A busy month...and let's not lie, there were many hours in airports/on planes spent reading Time Magazine and Entertainment Weekly.
The Physics of the Ponytail. (from the New York Times)
Longform.org, seriously the best essay aggregation site of the internet. (thanks Aimee for the recommendation!) --a group of girls and I have been getting together for dinner and do a bit of homework beforehand, reading a longer article and having it as a jump-off point for discussion. It's like a book club...but less of a commitment!
What's even funnier is that almost all of us read Joanna Goddard's blog, Cup of Jo, which is where Aimee got the idea for the articles club in the first place...and we talk about her like she's a close girlfriend that we visit in New York City, as if we've actually met. Obviously, we've babysat her son Toby, we tell people, oh, my friend Joanna gave us the idea to try out a new pink lipstick, etc. It's very surreal. This hit even closer to home because one of my favorite standard recipes is actually the eggplant parmesean from Gwyneth Paltrow's GOOP newsletter, and I casually mentioned that the recipe, well, "oh, it's from Gwyneth!" ...as if I know her. I don't. But the internet kind of makes it seem that way. I'm sure that if you read my entire blog archive (don't, please)-- you could get a pretty good picture of who I am, what I love to eat, who I want to become (Frizzle!). But it does floor me that we have these shared experiences with people and topics when we haven't met them in person. That, to me, is what makes the internet age the internet age. It's not the flashy graphics or the processing power, it's the fact that all of the new technology together makes it so easy to connect the lives of very disparate people (me and Pioneer Woman? Four kids, ranch in Oklahoma, vs. a grad student in engineering...nothing in common except I read what she writes, and my family loves her BBQ meatballs just as much as hers does).
Anyways, our first article was about Chinese tourism in Europe, and our second was about a murder on Cape Cod...both fascinating, for completely different reasons. And because of this, I've gotten more into reading longer articles online, including one about the economics of Trader Joe's, a story about body image from a poet named Lucy Grealy who died of an overdose in 2002, some shorts essays from a woman who moved her family to Brazil for a year, and a slightly frightening one about the woman who murdered the doctor behind the Scarsdale diet.
Finally, one of my books from the old Ashdown at MIT is called Crainquebille...back in the day, when my room was still quite empty, I picked up a bunch of books to fill out my shelves (which led to the most wonderful mystery to unravel about Harold Fairchild) ---and lately, as my shelves are more full of books, I've been trying to make sure that all of them are books I will use, and this is one I hadn't read, so now I have. It's a large-print version, with really beautiful black and white illustrations. I'm such a sucker for pretty pictures.