Thoroughly Thursday - the Old-Fashioned Telephone Edition
Welcome back to Thoroughly Thursday, the Old-Fashioned Telephone edition. Like most people, much of my life and connection to my loved ones is tied to my smartphone. However, it also means my phone is always on, and always near me. Occasionally, I miss the days when my telephone number only rang in one location. You were allowed to be “out” and unavailable, and not answering your phone didn’t mean you were a bad person. You didn’t have to worry that your kids would be dialing you frantically from the middle of an intersection because they chased a stray puppy into the street because the act of calling would have meant that they left the street to find a telephone.
But, today, you never know. So, feel free to call me, anytime, anywhere. I’m around.
What I'm Reading - The Joy of Structured Procrastination
I’ve been reading the wonderful (and wonderfully short) book called The Art of Procrastination - A Guide to Effective Dawdling, Lollygagging and Postponing (or getting things done by putting them off) (which has to be the best title ever), written by John Perry, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Stanford U. Several years ago, Professor Perry realized that he was a procrastinator but was often told that he “got a lot done”. Because he is a philosopher, he thought about this and realized that he was a "structured procrastinator" in that he was good at getting lots of important tasks done, just usually not the one that he was supposed to be doing. Ergo, he wrote this fantastic (short) book, which he admits he completed when he "was avoiding grading papers and evaluating dissertations”. As someone who spends hours each week exploring various books, films and activities when I’m are supposed to be cleaning the garage and doing the laundry, I feel like I may have found my soulmate. You can see my post on it here.
What I'm Watching (Pt 1) - Sometimes the Best Newspaperman is a Woman
This weekend, I introduced my girls to the 1940 film His Girl Friday, with Rosalind Russell and Cary Grant. Russell is amazing as the street-smart, star reporter Hildy Johnson who can hold her own with the press crew waiting for an execution while also figuring out the best lede necessary to save the victim's life. Strangely, though the setting and habits of most of the cast are of a different age (the outfits, the smoking, the old-style phones), the premise feels like it could be happening today: a young career woman pondering the quiet life, the tug-of-war between factual and sensational journalism, and the use of scare tactics and boogeymen to get political votes. The girls really enjoyed the film, and you can see my review of it here.
What I'm Watching (Pt. 2) - Galactic Malthusian Theory (and Superheroes)
Have you seen that tiny, indie film about how Grape Ape went evil and tried to take over the Galaxy? Yeah, it was pretty awesome. You can read my review here, but here is my TD;LR on Avengers: Infinity War: Directors Anthony & Joe Russell did admirably pulling in nearly all major Marvel heroes and still giving them the opportunity to keep it interesting. Josh Brolin (Thanos) is nuanced as a character that would normally be stupidly 2D. However, the final fight scenes get overly cray-cray, and the ending is SPOILER and SPOILER.
What I'm Writing - A Peculiarly Personal Listicle
A few days ago in a free-writing session, I wrote the sentence: “Dig a ditch in a muddy valley and bury all your long, lost envies.“ ...which is far more poetic than my usual semi-coherent word-salad. However, I took it as a challenge and decided to write out my List of Lost Envies. Please let me know if you have your own past envies. I think it could make an interesting coffee-table book.
All the best, and remember, tomorrow is Friday. :)
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P.P.S. No puppies were hurt in the creation of this newsletter.