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May 15th, 2019 - The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
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This title caught my eye: Philip Roth on Mortality: “It’s a Bad Contract, and We All Have to Sign It”

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Everyone needs contact comfort sometimes. Not everyone has ample opportunities for this in facetime. So here is a chance for a cuddle party in cyberspace. Virtual cuddling can help people feel better.

We have a
cuddle room that comes with fort cushions, fort frames, sheets for draping, and a weighted blanket. A nest full of colorful egg pillows sits in one corner. There is a basket of grooming brushes, hairbrushes, and styling combs. A bin holds textured pillows. There is a big basket of craft supplies along with art markers, coloring pages, and blank paper. The kitchen has a popcorn machine. Labels are available to mark dietary needs, recipe ingredients, and level of spiciness. Here is the bathroom, open to everyone. There is a lawn tent and an outdoor hot tub. Bathers should post a sign for nude or clothed activity. Come snuggle up!

In the interest of promoting the concept of introvert parties, we've decided to start adding more communal features. You know how some folks just like to sit around and read together? You can do that here by sharing a link to an online story. I'm rereading "Those Who Walk Away from Omelas." Because someone needs to take a torch to that city
.

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Climate change sheds disturbing light on Drake's equation.

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This article asks, "When, Exactly, Do Children Start Thinking They Hate Poetry?"

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Today is cloudy and warm.

Round One, we looked at things in the prairie garden and decided how to handle them. 

I also fed the birds.  There was a red-winged blackbird in the forest garden today.  :D  They're smaller than grackles, and the grackles chased him away, but it was pretty to watch him fly.  

My celandine poppy is blooming in the forest garden.

Round Two, I planted wildflowers in part of the prairie garden that has been mowed. 

EDIT 5/15/19: Round Three, I finished planting wildflowers in the section of prairie garden I was working on.  I still need to throw down fertilizer there, and there are other places I want to plant seeds.

EDIT 5/15/19: Round Four, I scattered fertilizer over the area where I planted the flower seeds, and some  other places.  Then I pulled weeds around the east part of the forest garden.  As it is getting dark, I am done for the night.

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Here's a brilliant essay against the overuse of preventative care. It's a great idea -- as long as the patient is the decider. This is often not the case. Doctors routinely bully, blackmail, and outright force people to do things against their will. The first question I ask when I notice an issue is: How much damage would I have to take after asking a professional about this, before they agreed to do anything that even MIGHT be useful? Often it's more than I'm willing or able to tolerate.

However, I am really happy to see someone else noticing that there are medical conditions which kill quickly and cleanly, and these are just fine ways to die. I once had a doctor try to scare me with heart disease as a "silent killer." I said, "Okay, silent implies little or no warning. If that happened, I might drop dead suddenly, or get sick and die very quickly." "Yes." "What's not to like?" *doctor dropped brain* "I mean, that's an easy death. As opposed to things like cancer, which you can't fix and are horrible to die from slowly. You're making people avoid a good death to run them into a very bad one. That is the opposite of help." I think I dented him a bit. You have to consider the quality of life and the quality of death -- not just pleasing some authority or making money for people who hurt you.

It's no accident that the Gift of Númenor was the ability to choose one's time of death. Talk about an awesome superpower.

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