Published

Memory dump

Life has felt kind of hard recently. Water running through my hands. So many things backed up in my “Blog stuff” folder in Notes, things I didn’t want to forget but wasn’t able to sit down and put in a post. Here’s a bunch so they don’t languish there forever. Oldest to newest.

Image of color gradient from white in lower left corner, through light blue to navy, with a tiny bit of pink in the upper right corner


I want to make a “Uses” page, but not just software/hardware. Skincare, furniture, kitchen tools, etc.


To read: Werner Herzog’s new book, The Twilight World. Or books? I don’t think the other one from lockdown is out yet. See this New Yorker interview. Via RS.


People talk about finding joy in the way your kid looks at the world. I really didn’t understand how moving that could be until recently. Hilarious, pure, and sometimes a little melancholic.

B was being funny about dinner because of a long day, so we just gave him a huge block of cheese to go ham. He couldn’t believe it. Imagine being handed a whole forearm-sized block of the best thing you’ve ever tasted in your short life.

He’d never seen anything like it, and I’ve never seen someone eyes go like that.


Generally more interested in the process than the outcome. In my work and others’. See CBToF (again), also the guy that’s piloting a tiny speedboat around Britain at his own pace. Boat guy via SB.


People in the US seem individualist to a fault.

A generalization, and obviously that individualism has certain upsides as well—don’t get me started on the way that UK schools force you to choose subjects so young—but I see the negative effects every day.

Was talking to DB, she mentioned how in the UK, there is a natural flow to walking. For example, getting between platforms on the tube. In NYC, it’s an absolute free for all.

Woman on the stairs at Broadway and Lafayette, walking up the left hand side of the stairs not holding on to the handrail when the person walking down, their right, clearly needs the handrail. “You see me fuckin comin, right?!” Wild.

[And do not tell me this is just a thing in US cities. I’ve seen it in suburban Tennessee, the middle of Ohio, all over the place. It just comes in different guises. An able-bodied person parking in a handicap spot in a packed Walmart parking lot, believing that Andrew Wakefield’s vaccine bullshit is more important than your children’s friends’ health, asserting that your right to any gun that could possibly exist is more important than reducing the likelihood of serious injury or death during a shooting in our schools and places of worship, etc.]


I think one of my least favorite phrases in the whole entire world has to be “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”.

It’s a turning away from the world. Announcing that, no, I don’t want to learn anymore thank you very much. No thank you, life is perfect for me as it is, heaven forbid I grow or change. Much better for the world to bend to me.

Gross.


Great article on accessibility: “Writing even more CSS with Accessibility in Mind, Part 2: Respecting user preferences” by Manuel Matzo.

See also: “Accessibility for Vestibular Disorders: How My Temporary Disability Changed My Perspective” by Facundo Corradini.

Came across these while writing a manual accessibility testing guide, an auditing system, etc. for SuperHi.


If things have been calm for a while in life, little stress and so on, I feel like my body can build up stress of its own accord. Is this some sort of innate expectation that if things are going well for a while, surely they must go wrong soon? A sort of fight/flight overture? If so, it kind of makes sense that exercise could help. Literally getting your ya yas out. Don’t know.


Getting properly dressed in the morning, makeup and everything, is such an important part of my day working from home. Don’t know what it is, but I really don’t feel like myself otherwise. I fell out of the cycle once a while back and it actually led to some really low points. It helps if my skin is cooperating.


Related to current events: So one time I had to get a birth control prescription refilled while we were visiting family in the Tennessee. This was in high school (maybe early college?). It was a little more complicated at that point to get a prescription transferred between pharmacies, especially between states, so it had stressed me out but I was able to get it sorted. Anyways, I got the prescription filled and went on my way. It was a very forgettable experience.

Until I got a text from the pharmacist. He used the private contact information in my file to reach out and ask if I was available.

I should have done something about it, but I didn’t know what to do. Thank god I didn’t live there, imagine having to go back.


The shooting in Uvalde happened, and I reflexively went on Twitter. I don’t know what it was about that moment in time, but the instant I started scrolling I felt actual revulsion. It suddenly clicked, how horrible Twitter can make me feel. It didn’t used to be like that. I haven’t really used it since then. I met some great people on it in the past, but that hasn’t happened in a long time. I hope people realize they can always reach out to me here.


Read Notes on maintaining an internal React component library, an article by Gabe Scholz. Via CDM.


Watch How I Code and Use a Computer at 1,000 WPM!! by blind coder Sina Bahram. See also Coyote, “a project developed by cultural heritage professionals and people from the accessibility community to encourage the use of visual description in museum practice”. Very cool. Via RS.


Read about Meno’s Paradox on this University of Washington faculty page. I do not know how to summarize it, only that I have tried to articulate this and have failed every time. Now maybe I can just refer to Meno’s Paradox, or at least to this page. Via CDM.


Read this Guardian article on a neurologist’s tips for fighting memory loss and Alzheimers. “Samuel Johnson said that the art of memory is the art of attention.”


Claire McCardell was incredible. She popularized separates for women! Capsule wardrobes! In like, the 30s!! This is a great article about her contribution to fashion: Claire McCardell originated The American Look (part 1)


Explore philosopher.life. Via LS.


To read: Social Warming: How Social Media Polarises Us All by Charles Arthur. Or not. It sounds worthy, but depressing.


Dig further in to Roni Horn’s work. Specifically, “Still Water (The River Thames, for Example)”. Via BL.


There is no reason to be anything but nice to strangers. It makes you both feel good. Being a dick to someone makes you both feel bad.

Yep, exactly. Well said, and happy birthday, Chris Coyier!


Thanks to B for the photo ❤️

Published

One way to fall asleep

Lying in bed for ages thinking “why can’t I get to sleep”, then I finally realize every muscle in my body, every fiber of my being is tense.

How does it surprise me every time? A mindful body scan usually does the trick.

***

When I was a kid, probably around 5, I distinctly remember this moment where I was lying in my twin bed staring at the doorway and suddenly thinking, “How do you fall asleep? … I don’t know how to fall asleep!”

I realized that I had never actually experienced the moment of falling asleep (of course not, I was half-asleep at that point) and started overthinking it. It became this process I didn’t understand, and then I was just lying there wide-eyed not understanding and confused about what to do next.

I’m not sure if it was that night or a few nights later, but I eventually asked my mom how to fall asleep. She looked at me and said, “… Um, just close your eyes?” I did, and to me the next day, it seemed like I had fallen asleep instantly. It felt like a revelation, that there was such a simple answer.

I sometimes notice nowadays, that moment between wakefulness and sleep.

Every once in a while I notice my thoughts getting weirder and more abstract and suddenly think, this is it. It’s quite an incredible state, nothing like it. I guess it’s lucid dreaming, but it’s so short… I try to stay in that state but it’s almost impossible, thinking about it wakes me up and leaning in to it makes me fall asleep.

Sometimes I get in to the same state upon waking, but unfortunately that’s usually because I’m coming out of a nightmare.

Published

first time using a hot water bottle

River Eden at sunrise, Appleby-in-Westmoreland

10 years ago today, I spent a few days at a very hospitable couple’s house in Appleby-in-Westmoreland, Cumbria. I was about two weeks in to a six-month stint studying illustration at Glasgow School of Art. This is the River Eden at sunrise when we walked in to town to pick up the paper.

They had a beautiful stone house on Battlebarrow and kept chickens in the backyard. I’d never seen a house quite like it, you just don’t get places that old in most of the US. They put a hot water bottle in my bed at night and introduced me to QI, both firsts for me. I was only there for a couple nights, and they made me feel very welcome in the UK during a time when I felt pretty untethered.