Reading through Pratik’s jottings about Goodreads made me realize that the biggest obstacle to me switching to any alternative book-tracking site (existing or forthcoming) is that while I don’t really make use of the social aspects (I don’t have Goodreads friends), I do use it to follow authors so that I’m alerted when they have new books coming out. Any potential Goodreads substitute would need to replicate that feature, or figure its way to something analogous, to entice me into switching. I’d love to take one more step away from large ecosystems like Amazon, but alternatives need to think hard not just about avoiding the bad things about the attention economies of scale such ecosystems offer but about finding substitutes for the good things they offer.

Everything about Ed Yong’s master list of how the United States systemically and systematically botched its response to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic is depressing, but the most brutal part comes early on.

Deadlier pathogens almost certainly exist. Wild animals harbor an estimated 40,000 unknown viruses, a quarter of which could potentially jump into humans. How will the U.S. fare when “we can’t even deal with a starter pandemic?,” Zeynep Tufekci, a sociologist at the University of North Carolina and an Atlantic contributing writer, asked me.

Emphasis added.

Today during one of my intermittent checks of the web for psychoconsultants who are (1) local enough, (2) covered by my insurance, and (3) potentially applicable to a midlife-diagnosed adult autistic with Opinions About Autism And Psychotherapy, I found a place that’s a fifteen-minute bus ride away. Only one of the relevant people on staff currently is taking new clients; I sent an intake inquiry. I forgot to save a copy of what I sent them via their online form, otherwise I’d include it here. I don’t suppose browsers somewhere temporarily save web forms you’ve submitted?

There’s been an adjustment to how I’m posting the August photoblogging challenge. I’d started yesterday by including some copy that used the day’s prompt. I’m not going to be doing that after all. It’s up to you to have a sense, or not, of how my photos fit.

The newsletter of Spectrum News this morning re-linked two older articles about kids who “lost” their autism diagnosis having all sorts of developmental, learning, psychological, or psychiatric issues “to the researchers’ surprise”. One of the articles is about research I’ve mentioned before, and I just wanted to underscore here what I said there, which is that if you’re “surprised” at a result, you should be asking why — and the crucial why here would be asking whether or not the “early intervention” treatments to which these kids were subjected in fact might be responsible for all of these other problems they have after they “lose” the diagnostic label of autistic. By which I mean: perhaps they are still in fact autistic and you’ve simply trained them to suppress it, leading to all the other things you’re “surprised” by afterward.

This week I’ll be watching Stargirl, Wynonna Earp, The 100, Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, Doom Patrol, and starting in on the finale season of The Rain. I’m into season two of Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts on weekend mornings, I’m starting the final season in my Justice League Unlimited rewatch, and I’m into part two of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.

Hannah Beachler, production designer on Black Panther, has been urging people to stop using black-and-white imagery from the civil rights movement “so people stop thinking it was 1000 years ago”; she’s been posting examples of color photography from the time. Along the way she tweeted a link to this remarkable interview with Martin Luther King Jr. from 1967, eleven months before he was assassinated. Carve out half an hour to watch this; it really kicks into gear at almost exactly the halfway mark. It’s bracing, compelling, and not only a little depressing: so much of what he says still can be said today — and is.

‪I’m thinking that two and a half years of regularly tracking my mood throughout the day is enough. It’s become as pointlessly habitual as Foursquare/Swarm checkins had become. I’m not learning anything, really, that I wouldn’t be aware of just from living itself without the incessant noting of each change in mood or activity. At this point, honestly, it’s just become another thing to which I have to devote my limited psychic resources, which seems at best unnecessary waste and at worst self-defeating.