At the intersection of activism and confectionary delight is none other than Ben & Jerry’s. The company has stood up for everything from climate change to same sex marriage to Black lives matter and defunding the police. And in June 2020, the brand took a bold stance against white supremacy, proving that in business, silence is no longer an option.
Ben & Jerry have been consistently amazing with their support for many things from climate change to systematic racism. I do wish more companies would learn from them examples. It can easily dismissed as PR in glance but their consistently is the key.
The continuous ability to be better is something which I see is missing in many places. The status-quo must be challenged and Ben & Jerrys are all about this.
Amazing hearing the story of Martin Luther King’s speeches.
One speechmaker inspired millions with his words, the other utterly destroyed his own multi-million-dollar business with just a few phrases.
Civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr (played by Jeffrey Wright of Westworld, The Hunger Games, and the James Bond films) and jewelry store owner Gerald Ratner offer starkly contrasting stories on when you should stick to the script and when you should take a risk.
I was talking to a friend/colleague recently about presentation styles.
When I first started giving speeches and presentations I would create a script but I quickly dumped that idea as it just didn’t work for me. I also use to write notes but found myself reading the notes out rather than focusing on the audience. Finally I also use to do run-through’s with other people but found myself frustrated or even annoyed that in the run run-through’s that I said one thing but am saying something else while on stage.
I do subscribe to the jazz/improvisation approach with guard rails, which is the slides. Without them I tend to go off in many different directions. Although with some time constraints its all good.
Me and Claire who I haven’t heard from in a very long time got talking about last year. From the covid19 pandemic, to the vaccine, systematic racism and to trypanophobia. It was during that conversation mind the gap was mentioned.
I had never really imagined or thought the images and books medical students might be learning from, may not have people with dark skin. Meaning an unbalance in the treatment of dark skinned people simply because of education.
Simple things like finding veins which are relatively easy to see under white skin can be challenging under black skin (generally). There were other aspects which I hadn’t ever thought about…
A Zimbabwe-born medical student living in London is filling in an important blind spot in the medical community: informing healthcare providers and patients how symptoms for a broad range of conditions appear on darker skin.
It’s the kind of problem that feels shockingly outdated for the 21st century, but as 20-year-old St. George student Malone Mukwende recently told the Washington Post, the lack of teaching about darker skin tones, and how certain symptoms would present differently on nonwhite skin, was obvious by his first class at the University of London school.
“It was clear to me that certain symptoms would not present the same on my own skin,” Mukwende told The Post, referring to conditions like rashes, bruises, and blue lips. He quickly extrapolated that the same would be true of other people sharing similarly dark skin.
Shocking but so glad of the solution, although its worth noting there is things missing from the book where you could help.
Its been quite a year and everybody is looking for a better year in 2021.
- Live in another country for a short while
Regardless of the pandemic, I’m still keen to spend a serious amount of time in Europe. I know we just left Europe (don’t get me started) and its now even harder to do what I had planned last year. Regardless I got to try and apply for the Estonian digital nomad visa.
- Head further a field with the scooter
A follow on from the last lot of resolutions, even with Covid19 and Brexit, I’m holding out hope that I can find a way to either the Netherlands or Ireland. I almost went to the Netherlands over the summer but the rules changed meaning I would need to self isolate for 14 days after coming back.
- Take better care of my skin.
This is a follow on from last year, my sleep, alertness, etc are great but I for decades have neglected my skin. Since I was young, I would use petroleum jelly on my face and hands. I only really noticed the issue with this while shaving. But I was convinced by my barber to stop doing this and use proper face moisturisers. My family were amazed my skin turned out as well as it did we 30+ years of petroleum jelly. So its time for something new and less harsh?
- Step up my gratitudes
My lovely ex-colleague Nicky told me about a book shes been using, called the 6 minute diary. Last time we talked about my gratitudes. So from new years I’ll give it a go. It will likely the most I have handwritten in a long time. Thanks Nicky again and look forward to seeing what hits the paper.
- Host more film nights and dinner parties
This is a repeat of the last year but even with Covid19, I’m going to put this on the list, as I could do much better. Heck I got enough Chocolate to do a tasting night every month right now.
- Spend even more time with the Diabolo
The pandemic has given me so much time with the Diabolo. Its amazing to see how fast I have improved in the community garden. A while back I wanted to learn the Vertex and now I’m getting confidently doing it but got a long way to go before I start throwing genocide vertex’s. Although I feel I can watch a video on youtube and pick it up within a week or two now. However I still don’t get the infinite suicide, it should be easy but it never works for me.
- Send a email out to friends and family once or twice a year
I’m slightly preparing to spend even less time in Facebook and looking at the alternatives to substack and medium. Most likely I will selfhost it now I’m running yuno host on a raspberry pi4. Either Writefreely or something with Activitypub.
- Self host and move to more decentralised/fediverse services.
Its something I’ve been doing for a while but its time for the big push. As I’m spending more time at home, I got more time to learn and now my main services are running on the NAS. The RaspberryPi is a great platform for self-hosting. While thinking about the previous one, I posted something on Mastodon.
Someone suggested this Github project and someone suggested Friendica might have what I need.
- Find an alternative to the pebble watch
My friends have been really good to me, giving up their old pebble smartwatches to me. But as I’m now on my last pebble, its time to move over to something else. I enjoyed not having to pull out my phone to read a message and to even reply directly from the watch. But I can’t buy another one now. I had pinned my hope on the hybrid smartwatches but they don’t seem to have the ability to send a reply. Anyway, no more pebble after this one dies.
- Listen to a Audiobook every month.
Another advantage of being at home is the amount of audiobooks I’m listening to. Right now I’m listening to one every week but 12 is a basic target and should be do able with the sheer amount of podcasts I’ve been listening too. This also fits with Audiable’s monthly subscription.
- Take a more political & strategic view on the status quo
There’s been a number of books and podcasts, which have led me to the fact people around me think things are generally ok. Yes with the pandemic, they changed their minds for this year but I hear again and again – “Next year things will go back to how they were and all will be ok.”
No I’m 99% sure it won’t and frankly how it was, was not good enough. We need to fight harder for a better future for all. Its also clear to me the right has found a formula which is working but its easily broken by taking a active role in our democracy. May this year made this ever so clear to me.
- Finish my dating book
Yes that book is being worked on between myself and Hannah. The latest draft is looking great. Honestly it reads like a real book! I’m now considering writing a epilogue but unfortunately my relationship ended during this year. Meaning a rewrite and rethink how to end it as such.
There are other considerations like photography/artwork, formats, checking for consistency, where to publish, how to publish, etc, etc. Any thoughts do get in touch (like to avoid Amazon if I can and it makes sense)Here is a tiny sneaky paragraph from a draft chapter (Hannah is such a great writer and editor, you should hire her!)
…I studied her face to see what her intention was. Maybe it was a spontaneous comment that didn’t really mean anything. Perhaps she was playing to the cameras that surrounded us?
The longer I looked, the more smug her expression became. She might have been pretty before but that dirty grin said it all. If she was trying to push my buttons she had found them alright. What happened next was not my finest hour.
Maybe the combination of divorce, Mr Tango and the button pushing had something to do with what happened next. It felt like I was thinking it but it came out.
Regardless, I do take responsibility for what happened next…
Bet you are dying to know what happens next right? Hopefully this year you will know.
So that’s the 12 for 2021 (still no real reason why its 12, it just is). Its a tough one because I wanted to include things like visit a new country but I decided its unlikely this coming year. I was also going to add one about getting the Covid19 vaccine/jabs but I just learned one of the ingredients includes pea protein? So it might be a even longer wait for me to get the vaccine.
Have a good new year all!
Although very much around America and part of the UK, there is key issues are there. #Covid19, #Blacklivesmatter, #Brexit, #vote2020, #RuthBaderGinsburg, #trump, #biden, #misinformation, #environment, etc, etc.
Here's the first trailer for 'DEATH TO 2020' – a mockumentary from 'Black Mirror' creator Charlie Booker!
— Looper (@looper) December 21, 2020
Good work and something to laugh at while we head into 2021.
2020 has been one heck of a year for me and pretty much every single person on earth. The Covid19 pandemic effected so many peoples lives from people dying to people having to operate around nationwide lock downs. People I know have had covid19 and a couple people are still suffering with the long covid19. From memory no one I know has died but I’m not certain.
The thing about the pandemic is its like background radiation. Its always there and it affects everything. Even if its small things.
Then in the middle of everything the police in American murdered a bunch of black people and the whole thing was captured. May 2020, was a turning point for many, finally we could talk about systematic racism and people were listening. Not to say they did a lot about it but in some places the light was shone and people finally understood what it means to be an anti-racist.
So with all that how was my year from the Quantified Self data point of view?
- My average sleep duration has increased from 7 hrs 20mins to 7hours 50mins. Average deep sleep was 4.03 hrs now its 4.35hrs.
- This year I started moving away from Gmail, so the numbers make sense. I had 32,601 conversations, have 20718 emails in my inbox and sent 7841 emails this year.
- Have 114,564 photos and 4,269 photos albums in Google photos.
- Tasks wise I have 304 open tasks and completed 3,315 over the year
- Been on all of 6 trips including Manchester, Warrington, Lancaster, London, Alton towers, Blackpool this year.
- According to Trakt, my most played show is Dave and film was Tenet, Most listened to podcast is the Daily Tech News Show.
- I spent 742 hours watching films (61.8hrs a month) and 1221 hours watching TV series (101.8hrs a month) – that is a lot, but understandable with being locked down.
Here’s my review of my new years resolutions from 2019.
- Head further a field with the scooter
Even with Covid19, there was a brief chance to go on holiday to the Netherlands in August. I had planned to take the scooter across from either Hull or Felixstowe. I checked out the pricing got the emergency kit, arranged my stay with a friend in the Netherlands. But then Greater Manchester went into a tier where leaving become problematic. I push on but then suddenly the Netherlands become a country when I could need to isolate for 14 days after returning. At that point I decided its all too much.
Its a shame as I also considered Ireland too but the season had changed and didn’t fancy driving in Ireland in the rain.
- Visit another new country
This never happened for obvious Covid19 reasons. Maybe next year will be better?
- Make some changes to the flat
Lots of changes to the flat, from a new desk, a network attached storage, reconfiguration of some basic things. I still have a number of tasks related to this to go through for 2021.
- Host film nights at mine
This didn’t happen for obvious Covid19 reasons. Although my bubble might break this somewhat.
- Spend less time in the UK / Live in a new country
Yeah Covid19 killed this but who knows what might happen next year
- Find the others and connect them
This has started to happen, but theres more work needed on this front.
- Play a new sport somewhat regularly
Another Covid19 killer, but I did spend a lot of time with the Diabolo.
- Drink more fizzy water
This happened, maybe too much and I had to stop drinking copious amounts of fizzy water late at night. I’m not drinking so much that I needed a subscription but I’m getting through a bottle of gas every 3 weeks?
- Look after myself better
I believe this one happen starting with my focus on my sleep patterns. Being able to make that decision about working later has made a massive difference to the quality of my sleep, even with the background humm of the pandemic.
- Be even more aware of the environment and what I can do to help
This believe it or not had happened, from spending much more time sorting out what I can recycle. Tesco also have been delivering my shopping with bags so been using them for many things for recycling.
- Put my money/resources where my values are, with platforms like Patreon
This happened, I signed up to Pateon as there is a number of podcasts I regularly enjoy and gave them small amounts of hard cash to help support them. I also donated time and some money to other places like anti-racist, feminist, neurodiverse organisations.
- Change my email signature with important information
Done, my signature now includes my pronoun, my user manual and status. I keep thinking about adding my free/busy time but don’t really like the fact google calendar reveals your email address when doing so.
I heard the true story of the Mangrove Nine but to see it play out over a 2 hour TV show is just amazing. I wasn’t sure what to expect but with the great director Steve McQueen, I had a sneaky suspicion it was going to be (8/10) great. Its almost so great to see UK black history on the screen, as its usually displaced by American black history.
Really looking forward to the other episodes.
I was quite taken by this slide.
Theres a lot of parallels with many other things including black lives matter, transrights, disability rights, feminism, etc. All transcends party politics and the endless squabbling; this is a question of human rights and human dignity…
Good to see Emmanuel Acho back at it…
I found this episode of uncomfortable conversations with the police quite a interesting one. Although good, it felt like there was something missing? Maybe there was a lot of outtakes or it was edited down quite a lot. What ever it was, it was intriguing but too short?
Wonder how different it might be with the UK police?
The Black Experience in Graphic Design: 1968 and 2020, has a number of black designers read through a hard copy article written in 1968 to see how much has changed or rather reflect on how little has changed.
As I started it was a hard read as there was a lot I recognise in my experiences as a designer in the earlier days of 2000. Like most of the designers featured, I stay hopefully too However I also listened/read the wired article – Five Years of Tech Diversity Reports—and Little Progress.
So little progressive…
Its coming up to 6 months since George Floyd was murdered by the Minneapolis police. One of the things I am planning is a look at all those pledges to make a change by companies to see if they actually did what they pledged.
Part of my work is to extract the data from this amazing presentation. Put into a form where others can add to it, likely a airtable, mutliple google sheets or github somehow? I think what the original authors did is amazing but it they limited its impact by not separating the data from the format. Not a criticism of course, but I could really help if they provided the data or sources.
If you can help or can point at places which might help a XML type person like me, do shout. If you are interested in joining what happens next, drop me a message.
I started a google sheet, after pretty much manually pulling the data out of the Google Slide. There’s lot of room for adding others. I’ll likely drop the sheet somewhere, so others can add without messing with the existing data. I’m testing the protected cell feature in Google sheets, although I have a copy if it all goes wrong. This gives me the chance to mess with Airtable I guess?
Its been one heck of a summer, from the covid19 pandemic, national lockdowns to the protests for #blacklivesmatter.
Every once in a while I have been putting out a few mixes under the new album/category of locked down and mixing out. The mixes have been good but I felt they each had something missing, so this is the best bits of previous mixes put together into something extra special.
Its the mix I am listening to when I get out with the Diabolo or go for a long walk.
- A new beginning – Marcus Schossow
- Chinook – Markus Schulz pres Dakota
- Opium (Quivver remix) – Jerome Isma-Ae & Alastor
- Open up – Leftfield
- Intruder – Armin Van Buuren vs M.I.K.E
- My Beat (Ambassador extended remix) – Blaze
- Follow me (Jerome Isma-Ae Extended remix) – Jam Spoon
- Floyd (Extended mix) – Jerome Isma-Ae & Alastor
- Opulence – Simon Patterson
- Numb the pain – Will Atkinson
- Seven Cities (V-One’s living in the cities mix) – Solarstone
- Halcyon – Andy Moor
- Tears (Protoculture remix) – Dakota
- Outlaw (Extended mix) – Fatum
- Amino Acids – Tau-Rine
- Freedom (Extended mix) – ARTY v Muvy
- Indigo – 4×4
If you remember the Christian and Amy Cooper incident in Central Park? It was the exact same day as when George Floyd was murdered in Minneapolis by the police. I was so badly shaken by this incident, as it touched a deep nerve.
Amy apologised for whats its worth, but Christian Cooper took a lot from the experience and went one further.
Christian Cooper, the Central Park bird-watcher who was racially profiled by a white woman, has created a new graphic novel for DC Comics about racial injustice influenced by his own experience.
Amazing and so very powerful I mean his cool calm handling of the incident was just incredible, then later seeing him accept his apology was powerful and now this?
I’ll be seeking out a copy just to have and share with others.