Scenes of Ordinary Happiness, Kitchen Convos on Twitter, and a Culture of Advocacy
Let’s begin this weekend with a beautifully produced video vignette. The six-minute film flashes images of gorgeous scenes of folks in their everyday routines paired with a Dinah Washington mash-up and the voice of the Dalai Lama:
“I’m just one human being. Out of six billion human beings, I’m one of them. I believe every human being wants happy life, successful life. Everyone. No matter what sort of color, what nationality, what religious faith, what social status, all want, all have right, to have happy life.”
Following on that idea, I can think of few people in our shared popular culture who handled facing cancer and his own mortality with more grace, and energy, than movie critic Roger Ebert. As Krista (@kristatippett) tweeted:
“Taking a leave of presence.” What a beautiful phrase Roger Ebert left us in his last days.
He was 70 years old.
“You must do all that you can do while you occupy this space during your time. And sometimes I feel that I’m not doing enough to try to inspire another generation of people to find a way to get in the way, to make trouble, good trouble. I just make a little noise.”
John Lewis admitted this to Krista during last week’s show. Well, we want the sitting Congressman and civil rights legend to know that his message is being heard. Kathy Carlson, a professor of English at Franklin College in Indiana wrote:
“This morning, Easter morning, I heard the interview with John Lewis — the perfect way to begin Easter Sunday. Last week, I led my college freshmen in reading and discussing documents related to non-violent resistance, centered in the Civil Rights Movement. John Lewis’s example of love in action is one that we can all follow. (Of course, I’ll share the program with my
“It would be interesting to know what it is men are most afraid of. Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what they fear most.”
If Crime and Punishment doesn’t suit your taste, Roshi Joan Halifax’s offers some insight and counsel on working with fear and uncertainty:
“When you are in a state of deep internal stillness, you see the truth of change, the truth of impermanence that’s constantly in flow moment by moment. So that becomes a kind of insight that liberates you from the futility of the kind of grief that disallows our own humanity to emerge.”
Completely shifting directions, Krista kicked off some chatter about the kitchen this week when she responded to Sheila Dillon (@SheilaDillon), host of BBC Radio 4’s The Food Programme:
I could not cook until I lived in the UK for a couple of years and discovered Jane Grigson. Wish Americans knew her.
To which Ms. Dillon responded:
It is odd — she really means nothing to my US chums. What great American food writers do you think we unfairly ignore?
Krista doesn’t think there’s an equivalent:
I don’t think we have any great tradition of narrative/literary recipes and food writing. All too practical and literal. Alas.
Could this be true, dear readers? Please prove my dear colleague incorrect and send us some suggestions. Please!
“When we watch you, you make us proud to be Egyptian.”
This praise came from one of Madame Ghalia’s callers. Read Moustafa Abdelhalim’s excellent essay about this working-class television chef who has become a celebrity by building national pride with affordable regional recipes that applaud the new post-revolutionary Egyptian cultural identity. We’ve even embedded some video (with English subtitles)!
Krista sent out this thought on the IP waves last week…
We’ve created a culture of advocacy-we know how to fight for identities, passions, issues. A costly righteousness, which I’m questioning.
This observation really resonated with people. How do you think about this?
The same goes for this provocative quotation from a column by Frank Bruni:
“There’s a line between filling a kid with self-esteem and larding a kid with delusions.” Worth reading.