Kristan Hoffman - Writing Dreams Into Reality
Thu Feb 20 2014

Stuff worth reading (Sochi edition)

“On #sochiproblems as I see them” by Vicki Boykis

I’m more than thrilled that attention is finally being called to how fucked up Russia is; it’s only something I’ve been talking about for years.  And it’s fine to make fun of something, but when that something is not your own, not something you understand, babies, goddamnit, you’ve got to be kind as Kurt Vonnegut would say. And kindness from journalists means adding context and not being sensationalist. Not playing the Ugly American Broadcaster.

“#SochiProblems Is More of An Embarrassment For America Than It Is For Russia” by Sarah Kaufman

Russians are not pleased by the trending #SochiProblems. Rather, they are “puzzled by why the Americans and the British are so very happy that the details are a little screwy, the way they generally are in Russia.”

So this is my plea to @SochiProblems, whining journalists and social media fiends: Have just a bit more respect for Russians, because while you might think you’re just ridiculing the Olympics, for many, this is their everyday life.

And a personal note:

I was disappointed in — but not really surprised by — the mass mockery of Russia that took place leading into the Sochi Olympics. Yes, some things are genuinely and harmlessly amusing (like the coat rack incident in the second article) and some things are seriously worth criticizing (like the human rights issues, or dangerous hotel water). But the cheap cultural jabs? The mean-spirited and purposeful misunderstandings? Gross. And worse: distracting. They took conversation and attention away from the problems that really need scrutiny. They gave people permission to laugh and move on.

Even many of the journalists came off, at least to me, as snotty Americans whining about less-than-4-star conditions. Guess what, folks? Not everyone has it as good and comfortable as we do. And you know what else? Not everyone does things the same way we do. Just because the Russian way of life is different from ours doesn’t necessarily make it bad or wrong.

Most of the snark has dissipated since the Olympics actually started, I think. We’re focusing on the events, as we should be. I just hope that after the last fireworks of the Closing Ceremony fade into the night, everyone walks away having learned something — having taken a closer look at themselves and their actions and their values. Because the medals aren’t the only things that matter. And as we’ve seen in the past, the Olympic torch has the power to cast its light across history.

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Mon Feb 10 2014

Tweet treats

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Sun Jan 19 2014

Insta-inspiration

Earlier today I tweeted:

It’s true: such a silly little thing thing really can brighten my day. Many of the people I follow on Instagram manage to make their daily meals look like art — just with good lighting, fresh ingredients, and smart composition/framing. Their photos inspire me to eat better, and to appreciate the “mundane beauty” in my life.

cacahuete_sr jelitodeleon lolypopp3

Since we’re already talking about fabulous photography, here are a few more Instagrammers I adore:

ifitwags balletzaida pchyburrs
ariefhaskara arielelasko austinxc04

Dogs, doors, dancers, darling children, and… woodworking. (Okay, I couldn’t make a D out of that one.) It’s amazing what people do out there. Amazing how they see and share their worlds.

By the way, I updated my hand-drawn social media icons to include a link to my own Instagram account, and to show the Twitter bird instead of the “t” (which looked too similar to the Tumblr logo). The new icon line-up makes me so happy! Is it weird how much little details like that can please me?

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Fri Jan 3 2014

Resolution

20140103-215912.jpg

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Fri Oct 11 2013

Two important messages

Friend and fellow writer Dustin is a very talented artist, and he’s participating in this thing called #inktober. I’m an amateur doodler at best, but I like the spirit of #inktober, so I’m going to do the “5K” version, meaning 1 drawing a week. Here is my first:

I'm an amateur doodler at best, but I'm trying the #inktober "5K."

Riley wanted to participate too, but he can’t hold a pen, so we did #kibbleart instead:

put-love-first

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