiss #newsvoice #YerAWizard #2022

♬ original sound – Kayla Marie Sullivan

4. This Historic Mystery Solved! I have loved the Venus of Willendorf (sometimes called the Woman of Willendorf) since the first time I saw it. I mean, what’s not to love – they worshiped a voluptuous babe!

The Venus is estimated to be around 30,000 years old and made from oolite limestone. It’s called the Venus of Willendorf because it was found in 1908, somewhere close to the banks of the Danube River near Willendorf, Austria. But they’ve never know her origin.

Researchers led by Gerhard Weber, an evolutionary anthropologist at the University of Vienna, believe they have matched the figurine’s limestone with a location near Lake Garda in northern Italy, revealing the likely origin of “one of the most famous signs of early modern human symbolic behavior,” according to a study published on Monday in Scientific Reports

The new research suggests that the crafters of this iconic object, a hunter-gatherer culture known as the Gravettian people, traveled hundreds of miles across the treacherous landscape of Europe before the last ice age, though the team noted that it’s unclear what might have prompted such a journey. 

From “Scientists Solve 30,000-Year-Old ‘Venus’ Statue Mystery, Study Says” by Becky Ferreira; March 1, 2022; Vice-motherboard

[Found on VICE]

5. This Crowd-Sourced History Project – Charles Dickens is well-known for his literary genius but one lesser known element of his life is that as a younger man he taught himself a form of shorthand using Thomas Gurney’s 18th century manual on Brachygraphy. The word Brachygraphy means “a system of writing using abbreviations or special characters” – in other words, shorthand.

There are several documents that Dickens wrote using brachygraphy that scholars have been struggling to decipher, some with success. But the one that has been most elusive is the Tavistock letter.

Two Dickensian scholars, Claire Wood of the University of Leicester, and Hugo Bowles of the University of Foggia, decided to create the Dickens Code Project in the hopes of getting assistance from puzzle experts and code breakers around the world. They ended up with sixteen full submissions, none of which were complete.

Shane Baggs, a computer technical support specialist from San Jose, California, won the overall contest, while a college student at the University of Virginia named Ken Cox was declared the runner-up.

Since then, Baggs and Cox have managed to finished deciphering nearly 70% of the letter, far more than they ever expected. You can see a line-by-line translation here.

Full page of the Tavistock letter.

6. This Inspiring Article – With all that is going on in the world we need some positivity and hope. Here ya go.

[Found on Harper’s Bazaar]

7. THIS Postmodern Jukebox Video – I was lucky enough to get to go to a REAL concert last week. I saw one of my favorite bands – Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox (PMJ). And man, I was not disappointed!

PMJ does covers of songs in a variety of styles, such as the roaring twenties, sixties girl group, swing, jazz, gospel, and “film noir.”

This video is one of the songs sung at the concert – you will recognize it right away. We didn’t have this many performers but some of them – like Tia Simone (wow), LaVance Colley (wow), and Olivia Kuper Harris (beautiful) – were there on Friday!

Click on the photo below to see the video.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (2-28-2022)

  1. 1. This Candle CompanyHarlem Candle Company creates luxury candles, diffusers, and room sprays using famous people and places in black history as inspiration. I haven’t received my order yet but I wanted to include this while it was still Black History Month.

I ordered a “Savoy” candle which has the following description:

The Savoy Ballroom was the soul of Harlem, and kept Lenox Avenue jumping for decades. It was a block long, dripping with glittering crystal chandeliers and an elegant marble staircase, and is known for having birthed the Lindy Hop.   The glamour and excitement of nights on that iconic dance floor are beautifully reflected with a luscious overture of blackcurrant, tart mandarin, crisp green apple and juicy pear evolving into a flirtatious floral heart of Lily of the Valley and jasmine petals. Sensual sandalwood and sheer musk bring warmth to perfectly balance this intoxicating blend.

Is that not heavenly? I’m hoping I’ll get the candle, light it, get into my comfy chair, close my eyes, and be transported back to the Savoy Ballroom of the ’20s. I hope I haven’t set my expectations too high for a scented candle (ha ha ha.)

Plus they’re beautiful.

2. This Custom LibraryJim Cardon, built this library as a gift for his brother! I mean, if this doesn’t warrant a ‘Brother of the Year‘ award I don’t know what would. He modeled it after the library in the movie ‘The Illusionist‘ (on of my favorites, the entire film is available for free on YouTube.)

Talk about book porn!

[Found on Core77]

3. This Lagoon in Australia – PINK! It’s my “signature color”. Is this not amazing? It’s called Hutt Lagoon and the color is from “the caroteinoid-producing algae, dunaliella salina – which is a source of beta-carotene; a food-colouring agent and a great source of Vitamin A.”

The photographer is from Russia and her name is Kristina Makeeva. She’s EXTREMELY talented. If click on her name ⬅ it’ll take you to her Instagram and you can see all her photos. They’ll blow you away.

[Found on My Modern Met]

4. These Knitters or “Yarn Bombers” – I love it if someone yarn bombed my mailbox. I know it doesn’t last forever but while it doesn’t last, it’s so wonderful!

5. This Wall – photo was taken at MOD GEN: a Modern General Store, in the Third Ward near downtown Milwaukee, one of my favorite shops. They have a wonderful selection of unique books, games, puzzles, stationary products, kitchen items, and well, things you won’t find anywhere else. Most importantly they have a fabulous selection of plants and succulents at the back of the store. If you haven’t been I’d suggest you check it out!

6. This Interview with Judi Dench, Graham Norton, Elton John, and John Bishop – I’m fairly certain I don’t need to explain who any of these people are except maybe the last. John Bishop is one of THE most popular comedians in Britain but if you are a Doctor Who fan you will recognize him from the current series as Dan Lewis.

Anyway, got this video from a friend (thanks Stasie!) and it is so wonderful, mostly because this is ME to a tee.

It actually reminds me of, I think it was my 15th high school reunion? I got there and ran into a friend of mine. I would have bet everything I had that she went to one of the other two high schools in Dubuque (where I grew up). I said to her, “Oh my god, what are you doing here!” I mean, I was glad to see her, just surprised. And she replied (obviously a little perplexed and miffed), “what do you mean, what am I doing here.?” She actually got pretty pissed at me because she thought I was joking around but the truth is, I couldn’t remember. I can’t remember much of anything from the past 55+ years except for little snippets here and there. And a lot of what I can remember is due to photos and mementoes I have.

Recently I found a treasure trove of documents – all sorts of certificates and papers from my youth. Going through them was truly a walk down memory lane but there were a few things that I absolutely did NOT remember doing.

For example, in 1978 and 1979 I was in the Annual Metropolitan Speech Contest In 1978 my category was “Choral Reading.” I do remember that. In 1979 my categories were “Prose” and “Pantomime.” I don’t remember ever doing pantomime, not once in my entire life. But here’s evidence in print.

7. These Ukranians – Honestly, I can’t imagine Americans fighting like this. Well, actually, the way I see it going in America if there was ever an attack like this – all the super wealthy would leave to wherever they needed to go to be safe and comfortable, the lower upper-class and upper-middle class would most likely die (except possibly for those who are POC and LGBTQ), and the lower middle class and lower class would be like the Ukrainians – we ain’t puttin’ up with no shit.

What do you think?

Anyway, these Ukrainians are KICKASS.

Okay, first this guy, who picked up a god-damned landmine and moved it off a road all the while continuing to hold his cigarette in his mouth – DAYUM!

Then there is this UNARMED woman, who told a Russian soldier to fill his pockets with the sunflower seeds she offered him so that when he died his body would grow flowers (at least then he’d be doing something good for the world).

Next is this Ukrainian man, who may be a little nuts but who single-handedly attempted to stop a convoy of Russian tanks.

And last but not least, the 13 extremely brave Ukrainians whose job it was to secure Snake Island (also called Zmiinyi Island) – when approached by a Russian battleship told them to “go fuck yourself” IN RUSSIAN before being blown up. They were initially all reported dead because there was no radio contact.

The good news is that the Ukrainians discovered they didn’t die. Hallelujah! The bad news is that after being able to repel two attacks by the Russians they eventually had to surrender due to a lack of ammunition. The Ukrainian soldiers are now being held Sevastopol, Crimea, which was documented on Russian State television.

Also, SNL did a cold opening with the Ukrainian Chorus of New York singing “A Prayer for Ukraine” and I get overwhelmed with emotion every time I watch it.


[EXTRA] ICYMI, John Mahoney was the guest host on SNL on Saturday. He joined the Five Timer’s Club and there’s a new epic musical sketch to go along with Diner Lobster (2018), Bodega Bathroom (2019), Airport Sushi (2020), and New York Musical (2020).

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (2-21-2022)

  1. 1. This Knitting Clock – I want one of these SOOOOOO badly. I’m not sure how great it would be for actually telling time but it knits a row a day so I think it could work more like a calendar. Either way it’s super fun!

At the end of the year you have about a 79 inch (2 meter) scarf. It’s incredibly brilliant. There’s also a grandfather clock version.

2. This Miniaturist – her attention to detail is truly mind boggling.

She also does these incredible replicas of television program* sets:

(*how much am I dating myself calling them “television programs”?)

3. This Guy Who Should Be Bound for Broadway – You have to watch it, that’s all I’ll say.

4. These Fashion Models – Can you image being at Milan Men’s Fashion Week and all of a sudden you see JEFF GOLDBLUM and KYLE MACLACHLAN strutting down the runway? Okay, I know, realistically, can any of us imagine ourselves even at the Milan Men’s Fashion Week. But still, these two men in their sixties can totally hold their own against the twenty-something models and I think that is fan-freaking-tastic! We need more 6o+ year-old fashion models!

Kyle MacLachlan & Jeff Goldblum at the Prada fashion show during Milan Men’s Fashion Week 2022 – photos by Daniele Venturelle (Getty Images)

5. This Black Woman in HistoryPauline E. Hopkins was an extraordinary woman: Author, Publisher, Editor, Singer, Activist, Lecturer, Hopkins wore many hats.

She was most likely the first black woman to write theatrical drama, detective stories, and a horror novel but never received recognition similar to that that white authors, even female white authors, received.

Pauline Elizabeth Hopkins was among America’s most influential magazine editors and feminists of the 1900s. She was an American novelist, journalist, playwright, historian, and editor. As a shareholder and editor, she sat at the helm of ‘The Colored American’ – the first monthly publication dedicated to African-American culture. She was ousted for being ‘too radical’. Hopkins is also considered a pioneer in her use of the romantic novel to explore social and racial themes.

from MessyNessyChic (Vol.DXCI)

A few of her books have been or are being reissued. Here’s one that is coming out in August that I absolutely want to get. It’s already available in other versions, if you don’t want to wait to read it, but I love the cover art on this…

Here’s the description from Bookshop.org:

A mixed-race Harvard medical student stumbles upon a hidden Ethiopian city, the inhabitants of which possess both advanced technologies and mystical powers.Long before Marvel Comics gave us Wakanda, a high-tech African country that has never been colonized, this 1903 novel gave readers Reuel Brigg –a mixed-race Harvard medical student, passing as white, who stumbles upon Telassar. In this long-hidden Ethiopian city, the wise, peaceful inhabitants of which possess both advanced technologies and mystical powers, Reuel discovers the incredible secret of his own birth. Now, he must decide whether to return to the life he’s built, and the woman he loves, back in America–or play a role in helping Telassar take its rightful place on the world stage. Considered one of the earliest articulations of Black internationalism, Of One Blood takes as its theme the notion that race is a social construct perpetuated by racists.

6. This Guy’s Commentary on Planes Landing at Heathrow During Storm EuniceBig Jet TV’s commentator, Jerry Dyers, is the best kind of British. His enthusiasm is infectious and you will find yourself rapt as you watch these planes in harrowing weather conditions. It may no longer be live but it doesn’t make it any less gripping (and in some parts truly entertaining) to see.

7. This Ruling from Colombia’s Highest Court – Today Colombia joined several other predominantly Catholic Latin American countries (and Cuba) in decriminalizing/legalizing abortion. Women in Colombia will now be able to receive abortions up to 24 weeks in safe facilities and doctors won’t have to fear about ramifications if they are put in a situation where they need to give an abortion to save the life of a mother or if they are asked to abort a fetus that resulted from rape or incest.

Ask you can imagine, there was much celebration.

People demonstrate in front of Colombia’s constitutional court against and in favour of removing abortion from the penal code, in Bogota, Colombia February 21, 2022. REUTERS/Luisa Gonzalez

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (2-14-2022)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

1. This Streaming Service – For me this is the best streaming service for one simple reason, your monthly “fee” is actually a donation to your LOCAL PBS station!

Simply download the PBS app on your smart TV or device – even if you don’t make the donation there is a lot you can watch for free but if you would like access to everything, including the newest Masterpiece programs, you are going to want PBS Passport, especially if you’ve cut the cable cord.

You can find out more here (scroll down.)

Currently I’ve been watching the new Around the World in Eighty Days .
It’s FANTASTIC!!! There is one more episode coming next week.

IBRAHIM KOMA as Passepartout, DAVID TENNANT as Phileas Fogg,
and LEONIE BENESCH as Abigail ‘Fix’ Fortescue

2. This Seven-Year-Old Girl – Isobel is going to go far in this world.

In case you don’t follow British politics, Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister, is in a bit of a sticky wicket. It was discovered that he had several social gatherings at No. 10 Downing Street during the 2020 and 2021 lockdowns.

“Partygate,” as it has been dubbed, has led to calls for his resignation not only from members of other political parties but from members of his own Conservative Party. And now the POLICE are investigating it. Quite a different response to bad behavior/corruption from a politician than what happens in the U.S., where a sitting president can instigate an insurrection and nearly every member of his party will stand by him.

Well, Little Isobel wouldn’t have it so she sent the PM a withering note. After all, if she had to miss her birthday parties then he should have to do the same! As she says – “follow the rulse!”

Here’s the letter –

Family photo obtained from BBC news.

3. This Embroidered Brooch – I can’t even. This artist is located in Russia, which doesn’t surprise me. Whenever I find truly stunning pieces on Etsy they always seem to be from Russia or Romania or someplace in Eastern Europe – probably because they are still passing on the skills I imagine.

4. This Tweet by Adidas – I had to go post a few comments on this. I LOVED it so much. Seeing real boobs – if I could have seen things like this or ads with women that were not stick skinny when I was a teen I would probably be a hell of a lot thinner now (and I certainly wouldn’t be so ashamed of the way I look.)

5. These Samantha Bee Videos on Book Banning – Well said Samatha! I think what we are going to find is that as soon as mid-term elections are over both CRT and book banning are going to disappear {poof} and no longer be an issue, because right now Neo-conservatives are using these issues to get votes. Because they have no actual platforms or policies of their own that would make anyone want to vote for them, and they know that. The only way they can win is to demonize their opponents.

6. This Turkish Man Who Replanted a Forest – Hikmet Kaya started his career in forest management in 1979 in a town called Sinop. When he retired 19 years later, he and his team had brought in and planted 30 MILLION saplings! Over the past few decades he’s been able to see the results of their efforts. Incredible.

Unfortunately, as has been the case in so many places in the world, there has been a reduction in tree coverage in Turkey over the past twenty years or so – the major cause is deforestation. Hopefully the Turkish people can get that evil, autocratic president out so they have a chance at getting legislation passed that is best for the people of their country.

Hikmet Kaya shows a photo of what the landscape looked like over 40 years ago when he began working on the forestation project with the help of some colleagues and people from his village.

7. This Meme – Love every single one of them!

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Divider-2.png

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (2-7-22)

1. This Map of Great British TV Shows – Created by Tim Ritz, fans of British television will love this map. It also has a cute backstory:

From Tim Ritz’s website:

One day my wife asked me to make a little sketch of the UK so she could envision where some of the cities depicted in our favorite shows are located. Then she said “You should do a really good version of this”, so that’s what I set out to do.

Then it got picked up by the Daily Mail, The Atlantic, Radio Times, The Evening Standard, and generally around the internet.

Click on the map below to go to a high-res (larger) version of the map that you can actually read.

2. This Art Therapy Practice, Zentangle – A friend of mine introduced me to this a few weeks ago and I’m a little obsessed. The purpose is primarily to both inspire creativity and allow for relaxation.

I’m not so sure I find it relaxing… yet.

Here’s the first one I tried (I’m doing kid’s level projects right now – as a person who was a children’s librarian for about 12 years I’ve found the best starting place is always kid’s level.)

And here’s my first attempt.

3. These New SeriesAfterparty & Murderville – If you are in a funk because ‘Only Murders in the Building’ is on hiatus then check out these two new shows.

Afterparty (AppleTV) is probably my favorite of the two. The show starts out with someone having been murdered and then each episode is a replay of the evening told from the point-of-view of the different guests at an after party that was held following a high school reunion. At first you think you really hate all the characters or that they are just weird as hell but after they have their episode, if you’re like me, you will find yourself rooting for all of them and hoping that none of them are the murderer.

(l. to r.) SAM RICHARDSON as Aniq, BEN SCHWARTZ as Yasper, TIFFANY HADDISH as Detective Dancer, TIYA SIRCAR as Jennifer #1, KELVIN YU as Ned, ILANA GLASER as Chelsea, ZOE CHAO as Zoe, and IKE BARINHOLTZ as Brett

Murderville (Netflix) – this series is unique. Here’s the premise – a grizzled detective named Terry Seattle (played by Will Arnett) lost his partner years ago. Since then he has gone through a string of new partners, the latest being celebrities, namely Conan O’Brian, Marshawn Lynch, Kumail Nanjiani, Sharon Stone, Ken Jeong, and Annie Murphy – all playing themselves. The new “partners” each have to solve a crime (they really don’t know who’s done it!) The celebrities also don’t have scripts.

It’s very funny. I’m amazed at how the suspects are able to keep straight faces. And Arnett does some fabulous ad-libbing. I hope they do more episodes. I binged all six in a few hours.

WILL ARNETT as Detective Terry Seattle and CONAN O’BRIEN as Conan O’Brien

4. This 8-WEEK OLD Baby Girl Telling Her Parents “I Love You” – And if you think this is a trick or they are really good actors, nope. Here’s an article in the Greenville News and Anderson Cooper covered it on CNN’s The Goods. AMAZING! I’ve watched it about a dozen times… so far.

5. These Results for a Contest Held by the Minnesota DOT – People can be SO CLEVER!!! I think we can all agree on which one is the best name.

The results are in and Minnesota has eight newly named snowplows.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation announced the results of its second annual “Name a Snowplow” contest, which attracted hundreds of pun-tastic submissions.

Here are the winners, and the districts in which they’ll be operating:

Betty Whiteout – District 8 (SW Minnesota)

Ctrl Salt Delete – District 7 (SW Minnesota)

The Big Leplowski – District 4 (West-Central Minnesota)

Plowasaurus Rex – Metro District 

Scoop Dogg – District 3 (Central Minnesota)

Blizzard of Oz – District 2 (NW Minnesota)

No More Mr. Ice Guy – District 1 (NE Minnesota)

Edward Blizzardhands – District 6 (SE Minnesota)

6. These Unexpected Heroes in the Fight Against Censorship – I think my first introduction to Furries was on an episode of NCIS. And of course, as with everything that people don’t understand, it was made out to be silly and kinky.

Skipping to a different topic, have you heard about this batshit crazy mayor in Mississippi who decided (unilaterally I might add) that he was going to withhold the public library’s funds ($110,000) unless the director removed all the LGBTQ books???

One would think that sanity would prevail – that when the rest of the board found out they would say, no, we can’t do that. Or when the municipal attorney counseled them he/she would say – um, that is against the ordinances/statutes but sadly that is not what happened. In fact, after the board met the entire board not only backed up the batshit crazy mayor but the attorney said that it was kosher.

What’s a library director to do? Well, she said up a GoFundMe (or at least the library version of one.) And that’s where I get back to the Furries. One Furry saw what had happened and was outraged (for good reason) and shared the fund-raiser and it got shared and shared and shared until….

The library is almost to $99,000 on it’s Library Fundraising page!!! Consider making a donation. I did! (Click on the photo below for the full story.)

7. This Video Called ‘Epic Time with Alan Rickman’ – I haven’t thought about this in a while but a friend of mine (Hi Stasie) posted something on FB that made me think of it so I thought I’d put in in my blog this week. Damn, I miss Alan Rickman.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Bye Bye, Spotify

In this corner, weighing in at 165 pounds, we have Hall of Famer, Grammy winning Neil Young, clocking in at a spry 76 years old.

And in this corner, weighing 194 pounds and clocking in at a sturdy 54, we have Joe Rogan, backed by his 11 million anti-vax Spotify listeners.

It was a David and Goliath moment to be sure and Goliath was the victor.

Wait, that’s not the way it’s supposed to work. God damned Spotify.

But here they come, over the hills, like the calvary in an old politically incorrect western who ride in at the last minute. Only this calvary are canceling their accounts in droves along with a few other big name artists who have joined Neil Young and asked to have their music removed from the Music behemoth.

Joe Rogan must have been a little concerned about his image taking a hit because he “apologized” and said that he would have more mainstream people on his show. Then four hours later he promptly posted more misinformation on Twitter. Yeah, he’s a twat.

If you want to show your support for Neil Young, along with Joni Mitchell, Nils Lofgren, Brene Brown, Wendy Zukerman & Blythe Terrell, India Arie, David Crosby, Graham Nash, Stephen Stills (aka Crosby, Stills & Nash), Mary Trump and Roxane Gay here’s what you can do….

“CANCEL” YOUR SPOTIFY ACCOUNT!

Since I’ve already done so myself I thought I’d give you a few tips.

First off, I put “cancel” in quotation marks because you can’t actually cancel your account. What you can is change your plan from a paid plan to the free one.

To do this

1. Log into Spotify
2. Click on your name in the top right corner and choose Account
3. Choose the Available Plans tab
4. Select the Change Plans button
5. Choose the free plan, they will make you confirm it like three times

They give you an opportunity to tell them WHY you are changing to the free plan. I said it was because I support Neil Young and that Spotify isn’t doing enough to stop the spread of misinformation.

Spotify is pretty shitty for not letting people delete their accounts but at least this way they won’t be getting your money.

There are other streaming services you can use instead of Spotify – Apple Music, Pandora, Amazon Music, YouTube Music, etc.. Here’s a list of options. Admittedly, I don’t think any of them have everything Spotify does (which is why it has become the most popular service), but you need to make the decision – which is more important, bells & whistles or your principles?

Before I cancelled my account I hesitated because I had put so much work into creating my playlists. Then I found out I could easily transfer my playlists and changed from Spotify in the flash of an eye.

Turns out there’s an app for that!

I chose Songshift but there are other options that most likely work equally well. I chose this particular app because I’ll be able to use it to share playlists with people even after I’m done transferring my playlists from Spotify – which makes the investment worthwhile (I’ll explain in a moment). AND if by some miracle, if Spotify does a huge overhaul in how it runs its company, I can easily move my playlists back.

Now, if you don’t have a lot of playlists you could probably just use the free version of Songshift but I had about 25 of them so I could to subscribe. Subscription (I think it’s $4.99/month which I can cancel at any time) gives me the ability to transfer multiple playlists at one time. Otherwise it will only do one at a time. So, like I said, if you have 5 or 6, the free version will probably be fine, much more than 8 or 9 and you’re probably going to want to make the investment, at least for one month.

It also gives me the ability to share playlists with anyone on multiple music streaming services – Pandora, Amazon Music, Apple Music, just to name a few. I’m curious to see how that works.

Anyway, transferring is super easy – you sign in to both your Spotify account and whatever new music streaming service you’ve chosen then you selection one service as the one you are transferring from and one that you are transferring to and that you choose which playlists you want to transfer. (Like I mentioned, you need the premium version if you want to do more than one at a time.)

It wills start the process and look for matches. A lot of the songs will match without problems but some of them you will need to approve and some of them you may need to help find matches for. You can choose to ignore songs that your new service can’t find a match for if you don’t want to spend the time looking.

Once all the songs have matches you hit the “Confirm Matches” button…

Once it has “shifted” all the songs you will see that it has finished and you need to hit the “Continue” button.

After that there’s one more button to hit and you’re finished with the process.

I moved to Apple Music because I used iTunes for so many years. I had a bunch of playlists there already so I merged the duplicate playlists together. (More decluttering!)

Hope this helps those of you who want to drop Spotify but have been hesitating.

Do it! You’ll feel better. And remember, Spotify is not a music company, it’s the Netflix of audio.

Addendum (2-2-22)

A friend of mine (thanks Ann!) shared this post with me. If you are having a hard time making a decision on which music platform to go with this may help you out…

I wanted to make sure I was reading this correctly. Basically it’s saying:
if P!nk had a song streaming on Apple Music, Spotify, and YouTube Music, the song would have to be streamed 128 times on Apple Music for her to earn a dollar, the song would have to be streamed 315 times on Spotify for her to earn a dollar, and the song would have to be streamed a whoppin’ 1,250 times on YouTube Music for her to earn that same dollar.

I’m not familiar with Tidal Music and I didn’t even know Napster was still around but seems to me that, of the options I was considering, Apple Music is the best deal for musicians. I’d definitely avoid YouTube Music and Pandora.

And if you are still hesitating, here’s one last article to read.

Oops, for real, now this is the last article. It seems that India.Arie left Spotify because Rogan used the N-word 24 times.

« Older posts Newer posts »