Something Good

“April is the cruelest month.” ~T.S. Eliot

1. Poems from Home, “A live poetry performance and Q&A from Andrea’s home. Andrea will prioritize sharing poems aimed to comfort the spirit during dark times. Bring your questions, a cozy blanket, and your tender hearts.”

2. 27 Wildest Days video series with Laurie Wagner. FREE, with one of the best writing teachers, writers, and humans I know, offering one of the most powerful writing practices I know. “27 brand new videos that offer you a chance to create a daily writing practice on your own. Each day you’ll get a very short – under 10 minutes – video from me telling you something about Wild Writing, reading you a poem and giving you a couple of jump off lines. From there you will write on your own for 15 minutes. You don’t send me anything, it’s not a class, just a chance for you to lay it down and get real on the page.”

3. Do You Need a Ride? One of my favorite podcasts, one of the things I can trust to make me laugh, and they just released their first at-home quarantine edition. “Comedians Chris Fairbanks and Karen Kilgariff shuttle their guests to or from the airport, somewhat dangerously, in a mobile sound studio (a car).”

4. Four FREE online retreats with the Open Heart Project. “During this time of self-quarantine, the Open Heart Project will offer four free online meditation retreats, beginning April 25th. Each retreat will be from 9a-3p ET. The full day will be recorded for those who cannot attend live. Each retreat will be led by a different teacher who will also teach on a particular theme. We are really excited to be able to offer a chance to get together in community to practice meditation and discuss the spiritual path. We will take time out of our normal busy-ness to reconsider who we are, what is important, and how to re-center our highest priorities within everyday life.”

5. Righteous Babe Radio. From Ani DiFranco, “sharing the music of my brilliant friends and collaborators…nerding out on revered influences…amplifying the sounds and words of my political and cultural inspirations.”

6. A great set of questions to contemplate, from Jamie Ridler‘s most recent newsletter. “Whether our lives have changed dramatically or not much at all, we are moving in a different world, at least for a time. How do we move with it?…There is so much that is out of our control right now – but not everything. Every day there are moments of choice, moments to express our agency in this chaotic world.”

Who am I in this new day-to-day?
Who do I want to be?
What does my body need?
What does my heart need?
What is meaningful to me?
How can I find it here?
What am I mourning?
What do I hope to return to?
What do I hope to never return to?
How do I want to spend this time?

7. #NoBodyIsDisposable. “Disabled people, fat people, elders, and people with AIDS or other illnesses are being specifically targeted for denial of life-saving care during care rationing. These triage policies disproportionately target people of color, poor folks, immigrants, queer and trans folks, incarcerated and homeless folks, and others already considered disposable by capitalist, white supremacist society. We say NO!”

8. This Gorgeous Portrait Series Celebrates Older Trans And Gender-Nonconforming People.

9. How to Cope with This Crisis When You’re a Highly Sensitive Person. “Basically, right now, it’s all about emotional regulation — doing whatever healthy thing you need to do in order to keep your worries in check.”

10. Foreword from Anne Helen Petersen. Because, this:

Writing this from the middle of the pandemic, it’s become clear that COVID-19 is the great clarifier. It clarifies what and who in your life matters, what things are needs and what are wants, who is thinking of others and who is thinking only of themselves. It has clarified that the workers dubbed “essential” are, in truth, treated as expendable, and it has made decades of systemic racism — and resultant vulnerability to the disease — indelible. It has highlighted the ineptitude of our current federal leadership, the dangers of longterm, cultivated mistrust of science, and the ramifications of allowing the production of medical equipment to be run like a business where profits matter above all else. Our medical system is broken. Our relief program is broken. Our testing capability is broken. America is broken, and we, too, along with it.

11. Jason Isbell: John Prine Taught Me to Stay Vulnerable on The New York Times.

12. Fiona Apple’s Fetch the Bolt Cutters Is the Album She Deserved to Make All Along. In related news, Allow Fiona Apple to Reintroduce Herself and The Story Behind Every Track on Fetch the Bolt Cutters and Fiona Apple’s Art of Radical Sensitivity and The Wit, Wisdom And Awe Of Fiona Apple’s ‘Fetch The Bolt Cutters’.

13. Of Real Life and New Normals on Rita’s Notebook. Because, this: “The only thing that feels sure to me is a future that is different from the past. Not in every way – but also, in every way. If I think of my life as a set of systems – work, home, health, money, relationships – the foundations remain the same (at least for now), but each of them is also so changed that it feels as if there can be no true going back to what they once were.”

14. The new abnormal, Paul Jarvis’s recent dispatch. Everything about this:

In the beginning of this pandemic, I was very nervous about how long it’d take to get back to “normal” with business and the economy.

Now I’m thinking that I’m not so sure I want things to go back to economic normal. Let me explain: normal, for the most part with the global economy and big business has been kind of a burning dumpster fire. It’s been ruining our planet and tearing through finite resources, putting profit over people, and creating a vast chasm of a divide between those at the top and everyone else.

When you ask someone, generally, what they feel holds the most value for in their lives, most say things like: connection, family, friendship, community, etc. But if you look at how big business worked, it was money, power, fame, success, greed, etc, that dominated.

So what if we worked to better align ourselves, our actions, and our companies, to be closer to what we actually say is important?

We’ve prioritized gaining power over other people for too long. Maybe this pandemic can show us that there’s more power in being connected to and helping all people instead. Maybe once we recover and heal from this virus we can work to rebuild and heal a new economy with different values. Maybe I’m an idealist, but what if we put people first?

15. On predicting the future from Seth Godin.

16. #MadeForThis. Tshirt available until April 22, “All profits from this campaign will go toward the start of a fund that will allow Whole / Self Liberation to offer micro-grants to support those dreaming up and cultivating new worlds (i.e. the helpers, healers, creatives, activists, educators) as they show up for their beautiful + necessary work.”

17. This Teen Twerking With His Duck Is The Vibe We Need In These Strange Times.

18. The Great Blah Blah from Laurie Wagner. Because, this: “Of course I write this from a warm home and a job. I have the luxury of contemplation. I don’t want for the suffering of others, of course I want the curve to flatten, but what I also want is to drop into the beauty of the moment, and to stop resisting what is happening.”

19. Good stuff from Lion’s Roar: How to Free Yourself from the 7 Obsessions and 10 Tips for a Mindful Home and Life on the Edge.

20. You’ve Got Less Mail: The Postal Service Is Suffering Amid The Coronavirus.

21. Poems for the Pandemic, “Here, you’ll find seven poems Stafford has written on seven days since March 7, accompanied by photographs and videos Brooke Herbert and Beth Nakamura have made in recent weeks as the novel coronavirus came to dominate our lives.”

22. The Daily, a meditation practice membership from Adreanna Limbach. “Just like clockwork, you’ll receive a DAILY 20 minute meditation video from from one of our core contributing teachers + thoughtful tips on how to integrate your practice into every nook and cranny of your life. Because we all know that insight develops through repetition and consistency is KEY. Practices are designed to be accessible to both newbie meditators, and long-time practitioners who are looking for ways to keep their practice fresh.”

23. Being Broken In Half (But Wanting To Be Whole) from Chuck Wendig on Terrible Minds.

24. Why Introverts Are the Leaders We Need in Troubled Times.

25. Are We All in This Together? on The New York Times. Because, this:

The moral and civic renewal we need requires that we resist the anguished but misconceived debate now emerging about how many lives we should risk for the sake of restarting the economy…The real question is not when but what: What kind of economy will emerge from the crisis? Will it be one that continues to create inequalities that poison our politics and undermine any sense of national community? Or will it be one that honors the dignity of work, rewards contributions to the real economy, gives workers a meaningful voice and shares the risks of ill health and hard times?

We need to ask whether reopening the economy means going back to a system that, over the past four decades, pulled us apart, or whether we can emerge from this crisis with an economy that enables us to say, and to believe, that we are all in this together.

26. Make bad art, too from Austin Kleon.

27. Recalculating… Finding your bearings in a crisis.

28. Wisdom from Susanna Conway’s latest Love Letter:

There’s been a lot of chat about a “new normal” but I prefer to look at this as a new RHYTHM. New normal makes it sound like things will never go back to how they were — and for some of us they may not, I absolutely acknowledge that — but for the majority things will return to what we had before. My hope is that we’ll choose to keep some of these new rhythms we’re creating. I’m finding new rhythms in this dance that are truly bringing me joy. And they’re simple things like discovering all the flowers in my neighbourhood. Juicing fruit and veg every day. Afternoon baths to reset my system. My renewed love of baked potatoes! Everything feels filled with so much more reverence as I do my best to sink into the acceptance of what is. This is my new rhythm and I know it will serve me long after this storm has passed. And it WILL pass.

29. A Moment In Denver: Healthcare Worker Blocks Protesters. Shame on them. SHAME. This is what happens if you don’t stay home: Virginia Bishop Dies After Holding Service Amid Coronavirus Warnings. Now, Four of His Family Members Are Infected Too. The only way forward: WHO Sets 6 Conditions For Ending A Coronavirus Lockdown, although most of the protestors won’t listen because Trump halts World Health Organization funding. And in other helpful news, Is the Virus on My Clothes? My Shoes? My Hair? My Newspaper? on The New York Times. “We asked the experts to answer questions about all the places coronavirus lurks (or doesn’t). You’ll feel better after reading this.”

30. Here’s what coronavirus could mean for the future of workers’ rights. (video)

31. Flight attendant’s hilarious ‘working from home’ video goes viral.

32. Leslie Jordan Is the Baton-Twirling Comic the World Needs in a Crisis.

33. Working From Home Has Never Been Easier With This Office-Tent. I told my husband I’m buying him one of these. 🙂

34. Take a Virtual Tour Through This Famous Japanese Garden in Oregon.

35. Land O’Lakes Removes Native American Woman From Its Products on The New York Times.

2 thoughts on “Something Good

  1. lauriesuewagner

    Jilly, Jilly, Jilly,

    loving you from afar. Sending you a bear hug, my arms solidly around you, my gratitude and friendship abounding. Thank you for sharing my work. Thank you for pictures of trees and creeks and dogs and pies.

    I love you.

    xxxxxxx Laurie


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