To The Girl Who’s Going to Break My Son’s Heart

iamthemilk

I wish you could see him as a four-year-old boy on the playground last week. Maybe you would change your mind. He was playing with a couple of new school friends, a boy and girl. They’ve discovered a broken tree covered in colourful ribbons. It was lying on the ground across from the sandbox right by the school fence. They were fully engaged in the game, tying and untying the ribbons, treating what they were doing with the seriousness children reserve only for games.

Then I notice the tilt of the head and the furrowed brow. Chin and voice are raised an octave as he says “umm…” I am the number one world leading expert on his body language and I know exactly what this means. It’s a classical “I’m going to ask for something and I’ll be as polite as possible, because it’s very important that everyone loves me…

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Skeuomorphic. Skewed Logic?

Skeuorphic

Neon Animal Stash

Nostalgia, sentimentality, kitsch. All words pointed at skeuomorphic design with a tangibly derogatory edge.

Just to clarify, skeuomorphs are objects or designs that maintain previously essential features as ornamentation. Wikipedia has a fantastically detailed page, give it a look over.

My favourite examples are intimately tied to our deepest assumptions of these modern-day products despite the redundancy of many of their features. For example, the rivets in your 21st Century stitched jeans, the woodgrain on plastic laminate flooring and the faux pagination of digital calendars that Clive Thompson excellently rips apart over at Wired.

Commentators on the Tech and Design industries are becoming increasingly wary, even exhausted by the proliferation of this philosophy. But what if – all this stuff (there really is no better word), is actually good?

The movement to full touchscreen devices, especially tablets and smartphones, has put interface designers in new territory – one that is…

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The First of My Fairy Godmothers

Godmother

Present Ghost

In a department store formerly known as Kaufmann’s, I met my first fairy godmother. Instead of glass slippers, she gave me tan knee-high go-go boots. If I am to be more precise, she didn’t give me the boots but she affirmed my right to wear them, which is far more important anyway.

My father and I were on our way out from the mall, and as we were passing the women’s shoe department, he told me we should stop and take a look around for sales. During high school, I hated casual shopping almost as much as I do now, so I objected and he insisted and won.

I pretended to be browsing while my dad rummaged through stacked boxes. From a few display tables away, I saw him lift an enormous box and shout, “What about these? They’re a deal!”

When I made my way over to him and…

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It’s A Great, Big, Beautiful Tomorrow! Just Not Today. Never Today.

Tomorrow

Blasfemmer

by Kat Letwin

I know you get asked this a lot, but: I’d like you to picture a timeline that encompasses the entirety of human existence.

On the left-hand side  of the timeline is the appearance of Homo habilis (2.3 million years ago), the “yesterday’s classics” to “today’s hits” in the KISS 92 FM world of human evolution. I once saw a silverback gorilla that looked hauntingly like my paternal grandfather, so I’m picturing that as Homo habilis, even though it’s not scientifically accurate to do so. On the right-hand side of the timeline is us, today, right this very second. I’m picturing us, today, right this very second, and it’s scientifically accurate to do so.

It was only 200,000 years ago that archaic Homo sapiens, inventors of fire and more fire, gave way to anatomically modern humans, inventors of Motown and physics. In the context of the…

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Knocking on Europe’s door

Knocking on Europe’s door

University Blog

Guest post by Dr Anna Notaro, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, University of Dundee

Last Friday, October 4th, was a day of national mourning in my native country, Italy. The reason was not some unpredictable ‘act of God’ or a natural calamity, but a recurrent tragedy and a preventable one. A boat full of African migrants sank off the coast of Sicily near the island of Lampedusa, only 70 miles from Tunisia. This is the latest and, given the scale (over 300 people feared dead), the worst migrant shipwreck the country has ever experienced. As a ‘privileged immigrant’ myself I have read the news reports with a particular sense of dismay. The people who lost their lives, no matter whether they were economic migrants or asylum seekers, are not simply a statistic; what the crude numbers cannot tell are the stories, the aspirations, the desperation of young men…

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The Peculiar Allure of Blog Search Terms

Allure of Blog Search terms

Samir Chopra

Like most blogging platforms WordPress provides statistics on blog views: unique visitors, referring pages, and most interestingly search terms that bring viewers here.  The following, for instance, are yesterday’s entries for this blog:

a municipal report what is the narrator’s attitude toward the south
failure of kindness
www american horror story season 3 walking dead
is it better for a jewish boy to be atheist or christian?
why i’m a pakistani first and punjabi second
what to put on professor door
brave announcement
bruce springsteen new york times op ed
nietzsche walter white
martin buber adolf eichmann

(A little game that may be played almost instantly on reading such a list is to try to guess which posts my visitors would have been directed to via the terms above. In the case of the list above, I can guess correctly in each case.)

I am not the first blogger to…

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101 Reasons Why You Have Not Truly Lived, Until You’ve Lived in NYC

NY city

Wonder Sonder

“Everyone should live in London at least once,” says a listicleImage published by London-based organization studentbeans.com, which serves up a great list of must-sees and dos that are tailored to make a tourist out of every well meaning graduate.

As a loyal New Yorker, I found myself wondering how London, with its terrible weather, strictly demarcated neighborhoods based on ethnic contexts, could possibly find itself at par with New York. Granted, the food is better than it’s given credit for, and there are niche neighborhoods in London that are phenomenal, as is the city’s architecture and green spaces.

However, with all due respect to all three of my siblings, who have lived or currently live in London, as well as scores of friends, I had to make a stance for the city I’ve called home for most of my adult life.

Let’s hear it for New York, folks.

Here are…

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