collection of interesting reads to provoke thought and provide fodder for conversation.
Gwyneth glows like a radioactive swan’ – my day at the Goop festival–I hear that idea repeated over and over again at the Goop conference – take care of yourself so you can take care of others. Put your mask on first. Hold space for yourself. Be entitled. Take. At a certain point, it begins to feel less like self-care and more like rationalisation. I don’t know anything about the personal lives of the women at In Goop Health – who they give money to, what hardships they have endured, why they were drawn to this event – and every person I interact with is funny and smart and kind and self-aware. But it is self-evident and measurable that white people in the US, in general, are assiduous about the first part of that equation (caring for ourselves) and less than attentive to the second (caring for others). www.theguardian.com
A Look Inside James Baldwin’s 1,884 Page FBI File–When did the Bureau lose sleep over the popularity of Baldwin’s “recent books . . . ringing up best-selling figures,” the “100,000 copies in hardcover” sold of The Fire Next Time and “the two million mark in soft covers” in sight for Another Country? It did so when a column in the Washington Post conveyed the news that Baldwin planned to publish another “book about the F.B.I. in the South.” Literary Hub
Wanting Monogamy as 1,946 Men Await My Swipe–Leaving Michael’s apartment one Tuesday morning, I smiled and said, “Have a good class today.” That may not sound like much, but I was trying to leave a hint: I was interested in more than our one-night-a-week thing.
Understandably, he didn’t catch on. www.nytimes.com
‘Hey boy, you want to go see a hangin’?’: A lynching from a white Southerner’s view–When I was a little boy on our family farm, I was walking up a cotton “middle” one day, busting up dirt clods with my bare feet, and my daddy walked out into the field and told me a story. He said “Son, when I was a boy like you, just walking in this cotton patch one morning, my granddaddy rode up in his wagon and team of mules. He said, ‘Hey boy, you want to go see a hangin’?” And being a 12-year-old boy, my daddy said, “Yessir, Grandpa!” www.washingtonpost.com
Death of a Pig–Once in a while something slips - one of the actors goes up in his lines and the whole performance stumbles and halts. My pig simply failed to show up for a meal. The alarm spread rapidly. The classic outline of the tragedy was lost. I found myself cast suddenly in the role of pig's friend and physician - a farcical character with an enema bag for a prop. I had a presentiment, the very first afternoon, that the play would never regain its balance and that my sympathies were now wholly with the pig. This was slapstick - the sort of dramatic treatment which instantly appealed to my old dachshund, Fred, who joined the vigil, held the bag, and, when all was over, presided at the interment. When we slid the body into the grave, we both wore shaken to the core. The loss we felt was not the loss of ham but the loss of pig. He had evidently become precious to me, not that he represented a distant nourishment in a hungry time, but that he had suffered in a suffering world. But I'm running ahead of my story and shall have to go back. www.theatlantic.com
The Myth of Disability ‘Sob Stories’–Last November, a surprise announcement changed my life. I had been selected as a 2017 Rhodes Scholar. It was exhilarating news. Several days later, however, I got another, less pleasant surprise. A professor at my university stopped me in the hall and said, “I know I shouldn’t say this, but now that you won the Rhodes, will you throw away your cane and your brace?”
I did nothing to solicit this comment. Nor had I ever joked with him about needing ambulatory assistance and an ankle-foot orthotic since suffering a spinal cord injury in a serious accident three years before. www.nytimes.com
The Addicts Next Door–Two of the parents were lying on the ground, unconscious, several yards apart. As Barrett later recalled, the couple’s thirteen-year-old daughter was sitting behind a chain-link backstop with her teammates, who were hugging her and comforting her. The couple’s younger children, aged ten and seven, were running back and forth between their parents, screaming, “Wake up! Wake up!” When Barrett and Mulligan knelt down to administer Narcan, a drug that reverses heroin overdoses, some of the other parents got angry. “You know, saying, ‘This is bullcrap,’ ” Barrett told me. “ ‘Why’s my kid gotta see this? Just let ’em lay there.’ ” After a few minutes, the couple began to groan as they revived. Adults ushered the younger kids away. From the other side of the backstop, the older kids asked Barrett if the parents had overdosed. “I was, like, ‘I’m not gonna say.’ The kids aren’t stupid. They know people don’t just pass out for no reason.” During the chaos, someone made a call to Child Protective Services. www.newyorker.com
10 Things Russian Moms Do That Every American Mom Should Try–Kids' menus are a completely foreign idea to most Russian parents. The kids are expected to eat whatever the adults are eating and whatever is given to them, without alteration or hesitation. Russian parents enjoy good food and introduce a variety of food to their children from a young age. They do not understand children who eat only chicken nuggets and grilled cheese. Honestly, that is considered blasphemous. www.romper.com
14 Curious Telegrams from (and to) Famous Writers–The other day, Letters of Note reposted a famous telegraph that Dorothy Parker sent to her editor after what sounds like an uncommonly bad writing day. I have to say, I am fond of telegraphs; yes, … Literary Hub
Anger Is the Shared Fuel of Mass Shooters and Everyday Murderers. Here’s What Might Stop Both–It seems clear that the U.S. needs an updated counterterrorism playbook, a way to better prevent people with radical ties from obtaining deadly weapons. But as that debate plays out, policy makers might also focus on a far more common precursor to gun violence, one that applies nearly universally to shooters of all types: anger. www.thetrace.org