Things I Learned This Week: Of Black Panthers and Reading Books Before Bed

Here are some of the most interesting things I came across this week:

  • I loved listening to this episode of On Being where Krista Tippet interviews Maria Popova from Brainpickings. Through dedication to her blog/website/inventory of profound wisdom through the ages, she has made it her job to READ. How wonderful? Instead of merely reviewing other people’s work, however, she writes down her own thoughts about what she reads and then finds intertextual connections with other profound writing. Almost like digital marginalia. She’s only a year older than I am but as wise as a sage living on a Tibetan mountaintop. Life goals for sure.


  • Settlements on the Russian archipelago of Novaya Zemlya have been experiencing an unprecedented invasion of polar bears since December last year. Gathering in garbage dumps, attempting to enter homes and even appearing on school grounds, these bears are obviously ravenous and in search of an easy meal. While I’m sure it must be terrifying for the human residents, it is – of course – a most vivid illustration of the devastating effects of climate change. “But as Arctic ice thins, an occurrence linked to the acceleration of climate change, the animals move ashore, ravenous.” Read more in the Washington Post.


  • Wildlife photographer Will Burrard-Lucas recently managed to capture a black leopard on camera in Kenya. With sightings recorded every so often in the wild regions of East Africa, these beautiful specimens aren’t as rare as you might think. What makes Burrard-Lucas’ captures so noteworthy, however, is their clarity and quality. They truly are spectacular. Take a look.


  • This one’s for the ladies: Your period could have everything to do with your productivity. Read more here.


  • I have a lot of unread books on my shelf and decided that this will be the year I work my way through them. In order to do this, I’ve set out a little schedule for myself of one fiction and one non-fiction per month. Two books every four weeks is quite a challenge, but totally manageable if you make a few simple time management adjustments. Plus, I recently found out that just 6 minutes of reading before bed can reduce stress by a whopping 68%. Read more about it here.


  • The Brooklyn Museum in New York is currently hosting an exhibition called Frida Kahlo: Appearances Can Be Deceiving. Rather than her artworks, the exhibition is a collection of her personal artefacts, which range from noteworthy examples of Kahlo’s Tehuana clothing, contemporary and pre-Colonial jewellery, and some of the many hand-painted corsets and prosthetics used by the artist during her lifetime. All of which had been stored in Casa Azul, the longtime Mexico City home of Kahlo and Diego Rivera. How I would love to browse the collection, marvel at those magnificent outfits and admire her extensive archive of photographic portraiture. Her also an interesting New York Times review of the exhibition.


Featured image: Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

One Comment

  • Lisel

    I’ll be the first to cheer you on in your endeavour to tick off two books a month! Somehow I know that goal is too ambitious for me, but I am nevertheless inspired to take on a more rhythmic reading routine myself: not going to divulge the starting height of my bar… but any effort is better than none, right?

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