Friday link roundup 2/24

How the font Comic Sans helps people with dyslexia read more easily.

How opening your car door a certain way – as many people in the Netherlands do – may prevent bicycle accidents.

On how horses can read human facial expressions.

A Muslim woman who worked in the White House during the Obama administration and stayed on briefly after Trump was inaugurated talks about the transition and her experiences.

NASA and European astronomers say that they’ve discovered 7 Earth-sized planets that orbit a dwarf star.

An interview with the filmmakers who made a show called RISE, a series about the indigenous resistance movement, past and present.

Friday link roundup 2/17

A 12-year-old is publishing an activism guide for children and teens.

Finland is in the process of implementing changes in their educational system, which will result in interdisciplinary classes and an elimination of school subjects for students ages 16 and up.

On yesterday’s “Day Without Immigrants” strike/protests.

Explore the digital archive of radical and activist posters.

What famous novels look like stripped of everything but punctuation.

Watch baby sloths have a conversation.

Friday link roundup 2/10

According to Emily’s List, since the election in November, more than 4,000 women have said they want to run for office.

From the Huffington Post: 13 free online mental health resources.

#NeverthelessShePersisted: Examples of women who have stood up for what they believe in and persisted. Since Elizabeth Warren was silenced in the Senate earlier this week, “Nevertheless, she persisted” has become a rallying cry for those who oppose the current administration’s policies.

Students from a vocational high school are building tiny homes for flood victims in West Virginia.

An unusual court sentence for a group of teenagers who wrote racist and sexist graffiti on a historic schoolhouse in Virginia:  a reading list and book reports that may help them gain awareness about diversity, discrimination, and history.

To add some cuteness to your Friday: In this video,  a cat interrupts a weather forecast broadcast to request cuddles.

Friday link roundup 2/3

Tennessee governor seeks free community college education for all adults.

Bill Nye [the Science Guy] and astronaut Buzz Aldrin participated in a fashion show.

The Keller, Texas Parks & Recreation Department is seeking out a graffiti artist who has been painting pictures of animals throughout the city.

Jess Herbst, mayor of New Hope, Texas, has just come out as transgender.

Inspiration for today’s movements: A look back to the 1960s when four college students launched a new wave of Civil Rights protests.

This Danish TV ad encourages people to step out of their boxes and communities and see what they have in common.

Sally Yates, former acting attorney general who spoke out against the Trump administration’s travel ban, has been nominated for the JFK Profile in Courage Award.

Evolving perspective (stream-of-consciousness poem)

I began this soon after the election in November, and it’s been sitting in my drafts folder for a while. I finished it this past weekend.

**
We categorize and decide what is and should be
these broad sweeping labels cross borders and state lines
dividing this from that, us from them,
and we find ourselves pointing our fingers at each other

We go on defense
I’m not like that, I’m not like them,
It’s you who is pointing the finger, not me

Maybe all our fingers are pointing at someone
Maybe we want an explanation, a rationale,
someone to applaud, someone to blame

When we generalize,
we can cut others down to

less than life-size.

It’s hard to be part of the problem and
part of the solution,
our cells are divided and our selves are
torn and
our communities are split into
many
different

pieces.

Sometimes, we turn away from
each other even
when we literally stand
side-by-side.

I don’t know
if i can tell you that
it’s always best to turn to each other
when we’ve got our boxing gloves on

I want to say:
Put the gloves down first, then listen.

What if we aren’t really fighting each other
but a system
that keeps us separate, apart
the words unify and compromise
don’t go very deep
when they’re used to
pacify, console,
cajole, silence.

We are a nation of many people,
interests, and opinions.

We are a nation of many communities,
individuals, identities.

Perhaps we have many definitions of what
freedom means,
whether freedom opens doors for free thought
or guarantees security
and safety from what?
the world outside our neighborhoods
an existential threat
a real life danger
the story changes with each teller

I want to be realistic without losing
my idealism, but it’s hard to live the
everyday reality where rights are
peeled away, day by day.

I tell myself to breathe,
take care,
take small steps.

Another day, another headline, with
more fears brought to light.
I watch the protests, the brave souls
on the front lines

I want to say
I am ready and willing to fight.
I see people comment about
the best way to stand up:
what and when and how and where…

I pick my battles, follow my own rhythm.
I pick up my pen
and begin.

Friday link roundup 1/27

In terms of activism, this article from Everyday Feminism explains why marching isn’t the only way.

Making history:  Museums from all around the world have been collecting signs from the women’s marches.

Have an opinion about an issue, and have difficulty with the idea of calling your senators and representatives? This post gives tips for people with social anxiety. I personally think it could be helpful for anyone who might need to reserve energy for these types of things.

Want to write a letter to Congress? This site gives tips on how to write an effective letter so that your voice is more likely to be heard.

How to Stay Outraged without Losing Your Mind: this post gives some good tips on how to stay aware and active under the current political climate without burning out. Self-care and occasionally unplugging are part of this, too.

A study shows that girls as young as six may already have gendered beliefs about intelligence.

Thanks to recent rain and show, California’s drought is finally coming to an end.

My daily “what I did” list

One of the biggest myths I have is that I’m not doing enough.

It’s also very untrue. While I don’t have a typical 9-to-5 work schedule, I keep myself busy. There are many things I’m working on and towards, and I’m rarely bored.

So, as part of my routine of unwinding and getting ready for bed, I’ve started doing a “what I did today” list. It helps me see what I’ve done and accomplished throughout the day. I also sometimes write notes to track my anxiety levels, sensory triggers, and moods so I can look back and see if there’s a pattern.

I suppose I could call this a form of a bullet journal (more information on bullet journals here ), which is like a combination of a planner and a journal/diary. Overall, it’s a method of writing things down, whether it’s goals or thoughts, in short, bullet-point form. Before starting this practice, I didn’t spend much time researching bullet-journaling, but it is a something that I’ve heard that many people enjoy. .

Here’s an example from my journal from a few weeks ago (I made slight edits to put it more into context):

  • Took L (husband) to work
  • Brief call with Mom
  • Nia
  • Lunch
  • Got mail and some sunshine
  • Took short nap/reset
  • ~ 3 hours proofreading practice
  • ~ 1 hour workbook punctuation practice
  • Made dinner
  • Picked L up
  • Did Dishes
  • Took one online survey
  • Nia song review (listened and watched, then tried)
  • Did rhythmic movement and reflex exercises

It’s sort of like writing a to-do list after the fact. It gives me perspective. It helps me think of other things I might need to focus on in the days ahead. It helps me value the small, day-to-day activities more, such as making a meal or having a conversation with my love.

At the end of the day, when I ask myself, “Did I do enough?”, seeing this list helps me feel more assured that the answer is, without question, “Yes.”