Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Good, the Bad, and the Curious (Links!)

Here's what I've been reading that's made me smile (The Good), cry (The Bad), and think (The Curious).

The Good

The oldest living teacher didn't start her career until she was 81. Two decades later, she's still going strong.

My friends in the band Amen Lucy, Amen have an album releasing tomorrow (January 17). You should buy it. 

Pope Francis tells women not to think twice about breastfeeding in church.

The Bad

Georgia representative Jack Kingston said there was "no such thing as a free lunch" when he suggested making students clean offices for lunch benefits. In the meantime, he was racking up plenty of tax-funded meals of his own.

Virginia state Senator and Congressional hopeful Richard Black doesn't think spousal rape should be a crime.

Here are the states where your own wishes (even when written in a legal document) don't matter if you're pregnant. Mine is one of them. Shudder.

The Curious

This Sporcle quiz is difficult, but fun. Can you figure out the book titles with one letter in each word changed?

This NPR piece takes a look at the anthropology of walking:
Americans take 5,117 steps a day, a distance of approximately 2.5 miles. That's a significant shortfall compared to the averages in Western Australia (9,695), Switzerland (9,650) and Japan (7,168).
Why do Facebook's content policies allow beheadings but not breastfeeding? This is a thorough and interesting look at the history of our treatment of the nipple and how social media platforms handle it today:
In 1935 New Jersey hit back with a mass arrest of 42 topless men in Atlantic City. After years of protest and outrage New York lifted the male topless ban in 1936, and suddenly a man's nipples were no longer "obscene" in society, but rather commonplace and natural.
Here's a good discussion of the marketing and perception of female athletes:
 The uptightness of attitudes about women athletes, about women’s athleticism should be read as not only sexist but as homophobic – it supports gender policing as women are “dolled up” to reassure the spectator that they are “really” women. And it is a displacement of the panic the homophobic spectator feels when asked to consider the amount of attention and energy he spends thinking about, talking about, and playing with other guys.
Ideologies of sex, sexuality and gender shape our ideas about what a sport spectacle is; they shape how we experience those spectacles. They in fact shape how we experience the sports we practice.
Malcolm Gladwell pens an essay on rediscovering his faith that is fascinating and moving:
 What I understand now is that I was one of those people who did not appreciate the weapons of the spirit. I have always been someone attracted to the quantifiable and the physical. I hate to admit it. But I don’t think I would have been able to do what the Huguenots did in Le Chambon. I would have counted up the number of soldiers and guns on each side and concluded it was too dangerous. I have always believed in God. I have grasped the logic of Christian faith. What I have had a hard time seeing is God’s power.
Mental Floss has a list of ten body parts you don't really need.

Does Louis C.K.'s show act as a powerful statement about the work of parenting and the domestic sphere?

Maybe we should be nagging our kids more after all.

Tori at Anytime Yoga reminds us that maybe we should just not comment on stranger's food choices:
My food choices are rarely the sum total of what is in my cart in any given week. And my life is never defined in total by my food choices. Moreover, it is not my job for the contents of my grocery cart to pass someone else’s muster — not even when it’s a compliment. 
 Kelly O'Sullivan has some perspective on what happens when a feminist's son starts dating
It is my job to protect my children from harm but it is not my job to get in-between my children and their life experiences. It is, in fact, my responsibility to get out of the way when they start forging personal romantic relationships, even when I know they might get hurt.
 That's what I've been reading. What about you? Any links to share?

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