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Continuous Sidewalks

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This video highlights one of the ways in which the Netherlands makes their streets safer for pedestrians: continuous sidewalks. Instead of sidewalks ending at the curb and picking up on the other side of the street, many sidewalks in Dutch cities continue across roadways, at the same height and using different surface materials, forcing cars to slow and signaling to drivers to be alert for pedestrians.

It’s hard to describe how much nicer it is to walk in an environment like this. It feels like the people walking are in control and that drivers are a guest in their environment, not the other way around.

(via @davidfg)

Tags: architecture   cities   Netherlands   video
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emdot
4 days ago
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want
San Luis Obispo, CA
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The Circular, Drought-Resistant Gardens of Senegal

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As part of the Great Green Wall initiative, Senegal has been building circular, drought-resistant gardens to keep the Sahara desert from spreading any further. The Kid Should See This explains how they work:

These Senegalese farmers plant the spiraling gardens with a plan to hold water: Medicinal plants in the inner circle, three rows of vegetables, with fruit and nut trees next. The outer circles are created with large baobab trees and African mahogany trees.

Tags: Senegal   video
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emdot
18 days ago
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inspiring. i want a circular garden. inspiring, too, because of the work these people are doing. it will help themselves, their communities, their continent. the animals. i hope for more movements like this.
San Luis Obispo, CA
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The indignity of being observed

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Sally Rooney on the hell of fame: ‘It doesn’t seem to work in any real way for anyone”
Guardian headline

* * *

Text from an author friend: “I’ve literally never heard of this person.”

* * *

“People who intentionally become famous — I mean people who, after a little taste of fame, want more and more of it — are, and I honestly believe this, deeply psychologically ill. The fact that we are exposed to these people everywhere in our culture, as if they are not only normal but attractive and enviable, indicates the extent of our disfiguring social disease. There is something wrong with them, and when we look at them and learn from them, something goes wrong with us.”
—a novelist in Sally Rooney’s Beautiful World, Where Are You?

* * *

Text to my wife with the Rooney excerpt: “Show me the lie.”

* * *

“It’s easy to trust that fame is a deeply mixed blessing, but everything that rock stars (literary and otherwise) seem to have discovered about that fact is simple and repetitive.”
John Williams, review of Beautiful World, Where Are You?

* * *

“Once an artist is swept up in the exigencies of fame, it becomes hard for them to object without sounding like a diva, or to complain without sounding like an ingrate.”
Molly Fischer

* * *

“I’m just so sick of myself. I can’t imagine how everyone else feels.”
—Ryan Gosling

* * *

Fame is experienced as an impact, like a car crash.”
—a psychologist in Hollywood Reporter

* * *

“There’s nothing about fame that I’ve ever seen that’s healthy. It is something that is very hard to survive and has no intrinsic value unto itself.”
—Shep Gordon, Supermensch

* * *

“Fame in a world like this is worthless.”
—Marcus Aurelius, 121–180 A.D.

* * *

“I’m Nobody! Who are you?
Are you – Nobody – too?
Then there’s a pair of us!
Don’t tell! they’d advertise – you know!

How dreary – to be – Somebody!
How public – like a Frog –
To tell one’s name – the livelong June –
To an admiring Bog!”
— Emily Dickinson

* * *

Eddie Murphy, recalling the worst heckle he ever heard: “You ain’t nobody!”

* * *

The writer Roddy Doyle tells a story about being famous in Ireland:

“I was waiting at Tara Street Dart station for a friend, and there was a bunch of lads coming down the quays, all in their late teens, lads in tracksuits, and one of them broke away and came right up to my face and said, ‘Are you Roddy Doyle?’”

“And I said, ‘I am, yeah.’”

“He said, ‘So what?’”

* * *

Tommy Tiernan: To be well known in Ireland, to me, is a blessing… It’s local.

Liam Cunningham: There’s a healthy begrudgery here, isn’t it?

* * *

In all the stories about Sally Rooney’s attitudes towards fame, I’ve heard very few people wonder whether her being Irish has anything to do with it.

* * *

I think about another Irish woman, Sinead O’Connor, who says, of her fame, “I feel that having a No. 1 record derailed my career.”

* * *

“In many ways, fame is the industrial disease of creativity – it’s a sludgy byproduct of making things.”
—Mike Myers

* * *

“Fame is hollow. It amplifies what is there. If there is any self-doubt, or hatred, or lack of ability to connect with people, fame will magnify it.”
—Alanis Morissette

* * *

Fame promises freedom from worry about the opinion of others only to trap the aspirer inside an even larger audience.”
—Leo Braudy, The Frenzy of Renown

* * *

Well, you’re in your little room
and you’re working on something good
but if it’s really good
you’re gonna need a bigger room
and when you’re in the bigger room
you might not know what to do
you might have to think of
how you got started
sitting in your little room!”
The White Stripes

* * *

“You have to learn to be unafraid when you’re a nobody, because you’re going to be really fucking afraid when you’re a somebody and all the lights are on you.”
Lady Gaga

* * *

“One can’t work
by lime light.”
Kay Ryan

* * *

“Celebrity, even the modest sort that comes to writers, is an unhelpful exercise in self-consciousness. Celebrity is a mask that eats into the face. As soon as one is aware of being ‘somebody,’ to be watched and listened to with extra interest, input ceases, and the performer goes blind and deaf in his over animation. One can either see or be seen. Most of the best fiction is written out of early impressions, taken in before the writer became conscious of himself as a writer. The best seeing is done by the hunted and the hunter, the vulnerable and the hungry; the ‘successful’ writer acquires a film over his eyes. His eyes get fat. Self-importance is a thickened, occluding form of self-consciousness. The binge, the fling, the trip — all attempt to shake the film and get back under the dining room table, with a child’s beautifully clear eyes.”
John Updike

* * *

“The only thing that comes from fame is mediocrity.”
—Sleater-Kinney, “Hey Darling

* * *

Fame is wasted on everybody… except Kanye.”
—Noel Gallagher, 2015

* * *

“Celebrity is the great American canvas, and Kanye makes a great mess of that canvas.”
The Ringer, 2021

* * *

“Are you not entertained? Are you not entertained?”
—Russell Crowe in the movie Gladiator, sampled by Jay-Z in “What More Can I Say?”

* * *

“We all have a contract with the public—in us they see themselves or what they would like to be…. They love to put us on a pedestal and worship us…. But they’ve read the small print, and most of us haven’t…. So, when we get knocked off by gangsters… or get hooked on booze or dope or… just get sold… the public feels satisfied. Yeah, it’s a good idea to read that small print.”
—Clark Gable, quoted in Leo Braudy’s The Frenzy of Renown

* * *

“One has to completely humiliate oneself to be what the Beatles were.”
—John Lennon

* * *

“I’ve had one motto which I’ve always lived by,” Gene Kelly tells us in Singin’ in the Rain, “Dignity. Always Dignity!” (We’re then treated to a montage of Kelly’s character surviving the various humiliations of filmmaking.)

* * *

In Here is New York, E.B. White wrote that one reason people from small towns escape to the big city is to avoid “the indignity of being observed.”

* * *

This very same “indignity of being observed” is what so many seek.

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emdot
33 days ago
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Yup!
San Luis Obispo, CA
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Beauty

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“If the beautiful were not in us, how would we ever recognize it?”
– Ernst Haas

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emdot
51 days ago
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San Luis Obispo, CA
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How To Cut Every Cheese

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The path to my heart is paved with cheese.

(via my bud Chris)

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emdot
53 days ago
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San Luis Obispo, CA
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The Truelove

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“There is a faith in loving fiercely
the one who is rightfully yours,
especially if you have
waited years and especially
if part of you never believed
you could deserve this
loved and beckoning hand
held out to you this way.

I am thinking of faith now
and the testaments of loneliness
and what we feel we are
worthy of in this world.

Years ago in the Hebrides,
I remember an old man
who walked every morning
on the grey stones
to the shore of baying seals,
who would press his hat
to his chest in the blustering
salt wind and say his prayer
to the turbulent Jesus
hidden in the water,

and I think of the story
of the storm and everyone
waking and seeing
the distant
yet familiar figure
far across the water
calling to them

and how we are all
preparing for that
abrupt waking,
and that calling,
and that moment
we have to say yes,
except it will
not come so grandly
so Biblically
but more subtly
and intimately in the face
of the one you know
you have to love

so that when
we finally step out of the boat
toward them, we find
everything holds
us, and everything confirms
our courage, and if you wanted
to drown you could,
but you don’t
because finally
after all this struggle
and all these years
you simply don’t want to
any more
you’ve simply had enough
of drowning
and you want to live and you
want to love and you will
walk across any territory
and any darkness
however fluid and however
dangerous to take the
one hand you know
belongs in yours.”

David Whyte

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emdot
57 days ago
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beautiful
San Luis Obispo, CA
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