Elsewhere for December 24, 2022

You should read this for 12/24/2022:

Art, Music, and Film

decorative leaf bulletAn Academic Is Fired Over a Medieval Painting of the Prophet Muhammad

decorative leaf bulletDonna Reed’s daughter plays guardian angel for ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’

Books, Libraries, Writing, and Language

decorative leaf bulletWe’re drowning in old books. But getting rid of them is heartbreaking.

Via @b_hawk@hcommons.social (Brandon W. Hawk): decorative leaf bulletAn Ox, an Ass, and Three Kings: A History of Apocryphal Christmas Traditions

decorative leaf bulletHumanists All What is lost in the precipitous decline of the arts and humanities

Teaching the arts and humanities well confers proficiencies such as good writing and clear speaking. Critical thinking emerges—take nothing on authority, absorb but question traditions, conserve in order to reform. Embracing past experience, the arts and humanities put current predicaments in perspective: achievements since ancestors set foot in Olduvai clay, alliances with evil, triumphs over disease, social contracts defeating brute force—all represented from the cave paintings of Chauvet to the caves of virtual reality.

decorative leaf bulletHuntsville Public Library (Tx) Privatized After Pride Display

The Huntsville Public Library (HPL) has been under fire since this summer, when a book display riled up city officials. Now, following the removal of two book displays at the public library, the city decided to privatize the library.
Though officials claim the move to hire Library Services & Systems (LS&S) will reduce library operational costs over the next ten years, it comes on the heels of the city removing a Pride book display and a Banned Books Week display in September. City Manager Aron Kulhavy called for the displays to be taken down, temporarily closing the library. Following the removal of both displays, the library was told they could not create any additional displays, pending the city’s review of policies and procedures about them. The City Librarian was also placed on leave.

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

Food and Drink

decorative leaf bulletThe Difference Between Puff Pastry and Phyllo Dough

History and Archaeology

decorative leaf bulletResearchers discover 168 mysterious carvings in Peru’s ancient Nazca plain

decorative leaf bulletArchaeologists Devise a Better Clock for Biblical Times

Politics and Society

decorative leaf bulletIn rural Georgia, an unlikely rebel against Trumpism

How Johnson became an unlikely part of an emerging voter revolt against Trumpism is not so much the story of some political strategy, or even the policies of the national Democratic Party, which has long been accused of ignoring places such as northwest Georgia. Rather, it is the story of a thousand life experiences that add up to a certain kind of American character, one that can arise from the very landscape where the Trump movement took root.

Science and Nature

H/T Introversion: decorative leaf bulletCrows Perform Yet Another Skill Once Thought Distinctively Human

Crows are some of the smartest creatures in the animal kingdom. They are capable of making rule-guided decisions and of creating and using tools. They also appear to show an innate sense of what numbers are. Researchers now report that these clever birds are able to understand recursion—the process of embedding structures in other, similar structures—which was long thought to be a uniquely human ability.

Recursion is a core conpt of human languages, so this is really cool.

decorative leaf bulletThe mysterious song of the dinosaurs

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 bulletElon’s stale playbook “At Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk was a jerk with a grand vision. At Twitter, he’s just a jerk.”

decorative leaf bulletElon Musk blamed a Twitter account for a stalker. Police see no link.

The Twitter owner threatened legal action, changed the platform’s rules and suspended journalists’ accounts after a confrontation involving his security team at a gas station. But the incident’s timing and location cast doubt on a link to the @ElonJet account.

decorative leaf bulletMaking ActivityPub Your Social Media Hub for Mastodon and Other Decentralized Services

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.

Something Wonderful

decorative leaf bulletAs ‘Mr. Christmas’ fights cancer, his former students bring the holiday to him

H/T Glenn Fleishman @glennf@twit.social decorative leaf bullet
Eleanor Morton : JRR Tolkien Writes a Christmas Book

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