Thoughty Thursday: Popping your mental corn, Sept 25-Oct 1, 2022

We’re rounding the bend to the weekend. Fortify yourself by getting your mental corn popping.

Amanda Connolly reports that Black public servants face trauma amid class action. Global News

Kimmy Yam and Shakshi Venkatraman reveal that Adnan Syed faced racial stereotypes in court that weren’t scrutinized. NBC News

Torture and ill-treatment of Haitian asylum-seekers rooted in anti-Black racism. Amnesty International

Jon Gambrell and Adam Schreck: Russia’s call-up splits EU; Ukraine says it shows weakness. Associated Press

Nadeem Badshah summarizes what we know on day 214 of the invasion. The Guardian

Ivana Saric: Nord Stream pipeline leaks were an act of sabotage, EU says. Axios

Amir-Hussein Radjy says Iran’s anti-veil protests draw on long history of resistance. Associated Press

Darren Major: on National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, Murray Sinclair challenges Canadians to be mindful, year-round. CBC

Peter Sagal puts a face on the senseless gun violence in the US: killed for walking a dog. The Atlantic

Rob Ferguson reports that Ontario tries to delay shutdown of Pickering nuclear station amid electricity “supply crunch,” sources say. The Toronto Star

Julia Simone-Rutgers: no place to live. One person’s search for a place to call home reveals a public housing system stretched to its limits. The Walrus

Jessica Stillman: a neuroscientist explains when it’s time to start worrying about your memory. Inc.

Shape-shifting fat cells fuel breast cancer growth. And they may lead to new treatments (!) Medical Xpress

Allie Volpe shares the sleep advice no one tells you. Vox

Ashawnta Jackson: vampires and public health. JSTOR Daily

Jenna Benchetrit says “quiet quitting” isn’t really quitting, but it’s forcing employers to adapt. Essentially, it’s the backlash against hustle culture. CBC

Clark Quinn considers the power of emotion. Learnlets

The fatal physics of falling objects. Veritasium

James Doubek: Jupiter is coming its closest to Earth in decades. NPR

NASA’s Juno shares first image from flyby of Jupiter’s moon Europa. NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Ashley Strickland reports that NASA’s DART mission successfully slams into an asteroid. One small collision for humankind … 🙂 Then, Webb, Hubble space telescopes share images of DART slamming into an asteroid. CNN

Sarah Collins says there’s new evidence of liquid water beneath the south polar ice cap of Mars. University of Cambridge

Smriti Mallapaty: China’s Mars rover finds evidence of catastrophic floods. Nature

Elizabeth Howell announces that SpaceX’s Crew-5 mission will carry Native American woman to orbit for first time. Space.com

Grace Toohey reports that Mexico earthquake triggers “desert tsunami” 1,500 miles away in Death Valley cave. Phys.org

John Bartlett: Gran Abuelo in Chile could be the world’s oldest tree. The Guardian

Dogs love the smell of stress. SciShow

More on the same: dogs can smell when we’re stressed, study finds. Phys.org

Thank you for spending a little time with me, 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, Aug 28-Sept 3, 2022

We’re rounding the bend and almost to the weekend. Pour on that last bit of speed by getting your mental corn popping!

Dr. Torvi, mid-operation.

No charges in police killing of Rayshard Brooks. BBC

How did Al Sharpton become a joke? Princess Weekes

Yessica Fisch reports that Russia, Ukraine trade claims of nuclear plant attacks. Associated Press

Dave Lawler: Ukraine launches counteroffensive to retake Russian-occupied Kherson. Axios

Jamey Keaten and Edith M. Lederer announce that the UN cites possible crimes against humanity in China’s Xinjiang. Associated Press

Jessica Stillman explains how to spot an emotional vampire and a 5-step process to defeat one, when you do. Inc.

Dr. Patricia Lockwood: scientists pinpoint the brain area responsible for effortful helping behaviour (AKA altruism). The University of Birmingham

Bill Hathaway wonders what makes the human brain different? Yale neuroscientists reveal clues. Yale News

Stefan Van der Stigchel reveals what the science says about daydreaming and concentration. The MIT Press Reader

Guy Kawasaki interviews Fran Houser about how to kindly, gently, and powerfully embrace your work. The Remarkable People Podcast

Laura Ungar: zombie cells central to quest for active, vital old age. Associated Press

The world’s highest jumping robot. Veritasium

Tariq Malik reports that NASA calls off Artemis I moon rocket launch over engine cooling issue. Space.com

Webb inspects the heart of the phantom galaxy. The European Space Agency

Hannah Devlin reveals historic JWST images showing exoplanet in unprecedented detail. The Guardian

S.N. Johnson-Roehr: Caroline Herschel claims her comet. JSTOR Daily

The ominous reason Phobos has lines on it. SciShow Space

Mount Sinai Hospital researchers find spaceflight may be associated with DNA mutations, increased risk of heart disease, and cancer. Phys.org

Dinah Voyles Pulver: melting Greenland ice sheet will raise sea levels nearly a foot, study finds. USA Today

Leo Sands reports on the Pakistan floods: one third of the country is under water, minister says. BBC News

Abir Ahmar: parched UAE turns to science to squeeze more rainfall from clouds. Reuters

Sarah Keartes explains how giant isopods got supersized. Hakai Magazine

Thank you for stopping by. 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, Feb 27-March 5, 2022

Happy Friday eve! Fuel the thoughty moving into the weekend by getting your mental corn popping!

Daniella silva reveals that three former officers on federal charges in George Floyd’s killing. NBC News

People should cheat on their taxes. Every “How did we get here,” part 4. The Amber Ruffin Show

Marycarmen Lara Villanueva: in Mexico, erasing Black history fuels anti-Black racism. The Conversation

Liz Tracey annotates Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic “I have a Dream” speech. JSTOR Daily

Rina Torchinsky reports that in Texas, an unrelenting assault on trans rights takes mental toll. NPR

Yuras Karmanau, Jim Heintz, Vladimir Isachenkov and Dasha Litvinova report that Putin puts nuclear forces on high alert, escalating tensions. Associated Press

The editors provide a background reading list on Ukraine, Russia, and the West. If you want to distract yourselves from the news to get some perspective. JSTOR Daily

Ukrainians won’t be separated from beloved pets as residents shelter from Russian attack with cats and dogs. The Independent

Morgan Godvin: crime wave or moral panic? JSTOR Daily

Crappy hiring practices that have to die, and some new ones we need to adopt. Non-profit AF

Robert R. Raymond says that it’s time to shorten the American workweek. Truthout

Andrew Pulrang highlights ableist narratives that poison disability policy and disabled peoples’ lives. Forbes

Guy Kawasaki interviews Deepa Purushothaman, author of The First, the Few, the Only: How Women of Color Can Redefine Power in Corporate America. The Remarkable People podcast

Clark Quinn touts the value of examples before practice. Learnlets

Joe finds out what’s actually on the other side of the mirror. Be Smart

James Somers takes a journey to the center of our cells. The New Yorker

Corryn Wetzel: brain scans reveal that our life does flash before our eyes when we die. The Smithsonian Magazine

John Geddie and Joe Brock announce the “biggest green deal since Paris:” UN agrees on plastic treaty roadmap. Reuters

Bobby McFerrin demonstrates the power of the pentatonic scale.

Thanks for stopping by, and 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: popping your mental corn. www.melaniemarttila.ca

Thoughty Thursday: Popping your mental corn, Feb 13-19, 2022

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

Cornelius Fortune introduces the independent voices of the Black American press. JSTOR Daily

Ashawnta Jackson is remembering Emmett Till in song. JSTOR Daily

Police Brutality isn’t new. Every How Did We Get Here (part 2). The Amber Ruffin Show

Frankie Graziano and Laura Wamsley: families of Sandy Hook victims reach $73 million settlement with Remington. NPR

Catharine Tunney reports that the federal government invokes emergencies act for the first time in response to protests. CBC

Andrew Duffy provides a timeline of the occupation of Ottawa. The Ottawa Citizen

Michael Woods and Ted Raymond cover the Ottawa occupation: police hand out leaflets warning downtown protesters to leave. CTV News

Standoff between protestors and massive police operation stretches into night. CBC

Tara Henley says, “Get insanely curious when no one else is curious.” A conversation with Amanda Ripley about the Ottawa occupation and high conflict.

Harold Jarche outlines our new normal in perpetual beta.

Devin Dwyer and Sarah Herndon: “Broken Heart” cases surge during covid, especially among women. ABC News

Benjamin Ryan shares that scientists have possibly cured a woman of HIV for the first time. While the treatment is specific to a subset of patients who have Leukemia in addition to HIV, it could direct new research. NBC News

Carmen Leitch: human neurons found to be surprisingly different from other mammals. Lab Roots

Paul Withers reveals that Facebook to begin laying cable (for Metaverse) through fishing grounds off Nova Scotia. CBC

Move over, JWST! Five new telescopes to get excited about. Dr. Becky

Bob McDonald: astronomers are fighting back against satellite constellations. CBC’s Quirks and Quarks

Victor Tangermann reports that scientists propose permanent human habitat built orbiting Ceres. It’s like something straight out of The Expanse. Futurism

Are we finally on the road to fusion power? SciShow

Structured thermal armor achieves liquid cooling above 1000 degrees Celsius and solves challenge presented by the Leidenfrost effect. It should work for both aero and space engines as well as nuclear reactors. Phys.org

Simon Akam reveals a new story for Stonehenge. The New Yorker

Iceland to end whaling in 2024 as demand dwindles. The Guardian

Thanks for spending some time with me. 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, 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: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, July 11-17, 2021

It’s time to get your mental corn popping! Let’s get right to it …

Ohimai Amaize unpacks the “social distance” between Africa and African Americans. JSTOR Daily

Charlottesville removes Robert E. Lee statue that sparked deadly rally. NPR

Thema Bryant-Davis and Egypt Leithman (of Pepperdine University) want to heal the wounds of racial trauma. Division 45

Allison Hopper: denial of evolution is a form of white supremacy. Scientific American

Louisiana teen, Zaila Avant-garde correctly spells “muraya” to win Scripp’s National Spelling Bee. ESPN

Zoé Samudzi is looking after (museums and human remains). Art Forum

Huu-ay-aht First Nation begin process of reclaiming cultural artefacts from Royal BC Museum. CBC

Coaches argue Laurentian’s pool must remain open: community impact will be “immense.” Sudbury.com

Could solar panels in space solve our energy needs? SciShow Space

Susan Montoya Bryan and Marcia Dunn report that billionaire Richard Branson reaches space in his own ship. Maybe reaches for space? Associated Press

Do we have more than five senses? Spoiler: hella yeah. SciShow Psych

Lauran Neergaard: device taps brainwaves to help paralyzed man communicate. Associated Press

Barrie, Ontario, devastated by tornado that left 5-kilometre path of destruction. CBC

Rescuers rush to save hundreds trapped by flooding in Europe as death toll tops 125. CBC

True facts: wild pigs (and their crazy cousins). ‘Cause fun and educational 🙂 Ze Frank

John Flesher reports that pup births a hopeful sign for Ilse Royale wolves. Associated Press

Thanks for taking the time to visit, 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: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, May 16-22, 2021

Happy Friday eve! Get your mental corn popping in anticipation of a lovely weekend!

Laurel Wamsley: prosecutor says deputies were justified in their fatal shooting of Andrew Brown Jr. NPR

The University of Washington reveals that almost all kinds of air pollution affect people of color hardest. Futurity

Khari Johnson: Black and queer AI groups say they’ll spurn Google funding. Wired

Fedora Abu introduces us to Britain’s first Black aristocrats. BBC

Kim Tran shows you the Asian American activism you won’t see on Instagram. Refinery 29

Geeta Pandey reports that India’s holiest river Ganges is swollen with covid victims. BBC

You can’t prove everything is true. Veritasium

Yuliya Talmazan reveals that BBC’s Martin Bashir used “deceitful” methods to secure Princess Diana interview. NBC

The neuroscience of tongue-twisters. SciShow Psych

Randy Pascal: Alex Baumann adds voice to Laurentian pool discussion. The Sudbury Star

Kayla Barron joins NASA’s SpaceX Crew-3 mission to space station. NASA

What the crater from the extinction of the dinosaurs taught us about Mars. SciShow Space

Sierra Garcia wonders what green hydrogen will mean for international relations. JSTOR Daily

Patrick Barkham introduces us to the farmers putting trees back into UK fields. The Guardian

Related: Olivia Box also touts silvopasture, or, why are there cows in the woods? JSTOR Daily

Karen Zamora explains how a fungus is making cicadas sex-crazy (side-effect, dismemberment). NPR

Richard Luscombe says that sharks use Earth’s magnetic field as guidance system. The Guardian

Thank you for taking the time to visit, 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: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, April 11-17, 2021

It’s time to get your mental corn popping with thoughty Thursday.

Mohamed Ibrahim: Minnesota officer meant to draw taser, not handgun. Why didn’t she, then?  Associated Press

Cheryl Teh: police in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, prohibited tear gas—then broke the rule almost immediately. Insider

Jim C. Hines offers his thoughts on American violence and American racism.

Daikin Andone and Chris Boyette report that two Virginia police officers used excessive force during traffic stop of army officer. CNN

Livia Gershon explains how the media covered police brutality three decades ago. JSTOR Daily

Ashawnta Jackson looks back at Sesame Street’s first Black Muppet: Roosevelt Franklin. JSTOR Daily

Caitlin Dickerson: America never wanted the poor, tired, huddled masses. The Atlantic

Bryann Aguilar: Ontario gives police authority to stop pedestrians, vehicles, to ask purpose of travel. CTV

Jane Gersterthen reports that Ontario police won’t conduct random spot checks despite their new authority. CBC

Staff and students stressed and uncertain as Laurentian University job terminations announced today (April 12). CBC

And here’s the list of programs being discontinued. They’re calling it Laurentian University’s Black Monday. Sudbury.com

Charlie Angus speaks eloquently in defense of Laurentian University. CPAC

Casey Stranges reports that all hockey and swim varsity teams chopped as Laurentian cuts continue. CBC

What neuroscience can learn from meditation. SciShow Psych

Ashifa Kassam explains how a tiny grain could change how humanity eats. The Guardian

Jaclyn Diaz reports that Floridians catch meteor’s close brush with Earth. NPR

Donna Sarkar: Earth has been hiding a fifth layer in its inner core. Discover

Naomi Fry touts the low-key, Carter-era pleasures of The Muppet Show. The New Yorker

True facts: trap jaw ants. Ze Frank

Thank you for taking the time to visit. 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.

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, March 7-13, 2021

We’re half-way through March and heading for the vernal equinox. Reward yourself with some informal writerly learnings.

K.M. Weiland continues her archetypal character arcs series with part five: the king arc. Helping Writers Become Authors

Janice Hardy shows you five places to find your novel’s theme. Then, Janice lists four steps for choosing what details to describe in a scene. Later in the week, Angela Ackerman recommends you do this one thing to write unforgettable characters. Fiction University

Princess Weekes: Lovecraft Country … was just not that good. Melina Pendulum

Lisa Cron returns: still crazy after all these years. Then, Jim Dempsey lists five reasons you need a professional editor. Juliet Marillier celebrates wild women. The Cailleach and Baba Yaga, two of my personal favourites! Later in the week, Kathryn Craft explains how authenticity builds a satisfying author career. Then, David Corbett looks at two approaches to dramatizing character change: Emma vs. Hamlet. Writer Unboxed

Shaelin explains how to convey emotion in your writing. Shaelin Writes

Jane Friedman considers which is better for authors, blogging, or an email newsletter. Then, Lisa Cooper Ellison shares three traps that subvert our ability to receive feedback. Jane Friedman

C.S. Lakin explains how to face down writer fear. Live, Write, Thrive

The ice queen trope, explained. The Take

Kris Maze offers five dialogue quick tips for page-turning fiction. Later in the week, Piper Bayard and Jay Holmes list ten common bedroom object to use as weapons. In a pinch. Writers in the Storm

Jami Gold discusses setting as character. Later in the week, David Duhr wonders, do you focus on the doing or the having? Writing process vs. product. Writers Helping Writers

In defense of basic. What does it meme? The Take

Laura Highcove wonders, why does it feel like you can’t write after a writer’s conference? Then, Manuela Williams explains how to nurture your reader community. Later in the week, Elly Griffiths advises you to follow the feet. Then, Angyne Smith shares five things that saved her novel from oblivion. DIY MFA

Jenna Moreci shares her structuring method.

Lucy V. Hay offers a comprehensive guide of ALL. THE. STORY. STRUCTURES. Informative and somewhat overwhelming. Bang 2 Write

Chris Winkle explains why you should watch out for hindrance characters. Then, Oren Ashkenazi points out five problems with focusing on internal conflicts. Mythcreants

Kristen Lamb extols the art of embracing the suck: commitment matters.

Julian Lucas shows how Octavia Butler reimagines sex and survival. The New Yorker

Stephanie Burt: we live in the world of WandaVision. The New Yorker

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you found resources to support your current work in progress.

Until Thursday, be well and stay safe!

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Jan 24-30, 2021

It’s Thursday, and you know what that means. Tomorrow is Friday! Prepare yourself for the weekend by getting your mental corn popping.

Dalton Walker reports how the “parade across America” has an Indigenous touch. Indian Country Today

Mali Obomsawin: this land is whose land? Indian country and the shortcomings of settler protest. Smithsonian Folklife

Mildred Europa Taylor wants you to meet the eight-year-old neuroscientist who teaches online from a lab in her bedroom. Face2Face Africa

Russell Contreras: Biden picks up his pen to change the tone on racial equity. His first set of executive orders puts a “down payment” on the promise of racial justice in America. Axios

John Haltiwanger notes that Biden administration speeding up process to put Harriet Tubman on $20 bill. Business Insider

Maudlyne Ihejirika announces that the Emmett Till childhood home is now an official city landmark. Chicago Sun Times

Stephen Humphries reveals the new museum celebrating African American music from Ella to Beyoncé. Christian Science Monitor

Amir Vera and Raja Razek: two Kenosha police officers, on administrative leave since the Jacob Blake shooting, are back on duty. No justice. CNN

Doha Madani reports that the Black woman whose children were handcuffed and held at gunpoint by police sues Aurora, Colorado. NBC News

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin demands US military sexual assault reports. The Guardian

Lauren Frayer: protesting farmers flood India’s capital, storm historic fort. NPR

The pandemic that lasted 15 million years [Say what, now?] | PBS Eons

L.D. Burnett posits that there is no such thing as cancel culture. Only culture, shapeshifter that it is. Arc Digital

Kim Fahner responds to Bell’s let’s talk day: of whales, icebergs, and mental health … The Republic of Poetry

Sara Jaffe: notes on queer conception and the redefinition of family. JSTOR Daily

Dr. Becky shares the new evidence against dark matter.

Robert Z. Pearlman shares that Axiom Space names the first private crew to visit the ISS. Scientific American

Earth has a second magnetic field. SciShow

Fiona Harvey: global ice loss accelerated at record rate. The Guardian

These pools support half the people on Earth. Veritasium

Cal Flyn reports that as birth rates decline, animals prowl out abandoned “ghost villages.” The Observer

Nina Munteanu: when nature destroys … and creates.  

Thank you for spending some time with me. I hope you took away something to inspire your next creative project.

This weekend, I should be posing my January 2021 next chapter update.

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