So for years I’ve been saying that I’m not opposed to cussing, but that I do think we ought to save the best cuss words for when we need them–because if every other word is an expletive, then where will you find the words you need when dragons are chasing you or you just sliced your hand open while chopping vegetables? It turns out there may be data to back me up: cussing under stress really does increase our ability to tolerate pain–and the researcher suggests that for the words to retain their pain-enduring power, they need to not be overused.
coppervale links to a Sesame Street video that is a nice snapshot of the writing process. Meanwhile, this post of his just gave me shivers.
Using Twilight to market Wuthering Heights. I actually enjoyed Wuthering Heights back in college, but even so, since I always assumed that, you know, we weren’t supposed to take its relationships as functional … so knowing Edward and Bella liked it too explains So Much. (I assume this comes up in book 3? Or did I forget it in the haze of Bella taking Romeo and Juliet as a good model for life decisions, too?)
Choose your own apocalypse. (Via the Powells twitter feed.) Also, the creators have designed a sort of apocalyptic social network which shows which apocalypses are linked to which other apocalypses, social-network style.
Funny how, in arguing for why feminism is unnecessary and even evil, the author of this article unwittingly explains why feminism is still very, very necessary indeed. Don’t click unless you want to get very, very angry. But if you do click, but sure to click on this response as well. (Via jonquil.)
Abi of makinglight looks at U.S. healthcare issues from a European perspective, and along the way challenges the myth that U.S. healthcare is so expensive because other countries don’t do health care well:
I’ve discussed the health care/health insurance issue with my colleagues. The question they (along with the rest of the world) are asking is not “how can America afford to provide basic health care for its population?” It’s “How does America manage to pay so much for what it’s getting?” The amount of money that passes through the medical system in the US is not ordinary, not inevitable, and not necessary.
This most excellent post by YA writer Neesha Meminger on why the issues involved when whites write people of color are different from the issues involved when people of color write white characters–and the roles we all have to play in addressing power imbalances of all sorts gave me some good things to think about:
White folks, in general, need to turn *outward* and really see what’s outside of themselves and their immediate circles. And people of color must turn *inward*, to discover the true value within, then paint the world with it … the “reverse” discrimination argument … doesn’t take into consideration the fact that oppression is about power imbalance—not just name-calling and hurt feelings. In the case of a parent-child relationship, when a parent smacks a child with all his might, the effect is far different than when a child smacks a parent with all her might. The latter is not “reverse” abuse. The former results in lasting physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual scarring while the second leaves hardly an imprint. Why? Because there is a massive power imbalance on every level. The child is completely dependent on the parent for her very survival. And the parent is far stronger and bigger than she is.