Friday, August 31, 2012

Weekend Reading: Another Grab Bag Edition

I took Pumpkin to her Kindergarten orientation today. It went reasonably well- she was looking a little sad and scared sitting in the crowded auditorium, but then the one other little kid we know who will be at this school showed up, also looking a little scared and sad. They grabbed hands and stood next to each other for awhile, and then settled in for the orientation. We got to meet her teacher, who only spoke Spanish to Pumpkin, as promised. Pumpkin handled that OK, but later asked if we could listen to our "teach yourself Spanish" CD. I think the reality of having a teacher who only speaks Spanish to you finally sunk in. I guess it is better that happened to her today rather than Tuesday, so that's good. The teacher seems nice. I'm sure Pumpkin will do OK.

I actually took the entire the day off today and had a "special day" with Pumpkin. I'm a bit exhausted from that... and I have to solo bedtime tonight because some friends of Hubby's are in town from New Zealand. So I think I'll just sit here and let Pumpkin watch Team Umizoomi while I write up some links for y'all to read this weekend.

I have another mishmash of links:

First, @TreeKt tweeted a link to an article in Harvard Business Review at me, about the rising number of family responsibility bias lawsuits. It is a longish article, but worth the time. There is some interesting information about maternal bias, and case stories of women who successfully sued their employers for exhibiting that bias. It is too bad that some mothers are having to resort to lawsuits to get employers to treat them fairly, but I am glad that they are winning. Perhaps enough of these suits will happen to start changing the business climate- it seems that we often need fear of a lawsuit to force a change, and then people's attitudes (partially) catch up.

I came across another good HBR article, this one via @TheMamaBee (and my own RSS reader), about how our focus on perfection and finding "the perfect X" may be undermining our search for work-life balance. Since my current favorite saying is "don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good" (from the Voltaire quote that translates to "the perfect is the enemy of the good"), this post really resonated with me.

Switching gears to the intersection of science, technology and business (one of my favorite intersections!), the San Diego Zoo has set up a new center for bioinspiration, which is taking inspiration for new technologies from biological systems. I found the article via Slashdot.

And finally, if you have somehow not seen the Google Street View screenshots artist Jon Rafman is posting, you should take a look. Fair warning, though- if you click through to his tumblr, you will waste a lot of time.

Updated to add:

Ginger's awesome post about the corrosive effect of what some people consider political discourse. The post made me glad I'm not on Facebook. Some of the comments remind me of Monty Python's famous argument sketch. Except they never look up from their computer and say, "Oh! You wanted an argument? Sorry, this is abuse." They seem to genuinely believe that hurling insults at someone is the same as arguing with them.

For anyone who hasn't seen the argument sketch, you must rectify the situation! Here, I'll help:

Also, Bad Mom Good Mom does an excellent job of explaining why it is NOT a 100 year flood.


  1. Anonymous5:38 AM

    Those google screenshots are aWESOME.

  2. Great links! About the mudslinging in politics post, I agree that name calling hardly leads anywhere. Still, I don't think everything should be discussed at all cost, for the sake of being respectful and hearing other opinions. For instance, I don't want or listen to anyone who is spewing creationist nonsense, or is vehemently anti birth control... I think there are limits to how much we can get along. Some people hold beliefs that I find completely unpalatable and the only way I can coexist or work with those people is if we never ever discuss these issues.

    1. I know what you mean. I have family with whom I must avoid discussing anything at all related to politics.

  3. I'll be curious to hear about Pumpkin's experiences. Is she still going to continue Chinese lessons?

    T starts Spanish immersion preschool next week too and I don't know how she'll take it. It's half days so hopefully not too overwhelming.

    1. Yes, we're keeping the Chinese lessons. In fact, we're going to start Petunia on them in two weeks.

      I'm sure I'll post about how the kindergarten transition goes for all of us! Good luck to T, too- but I'm sure she'll do fine.

  4. That video was utterly perfect.


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