Thursday, December 6, 2012

Around the Web

Here's some interesting things I read while trying to stay up all night:

From Captain Awkward, the rules for talking to others about their food choices:
I think the world would be a better place if we stuck to one acceptable way of commenting on what is on a fellow adult’s plate. That way is “That looks delicious” + some variation of “Where did you get it/how did you make it/does it taste as good as it looks/smells/Is it like this other thing that is also delicious?

Stop commenting on how much or how little someone eats. “Is that all you’re eating?” “Are you really going to eat all of that?” “Looks like SOMEONE was HUNGRY.” If you feel any of those sentences about to leave your mouth, clap your hand over that mouth.
Stop commenting on what is on someone else’s plate.Are you sure it’s okay to eat that?” “Should you really be eating that?” Do not wrinkle your nose, call other people’s food gross, or explain in detail why you wish you could eat what they are eating but can’t since you gave up _________. Don’t bring up your health issues or their health issues. Don’t bring up that thing you read online somewhere about the health benefits of x, y, and z. Don’t bring up that diet your Aunt Susie tried that worked so well for her. When someone is eating delicious meat, it’s not a good time to talk about factory farms. When someone is eating delicious daal, it’s not the time to sermonize about how you could never be a vegetarian and lovingly describe your favorite roast baby sheep dish from childhood.
Stop assigning food a moral value. Don’t go on and on about how you probably shouldn’t eat whatever it is. Don’t try to justify a big meal or dessert by claiming that you only ate a few leaves of parsley earlier and try to suck everyone into your shame spiral – no one cares. Pie isn’t “sinful;” pie is fucking delicious.
I think we probably all know at least one person who breaks these rules. Don't BE that person. I think these rules can be applied even more generally to anything an adult might say about another adult's choices. This includes clothes, hobbies, sex life: stop applying your own value judgements to other people's actions.
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From Pandamonium, a dystopian future where abortion is illegal, called ILU-486 (via Love Joy Feminism):
She was worried because she’d taken three large white pills a day ago, and while she was clotting and cramping and the like, if she didn’t get taken care of soon, she was going to have to explain the miscarriage to the police. They would find out. She didn’t know how they did, but she was already on warning. Sally swore they had detectors in the sewer pipes, but that sounded ridiculous.
The instructions said to wait. Don’t pack a bag. Don’t tell anyone. Don’t plan for childcare. Nothing bad will happen. Just wait. Pretend nothing is amiss. We come to you.
There was more, of course. She understood that she had taken mifepristone, and that if she hadn’t yet miscarried, then she’d need the second drug. More importantly, she needed to get rid of the evidence. Terminating a fetus in any way was a crime, even if it was an accident. According to the cop she saw last time, there were no accidents, only what he called “accidents”, with finger quotes.
Perhaps not as fictional as it should be. Considering buying the bumper sticker.
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And finally, some fun: From Huffington Post Weddings, on brides and social media. Some interesting factoids:
  • 79% keep up on wedding planning blogs. I certainly do!
  • Updating Engagement status [on Facebook]: 1 in 3 do it within hours. 1 in 4 do it within days. We made our engagement Facebook official within a couple hours, before we went to bed. But the mobile app doesn't let you do it (or we couldn't figure it out), so our marriage might take a couple days to be Facebook official.
  • 62% like that their guests post photos from the wedding.
    There is a growing movement of these so-called unplugged weddings where you ask guests not to take pictures. Whatever! I personally love seeing pics posted with my facebook friends tagged in their weddings, which you get months before the professional photos and want the same for my own wedding. I plan to set-up a Flickr pool for our guests and encourage facebook posting. I also really like this idea, to leave your camera out for guests to use so that you can see pics of your wedding at the end of the night.
    On the other hand, the last shuttle launch I went to (back in my senior year of college, when I lived down the road from KSC), I encouraged the others around me to watch with their eyes rather than try to take pictures. The professional pics will always be better and you might miss it. But that's a 30 second ascent (if you're lucky on a clear night) not a 20 minute ceremony. I'm sure they won't "miss it" if they take a couple pics.
What do you think? Did you have (or will you consider having) an unplugged wedding?
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And finally, check out these cool high-res images of Earth from space taken by a NASA/NOAA satellite. Here's just one of the many:

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