Sunday, February 26, 2023

Character Counts In The Super Bowl (And In Life)

‘It’s like … like a story, I suppose — and everyone has a story, don’t they?  I mean,  everyone has a batch of stories and that’s what we are, I think — a batch of stories.  Our bodies crumple and disintegrate but our stories remain and … well, hopefully they’ll live on forever because they’re our legacy, I guess — they’re what makes it all worthwhile, don’t you think?  The stories are what really matter? 

As Millions Of Dollars Worth Of Photos Vanished, The Dealer Provided Excuse After Excuse

Wendy Halsted Beard, says the FBI, "allegedly went to great lengths to deceive her clients, ... making up a double lung transplant and other medical emergencies, and swapping one client’s signed photograph with a $405.26 purchase from the Ansel Adams Gallery’s gift shop." - The New York Times

The Importance of Trove, and the National Archives

As Australian readers may know, there is an impending funding crisis for Trove:

The National Library is threatening to pull the plug on Trove, its free online service that provides public access to collections from Australian libraries, universities, museums, galleries and archives. (Read more about it at The Conversation.)

Regular readers know that I am not into what has been described as Anzackery. Nor am I interested in family history, tracing back generations of people about whom nothing is known apart from their BDM dates.  But on the one and only day I attended an Anzac service, I thought of the people in the family archives.  Many years ago my first mother-in-law told me about them as we travelled to Swan Hill to visit her sister. It is through Trove that I have been able to confirm and expand on her family story.

The expeditionary forces path the ADF seems destined to pursue is not new. It is as old as colonialism. Joseph Conrad captured the sense well at the beginning of his book Heart of Darkness: 

“In the empty immensity of earth, sky, and water, there she [a French warship] was, incomprehensible, firing into a continent. Pop, would go one of the six-inch guns; a small flame would dart and vanish, a little white smoke would disappear, a tiny projectile would give a feeble screech—and nothing happened. Nothing could happen. There was a touch of insanity in the proceeding, a sense of lugubrious drollery in the sight; and it was not dissipated by somebody on board assuring me earnestly there was a camp of natives – he called them enemies! – hidden out of sight somewhere.”

Australia’s defence delusions increase the risk of deadly conflict

WSJ Op-Ed: Character Counts In The Super Bowl (And In Life)

  1. No story lives unless someone wants to listen. The stories we love best do live in us forever. So whether you come back by page or by the big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.” - J.K. Rowling, author
  2. “There is no friend as loyal as a book” - Ernest Hemingway, author
  3. “I’m obsessed with giving the audience something they don’t see coming.” - Jordan Peele, writer and director of Get Out
  4. "You’re never going to kill storytelling, because it’s built in the human plan. We come with it.” - Margaret Atwood, author of The Handmaid's Tale
  5. “The most amazing thing for me is that every single person who sees a movie, not necessarily one of my movies, brings a whole set of unique experiences, but through careful manipulation and good storytelling, you can get everybody to clap at the same time, to hopefully laugh at the same time, and to be afraid at the same time.” - Steven Spielberg, filmmaker
  6. “I’m writing my story so that others might see fragments of themselves.” - Lena Waithe, screenwriter for Bones and Master of None
  7. “I'll tell you a secret. Old storytellers never die. They disappear into their own story.” - Vera Nazarian, author
  8. “The very reason I write is so that I might not sleepwalk through my entire life.” - Zadie Smith, author
  9. “Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign. But stories can also be used to empower, and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people. But stories can also repair that broken dignity.” - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author
  10. “Think about the word destroy. Do you know what it is? De-story. Destroy. Destory. You see. And restore. That's re-story. Do you know that only two things have been proven to help survivors of the Holocaust? Massage is one. Telling their story is another. Being touched and touching. Telling your story is touching. It sets you free.” - Francesca Lia Block, author
  11. “We are, as a species, addicted to story. Even when the body goes to sleep, the mind stays up all night, telling itself stories.” - Jonathan Gottschall, The Storytelling Animal
  12. “Story, as it turns out, was crucial to our evolution -- more so than opposable thumbs. Opposable thumbs let us hang on; story told us what to hang on to.” - Lisa Cron, Wired for Story
  13. “Good stories surprise us. They make us think and feel. They stick in our minds and help us remember ideas and concepts in a way that a PowerPoint crammed with bar graphs never can.” - Joe Lazauskas and Shane Snow, The Storytelling Edge
  14. “Whether you know it or not, your desire to write comes from the urge to not just be “creative,” it’s a need (one every human being on earth has) to help others. A well-told Story is a gift to the reader/listener/viewer because it teaches them how to confront their own discomforts.” - Shawn Coyne, The Story Grid
  15. “Create those things where human protagonists relate to us, where the stakes and conflict grip us, and where the emotions move us. Craft those simple things, those glorious things, those things so often forgotten but so desperately needed. There’s no hidden or corporate meaning behind the word ‘story.’ We know what they are. And we need to start telling them.” - Jay Acunzo, founder of Unthinkable Media