Happy Lunar New Year, 2023!

Odin's life, articles, and findings from the web.

Happy Lunar New Year, 2023!
The British tellescope- being an ephemeris of the colestial motions, with an almanack for the year of our Lord 1725

Hello, world!

This has been a nice week, and relatively quiet, which has been nice. I’ve been incredibly tired recently, so I’ve been trying to treat myself more kindly, to rest more, etc. The rest of my classes start this coming week, so I’ll be reassessing how I handle my schedule in various ways, too.

But, enough preamble!

I have some interesting articles for you this week! I’m particularly proud of “The Data-Driven Truth About “Tough on Crime” Policy,” which I wrote using the zettelkasten method combined with Zotero for my research organization.


This first is an oldie but a goodie: a piece I spent a fair bit of time researching, and one that was a lot of fun to put together.

I’m proud of this piece, and I intend to write more on the subject in the future. Using my zettelkasten method and Zotero, I’m hoping to make more headway with my personal essays of the next year.

It wouldn’t be me if I didn’t include something techie-related! This one is just a review, and the answer to the title question is “No.” Notion’s annoying because they have shit security and privacy features, but they’re better than the competition at literally everything else. However, if you want to replace Google, Skiff is a great alternative.

And, lastly, for anyone who’s suffering from writer’s block, try out this little exercise! It’s based on ancient Nordic poetic techniques, and was fun to research and write about.

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This week saw me continue to work on my new project. Not as much consistent work as I’d have liked to see—I only have two main blocks scheduled for creative writing time at present. My hope is to put more of that into the mornings. If I don’t manage it at least three mornings next week, I’ll reassess and maybe make another official block.

From the web

This figure describes how people who wore a face covering were less likely to test positive than people who didn’t wear one.

The world is in a strange and complex state right now. COVID-19 numbers are surging globally, especially in unvaccinated communities. But, even in well-vaccinated parts of the United States, complications from Long Covid continue to arise, and the trauma of more than a million dead has created all sorts of ripple effects that won’t be understood for decades.

In case you think I’m just being alarmist, here’s how the billionaire-class is treating the ongoing pandemic.

Billionaires at Davos don't think COVID is a cold
In photos of 2023’s World Economic Forum- or Davos as it is commonly called, after the Swiss resort town where it annually occurs- you might not notice the HEPA filters. They’re in the background, unobtrusive and unremarked upon, quietly cleansing the air of viruses and bacteria. You wouldn’t know- not unless you asked- that every attendee was PCR teste…

The teaching shortage, meanwhile, has become extremely acute, especially in southern US States. If only there were a solution… like creating better social infrastructures and support nets, and paying teachers a living wage.

"Too many authors to cite? 
No Problem et al"

I used to argue with a friend about the problems with “offset” programs designed to reduce global warming. Now, I don’t need to argue anymore because offset programs are not just worthless… they might actually be making the global situation worse. It’s almost like capitalism is really bad at resource management, ecosystem stability, and general morality.

There’re also some bad things happening in the U.K. due to conservatives, and terrible anti-strike legislation. Yikes!

Sorry, this section has been a bit of a downer this week, you guys! C’est la vie. But, I’ll try to add in more cute and funny things next week.

Here’s a cool note to end on. For the first time in 50,000 years, a comet will be passing close to Earth. The last time this beauty made this transition, Neanderthals were still around. I highly recommend finding someplace to go and view it in the next week! If I get the chance, I’ll head out and take pictures (I need to get a telescope one of these darned days!).

My life

I enjoyed some lovely socialization this week! One of my friends has finally convinced me to play Minecraft, so we’ve been having a good time once a week with that. It’s so important to build rest and relaxation into your block-scheduled life.

On Friday, a friend treated us to a delightful home-cooked dinner, which turned the whole day around for me. I’d been feeling a bit stressed all day, and spending time laughing and conversing around the table, full of good food, was precisely the antidote I needed.

Then, on Saturday, we celebrated my Mom’s birthday with one of her friends—a woman who is 92 years old. Some of the stories she told were fascinating; she literally remembers a time when most of the communities in the area were still being built.

Saturday also saw the eve of Lunar New Year! Do you celebrate? If so, tell me what your traditions are! I cooked a 5-spice and soy chicken, and sides of black bean Chinese broccoli, hoisin bok choy, rice, and a pork bun.

This week marks the start of my full MLIS course load, so I imagine that I’ll be a little busy trying to tackle it all. I also have meetings related to my internship for EveryLibrary, as we press along with our Fight for the First project. I’m also revitalizing the Socrates Cafe on Medium publication, and bringing on another volunteer editor to help share the load—that’s exciting!

As I mentioned earlier, what I want to do most is get into my creative writing more, so I’m going to try to start at least reading through my story every morning. A low-key entry point that should help me make the habit stick.

The last holiday of the month is Burns’ Night! I have to figure out how to make haggis. I may just go for a vegetarian version, lol.

How has your week been? Tell me in the comments!

Until next week… go easy, and if you can’t go easy, go as easy as you can.


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