I don’t usually read ‘My Year of…’ articles. Not because I’m unimpressed by what the person has given up or taken up, but because they all seem to end the same way…with the person going back to the way they lived before their experiment.
There was an article in the Guardian this week however that changed my mind. Christopher Hebert, an American academic, wrote about giving up the news for all of last year, from the moment Trump was elected in November 2016 through to this New Year. I don’t know if it’s Hebert’s great conversational writing style or the fact that 2017 was completely nutso news wise but I really enjoyed reading about his experience and I was convinced by his conclusion. You’ll have to read it to see if he goes back to the way he lived before…
And if any of you HAVE read ‘My Year of…’ articles that you found compelling and made you give up or take up something, post them below or @ me…yes, DO @ me. I’d love to see them.
For your quiet weekend moment drinking coffee and reading articles…if you’re lucky enough to have such a thing…here are a few more articles that I’ve enjoyed reading this week:
This article Leah Fessler on Quartz asking whether your Slack is sexist. It begins with a simple personal experience of using Slack in an office environment and then takes you into linguistics, gender, early internet developments and finishes on women’s conversation styles. It’s long and totally worth your time. Also, despite the issues Fessler highlights, I personally can’t recommend Slack enough for work conversations. Anyone had any bad experiences using it?
You may already have heard of John Gottman. Malcolm Gladwell discusses his work in Blink. If not, then I’m not sure whether sharing this article and his work with you is a kind or malevolent thing to do…Essentially Professor Gottman is a well respected psychologist who has spent his career researching romantic relationships and marriage. His most famous book is calledThe Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work and includes advice on how to have a successful romantic relationship based on the findings from his extensive psychological studies into married couples. I haven’t read the book, although I’d like to, but I have read about The Four Horsemen, which is what he calls the 4 sure fire signs that a relationship isn’t going to work. So, yes…careful reading this, lest you open Pandora’s box.
One of the few things I miss about the UK so far, now that we’ve been living in France for nearly 3 months is Oatly. You can buy oat milk here, everywhere in fact; the French have enthusiastically embraced the non-dairy trend, but not Oatly. And there is a difference… I now know. Now the NY Times has an article about the NEW TREND taking the US by storm, which is interesting to read because it’s usually Britain trailing on America’s trend-tails. I was also amazed to read that Oatly has existed in Sweden for 25 years already, is there anything they aren’t better at?! Finally…who knew that one day I would miss the watery traces of oats SO MUCH.
Also…*takes deep breath*…this article about First Daughters and Ivanka Trump in The New Yorker by the always excellent Jia Tolentino (follow her on Twitter, read every piece she writes); this great piece in Racked by Esther Zuckerman about a gold kaftan and Meryl Streep and The Post (so many great things together); this piece by David Sims in The Atlantic about Woody Allen; AND this interview with Ellen Pompeo which surprised everyone by revealing that women in Hollywood could be honest and surprised me by revealing that Ellen Pompeo is 100% badass. You may already have known that, I was very happy to discover it.
I’ve found recently that my head feels very full and crowded, like the Tube at rush hour, with too much to say and too many questions. That has meant that some of the articles I’ve written recently have been too long. I want to sharpen the image and cut to the chase and get to the point. Better. So I’m going to limit myself to 500 word pieces for a little while, see how that goes. Let me know what you think!
Thank you for reading, don’t eat any washing liquids in any form, have a lovely weekend!
Top illustration from The Guardian, photo of Ellen Pompeo by John Sciulli/Getty Images, image of the poster for Spielberg’s The Post, Calvin and Hobbes cartoon by Bill Waterson.