1. These KN95 Masks – I’m sure you’ve heard all the new recommendations saying cloth masks aren’t very good anymore and that we should all be wearing N95 or KN95 masks now. Still, I’ve hesitated to purchase new masks for a couple of reasons.
After all, I already own about two dozen beautiful cloth masks. (I particularly love the embroidered ones I found). You can’t really get N95 or KN95 masks that look nice. Another reason – there are too many masks to choose from and the ones that I know are good (not counterfeit) have been sold out – argh! A third reason (and the one that is the most important) all these disposable masks are ending up in landfills and that’s making me catatonic. I’m trying very hard not to make my footprint any larger than it already is.
That’s why, when I read about how VIDA masks includes a prepaid shipping label so that you can return your used masks so they can properly recycle them, I promptly placed an order.
Full disclosure, they haven’t arrived yet, but since ordering them I’ve seen the VIDA masks show up on many different recommended masks lists so I’m thinking they must be pretty good.
2. This Piece of Art by Argentinian-American Artist Cecilia Lueza – a friend of mine reposted this along with the poem below.
“Once upon a time, when women were birds, there was the simple understanding that to sing at dawn and to sing at dusk was to heal the the world through joy. The birds still remember what we have forgotten. that the world is meant to be celebrated.
From ‘When Women Were Birds: Fifty-four Variations on Voice‘ by Terry Tempest Williams
[Thanks Edell (I think it was Edell!)]
3. This Online Game – Last week I started seeing loads of people posting images of these grey, gold, and green blocks:
Initially, I thought the pictures were of some sort of flag or social awareness campaign (obviously I didn’t look at them very carefully.) But then I noticed on one friends post the hashtag WORDLE. After a quick Google search I found out it is an online word game! LOVE me a good word game. Sooooo now I’m completely addicted. The great thing about this online game though is there is only one posted per day so you won’t end up wasting hours playing it.
My best score to date has been the game above on the right – got it in three tries!
If you want to know more about Wordle you can read this article.
4. This GENIUS List of “100 Ways to Slightly Improve Your Life Without Really Trying“ – Modified from a list originally published in January of 2000 (that’s 22 years ago, can you believe it?!?) this contains simple suggstions such as “Mute or leave a WhatsApp group chat” (I’ve been turning off notifications for group texts, kind of the same thing) or “Don’t have Twitter on your phone.”
This is from a British newspaper so you’ll need to Americanize a few of the items. For example, #51 says to write politely to your MP, in America you will want to write politely to your legislator. Another, #63 says “Volunteer” and then lists a UK URL which provides many opportunities for civic engagement. There isn’t a comparable site in the US but I found this article about civic engagement from 2020 that is excellent.
5. This Graphic Illustrator – Cassandra Calin draws cartoons that show the trials and tribulations that women face in their day-to-day life and she’s a hoot!
6. This Video on the Four Levels of Omelets – Fantastic! It turns out this “4 Levels” thing is a series. I plan on watching the lobster roll one once I have omelets mastered. I learned SO MUCH from watching this one video. After the amateur cook, the amateur chef, and the professional chef make their omelets, a person from Epicurious explains what was was done right and what was done wrong and tells you how to make a fourth level (perfect) omelet.
7. These Islands – the Faroe Islands are an autonomous territory of Denmark located about 200 miles northwest of Scotland.
1. This VACCINATED Menopausal Broad – pardon my hair, I forgot to fix it before the photo. You can’t see it but I’m both a little teary-eyed and overjoyed.
Not surprisingly, I’ve been reading everything I can on the vaccines and post-vaccine life and I found this excellent article in the Washington Post. WashPo has a paywall, so you may not be able to read it but here’s my favorite part, where the authors, Emily Heil and Tim Carman, talk about keeping a coronavirus budget. I think it’s a brilliant idea:
“There’s no such thing as zero risk, and nothing is 100 percent risky,” says Leana Wen, a visiting professor of health policy and management at the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health and contributing columnist at The Washington Post. “It’s a spectrum.” She has long urged people to think about their risks as expenditures from a “coronavirus budget,” and says the budgets of those who have been vaccinated just went way up. “You still have to think about how to spend it, and if your priority is seeing grandchildren and going to church, then maybe you’re not going to restaurants all that often.”
With encouraging headlines, springlike temperatures and our collective covid fatigue at an all-time high, it might be tempting to throw caution — and another round of takeout — to the wind. But experts agree that now is not the time to lower your guard, but instead to maintain your vigilance so we can return to something like normal by the fall.
2. This Photograph of the Crystal Palace Dinosaurs – I became obsessed with the Crystal Palace dinosaurs after reading the children’s book ‘The Dinosaurs of Waterhouse Hawkins‘ by Barbara Kerley (illustrated by Brian Selznick). The book won a Caldecott Honor Medal in 2002 . I was still a Children’s Librarian at that time. It has everything I loved – London, the Victorian Era, paleontology/innovation/science and the illustrations are fantastic. Here’s a video of a reading of the book that is charming.
I thought – it would have been amazing to be there then and see the dinosaurs in person. Honestly, I didn’t realize they still existed until a couple years ago. I learned many moons ago the Crystal Palace had burned down, twice I believe, so I assumed that nothing had survived. But the dinosaurs did and I got to see them in May of 2019! Here are a few of my photos… (the guy in the photo is my London pal Rob.)
2. This Story about the Golden Tickets in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory – Charlie & the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl was my all-time favorite book as a kid. I’m not sure if I’ve already told this story but one year, I think around when I was in second or third grade, I got a hold of a copy of the book. I read it and loved it so much that I re-read it over and over and over again. Around the twelve time my Mom started getting a little concerned that I was so obsessed with just one book so she bribed me with my first Nancy Drew book. That wasn’t such a bad thing, it led to a whole new world of my favorite teenage sleuth, but I always loved Charlie and his family and Mr. Willy Wonka.
I also loved the movie with Gene Wilder. To me he will always be the one and only Willy Wonka. I was actually excited when I first heard that Tim Burton was going to give the book a try and that Johnny Depp was slated to play Wonka, but I think I’ve spent to many years visualizing the candy maker as Gene Wilder.
I stumbled across this story while searching for something else and thought it was very interesting. For fans of the story, it’s not a major thing but curious nonetheless.
For some reason the book originally had it say on the golden ticket that the visit was to in February but in the first movie they changed it to October. Here is a brief post on Roald Dahl Fans.com where the person who runs the blog received an email with a question about this difference.
Here is what it says in the book:
“And now, here are your instructions: The day I have chosen for the visit is the first day in the month of February…”
“The first day of February!” cried Mrs. Bucket. “But that’s tomorrow! Today is the last day of January, I know it is!”
The person who runs the Roald Dahl Fans blog has one theory that I think is most likely/logical and that is that the filming schedule was from August to November and so it simply didn’t look like February outdoors (and it would have been too expensive to make it look like February back then.) I think that this is the most likely explanation but one has to wonder if there might be some other reason like, is October 1st someone’s birthday or anniversary?
3. This Instagram Post by 99 year-old Betty White – how is it that I have only just thought to follow Betty White now???? So many shows like this that I would love to watch – thank goodness they aren’t available to stream because I don’t have enough time in the day! (If you haven’t watched the Betty White documentary on Netflix yet I highly recommend it. I‘ll be posting my ‘Menopausal Broad’s Guide to Netflix’ soon, hopefully within the next week.)
4. This Number from the 1957 Movie, Funny Face – Pink has always been my favorite color. I’d like to think it would have been even if I wasn’t born a girl, but in the 60s in Iowa there were only two options – girl or boy – and it wasn’t kosher for boys to like pink. Having said that, you just know that at least half of the guys in those white painter jumpsuits wish their suits were pink too. But they still look like they’re having fun! Aren’t the clothes fabulous?
5. This 360 Degree Van Gogh Painting – you may want to actually visit it on Facebook to so you can make it bigger.
6. This Website that Lets You Create Your Own Bayeux Tapestry – The Bayeux Tapestry is made up of seventy-five scenes depicting events leading up to the Norman Conquest in 1066. It has a very distinct style and has been studied in depth (in fact they even know that there are 93 penises, not all belonging to men, included in the art piece.)
Here’s my first attempt…
And here is an artist named Andrew Swainson’s clever version of the Bayeux Tapestry in a tribute to Monty Python…
7. These “Personless Protests” in Myanmar – human ingenuity knows no bounds.
1. This Photographer, Kirsty Mitchell– she is possibly my favorite photographer and I was lucky enough to get to see an exhibit for her book “Wonderland” in 2017. And incredibly they allowed photographs! I purchased the book (a completely worthwhile investment) but I love that I have several gorgeous digital shots. Here are a couple of my favorites (a few are close-ups of sections of photos; I thought I should limit how many full photos I posted – to see more be sure to visit Kirsty’s website!
3. This 3-Year-Old Who Dressed Up As All Her Role Models – when Scout Penelope‘s “Nonnie” was diagnosed with breast cancer her mom Ashley tried to think of a project that they could work on together that would keep both of them occupied. The result was a series of amazing photos, a few of which are below with many more at this link. Scout is three-years older now (have been looking through things I have filed away so I’m finding older articles and links); don’t be startled when you look at her Instagram.
4. These Formal Memos between the Produces of the Original Star Trek Discussing Vulcan Proper Names – this is very clever and hilarious! These people clearly are having fun and have a good working relationship.
Here’s the first letter:
FROM: Bob Justman
DATE: May 3, 1966
SUBJECT: STAR TREK PLANET VULCAN PROPER NAMES
I would like to suggest that all proper names for denizens of Mr. Spock’s “PLANET VULCAN” follow a set routine. To wit: all names begin with the letters “SP” and end with the letter “K.” All names to have a total of five letters in them—no more and no less.
Therefore: Mr. Spock aptly fits this pattern. Other names would be as follows:
Hope that the suggestions are of immense help to you. I remain,
Your humble and obedient servant,
Robert H. Justman
5. These Classic Movies Done in the Style of Persian Miniature Paintings – these are amazing drawings done by Turkish illustration Murat Palta. You can see several more at this link, though most seem to be from rather bloody films. And then there are more here.
Here are two of my favorites:
The Little Prince
6. This INCREDIBLE Colorized Collection of Short Historical Films – I’m a huge fan of Denis Shiryaev’s restoration work. I particularly love how he starts his videos explaining all the work he did to create the videos and the changes he made – fascinating! In this particular video he makes sure to clarify that his work is not completely historically accurate – he doesn’t know exactly what the original colors were, etc., so he needs to make educated guesses. Plus he sometimes will enhance things to make them look better, but again, sometimes it requires him to use his best guess. I think the final result is fantastic.
7. This Ad Seeking a Wife from 1865 – I must say, my favorite lines are the last three: “I want to buy bread-and-butter, hoop-skirts, and waterfalls for some person of the female persuasion during life. That what’s the matter with me. But I don’t know how to do it.”
I had to look this up but I think by “waterfalls” he means “waterfall bustles”.
I have been ranting a LOT about masks lately. I live in Wisconsin and on August 1st our Governor finally issued a mask mandate. When I read the headline in the newspaper it brought me so much joy I can’t even tell you. His action will be life-changing for me.
You see, I’m a at-risk person. I actually have multiple health issues that put me at-risk so I’d even say I’m a super-duper at-risk person. I’ve been isolating at home since March 11th and unlike most people who have been able to venture out a bit since around the end of May, I am still essentially sheltering at home. Other than weekly trips to pick up groceries, a few doctor appointments, and about the half dozen times I’ve gotten curbside pickup from restaurants instead of delivery, I haven’t been anywhere. According to my report from my insurance company (I have one of those little devices in my car) I am averaging less than 5 miles a week.
I did start having visitors in June, once the weather got nice enough to sit outside, but I can count the number of visits on one hand. I had one group of friends over that I hadn’t seen in over six months and between not seeing them for that long and just not seeing people in general I almost started to cry at one point.
Anyhoo, I realize it will take a little time for the effects of the mask mandate to settle in. The numbers won’t go down immediately and people obviously won’t all wear them willingly right away, but in time, hopefully in a month or two, I may actually be able to go into a store myself to shop or get my haircut or go over to friends’ homes, or have people come to my house, and not worry (as much) that it’s putting my life in jeopardy.
You see, it isn’t that I don’t trust my salon or my friends, I do. I know that they are doing everything they can to be safe, but they may unknowingly have interaction with someone who is not taking any precautions and that is what scares me. And really, even people who are completely careful have been known to catch the virus. The problem is, if I catch it, it’s pretty much a death sentence.
Sadly, the Wisconsin GOP, who control the legislature, decided they don’t like that the Governor has used the powers that he is authorized to use by law. The truth is, they don’t like that the Governor has any power at all and have done everything they can to take away any power and authority he has (even though he was elected Governor by a majority of the voters of this state, but I digress.) And now they want to repeal the mask mandate.
Trusting though that democracy is important and that I should make my opinion known and that if enough people did this that the WI GOP would actually listen, I wrote to my representative, Alberta Darling. I told her how extremely important it was that the mask mandate not be repealed. I told her what I said above, that the mask mandate will be life-changing for me, yadda, yadda, yadda.
Here is the reply I received from one of her aides…
Dear Ms. Stoltz,
Thank you for reaching out to Senator Darling’s office regarding the Governor’s recent statewide mask mandate. I will pass along your thoughts to Senator Darling.
First and foremost, Senator Darling believes that people in Wisconsin should continue to make smart decisions to protect themselves and those around them. She believes that everyone should practice social distancing guidelines and wear a mask when appropriate, and encourages businesses to follow WEDC guidelines to protect customers. Senator Darling supports the decisions of many local municipalities, restaurants, doctor’s offices, bars, gyms, and other businesses that already require individuals to wear masks and keep their distance while inside, as these decisions are best made at the local level instead of through a one-size-fits-all statewide mandate.
With that being said, Senator Darling takes issue with the process through which the mask mandate was implemented. She worries that a fresh emergency declaration is the beginning of an effort to keep students out of in-person classes this fall, which she has publicly expressed deep concerns with on many levels. As you are likely aware, many school districts in the area have been planning to begin session in-person this fall in conjunction with the recommendations of many scientists, experts and pediatricians.
Thank you again for reaching out. If you have any questions or further comments for me to pass along, please feel free to do so again.
I want you to notice that Senator Darling doesn’t have an issue with masks and that she is still encouraging people to wear them. But she (and her colleagues) are prepared to strike down the mask mandate because they fear it will lead to the Governor eventually adding a virtual school mandate, which he has publicly stated he will not.
(Side note, the Senator Majority Leader, Scott Fitzgerald has criticized the governor on changing his mind on issuing a stay-at-home order. This is one of the most asinine things I have ever heard. The fact that a political leader might need to change his mind on a health decision during a global pandemic and then get criticized for it is outrageous. Even more outrageous: that anything related to the pandemic is being made political in the first place.)
Of course the logical thing to do would be to wait to see if he actually does try to do a school mandate and then strike that down but no, they are going to let people suffer and die over their ideological zealotry and thirst for power. It terrible what people on a sinking ship that are desperately clawing at whatever they can are willing to do to try to survive. Sadly a lot of people will get hurt or die in their attempt to save themselves.
So, getting back to the original point of this blog – what is the missed opportunity. Well, for all these anti-mask people, who most likely were also anti-lockdown people and may very well have been carrying signs at those protests, well, you are giving up prime real estate for posting messages. I mean seriously, check out some of these masks.
Missed opportunity for getting ONE’S MESSAGE ACROSS. Here’s a few for the anti-maskers…
Or for those in support of masks and/or who want the world to be sane again there are masks like this:
For myself though, I see masks as an opportunity to ACCESSORIZE!!! There are some gorgeous masks out there…
OR, for those who have disposable income, why not buy the world’s most expensive mask that costs a mere $1.5 million…
And there is also the missed opportunity to show one’s INDIVIDUALITY…
By the way, since I’ve gone on so long about this topic (and because I am librarian after all) I might as well go all the way and provide some factual information.
Apparently some anti-mask geniuses have been making claims that they are exempt from wearing masks for health reasons. Sadly, people are even using fake “exemption” cards like the one below, which has been making its way ’round the internet. It cites the ADA and says they aren’t required to disclose their condition. How very convenient. But it is also complete crap.
FACT – more and more doctors have been getting the word out via various news outlets that there really are very few health concerns which prevent a person from wearing a mask. For most people it is simply a matter that it is uncomfortable or takes some getting used to.
They say if you find it difficult to breath in a mask, the solution may be to try a different style mask. Some suggest you practice wearing a mask for a little bit at a time at home, where you are comfortable and relaxed, and build up to where you can wear it for longer periods of time.
Here’s something from the Asthma.org.uk website that is excellent –
Do I have to wear a face covering if I have asthma?
Most people with asthma, even if it’s severe, can manage to wear a face mask for a short period of time, and shouldn’t worry if they need to wear one. Wearing a mask does not reduce a person’s oxygen supply or cause a build-up of carbon dioxide. You may have read stories that say that it can, but this isn’t true.
Some people with asthma tell us that face coverings can make breathing feel more difficult, which might be uncomfortable. It’s a good idea to try wearing a face covering at home, or on a short walk around the block first. It might not feel comfortable straight away, so give it a chance.
You can also experiment with different types of mask – some are easier to wear than others. Sometimes the feeling of wearing a face mask might take a bit of getting used to, but trying different types and starting with short periods of time can help you feel more comfortable.
There isn’t a blanket rule about face covering exemptions for everyone with asthma. But if you find it impossible to wear a face covering for health reasons, you don’t have to wear one. An example of this might be if a mask makes you too breathless.
I realize that this is specific to asthma, but it really could apply to anyone who finds it difficult to breath in a mask. Of all at-risk individuals, those with asthma would probably be the ones who have the most obvious breathing issues, so if they are being advised to wear masks, I think it’s pretty reasonable to assume most everyone should be wearing masks.
FACT– masks ARE effective, despite the politicians who keep to say they aren’t.
I had been thinking about how I hadn’t heard much about the reversal of the mask mandate for some time. It took me a while to write this blog post (I usually work on multiple things at the same time and also, it takes time to gather the info) so I started it about a week ago when the the WI GOP came out saying they were going to reverse the mandate come hell or high water. I thought that was curious.
It occurred to me it may be because they are waiting for today’s primary election to be over. You see the Governor had to call up over 900 National Guard to work as poll workers because that is how many the clerks across the state were short. There was some question about whether or not he would be able to do that if the WI GOP reversed the mask mandate because you see, the mandate wasn’t just a mask mandate, I believe it was also a Public Health Emergency which gave him the authority to do things like call up the National Guard for duties such as this. I wondered if they were simply waiting until the election was over to reverse the mask mandate and if that were the case that would be appalling. But it turns out, they appear not to have the votes to reverse it. OMG!
I thought I’d end with a few PSAs…
Here’s one by the State of Oregon. It was for the Fourth of July weekend but it’s relevant anytime.
Here’s a great campaign – Mask Up Milwaukee. Who do YOU MaskUp for?
Wearing a mask can be scary, not wearing one can be deadly.
This PSA from California – if this doesn’t make you want to wear a mask, you have a serious problem.
And the most powerful video of all of them I think, this PSA from the Czech Republic, a country with a population of over 10 million people but with less than 20,000 total cases and under 400 total deaths.
*Of course when listing a group of people, you can never say ALL scientists or ALL doctors or ALL business owners, but a good number of these groups support the mandate.
Well, I’m officially changing the regular Monday ‘5 Things that I Love” to ‘7 Things that I Love” since I’ve consistently had more than five things for the past few months. I’ve been hesitating do this because I didn’t want to commit to having more items each week, but it seems clear I’m having no problem finding more than enough so here goes. Let’s try seven for a while!
1. Morgan Freeman reading John Lewis’ Last Words – John Lewis and Morgan Freeman were friends for many years and there really is no better person to read this editorial that Lewis wrote just days before his passing.
2. Ambience/ASMR Videos – I’ve become a little obsessed with these videos. I realized that I wasn’t getting much done during the day between watching mysteries on the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Channel and watching the news. But I like to have sound and movement in the house so now I put these on YouTube, which I can pull up on my wonderful smartTV (technology is da bomb) and let them run for hours. There are hundreds and hundreds of these videos and I have made a folder so I could keep track of the ones I really like. Here are my favorites…
Have to have a least one library!
3. This Community Coronavirus Art Project – a few months ago I found a beautifully painted stone near my mailbox. I wasn’t sure who had left it but after a few weeks I discovered that several people in the neighborhood had received similar stones and that local kids had been painting them as a craft project during isolation. I eventually brought my stone inside and now have it as a paperweight. A few days ago I drove past the epicenter of the Art Project and took a few photos because it has grown quite a bit. People still can pick up rocks to paint and some have started leaving them around a
And be sure to note the ‘Please No Peeing’ sign…
4. Trey Kennedy – Moms Pre-Pandemic vs Post-Pandemic. Though technically it’s not ‘post-pandemic’ yet, it’s mid-pandemic but it still definitely works. It should probably have been Pre-Pandemic Isolation vs Post-Pandemic Isolation. I have a personal affinity for Trey Kennedy because my niece and nephew got him to do a personal birthday video for me for my birthday and it was da BOMB!
5. This Birthday Celebration – a friend of mine and a few of her friends rented this Air B&B, which is a “boat house” here in town. Formally known at the Edmund B. Gustdorf Milwaukee Boathouse & Lighthouse, it can be rented for a really reasonable rate and I hope when it is safe for me to venture out that I can rent it with her and go have a shindig there myself! Anyhoo, my friend made all these lovely paper fish for the birthday party and it made me happy so I needed to share it.
6. The U.S. and World Population Clock– I don’t think it’s any sort of secret that I’m a big nerd but if there as any doubt this will cinch it. I find this site mesmerizing. Just watch that world population number spin and try to grasp what the reality of those numbers.
7. Last but not least, Perry Mason – I’ve been a huge fan of Mr. Mason for years. Haven’t read many of the books but I’ve seen most of the movies and a decent number of the half-hour original television show. I always thought Raymond Burr was intriguing and I loved his relationship with Della, it wasn’t romantic but they clearly had a strong bond.
I was thrilled when I found out that they were doing kind of a reboot, it’s more of a prequel, to the series. And I will say, I have not been disappointed. Although the series on HBO is nothing like the Perry Mason shows most fans know and love, this origin story is completely believable and really just makes me love him and Della (who is a lesbian in the reboot) and Paul Drake (who is black in the reboot) all the more. Oh, and John Lithgow is fabulous.
I’ve also just started watching the entire original series which began in 1957 and lasted for nine seasons. It’s amazing how much they were able to pack into these episodes!
1. Dr. Anthony Fauci on the cover of ‘In Style’ magazine. Yowzah! The article is an interview with Dr. Fauci and his wife, Dr. Christine Grady, and it’s super interesting. I think it’s amazing that we finally made a rock star out of a scientist!
2. This article calling for the return of Parasols – I am taking this on as a personal mission.
3. Home Movie: The Princess Bride – Damn you Quibi! I have been resisting subscribing to any more streaming services. Quibi isn’t even really like other streaming services, you can only watch it on your phone (or tablet) and the films/episodes are no more than ten minutes in length. Initially I saw a trailer for a series called “Dummy” with Anna Kendrick and I wanted to see it but not enough to subscribe but after I saw this video, well, that was it. The clip below is a compilation of the episodes telling an abridged version of the movie. If you want to see the entire thing you will need to subscribe and I tell you, it is WORTH IT! Not only can you download the episodes to watch anytime, but if you turn you phone sideways you can see the original film side-by-side with the “Home Movie” for comparison. It’s marvelous!
4. The Moving of Booth Cottage – a Frank Lloyd Wright gem, Booth Cottage was purchased by a couple who wanted to tear it down to build a new house. W-T-F??? What kind of person tears down a Frank Lloyd Wright???? Anyway, a group of conservationists raised about $300,000 to help get the house moved to a new location in Glencoe and also worked out a long-term lease from the municipality. Once the foundation is laid and the house is put in place it will become a museum. Thank God there are still people in the world who value history and art. If you don’t want to watch the video here is an article from the Chicago Tribune with a few good photos.
5. Whitney: ‘Can I Be Me?’ – watched this documentary over the weekend and it was excellent. Whitney Huston was only two years older than me and I had pretty much grown up loving her, so like most people my age, her death was devastating. Seeing her in this movie was like bringing her back to life, even if it was just for a few hours. It’s difficult knowing that, had it been a different time, she might be alive today. And it’s frustrating knowing that so many people used her. Still, I will be watching it again.
6. Every player and coach on the Yankees & Nationals took a knee before the national anthem tonight in D.C. – this made my heart SOAR!
7. Charlie Berens & Alex Wehrley – I think I’ve included Charlie on my list before. I’m including him (and his wife Alex) again because he’s just so damned hilarious. It’s funny ‘cuz it’s true!
8. This “Remarkable ‘Reading Station’ by Charles Hindley & Co., London, с. 1890″ – the stuff that (librarian’s) dreams are made of!
9. Olivia de Havilland cussing up a storm – we lost a true star this weekend when Miss de Havilland passed away at the age of 104. She has always been one of my favorite actresses from the Silver Screen. Not only was she beautiful but she was a woman who didn’t take shit from anyone and she stood up for things she believed in.
For the past few months I’ve only had the psychological capacity to write my “Five Things I Love” posts. Many of those posts didn’t contain much text, they were, let’s face it, simple listicles.
It’s the stress that has been doing me in. Just like most everyone, I’m mentally exhausted. It’s been nearly a decade of getting up each morning to find out something bad has happened (I live in Wisconsin so we basically were the testing ground for a lot of what has been going on for the past 3-1/2 years nationally.)
And then 2020 rolls along. I had actually been looking forward to this year, had TWO trips planned. The first to India, which as you know, I managed to get in. The second was for May. I was supposed to travel for three weeks through Scotland, Ireland, and Wales with a couple friends and end in London where I could reunite with a new friend I had met in India. Obviously that trip didn’t happen.
Nick Seluk, the most beloved creator of The Awkward Yeti* recently posted this cartoon. It perfectly illustrates how I, and I’m sure every other person on the planet, feels right. I know I am counting the days until next year (or at least until November 3rd.)
A few weeks ago something bad happened, I can’t remember specifically what it was, and a friend of mine said it wasn’t on their 2020 Apocalypse Bingo Card. They were joking but I thought, hey, I should actually make one of those. So I did….
The problem was, I ran out of squares. The online bingo card generator I used only allowed for 25 squares. I’m guessing any more than that and the writing wouldn’t be legible. As I began to post my new bingo creation here and there people would say – oh, “you forgot this” or “you forgot that.” Daily, things would happen and I’d find myself saying, ARGH, I have no more squares!
Here are a few things that should be on the 2020 Apocalypse Bingo Card:
Wildfires in California
Harvey Weinstein sentenced to prison (which of course is a good thing but he should never have gotten away with his atrocities for so long. Also, just this week, a judge quashed the class action suit the victims had made against Weinstein and his production company basically leaving them in limbo on whether they will ever get any restitution. As a friend said to me earlier today, THIS is why we cannot have all white men on the bench anymore. )
Ghislaine Maxwell (Jeffrey Epstein redux)
US withdraws from the World Health Organization
Tornadoes in the southern United States
(Continued) Declining Freedom of the Press
Mask “protesters” (THIS is insane)
Roger Stone pardon (can’t believe he really did this)
Kanye West drops out of the Presidential Race after less than two weeks
Ivanka Trump poses with a can of GOYA beans on her twitter (can you say ethics violation?)
Elon Musk (pretty much anything that comes out of his mouth anymore)
Twitter Bitcoin hack
Kanye West actually is running for president (it seems, will be on a few state’s ballots after all)
CIA conducted secret cyber attacks against Iran (but the bigger concern is that the CIA has been given authority to choose targets without White House approval and that a new secret order issued by Donald Trump gave the agency broad power, undoing many restrictions that had been put in place by previous administrations)
Smear campaign of Dr. Anthony Fauci – also insane and DANGEROUS
So that’s 20 more squares that would be needed. That would be one huge mother of a bingo card. And I bet you can come up with even more. This year can just BITE ME.
Still, even though not much has changed from a month ago or two months ago and there still is a shitstorm going on in the world, I’ve decided that I think I’m ready to wade back in. Note the wade part. My biggest concern has been a fear of criticism. I’m feeling nervous about whether I want to or can endure trolls at the moment. Which is why I have been avoiding, for the most part, anything controversial. But honestly, I am just too damned opinionated and passionate about things to not use an available platform and I need to start using my voice again. So, here goes…
1. This article about the Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle and Friends – I’m sure most of the rest of you menopausal broads (and even those of you who simply grew up as a Gen Xer) remember Bullwinkle, the good-humored moose and his best buddy Rocky, who happened to be a flying squirrel. My favorite part of the show was ‘Fractured Fairy Tales’ but everything was great including ‘Peabody’s Improbably History,’ ‘Dudley Do-Right,’ and ‘Aesop & Son.’
This article starts out right away with a very relevant and obvious story. Turns out that Rocky & Bullwinkle were teaching us a lot about politics through satire. Seems like maybe we should all start watching it again.
Mr. Chairman, I am against all foreign aid, especially to places like Hawaii and Alaska,” says Senator Fussmussen from the floor of a cartoon Senate in 1962. In the visitors’ gallery, Russian agents Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale are deciding whether to use their secret “Goof Gas” gun to turn the Congress stupid, as they did to all the rocket scientists and professors in the last episode of “Bullwinkle.”
Another senator wants to raise taxes on everyone under the age of 67. He, of course, is 68. Yet a third stands up to demand, “We’ve got to get the government out of government!” The Pottsylvanian spies decide their weapon is unnecessary: Congress is already ignorant, corrupt and feckless.
Hahahahaha. Oh, Washington.
That joke was a wheeze half a century ago, a cornball classic that demonstrates the essential charm of the “Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends,” the cartoon show that originally aired between 1959 and 1964 about a moose and a squirrel navigating Cold War politics.
“How Bullwinkle Taught Kids Sophisticated Political Satire” by Beth Daniels, Smithsonian Magazine, September 7, 2017
2. This wonderful video about how mimes may be endangered…
4. Regency Novel or Pandemic Life? They really are nearly identical. Perhaps that is why I have accommodated better than most?
5. I’m a big game person – love all kinds of games. Recently I’ve been playing a game that kept advertising an app called Happy Color and it looked kind of fun. I downloaded it just to try it out and I’m totally obsessed. It’s really helpful with reducing my stress level. The app is free but you do have to watch an ad when you first start. You can watch more ads while your coloring if you want to earn credits for help on finding a spot that you might have missed coloring. Trust me, you may need it, especially for pictures with loads of detail. There’s also a cool function where you can save both a copy of the picture you color and/or a short video of the coloring process. Here’s an example!
These protesters who leapt in front of people who were trying to loot an area Target and stood in front of the store to block people from entering.
These white women, who formed a line of protection between the black protesters and the police.
These black protesters who protected this police officer. The officer became separated from his squad during a riot.
The cops in Queens who knelt in solidarity with demonstrators protesting racists police violence
Here’s one last article that includes many other places where police joined protesters marching against the violence and brutality that black and people of color have faced in American for centuries. It’s time for CHANGE! History is happening in front of our eyes.
With the long holiday weekend I almost forgot to post this. It’s Monday, right? (I have completely lost track of time…)
This Roman Catholic priest in Detroit practicing physical distancing by spraying holy water with a squirt gun into cars –
2. This wonderful Google Doodle celebrating Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s 61st birthday. I’m a huge fan of Google Doodles, even have an entire Pinterest board dedicated to my favorite ones. I particularly loved this one, mostly because my Mom adored Israel’s most famous song.
3. This Afghan all-girls robotics team, who have taken on the challenge of trying to build a ventilator out of car parts from old Toyota Corollas. They are following a design from M.I.T.
4. Read-aloud version of James and the Giant Peachby Taika Waititi who is joined by (wait for it) two of the Hemsworths – Chris and Liam – and Nick Kroll!!! I mean, I would have been over the moon if it had been Taika alone but Jeez Louise. And wait until you see who joins Taika in the subsequent episodes (Merle & Benedict are fantastic!) My good friend Leann posted this on Facebook and I practically fell out of my comfy, red chair (which I have been sitting in for 74 days. It’s possible some sort of vacuum seal may have formed between myself and the chair. I really should stand up. Kidding of course.)
5. This photo of my cousins (well I call them my cousin-nieces and cousin-nephews because my cousin’s kids are more like nieces & a nephew to me because my cousins are more like siblings to me.) ANYWAY, this photo of my cousins visiting my Aunt & Uncle during the pandemic. But here’s the thing. My cousins live in a Chicago Suburb and my Aunt & Uncle live in Dubuque, IA so what they did was drive for 6 hours round trip just so they could all stand outside in the driveway talking to one another IN REAL LIFE. I mean, how sweet is that?!? In this photo my Aunt & Uncle are giving the kids hugs. They are so cute.
6. OMG, have you seen Chef Baby Kobe???
7. Modular Cheat (Pan) Sheets – this brilliant Kickstarter only has about 60 hours left to go so if you want to order them you better hurry. The people behind this product were looking for $10,000 in pledges and are currently at $2,108,930! They have nearly 25,000 backers, including me. I know that I will be using these a LOT.
1. A friend of mine shared this Coronavirus version of Bohemian Rhapsody on my Facebook page. It’s fantastic! Right after I graduated from college I lived in the most wonderful apartment on the east side of town. 17th floor, overlooking Lake Michigan. I could only able to do this because I had an awesome roommate who made it possible (he footed more than his fair share of the rent.) Anyway, we had a LOT of parties in that place, I mean, how could we not? On special occasions the two of us would do an air guitar rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody.” In fact, it became our thang. Those were the days…. The friend who shared this link with me was a witness, I mean he attended those parties…
Not only are the lyrics clever but this guy’s voice is incredible! I hope Brian May has seen this and I believe Freddie Mercury would have loved it.
2. French Girl Fleur de Rose Facial Polish – I actually can’t take credit for having discovered this stuff. I read some time ago this was one of Emma Watson’s favorite products. There are only a few movie stars that I respect enough to care what they think, and she is definitely on that list. This facial polish makes my skin feel like it’s 25 years old again. I wouldn’t be without it, even made sure to take it with me to India. I’ve been buying it for a few years. In fact, when I first starting buying from French Girl she only had an Etsy shop.
3. The Great Realisation – this is absolutely brilliant. Why hindsight is 2020…
5. Stream These – I watched a ton of new shows/movies this past weekend. So many excellent ones –
This Beautiful Fantastic (Amazon Prime) – a modern-day fairy tale and exactly what we all need right now. If you are a librarian it’s a must watch film, if you are a gardener, same thing.
The Half of it (Netflix) – the cast is exceptional, a teen rom-com with a LGBTQ and a multi-cultural twist. I already was a fan of Leah Lewis who plays the lead, Ellie Chu. Leah is George is the modern Nancy Drew series.
Never Have I Ever (Netflix) – this is the new Mindy Kaling series about a teenage Indo-American girl getting through high school and dealing with all the typical things that a modern, 21st century teenage American girls deals with, who also happens to have a mother who is a devoutly religious Hindu and very traditionally Indian and whose father has died prematurely from a heart attack.
Upload (Amazon Prime) – a lot of people/reviewers are comparing this show to ‘The Good Place’ and I can see how that could happen. It is, after all, about life after death. The big difference of course is that this is about an artificially created afterlife. I couldn’t stop watching, it’s not as funny as ‘The Good Place’ but I really liked the characters, particularly the main two people. You can see that like the people in ‘The Good Place’ these individuals are going to grow as the show goes along.
6. The Tart Adage from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – I’m a HUGE fan of Alice in Wonderland. I’ve been looking forward to seeing the V&A exhibition – Curious & Curiouser for nearly a year. Sadly I may not get to see it now. But in the mean time I found this video clip!!!
“According to a news release, The Carol Burnett Show will be available for streaming on demand across Shout! Factory TV platforms, on ShoutFactoryTV.com; Shout! Factory TV’s Roku, Amazon Fire, Apple TV, and Android apps; and on various Shout! Factory TV branded channels including Tubi, Amazon Prime Channels, and the Roku Channel.”