Saturday, August 21, 2021

Counting Happiness and Where it Comes From

 Throughout human history, oceans have been crossed, mountains have been scaled, and great families have blossomed — all because of a few simple chords and a melody that inflamed a heart and propelled it on a noble, romantic mission.

Flowing Data Counting Happiness and Where it Comes From – “Researchers asked 10,000 participants to list ten things that recently made them happy. The result was HappyDB, a collection of 100,000 happy moments. For each moment, I parsed out the subject, verb, and object to better see what makes people happy overall. For example, someone might have said “I watched a good movie yesterday.” The subject was “I”, the verb was “watched”, and the object was “movie”. Then I counted and connected the dots.”

21 Intriguing Celebrity Documentaries Thatll Give You An Honest Look Into How These Famous People Truly Live

Researchers Find Children 'Burn So Much Energy, They're Like a Difference Species'

Saturday’s good reading and listening for the weekend

What people in other forums are saying about public policy...

The Problem With Today’s Book Reviews

The main problem is that the contemporary American book review is first and foremost an audition — for another job, another opportunity, another day in the content mine... - N+1

Nach Waxman, Who Founded Manhattan’s Bookstore Of Culinary Knowledge, 84

Waxman founded Kitchen Arts & Letters in a former butcher shop in 1983, and for decades, he provided what he called "professional tools" for chefs, food writers, food and wine historians, and thousands of other culinary workers. - The New York Times

cumulonimbus mammatus cloudsKim

Back in 2012, Michael F. Johnston captured a particularly spectacular mammatus cloudover Regina, Saskatchewan. I don’t know how much of a cloud enthusiast Johnston is, but I got pretty excited when I captured these mammatus clouds at sunset a couple 

The Painful Cost Of The Writing Life

The financial cost, the personal cost, the emotional costs ... who chooses this? - LitHub

Why Italy Might See a Worker Co-operative Boom Grassroots Economic Organizing

Finnish photographer Mikko Lagerstedt creates striking, ethereal, and atmospheric photographs — check out his work on his website and Instagram.

The New York Times: “…Nature has been an escape for many of us during the Covid-19 pandemic. The freedom of wild animals has seemed especially wonderful when our own movements and associations have been clipped. If you watch wildlife closely, however, you will eventually witness the uncontrolled spread of illness — the worst-case scenario we have spent more than a year of our lives now trying to avoid. The sick greenfinch on my balcony was suffering from ulcers on his throat that made it painful to swallow. 

Probably he starved. Had I recognized his illness at the time, I should have dumped the water and taken down the feeder to prevent him from infecting other birds. Ever since the greenfinches returned to my balcony this spring, I clean the feeder every week, change the water daily and sweep fallen seeds from the ground. My relationship with birds has come to resemble the rest of my life, with its many routines and anxieties around the detection and avoidance of disease. Animal pandemics have much to teach us about our own. Last summer, when most of us were still finding our footing, I spoke to a crow ecologist at Binghamton University named Anne Clark, who mentioned “our pandemic,” sounding as though she had lived through this before. She was talking about the West Nile virus, a mosquito-borne pathogen that killed nearly 40 percent of the crows at her study site near Ithaca, N.Y., in 2002 and 2003…”

Finding a Way Back

Jason Kottke   Aug 19, 2021

For the New Yorker, the novelist Donald Antrim wrote about wanting to die by suicide and being saved by electroconvulsive therapy: Finding a Way Back from Suicide.

I had survived, or thought that I’d survived, my parents’ drinking and shouting, our constant moving, the losses of places and friends, annihilation after annihilation. I’d played in the yard, and smashed tennis balls against walls for hours, and built model airplanes, and listened to my records at night in my room. I’d slept with cats for company, and ridden my bike, and struggled in school, and, later in life, gone to bars, and then quit going to bars, and smoked cigarettes and pot, and fallen in love, and argued and made up, and refused to speak to my father, and suffered my mother. None of this had stopped my dying. Writing had not stopped my dying. The Twelve Steps had not stopped my dying. Therapy hadn’t stopped it, and my old friends couldn’t stop it; nor could Regan. No one could.