Sunday, June 29, 2008

Relevant News Flash (6:3)

I must be in "one of those moods" because the following bits appealed from around the world of news:
  • It's a sign of the times when an ostensibly humorous list of tongue in cheek fuel tips by Jeffrey Shaffer in The Christian Science Monitor doesn't seem that far fetched. I particularly like tip #6. So if you see someone peeking over your backyard fence, don't panic, they are simply sizing up the amenities!
  • Also in The Christian Science Monitor, Emily Walshe, observes that technology seems to be killing the serendipitous surprises in our lives. What's the fun in life when your path is laid out by a Magellan?

In other news:

  • Significant concerns surround the falling rates of birth around the world, and how cultures around the world regard and react to this new reality goes to the heart of the philosophical differences among us. A very absorbing overview in the New York Times Magazine by Russell Shorto will bring you up to speed on this looming global game-changer.
  • Human population is just one part of the equation according to a piece by Moises Velasquez-Manoff. It seems impossible that it took us this long to acknowledge the reality of interdependence and it's necessary application in any tactical plan we may come up with.
  • It's a wonder that couples that work side by side in business ever reproduce! Geraldine Fabrikant chronicles the ups and downs of the family business, especially when the Mrs. is the CEO, in the New York Times.
  • The image of a unbelievably brave and desperate 10 year old Yemeni girl making her way alone to the courthouse to seek a divorce from her abusive 30 year old husband, to whom she had been given in an arranged marriage, is simply riveting. Learn about this brutal reality for many women in the third world.
  • You think?! Finally, the USDA has updated the WIC (Women, Infants, Children) food subsidy program to include fruits and vegetables. An also notable change is an incentive to mothers to fully breastfeed.
  • Do you know what "WWOOFing" is? Neither did I until I read a piece by Emily Badger which gives a glimpse into a phenomenon that is part eco-tourism and part "finding yourself."
  • Many pride themselves on the ability to keep an open mind. But, is this really possible, given the nature of how our memories work? Sam Wang writes in an Op-Ed piece in the New York Times that, "Consumers of news, for their part, are prone to selectively accept and remember statements that reinforce beliefs they already hold." We look for the common threads that resonate for us. I am no different, dear reader, a fact that must always be kept in mind, yours and mine alike.
  • Finally, a mother tries to hold off the awareness of the deep wedges between us, in a poignant meditation on explaining the unexplainable to a child, by Skila Brown.

Have a good week!

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