The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

I keep a book journal. In it, I keep track of everything I read, the dates on which I cracked it open and slammed it shut, give it a rating out of five stars, and write a few lines. It was my blog before I started my blog. I read The Hate U Give in one day last September, and though I didn’t immediately share my thoughts with you lovely people, I did write three pages worth of notes in my little red “What I Read Journal.” Here’s what I thought then, and still do now:

THUG_ThomasMaybe it’s because I’ve just read The Autobiography of Malcolm X, or because I’ve recently come to enjoy and appreciate the music of NWA, or because of everything happening in the US right now, but I feel like all of these things and more have converged so that when I did read this incredible book, I would have better context and the message might ring louder and truer. This novel deserves to be read by everyone. Forever. Thomas did a remarkable job depicting all sides of the conflict—victims, cops, white friends, black culture . . . this is not a one-sided manifesto—it is an important commentary on violence, racism, the cultural divide, community, friendship, and family and so much more. It’s shocking and engrossing and is really about how, if you want change, you have to speak up for yourself and for what you believe in; you have to fight against those who oppress you and fight even harder against your own fears. This book is frustrating, and heartbreaking, and frighteningly like real life, but it is funny, and hopeful, and a damn. good. book. 

Oh, and I gave it seven stars. For real.

No. 1 on my challenge.

Advertisements

AuthaGraph World Map; I want it.

Have you seen this new world map? It won a prestigious design award in Japan and is now being used in text books for Japanese students.

Authagraph

Now, I have a map on my wall at home. It was a $5 purchase from the local bookstore that I threw in a cheap, ill-fitting Walmart frame and wrote “wanderlust” along the side of—et voila, decor. It’s hung behind my couch for about four years now, and just a few months ago I was alerted to the fact—by my intoxicated friend, no less—that it is severely out of date. It features the Dominion of Canada, the USSR, and Yugoslavia for crying out loud. Antarctica isn’t even on it! It’s probably actively making me dumber.

But this map is way better. It’s up to date on the world’s countries, it includes all the continents, AND it shows us just how far we’ve been mislead by every single map we’ve ever seen. I’m telling you, the AuthaGraph is friggen cool. And to prove it, I’ve stolen an entire article from all_that_is_interesting.com.

On November 3, 2016, reporter Michael Gardiner reported:

You probably don’t realize it, but virtually every world map you’ve ever seen is wrong. And while the new AuthaGraph World Map may look strange, it is in fact the most accurate map you’ve ever seen.

The world maps we’re all used to operate off of the Mercator projection, a cartographic technique developed by Flemish geographer Gerardus Mercator in 1569. This imperfect technique gave us a map that was “right side up,” orderly, and useful for ship navigation — but also one that distorted both the size of many landmasses and the distances between them.

To correct these distortions, Tokyo-based architect and artist Hajime Narukawa created the AuthaGraph map over the course of several years using a complex process that essentially amounts to taking the globe (more accurate than any Mercator map) and flattening it out:

Narukawa’s process indeed succeeded in creating a map that no longer shrinks Africa, enlarges Antarctica, or minimizes the vastness of the Pacific — and the list goes on.

In recognition of Narukawa’s success, he’s now beaten out thousands of other contestants to receive this year’s Grand Award from Japan’s Good Design Awards, and his map is featured in textbooks for Japanese schoolchildren.

“AuthaGraph faithfully represents all oceans [and] continents, including the neglected Antarctica,” according to the Good Design Awards, and shows “an advanced precise perspective of our planet.”

Furthermore, according to Narukawa, his map means a lot more than just a faithful cartographical representation of our planet. Because Earth is now facing down issues like climate change and contentious territorial sea claims, Narukawa believes that the planet needs to look at itself in a new light — a view that perceives the interests of our planet first and its countries second.

You’re doing it wrong, Googler

Entertainingly enough, one of the most common Google searches that bring people to my site is “Chicago Med Tori”. Until now, there were two reasons for which a misguided Googler might arrive here using those terms:

  1. I posted a very short note about Chicago P.D. (Which is also created by Dick Wolf and exists in the same TV universe as Chicago Med, and of which I cannot get enough. The third season just ended and I need to know what happens to Hank. I NEED to.)
  2. They’re spelling the actress’ name wrong. (Don’t worry. I would never spell “Tori” as “Torrey” either.)

But, hey, if this is how I’m going to expand my army of one to an army of, like, five or six (you’ll find out for what I plan to use my army at a later date), I’m more than happy to oblige. So, here you go, Googler. Here is all you might want to know about “Tori” from Chicago Med (and probably a bunch of things you don’t care to know about me).

Actress Torrey DeVitto plays Dr. Natalie Manning on Chicago Med. (I played Six, the sixth child born to redneck parents too lazy to come up with actual names for their children, in a community drama production of Hillbilly Weddin’ in the early 2000s—my performance was pretty much on par with hers, and there is no proof to suggest otherwise).

TorreyDiVitto.png

Continue reading “You’re doing it wrong, Googler”

#TBT

This week was kind of momentous, and I have the perfect Throwback Thursday post to celebrate. Published in May 2012, this was the last article I ever wrote for the Virden Empire-Advance. Though I was taking distance courses from SFU the entire time I was living and working in Manitoba, my decision to uproot my life, leave family and friends, and move to Vancouver was really the beginning of what ended so momentously this week. So, for your reading pleasure:

So Long, Farewell—A Love Letter to My Readers

When I was in university, studying my Bachelor of Arts in English, I was constantly pestered by my family (Dad in particular) about the possibility of moving home after school and working for a newspaper indefinitely. Every time, I adamantly refused that as a possibility. No way was I going to be a reporter.

Now, that may seem like an odd intro for an editorial written by a staff reporter, but please, allow me to explain myself. I’ll start at the beginning (sort of).

Continue reading “#TBT”