The Truth is Out There

Monday mornings are like the moment the hot water runs out in a long shower: real, expected, and nonetheless unwelcome. Because it takes a monumental effort for me to enter the week dressed in a simulacrum of normal personhood, I like to spend the first part of the day distracting myself with ideas that make me feel new and engaged and alive. Now that I am doing these posts / emails, it is my pleasure to share some of today’s with you.  —LJ

ASS OUT OF ME AND U
The class politics of decluttering
Problems we don’t really want to solve

PLACES
North Korea looks like a Wes Anderson movie, or Wes Anderson movies look like North Korea
A curated journey through Atlanta’s history
Explore the Cincinnati panorama of 1848
Turkmenistan: where the cities are beautiful and empty and the neighborhoods are crowded and cluttered

LITERATURE MAKES IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO WAKE UP IN THE MORNING
Essays by poet Kenneth Rexroth
The teeny-tiny writing of Charlotte Brontë

HI-LOW
Make fancy cocktails using Hi-C EctoCooler
When Henry Cotton of Moze (in Essex) was reported in 1592 for not attending church, he came before the local churchwardens, and ‘very unreverently and contemptuously farted unto them and said, “Present that to the court”’.
Taylor Swift swallows the world (and it ain’t a good thing)

GNOTHI SEAUTON
Grief Magic
Hallucinatory voices shaped by local culture
Paris Review interview with Adam Phillips:

“There are a number of people whom you might think of as casualties of the myth of the artist. They really should have done something else. Of course some people get lucky and find that art works for them, but for so many people it doesn’t. I think that needs to be included in the picture. Often one hears or reads accounts in which people will say, Well, he may have treated his children, wives, friends terribly, but look at the novels, the poems, the paintings. I think it’s a terrible equation. Obviously one can’t choose to be, as it were, a good parent or a good artist, but if the art legitimates cruelty, I think the art is not worth having. People should be doing everything they can to be as kind as possible and to enjoy each other’s company. Any art, any anything, that helps us do that is worth having. But if it doesn’t, it isn’t.” 

Image credit: Mark Rothko, Four Darks in Red, 1958.

Whoa Wednesday

THEY SAY
Sidney Poitier is still alive and can sometimes be seen at the dinosaur McDonald’s* on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, ordering pancakes at all hours of the day. At least, this is what I learned on Monday evening when Tye Pemberton and I were sitting in our living room discussing the important details of McDonald’s new all-day breakfast policy (p.s. all-day breakfast menus vary by location). While I have never been to L.A., it didn’t surprise me that a place known as the dinosaur McDonald’s—soherenamed because it used to be a Sinclair fill-up station—would have an all-day pancake policy for one. Poitier deserves all the delicious pancakes he can eat. The man is a living national treasure. When I asked Mr. Pemberton how he knew the dinosaur McDonald’s would make pancakes for Poitier whenever he wanted them, Mr. Pemberton said he had seen it himself when he was in college.** The staff even wrote Poitier a note on his to-go box: “Only for you, Mr. Poitier.” This much is true: I don’t doubt Mr. Pemberton, and neither should you.     —LJ

*Current L.A. residents invited to confirm or deny whether the dinosaur McDonald’s still stands.
**Over a decade ago.

JUST SO YOU KNOW, BLACK LIVES MATTER
In light of Steve King’s recent remarks, perhaps it is time to brush up on the subtle linguistics of polite white supremacy?
Writer Kiese Laymon takes us to church on facebook
Why I am skeptical of white liberals in the black lives matter movement

THE WORLD OUTSIDE AMERICA
What happened in Turkey?
People in China are REALLY hating on the Hague’s South China Sea decision

LITERATURE MAKES IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO WAKE UP IN THE MORNING
A new generation hilariously discovers Moby Dick
Famous authors’ handwritten outlines for great works of literature
David Foster Wallace’s syllabus for English 102 (in which he used popular fiction to blow little undergraduate minds

SWIFTBOATING KANYE: A PRIMER
Here’s what Taylor Swift did to Kanye and then what Kim did to defend him
Here is why Taylor Swift is all kinds of fucked up, plus bonus metaphor “Darth Susan” for that coworker you despise

ART BECAUSE LIFE
Black contemporary art tumblr of glory
Do you have to be rich to make it as an artist?
Searchable database of Japanese woodcuts
Hot pictures of hot books (some NSFW)

CINEMA OBSCURA
Detour, the 1945 film noir classic (only one hour long)
The Nude Restaurant by Andy Warhol (NSFW)

MEN’S ISSUES
Nobody showed up at the Women For Trump event at the RNC
BREXIT and the glass cliff
An interview with Lisa Mae Brunson about diversifying the white bro world of tech
On the appetites of men and women
Can a woman’s voice ever be right?

FUN TIME IS ANY TIME
Chris Fleming makes me laugh

Doge dancing

Image Credit: Columbia Pictures, Sidney Poitier in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?, 1967.

LJ Algorithm

What is the LJ Algorithm? 
Hard to define, more difficult to hold onto, the LJ Algorithm is the engine behind this newsletter / blogroll / whatever of links and anecdotes from around the web.

ART BECAUSE LIFE
Women of the Iowa Railroad: April 1943
The Work of Annu Palakunnathu Matthew: Indian American artist and photographer
Detroit 1982, by Robert Monaghan

LITERATURE MAKES IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO WAKE UP IN THE MORNING
W.H. Auden’s Syllabus
Fuck the Straight Line: How Story Rebels Against Expectation
The Creative Process, by James Baldwin

NEWS AND SHIT
Stephen Colbert Hijacked the RNC Stage
More Than 1,000 Attend Black Lives Matter Police Cook-Out in Wichita, Kansas
Women Were Included in the Civil Rights Act as a Joke

THE CUTE SET
Puppies Livestream
Kitten Gets So Excited He Jumps Up and Down

BONUS MISC.
101 Ways to Say Died

Image credit: Laura Jean Moore, New Jersey Beach, digital photograph, 2048 × 1152, 2015.