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Little Big Things by Cat's Cafe

"Little Big Things" by Cat's Cafe

Not a long one this month. The holidays are upon us, but it doesn’t exactly feel like it to me. It’s a strange time to be sure.

The Beirut Port Explosion by Forensic Architecture

An incredible look into the Beirut port explosion using publicly available data. Forensic Architecture constructed complex 3D models using various video sources of the explosion. I was especially impressed by the recreation of the interior of the warehouse, using smoke trails and their relative location to paint a picture without knowing exactly what it looks like inside. Highly recommend watching this video and their others (check out the breakdown of Black Lives Matter police brutality). The amount of effort they put into these is truly incredible, and the results are — for lack of a better word — amazing.

A Star Trek actor tries to one-up his co-star on his return to Hollywood

Brent Spiner is truly a gem. I had the chance to finally sit down and watch the entirety of Star Trek: The Next Generation, and without a doubt my favorite character was Data (portrayed by Spiner). The episode that stuck out is “Data’s Day”, which follows what turns out to be a not-so typical day for Data.

It’s fun to see Spiner poking fun at an exaggerated version of himself.

Decolonize your reading habits

I know I am guilty of this. I am going to do better and ensure that my fiction is not made up only of white authors. I shouldn’t be looking to people of color solely on the topic of education or issues.

It’s problematic when you turn to writers of color when you want to be educated, but white writers the rest of the time. Instead, we should also be reaching for authors of color when we want a lighthearted, fluffy book. When we want to read something to decompress from our months of election anxiety. When we want to travel to a different world. We shouldn’t have our “race/racism bookshelf”, crammed with writers of color, and have every other shelf filled with white writers.

Listening

December marks the last of Bandcamp Fridays (according to their schedule anyway). I’m hoping Bandcamp keeps it going as a scheduled event of some kind. For the Spotify users out there, Hype Machine has a new program called Merch Table. Plug in a playlist and it will tell you of any artists on Bandcamp that you can purchase from.

I ended up picking up a few things:

I’m on a real shoegaze kick lately. I’ve been consulting a guide I found on reddit for new stuff. I don’t remember how I found Nothing before — I think it was on another shoegaze list, maybe from Pitchfork? — but their song ACD (Abcessive Compulsive Disorder) is peak shoegaze for me. It really stuck out and hasn’t left me. The Great Dismal seems to follow that trend. I’ve only just started listening and can’t wait to dive in more.

No Joy are one of my shoegaze staples. I had the pleasure of seeing them a few years ago at some hole-in-the-wall bar. Their set was tragically short (one of the band members quipped to my pal it was “short ‘n’ sweet”), but for the moments we did get were absolute bliss.

Drab Majesty strike that perfect 80s vibe. They capture the feel and sound of that decade so well, but still strike me as modern.

That’s all for this month. Don’t forget about your holiday shopping! We managed to get ours done in one day. Don’t do what I tend to do and leave it until its too late. Stay safe out there friends. ✌️