Interweb Finds: Pups to make you smile, advice from Hunter S. Thompson & more

Point Mugu beach camping

Oh, how quickly the weekends fly by. Isn’t that always the way? Still, I’ve had a pretty good one so far. I commiserated with lady classmates at happy hour, basked in the warm temperatures (it’s November?), and made some progress on a big story due for my broadcast class this week. The photo above is from beach camping last weekend. Yes, I slept right where that photo was taken! And I woke up to seals frolicking in the ocean. It’s a good life.

Here are a few of my favorite web finds:

A scientific explanation of why we often don’t like pictures of ourselves. (I can finally stop obsessing over how weird I look when my hair is parted to the opposite side in pictures—it’s normal!)

Weiner dog GIFs to get you through your day.

Bonus puppy find! Dogs saying “I love you.”

Would you like to be Facebook friends with your favorite TV character and get updates on their lives when you’re not watching? Here’s a cool read on the future of storytelling.

A powerful essay: When this man’s wife was battling breast cancer, friends and neighbors kept them well-fed. But, as the family learned later, no one brings dinner when your daughter is an addict.

20-year-old Hunter S. Thompson’s advice on how to lead a meaningful, purposeful life:

And it seems almost ridiculous to say that a man MUST function in a pattern of his own choosing; for to let another man define your own goals is to give up one of the most meaningful aspects of life — the definitive act of will which makes a man an individual.

Part mini-documentary, part music video: Celebrities (including Kanye West, Lindsay Lohan, Olivia Wilde, and Shaun White) explain what they love about L.A.—flaws and all.


That’s all for this week. The next few days will be insanity as I work on school stuff, but luckily, I’ve got margarita mix handy for the end of each long day. What are you up to this week?

Interweb Finds: An abandoned Paris apartment, finding fulfilling work & more

first barbecue of the year

How was everyone’s weekend? I spent mine allergic and snotty, but I did enjoy spending time with the little girls I used to nanny, catching up with an old friend at happy hour, and savoring the first barbecue of the year with John (above: drool). I also just got back from a run, which wasn’t as painful as I thought it’d be (though the potato salad I’d just eaten still hadn’t properly been digested… TMI?). Tomorrow’s weather isn’t looking so hot, but the rest of the week should stay consistently in the 60s, which I’m cool with. More spring weather, please!

Now for this week’s link round-up:

In case you didn’t catch my Twitter or Facebook updates about it, I did a podcast with Peter DeWolf for his Petecast blogger series. If you want to listen to us chat about writing, useless talents, and social awkwardness, listen here! Also, my latest Pooping Rainbows post is total stream of consciousness for your mild entertainment.

This is fascinating: A photographer took pictures of thousands of women from different countries and mixed their faces together to come up with one image of each country’s average woman.

Here’s one hell of a time capsule. This Paris apartment was abandoned for 70 years, and there are some pretty spectacular relics that were found inside.

A moving essay by a writer who prevented a man from committing suicide while contemplated his own:

“On the day I convinced Chris not to jump off the bridge, I thought maybe I turned a corner, maybe I could embrace positivity again, maybe I could hear the words I had said to him: ‘I’m sure that no one wants you to die.'”

For your WTF find of the day, couples posed together in compromising positions—and vacuum-wrapped like meat.

As usual, another fascinating read from Brain Pickings on how to find fulfilling work:

“The lack of any clear positive relationship between rising income and rising happiness has become one of the most powerful findings in the modern social sciences. Once our income reaches an amount that covers our basic needs, further increases add little, if anything, to our levels of life satisfaction.”

For every girl or woman who has EVER felt the need to change or play down her best qualities to make other people happy: read this declaration.

And on that excellent note, I’m going to go shove some more tissues up my nose and think about daunting projects like cleaning out my closet (without actually doing them). Happy Sunday!

Interweb Finds: A Victoria’s Secret prank, the science of optimism & more

San Francisco house

I attended another beginners’ yoga class yesterday, and before the session came to an end, the instructor asked us to think of what we have to be grateful for. It was a no-brainer for me. This week, I am especially grateful to have my family.

Let’s see some of the web highlights from this week…

Notice how every house tour I share is in California? This gorgeous Pacific Heights, San Francisco home (pictured above) is move-in ready as far as I’m concerned.

The creators of Uglydolls reached a point in their success where they had to decide to either quit or go all the way with their idea. (I know because I watched a lot of TV yesterday, and they were on the show “How I Made My Millions.”) An article I read earlier this week addresses that dilemma asking, Is it time for you to stop dabbling and get serious?

Is it dorky that I just want to give all my loved ones pretty calendars for Christmas? This lunar calendar also doubles as a lovely piece of art. Maybe I’ll just buy one for myself.

Feminists put Baltimore on the map in this Victoria’s Secret prank. The chain’s PINK line  seemed as though it was taking a step in a (gasp!) woman-empowering direction. (The panties with “Consent is Sexy” on the croch are a nice change from “Sure Thing.”) The store’s own employees were gushing with pride. But nope. Just a hoax that VS was forced to address. (An interview with the pranksters here.)

A fascinating read from Brain Pickings about the science of optimism.

Optimism starts with what may be the most extraordinary of human talents: mental time travel. That is, the ability to move back and forth through time and space in one’s mind. To think positively about our prospects, it helps to be able to imagine ourselves in the future. Although most of us take this ability for granted, our capacity to envision a different time and place is critical for our survival.

Speaking of Brain Pickings, here’s an interview with the woman behind the site.

The woman who rails against her contemporaries for turning their backs on old books said she had no interest in writing one. “That’s such an antiquated model of thinking,” she said. “Why would I want to write something that’s going to have the shelf life of a banana?”

Photographer Tim Flach’s More Than Human features beautiful images of surprisingly expressive creatures.

After the tragic and horrific events in Connecticut on Friday, I felt conflicted and guilty about engaging in an act as trivial as blogging. (These things give us all a somber dose of perspective.) I decided not to write about it at length—I have no appropriate words. But there are ways we can help. Aside from that, all we can do is make a promise to never forget those victims and their families.