Mighty Life List
Aug 14 2014

Michael Brown Killed in Ferguson, Missouri

For now, this is a living post, updated as I gather things here.

Jessica Lussenhop

How to Help

• A List of the Michael Brown Vigils happening at August 14, 2014 at 7pm EST/4pm PT. The one for San Francisco is in Civic Center Plaza.
A Ferguson bail and legal fund for those arrested during the police-brutality demonstrations

“You didn’t have to shoot him eight times… You just shot all through my baby’s body.” -Michael Brown’s Mother, Leslie McSpadden (via Brittany_noble)

“It was just horrible to watch, and it hurt him a lot. I saw it in his eyes.” -Dorian Johnson, who was walking with Michael Brown when the 18-year-old was shot and killed by a police officer


Timeline from CBS Local in St. Louis”
August 11: “It is announced that the FBI is opening a parallel investigation to that of the St. Louis County Police Department concerning possible civil rights violations.”
Audio recap of early events in Ferguson from KMOV Reporter Brittany Noble
“Sunday night I saw lots of crowds of people, I saw police trying to work with those crowds and calm them down, but then the crowds became so violent, kicking the police cars and putting their hands surrounding the police and trying to intimidate them that police were almost leaving the area… It’s my understanding that the family is very disappointed with some of the violent reactions from the community.”
32 Powerful Images from Ferguson After the Death of Michael Brown, Buzzfeed
Detailed breakdown and analysis by Dara Lind on Vox. Ed: This is the most organized thing I’ve seen so far if you want details.

Current Information
• The Ferguson tag on Twitter
Twitter List of Professional and Amateur Journalists in Ferguson
Reddit Live Feed
Ferguson coverage on Boing Boing

Jeff Roberson/AP

“Part of the reason we’re seeing so many black men killed is that police officers are now best understood less as members of communities, dedicated to keeping peace within them, than as domestic soldiers.”
America is Not Safe for Black People by Greg Howard

Mario Anzuoni for Reuters

“Police forces usually fall into one of two categories, though there some grey situations between the two. You either protect the rule of law and the population, or you’re the type of police force that’s there to protect the regime. What’s happening in Ferguson is what regime protection forces do, not what rule of law police do.”
“They have the toys, and they just want to play with them, to put it bluntly. They look like guys playing army.”
– Jason Fritz, an Iraq war vet and specialist on policing in conflict zones on Vox

New York Times Graphics

Child uses a rag to shield his face from tear gas. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

“[In Ferguson] three police officers out of 53 are black. Brown’s shooting was the first homicide recorded in Ferguson this year.” – Zachary Wilcha in Untied Mag

Reporter hit with tear gas in Ferguson
Orginal raw video without reporter voiceover is here

Jeff Roberson for AP

From What I saw in Ferguson by Jelani Cobb, The New Yorker:
“There’s not a tradition of unrest in St. Louis. Even in the sixties, when the rest of the country was exploding, you didn’t have that kind of thing here. And if there was some kind of problem it almost never lasted more than a day.” – Activist Etefia Umana
“The people who live in Canfield Green, the apartment complex where Brown was shot while on his way to visit his grandmother, not only witnessed his death but were subjected to an undignified wake: his prone figure sprawled on the street for four hours in the unforgiving August sun, with blood on the asphalt—an indignity in sharp contrast with the quick departure of the officer from the scene.”

Social Media

Ryan J. Reilly, reporter arrested in McDonald who says an officer slammed his head against a vending machine.
Ferguson board on Pinterest by Jenifer Ancona
• The alleged name of Michael Brown’s shooter is reported on Twitter by Anonymous, and the account is suspended:

“Unfortunately, Mike Brown is but the latest in a series of disturbing events regarding police behavior against people of color. New York City’s “stop and frisk” policy is but a minor example of the micro-aggressions black men face on a daily basis. Many black people I know have their own stories about being followed in a store or stopped for “driving while black”, or other encounters in racial bias. But too often, this bias turns violent. Just this summer, an Arizona professor was thrown to the ground by a police officer for “jaywalking” to avoid street construction at the crosswalk . . . at the same time groups of white people can be seen crossing behind the altercation in the dashcam video. A few weeks ago, a grandmother was jaywalking and a highway patrol officer took her to the ground and brutally beat her, punching her in the face repeatedly – which was caught on tape by a stunned stranger. Earlier this month another man was stopped by police for selling cigarettes and was put into a choke hold and killed.” – Kristen Howerton, Racial Bias, Police Brutality, and the Dangerous Act of Being Black

“I’m tired of turning on the news and seeing a story of some unarmed black person gunned down or otherwise killed, and being horrified, but even more horrifically, not all that surprised.” – Karen Walrond, Affected

Aug 7 2014

Bone Records

I first heard about Bone Records at a Pop-Up Magazine event, and the idea made me a little teary.

From the 1930s-60s, vinyl was too expensive in the Soviet Union, so bootleggers began using X-ray plates to print records. The useless X-rays could be purchased from hospitals for very little, and were thick enough to retain an impression that could be played on a phonograph.

The quality wasn’t great, but the price was right, and these presses let people in the Soviet Union hear banned music, like Jazz and early Rock ‘n’ Roll. Romantic.

More images and information over on Fastcodesign.com. I looked for listings on eBay, but didn’t find anything. Any collectors know where you’d go to procure one of these?

Aug 6 2014

Astonish Me by Maggie Shipstead

Maggie Shipstead is a friend, she came to one of our Mighty Summits. I know someone at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop probably already told you this Maggie, but hell you can write.

A few of my favorite parts of Astonish Me:

He kissed her once, just before he left for college. it had been the kind of kiss that asks for something enormous.

For the first time she can remember, she is not afraid of failing, and the relief feels like joy.

One of Jacob’s greatest fears was that his life will not appear intentional.

She fears the slow, corrosive trickle of reality into his adulation.

She feels his love grow less dense around her, like a fog lifting.

She prefers Elaine to remain fixed in her old life like an obsolete weather instrument gathering data no one ever sees.

He felt like a sparkling silver parachute had opened around him, delicate as the billow of a jellyfish.

“I hate the city in the summer,” she said. “It’s like living inside a dog’s mouth.”

Aug 4 2014

Joe Brouchu’s Sprinkles Art

Joe Brouchu made a dog portrait using sprinkles, 221,184 rainbow nonpareils in six colors. It took him about eight months. (via Artstomer)

Jul 25 2014

Something Blue

Nerdy brides, heed Nathaniel Russell’s Space Hanky.

Wait, you already have that Tardis decal on your shoes? Ok, nevermind.

Jul 22 2014

Strategies for Changing Habits

Comic by Nathaniel Russell, who sells cool stuff here.

Gretchen Rubin outlined her upcoming book on habit formation, Better Than Before, in 21 sentences, and I’ve been mulling a few of the concepts.

Adopting new habits, making choices automatic, is theoretically the simplest way to improve your life. I know this. But theory is so much more straightforward than practice. Theoretically all of us are lean, patient, well-rested people with flossing habits that would shame Sofia Vergara. (That woman flosses. Look at her.)

A few of the concepts I found appealing:

Monitoring, “You manage what you monitor, so find a way to monitor whatever matters.”
Identity, “Your habits reflect your identity, so if you struggle to change a particular habit, re-think your identity.”
Scheduling, “If it’s on the calendar, it happens.”

Are you trying to change any habits? Or do you think you are who you are, and fighting it is just chugging uphill Sisyphus-style?

Jul 21 2014

Shinji Nakaba, Contemporary Jewelry Designer

Yesterday, I came across a ring by Shinji Nakaba on Pinterest. He designs sculptural jewelry that deals in classical subjects, like the body, decay, botanicals. He’s based in Tokyo and specializes in glyptic art, which is carving of precious materials, particularly gemstones.

His tiny sculptures often read as detail shots of works from antiquity, and sometimes find direct reference points, like the David Ring above, which is the ideal gift for your inner 14-year-old boy.

He’s drawn to unusual materials as well.

He does lots of work with aluminum, and fashioned this hydrangea brooch from beer cans.

There’s not much information about Nakaba online in English, but it looks like this site featured him as a street-fashion subject. Unsurprisingly, the man is a hell of a dresser.

If you want something he’s made, his work is available for purchase here, and the prices don’t seem crazed given his talent. Go have a look.