Book: Inconspicuous Consumption

There are plenty of thoroughly researched books about the dismal fate of our environment. Many focus on a certain topic (changing weather patterns, melting ice, ocean acidification, global reliance on oil, etc).

These books can be intimidating: I care about protecting the Earth, but I don’t know all that much about how climate influences weather, or what impact different kinds of fuel and energy have on my daily life, or why, exactly, food waste is bad. Sometimes these books can be too didactic, not sharing the elementary science behind these forces, or have a motive warped by politics.

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I Appropriated My Partner’s “Oy!”

My partner and I come from very different worlds. She was born and raised in Russia into her teen years. I resided at the same address in New Jersey until I was 25.

As a result, we have some different mannerisms. I strongly articulate my words, which started as a way to shun any formation of a Jersey accent. My partner, K (as I’ll call her), has a hard time making the English words “shirt” and “short” sound different.

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Book: The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna

Some of the best books I’ve read I can actually barely remember. I can more readily recall how they made me feel.

The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna (2019, Ecco Press), a debut novel by Juliet Grimes,  fits in that category. Easily the best book I’ve read so far this year, it has stayed on my mind since I read it in March. It was the kind of novel that left me sad when I reached the last page, because I had no more of the story to enjoy.

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The Romance of Paper Cups

I think there’s romance in many small, simple pleasures in life. Like warm towels right out of the dryer, fresh notebooks, the sun shining on a potted plant, and fresh cups of coffee.

Coffee is the one I’m focusing on today, because I have an embarrassing habit… I keep the paper cups I collect from coffee shop visits, bring them home, rinse and reuse them.

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A Great Podcast That Reconsiders the Past

I have been listening to the You’re Wrong About… podcast incessantly for weeks. I gave it a chance after learning about it from Leslie Stephens (a writer for the Cupcakes & Cashmere blog) earlier this summer, and have since downloaded almost every episode.

Co-hosts Michael Hobbes and Sarah Marshall dropped their first episodes in May 2018. They are incredibly smart and engaging hosts who guide listeners through a reinvestigation of people or social events from the past with a current perspective. Ultimately, they aim to uncover what media got “wrong.” Topics have included the obesity epidemic, Roe v. Wade, shaken baby syndrome, Anna Nicole Smith, and sexting.

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