Friday, May 06, 2016

Weekend Reading: The Oww, My Neck Hurts Edition

This morning, I put my hands up to my head to wash my hair, and something went SPASM in my neck/upper back, and OWWWWWW. This sucks. I never used to have problems with my back, but I've had something like this happen at least three times in the last 12 months. I think this means I'm getting old?

Anyway, I won't let a little pain keep me from posting my weekend links. But they might be shorter than usual.

First of all, I want to show you the cover of the next book I'm publishing, Don't Call It Bollywood, by Margaret E. Redlich. It will be out on June 1.

I'd usually link to the Annorlunda web page for it, but I'm in the process of upgrading the Annorlunda website, so I'll have to link to the Facebook post about it, instead.

Pre-orders start next week. I'm also still signing up people to be advance readers for this book. In addition, I'm planning to do a "watch-along" on Twitter. I'm a newbie to Hindi film, so I'll get Margaret to pick a movie for us to watch, and then we'll live tweet it with a hashtag I come up with. If you're interested in participating in that, you can also sign up on the advance readers form, and I'll send you a free e-copy of the book. Or you can just watch this space for an announcement of when the watch-along will be, and join in!

The website redesign is coming along, and should be ready in time for the pre-order period. I'm not doing anything drastic, but now that I have several books and a better idea of what I'm doing, it is time to update the placeholder site I put up when I started out.

OK, moving on to the links:

Obama gives the best speeches. Here is an excerpt of a speech he gave in Flint on the need for government. I hope that whatever he does post-White House, he still gives a lot of speeches.

I never would have guessed Lindsey Graham would be the one with a backbone, but there it is. I'm watching the rest of the Republican party fail this particular test with sadness.

Trump clinching the Republican nomination split my Twitter feed between people freaking out that he would win and people sure that he couldn't win. Like I said on Twitter, I come down on "the math's against him, but anything is possible" side. Ultimately, I don't think panic or complacency are a good response. I think it is time to step and do something:

I'll be donating money to Hillary's campaign, for a start. I'm thinking about what else I can do.

I know that there are people who really don't like Hillary, both on the left and the right. For those people, I offer this assessment from a sad Republican who is still going to do the right thing. To my Republican friends who find it in their hearts to vote for Hillary: I promise that if the Democrats every nominate someone as dangerously ill-suited to be President as Donald Trump is, I will take a deep breath and vote for whatever unpalatable (to me) but not dangerous candidate the Republicans (or whoever replaces them?) nominates.

As evidence, I offer the fact that I signed the petition to recall my last mayor, who was a Democrat, even though I suspected that would mean I'd get a new mayor whose policies I liked a lot less. I did, but at least he says he won't support Trump.

That's enough politics.

I suspect this idea for renting space in communal living arrangements around the world will get some grief from some quarters, but I think it is a pretty good idea, and actually know some people who would have been good candidates to use this service a few years ago.

This post from Laura Vanderkam is a good reminder to question the spin people put on the data... Also, mornings are generally pretty laid back around here (combination of early rising kids and late starting school), and while I sometimes wish I could sleep in longer, I think I prefer the low stress mornings. I've been experimenting with ways to capture more of the time for my own purposes, too. Still, if someone asked me if I'd use the hashtag #blessed to describe my mornings, I'd laugh at them. I don't think I'd use that hashtag to describe anything about my life, really.

Here's a good post about why you want bleached cake flour.

Here's a good article about the differences between the food foodies talk about and the food the rest of us make.

Happy weekend, everyone. I think I'm going to go collapse on a heating pad now.


  1. First things first, I love your posts, especially the weekend reading. You're awesome.

    Secondly, you really don't feel like anything in your life is blessed? Really? I feel so blessed and grateful every day. Most recently when my good friend was telling me about her trip to South America and the situation of some of the native young women, who usually have no opportunity for education or advancement. Or when I think about my healthy kids, kind husband, waterproof house, ability to afford food... I'm super blessed. And sure, some of that is a result of good life choices, but a lot of it is chance. Grateful feelings lead to contentment, for me. I love that song from White Christmas that goes, "fall asleep counting your blessings."

    1. I'm quite happy and love my life, and do feel very fortunate. But I would not use the word "blessed" because that has a religious connotation that makes no sense in my own worldview. That was sort of my point- I have laid back mornings that I rather like, but if someone got me to answer a survey and asked if I would describe them with the hashtag "#blessed" I'd answer no. And probably laugh, because I cannot imagine ever using that hashtag.

  2. Anonymous10:02 AM

    Regarding bollywood movies, here are few suggestions from recent ones to try, my non-Indian husbands has liked them.
    1. Kapoor & sons, 2. Piku, 3. Queen, 4. Haider, 5. Bajirao Mastani (this one is a typical drama but well made).

  3. Regarding your back, I started having significant, nearly daily back problems for no apparent reason. I thought, like you, it was just age. Then, we got a new mattress and pillows and the problem went away nearly overnight. Have you found your back problems are correlated with where you sleep (I realized what my problem might be after sleeping in a hotel for a few nights)?

    1. DITTO ON THE MATTRESS. If you're not a regular flipper, start flipping (once a month or so). If you've had the mattress for ~10 years or more, get a new one.

      Also I had a pair of shoes that gave me joint pain higher up. The body is weirdly inter-connected.

    2. Hmmm, it IS getting close to time for a new mattress. Another thing on the to do list...

      I think my shoes are good. I don't really wear anything but comfy shoes these days.

      What seems to keep my back and neck happiest is if I do yoga regularly, specifically yoga that stretches my hips. So yeah, it is all connected.


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