Friday, October 31, 2014

Weekend Reading: The Happy (Halloween) Edition

It is Halloween, which means that I got almost no work done, because I had two Halloween parades to attend. But I am not complaining, because a colleague told me her kids have decided they are too old for Halloween and thinking about the fact that someday my kids will say that to me made me sad. I don't dress up, but I love to see the kids all dressed up. My daughter's K-8 school has a Halloween parade that everyone participates in, so I guess I can look forward to a lot more years of costumes- but I suspect at some point, my kids will tell me they don't really want me to come watch the parade.

So I went to both parades this year (our last one ever at day care and the elementary school one) and I got all misty-eyed at the cute kids like I always do. I have a 5 year old Elsa and a 7 year old detective this year. There were three Elsas at day care, and too many Elsas to count at the elementary school parade. But they were all awesome, and anyone who makes fun of the fact that so many little girls want to be Elsa needs to grow a heart, because the little girls all clearly loved their costumes. From what I saw today, I'd say first grade is peak Elsa, so anyone playing the "drink whenever Elsa comes to the door" drinking game tonight will be getting very drunk in the early part of the evening, and then will have time to sober up as the older kids come by.

Because of the awesomeness that is little kids on Halloween, I'm in the mood for happy things, so my links will be mostly happy stories, although some may have a dark overtone.

For instance, my first link is Arthur Chu's wonderful post about meeting Felicia Day, and GamerGate. It really is a great article. Go read it. Chu and Day both come across as really good people, and Chu has some very insightful points about how geek culture is changing due to things like GamerGate. Those angry troll dudes have no idea what they are destroying, they really don't.

Laralyn McWilliams wrote a really great piece about the lack of women in game development, and has been calmly and rationally answering the idiotic comments ever since. (I'm calling this happy because Laralyn so clearly ROCKS. But yeah, I know, it is a stretch.)

Here's a good piece about how we may be repeating the mistakes of the past in college computer science courses and reducing diversity in the field further. Oops. That one was not happy at all. So here, enjoy the comments on the Sexy PhD costume.

Here's some happy news about Ebola: it looks like they might be starting to get the outbreak under control in Liberia. If this trend holds, it is very good news indeed.

Also: this story about a mother and her brand new baby surviving Ebola made me so happy. I really, really wish we'd stop freaking out and instituting pointless quarantines here, and focus more on how to get better treatment to all Ebola victims in West Africa, so that we could have more happy stories like this one.

One of my favorite Twitter friends, who I think I've "known" since our kids were tiny and we were both hanging out in AskMoxie's comment section, has a book of poems coming out soon and a spruced up author website! Go check it out.

What could be happier than cute animals and cute babies? So here are some beautiful rabbits.

Here's Moon Cat:

Here's a cat staring at something:

If you have somehow managed to miss seeing Ruth Baby Ginsberg, here she is in all her awesomeness:

I'll end with some requests:

1. If you are on tumblr, either follow my Crappy Things I Made to Stop the Whining tumblr or post the link to your blog in the comments. I am looking for more tumblrs to follow! If you don't like crappy toys made out of cardboard, you could also follow my Tungsten Hippo tumblr. I'll follow back from there, too.

2. If you are on tumblr and are willing to help me spread the word about Petunia, the Girl Who Was NOT a Princess, reblog this post I made about it. Bonus: if you do that, you can enter the raffle to win a free copy of the book, a t-shirt, or a button. If you aren't on tumblr, sharing that post or the release day post via your favorite social media network would be hugely appreciated (and also worthy of a raffle entry). Just remember to drop by the release day post to enter the raffle.

3. I could use some more Amazon reviews of Petunia, and some more Amazon and/or blog reviews of Navigating the Path to Industry. If you'd be willing to do either of those things in exchange for an electronic copy of the relevant book, let me know, either in the comments or via email (wandsci at gmail dot com). Now that I have a print version of Navigating the Path to Industry available, I'm also considering doing a GoodReads giveaway- I'll keep you posted about that.

Happy Halloween, everyone!

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