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The 35-Second Aha! Moment
Every Monday, we're rounding up things--small and big--that made us stop and think. Today, we were moved and inspired by an inaugural poet, Afghanistan's Romeo and Juliet, and more...
Shelley Keeling, a competitive runner who also coaches her 96-year old mother, Ida Keeling, in road races:
"It never occurred to me that my mom couldn't run."
Elizabeth Alexander, professor of African American studies at Yale, on what poetry can bring to a community:
"Are we not of interest to each other? To me, it's not about 'Oh i like her shoes...' It's much deeper than that. Are human beings who are in community, do we call to each other, do we heed each other, do we want to know each other?"
Halima Mohammedi and Rafi Mohammed, two Afghan teenagers whose attempt to go on a single date caused villagers to riot and the local authorities to jail them for their own protection:
Ms. Mohammedi: "We are all human. God created us from one dirt. Why can we not marry each other, or love each other?"
Mr. Mohammed: "I feel so bad. I just pray that God gives this girl back to me. I'm ready to lose my life. I just want her safe release."
Miranda July, writer, director and star of the new film, The Future:
She admires directors like [Noah] Baumbach and Wes Anderson, but she said: "All those men are also personal. I don't mind that, but I do mind that it's not really questioned, whereas I or another woman is looked at as so self-obsessed. Men are just not being judged in the same way. They're never going to be annoying in the same way."
Nathan Heller writing in Slate about the enduring appeal of book clubs:"They are our bid to stay on the same page across the blur of modern life."