Weekend Reading

The strange life of Q-tips, the most bizarre thing people buy Years ago, my mother complained about a terrible earache. The pain was unbearable. And it wouldn’t go away — for a week, she walked around with a debilitating ringing in her head. I always find articles about everyday items like these fascinating; how does the usage change? You’ll Spend 3.5 Days of Your Life Untangling Headphones Now instead of just being frustrated that my headphones are always tangled, now I’ll get to enjoy knowing I’m wasting a few days of my life. Untangle 4 times a day. I dunno, the estimates seem a bit light. Should Fiction Be Timeless? Pop Culture References in Contemporary Novels Should fiction be timeless? …

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Reading and Writing

It’s a vicious cycle, debilitating one moment, inspiring the next, it feeds my desire to learn and slowly pulls at the insecurity of my abilities. It is fuel on the fire, stoking my passion to explore my own literary ideas. It is the pulled thread, unravelling my dreams. Is this what it is to be a writer? To be found reading with wonderous awe as a story gathers pace before your eyes, the skilled manipulation of the reader crafted through each sentence, each line of dialogue pulling you deeper into the world the writer has created. The slow, building sense of envy, as I reflect on my own bludgeoning attempts at the same. As the days pass, I flip flop …

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I am Dolly Parton

This post is brought to you by the Dolly Parton song ‘Nine to Five’. You’re welcome (hey, it’s been stuck in my head for days now, just thought I’d share the joy). As I think I’ve mentioned, I got a new job late last year. I now work in a big office (well, two, actually) for a large business (no names!). It’s been quite a learning experiencing and a lot of change; it’s my first foray into the world of contracting, it’s a more defined role than I’ve had in years, and it’s in an environment which has a dress code, a clean desk policy, and which is about as far removed from the software company I used to work …

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Weekend Reading

A long week, or so it felt, as the lurgy caught me. Not so much reading, a lot of sleeping! 12 Struggles Of Having An Outgoing Personality But An Anxious Mind Outgoing people with anxious minds – or minds that overthink – tend to feel anxiety the most intensely, often because we don’t talk about it. And by “often” I mean never. Our anxiety is a contrast to our big, bold personalities. Strangers would never guess it. I manage to keep most of my anxiety squashed down, not always though. Never presume you know someone from the A Neuroscientist on the Calming Powers of the To-Do List 1. Those who make lists. 2. Those who don’t. And, as one scientist …

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Welcoming Lucy

Hello Lucy, First up I’m really glad that you are no longer bump/wriggles/it; your parents, in their infinite wisdom, decided to leave the discovery of whether you were born a boy or a girl for the big birth day itself. A lovely thing to have that be a surprise, don’t you think? Anyway, apologies, but I referred to you as “it” right up until they told us your name. But now that they have, hello! Anyway, Uncle G here, yup, that idiot with the t-shirt, that’s me! Firstly, well done on making it into the world, I know it’s all a bit scary right now but don’t worry, your Mum and Dad will take care of you, protect you, and …

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The strongest art

The other night I watched Under the Skin. It’s a movie that has been on my radar for a while now after my interest was piqued when I heard it had been filmed in Glasgow, and when I read about some of the approaches to filming – members of the public were used without being aware they were being filmed (they were told later) – and saw that it was getting such mixed reviews, I knew I wanted to see it. Unashamedly ‘art house’ in approach, the reviews had some critics referring to it as a masterpiece and referencing Kubrick (2001: A Space Odyssey), whilst others panned it as indulgent, rambling and largely devoid of direction. Once I got passed …

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Weekend Reading

Morning constant reader, another swathe of random posts. Enjoy!! How We Learn Fairness A pair of brown capuchin monkeys is sitting in a cage. From time to time, their caretakers give them tokens, which they can then exchange for food. It’s a truth universally acknowledged that capuchin monkeys prefer grapes to cucumbers. I love this kind of article, helps me understand myself better How could I read more books? Agatha Christie read 200 books every year, while Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg gets through a book a fortnight. President Theodore Roosevelt read a book a day, and increased this to two or three when he had a quiet night. But how can mere mortals get through more? Yup, I’m doing Goodreads …

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Hidden words

I can sense it, sitting there, judging me, mocking me. It taunts me every day. No good, it says. I ignore it. Then I think about what it holds and it reveals itself to me further, insights and ideas bloom, a rough patch of ground speckled with wild flowers. Then it changes. It changes. From one day to the next, as the viewing angle skews, it morphs before me, pushing itself into new shapes, the end disappearing further beyond the blur of the middle. I read. Books that are ‘Glorious, unexpected, superbly written’ (I know this because it says so on the front cover, the words inside echoing the declaration). I read. Articles that are diligent and focused (I know …

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What’s on my phone?

iOS Geek Out Warning! Where would I be without my iPhone? Lost. Not literally, my sense of direction isn’t that bad, but given that I use it every day to keep on top of personal email and to do list, I use it to order coffee, listen to podcasts while commuting, it holds my bus pass, and more recently I’ve been using it to pay for items (£30 or under) … it’s pretty much indispensable. It’s not been immune for my desire to slim down as much of the clutter of life as possible and I’ve been slowly slimming down the number of apps I keep on my phone – although I still seem to have several Photo apps regardless …

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Weekend Reading

A bumper issue this week because I’ve had a little more time to read (because I’m making more time). I think I’ll be more selective moving forward though, but here is what I found interesting this week. Thicker Than Water In the 1986 John Hughes-penned film Pretty in Pink, Molly Ringwald plays Andie Walsh, a quick-witted, externally tough, yet entirely sympathetic fashion-savvy teenager with a preference for New Wave. In the way of teenage movie clichés, Andie is from the “wrong side of the tracks. http://ift.tt/1TDPzMS 19 Books To Read Before The Movie Comes Out In 2016 What it’s about: This is the true account of six soldiers and what they braved during 13 hours when the U.S. State Department …

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