“We now know that 24 hours without sleep, or a week of sleeping four or five hours a night induces an impairment equivalent to a blood alcohol level of .1 percent. We would never say, ‘This person is a great worker! He’s drunk all the time!’ yet we continue to celebrate people who sacrifice sleep for work.”—
“I consider the way I occasionally break down—not from this, not from her, but before, always, from work or a lack of sleep or from, usually, something far less specific. Once in a while, in the middle of a weekday afternoon, while walking or using the bathroom, I might become fixated on a conversation from the day or the month before, and decide I was wronged. Or I snap at my mother. Or I feel an anger I cannot quite articulate, something missing, something sad. This is a loss of reality, too, and I can imagine, as I lift myself out of it, or wake the next morning recovered, that maybe hers is a similar kind of struggle, only it lasts for months, for years. Or perhaps it doesn’t.”—What The Websites Tell Me To Do by Jessica McCaughey (via therumpus)
No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.
We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.
I’ve never been female. But I have been black my whole life. I can perhaps offer some insight from that perspective. There are many similar social issues related to access to equal opportunity that we find in the black community, as well as the community of women in a white male dominate society…
When I look at — throughout my life — I’ve known that I wanted to do astrophysics since I was 9 years old…I got to see how the world around me reacted to my expressions of these ambitions. All I can say is, the fact that I wanted to be a scientist, an astrophysicist was hands down the path of most resistance through the forces of society.
Anytime I expressed this interest, teachers would say, ‘Oh, don’t you wanna be an athlete?’ I want to become someone that was outside of the paradigm of expectations of the people in power. Fortunately, my depth of interest of the universe was so deep and so fuel enriched that everyone of these curve balls that I was thrown, and fences built in front of me, and hills that I had to climb, I just reach for more fuel, and I just kept going.
Now, here I am, one of the most visible scientists in the land, and I wanna look behind me and say, ‘Where are the others who might have been this,’ and they’re not there! …I happened to survive and others did not simply because of forces of society that prevented it at every turn. At every turn.
…My life experience tells me that when you don’t find blacks, when you don’t find women in the sciences, I know that these forces are real, and I had to survive them in order to get where I am today.
So before we start talking about genetic differences, you gotta come up with a system where there’s equal opportunity, then we can have that conversation.
“Too many young women I think are harder on themselves than circumstances warrant. They are too often selling themselves short. They too often take criticism personally instead of seriously. You should take criticism seriously because you might learn something, but you can’t let it crush you. You have to be resilient enough to keep moving forward, whatever the personal setbacks and even insults that come your way might be. That takes a sense of humor about yourself and others. Believe me, this is hard-won advice I’m putting forth. It’s not like you wake up and understand this. It’s a process.”—Hillary Clinton on how to handle criticism & other advice for young women, The Cut (via middlenameconfused)
“From now on I live for myself. I have been living for others for many years. I have wasted so much time and gotten nothing in return. I will fade out these activities and start living for myself. I can’t get back all the years but I can get back my life.”—Henry Rollins (via thatkindofwoman)
“A few years ago, when I first starting reading and writing about Dovlatov, I focused on the wickedly humorous side of Dovlatov’s deadpan. But a few years later, and a few more books into his body of work, I find myself more interested in that earnestness and regret — in Dovlatov the evolving man and artist, who crafted and, yes, honed a version of himself in his fiction that was just distorted enough to be true.”—Sonya Chung, “Sergei Dovlatov: Gravity, Levity, and Love” (via millionsmillions)
“Do you know what people really want? Everyone, I mean. Everybody in the world is thinking: I wish there was just one other person I could really talk to, who could really understand me, who’d be kind to me. That’s what people really want, if they’re telling the truth.”—Doris Lessing, The Golden Notebook (via thatkindofwoman)
"Kids in the foster system, especially older kids, tend to be invisible in society. When they are portrayed in the media, they are shown in extreme stereotype, either as the victim or the criminal in a message-laden after-school special. I wanted to show Matt as a regular kid and the hero of his story, a kid making the best of a less than ideal situation."
—LJ Cohen (From an interview appearing today on the Examiner)
April is National Poetry Month, a time when poets and would-be bards alike turn their attention to verses both free and formal. If you’re going to write poetry, why not try giving your work a unique twist, something that editors of literary magazines don’t already have piling up on their desks? Here are five unexpected poetry forms to inspire your muse and make your poetry stand out.
One early spring evening when Celia was fourteen and the rest of us girls thirteen or nearly so, Uncle Dan came home, carrying a sack of groceries Aunt Libby had ordered over the phone, and saw a troop of boys sprawled around on the porch or hanging from the railings and balustrades. He…