Logan: Hey MIKE! Let’s talk about this week on the site. Starting with the interview we just published with Jake Smith. You told me you thought I didn’t push him hard enough. Want to elaborate?
Mike: Jake was an interesting interview subject for the series because he’s very well-read—not just in terms of all those personal finance books, but he’s aware of specific struggles happening within the middle class, and about those championing those struggles, mainly Elizabeth Warren. So understanding that, and that the typical middle class household doesn’t have multiple homes and cars and hundreds of thousands of dollars to invest—it just seemed to me like there was a little bit of a disconnect. I guess I just wanted there to be a moment where he just said, “Yes, I am a part of the one percent. No question. And yes that makes me comparatively rich. But I just don’t feel that way.” Which, fair enough. You’re rich, you just don’t feel rich. You are allowed to feel however you want. READ MORE
• Heading north on Main in a green Civic
• Catching up on Scandal
• Beach time
• Deep breathing
• Hot yoga
• Coffee line at Stumptown
• Baking a cake (funfetti)
• Naps (multiple)
• Trying on bathing suits at Target
• Selling clothes at Buffalo Exchange
• Writing a sestina
• Googling sestina
• Researching flights to Bogata, “just for fun”
• Doing dishes
• Reading the Hunger Games, again
• Sopranos marathon
• Working out
• Thinking about working out
• Getting tested for food allergies
• Finger painting
Whether godless or godly, we all consult a private pantheon of authorities, living or dead, to gauge our comportment. We read ethics columns on subway trains and in cafes for vicarious solutions to our secret troubles. Since the days of Dear Abby and Ann Landers, the availability of emotional and behavioral self-help information has grown exponentially. In the digital age, now adrift in a wide, shallow sea of media outlets, wondering where to turn for advice only increases our anxiety. Cable TV and the Internet have left us splintered and atomized; they’ve negated the comforting clarity of our few favorite go-to gurus.
One such erstwhile guru has just left us for official divinity. You probably hadn’t seen Dr. Joyce Brothers on the small screen in a while (though you may still catch the AlertUSA emergency response ad in some TV markets) and were perhaps surprised that she had been yet among us. But if you are of a certain age, she was already wedged into your psyche, an unacknowledged aspect of your superego guiding your attitudes and behavior. For a significant hunk of the 20th century, millions of us asked: “What Would Dr. Joyce Brothers Do?” READ MORE
We’ve come a long way, as a species. And we’re better at many things than we ever were before – not just slightly better, but unimaginably, ridiculously better. We’re better at transporting people and objects, we’re better a killing, we’re better at preventing infectious diseases, we’re better at industrial production, agricultural and economic output, we’re better at communications and sharing of information.
But in some areas, we haven’t made such dramatic improvements. And one of those areas is parenting. We’re certainly better parents than our own great-great-grandparents, if we measure by outcomes, but the difference is of degree, not kind. Why is that?
Practical Ethics, the ethical news blog by the University of Oxford, is tackling the question: Why aren’t companies selling us products to make us super-parents?
Well, there are some products (visit the “Parenting & Family” section at the bookstore and take a peek)—it’s just that everyone has their own personal beliefs on what it means to be a “super-parent” and raise well-adjusted children. Plus, children do this thing sometimes where they don’t listen to you no matter what you say or do.
This email showed up in my inbox yesterday. At no point was I tempted to send this person money, but until the, oh, third paragraph (“There are two options by which this transaction can be delivered.”), I definitely was thinking about how I’d edit this letter to run on the website as a true tale of fortunes made and lost in wartime. Editorial integrity: High. READ MORE
“As soon as you hit Google’s territorial waters, you came under our jurisdiction, our terms of service. Our laws–or lack thereof–apply here. By boarding our self-driving boat you granted us the right to all feedback you provide during your journey. This includes the chemical composition of your sweat. Remember when I said at I/O that maybe we should set aside some small part of the world where people could experiment freely and examine the effects? I wasn’t speaking theoretically. This place exists. We built it.”
I was thirsty, so I drank the electrolyte solution down. “This is delicious,” I replied.
“I know,” he replied. “It also has thousands of micro sensors which are now swarming through your blood stream.”
“What… ” I stammered.
This, by Mat Honan, is kind of incredible.
Good morning! Time for Friday estimations.
This weekend, I’m attending the baby shower of two of my very good friends, so I’ll be going to the baby store to buy baby things. I used to work at a baby store in high school, so I know what people like to buy (and receive) for baby showers, so this will be breeze. I’m not going to say what I’m thinking of getting because my friends may be reading this (hi guys!). I’m also planning on meeting up with some friends on Sunday for a drink and maybe a quick bite ($25). My estimation is $150 for the weekend.
What are your estimations?
Photo: ticklish moose