Friday, May 13, 2011

Weekend Reading: The Fictional Characters Edition

First, some blog business: Blogger says that they'll be restoring the comments that have gone missing since they had to rollback a failed upgrade this week. As someone who has had to rollback upgrades herself, I'm a bit sympathetic to their plight- although it does seem that something went catastrophically wrong and that perhaps their rollback plan wasn't quite up to snuff. Regardless, if they can't get the comments back, I'll go in and restore them by hand- I have them all in my email.

I've also noticed that the search feature on my blog doesn't seem to be working since I switched to having my own domain. I might get around to troubleshooting that- maybe I just need to somehow tell Blogger to rebuild an index? But I suspect I am the only one who ever used it. I used it to find specific old posts, but honestly, plain Google search is working just fine for that, so it doesn't seem like something I want to spend a lot of time on- particularly since I have long term plans to move off of Blogger and do lots of snazzy things with my blog. Those may not get implemented anytime soon, though- it all depends on whether Petunia's sleep stays as good as it has been lately or goes back to the crap state we were in. If she's sleeping, I'm willing to stay up a little later at night to futz with my blog. If she's not, I just want to get into bed as soon as I can!

Anyway... on with today's links. I hadn't checked in with the Parenting Blog (see, it is not just your blog I've been ignoring... I've been busy!) so I didn't see her post about the effects of believing in fictional characters (like the Easter Bunny) until well past the time when we caved and went along with the Easter Bunny story that Pumpkin had heard at day care. Luckily, the conclusion seems to be that these sorts of fictions do no harm, and that kids are pleased, not mad when they discover the truth- which probably won't surprise anyone.

It seems that fictional characters are doing a bit of harm in Russia and Ukraine- they are arguing with each other about maps showing the "homes" of various fairy tale characters. Apparently, these sites are big tourist draws, so the stakes are high. Still, I couldn't help but giggle at the idea of two nations getting so worked up about fairy tales- until I thought about how upset Americans would probably get if Canada suddenly decided that Johnny Appleseed had lived in Canada.

A lot of people are also upset about the "plight" of the modern man, so it was refreshing to come across (via @lvanderkam's Twitter feed) an article from Dan Mulhern arguing that now is a great time to be a man. Of course, he's writing from the upper middle class point of view, but I think some of his points about how our concept of manhood needs to change are valid across all economic classes.

Finally, I have some updates:
That's it for this week. Happy reading!

1 comment:

  1. The differences in K-12 schools across so many dimensions is stunning and shouldn't be. Before my kid was born I did a lot of volunteer tutoring in schools all over the country. Back in college I did paid tutoring both for Upward Bound and for kids in the swank local district. Differences in teaching quality, homework amounts, textbook age, college advice, etc.; all stunningly different.

    I don't know what can be done, but education, food, and small animals are where we spend our charitable dollars.

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