Thoughty Thursday: Popping your mental corn, Jan 2-8, 2022

It’s time to get your mental corn popping in time for the weekend.

Jelani Cobb: justice for Ahmaud Arbery. The New Yorker

Vanessa Romo, Becky Sullivan, and Joe Hernandez report on the conviction of the officer responsible for Daunte Wright’s death. (Dec. 23, 2021) NPR

Brett Forester and Fraser Needham report that Canada and First Nations report details of $40 billion draft deals to settle child welfare claims. It’s the biggest settlement in Canadian history. This is what the Feds were doing when they appealed to the HRC last year. You’d think they’d just come out and say they were aiming to provide a bigger payout, no? APTN News

Ryan Patrick Jones: Ontario’s new pandemic strategy risks “out of control” transmission, epidemiologists warn. CBC

Sharon Guynup: can covid-19 change your personality? Here’s what the brain research shows. National Geographic

Gavin Francis says, “We need to respect the process of healing.” A GP comments on the overlooked process of recovery. The Guardian

Joe Palca: a Texas team comes up with a covid-19 vaccine that could be a global game-changer. NPR

Jodi McIsaac relates her fumbling attempt to reconnect with the child she gave away. The Globe and Mail

Your brain once had a superpower. Could you get it back? SciShow

Cal Newport says that it’s time to embrace slow productivity. We need fewer things to work on, starting now. The New Yorker

S. Mitra Kalita lists three New Year’s resolutions for employers right now. Charter Works

Lauren Grush reports that NASA successfully deploys complex sunshield on James Webb Space Telescope. The Verge

Sidney Perkowitz introduces eight women astronomers you should know. JSTOR Daily

Jonathan O’Callaghan: graphene loophole could provide “clean and limitless” energy in the future. ILFS

We’re drowning in plastic pollution. Can we actually fix it? Be Smart

Nicola Davis reports that dogs may be able to tell difference between speech patterns. The Guardian

Carol Mithers: the veterinarian brings his healing presence to pets of the unhoused. The Smithsonian Magazine

Thanks for visiting, and I hope you found something to inspire a future creative project.

Until next tipsday, be well and stay safe; be kind and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

Thoughty Thursday: Popping your mental corn, Dec 12-18, 2021

It’s time to gear up for the busy holiday weekend by getting your mental corn popping!

Nicquel Terry Ellis and Eva McKend: Black parents say movements to ban critical race theory is ruining their children’s education. CNN

Nylah Burton explains what we lose when we focus on whiteness in interracial relationships. Refinery 29

Gary Younge: what covid taught us about racism—and what we need to do now. The Guardian

Princess Weekes and Yhara Zayd celebrate Gabrielle Union (Gab the GOAT) and offer an F-U to colorism and tokenism. Melina Pendulum

Clara Pasieka: Popular N.W.T. tourist attraction becomes on-the-land healing camp. CBC

Dan Ninham: Boozhoo! Ojibwe-speaking puppets hit the airwaves. Indian Country Today

Dorothy Stewart interviews legendary Abenaki filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin: much more profound than hope. CBC

Sarah N. Lynch reports that abuse survivors reach $380 million settlement with USA Gymnastics. Reuters

Sudbury’s Laurentian University to get provincial bailout as members of board of governors resign. CBC

Three types of identity crisis (and how to deal with them). Like Stories of Old

Matthew Blackman: does law exist to provide moral order? JSTOR Daily

Diana explains what Schrödinger’s cat really means. Physics Girl

Sierra Garcia reports on the process of destroying “forever chemicals” for good. JSTOR Daily

Elisa Shoenberger says, go ahead, call your dog your “fur baby.” Science supports you. Slate

Thanks for visiting. I hope you found something to inspire a future creative project.

Merry Christmas, all!

And until next tipsday, be well and stay safe; be kind and stay strong. The world needs your stories.

Thoughty Thursday: Popping your mental corn, Oct 24-30, 2021

And … this will be the last thought Thursday until December 9th! Get your mental corn popping 🙂

The media and the missing; ‘Missing White Woman Syndrome’ explained | Khadija Mbowe

Tanya Talaga reveals that Canada has not truly released all residential school records. The Globe and Mail

Martha Troian: a Cree family’s canoe is returned, after sitting in a University of Saskatchewan storage room for years. Maclean’s

Haley Ott reports that UK women are being drugged by needles in nightclubs. It’s the evolution of the roofie, folks. CBS News

Mari Yamaguchi: Japan’s Princess Mako relinquishes royal status to marry commoner. Associated Press

Public Health Sudbury and District issues covid-19 order as region becomes a hot spot. And we were doing so well … CBC

Sarah Larson reveals Brené Brown’s empire of emotion. The New Yorker

Dopamine isn’t just a happy chemical. SciShow Psych

William Deresiewicz: human history gets a rewrite. The Atlantic

GM to install 4,000 electric car charging stations across Canada. CBC

Ben Turner: scientists capture images of bizarre “electron ice” for the first time. Space.com

Tariq Malik reports that the Sun fires off major solar flare from Earth-facing sunspot. Space.com

An alternative to dark matter? SciShow Space

Jackie Wattles reveals that the alarm that went off on SpaceX’s all-tourist spaceflight was … the toilet. Toilet humour in SPACE #FTW! CNN

Olivia Box explains why the belowground ecosystem matters. JSTOR Daily

Suzanne Simard, author of Finding the Mother Tree, heads up The Mother Tree Project.

Kelli Bender reports on very good doggo Bear, who saved koalas during the Australian wildfires, and was honoured with an award. People

Mary Jo DiLonardo announces that dozens of bison released on Sioux tribal lands in South Dakota. Treehugger

Squil-le-he-le Raynell Morris and Tah-Mahs Ellie Kinley: one stolen whale, the web of life, and our collective healing. Grist

Thank you for taking the time to visit, and I hope you took away something to inspire a future creative project.

I’ll pop in on the weekend for my first mini-update.

Until then, be well and stay safe; be kind and stay strong. The world needs your stories.

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Aug 22-28, 2021

Welcome to September! It’s time, once again, to get your mental corn popping.

Kristin Corry says that the new era of Black reality TV feels more like real life. Vice

Umme Hoque: the pandemic put adult pressures on many young girls. Prism

Ben Andrews: hundreds join the final leg of residential school survivor’s 79-day “Walk of Sorrow.” CBC

Elissa Carpenter reports that the former residential school sites at Piikani Nation are being investigated: “It’s not going to be an easy task.” CBC

Ryerson University to (finally) change its name amid reckoning with history of residential schools. But we’ll have to wait until next spring to find out what the new name will be. CBC

Kory Floyd explains why we missed hugs. The Conversation

Alain de Botton on existential maturity and what emotional intelligence really means. Brain Pickings

Why are so many autistic adults undiagnosed? Kip Chow | TEDxSFU

Christy Ann Conlin: the old lady who waits within me. CBC

A two-for from Livia Gershon. First: the changing meaning of “mysticism.” Then, she describes a holy trinity in ancient Egypt. JSTOR Daily

Jessica Stewart: Vermeer painting restoration reveals a cupid painting obscured for over 350 years. My Modern Met

Why we should be thinking about energy storage. Physics Girl

Alyse Stanley invites you to go on a panoramic video tour of Mars with the Curiosity Rover. Gizmodo

Tom Metcalfe reports that Hubble captures an “Einstein Ring.” NBC News

Kate Aranoff: is democracy getting in the way of saving the planet? The Guardian

Alex Young shares Nandi Bushell’s performance of “Everlong” with the Foo Fighters at the Forum. I’m not ashamed to admit, tears of joy came to my eyes when Nandi started playing. Consequence

The real reason dogs kick when you give them skritches. SciShow

Thank you for stopping by, and I hope you took away something to inspire a future creative project.

This weekend, I should be posting my next chapter update for the month of August.

Until then, be well and stay safe, everyone!

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, June 6-12, 2021

Let’s get your mental corn popping, shall we?

Benjamin Wallace-Wells: what do conservatives fear about critical race theory? The New Yorker

Algorithms and skin tone bias, or, being dark on “breadtube.” Kadija Mbowe, your cool, millennial aunty

Pope calls for reconciliation and healing over Kamloops residential school discovery but falls short of true apology. CBC (via Reuters)

Andrew Lupton and Kate Dubinski: what we know about the Muslim family in the fatal London, ON truck attack. CBC

Jacqueline Howard: in controversial decision, FDA approves first new Alzheimer’s disease drug in nearly 20 years. CNN

Matt Grossman reports that Jeff Bezos and his brother will be on Blue Origin’s first human space flight. The Wall Street Journal

The “slow” crisis of space junk. PBS Space Time

Joe Hernandez shares pictures of the June 10th “ring of fire” solar eclipse for those who, like me, missed it. NPR

Joe Hernandez: scientists finally know (for sure) what causes the northern lights. NPR

Amanda Parrish Morgan: The Hunt of the Unicorn tapestries present a virgin capture legend. JSTOR Daily

Why do flamingos stand on one leg? SciShow

Alex Fox reports that puppies are born ready to communicate with humans. The Smithsonian Magazine

True facts about the dangerous tick. Ze Frank

Thank you for visiting. I hope you took away something to inspire a future creative project.

Until next tipsday, be well and stay safe, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, March 28-April 3, 2021

Thoughty Thursday is here. A little short on material that will get your mental corn popping this week. I’ve been cutting down on news for self-care purposes. Sorry. There’s still some excellent material here, though.

Susan Du and Nicole Norfleet: prayer service on eve of Derek Chauvin trial urges peace, unity, and justice. Star Tribune

Victoria Bekiempis announces that, for the first time, four women of colour command US navy warships. The Guardian

Matthew Barakat and Michael Kunzelman: high court rules that Charlottesville can remove confederate statues. Associated Press

Elissa Nadworny introduces us to the people cleaning a college campus during a pandemic: “without us, this campus shuts down.” NPR

Emma Graham-Harrison reports that Beijing cuts Hong Kong’s democratically elected seats in radical overhaul. The Guardian

Women/yn/xn, origins, labels, and the right to self-identify | Khadija Mbowe

Jacqueline Rose examines the damage silent forms of violence against women cause. The Guardian

Matthew Wills explains how women first learned self-defence. JSTOR Daily

Anton Troianovsky: hunting ghost particles beneath the world’s deepest lake. The New York Times

Amanda Kooser: dubbed “one who causes fear,” newly discovered dinosaur was a true, meat-eating terror. CNet

Elle Hunt reports that the rediscovery of a rare gecko delights experts. The Guardian

Kathryn Schulz explains why animals don’t get lost. The New Yorker

Lily Feinn tells the sweet tail (pun intended) of Sisu, the stray who kept trying to steal the same purple unicorn from a dollar store. The Dodo

Thank you for taking the time to visit. I hope you found something to inspire your next creative project.

Until next tipsday, be well and stay safe, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Oct 4-10, 2020

Welcome to thoughty Thursday, the curation that pops your mental corn 🙂

BLM-related posts and pandemic-related posts separated out for your convenience. Educating yourself is the least you can do.

Mako Fitts Ward examines the power of the intersectional protest image. JSTOR Daily

Jennifer Schuessler: Mellon Foundation to spend $250 million to reimagine monuments. The New York Times

Maya King hopes the Democrats don’t lose the battle over voter suppression. Politico

Kim Gallon: the Black press and disinformation on Facebook. JSTOR Daily

What is the QAnon conspiracy theory? CBS News

Janice Gassam Asare cites five reasons the “pipeline problem” is a myth. 2018. Again, these aren’t new issues. Forbes

John Paul Tasker reports on Annamie Paul’s historic election as the first Black [+Jewish+woman] leader of the Green Party [or any Canadian political party, for that matter]. CBC


Maan Alhmidi: teachers are concerned for their health and the quality of education as they deal with the challenges of the pandemic. The Globe and Mail

Kalyn Belsha says that teaching in-person and virtually at the same time is an instructional nightmare. ChalkBeat

How do pandemics end? BBC

Becky Little explains “mask slackers” and “deadly” spit: the 1918 flu campaigns to shame people into following the new rules. History

Sara Chodosh: it’s never been more important to get your flu shot. Popular Science

Lydia Wheeler: covid “long-haulers” ask who pays when sickness just won’t end. Bloomberg Law


Simi lists 30 signs of soul exhaustion. Medical News

What causes panic attacks and how can you prevent them? Cindy J. Aaronson TED-Ed

Nell GreenfieldBoyce and Madeline K. Sofia: the Nobels overwhelmingly go to white men—this year’s prize for medicine was no exception. NPR

Joel Achenbach reports that Andrea Ghez is among the winners of the Nobel Prize in physics for her work on black holes. The Washington Post

Dr. Becky delves into the work done to earn that Nobel.

Nell GreenfieldBoyce and Mark Katkov cover the Nobel Prize for Chemistry win for Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna for their genome editing research. NPR

And … the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize goes to the World Food Program. Adela Suliman for NBC News.

Olivia Rosane shares a video of a meteoroid bouncing off Earth’s atmosphere. EcoWatch

Rory Sullivan and Sharon Braithwaite report that scientists have found intact brain cells in a man killed in Vesuvius eruption nearly 2,000 years ago. CNN

These 100-million-year-old microbes are still alive. (I think I shared an article on this a few weeks ago …) SciShow

Hedy Phillips: yep, just like humans, dogs can give blood. More than half my life ago, I worked in an emergency veterinarian clinic. They kept two blood donor cats on site and assessed surrendered or stray dogs (animal control was the next building over) for blood donor suitability. SugarPop

Thank you for visiting. I hope you found something to inspire your next creative project.

Until next tipsday, be well and stay safe, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Sept 20-26, 2020

It’s time to get your mental corn popping.

BLM and covid-19 sections precede more general links.

Tessa Duvall offers a fact-check on the Breonna Taylor case. USA Today

Dylan Lovan, Piper Hudspeth Blackburn, and John Minchillo report on the two Louisville officers shot during the Breonna Taylor protests. Why? “The violence comes after prosecutors said two officers who fired their weapons at Taylor, a Black woman, were justified in using force to protect themselves after they faced gunfire from her boyfriend. The only charges were three counts of wanton endangerment against fired Officer Brett Hankison for shooting into a home next to Taylor’s with people inside.” AP News

Russell Contreras reveals how the story of the underground railroad to Mexico is gaining attention. Associated Press

Jacinda Townsend explains how the Green Book helped Black travellers navigate a segregated nation. Yes, this is from 2016. These conversations aren’t new. The Smithsonian Magazine

Sam Levine explains how Republicans gutted the biggest voting rights victory in recent history. Voter suppression/poll taxing in action. The Guardian

Mohammed Elnaiem revisits the death of South African activist Steve Biko. JSTOR Daily


Nicole Karlis reports that a covid vaccine may only last for a year based on the most recent findings. Salon

Olga Khazan: a failure of empathy led to 200,000 deaths. It has deep roots. The Atlantic

How losing your job changes you. SciShow Psych

Richard Herzog explains how Aztecs reacted to colonial pandemics. JSTOR Daily


Richard Wolf calls Justice Ginsberg a superhero who never quit as she returns to Supreme Court one final time. Ginsberg is the first woman to lie in state. USA Today

Jackson Katz: violence against women—it’s a men’s issue. This TED talk is from 2012. Have we made significant progress since? TEDxFiDiWomen 

Ruth Tam advises you to lift your head and lower your arms—you just might feel better. NPR

Meghan Keane explains how to say no, for the people pleaser who always says yes. NPR

Stephen E. Nash: what fire archaeology tells us about the bringing of the American West. Atlas Obscura

The truth about dog years. SciShow

Thieving pikas in the Rockies. Because pikas are CUTE! The Nature of Things | CBC

Sarah Miller Llana considers the Sudbury model: how one of the world’s major polluters went green. Christian Science Monitor

It’s probably not life on Venus … but it could be. SciShow Space

Thor Benson reveals project A119 and the time we almost nuked the moon. Wild. Digital Trends

Alex Sanz: NASA astronaut Kate Rubins intends to vote from the ISS. AP News

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you found something to inspire your next creative project.

This weekend I should be posting my next chapter update for September (!) Seriously, where has the time gone?

Until then, be well and stay safe, my writerly friends.

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Aug 30-Sept 5, 2020

Welcome to thoughty Thursday. Tomorrow is Friday! Revive yourselves for the weekend by getting your mental corn popping 🙂

Theresa Waldrop shares the latest news about the Portland protest shooting death. CNN

Safia Samee Ali: where protesters go, armed militia and vigilantes likely follow with little to stop them. NBC News

Ashitha Nagesh explains how “hyper-liberal” Portland’s racist past is resurfacing. BBC

The peace reporters. Videos of police violence at #BLM protests with the testimony of the people who took them. Content warning on this one. The videos of police violence are difficult to watch. They’re optional, though. You can just read the words of the people who took the videos and get a sense of what it means to be a witness in these difficult situations. The Verge


Jesmyn Ward waxes on witness and respair: a personal tragedy followed by pandemic. Vanity Fair

Why Tuesday feels like July and sometimes never during covid (how we perceive time). It’s Okay to be Smart

Jessica Stillman: the Greeks had a word for the specific kind of bad you’re feeling right now. Acedia. Inc.

Patrick Adams wants us to meet Gertrude Elion, the woman who gave the world anti-viral drugs. National Geographic


Heidi Wachter explains why we need to fill the greenspace gap. Shondaland

Studying the brain with quantum mechanics. SciShow Psych

Rachel Kraus wonders, what is an algorithm, anyway? Mashable

Jess Romeo sheds light on the long history of comet phobia. JSTOR Daily

Emily Zarka introduces us to Spring-Heeled Jack. PBS Storied | Monstrum

Daniel Oberhaus: gravity, gizmos, and Jim Woodward’s grant theory of interstellar travel. Wired

The Martian crustal dichotomy. SciShow Space

Carrie Whitney introduces us to the man behind the legend of Sitting Bull. How Stuff Works

Chadwick Boseman, rest in power. New Rockstars

Leah Greenblatt pays tribute to Chadwick Boseman: his life, his legacy, and his iconic roles. Entertainment Weekly

Stan Horaczek explains how cats and dogs see the world. Popular Science

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you took away something to inspire your next creative project.

Until next tipsday, be well and stay safe, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, April 19-25, 2020

I hope you’re bearing up in these surreal times. Try not to feel pressured to learn a new language or finish that novel or whatever weighs on your creative conscience. Interest will return when it will, the words will sing their siren song again. It just may take some time. Be kind to yourself. We’re all struggling.

While you adjust to our changing circumstances, don’t forget to feed your brain with some interesting stuff. Get your mental corn popping with thought Thursday 🙂

50 things we’ve learned in the 50 years since the first Earth Day. The Smithsonian Magazine

And, while Earth Day was last week, there’s no reason for you not to extend the celebration. Kaitlin Thomas lists 20 ground-breaking nature documentaries you should watch. TV Guide

It’s also the 30th anniversary of the Hubble Space Telescope. It’s okay to be smart celebrates with a fly-through of some of the best images. And a lovely poem by Dr. Katie Mack!

Kristine Wen shows you how to cook and bake with lavender without making your food taste like grandma’s soap. Chow Hound

Kier Holmes explains how to use coffee grounds in your garden. Gardenista

Olivia Kelly is watching Dublin bloom: city thrives under new “wilding” policy. The Irish Times

Jelisa Castrodale reports on the 1,000-year-old mill that’s resumed production due to lack of flour. Food & Wine

Sarah Wells: tech eroded sleep quality in the 1800s. Can tech restore it now? About biphasic sleep, the advent of electricity, and sleep trackers. Inverse

Katie Falkingham reveals the strict and secret world of bicycle racing in Japan. BBC

Amanda Capritto says, this is the best time of day to exercise (backed by science). Spoiler: it’s any time you can bloody well fit it in 🙂 Cnet

Will Bardenwerper: army ranger school is a laboratory of human endurance. Outside Online

Riley Black explains why bats are one of evolution’s greatest puzzles. The Smithsonian Magazine

Zoe Denenberg wonders why dogs walk in circles before they lie down. Southern Living

Thanks for visiting. I hope you took away something to inspire your next creative project (even if it stays in percolation mode for a while).

Until next tipsday, be well and stay safe, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories.

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