What Was Cool Weekly (Mar.20-26)
Fly Traps, Tornados, Tree Rings, etc...
Hello there - I hope you are doing well. Spring has officially begun and here are a few things I thought were cool this week…
1. Lady Bug in Peril
My Venus fly trap (named Carlos) is starting to awake from winter hibernation. He was stirred this week by a lady bug traipsing across the traps. Fortunately for the lady bug, Carlos was too weak to seal the deal and close his trap. The lady bug lived on.
Carlos is definitely my most entertaining little plant to watch. I usually try to post any “feedings” to my Instagram stories: @johnstormart
2. Tornado Time
Growing up in the Midwest, I have vivid memories of various Tornados attacks and drills as a young kid at school. Fortunately, I have not been seriously impacted by tornados or dangerous weather even with my last name.
Earlier this week, we had several tornados touch down in Texas just north and south of us. It was odd to hear our local elementary school sirens blaring a warning to take shelter. I was fascinated by the quickly shifting weather outside and experienced what looked like snow coming down in full sunlight. It was definitely odd.
My wife had the boys huddled in the bathtub in bike helmets, where I joined them later. Fortunately, our area was okay but some pretty devastating tornado damage happened in other areas of Texas.
3. “On Being” On Repeat
I am not sure how I stumbled on this but I have been listening to several episodes of the award winning podcast “On Being” with interviewer Krista Tippett.
The goal of “On Being” is to explore big questions of meaning and various facets of the immensity of life - science, art, spirituality, social healing, etc.
I really enjoyed the episode in which she interviewed children’s author and two time Newbury award winner - Kate DcCamillo. I read the “Tale of Despereaux” several years ago by Kate DiCamillo - and really enjoyed it.
This episode is premised on the suggestion of trying to re-connect with your inner 8 year old.
“Each and every adult is a former eight-year-old, wide open with yearning and possibility… unbearably alert to the world’s wonder and its dangers all at once”
I know the idea of an “inner 8 year old” may sound odd. I heard someone explain it this way once - people are like trees. If you look at a tree cut down you will see the rings of the tree’s life in the trunk. Each ring represents a year. People are the same - although we don’t have these visible rings - we do carry the years, the memories, the experiences within us. I have always thought that was kind of a cool way to look at it.
Here is the episode:
Many of Kate DiCamillo’s thoughts resonated with me during the interview. Encouragement to be curious, to wonder and to write it down.
“Life is chaos and art is pattern and order”
Here are my notes while I listened to the episode:
Odds & Ends:
Currently reading: “In Praise of Slowness” by Carl Honore - I am still trying to slow down.
I’m a big fan of the band Khruangbin and really enjoyed this “Song Exploder” episode in which they take apart and talk about their song “So We Won’t Forget.” I don’t know much about the mechanics of music, but I know what I like and I was fascinated to hear their process on the making of their music:
Here’s a duck on a sticky note a former student drew for me… I wonder why they thought I would like it… they were right.
Thanks for checking this out - I hope you have a great week and be on the look out for anything you find interesting and cool.