Monthly Archives: July 2017

Something Good

Pink Queen Anne’s Lace, which I didn’t even know existed

1. Botanical light-filled loft from SF Girl by Bay. I want to spend the next week on that smushy green couch.

2. Sun salutations, sizeism, sexism and scumbaggery. “By the end of this horrible, un-yogic apology you will be lying in savasana on your floor.”

3. Let’s stop telling the lie that weight loss is our life’s work, wisdom from Melissa Toler. Because this,

My exploration into the ways that diet culture disregards our humanity has forced me to see things very differently. I have awakened to the fact that diet culture demands perfection, ignores body diversity, overrides our bodies’ natural wisdom, and as a result, undermines our autonomy. The more I explore the layers of diet culture, the more I see how we’re socialized to accept that our bodies are not our own and are intended for the consumption of others. At times it feels like simply existing is an invitation for unsolicited commentary and unwanted touch. The message that comes across to me is loud and clear: Other people’s experience of my body is more important than my own.

4. The Secret to Interpersonal Happiness from Zen Habits.

5. Think Again: ‘There is no obesity crisis’, explained by Professor Traci Mann. (video)

6. The August Break, 2017 hosted by Susannah Conway. Take one picture a day using Susannah’s prompts. A fun way to wrap up the season.

7. Why It’s No Coincidence That So Many INFJs and INFPs Are Writers.

8. Please Help Us Save Diesel!

9. Ear Hustle, the first podcast produced in prison. (video)

10. Why Mainstream Yoga is a Part of Diet Culture with Dianne Bondy. (podcast)

11. Philly’s Real-Life Superhero. Ariell Johnson is one of the first black women in the country to own a comic book shop and she’s just getting started. (video)

12. Recipes I want to try: Southwestern Sweet Potato Noodle Salad, and Avocado Desserts 4 Ways (I’d like to try these, but I’m not sure how I feel about them), and Crispy Honey-Glazed Fried Chicken (this seems like it would work really well with tofu instead of chicken), and Chocolate Crazy Cake: No Eggs, Milk or Butter.

13. I Don’t Get Weighed at the Doctor’s Office—and You Don’t Have to, Either.

14. When Ellie told her mom and dad she was a girl, they responded with nothing but love and support. (video)

15. To the cis person angrily sharing news of the Trump transgender military ban.

16. This Photographer Shoots Pet Brothers From Other Mothers And It’s Too Adorable.

17. Libraries Are the Real Punk Rock.

18. I Don’t Want to Watch Slavery Fan Fiction by Roxane Gay on The New York Times.

19. The Radical Importance Of Issa Rae’s ‘Insecure.’

20. Summer Interns: Democrat & Republican, a powerful set of contrasting images.

21. Did Rupi Kaur plagiarize parts of ‘Milk & Honey’ from this Tumblr poet?

22. A Little of Everything (When Everything Is Everything) from Jena Schwartz.

23. Women are flocking to wellness because modern medicine still doesn’t take them seriously. In related news, Mother died after paramedics accused her of faking symptoms ‘for attention.’

24. Broken Heart or Just Monday?, another sweet cartoon from Connie Sun.

25. Charismatic guru Michael Stone popularized ancient ideas, an obituary.

26. This floating farm is helping feed New York City’s poor. (video)

27. At This Point, I Don’t Care Why You Still Support This President, wisdom from John Pavlovitz.

28. This 13-year-old boy and 78-year-old man are openly gay, but their coming out stories are worlds apart. (video) “Neighbors in the world.”

29. Bangladesh’s Biggest Brothel. (video) “We go inside Bangladesh’s biggest brothel, a town where 1,500 women work as prostitutes, some as young as 10 years old.”

Day of (un)Rest

I posted this picture to Instagram yesterday, with the caption “Feeling stuck.” There is so much to do, to say, to consider, to resist. Sometimes I feel completely frozen.

I know that part of it is the overwhelm of our current political situation, and in particular a leader who is amplifying the oppression of anyone who isn’t white, cisgender, or male in a culture that already leaned that way. This past week was especially disturbing — the speech he gave at the Boy Scout Jamboree, inciting violence against people of color during a speech to a group of police, and banning transgender individuals from serving “in any capacity” in the US armed forces for the same sort of reasons that used to be used to keep women out of the military.

And it’s not just that. People I love are suffering. People I hardly know but love anyway are having a tough time. We all suffer, and in our hurt and confusion, we lash out, in ways large and small. We can get so caught up in the confusion of trying to feel okay, clinging to what we want and rejecting what we don’t, that we don’t even see the suffering we are generating all the time.

Yesterday morning, I walked past a women’s clothing store in Old Town Fort Collins with a chalkboard outside that read, “A dress should be tight enough to show you are a woman, loose enough to show you are a lady.” One might think that’s completely innocent or even cute, but if you look at it closely, it’s so harmful, oppressive, and ugly. And this from women trying to sell other women clothing! Internalized oppression is tragic — not only does the harm come from external sources, but lives inside us too.

I tried to start this morning without the noise of the news. I took Austin Kleon and Susannah Conway‘s advice and didn’t check Facebook first thing when I got up. I meditated and wrote instead. It helped a little, but the world manages to creep in anyway.

I tried to determine if I felt depressed or sad, and remembered the quote from Gloria Steinem that Susan Piver has shared before, “When you are depressed, nothing matters. When you are sad, everything does.” So, sad it is. I once heard someone suggest that if you want to know who you are here to serve, just notice what breaks your heart and you will find your purpose — but what if all of it breaks your heart? And what if you want to help everyone, fix all of it, where do you even begin?

Meghan Tonjes posted a picture on Facebook earlier today, and the caption gave me some insight into another approach, “Instead of focusing on the things and people I can’t fix, help, save, love through or give any more to, I’ve filled the entirety of my days with what I can control.” This reframe seems helpful — when I feel stuck, overwhelmed, helpless, I can ask myself “what can I control?” I tend to take too much responsibility for whatever might be happening, even though I know intellectually that there are layers and layers of conditions and circumstances working together in ways that I can’t know, can’t understand, and most certainly can’t control.

And if these strategies fail, I’m going to stare at this picture Janelle Hanchett just posted of George, because George is one of the reasons to never give up.