Hi! Did someone forward this to you? Why not join in and get interesting things by regular email ๐Ÿ˜ƒ
๐Ÿ’ฅ BLAST! logo. Can't see it? Click to view this email in your web browser instead.
Hello once again gorgeous friends, how are you? I mean, how is it that you even came to be the way you are? Do you ever pause to consider that the odds of you coming into being are so fantastically remote, even your darkest moments are of spectacular good fortune? Good, I'm glad. Lots of links this week. โ›“

 Apocalypse! : If events get you down, cast your mind back to better times. Before our data was used against us, and the seabirds filled up with plastic shards. Before frustrated Americans were duped into electing a psychopath, and frustrated Brits were duped by racists into supporting moves to make them even worse off. And before they ruined the Toblerone. Let us dwell just for a moment on a happier time: the heady, halcyon days of 2012...
Aaah, 2012. While a global audience looked on and dancers swirled about, the web's inventor Tim Berners-Lee tweeted a message of openness, inclusivity and spiritual generosity. And yet even with this outpouring of optimism, 15% of people believed the world will end during their lifetime, and 10% thought the end was imminent.

But doom needn't be gloomy. There may be comfort derived from believing you're living through the end of days: better a known short-term end than an unknown long-term one. The ultimate end is certainly coming; the trouble is it's unclear not only when but also how it'll be served. Each era has its own visualisation. In the Cold War era, the nuclear threat rendered the apocalypse as grizzly but sudden. Ever wondered how grizzly? Here's a calculator. The good news is you can dismantle a nuclear missile: the trick is to start early.

The current era's rendering offers two possibilities. Either it's soon and horrible by a confluence of factors (according to scientists of many disciplines), as if we're about to drop several juggling-balls at once. Alternatively (and as preferred by pop culture), it's a slow and horrible life-sentence of low-carbon misery that we hand down to our kids.

On the bright side though, whichever theoretical demise you prefer, we're all left with the luxury of choosing what to do and the extent to which to do it. Every cloud, eh? ๐Ÿค—
๐Ÿ“บ Dave Allen in search of the Great English Eccentric is a delightful, almost straight-faced documentary from 1974, preserved on YouTube. Allen meets a man who lives in a box on wheels, a cowboy vicar and a man who pretends to fly a Lancaster bomber in his garage.

๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ‘ฆ Unsolicited Advice for My Three Sons, In No Particular Order (and also Volume 2) contains: "Failure โ€” whether itโ€™s a failed jump shot, a failed relationship, a bankrupt company, or a scoop of ice cream falling off the cone โ€” is a data point. Aspire to love data the way a father loves his sometimes obstreperous three boys: because of, not in spite of, imperfections."

๐Ÿ•ณ The Dark Saga of Katie Bouman: along with last week's black hole image, Dr Bouman's image was widely circulated as a symbol of female empowerment. This in turn caused an ugly backlash.

โ˜•๏ธ 10 things that happen to your body when you stop drinking coffee: as an experiment I've eased off the coffee this week, and then made the mistake of looking up what effect this might have. Related: Should we drink milk to strengthen bones? For generations, weโ€™ve been told milk helps build strong bones. But does science back this up? ๐Ÿฅ›

๐Ÿ’‘ What a โ€˜Conjugal Visitโ€™ Is Actually Like: They're designed to reduce the chance of reoffending. But as far as the families are concerned, itโ€™s about time.
 Going down fighting : There are a fair few approaches to tackling the apocalypse head-on. If you're obscenely wealthy, you can prepare with a luxury bunker in New Zealand (although some are so fancy I'd be tempted not to wait for a disaster).

Supposing you're not in the top 1% by wealth, fear not: there are still many ways to spent whatever money you have in preparation for combatting your inevitable extinction, with a rucksack full of stuff. If you feel that fighting for survival is the route for you, be sure to give some thought to what to eat should you succeed.

By far the cheapest way to avoid the guilt of handing your ancestors the mother of all hospital passes is to avoid having kids in the first place. This approach has the added benefit of a huge carbon saving, thereby making life fractionally less ghastly for everyone else's children at no extra cost.

There's a drawback, though: this rather feels like doing nothing, and it seems fanciful to believe that inactivity is a better plan than action. So while we can't do much to combat the death of the sun, we've got several millions of years to decide how much of a problem that is. Realistically, some single threats are more pressing than others.

It's possible to take steps to avoid climate disaster, so long as we get on with it. In the words of climate activist and writer Bill McKibben: "Itโ€™s the greatest fight in human history, one whose outcome will reverberate for geologic time, and it has to happen right now." (McKibben is speaking in London soon).

Apathy is the enemy here: the best strategy is for everyone to small actions as if our lives depend upon them. As in Giuseppe de Lampedusa's novel Il Gattopardo: "For everything to stay the same, everything has to change." ๐Ÿ”ฅ
 Finally : People sure do say 'it' a lot. What would happen if someone made a song out of that? Headphones in ๐ŸŽง or, better still, turn it up loud ๐Ÿ”ˆ

Hit the archives or forward this to someone awesome!

You got this because you subscribed to BLAST!

๐Ÿ’ฅBLAST! · c/o relating.to ltd. · 160 City Road · London, EC1V 2NX · United Kingdom. Drop zeh mic.
Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp