The scales of justice cannot function unless the whole truth is placed upon them. Whether or not our faulty systems, set up to honor the colonizing, rich, white, and male, recognize what hangs in the balance, our souls do. It is the health of our consciousness that is weighed now. And always. In these circumstances, to feel out of balance is an honest assessment of the corruption we are weighed against. In times like these our pain, and also our numbness, is a marker of our health, not our illness.

Chani Nicholas

I am moving to São Paulo.

I would say that I have never moved to a city knowing so little about it, but seven years ago I moved to Charlotte because I thought it was Charleston.

Things I know about São Paulo:

  1. It is the largest city in the southern hemisphere.
  2. It is not the capital of Brazil.
  3. It is made of many neighborhoods and we will probably live in Vila Madalena or Pinheiros, both referred to as the “Brooklyn” of São Paulo.
  4. There is actually a neighborhood in São Paulo called Brooklin but it is not the “Brooklyn” of São Paulo.
  5. It is the third largest Italian city in the world outside of Rome and Milan.
  6. It has the largest Japanese population outside of Japan.
  7. It is home to a hella diverse food scene.
  8. The traffic is pretty bad.
  9. The weather is perfect enough that I will be able to figure out if I get sad every year because it’s cold and dreary (as I have suspected) or for other reasons (that I will entertain if needed after a year with a warm winter).
  10. We can probably afford a place with a balcony.

There is no point in making a list of things I don’t know about São Paulo.

Survival Kit: Week of 01.29.17

  • This helpful lil graphic on continua of privilege.
  • Beyoncé’s pregnant-with-twins aesthetic is hitting me in all the right spots–flowers, black royalty, Frida Kahlo vibes.
  • A last minute trip to Trinidad will do the soul good.
  • “There isn’t a lot we get to control in life, but once you learn a technical skill, no one can ever take that away from you!”
  • Pablo Neruda’s Ode to the Artichoke:

    with her basket,
    who fearlessly
    picks out
    an artichoke,
    looking at it, examining it
    against the light as if it were an egg,

  • An episode of The Splendid Table in which a Sri Lankan baker named Samantha is interviewed about her use of spice in baking + Matt Goulding discusses shokunin + Alex Stupak from our favvy Empellon al Pastor talks through his tortilla recipe.
  • Bless you, Melissa McCarthy.
  • The Combahee River Collective Statement, circa 1974:

Our politics initially sprang from the shared belief that Black women are inherently valuable, that our liberation is a necessity not as an adjunct to somebody else’s may because of our need as human persons for autonomy. This may seem so obvious as to sound simplistic, but it is apparent that no other ostensibly progressive movement has ever consIdered our specific oppression as a priority or worked seriously for the ending of that oppression…. We realize that the only people who care enough about us to work consistently for our liberation are us. Our politics evolve from a healthy love for ourselves, our sisters and our community which allows us to continue our struggle and work.

Survival Kit: Week of 01.15.17

  • In 1787, a scientist brought different pieces of blue paper up to the top of a mountain and held them against the sky in an attempt to measure sky blueness.
  • This freaking uplifting episode of 2 Dope Queens. I listened to their conversation with Nicole Byer three times, including right before a round two job interview, to give me that dope queen glow.
  • Two ethics lawyers, one Republican and one Democrat, offer up a helpful primer about the myriad ways in which Trump is in violation of ethics laws.

EISEN: We’re going to pay for it. That’s the problem with all of these Trump conflicts. By failing to make the clean break with his ownership in interests, he ends up benefiting himself at the expense of the rest of us. The tax dollars that are going to have to be used in the United States and abroad to protect his properties are tax dollars that could be better spent helping the American people deal with the economic impacts that in particular his core voters felt.

So this is going to come out of all our pockets. This is another example of what’s wrong with these conflicts. He’s doing deals to benefit himself, not to benefit the American people, and he’s putting American people at risk. Are we going to get into conflicts around the world because of these – if, God forbid, I hope it doesn’t happen – there’s an attack on one of his properties, it’s just terribly wrong. And there was a simple solution, and he chose not to do it. And, as you can hear, we are very, very disappointed.