You should read this for 12/4/2022:

Art, Music, and Film

decorative leaf bulletHallmalarkey Movies

It’s that time of year when Hallmark Christmas movies (and their imitators on Lifetime, Netflix, et. al.) are streaming 24/7.  In these Christmas-cookie-cutter cinematic confections, you are apt to encounter many of the items on the following list. (N.B. you can use the list for a drinking game—at your peril.)

Books, Libraries, Writing, and Language

decorative leaf bulletSFWA Names Robin McKinley Its 39th Grand Master!

The SFWA Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award recognizes “lifetime achievement in science fiction and/or fantasy.” It is named after author Damon Knight, SFWA’s founder and the organization’s 13th Grand Master. McKinley joins 38 writers who’ve been granted the title, including other luminaries such as Nalo Hopkinson, Peter S. Beagle, Connie Willis, Ursula K. LeGuin, Ray Bradbury, Anne McCaffrey, and Joe Haldeman.

Robin McKinley is one of the leading writers of the modern fairy-tale retelling genre, and indeed, her debut Beauty, a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, could be said to have started the fairy-tale retelling trend. She is also celebrated for her original fantasy novels. Her 1982 book The Blue Sword received the Newbery Honor, and its 1984 prequel The Hero and the Crown was awarded the Newbery Medal. School Library Journal said, “Her work has impacted not just the Newbery canon, but the fantasy genre, too.” Her 1985 anthology Imaginary Lands won the World Fantasy Award, and Water, the 2002 collection she co-wrote with Peter Dickinson, was later nominated as well.

decorative leaf bulletMidwinter magic: Robert Macfarlane on the enduring power of The Dark Is Rising

Write Note Pads: Notebooks and Planners Referral link for quality affordable notebooks, memo pads, and planners.

Food and Drink

decorative leaf bullet13 holiday cookie recipes to bring color and joy to the season

History and Archaeology

decorative leaf bulletWoman’s name and tiny sketches found in 1,300-year-old medieval text

Politics and Society

decorative leaf bulletLeft-Wing Voices Are Silenced on Twitter as Far-Right Trolls Advise Elon Musk

Several prominent antifascist organizers and journalists have had their accounts suspended in the past week, after right-wing operatives appealed directly to Musk to ban them and far-right internet trolls flooded Twitter’s complaints system with false reports about terms of service violations. . . . “What I believe happened is that I and other accounts have been mass reported for the last few weeks by a dedicated group of far-right extremists who want to erase archived evidence of their past misdeeds and to neutralize our ability to expose them in the future,” Loder said. “What I suspect happened is that Twitter’s automatic systems flagged my account for some reason and no human being is reviewing these.”

decorative leaf bulletOpinion The court’s supremely obtuse response to its ethical problems

The New York Times reported earlier this month the story of a conservative Ohio couple, Donald and Gayle Wright, who were deployed by a religious rights, antiabortion organization to befriend the Alitos and other conservative justices as part of an influence campaign.

The Rev. Rob Schenck, who headed the organization, said that Gayle Wright had tipped him off in advance about the outcome and authorship of a 2014 case, Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, involving religious employers’ obligations to provide contraceptive coverage. Gayle Wright and the Alitos denied any leak (Donald Wright died in 2020), but contemporaneous evidence bolsters Schenck’s claim of advance knowledge.

decorative leaf bulletAssisted living too often fails older, sicker residents, report says

Science and Nature

decorative leaf bulletResearchers discover two new minerals on meteorite grounded in Somalia

decorative leaf bulletWhy this mammal eats its own brain — and why it could matter for you

decorative leaf bulletThe Scottish Highlands, the Appalachians, and the Atlas are the same mountain range, once connected as the Central Pangean Mountains

Referral link: Curiosity Stream delivers shows across the full spectrum of the non-fiction genre to demystify science, nature, history, technology, society, lifestyle and more. $19.99/year for thousands of films (or $2.99/month).


decorative leaf bulletBig-screen Kindles return as notebooks, but they’re better for reading

decorative leaf bulletSocial Quitting

SetApp: A Suite of macOS Apps for a Single Price Affiliate link for a great collection of ver 200 apps for macOS and iOS for a flat subscription fee.

Women’s Work

decorative leaf bulletFrom a bunker, an acting mayor keeps her front-line Ukraine town alive

decorative leaf bulletJacinda Ardern asked if meeting Finland’s PM because they are ‘similar in age’, shuts that question down

Pay It Forward and Make It Better

decorative leaf bulletWhy you should almost always wash your clothes on cold

Something Wonderful

decorative leaf bulletMissing daughter reunited with family after 51 years

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