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On The Secret Library of Dunhuang, Where "Printing Was a Form of Prayer"

Armchair archive-divers can now examine the earliest complete star chart in the world, read a prayer written in Hebrew by a merchant on his way from Babylon to China, inspect a painting of a Christian saint in the guise of a bodhisattva, examine a contract drawn up for the sale of a slave girl to cover a silk trader’s debt, or page through a book on divination written in Turkic runes (if a boy finds eagle droppings, the omen is good; if an old ox is eaten by ants, it’s bad).

This is one of those moments when I think that we live in a very wondrous time.

Posted on October 11, 2013 at 2:04 pm 1

On Hairpin Travel Serial, Part Five: Real City

@dontannoyme Commonwealthers seem to have awesome travel visa programs that those of us from the US can't seem to take advantage of because our immigration/visa system is a dicks to everyone! So yeah, I'm honestly jealous and you guys seem to have more fun.

Posted on October 9, 2013 at 10:47 am 1

On Friday Open Thread

@themegnapkin I live in Maryland, work in the nonprofit sector and it feels like 75% of my friends, family, and social network is either 1) a federal employee/contractor or 2) has a loved one or friend who are. This shutdown and the quotes from people in the hardliner Reps' districts about how the shutdown isn't affecting them at all makes me rage so, so much.

ALSO, DC gov't might have to shut down if this lasts longer than nine days because their budget is required to have congressional approval! Even though they are basically autonomous and collect their own taxes! WTFFFFFFFFF

Posted on October 4, 2013 at 5:17 pm 0

On Friday Open Thread

@adorable-eggplant Perfect gif.

Posted on October 4, 2013 at 5:14 pm 1

On The Health Care Pie

@harebell I know plenty of fit people who have chronic issues with shoulders and knees and similar joints because, you know, repetitive use.

Soooo short-sighted.

Posted on October 4, 2013 at 10:42 am 1

On The Boy Who Continued to Live as Harry Potter and Actually Could Not Really Escape It Ever

@frigwiggin On this note, did anyone else kind of swoon inside at the idea of Daniel Radcliffe and Jon Hamm working together, possibly being on the same screen??

I mean, I like them both for such dramatically different reasons, but.. !!!!

Posted on October 3, 2013 at 4:52 pm 0

On Ask Baba Yaga: The Compilation

Baby's First Baba! Baby's First Baba!

Posted on October 2, 2013 at 2:02 pm 2

On Interview with Filmmaker Izzy Chan: "Have we adjusted our expectations of what a man needs to bring to the table?"

@queenofbithynia I was also thinking a lot about this excerpt:

You know, I had a similar perspective to you when this happened. I was biased towards the idea that men just needed to step up. For me, my resentment wasn’t even in me having a problem supporting the family, but in me just expecting him to do more work. I’d have finished the dishes by now—why hasn't he? How come, if he’s looking for a job, he hasn’t sent out ten resumes today like I would have?

But, having spent a lot of time with other families who are experiencing the same thing—and this is not a final conclusion, but something I’m still thinking about—I think it’s actually as much if not more about how women have to shift their expectations. It’s still very hard for me to say that, because I understand what you’re saying—I never thought this could possibly be my problem.

I confronted a lot of this myself when my husband was un(/der)employed for a year and a half, and while I definitely would get frustrated that there were still dishes in the sink, I'm not sure if I'm comfortable with the implication that the onus is solely on women to shift our expectations in order to make the relationship work. I think that's something that both parties have to come to peace with in order to make any relationship work, much less one that gets as tense as one where a partner wants to be working and isn't.

I did think a lot about this idea that I had about how he might see it as somehow more shameful that he had to take a greater share of the household chores than before, though. It didn't actually bother him, but I was a bit horrified to find that I was worried it would and would try to do just as much of the chores as before, anyway.

Posted on September 25, 2013 at 5:51 pm 6

On Ask Baba Yaga: I Seek Comfort From Others Because I Am Uncomfortable With Myself

I really needed this advice. Thanks, Baba.

Posted on September 25, 2013 at 12:38 pm 0

On "Two Things Guys Don't Like Hearing About"

@Tragically Ludicrous It's gratifying to have a common but unspoken question answered, instead of the numerous iterations of "will sitting/standing/walking/moving kill me?"

Posted on September 24, 2013 at 10:33 am 3