One week of being 25 down, and I must say that so far, things have been pretty good. Spring is trying is hardest to show up in the Midwest, with varying degree of success, but I'm just going to be grateful for the little bits we get. Or maybe get angry when it's cold and gross. Who's to say, really.
More Single Men Means More Men With Beards: I'm a big fan of facial hair, and look at this - evolution explains why! Science! Beards! Woo!
An Emotional Map Of The City, As Captured Through Its Sounds: As big as emotions play in our everyday lives, it's not always something that is a part of our larger lives. They can be at times difficult to interpret, but this article brings emotions into our cities in a more straightforward way. The way in which the data is collected and organized and shared is absolutely fascinating, and I hope this work continues.
To Be Yourself Completely: The Collective Grief of Losing Prince: Grief is a weird thing, and a hard thing, and a completely unpredictable thing, and as bizarre as it can be, sometimes there are overlapping feelings between grief around the death of someone we know personally and around the deaths of people we never met ourselves. We often feel some sort of connection when celebrities, and I think especially musicians, pass away. Songs and movies and TV shows can take us back to such specific moments, and losing the person who made those moments special for us can take its toll. This article does a very wonderful job of explaining these feelings, as strange as they can be. Grief is grief is grief, and it is weird always. Take your time, and make your own path.
Speechless With Carly Fleischmann: Episode One (Channing Tatum): This video series is the first from Carly Fleischmann, a nonverbal woman with autism, who does this interview through typing out her questions and responses through technology. It is one of the funniest interviews I've seen, and Channing Tatum is a perfect gentleman throughout. Carly, here's to you!
Gwen Stefani Carpool Karaoke: Carpool Karaoke is the best, Gwen Stefani is the best, James Corden is the best, and the special guests here are the BEST. Go take 14 minutes for yourself and ENJOY.
Can't Stop The Feeling: Justin Timberlake, I've missed your beautiful face. And songs. Good luck trying to NOT dance while listening to this.
First Listen: The Staves, "Sleeping In A Car": The Staves are one of my long-time favorites, and I cannot wait to see them this summer in Chicago and at Eaux Claires. The Current has their upcoming EP on first listen, and I've been listening nonstop - it is some good stuff.
Love Written In Morning Dew: On Being is one of my favorites, as always, and Omid Safi's piece on the love we sometimes miss out on because it may not be directly in our line of vision is a beautiful reminder.
How Do You See Me Part One and Part Two: If you know me, you know that Down Syndrome has had a profound impact on my life. My younger brother Jason and Leo (the boy I nanny) both have Down Syndrome, and I have met some of the most interesting, wonderful, hilarious, intelligent, and delightful humans because of those connections. I remember being younger and feeling how different it can be at times - getting stares from people when our family was out and about, going to plenty of doctors and therapists, having him develop a little slower than other kids his age - and wishing plenty of times that I had a "normal" brother. But as the years went on, I came to realize that "normal" isn't anything I'm interested in, or anything that exists, really. Jason is an incredible human, Leo is an incredible human, and both of these videos make my heart so full and make me feel so lucky to have them both in my life.
Grace on Broadway: The Power of Hamilton: As a nerd in general, and an especially huge nerd about all history and music, Hamilton is one of my favorite things to come out of the last year. The music and lyricism are both absolutely incredible, and it's so interesting to see how much more connected we've all become to the American story through this musical. This article does a beautiful job of explaining how much it brings people together, in so many ways.
Kristen Bell On Camera Part One, Part Two, and Part Three: Kristen Bell has been a personal favorite of mine for awhile, and it seems as time goes on, she just gets better and better. Her relationship with Dax Shepard is one of the only things helping me believe that love is a real thing, and these interviews are absolutely stunning. She talks about changing your view on the world, on feeling all the feels all the time, and how important conversations around mental health and medication are. I feel like so much of what she has to say are things I've been trying to say, and I'm so grateful for her usage of her popularity to talk about real things that so many of us are trying to figure out, one day at a time.
May your weeks be full of grace and love and some damn good pop music dance parties. No shame.