Having seen so many wonderful and awful things this week inspired me to do a roundup of them. Caveat: some of these things are hardly new, but I just found out about them this week.

Bad things first:

  • Facebook continues to be an asshole about privacy. Here’s how you can check if your settings are more public than you want them to be: Reclaim Privacy
  • Texas School Board is trying to rewrite history to suit a political agenda. Slavery is such an UGLY word.
  • A nun working in a Catholic hospital was excommunicated for allowing abortion when the pregnancy would have almost surely killed the mother. I’m sorry, but in my books the possibility of a life is nowhere near as important as an actual living person. And just so you know, according to Wikipedia’s Miscarriage article even though the miscarriage rate is only 1% after 10 weeks (she was on week 11), there’s no hope of the fetus being viable until week 20 and it takes until week 24 before viability is even probable. So that’s 13 weeks or approximately 3 months of the mother dying before the fetal life is not sacrificed. I’m not loving those odds.
  • Ronnie James Dio passed away. While I’ve seen what a relief it can be for someone with cancer to finally be rid of it, it still makes me sad. More info at Ronnie James Dio Official Site and a link to donate to a cancer fund in his name.

On to good things:

  • Neil Gaiman did a Q&A with 1 Book, 1 Twitter- people the transcript of which can be seen at: Twitter Q&A With Neil Gaiman
  • One of the people asking questions (ML140) had the most beautiful picture for a background. When I asked about it, he pointed me towards some more of the most breathtakingly beautiful pictures I’ve ever seen; Beautiful Libraries 3 and Libriophiliac Love Letter
  • Chul An Kwak makes tables that remind me of Cthulhu but were inspired by running horses.
  • Shit You Really Should Know made me laugh so much. I mean, English is not my native language and even I know quite a few of those things. Also, I have a friend who’s a linguaphile and that reminded me of her.
  • Speaking of linguaphiles (although I think this would fall more closely to the logophile camp): a list of very unusual words. My personal favourite? “Tarantism; An urge to overcome melancholy by dancing” I wonder if Quentin Tarantino knows about this?