Sunday, August 22, 2021

This Virus Truly Hates Fun

 philosophers should entertain ideas in a patient and imaginative manner, and not treat them, or those who offer them, as the local heavies in a Western movie treat the stranger in town. It is not the most creative approach in philosophy to shoot an idea out of someone’s hand as soon as he picks it up.

—Bernard Williams

This Virus Truly Hates Fun

Any place where people can gather - including the retro pinball arcades that were making a comeback - is fair game for COVID. - CBC

Restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19 inflict serious mental harm, and as Sydney heads into another six weeks of lockdown, the government must not write off these harms as a secondary concern.

Sydneysiders are suffering. They have weathered eight weeks of significant restrictions on their lives and, almost weekly, are being asked to give up more freedoms while seeing little reward for their sacrifice. The latest decision to impose a curfew on western and south-western Sydney and to limit exercise to one hour a day in these areas has fuelled concerns for the mental health of the disadvantaged communities affected.

Indie Games – “Wayfinder finds us wandering a dying land, finding words as we explore the wilderness that we can craft into poetry that revives this place. Nature doesn’t seem to be doing too well (which means that you probably won’t be healthy for long, either). You can set off to survey the land that remains, savoring its tranquility and taking it in to the soothing music and sounds of the bird calls as you wander. As you walk, you’ll stumble upon tokens that will inspire verses of poetry, the words coming to life in your footsteps. After you collect a few of these poems, you can bring them back to the game’s central location to help restore a vital tree that lies there. It makes for some lovely, if sobering, walks through a peaceful place. As you let yourself become more in tune with the words, which all capture these small moments in nature, your footsteps begin to heal the land as you walk. As you allow yourself to be more in tune with the beauty around you, and what its destruction means, your character starts to bring more positive forces into this world. The generated nature of the tokens and words doesn’t seem to take away from the power of the poetry as it forms, and it reinforces this connection between you and this place. It reminds that we need to stop and pay attention to the suffering of our world, and that we have to take steps to see it and heal it if we’re to have much of a future. Wayfinder is a peaceful, yet thoughtful experience in the connection of nature and humanity, and how we ignore this connection at our greatest peril…”

Saturday’s good reading and listening for the weekend

What people in other forums are saying about public policy

The Newest Self-Publishing Platform Is Not What You Might Expect

OnlyFans isn't famous for its fanfic. Now, one author "says she’s already made more money in the first two days since releasing 'Ezekiel in the Snow' than she has ever been paid for her work by a literary magazine, publisher, or museum." - LitHub

The Extraordinarily Improbable Path To Publication For This Booker Nominee

After many rejections, An Island was published by tiny indie press Holland House in a print run of a mere 500 copies owing to the pandemic. It was met mostly with silence. - The Guardian

The Day A Guerrilla Artist Changed Los Angeles Freeway Signage Forever

"Just after the sun came up on installation day, with video cameras rolling from various vantage points, Ankrom put on a hardhat and safety vest, hoisted a ladder up to the larger freeway sign apparatus, and climbed up to the plank with his work." - The LAnd Magazine

A Brief History Of Art At The Olympics

Leni Riefenstahl, Andy Warhol, the Black Power salute, and this year's floating heads - there's a long history of, and often a large budget for, art at the Olympics, whether an audience cares or not. - FastCompany

Antidote du jour, “A snapping turtle emerges from weeks of sleeping beneath a muddy lake that had dried up” (via):

How To Become Wise? Learning Rather Than Persuading

"The most remarkable feature of Socrates’s approach is his punctilious politeness and sincere enthusiasm. The conversation usually begins with Socrates asking his interlocutor: Since you think you know, can you tell me..." - Boston Review

We’re Taught That Battle And Triumph Are Desirable. Is Neutrality A Better Option?

Our heroes are the warrior, the entrepreneur, and the activist, not the neutral parties. Neutrality appears cold, lifeless, effeminate, weak, and suspect. - Tablet

In Praise Of Celebrity Memoirs

The sooner you accept that star stories are full of embellishments and omissions, invented quotes and one-sided recollections dictated to patient ghostwriters, the sooner you’ll come to appreciate them as the grand and eccentric performances that they are. - The New Yorker

Can This Technology Help You Be A Better Writer?

Lynit is a digital platform that helps authors visualise, plan and weave together the various elements - such as characters, plot arcs, themes and key events - that form a story. - BBC