Unlimited Data + Amazon survival stories + procrastination
May I recommend
Firstly, I missed you guys last week! I was at the platonic ideal of a Canadian cottage. Cold beautiful lake; long, terrifying drive on an increasingly narrow and steep road-track; adorable, old cottage with a septic system requiring you to “let it mellow”; stunning views of water; eerie loon calls in the middle of the night; the distant sound of a train passing; four hundred metric tons of Skittles; games of dominoes and an attempt at learning Canasta… Awes-mazing.
On to recommendations!
This one is prosaic as hell, but can I recommend getting unlimited data for your cellphone and Internet plan? Obviously, if you can’t afford it, then don’t do it, but if you’ve got any stretch in your budget, this might be the place to splash out.
I am a cheap person who does not spend money willy nilly and for many years I resisted the lure of unlimited data. I studied cellphone plans, reviewed my own data use, cross-referenced it with the rates, calculated the best program and I’d do the same thing with my home internet. Finally, I’d settle on the Silver Package, or the Second Tier Plus.
Then the Pandemic arrived and two months in I had become well-versed in making strange purchases… A pair of crushed velvet Lululemon leggings in a shade of pink that exactly resembled my own leg colour, had my limbs been lightly boiled? Check. Were they on sale and un-returnable, Amy? But of course! Not one, but two car air vent iPhone holders even though we only have one car? It only makes sense to have a backup. Did I instantly and irretrievably lose the backup? Obviously! A longline bra from Nordstroms that after I wriggle myself into it, immediately and angrily rolled itself up to rest in a tight vicious band biting into my ribs? Yuppers. I’m assuming no refunds possible? You KNOW it!
So I was ready, is what I was saying, to stop fixating on saving pennies and just make an impulse purchase. Unlike the above regrettable decisions, however, for this one, I well, have no regrets.
Now there is no worrying about all the Netflix we’re watching (we should be watching MORE). Nor do I fret about going for a walk whilst FaceTiming someone - instead, I just stick that person in my pocket and let them enjoy the sensation of being in a washing machine on the gentle cycle. Didn’t download the podcasts for the road trip? Not a worry, m’lady, just stream ‘em. Need to download a 300 page manuscript whilst camping in the middle of a forest because you forgot to do your critiquing job? Don’t panic, m’gentleman, hotspot that sucker!
A friend of mine moved to France once (brag) and she was fretting about how to get her mountains of baggage from the airport to the place she was staying. Would she be able to carry everything? How would she manage it, and the train? How far was the metro station from her new apartment? I suggested she quit worrying about all of that and just pay for a taxi. Spend the money. Make life easier. That is what she did, but she still talks about what a revelatory moment that was (another brag).
Our lives are so filled with annoying, petty problems. Micro-issues that make everything slightly harder and slightly more irritating. Isn’t it wonderful when you can just pony up and make one of them disappear? That, more than the fancy car or the (very stupid) Lululemon leggings, is actually what we should be spending our money on.
Tell me about a boring purchase that makes your life easier in the comments below!
This is even better than the whale story
This story is incredible. It’s a long read, but everything about it is amazing. I couldn’t figure out what to use as a pull quote, because being the sole survivor of a plane crash in the Amazon jungle isn’t even the most interesting thing about this woman’s life.
From a window seat in a back row, the teenager watched a bolt of lightning strike the plane’s right wing. She remembers the aircraft nose-diving and her mother saying, evenly, “Now it’s all over.” She remembers people weeping and screaming. And she remembers the thundering silence that followed. The aircraft had broken apart, separating her from everyone else onboard. “The next thing I knew, I was no longer inside the cabin,” Dr. Diller said. “I was outside, in the open air. I hadn’t left the plane; the plane had left me.”
You don’t procrastinate for the reasons you think you procrastinate
I loved this article. I’m usually not a procrastinator, but I can’t seem to sit down and write a new novel, and it is literally impossible for me to clean up my work inbox, so there are definitely spots where I castigate myself. Guess what, we don’t procrastinate because we’re lazy or bad at time management! We do it because we are scared (or bored, or resentful, or uncertain, but probably mostly because we are scared).
Procrastination isn’t a unique character flaw or a mysterious curse on your ability to manage time, but a way of coping with challenging emotions and negative moods induced by certain tasks — boredom, anxiety, insecurity, frustration, resentment, self-doubt and beyond.
Representing diversity in audiobooks
I found this very interesting. My forthcoming novel THE HONEYBEE EMERALDS (March 2022) has a diverse cast of point of view characters - a young Persian-British woman, two white Americans and an older French woman. According to my publisher, it will likely be turned into an audiobook and I am curious how they will handle the narration for these disparate voices. It’s set in Paris, so there is a lot of opportunity for Monty Python-esque “fetchez la vache” type French accents too. INTERESTING.
A character’s accent can be an evocation of her origins and identity, but it can also be—as was the case with Apu, the Indian-born convenience-store clerk on The Simpsons, voiced by white actor Hank Azaria—a mocking caricature. (Azaria recently announced that he would no longer voice Apu and expressed a desire to “go to every single Indian person in this country and personally apologize.”) “Actors love to do accents!” Campbell told me. “It’s fun to do vocal gymnastics, but we have had a moment of recognizing that there are certain accents where you’re appropriating someone’s culture.”
Ha ha - I literally just posted this kind of picture on Instagram
Please accept this as my formal resignation from the role of big hat you wear in every photo you post on Instagram. I am grateful for all the experience I have gained; however, I feel it is necessary to share why I’ve chosen to leave my position.
Richard Kadrey @Richard_KadreyForty Large Women In Strange Gang Terrorize London https://t.co/ak3fvPUDwX
Tearing up, TikTok
I found this very helpful - I have made all the non-Inuit mistakes in this video
Metaphor for our mindset?
I get it, it’s been real hot.
I might do this to my brother. His response would be similar.
This is embarrassing
A bit much
I prefer Pepsi
I believe this - it’s not the listener’s fault
I also get excited about cardinals
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Amy Tector, The Honeybee Emeralds (March 2022)