There are so many horrible things going on in the world right now that it's almost mind-numbing. Many of them demand some sort of action from us lest our silence makes us complicit. In addition, it's altogether too easy to become overwhelmed, depressed, by what's going on in the world. I'm no stranger to depression; in fact, depression was a close "friend" for many, many years. While I carry out my game plan for how I'm going to make the world a better place, there are things I do to keep myself in a positive frame of mind.
I have a Mason jar on my desk, and each week I put in a slip of paper on which I've written something good that's happened to me. Those slips of paper have certainly had an assortment of things written on them: lunches with favorite authors, adventures with Denis, a marvelous book, spending five minutes watching two butterflies courting.... There are things (and people) to be thankful for all around us. Like the young woman who saw a complete stranger (me) having difficulties disembarking from a train at the Edinburgh station and rushed over to help. Or another young woman who helped chase down my errant lens cap at the Desert Botanical Garden the other day. Or the fantastic people I've met through this blog (like my Secret Santa who even sent me a magazine recently).
When the world has gone crazy, all we can do is to keep on sharing the good, no matter how small. You never ever know how some small thing you've done has made a huge difference in a stranger's life.
►Books, Movies & Other Interesting Tidbits◄
- Sci-Fi doesn't have to be depressing: Welcome to Solarpunk.
- Diana Gabaldon walks us through her process of crafting a sentence.
- This couple has a personal library of 10,000 books... and it's gorgeous!
- During World War II, literature reigned supreme.
- The fifteenth-century Voynich Manuscript has finally been decoded.
- The Staunch Book Prize has been launched for thrillers that avoid sexual violence against women, but not everyone thinks that's a good idea.
►Channeling My Inner Indiana Jones◄
- We're one step closer to non-invasively reading the ancient papyri hidden in mummy masks.
- Archaeologists are baffled after finding an ancient chess piece with Islamic designs... in Norway.
- Laser scans have revealed a Mayan "megalopolis" in the Guatemalan jungle. Here's another article about it.
- Experts have reconstructed the face of a Mesolithic-Era teenager.
- A mysterious 4,400-year-old tomb in Egypt has revealed rare paintings in a new excavation.
- A mass grave in England may hold the skeletons of hundreds of Viking invaders.
►Channeling My Inner Elly Mae Clampett◄
- Twenty colorful animals that will make your jaw drop.
- Meet the dogs of Chernobyl-- the abandoned pets that formed their own canine community.
- Praying mantises don tiny goggles to help us understand 3-D vision.
- A bichon frise named Flynn became America's top dog at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
►The Happy Wanderer◄
- It's finally happened: a Harry Potter-themed cruise is coming.
- The ultimate terrifying Arizona road trip. Dunno why they call it terrifying-- I've been on it, and it's great.
►I ♥ Lists◄
- Top ten books about the Scottish Highlands and Islands.
- Thirteen mnemonic sentences to boost your general knowledge.
- A peek at famous readers' borrowing records from a private New York library.
- The literary roles of Tom Hiddleson.
- Fifteen wonderfully wise quotes from Judy Blume.
- Thirty of the worst couples in literature.
That's all for this week! Don't forget to stop by next Friday when I'll be sharing a freshly selected batch of links for your surfing pleasure.
Have a great weekend, and read something fabulous!