November 27th to December 3rd, 2016

At Autostraddle, a straight-forward guide towards making and taking effective political action. This is the first in a series about “the fundamentals of fighting for justice,” which I’m quite excited for.

Give the Internet Archive a few bucks to help build a copy of itself based in Canada. You know. Just in case.

JD Davids provides #ActivistBasics for HIV justice. The basic exercise will be helpful for anyone feeling overwhelmed about what to focus on in the coming years.

Autostraddle lists five newsletters that give you specific actions you can take to resist Trump today and everyday. This is very useful for those of us who are anxious and just need to be pointed at something worthy to get going.

This article on desire smuggling has been incredibly helpful this last week. I often have trouble identifying my wants, needs, and desires, so watching for my magical thinking regarding other people is actually a really good way for me to do so.

I have slowly been climbing back towards media—well, media other than Kitchen Nightmares. I saw Jackie with my girlfriend, a noted Natalie Portman fan, on Saturday. I didn’t mean to start off the weekend so politically—I just wanted to watch Natalie Portman’s undoubtedly Oscar-worthy turn as Jackie O. and see a portrait of a strong woman in crisis. And Jackie absolutely delivers, as a historically-minded Jackie valiantly organizes the first shot of her husband’s legacy while struggling and sometimes stumbling under the overwhelming grief of losing her husband and the man who defined her life. Portman’s Jackie is steely, a little brittle (although warm and vivacious in flashback), and often choking back a strangling, passionate heart. When Jackie breaks loose from a survey team at Arlington to find the right spot for Jack’s grave, is she fleeing in heartache or taking control? That balance, along with the balance of the various faces Jackie is aware she makes to the public, is the core of the film.

One shot that made me gasp out loud was a shot of all the Kennedy women neatly seated on a sofa, watching news coverage, nylon-covered knees primly pressed together, Jackie’s legs still covered in Jack’s blood.

Of course, watching Jackie does remind you of the future tenant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue—and that he will not be accompanied by his wife and child.

In less horrifying news, I’ve started watching Adam Ruins Everything based on the strength of this clip from the show, wherein he explains how sex workers settled the American West. I’d always thought that the show would be grating, based on its subway ads, but Conover’s approach—gently but firmly puncturing common misconceptions, sketch-based episodes, and actually pulling in experts or people who can better speak to a situation than he can when appropriate—is really appealing to me. It helps that Conover seems to be doing this from a place of optimism about the power of knowledge rather than nihilism, even when breaking down difficult to affect systems. At the end of a segment about wine, for example, Conover extols his companions to embrace the fact that wine, like all other foods, is completely subjective and drink whatever they like.

It also helps that he dresses well.

2 thoughts on “November 27th to December 3rd, 2016”

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