I have a minor hobby replying to climate skeptics in the letters page of our local paper. I'm trying to work out the best language to respond, the best way to frame things. I'm also collecting examples of businesses talking about climate. Jessica DeFino has gone a brilliant step further and created a poem out of the Earth Day spam she got from the beauty industry. It's magnificent, here's an excerpt:
Happy Friday and happy Earth Day!
Are you working on any product round-ups?
Scientists warn that humanity has only a handful of years left to prevent irreversible and catastrophic damage from climate change and
EARTH DAY BEAUTY
might be the answer to help drought-stricken countries.
There is no better time to swap out the lip balm you’re currently using
Unearth the Beauty Within
lipsticks with eco-friendly tubes.
Biden has found fresh ways to boost domestic fossil fuel production by loosening some environmental restrictions
environmental platform was co-founded by Cara Delevingne
YSL Beauty has joined the ranks
Olivia Williams did the Q&A in The Guardian yesterday. When asked what she'd like to leave her children she said "No clutter!"
(On that note we've been trying to reduce the 1000s of books we have at home. The things we bought in a light night paperbacking frenzy at Powell's 20 years ago, old football bios from Sportspages on Charing Cross Road, the 70s pulp bought from under Waterloo bridge on a Sunday morning in the 90s. Every Margery Allingham I ever see. Looking back now I've realised that the browsing, shopping and choosing was very often more important than the actual book. So, we're getting rid. Many of these have gone to Oxfam but you lot might like some of them, so, if you visit our shop you can get them, very cheap, sometimes free. You just have to pay the postage. Follow for new stock.)
Apparently James Joyce invented the word 'lifebrightener' in Ulysses. A useful word. "It's a lifebrightener, sure. The hottest stuff ever was. It's the whole pie with jam in." Which reminds me, I learned this week that Cornish pasties used to have both sweet and savoury baked in, with a crusty wall between them. A lifebrightener.
This interview with Ocean Vuong is great, especially this bit:
"Vuong is unafraid of moral seriousness (the adjective “earnest” crops up often in reviews). This sincerity is perhaps one reason why he appeals so strongly to a youthful audience. “Young people want to be spoken to directly. They want to speak to each other directly,” he says of the recent poetry revival. “When we are in trouble collectively we don’t want context and plot. A poem makes the most sense because there is no fluff. It goes right in and gets to what we are all feeling. I think young people especially are so tired of these contexts and these frames.
He has no time for the irony or cynicism that have become bywords for contemporary American fiction. He doesn’t hang out with other writers, because it inevitably leads to gossip “and that withers my soul”. For him this “Brooklyn fear of feeling” is a limitation of white masculinity. “You can only say ‘this sucks’ for so long, before it becomes lazy,” he says. “A lot of men have been saying that for a long time. OK, we get it. It sucks. So now what?”
This is a fantastic Q&A with Professor Rebecca Monteleone about plain language translation and making your writing more accessible.
"I come from a disability studies background and if the goal of the news media is to inform, then you have to think about who is in your “public.” And if you’re only writing for a certain audience with a certain reading level or reading familiarity, then you’re not really writing for the whole public."
(via Alex Mitchell)
I've put some tickets on sale for Interesting, the sort-of-conference I sort-of-organise. There will be more details on that eventually but if you'd like to grab yourself a ticket based on absolutely no information about who's speaking and why then you're my sort of person and please crack on.
Have a good May