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Joshua Whiting

learner, writer, creator, librarianish person

essays


My Revisionist History

Posted: 2022.03.07
I often find myself tinkering with already-published notes on this site. I initially thought of this as a confession, because at times I’ve felt that editing old posts (beyond fixing minor typos or bugs) is somehow cheating. But, no, revision is not cheating. There is no rule of any sort that I cannot change, improve, or remove old posts as I see fit. It turns out that this is my own website and I make the rules around here.
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this winter break

Posted: 2022.01.01
this winter break I was going to write a bunch revamp my website establish good reading writing learning sharing habits for the coming year but I didn’t really do those things and though I didn’t do them I can’t seem to let the idea of still doing those things just go away so it may still happen just not necessarily in concert with an arbitrary Gregorian year change or an extended time
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Writing the Great American Email

Posted: 2021.11.18

The last rays of the sun transfigured the water tower, the freeway overpasses, and the tops of the pins on the bowling alley sign, as I sat at my computer in an emptied office. I hadn’t noticed the sky darkening as I tapped away on my keyboard, compulsively shift-tabbing the cursor, re-reading, revising, substituting words, deleting phrases, and reorganizing paragraphs.

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I AM ASYNCHRONOUS LIFESTYLE 3000

Posted: 2021.10.22
I. Goodbye Facebook II. ASYNCHRONOUS LIFESTYLE 3001 – I. Goodbye Facebook So I am finally doing it - deleting my Facebook account. Not even Kate DiCamillo can stop me this time. I just have to stay clean by not logging in ever again for 30 days, as the last of their slimy hoops left for me to jump through. I drafted a long, awkward letter to my Facebook friends that I intended to post on the platform a few days before going through with the actual deletion.
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A Horse Called Dreamer

Posted: 2020.08.05

The school district received a herd of ponies. I was supposed to catalog them, barcode them, and figure out a good protocol for checking them out to students.

They were all in an old corral out in the desert, and seemed wild and restless, as if perhaps they had just been captured and swept in from that desert and we hadn’t exactly been told the truth about their (lack of) training. Also, it didn’t seem like anyone was taking care of them out there so it was maybe going to fall to me to feed them, scrape out their hooves, and do whatever else needs to be done for horses. I don’t know anything about horses.

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On Whether To Share Things

Posted: 2020.07.27
I’ve been here before. It’s a cycle for me. The compulsion to exist on social media, followed soon after by silence. I’ve posted variations on this dilemma before. I’ve almost posted on it many times more. I want and need to just live my life, do my things, think my thoughts, and not be performative about any of it. I despise so much in life that is performative, and I want not to contribute to it.
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The Opposite of Curation Isn't A Mess But Silence

Posted: 2020.06.22
Been thinking a lot about curation, both professionally and personally. Where, when, how, whether to do it. I’ve been in a holding pattern about sharing things for a long time now - I have digital and physical notebooks full of things to potentially share (good and helpful things, I believe), but it seems too big a deal to share them. There are too many options, each with benefits and drawbacks, each with different audiences, or in some cases no audience at all.
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A Break for a Minute to Imagine

Posted: 2020.04.16

In the past month I’ve found myself paralyzed in regards to social media, both personally and professionally. Whenever I peak into my feeds I’ve been easily overwhelmed by the content I see: deluges of RESOURCES FOR “ONLINE LEARNING1,” endless interludes of stay-at-home inanities and banalities, and then literal death and suffering, since underneath all of this inconvenience, opportunism, and political posturing it turns out there is an actual tragic pandemic that is taking lives.

I haven’t known how to contribute to this world, and ultimately decided the best way to contribute would be to just stay quiet. Or maybe I just choked and failed by dropping out of this resource-sharing, curating, connecting game at the very moment when it was suddenly THE THING TO DO.

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I Watched Killer of Sheep, 1978

Posted: 2020.01.05

Kids singing rhymes Dogs barking Car ignitions turning over but failing to start This bitter earth Scuffling and throwing rocks An ice cream truck on the next street over That’s America to me

Killer of Sheep DVD Cover Image

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Happy Life Day

Posted: 2019.11.28

I forgot to observe Life Day several days ago, but I’ll observe it today on the Internet and on my website. I did share Life Day with my kids (just about 7 minutes worth) soon after when I had come to myself and realigned my priorities. They kind of loved it, and kind of thought it was terrible, which is just as it should be.

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THE VVITCH

Posted: 2019.10.19

It is currently 4 AM and I am awake for some reason, and I just heard a noise downstairs of unclear origin.

Maybe I shouldn’t have watched this with my 4 month old puppy around. Was that a mistake? Will she live deliciously now? Will she grow up and randomly kill us all one morning like that damn goat?

The VVitch Movie Poster - TMDB

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5 Things I Learned by Stealing and Reading the Earthsea Trilogy

Posted: 2014.08.19
A few weeks go I was at my wife’s family’s cabin and I was lurking around in a bedroom browsing my in-laws' old bookshelf. Hidden in the midst of a notable collection of Louis L’Amour novels, with an old framed photograph sitting on the shelf in front of them, I discovered copies of the original Earthsea Trilogy by Ursula LeGuin: A Wizard of Earthsea, The Tombs of Atuan, and The Farthest Shore.
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