It’s getting cold out, but it’s good to get out and walk every day. For instance, if I hadn’t done so on a particularly lovely afternoon this week, I might have missed knowing that someone in my neighborhood has lawn art made from a radiator.

I bought my plane tickets from New York to Columbus, Ohio, six weeks ago. This was to avoid the Greyhound I was forced to take last year — well, not forced, but yes forced: Because of the timing of my move from Chicago, I found myself priced out of flying. Even buying Thanksgiving travel in early October, I had to shift my travel days so as not to pay totally absurd amounts of money.

Last year, while taking the bus was its own adventure (the surprise decision to make the entire bus watch a direct-to-waiting area Scooby Doo movie at top volume between 10 and midnight was great), at least this year I only have to deal with a worldwide travel alert. Usually these don’t scare me, having come of age during a certain era of security alertness, but I confess that this time, I’d just like to get it over with as quickly as possible.

Which means I should probably pack soon. But first:

  • The Establishment says what we all need to hear about poverty appropriation, which should always make you remember how you felt about Derelicte.
  • Slate, in its best Slate-iest fashion, reminds us to think critically about some claims of cultural appropriation, particularly when it comes to things like yoga, which India has been trying to export to the West since the 19th century.
  • I too have fallen deeply in love with Jessica Jones, and part of that is for its amazing sex scenes, which have focused almost entirely on female pleasure. (Is this what it feels like for media to represent your gaze? Holy cats.) It brings me back to something YA author Foz Meadows wrote on Twitter this spring: that you can learn so much more about female desire from reading fanfiction than porn.
  • I’ll always read stories about why No Child Left Behind and the testing industrial complex are destroying childhood. Last month, Salon had a good entry in the field, about how toxic expectations can seep into your own life, because no family is an island.
  • Patti Smith stopped by New Hampshire Public Radio to talk writing for 10 minutes. What a great, brief workshop in keeping it real and keeping it you.

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