POV: Thoughts.

Friday, October 24, 2014

POV ("point of view") is a series that addresses many of the same themes covered in my Equals Record column: growing up, saying yes to adventure, learning to embrace a quarter-life crisis. Each POV entry will include a photograph and a short reflection based on what’s pictured. While my previous column focused largely on ideas, POV focuses on moments - glimpses, glances, tiny stories.  

In Chapter One of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, there’s a passage about how the children’s mother, Mrs. Darling, spends some period of time each night tidying the minds of her children, sprucing and straightening and setting things in order. 

“It is the nightly custom of every good mother after her children are asleep to rummage in their minds nad put things straight for the next morning,” the passage reads. “If you could keep awake (but of course you can’t) you would see your own mother doing this...you would see her on her knees, I expect, lingering humorously over some of your contents, wondering where on earth you had picked this thing up, making discoveries sweet and not so sweet, pressing this to her cheek as if it were as nice as a kitten, and hurriedly stowing that out of sight. When you wake in the morning, the naughtiness and evil passions with which you went to bed have been folded up small and placed at the bottom of your mind and on the top, beautifully aired, are spread out your prettier thoughts, ready for you to put on.”
I came across this bit of the story while reading aloud to my niece one afternoon over lunch. Because I found it terrifying — and feared she would, too — I skipped over it entirely.

Non-Career Advice: Emily Johnston.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Non-Career Advice is a series that asks people - young, old, and in a range of occupations - for words of wisdom unrelated to work, career-building, dollars, or getting ahead.

Emily Johnston / Artist + Photographer
Also: Owner of Gil / creator of collages / friend to many (myself included)
Age: 32

Embrace what's working — and give yourself a break. "I had a sort of identity crisis last year. It was a time of a lot of uncertainty — I was asking myself a lot of questions about what I was doing, what I wanted to be doing. I was putting a lot of pressure on myself in general. Then, out of nowhere, I remember having this amazing series of conversations over coffee with different women who were all really passionate about finding their own path, and who were determined not to adhere to a pre-scripted vision of what life is supposed to look like. At one point in the middle of this, I noticed that all of these women — every one — had dirty hair. I thought, here's this beautiful, inspiring girl who has her shit together, and her hair is a mess. It was an epiphany. It made me realize that I could let go of some of the pressure I was putting on myself. That my perfectionism wasn't necessarily serving me. That I can embrace what's working for me — and what I'm doing well — and not get caught up in other things that don't matter as much."

Beautiful. Thanks so much, Emily. Read more about the Non-Career Advice series, here.

Photo by Jack Sebastian via Emily's Instagram (one of my favorite feeds). 

Let Me Fly.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A little weird and a lot wonderful: portraits by Berlin's David Catá of faces swathed in dandelion seeds. Part of a series called Let Me Fly, they're dreamy, contemplative — perfect for perusing on a cloudy East Coast Tuesday, waiting for rain.

Visit David Catá's website, here. Thank you to Feature Shoot for the introduction.

Recommended Reading / 07.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Every Monday, words to start the week.

This week: I'm cheating a bit and posting a video, but only because it's too beautiful not to share. In it, João Silvestrini of Brazil hosts a tiny winged guest (who visits daily) for a meal in his kitchen. (As one commenter translates on Twisted Sifter: "First, he 'explains' to the bird that he is making a video. Then he says that the bird goes there every day to call him — 'today he has been calling for half an hour.'")

Three more links, just because:
-The good news.
-"Animals Make a Hospital Happy." (See also: a very funny piece on emotional support animals, including a turtle named Turtle at the Frick.)
-On handwritten letters: "Ink from your pen touches the stationary, your fingers touch the paper, your saliva seals the envelope, your scent graces the paper. Something tangible from your world travels through machines and hands, and deposits itself in another’s mailbox; their world… Letters create a connection that modern and impersonal forms of communication will never replace.”

More recommended reading, here. (Also, a big thank you for all of your incredibly kind words on last week's Non-Career Advice post — can't wait to share more!)

Weekend Note / 02.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Weekend notes are short-form POVs.

I visited the Met this summer with my six-year-old niece, who, on a ninety degree day, insisted on walking the fifteen blocks from the subway, skipping all the way. "Did you know," I said to her, "that people from all over the world travel to New York City to visit places like the Met? We're so lucky that we have the opportunity to go whenever we want to, even on a weekday afternoon." She held her pink metal water bottle with the tip of one finger, studying my face with serious eyes. After a moment's silence, she said: "Are you a grown-up? Or are you a kid?" Before I could answer, she was on to the next subject, chattering about zoo animals, and Central Park, and the various shades of purple she'd use to paint her new bedroom.  

Non-Career Advice.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Non-Career Advice is a series that asks people - young, old, and in a range of occupations - for words of wisdom unrelated to work, career-building, dollars, or getting ahead.

I woke up hours before my alarm on the morning before my 29th birthday. This was partly due to the fact that it was August, a time of year when my bedroom floods with sunlight at five AM. More likely, though, it was because my mind was ajitter with worried thoughts. I'd started a game with myself that involved matching facts about my life with the words "…and I'm almost thirty," and, no less than five minutes in, I'd morphed from a reasonable, thinking human being to an exhausted heap of frayed, frazzled nerves.

I live month-to-month… and I'm almost thirty. I have roommates… and I'm almost thirty. I don't have a plan - for anything, really… and I'm almost thirty.

The Cornershop.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Artist Lucy Sparrow's Cornershop is just like your average deli or neighborhood bodega, save for one minor detail. Everything — each ketchup bottle, candy bar, Coca-Cola, and copy of Carp Fishing Magazine — was made by hand with colored felt and, I'd imagine, lots and lots of patience. 

The London-based project required eight months of stitching to complete and resulted in a multi-thousand-item inventory that has since sold out. For a time, the shop was also home to a series of sewing workshops for the local community, with themes like "felt soup cans" and "fluffy drinks." 

Asked to name her favorite items, Sparrow lists the Nurofen, the custard, the Spam Fritters. "Not everything translates well into felt, but they do for some reason," she says.

Thanks, Honestly WTF. Visit Lucy Sparrow's website, here. Photos by Rosie Hallam/Barcroft Media.


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