Small Moments

I captured a couple of small moments of joy yesterday. The first was a bird that was hopping around outside my bedroom window:


And the second was the simple aesthetics of my new bedside table that I got from Ikea using the gift certificate I’d gotten when I bought my bed:




A quote for you:

Creative work is not a selfish act or a bid for attention on the part of the actor. It’s a gift to the world and every being in it. Don’t cheat us of your contribution. Give us what you’ve got. – Steven Pressfield (via Creativityist)

In fact, trying to get attention or making something as a selfish act are easy compared to true creativity. I am becoming more and more aware of how much humility it takes to submit to your work, to let go of ego and desire and let the story become itself. That is not to say that the creative act is akin to automatic writing or that creativity doesn’t require dedication and considerably training in the medium of creation. A truly generous gift requires commitment and sacrifice. Artists that give of themselves, that offer their gifts to the world with generosity and humility, will create work that, even if it fails on a technical level, makes the world a richer, more interesting place.

Why I Don’t Like Facebook’s New “Like”

I joined Facebook this past summer and, because of joining, I reconnected with an old High School friend which led us to actually meet up when I was going through Austin, TX. I spend most of the day checking in on the site and sharing posts or using my status to flirt, quote song lyrics, offer observations, share what I’m doing or how I’m feeling, or spout nonsense. I am not, and would never be mistaken for, a luddite or someone who is anti-social networks.1 Recently, the Facebook Terms of Service bruhaha has made me rethink what I share on Facebook, but I have no plans on closing my account or slowing down my use of the service. However, this new “like” function bothers me. Bothers me a lot.

But it’s innocuous, you say, a simple and fast way to indicate you like something that someone said or posted. What’s wrong with that?

Nothing worth anything is simple and fast. If you like something I said or posted, it means a whole hell of a lot more when you take the time to drop me a comment or a message and tell me so. If you’re not going to take the time, if your thoughts and opinions are going to be further reduced to the click of a mouse button, then what is the worth of your liking it?

Pretty much nothing.2

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  1. I have a rather boring job, but at least I have internet access []
  2. If you can’t take 30 seconds to write something like “great thought” or “i like this” then, to be honest, I don’t care if you liked it or not. []

Several Links of Distinction

Amanda Marcotte has an excellent analysis of how Bristol Palin has been and continues to be used by the media and Sarah Palin.

Law? We don’t need no stinkin’ laws in order to arrest you! (via BoingBoing)

The future’s so bright it shines right into your brain.

Making the web readable: thoughts on design and the screen (which I am going to think about in terms of this site). (via Daring Fireball)

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If You Get Busted Smoking Pot Make Sure You Are An Olympic Athlete

The South Carolina lawman who drew criticism for launching a criminal investigation over the Internet-disseminated photo of the Olympian smoking a bong has announced that he will not pursue charges against Beijing’s golden boy.

Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott, who has already arrested eight other coed ne’er-do-wells as a result of his investigation, nevertheless defended his decision to investigate Phelps.

“Ignore it and be criticized or address it and be criticized,” he said. “I chose to do what was right.

“Michael Phelps is truly an American sports hero…Even with his star status, he is still obligated to obey the laws of our state. He is not immune from his responsibilities to do what is right. He is also human and can make a mistake.” (Link; emphasis added)

Double standard much? I guess the other eight people arrested aren’t human and aren’t entitled to make a mistake. As much as I don’t care about Phelps smoking pot, (and I really really don’t care), the fact is that if the Sheriff is arresting other, less famous people, his decision to investigate Phelps is at least fair and consistent with the law.

Look, I don’t care that Phelps smoked pot. He could be shooting up heroin for that matter and I still wouldn’t care and no, I don’t think he should have gone to jail for this. But neither should anyone else and the fact of the matter is that other, less famous people are being arrested.

The moral of the story: if you are famous odds are you get to break the law  and have few, if any, repercussions while the rest of us less famous people would be (and in fact are) doing time.

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Just the Links, Ma’am

And a child shall lead them: Bristol Palin making more sense in one media appearance than all of her mother’s appearances put together and squared.

Reason Why Science is NOT Religion #438 (and why we all need to cultivate critical thinking abilities in ourselves and our children): opposition and criticism make science better. (via Boing Boing)

All of this has happened before, and will happen again: Republicans on repeat.

Some cool Mac action that I haven’t gotten around to using, but probably should.

If I could listen to my iPod at work (and omg let me just repeat how crazy-making it is that I can’t), I would love to check out some of the new classes available at iTunes U.

Have I mentioned how much I lurve Sarah Haskins?

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The Representative Democracy We Deserve

Well, I guess the ignorant nature of most of our politicians is actually quite representative of our country:

PRINCETON, NJ — On the eve of the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth, a new Gallup Poll shows that only 39% of Americans say they “believe in the theory of evolution,” while a quarter say they do not believe in the theory, and another 36% don’t have an opinion either way. These attitudes are strongly related to education and, to an even greater degree, religiosity. (Link)

Now, don’t get me wrong, I think that this demonstrates an appalling lack of commitment toward education in this country more than it reveals a fundamental lack of intelligence on the part of individuals. Ignorance is not the same as stupidity. And willful idiocy is not the same as stupidity. However, the ignorance that these numbers evince surely provides at least one explanation for the general ignorance, stupidity, and idiocy of many of our elected politicians.

(via BoingBoing)

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