What I learned last week (#107)

Hand resting on a surface. Illustration.

Quote I was thinking about:

Peace in the world is everybody’s business, no matter where you live or what you do.

Betty Williams

Book excerpt I thought was great:

“Say you step in dog poo. Now that can be extremely annoying. You have a choice. Curse the poo or clean your shoe? It’s a trivial example, but taking the kindest interpretation to events is simply accepting that energy spent wishing it were different is pointless. And that includes assigning blame, to others or to yourself. Would have, could have, should have. All a massive waste of energy. Clean the shoe. That’ll do.” (Laurence Endersen, What Owen Didn’t Know)

Amazing weather site/service I never knew about until this week:

Windy (windy.com)

So much is in the delivery:

A lot has already been shared about the poem by Amanda Gorman from the inauguration. I think that the poem was moving but how she delivered it made all the difference. Cool to watch again.

We’ve seen a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it,  Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.  And this effort very nearly succeeded.  But while democracy can be periodically delayed,  It can never be permanently defeated…

Where an emoji fits on the spectrum:

I’ve been using emoji constantly in my day-to-day writing for work (Slack-based, fully distributed work requires these extra dimensions), so learning about how emojis are developed and incorporated into common-use is suddenly very interesting.

Spectrum of emojis showing "smile with tear" at the center.

With such versatility and clear usefulness as an emoji, it is hard to believe that with over 100 smileys none of them convey the intended range of expression that comes with a simple smile with tear. Despite the moniker “Tears of Joy” (😂) the design of the emoji is very specifically “Tears of Laughter” which is awesome! We need a good emoji to indicate jkjkjkjkjkjkjk lolololol. It’s the most used emoji by a large margin. According to data compiled by Unicode’s Emoji Subcommittee, nearly one in ten emoji shares is “😂”! For the very reason why “Tears of Joy” is so useful is why “Smiling Face with Tear” has room to truly break new ground in your emoji palette.


Parents deserve so much more when it comes to the ways video games are discussed in our popular media:

For my friend Chris.


David Bowie’s reading list:

That was found after perusing the great David Bowie Answers the Famous Proust Questionnaire.

The moments that are gone before we realize it:

On Sunday night Sam asked if I could kneel-down next to his bed to tuck him in instead of our normal tradition of me laying next to him. Normally what happens is that I’ll be next to him and he’ll say “back-to-back” (quite loudly actually), upon which we will literally turn so we are lying back-to-back while I sing him a couple of bedtime songs and he falls asleep. Not tonight though, which was a big surprise. I thought this might be a one-time thing but he wanted me to just kneel the next night as well and it continued for the rest of the week. The Saturday night before might have been the last time I ever lay next to him to fall asleep, at least under the same covers. Thinking of these kinds of moments as a loss can seem silly and might seem silly to read about, but they hit hard in the most unexpected ways.

The second- and third-order consequences of shopping at IKEA:

Everything seems good until it isn’t…

Other things I was reminded of or thankful for last week:

  • Exchanging a few messages with a little brother I hadn’t talked to in awhile (NappiEli!) was a great highlight from the week. Hard to stay on top of all the connections from back home.
  • I think a wood-burning stove and barrel sauna is the way forward and I’m aiming to somehow make these part of our plans.
  • The inauguration. Very thankful for change.
  • The time to work on schoolwork with Vivi is pretty great. She seems to have a knack for phonetics and spelling. Also, remembering how you used to solve math problems and bumping that up against how kids are being taught today is surprising and a fun challenge.

Last but not least, check out what I’m up to now.

One response

  1. Destroying the faith of the innocent believers in IKEA – is this man insanely brave or unbelievably reckless? Has he no fear of DIYine Retribution? Very impressed by the site. I might be prepared to intercede with the IKEA Hit Squad for more details.

Comments welcome!