Imbolc, the Lunar New Year, and Winter Slips Away

Odin's highlights from the first week of February!

Imbolc, the Lunar New Year, and Winter Slips Away
Full design by me using Adobe Express. Cross by Culnacreann - Own work, CC BY 3.0

Hello, world!

This has been another jam-packed week for me (is there ever any other kind)? I have some chronic health conditions that lend themselves to rather high degrees of pain, quite sporadically, and was so effected this week. Yet, despite this, I managed to get a lot done for both my personal projects and my MLIS courses.

I’m excited to share my articles from this week. You’ll notice the obvious shift toward content focusing on information science, a necessary change for much of my more scholarly work, since so much of my reading now has to be done within the field. I’m still managing to slip in some material about films and pop-culture, though. Remember, these links (when clicked directly from my newsletter) bypass Medium’s paywall!

I also have a little update video from The Unenlightened Generalists to share! No MLIS video this week, but I hope to have one next week for you all.

And, while I know it’s considered “bad form” to send off a newsletter jam packed with “what I discovered on the web!”, I do have a pretty hearty section of interesting and fun content this week for all of you.

As always, I love reading your comments and hearing your thoughts, so please share this newsletter so more people can find it, and leave your comments so I can interact with you!

A day in a generalist’s life

January marked our first month of holiday observances! Today, as a matter of fact, is the end of Lunar New Year, so I hope you are all enjoying time with your families and ushering in a year of good luck and joy.

My creative writing efforts improved somewhat this week, eking back a little time from my schedule. Not as much as I would like, but I’m pleased that more progress on my story has indeed been made.

I’ve also been devouring the Temeraire series by Naomi Novik, and that’s lent me some solace during bouts of my aforementioned chronic pain.

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about how I can organize my life better, and improve the likelihood of fulfilling my goals and dreams. This effort is made all the more difficult by our rather vile punitive-capitalistic society, which endeavors every effort against individual comfort and self-betterment. Still, I believe I make headway every day.

I’ve also been writing a little poetry again, which I am thrilled by. I used to write free verse, but that lost its interest for me, and while I admire the haiku form, I haven’t felt called by it lately. However, other forms exist, aha! In these, I’ve found my poetic efforts rewarded. Perhaps another chapbook awaits me in a year or so?

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Articles this week

  • The 16 Most Underrated Romance Films of the 1980s 1980s romance movies for every mood. Delight in the passion, the humor, and the drama.

    • Who doesn’t love a good romance? Actually, there are far too many men (especially men) who fail to see the genre’s gold, and our society harbors a popular reluctance against male emotionality. Men are taught to make jokes about somber, serious, and romantic moments, and are given subtle social incentives to avoid reverence in their speech and thinking. Personally, I think this is much to the detriment of our gender, and I hope I can convince more men to join me in the enjoyment of romantic media.

  • Harnessing Your Metadata For Note-Taking and Profit Notion, Obsidian — the tools don’t matter as much as the information retrieval design.

    • This is both practical and philosophic, offering a brief overview of designing systems for information storage (which include your own notes!), as well as some preliminary thoughts on how this can be accomplished.

  • Library Censorship Considerations of the health of minors becomes a conservative weapon of choice.

    • A purely philosophic thought piece without a central argument. My goal is to highlight two things: the central complexity and difficulty of the issue, and the danger of any attempts to put into effect laws that establish the precedent of book banning (even when there appear to be good grounds).

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World Wide Web

The first of my fun shares is this piece about Takishima Mika, a 91-year-old woman who is also a body-builder and personal trainer. She’s an inspiration for what an elderly life might look like, as our country far too frequently relegates the elderly to the background cloud of the infirm (and therefore out of our minds). This is also due to the pervasive health problems in the United States, aided dramatically by our terrible for-profit health system… but that’s a topic for a different time.

For something purely fun, let’s look at this thought-piece regarding the morality of shopping cart returns.

May be an image of text

On a more serious note, we can explore this lawsuit that Microsoft wants thrown out. They’ve been using open-source code to create limited, for-profit services, and haven’t been meeting the requirements of the code’s copyright. Sadly, inherent problems with how GitHub handles open-source code might allow Microsoft to win.

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“Jumping” on from there, why not take a look at the incredible work Boston Dynamics is doing with its robots. I’ll just leave this here as a fun tidbit without diving into the serious surrounding issues, because there is one part of me that just plain thinks this technology is awesome.

Another serious piece, this examination of how massive profits are being made on the back of climate catastrophe. If it doesn’t make your blood boil to think of how these so many monstrous leeches are downing barrels of cash by capitalizing on fear and misery, I don’t know why you’re reading my newsletter.

But, finally, this heartwarming excerpt from a comic illustrated by The Oatmeal, one of my favorite irreverently-reverent comic book artists.

May be a cartoon of text that says "have hard time taking compliments. Then don't take them. Borrow them. them Tuck away. for the next person who needs one. Written ames Miller @ASmallFiction Illustrated The Oatmeal"

Next week

I cannot say for certain what the next week holds, save that I shall be continuing a deep plunge into the waters of my MLIS. I expect things to even out a bit by the end of February, at least in so much as I will have become used to the new workload.

I hope to have a video from my MLIS journey for you next week, and I want to dig deeper into my own creative writing. If I can get those two extra things accomplished, I’ll feel right as rain.

Until then, my friends… go easy. And, if you can’t go easy, then go as easy as you can.

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