Inspiration! Roundup: New Categories for Humans, You're Not Really Special, Light Art, Tunnel Vision, and More!

This Week's "I want to go to there": I want to travel somewhere very far from here! Hong Kong, maybe?
Photo by Sean Foley.

A New Category

I got a HUGE kick out of this thread, discussing different ways that aliens might categorize humanity besides gender. Just another reminder that we could have just as easily divided by whether or not we like cilantro. (And in fact, that may be a more meaningful division.)

Not All That Special

This interview with poet José Olivarez is pretty great, especially if you're a person who is pretty high-achieving, used to have things come easily, and maybe is learning what it's like to struggle (or maybe has been learning this lesson for, oh I don't know, 15 years but it's slow to sink in).

"I was a straight-A student in high school. I went to Harvard University. I had a job getting out of college. Then I moved to New York, and I was fired from a job. Before I was hired at YCA [Young Chicago Authors], I couldn’t find a job. I got rejected from grad school, I got rejected from everything. I had relationships fail, and I learned that I wasn’t perfect as a person, or as a partner.

It was either going to break me—that I had such high expectations for myself and that I turned out to just be a regular person—or, I was going to revel in that. Through the help of therapy I came to see my imperfections as something that I could revel in, and take joy from. Like the fact that I write bad poems. Instead of hating myself for it, I could be more compassionate with myself. Then in that compassion I could make room to go back and do a second draft and a third draft, and so on and so forth."

He also quotes poet Lucille Clifton: "your voice is not unique." That one is piercing, in a good way and a bad way. Not sure what to do with it yet.

Light Art

Josh Sheldon creates art using a light animation robot he built in his dorm room. It's pretty neat.

A post shared by Josh Sheldon (@heyjshel) on


"Over-scheduled people develop a kind of tunnel vision. They're just keeping their heads above water - scrambling from one meeting to the next, or one to-do list item to the next - and they become less insightful, less controlled, and less forward-thinking."
-Jocelyn K. Glei

I hear the heck out of that.


Artist Lola Dupre takes photos of pets that are famous on Instagram and distorts them. It's quite delightful.

A post shared by Lola Dupre (@loladupre) on

Not Desolate

“As long as there is one upright man, as long as there is one compassionate woman, the contagion may spread and the scene is not desolate. Hope is the thing that is left to us, in a bad time.”
– E. B. White

It's nice to remember that as much as it can feel like selfishness and greed and hatred is spreading, so can compassion and strength and hope.

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