I’m excited to announce that I’m now a board member for High Concept Labs! We’re an arts service organization based in Chicago with a mission to support artists and facilitate dialogue between artists, audiences, and staff. This increases access and transparency to the artistic process and fosters transformational experiences in an environment of experimentation and discovery. Check out the full press release at BroadwayWorld.
It’s my first-ever board position and one made possible by the OnBOARD training and matching program of the Arts & Business Council of Chicago. OnBOARD not only provides you training for what’s involved in being a board member at an arts organization, but it also matches you with small- and mid-sized nonprofits looking for new members.
I’ve almost always kept a running list of the books I read, but this year I decided to go Full Nerd.
I used Google Sheets to log each book I’ve read since October 2016—66 books in total, spread over 384 days.
I tracked titles, authors, author genders, copyright and publish dates, genres, page counts, format, dates started and ended, days between books. Starting at this new data year, I’ll also begin tracking author race, to hold myself accountable to hearing equal voice.
Accountability is one of the main reasons I began tracking this data. For example, based on the names on my bookshelf, it was clear I wasn’t reading enough books by women. And the data don’t lie. It was only through conscious intention this past year that I read the women I did; Rebecca Solnit, Jane Goodall, Janna Levin, Hannah Arendt, Ayaan Hirsi Ali. In most cases, their work was also the most urgent and profound. My goal is to keep building up this percentage. Hearing, listening, and understanding more.
I also used a five-star ranking system for the books I read. I usually thinking rankings are bullshit, so I didn’t put much thought into the rationale. If the book affected me or prompted me to think differently, it got more stars. This helped me identify what were my “favorite” books from the past year, and which ones sucked.
World Nomads is currently running a travel writing contest for a two-week trip to the Balkans. Comes with free flights, €1000 for a 10-day tour, apparel, a train pass and mentoring with travel writer Tim Neville of OutsideMagazine.
I’ve entered in past WM competitions, with no success…but maybe this year will be different? Either way, go here to read my story on the contest them of “a place I’ll never forget” – in this case, the place I call the shaman’s lagoon, in Haiti.
Applications close on March 21 and winners are announced April 12.
A few months ago I spoke with writer John McDermott of MEL Magazine about living with student debt. Recently, we had another brief chat about what it’s like marrying into debt. Read the final article here at MEL Magazine.
Normally that’d be throwaway color, but Trump’s skin is thinner than Betsy DeVos’ resume, so of course, as the leader of the free world, he felt slighted by the bathrobe comment, and forced Sean Spicer to go on the record for him during the White House’s daily comedy hour: “I don’t think the president wears a bathrobe, and definitely doesn’t own one.”
Fortunately, I saved my favorite picture of Führer Trump for this very moment:
Head over to the Center for Digital Ethics and Policy to check out my new article on the ethics of “lifelogging,” the technology you voluntarily choose to record and archive everything you do.
Some people have the blessing of a photographic memory, and lifelogging technologies have the potential to bring average people up to at least that level. But when the process of remembering is mediated, along with the memories themselves, whose memories are we actually collecting and accessing? What about when these memories can be hacked, altered or simply deleted? These questions are central to lifelogging technology. And as this technology eventually reaches a Malcolm Gladwell-style tipping point: If you can envision intellectual property lawyers and philosophers answering the same questions, you know you’re running into unexplored ethical territory.