One of the ways I really woke up to how bad racism is in the U.S. was reading an article in Ebony magazine about how to talk to your kids about police. It was in amongst articles about skin products and travel, right there in the middle of all the regular lifestyle magazine stuff. Something about the juxtaposition really brought it home for me emotionally. I knew that talking to your kids about the police is a rote conversation in our black communities, similar to a “birds and bees” talk, but I didn’t understand it emotionally until that moment.
After that, I started going deep every time I heard about another black person hurt or killed by police. I followed all the news, educated myself whenever it happened. I was shocked, and eventually devastated, by how mundane it is. It has become necessary to scare the shit out of your very young American kids, scare them to tears, so they don’t accidentally reach for their license in the presence of an officer who then kills them because they believe the kid is reaching for a gun.
Anyway, if you’re not black and you feel confused, or like there’s something you’re missing, consider just tuning in a little more. Watch the video above, maybe subscribe to Ebony (it’s like $18), follow a dozen black people on Twitter. Don’t bug any strangers, don’t argue with anyone on social media, just listen to the conversation and feelings happening in a few of our black communities. Google stuff you don’t understand, and see what you can learn.
Fat tears. via Swiss Miss
Have you heard about Simple, The Easiest Cookbook in the World? I read about it in someone’s comments and ordered a copy. I’m so impressed by the layout.
No recipe has more than six ingredients, and each of them is pictured.
Every recipe also has a photo of the finished product so you know in advance if it looks yum. So genius.
Do you know about it? Any favorite recipes therein? Or do you have throw-it-together recipes like this that you use to whip up quick meals? Tell, please.
Oof. Guys. These last couple weeks have been so intense. This weekend we’re taking a brief break from grinding our teeth to do as little as possible. We’ll play with the baby Saturday, then maybe hit up the Alameda Flea Sunday and get some kettle corn for the big game. How are you holding up? Here’s some good stuff I’ve been seeing around.
This Missy Elliot video is beautiful. You can feel her brain all over it.
I want this Toi et Moi ring. Moi’s! Aaaaaall moi’s.
Jen Brea’s Unrest premiered at Sundance! BOOM. It’s a film about Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) and the stigma surrounding the disease. If you’re attending SxSW, there will be a screening there as well. Please go see.
I waited to buy an electric tea kettle until I could find one that looked like a real kettle. This is the only other one I’ve seen in years, and it’s on sale.
An Open Letter From That One Guy Who Organized 3.5 Million Illegal Voters
“As Donald Trump has noted, we only wanted to have votes illegally cast in California and New York, because those were the states where a massive voting fraud scheme would matter the very least.”
As Einstein once said…
A device that turns compostable items into fertilizer in 24 hours.
My friend Erin Loechner has a new book out called Chasing Slow. Congrats, Erin!
Also, I pinned a bunch of stuff. Mostly old stuff I found on Etsy and bathroom design ideas, because I need to gut two bathrooms in the new place. That’s a lotta tile.
You’re the less romantic one in your relationship, and maybe Valentine’s Day is causing some anxiety. If you’re curious how to make the day a win for you, these are some sweet, hyper-traditional gifts. They say the only thing your love wants to hear on Valentine’s Day: I remembered.
For Valentine’s Day, the actual Valentine is obligatory. You can buy a card, but a handmade Valentine is sweeter. This set of ten heart cards with envelopes, $9 lets you write love notes for other occasions too. Earnest expressions of affection are a safer bet than humor. “Be my Valentine, [love’s name]!” is just fine. Maybe draw a little picture, or cut and glue some photos from magazines. Effort counts here.
Now you need a present. You don’t have to spend a lot, google free or cheap Valentine’s Day gifts if you need help.
A small heart-shaped box of good chocolate is kitschy fantastic. Prestat Artisan Pink Heart Shaped Box, $25 is a great one. (You can get it on Amazon for $34, if ease is your thing.) If your Valentine is dieting, ask if chocolate would be a nice treat or an act of sabotage.
A dozen red roses, $31 is Valentine’s Day in floral form. If you’d prefer a grand gesture, you can order two dozen roses, $48. People who find this cheesy can be ferreted out by asking, “Do you think red roses on Valentine’s Day are cheesy or nice?” And if the answer is “Cheesy, but I like flowers.” look for another bouquet with only one type of flower. Because of the flower rush on Valentine’s Day, florists sometimes sub-in weird stuff when you order a “mixed bouquet.” If your person doesn’t like flowers “because they just die,” your partner may not actually give a crap if you remember Valentine’s Day.
Love Poems by Pablo Neruda, $10 is solid. Ideally, you’ll read it first, and inscribe the book with something romantic. If you’re at a loss, “I love you!” is a good bet, but you can also quote a line from one of the poems. If Neruda isn’t your jam, here’s a nice edition of Shakespeare’s Sonnets. For bonus points, read through and mark a few applicable sentiments.
Jewelry as a gift says you’re serious about this person. Diamond studs, from $235 are classic, but you can buy any kind of jewelry in your price range. Like these gold-dipped studs for $20, or this pretty bangle for $28.
Unless the person has specifically mentioned they want a piece of jewelry, you’ll want to keep your choice very simple. Avoid heart-shaped pieces, because most of those are cute on Valentine’s Day but a little odd to wear otherwise. Also avoid rings, because they can cause a confusing Is this a proposal? moment.
Okay! Today is February 1. Order something now and set an alarm on your phone for February 13, so you can get everything sorted for presentation on Valentine’s Day morning. First thing. This is so your love doesn’t spend the day worried that you forgot, instead of smiling about how uncharacteristically thoughtful you’ve been.
In addition to a card and a gift, plan for one special meal or event — maybe breakfast in bed, or a nicer dinner than usual. If you’re broke, a long walk or lighting candles for regular dinner counts too.
Happy Valentine’s Day, friend. You got this.
Reiterating my annual request for smart people to breed. Thank you.
All Your Heart Are Belong to Me, $5
I just set you up the bomb.
Boobies Calculation, $4
A much more sound approach than kicking her because you like her.
Carl Sagan Valentine, $5
Cyrano got nothing on Sagan.
Space and Time Valentine, $5
You should probably let those guys go.
Dr. Who Valentine, $5
Comes see the softer side of gears.
Replenish My Hearts, $8
You are a life-giving force, son.
Texting Bubble Stationery Set, $16
Maybe you’re old fashioned, and you want to text a love letter.
Papercut Protest Valentine, $5
All of us know Valentine’s Day is a fake holiday created by greeting card companies anyway. But if you’re going this route, maybe grab her some flowers too.
Plus some old guides that might give you good ideas:
I Love You, Nerd Valentine: Top 10 Valentines for Geeks
Nerds in Love: 10 Valentines for Geeks