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July 2012 (97 posts)
Men! What are they thinking? We can't always answer that, but we'll be posting our favorite glimpses into their world in this space every Thursday.
* Junot Díaz, author of The Brief, Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and this fall's This Is How You Lose Her, discusses how race influences his work and his debt to women writers in this insightful Q&A. (Boston Review)
* In early 2011, Mike Tetreault found out he might get 10 minutes to prove to the Boston Symphony Orchestra that he's one of the best percussionists in the world. Boston Magazine tells the nail-biting story of what it's like to train for the nearly impossible. (Boston Magazine)
* "When you really become a professional at this stuff, what’s important is how well you can do when you’re not inspired. If that’s still workable, then you have a career."—Louis C.K. is talking about comedy in this interview, but it could be applied to pretty much anything. (A.V. Club)
Tip 2: Find nearby sales using apps like Zoomingo, which covers major retailers as well as smaller boutiques.
Tip 3: Try membership-only sites like peppermintpark.com for designer finds without the time limits of flash sites.
Are you reading Wild with us this summer? Oprah and author Cheryl Strayed are answering YOUR questions about this unforgettable memoir.
Do you have a question for Oprah or Cheryl about Wild? Ask away here!
It was one of the most cringe-inducing moments of the Beijing Olympics: Fierce, fleet Lolo Jones, leading the pack in the 100-meter hurdles, suddenly knocking over the second-to-last hurdle, losing her rhythm and falling back to seventh place. Just like that, the favored champion was out of the race. Four years later, Jones was dreaming of redemption in London, but her spot on this year's Olympic team wasn't a sure thing: she was coming off a rocky season that involved sub-par performances, nagging injuries and sagging confidence. And yet, last week Jones finished third in the 100-meter hurdles at the track and field trials and qualified for London. We are in awe of this killer photo of Jones at the trials. This is a woman who will not let anything--repeat, anything!--get in her way.
Graphic designer Milton Glaser claims that what he does is "move things around until they look right" and that he's been doing it "for centuries." The creator of the "I [Heart] NY" graphic -- which has become so iconic it's hard to imagine it ever had to be created at all -- shares his thoughts on creativity in this great video, and what he says is relevant to all of us, artists or not: "Anything I've ever discovered has come through the act of work or making things... the act itself is the path to discovery."
To master anything, says Glaser, we need to move toward what we don't know. "Most significant works come out of misunderstanding," he goes on to say. "It is the path to attempt to understand that is what you're looking for. The path by which you arrive at understanding is the whole point of the game, not the arrival." We know this, of course we do, but when faced with a big challenge at work, or any problem that demands creative solutions, it's all too easy to lose the nerve to search, the possibility of risk.
The On Creativity site has more designers, cartoonists, and artists of all kinds sharing their thoughts on creativity -- each says something worth writing down and pinning to the wall near your work station. An installation artist admits to a fear of the blank wall. A renowned designer decrees: "Use what is essentially you." No losing-of-nerve allowed. Go forth, into your future, embracing the possibility of failure. As Glaser puts it, if you're the best at drawing cocker spaniels...try to draw a goldfish. Good advice for all of us cocker-spaniel-drawers.
More on Creativity:
How to Start Any Project
How to Beat Procrastination
How to Get Out of a Life Block
Fast Company has curated this lovely collection of 8 Examples of Good Defeating Evil on the Internet. Example Number One is the amazing Indie-Go-Go campaign that a kind-hearted soul started in order to give a lady named Karen a nice vacation. You probably heard the story: a senior citizen works as a bus monitor, and one day the middle-schoolers on her bus decided to record their verbal harassment of her and put in online, because it's just so hilarious to taunt a sweet older woman into tears. One man decided that Karen the bus monitor needed a break, and started the campaign in order to raise $5,000 for her. Thousands of views, tweets, likes, and donations later, Karen's campaign has raised over $679,000.
Read on for more stories that will make you feel better about the world, the Internet, and your hours spent trolling its mysterious depths.
The Ripple Effect of Oprah's Act of Kindness
Pick a Card, Do Good, Share Online
Technology + Charity = Hope Mob
Turns out seeing a wide spectrum of color can help more than just coordinating outfits or recognizing hungry barracuda: it can also help you to identify emotions, or even disease. Evolutionary neurobiologist Dr. Mark Changizi has researched color vision and developed glasses that will help people to better see hue changes on others' skin, which can signal changes in feeling or health. According to Good, the target market for the eyewear would be medical professionals who could "use the filters in examinations to pick up on cues about patients unavailable to the naked eye." Veins and trauma would be easier to see; diseased blood would show up in a different color. But creator Dr. Changizi thinks these tinted glasses could also have applications in poker, sports, dating, and security; as he puts it, "one sees other people better by keeping them on." So we can all be a bit more shrimp-like. You know, in a good way.
The Invention of the Smile (Emoticon)
Trying Out the Latest Beauty Innovations
Homemade Magic Shell
The DIY version of this classic ice cream topping is surprisingly easy to make (all you need are coconut oil and semi-sweet chocolate chips), and tastes just like a dipped cone from the truck on the corner, minus the alkali and soy lecithin.
If you're growing zucchini, you're probably familiar with their abundant but delicate flowers (which are also available at farmer's markets now). It's best to pick or buy the yellow-and-orange blossoms and eat them the same day, since they wilt quickly. While the most common--and arguably tastiest--way to serve them is to stuff the long, narrow blooms with cheese and fry them, they're also excellent baked, or incorporated into pasta dishes, quesadillas or soup.