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Why China Shouldn’t Exorcise Its Ghost Stories https://www.sixthtone.com/news/1003133/why-china-shouldnt-exorcise-its-ghost-stories

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"To many, reading ghost stories may seem like nothing more than a chilling way to while away an evening. But the more of them I’ve read, the more I’ve come to appreciate their literary value. These heart-pounding accounts of otherworldly apparitions also contain important reflections on the human condition. At a time when tales of demons, specters, and the supernatural are being exorcised from China’s mainstream media, the country’s classical ghost stories should demonstrate that these ghouls still have plenty to teach us."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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"Like Scrooge in “A Christmas Carol,” the phantasmagoric journeys we embark upon with ghosts can inform us about our own reality. What, we readers must ask, are the apparitions we meet trying to tell us? Is “The Painted Skin” truly just about a terrifying shape-shifter? Or, underneath her morphing skin, can we hear the howls of an enraged, perhaps long-ignored woman, venting her pent-up anger on anyone in sight? Is “Xiucai Guo” a simple lark about a friendly spirit trying to help an ungrateful writer gain literary acclaim? Or is it a clever treatise on academic honesty and integrity? These poltergeists have plenty to say, if we’re willing to listen."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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"Rather than banishing these spooky spirits from the culture, we ought to be paying more attention to them. As “Strange Stories From a Chinese Studio” demonstrates, our own shadows are often far more demonic than any otherworldly creature could ever be. These tales bring us face-to-face with ghosts and ask us to look past their translucent skin to the human souls lurking within. They endure not just for their esteemed place in China’s literary tradition, but because they are a bridge back to ourselves, to our own fears, and to what we see when we look in the mirror. China’s ghost stories reveal the dark places our minds go when the lights turn out. And no one who encounters these specters — whether the hero, the villain, or the reader — can walk away unchanged."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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» posted to JustDuckie and positive

107-year-old mom hands candy to 84-year-old daughter, hearts melt across China https://shanghai.ist/2019/11/19/107-year-old-mom-hands-candy-to-84-year-old-daughter-hearts-melt-across-china/

Comment

"No matter how old you get, you'll always be your parents' kid"

 ‎· JustDuckie 1
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"The short clip shows a 107-year-old woman — with a badass cane — from the Henan county of Minquan handing a piece of candy over to her 84-year-old daughter who gives a wide smile to the camera. The man behind the camera was a neighbor, surnamed Yang, who says that he took the mom to a wedding banquet that day where she swiped some sweets to bring home for her daughter."

 ‎· JustDuckie 1
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Chinese Roast Duck, but Make It Turkey https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/18/dining/chinese-barbecue-turkey-thanksgiving.html

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"In Cantonese barbecue shops, Asian supermarkets and Chinese restaurants across the United States, there is one day of the year when roast duck, soy-sauce chicken, char siu and crispy roast pork may be cast aside for plump turkeys. Available from chains like 99 Ranch Market and mom-and-pop shops alike, and often with sticky rice, steamed buns and hoisin-based sauces on the side, these Chinese barbecue-style turkeys provide an inroad to Thanksgiving for many Chinese-Americans. And customers of all backgrounds are embracing the American-born innovation."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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Dancers & Dogs Teamed Up With a Local Animal Shelter for the Second Annual "Muttcracker" https://www.pointemagazine.com/dancers-and-dogs-muttcracker-2641344231.html

Comment

"Kelly Pratt and Ian Kreidich, the St. Louis–based husband-and-wife team behind the popular photography project, have collaborated with Saint Louis Ballet and Stray Rescue of St. Louis for the second year in a row for what they've termed "Muttcracker." "Since the beginning of Dancers & Dogs, people have really wanted us to incorporate dogs that are up for adoption," says Pratt. "We have a really strong relationship with Saint Louis Ballet, so we asked if they'd be comfortable wearing Nutcracker costumes to help get these dogs adopted in a new, fun and interesting way." Not only was this project the perfect way for Saint Louis Ballet to promote its Nutcracker, which runs November 29-December 23, but it was a great fit for Stray Rescue as well. As the largest no-kill organization in the greater St. Louis area, it's focused on saving pets that have been abused and neglected. "They were really excited about showing their dogs in a positive way," says Pratt."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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Texas family told to take down snowman because too early for Christmas decorations https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/texas-family-told-take-down-snowman-because-too-early-christmas-n1082106

Comment

"Simonis and her husband, Nick, told NBC News that she is pregnant and expecting a baby Dec. 25. They put up their Christmas decorations a little earlier than usual in case the baby arrives early and because they wanted their two sons, ages 7 and 3, to enjoy the display. “I’m pregnant. And it took us forever to put them up," she said, adding that they won't take down any of the decorations. "If anything, we’re adding more stuff.”"

 ‎· JustDuckie
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HOA: 3 words horror story.

 ‎· fsniper
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LOL

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His 22-Pound Cat Was Too Fat to Fly. So He Called In an Understudy. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/13/world/europe/fat-cat-aeroflot.html

Comment

"When airline employees told Mr. Galin that his 22-pound cat, Viktor, was simply too heavy to fly in the passenger cabin on a flight to Vladivostok, in eastern Russia, he devised a plan to ensure his kitty did not wind up in the cargo hold. Mr. Galin said in a post on Facebook that he delayed his flight to the next day and used air miles to secure a business class seat for himself and Viktor. After asking friends for help, he then sourced a 15-pound feline called Fibi, describing her as an “understudy cat.” When he presented the slimmer pet at check-in, she came under the airline’s limit of eight kilograms, or about 17 pounds, for animals flying in the passenger cabin. Mr. Galin and Fibi were approved for takeoff. But unknown to Aeroflot and its staff, Mr. Galin swapped Fibi for his real pet, Viktor, before boarding the plane."

 ‎· JustDuckie 2
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Lotta kitty shenanigans in the news today.

 ‎· JustDuckie 2
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» posted to JustDuckie and nature

Hero snow leopard mother with four cubs pictured in Mongolia https://siberiantimes.com/other/others/news/hero-snow-leopard-mother-with-four-cubs-pictured-in-mongolia/

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*love*

 ‎· Galadriel 1
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The closeup one is amazing!

 ‎·  4.jpg ‎· JustDuckie 1
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RT @jessicamryce: “Hey mom, roll your windows up next time #Popcornkittys #Tornado @TheEllenShow https://t.co/MUVJNSBNpFhttps://twitter.com/jessicamryce/status/1193835899366211585

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Houston shelter cat 'Quilty' goes viral after repeatedly letting his cat comrades loose https://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Houston-shelter-cat-Quilty-goes-viral-after-14811265.php

Comment

""Quilty will not be contained. And he has no shame," the shelter wrote in the light-hearted post. "Quilty loves to let cats out of the senior room. Repeatedly. Several times a day." The photos of Quilty ruminating in the lobby he was "banished" to after being caught erupted on Twitter, reaching more than 135,000 people. Despite his seemingly bad behavior, the criminal cat has caught the hearts of people across the world."

 ‎· JustDuckie 1
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Finnsie once managed to Houdini out of her carrier at the vet's. She was just like "ok I splore nao" and the vet techs were all WAIT JUST A MINUTE THERE

 ‎· LibSkrat 2
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Sean Spicer Eliminated From ‘Dancing With the Stars’ https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/12/arts/television/sean-spicer-dancing-with-the-stars.html

Comment

"Finally, on Monday, not even President Trump’s support could save Mr. Spicer, and the president deleted a tweet that had asked TV voters to stave off the inevitable: The former White House press secretary was eliminated from the reality show, ending what somehow counts as a chapter in American politics. “I’ve loved being on this show, thank you for making me part of it,” Mr. Spicer said after being eliminated. "

 ‎· JustDuckie
Comment

"He clearly had a lot of fans, as evidenced by his remaining on the show into the final six contestants. But from the day he was announced as a contestant in August to his elimination on Monday, Mr. Spicer’s presence on the show grated on two groups of viewers: Those unforgiving of his stint as a White House spokesman, and those who like to watch good dancing."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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THERE IS A GOD

 ‎· JustDuckie 3
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The Instant Pot Understands The History Of Women's Labor In The Kitchen https://www.bustle.com/p/the-instant-pot-understands-the-history-of-womens-labor-in-the-kitchen-19276122

Comment

"The real value of this machine, in my view, is not the multiplicity of cooking techniques that it offers but the fact that it enables its users to produce a home-cooked meal at all on days when that task seems insurmountable. My kitchen has seen many devices come and go. I have bought more gadgets than I care to remember that promised to make me a better cook, a faster cook, a healthier cook. I own other devices — the microwave being the most obvious — that assume I don’t want to touch or handle food at all. The Instant Pot, by contrast, seems to understand I do want to eat and serve home-cooked food, but it also tactfully relieves me of most of the stirring and switches itself to "keep warm" mode without being asked to save me from burning dinner. It is that rare thing: a labor-saving device that factors in what a cook needs and feels."

 ‎· JustDuckie 4
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Amazing for anything with beans

 ‎· mehlib 2
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List: Jokes That Everyone On The Mayflower Are Getting Sick Of https://www.mcsweeneys.net/articles/jokes-that-everyone-on-the-mayflower-are-getting-sick-of

Comment

"IN THE NAME OF GOD, AMEN. We, the crew and passengers of The Mayflower, Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, do make it known that upon this ship, it will hereby no longer be tolerated to utter the following jokes and japes. ‘Tis not intended to shame any singular individual, though a few perhaps bear more guilt in repeating these jokes than most."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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Young Texas Republicans Are Having An Identity Crisis https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/nidhiprakash/texas-republicans-2020

Comment

"Republicans in Texas are facing an identity crisis, revealed in nearly two dozen conversations with BuzzFeed News in recent weeks. With a new generation rising up in Texas, the party is struggling to decide what it should look like in the years to come — torn between embracing Trump as closely as possible and adapting to broaden the party’s appeal to young and Latinx people. Latinos in Texas are projected to overtake white Texans as the largest population group by 2022, according to the Texas state demographer, and other communities of color, too, continue to grow in the state. The significant upswing in support for O’Rourke compared to previous Democratic statewide candidates came primarily from suburban voters, particularly in the fast-growing and diversifying Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio suburbs — areas that have traditionally leaned Republican."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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"And even though Trump won a majority of Texas’s vote in 2016 and beat Hillary Clinton by nine points, Trump is unpopular in the state. A Quinnipiac poll in September showed 45% of registered voters in Texas approved of Trump with 50% disapproving. And 48% of Texas voters said they would definitely not vote for Trump in 2020, compared to just 35% who said they definitely would."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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No, Sean Spicer Really Can’t Dance https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/04/arts/dance/sean-spicer-dancing-with-the-stars.html

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The NYT dance critic reviews Sean Spicer's performances.

 ‎· JustDuckie
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She's right about the Paso Doble: https://youtu.be/NIIxTWCMGv4. Holy shit that was bad.

 ‎· JustDuckie 1
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Catapult | Cooking, For Men: How Bobby Flay and Competitive Cooking Reinforce Hypermasculinity https://catapult-prod.herokuapp.com/stories/cooking-for-men-how-bobby-flay-and-competitive-cooking-reinforce-hypermasculinity-column-rax-king

Comment

"Now, I’m neither a professional chef nor an especially proficient home cook, but I do cook, sometimes for fun. What I enjoy about cooking when I enjoy it is the gentleness of it. I can dice an onion as ploddingly as I like; I can stand over a burbling pan and inhale deeply of thyme; I can drive my fist into a freshly risen ball of bread dough and feel the bubbles krrszh themselves flat. Far less enjoyable are the meals I prepare because I have to, and as any food lover will tell you, those meals taste worse. Chefs often recommend that meals be “cooked with love,” which sounds like mystical foolishness—except it might be true. Any meal I cook in an unloving hurry tastes like stress and adrenaline. Meats are less tender and vegetables less bright because the clock, not the food, is the focus of these meals. The worst thing I can do for food is cook it after work when I’m exhausted, and yet I do it regularly, because I don’t often have time to treat food with the tenderness it deserves. But if a professional chef cooks a meal on a time crunch, for no reason but to entertain an audience, is that meal cooked with any more love than those resentful messes I routinely produce in my kitchen?"

 ‎· JustDuckie
Comment

"A Beat Bobby Flay fan might argue that what I’m doing is not artistry. But it is. It’s the artistry of generations of moms and grandmas who had to cram beauty into tight spaces throughout the day. It’s the artistry of poor women who were left with what used to be the toughest, cheapest cuts of meat after the top chefs had snagged all the nice ones (and then, of course, chefs got wind of these magnificent peasant braises and prettied them up for wealthy audiences, and now brisket and short ribs aren’t cheap cuts of meat anymore). But what this food lacks in razzle-dazzle, it makes up for in deliciousness, in the truest good that belongs to food alone more than any other way that food can be good. I defy any food lover to wedge a fork into the tender threads of a finished brisket and say a word against the “women’s work” that is home cooking. What’s more beautiful than turning the impossibly rigid edifice of muscle that is a cow’s chest into dinner?"

 ‎· JustDuckie
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"For all that people mock cooking bloggers’ tendency towards long-windedness in the backstory sections of their recipes, I genuinely believe we mock this meme out of love. We enjoy hearing that this cooking blogger proposed to her husband over these mashed potatoes and, if we don’t, we can scroll past those paragraphs to the ingredient list (though I personally track my favorite bloggers’ lives from post to post like an auntie watching her soaps). Bobby Flay’s recipes, though, are sparse. He’s all business: ingredients list, steps, fin. He may not be doing so consciously, but he’s drawing a line between himself and the unprofessional mommy bloggers of the world, who ruin perfectly good tacos with their stories."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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Opinion | A Louisiana DA will let you out of your community service obligation — if you donate to his nonprofit https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/11/01/louisiana-da-will-let-you-out-your-community-service-obligation-if-you-donate-his-nonprofit/?arc404=true

Comment

"For the first several years, participants were told to donate the gift cards and money orders to the DA’s office. But in October 2015, DeRosier set up a nonprofit foundation, the District Attorney’s Community Assistance Foundation (DACAF), to collect and distribute the gift cards and money orders. The nonprofit is run out of the DA’s office, and staff members, including DeRosier’s secretary, often do foundation work while on public time. DeRosier himself confirmed these particular details in a phone call. Because the gift cards weren’t logged or tracked at all until the nonprofit was established in late 2015, it’s impossible to say exactly how much money the office generated through the program, but according to recent tax receipts from the nonprofit and former staff members who agreed to be interviewed, the figure is at least several hundred thousand dollars."

 ‎· JustDuckie
Comment

"In Louisiana, district attorney’s offices are required to undergo an annual public audit of their finances. The public audits of DeRosier’s office never mention the gift card program, nor is there any line item for gift-card revenue. The firm that had performed the public audit of DeRosier’s office each year of his tenure as DA also has significant conflicts of interest: The head of the firm was once DeRosier’s campaign treasurer and has donated tens of thousands of dollars to DeRosier’s campaign. The firm has also been paid tens of thousands of dollars by DeRosier’s campaign for accounting services."

 ‎· JustDuckie
Comment

"When I asked whether I could see the “audits” the foundation paid Langley’s firm to conduct, DeRosier suggested that he had paid Langley’s firm thousands of dollars for an audit that produced no written document. “I don’t know if they furnished us with a long form audit, or whether they just said you have X amount of dollars in gift cards,” he said. “I don’t know to what extent that it is in writing.” Deeley says that as far as she knows, there’s no such thing as a verbal or oral audit. “I have never, ever heard of that. Not in all of my years in this field. To pay a CPA to conduct an audit but then to ask for no written record of that audit — well, it’s incredibly strange. Really strange. It’s just weird.”"

 ‎· JustDuckie
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*snerk*

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Dancing Past 60: ‘I Actually Forget That I Am Aging’ https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/01/arts/dance/old-age-dance-community.html

Comment

"Behind a partition are women, bedecked in sequins, gliding across a checkered floor to “Dancing Queen.” This is the KCS Senior Dance Team, a group made up of spry and glamorous women in their 60s, 70s and 80s. They can dance, they can jive and, yes, they are having the time of their lives. “We use famous music because then everyone knows and it’s easy to feel it,” Kyung Ok Lee, who bashfully referred to herself as the group’s leader, said. “We have some Korean traditional music, American music and K-pop. The music is healing.”"

 ‎· JustDuckie
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'Old people dancing' is probably my favorite news trope. <3

 ‎· JustDuckie
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The Crack-Up https://therumpus.net/2019/10/the-crack-up/

Comment

"I was drunk with tired, wobbling for a straight line like a roadside inebriant. By the fireplace, her head inches from the hard mantle, my gut pitched. I felt her breath through the top of her head and palmed it like a too-ripe peach. Near the top of the stairs, I imagined her falling and held her hard against my shoulder. My thumb rubbed across her downy, still-forming head, over the lip of each fontanel, and I thought of the fault lines that run beneath Alaska, of how prone to rupture the world, and we, could be. If my body moved away from hers—if she was not nested in my arm, if she could not feel the rise and fall of my breath—she cried. So when she lulled and began to circle to sleep, we curled up on the floor—where there were no blankets or soft mattresses to block her breathing—and once she was quiet, my body hummed. My mind was wired. If I slept, I’d slump over her. If I slept, she’d choke on spit up. If I slept… All night, I stayed awake."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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"My husband and I read books about highly sensitive infants—a term her pediatrician bandied around—and bought a fancier white noise machine and stiffer swaddle blankets. We learned to hold her head in our hands and jiggle gently. We rocked her softly, as if rolling two dice, banking on a big win. All this was meant to simulate what she’d felt in the womb—the staticky whoosh of life in water. All this was meant to convince her that this new place, with its barking dogs and breezes and mosquitoes, was navigable. So we swaddled and swung and shushed and tried."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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"For weeks, the mad mothers persisted. When she slept beside me, I closed my eyes and there were the kids buckled into a sinking car, their mother watching from the shore. There was beautiful Brooke Shields passing her daughter to a nanny and bolting out the door. That mother cat bent over her kitten as if she had a mouse pinned beneath her paw. My grandmother kneeled to her daughter, bleaching her skin clean in the single-digit air. It was reasonable, likely even, that these women who scared me loved their children. Maybe they waited out their pregnancies impatiently, eager to feel the curve of their child in their arms. Maybe they sang the same lullabies their mothers sang them, or palmed their newborns’ skulls, feeling the breath surge through the hollow top, bewildered by the steadiness of this new life. Maybe they savored, just as I’d been doing. But then all that collapsed, and it was this moment of rupture I couldn’t kick—the when and the how and the why. It was the transformation that frightened me."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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'DWI Dude' guilty of swindling Colombian drug traffickers https://www.ksat.com/news/dwi-dude-guilty-of-swindling-colombian-drug-traffickers

Comment

"The group would tell clients that they can bribe government officials to dismiss or significantly reduce their charges. But there were no bribe or government officials they were in contact with, according to the news release. “This defendant-and his group-were running a scam on drug dealers – some of the biggest drug dealers in the world,” said U.S. Attorney Joe Brown. “Fortunately for him, these drug dealers chose to turn him into the FBI rather than handle it any other way."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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Oh, Texas.

 ‎· JustDuckie 1
Comment

this is hilarious

 ‎· LibSkrat 1
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R.E. Parrish on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/B4Q15tWJnf5/

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Everything Tastes Better in Winter https://therumpus.net/2019/10/everything-tastes-better-in-winter/

Comment

"In the low-slung sunlight, the mountain corpses glistened like unstrung pearls. I felt an awful kinship with the mountains. For years, I had wanted to look just like them, trimmed to the bone, ribs so sharp they could cut skin. I had made up some gods with deer-legs and hollow cheeks and sacrificed myself to an insatiable gobbler who ate me up from the inside. I was always cold. Like Agamemnon, and Cassiopeia, and all the others who fed their daughters to monsters or gods, I believed my sacrifice was for a greater good. Perfection over pasta. Beauty over bread. The more it hurt, the better. At lunch in high school, I watched my friends sink their forks into lasagna and enchiladas and all my other ex-favorite foods. I looked away, digging my nails into my palms as the gobbler dug its fangs into my guts."

 ‎· JustDuckie
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CW: eating disorders

 ‎· JustDuckie
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This ballet school is for Muslim kids and it uses poetry instead of music https://metro.co.uk/2019/10/24/ballet-school-for-muslim-kids-uses-poetry-instead-of-music-for-performances-10974080/

Comment

"Grace and Poise Academy in London opened up earlier this year with hopes of turning Muslim girls into little ballerinas. The school offers a unique poetry syllabus instead of music to be more inclusive as some followers of the Islamic faith don’t listen to music. But it’s also open to non-Muslims. While many Muslims do listen to music, some believe that certain instruments are not permissible while others who listen say it’s the nature of some music that should be avoided (i.e obscene lyrics). And so the academy decided to avoid it altogether and provide a more mindful experience."

 ‎· JustDuckie
Comment

"‘We’re passionate about child development,’ explains Maisie and Sajedah to Metro.co.uk ‘We believe that this unique approach to ballet helps the child’s physical, emotional, social and cognitive development. ‘Until now ballet has been inaccessible to many Muslims and Grace and Poise aims to cater to the Community. ‘It also aims to provide a space to celebrate Islamic Identity and support the harmonious connection between mind body and soul. ‘We are a school that aims to make ballet accessible to Muslims however we are of course open to all, we do have some non-Muslim students that came to us because they love our unique approach using poetry.’"

 ‎· JustDuckie
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» posted to JustDuckie, nature, and science

A Corridor Runs Through It — THE BITTER SOUTHERNER https://bittersoutherner.com/a-corridor-runs-through-it-everglades

Comment

"Even in my own Floridian imagination, my home state has shifted from wild green to lifeless gray. Florida is no longer “dotted” with development, but with wilderness. Come to Florida, the advertisements say, there are gators, tropical flowers, wide open oceans. BUT DON’T WORRY, they can’t reach you from your air-conditioned hotel room, restaurant, Disney vacation. Come and look! You definitely don’t have to touch. This is Florida’s new reality. The stats confirm it: Every day, 1,000 new people move to the state, and each hour, 12 acres of land is developed."

 ‎· JustDuckie
Comment

"This is no place for claustrophobics. But of all the landscapes I’ve had the good fortune to explore, none makes me feel as alive as a swamp does. I don’t mean exuberance or joy. It is a sense of life fed by ever-present danger. Swamps are marked by death — all the rotting organic matter that mars its floor and gives it life — and by risk — every nook and cranny could hide snakes, gators, and more. A swamp jars you from default, autopilot amble and into an alertness of a dark, living world around you. Rilke’s words reverberate as a mantra for this wooden morass: “Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.”"

 ‎· JustDuckie 2

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