What made me think — March 11, 2018

Sunday Morning Delight while walking the dog

What I was reading:

Important talk/manifesto/insights: No one’s coming up. It’s up to us. “My final point is this: no one will tell us or give us permission to do these things. There is no higher organizing power working to put systemic changes in place. There is no top-down way of nudging the arc of technology toward one better aligned with humanity.

It starts with all of us.”

You are the media you eat. Faris makes the case for a media diet pyramid. “Everything is relative, but addiction advice offers a simple rule of thumb: The media pyramid is a perforce abstract and subjective attempt to suggest we should be mindful about getting a balanced media diet, and what that might look like.”

Remembering my mother — the woman who taught me to love. “The connection of child to parent is deeper than conviction or memory, formed even before the establishment of a self. Beneath even the strongest faith, the loss of a mother or father leaves a pit, a void. Whether religion is true or not, at this point, Lazarus remains in the grave. The woman who took my hand is in the cold ground. And, in one deep, unrecoverable way, I am alone.

Well, maybe that is morbid. And incomplete. I am blessed with many kinds of love in my life. But losing its original form is not a minor thing. It makes the universe feel colder.

And it brings to mind the experience my boys will inevitably have. I apologize in advance that there will be so many boxes of books to deal with. But I hope you will know how much your awkward, reticent father loved you — lavishly, totally, more strongly than anything you could do to forfeit it. And if I succeed in making this clear, it is because my mother showed me how love could be done.”

What I listened to:

  • 99% Invisible has a wonderful episode about Bijlmer (City of the Future). Really, it’s about well-meaning human beings creating terrible solutions for people. An architectural disaster that ended with a plane crash. The area is still around but has been changed dramatically but continues to feel foreign to Amsterdam.
  • I’m a huge fan of Seth Godin. Own all this books, saw him speak numerous times and read his daily blog post. And I was excited to discover he launched a podcast. And, you know what? It’s not that good. It felt like he was reading his posts/books instead of delivering a lively show. Knowing him, things will go better and I will stick with him. For now.
  • Change Agent, a new podcast from the NYTimes launched this week and I binged on all five episodes. Especially loved “Boy Problem”, the story of an 8o-year old widow who meets a new man, loses him and wants to find ways to get her passion for life back. And, yes, she does.
  • She used 23andMe and I found out her father wasn’t her father. It gets complicated from there but she saw her father die and people told her” I think that you’re the person he felt comfortable dying in front of.” Is there a better compliment?

What I watched:

  • Bitter rivals: Iran and Saud Arabia. Confused by the Middle East, Shiites and Sunnis, the whole mess? Watch this documentary. Frontline continues to be the best documentary series in the US.
  • Only the brave. Yes, the film worships firefighters (“All men are created equal…then, a few become firefighters.”) Still, it’s a great flick based on real events and it makes you appreciate the hard work these heroes do.
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