Welcome to the 161st edition of The Newsletter Leaf Journal, the official newsletter of the perennially virid online writing magazine, The New Leaf Journal. This newsletter comes to you as always from the waterproof keyboard of the editor of The New Leaf Journal, Nicholas A. Ferrell. We have a solid week of publishing, so I look forward to sharing our new articles, links from around the web, and other news and notes to hold you over through Thanksgiving.
I published five new articles since mailing newsletter 160.
"I Voted" Sticker Appears in Pocket
N.A. Ferrell. November 11, 2023.
I am going with the "magic" explanation.
On Coach Jimbo Fisher's Buyout
N.A. Ferrell. November 14, 2023.
I could not pass on the opportunity to write about Texas A&M paying a man $76.8 million to not coach its football team.
Hair Color in the Apothecary Diaries Anime
N.A. Ferrell. November 15, 2023.
The Apothecary Diaries is an excellent (thus far) currently-airing anime series. But despite its good start, I decided that the internet could use some hair color analysis.
Hair Color in Raven of the Inner Palace
N.A. Ferrell. November 15, 2023.
Apothecary Diaries (see above) has a fictional setting based on ancient China. One of my favorite 2022 anime series was actually set in ancient China. It had its own interesting hair color situation, so I turned that into an article.
October 25 Thanksgiving in Grenada
N.A. Ferrell. November 17, 2023.
Last year I covered Thanksgiving in the Philippines. This year we fly to Grenada. Grenada's Thanksgiving is distinct from Thanksgiving in the United States while commemorating an event that very much involved the United States.
My publishing two new anime hair color articles inspired me to put together single hub for all of my articles on hair color in Japanese anime, manga (including light novels), and games (all visual novels thus far). You will find my collection here. I list all of the articles in the order they were published with links and short summaries. After a brief internal debate, I opted to also include my two articles on real world hair color-dress code issues in Japanese schools since they are related to my 2D world project.
I continue to work on developing The Emu Café Social for short-form content. I published three new posts there in the last week.
Let's check in on the world wide web...
It won't be forgotten at The New Leaf Journal. Whoops. Forgot the "spoiler alert."
Roosters May Recognize Their Reflections in Mirrors, Study Suggests
Will Sullivan for Smithsonian Magazine. October 27, 2023.
What did you do at work last week?
Researchers Taught Parrots to Video Call Other Parrots
Schuyler Velasco for Northeastern Global News. April 21, 2023.
Just wait until they pick up instant messaging.
The Mysterious Norwegian Art of Painting on Dead Fish
Jessica Leigh Hester for Atlas Obscura. November 16, 2023.
The art was done 100 years ago and promptly lost.
Small Dog Wearing Red Bow Found Hidden in Picasso Painting
Teresa Nowakowski for Smithsonian Magazine. May 18, 2023.
Let's call it an Easter Egg.
On Writing For Yourself In Public
Wouter Groeneveld at Brain Baking. November 6, 2023.
My anime hair color collection post and all of its links are for the people.
You Paid $1,000 for an iPhone, but Apple Still Controls It
Tripp Mickle, Ella Koeze, and Brian X. Chen for The New York Times. November 12, 2023.
I most certainly did not. Speak for yourselves.
Why Are American Troops Still in Iraq and Syria?
Justin Logan for Reason. November 10, 2023.
Reason is not my go-to source for foreign policy takes, but...
After Syria airstrikes, what is the US endgame?
Daniel DePetris for Washington Examiner. October 27, 2023.
1,000 U.S. Soldiers In Niger Need To Come Home Right Now
Rand Paul for The Federalist. October 27, 2023.
I generally agree with the junior Senator from Kentucky's conclusion, although I do not agree with all the arguments he made to get there.
Saturn's Rings Will Temporarily Disappear From View in 2025
Carlyn Kranking for Smithsonian Magazine. November 13, 2023.
Sounds like someone is trying to preemptively explain a big failure.
Alligators in the sewer myth is true: Watch city workers find out
Ben Cost for the New York Post. May 11, 2023.
Think carefully about this headline.
Radioactive Water Was Once A (Horrifying) Health Fad
Donald Papp for Hackaday. November 10, 2023.
Not sure that Hackaday is the best place for this article...
Possible antidote discovered for deadliest mushroom: study
Daniel Lawler for Science X. May 16, 2023.
I still recommend not eating random wild mushrooms.
Japanese maid cafes grow less innocent and more revenue hungry, resembling hostess clubs
Remi Morisawa for Automation West. October 12, 2023.
Surprised it took so long.
How Musicians Invented Stand-Up Comedy
Ted Gioia at The Honest Broker. September 24, 2023.
I am glad I finally know who to blame.
No good options for Myanmar’s mortally wounded regime
Anthony Davis for Asia Times. November 15, 2023.
You never want the three rebel groups to join forces.
Inside Vietnam's plans to dent China's rare earths dominance
Francesco Guarascio and Khanh Vu for Reuters. September 25, 2023.
Not by waiting for China to make things easier, I hope.
Flooding in New York City allows sea lion to escape enclosure within Central Park Zoo
Brad Matthews for The Washington Times. September 30, 2023.
"The curious creature ultimately chose to return to her fellow sea lions following her excursion."
Woman's car totaled in her driveway by Amazon driver
Shannon Behnken for News Channel 8 (Tampa). April 27/28, 2023.
Amazon tried to get out of paying until it received a call from the local news station.
Message in a bottle floats thousands of miles to a Texas beach
Ariana Garcia for The Houston Chronicle. April 10, 2023.
A genuine message-in-a-bottle story.
I wonder what the theme will be as we look ahead to the penultimate Thursday of November...
Washington's 1789 Thanksgiving Proclamation
N.A. Ferrell. November 25, 2020.
"Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor—and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me 'to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.'"
Calvin Coolidge’s 1923 Thanksgiving Proclamation
N.A. Ferrell. November 21, 2022.
"Wherefore, I, Calvin Coolidge, President of the United States, do hereby fix and designate Thursday, the twenty-ninth day of November, as Thanksgiving Day, and recommend its general observance throughout the land. It is urged that the people, gathering in their homes and their usual places of worship, give expression to their gratitude for the benefits and blessings that a gracious Providence has bestowed upon them, and seek the guidance of Almighty God, that they may deserve a continuance of His favor."
History of Thanksgiving Proclamations in the Philippines
N.A. Ferrell. November 23, 2022.
Come for the normal Thanksgiving Proclamations. Stay for the weird Marcos (the first President Marcos, not the current President Marcos) era.
When President Coolidge Spared a Raccoon From Thanksgiving Dinner
N.A. Ferrell. November 24, 2021.
While Rebecca was deemed unfit for the dinner table, she was more than fit to be a White House pet.
Fallen Inflatable Thanksgiving Turkey
N.A. Ferrell. November 17, 2022.
You can't keep Thanksgiving down.
“Coffee Fruit Punch” – A Cookbook Abomination
N.A. Ferrell. November 23, 2020.
I defy you to disagree with the headline.
I list our most-read articles from the previous newsletter week (Friday to Saturday) in each edition of The Newsletter Leaf Journal. These statistics come courtesy of Koko Analytics, our local, privacy friendly page-counting solution (see my review). Below, I present the 5 most-visited articles for 2023 newsletter week 46 (November 11-17). Note: All stats are for 2023 only.
All five articles from the Newsletter Week 45 ranking returned in Week 46, with the order shifting behind the repeat first-place finisher. My Norton Safe Search review posted a dominant week, notching the most views of any article since Newsletter Week 32 and easily taking the top spot in the ranking. While I cannot pinpoint a specific reason for Norton's new standard, it is well on pace to secure the top spot in our November ranking and the favorite to take a third consecutive top weekly finish to bring the month to a close.
The top five behind Norton performed within a range of ordinary, but notwithstanding the generally average top five after the top finisher, we had one of our best weeks in terms of views at The New Leaf Journal due largely to our deepest week on record since our August 2022 Hacker News avalanche. Our Google performance returned to early 2023 levels and our peripheral search engine performance remained solid, albeit a tick down from the previous week save for Yandex. At the moment, our top articles are performing below our general 2021/2022 and early 2023 standard, but our overall views are being distributed across more articles.
To watch going forward: My Pokémon stat special article needs to make four of the final six top fives to become the fourth article to score 40 top fives in one year (Tsuki ga Kirei in 2022 and 2023 and my F-Droid app review in 2022). Speaking of my tsuki ga kirei history, it lost its chance at 50 weekly top fives by missing the ranking for the second consecutive week and third overall. Its performance is not dramatically down from recent weeks, but the floor has risen to the point where its diminished numbers do not guarantee weekly placements. I am curious to see if it rebounds as we approach the end of the year.
No news to report beyond reminding readers that we have a slowly growing collection of article collection hubs.
I am testing Open Library as an alternative to Goodreads. You can see my profile here. Open Library is connected to the Internet Archive project but unlike the Internet Archive, it is open source. There are a few points regarding adding books that are not initially intuitive, but I like it so far. In the future, I will probably write more about Open Library and another reading tracker/collection manager that I am trying, LibraryThing (see my LibraryThing profile).
Thank you as always for reading and following The Newsletter Leaf Journal. If you enjoyed the content and do not already follow the newsletter, you can follow us via email or by adding our newsletter's RSS feed to your favorite feed reader (see options). I will also resume syndicating it at some point but I am working out an alternative idea for newsletter syndication that may be superior to using The New Leaf Journal for the task.
I hope all of our American readers have a terrific Thanksgiving this Thursday. If you are reading this from a country that does not observe Thanksgiving on the penultimate Thursday of November, you may as well treat yourself to something nice on Thursday anyway (what's the harm?). I have some on-theme articles planned for the end of November, so I hope you look forward to those and also to Newsletter 162 next Saturday.
Until November 25,
Cura ut valeas.