A week in review, 2020-W20


  1. We are a strange loop (2020-05-11).
  2. A model of the garden (2020-05-16).


  1. Gregory Stephenson, Before and After Desolation: Two Sojourns by Jack Kerouac at the Hotel Stevens, Empty Mirror (2019-05-10). In a similar fashion, Kerouac’s separate stays at the Hotel Stevens can be seen to reflect his inner division: his sincere pursuit of spiritual growth in opposition to the powerful attraction of the pleasures of the senses. This conflict – between the spirit and the flesh – is central not only to Kerouac’s life and writing but is, of course, a perennial theme in literature and, indeed, an abiding aspect of the human condition. The Desolation episode, flanked on either side by sojourns at the Hotel Stevens, is pivotal in The Duluoz Legend, as it also proved to be in the life of the author. Ahead for the author-narrator lay other rooms, further nights, days and distances, further ordeals and epiphanies.
  2. Ryan Hockensmith, 150,000 worthless baseball cards in the time of coronavirus, ESPN (2020-05-07). But I feel 10% less scared in my basement, with my cards. I don't really need them anymore. I don't even dig into them. I don't go through the many boxes, still organized alphabetically in protective plastic sleeves, or open up any of the packs I still have. I just stare at them. Some people have bubbling brooks or bird noises from the backyard that bring them calm and serenity. Me? I have 500 Pedro Guerrero cards that aren't worth the plastic cases they're housed in.
  3. Penelope Trunk, This is a great time to make a career change, Penelope Trunk Careers (2020-04-25). Now that schools are all online, kids have no patience for bad teaching. Compete with professors by taking their online course material and making it good. They don’t own the course info for Biology 101 and kids want to learn it from a YouTuber. Use John Green’s channel as an example: Content is a commodity, delivery is the differentiator.
  4. Jonah Raskin, 'Six at the Six' at 50 -- Return of S.F.'s poetic beat, San Francisco Chronicle (2005-09-30). Still, it's no wonder that the event has taken on mythical reverberations, and that in the Bay Area -- which seems to experience a poetry renaissance every 15 minutes -- all sorts of poets trace their lineage to the Six Gallery. The 50th anniversary celebrations in and around San Francisco over the next week will only add to the myth. Of course, poets need myths as much if not more than anyone else. I know I do. After years of reading and rereading the work that was performed at the Six, I've sometimes allowed myself to feel that I was there, that I saw and heard. Perhaps you've had that same strange feeling, too, no matter what coast you happen to live on, or what city you call home.
  5. Doug Adler, How a long-gone Apollo rocket returned to Earth, Astronomy (2020-05-11). Many people find the notion of discovering an intact piece of Apollo-era hardware appealing, and these feelings are amplified by the large size of the Apollo S-IVB. “Flown Apollo hardware will always be significant,” says Teitel. “We've been to the Moon nine times and most of the hardware that enabled those missions was destroyed — the Saturn V stages crashed into the ocean or were smashed into the Moon, most of the lunar module ascent stages were smashed into the Moon, and the service modules didn't return. That leaves nine command modules, all of which are on display in museums. Flown hardware has an allure simulators and non-flown items just don't have.”


  1. 477: The Immediacy Filter, Back to Work (2020-05-12). (notes) [23:08] I think there are ought to be a distinction between liking something, or hating something, as against liking or hating knowing that the thing's coming, preparing for that thing. I like doing things, I don't like having things to do.


How to Establish a Level-Grade Line for Landscaping, This Old House (2014-09-01).



There might be additional links that didn't make the cut at notes.kirkkittell.com

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