On My Mind: July 2020

Monday Author:  Susanne Skinner

Man with Mask, Covid-19, pandemic, On My Mind, July 2020We’re at the half-way point of 2020, knee deep into summer. We’re also on a slow roll when it comes to seeing the end of Covid-19.

Isolation and self-care are new buzz words and we’re finding innovative ways to keep fit, challenge our mental skills, and make sourdough.

We rely on the internet to stay connected and informed. We’ve got time and I’ve got a few things on my July 2020 mind.

Posting without Fact Checking

Since I’m stuck at home, I find myself spending more time on social media. It’s a love-hate relationship and some days it lights my last nerve on fire. I’m talking about people who post things—anything—without checking to see if they are true.

Sometimes I wonder if the poster is joking, but most are political, so that would be a no.  I un-follow anyone using the platform for politics, and rarely see them, but once in a while something slips through.

Two cases in point. First, a post from the CDC, complete with photoshopped logo, saying it’s OK not to wear a mask if you’re healthy. The second, a fake tweet from Alexandria Ocasio Cortez claiming, “It’s vital that Governors maintain restrictions on businesses until after the November Elections because economic recovery will help Trump be re-elected.”

A quick fact check is all it takes to prevent the spread of false information and to keep you from looking foolish.

Pink Panther Pink

Pink Panther Pink, Pantone Matching SystemMGM and Pantone collaborated to create a new color called Pink Panther Pink.  Pantone Color Institute VP Laurie Pressman says the undertones of blue and yellow are “intended to capture Pink Panther’s irreverent charm and suave sophistication, conveying the signature ultra-cool style of this lovable prankster.”  I see Pepto Bismol.

Do You Need an Umbrella Hat?

Everyone has at least one umbrella stashed in the back seat of their car. They’ve been around forever and let’s face it, it’s a practical solution to rain. Except there are those who feel the umbrella’s time has come and gone.

Consider the options! The question is, are you bold enough to embrace one of them?  If so, the umbrella hat may be for you.

In Other News: July 2020

He Said, She Said:  AOC and Yoho

It all began when Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez expressed the idea that increasing unemployment and poverty rates contribute to a rise in crime.

In Other News, On My Mind, July 2020That didn’t sit well with Representative Ted Yoho who made the steps of the Capitol his bully pulpit. He accosted her (in front of reporters) calling her “disgusting, crazy and dangerous.” Then, as a walking-away-afterthought, he called her a “f— bitch.”

Mr. Yoho offered a pretend apology on the House floor promoting an epic floor response from Ocasio-Cortez.

This transcends politics. Mr. Yoho speaks these words like he owns them. They are like an old flannel shirt, comfortable and familiar. He shows us he is no stranger to this kind of language.

Ted meant what he said and said what he meant. I have daughters and I am someone’s daughter; this is unacceptable. Thank you, AOC for showing us that when hate is loud, love must not be silent. 

In the Kitchen with Suze

I make no secret of my snob approach to chocolate chip cookies. I’ve spent years testing recipes and only a few are worthy. Last week Tara O’Brady’s recipe crossed my news feed and I was immediately intrigued. I followed her instructions exactly and the result is an amazingly delicious cookie! You need these in your life.

50s woman in kitchen, In the Kitchen with Suze, cooking, recipesLast Saturday leftover chicken became the inspiration for BBQ chicken pizza. In theory my idea was good. I planned to use my homemade mango BBQ sauce, but when I went to retrieve it, I found the jar of pumpkin I thought I threw out.

I needed a quick and easy replacement and discovered this no fuss sauce that is both sweet and tangy. No chopping or dicing, just ingredients measured into the pan and cooked for 15 minutes. It’s a keeper.

Making pizza dough is not hard, and this no-rise recipe is my new go to. It is, as my friend Cyndy and I like to say, a happy dough. Perfect for two build-your-own pizzas on a Saturday night.

Read ~ Watch ~ Listen: July 2020

Isolation is keeping us home bound.  Entertainment must be found within and to that end I offer some excellent options. 

Read 

Susanne Skinner, Read-Watch-Listen, books, movies, musicThe Black Lives Matter Movement is shining a long overdue light on real black history.  The stuff we weren’t taught in schools. If you are looking to educate yourself on this topic, start with Walking with the Wind by John Lewis.

Lewis is one of America’s real heroes. His recent death is another reason to celebrate and honor his sacrifices and the work he did for the Civil Rights Movement. Once you get it, you can’t pretend that you don’t get it. #goodtrouble

Watch

Shark Week 2020 is almost here!  Sharks have been around for 100 million years, swimming the oceans while dinosaurs roamed the land. This annual favorite airs from August 9th – August 16th on the Discovery Channel. This season, the show explores the effects of Covid-19 on the oceans.

Marine biologist Dr. Sylvia Earle reminds us that sharks are beautiful animals. Lots of sharks mean you’re in a healthy ocean. You should only be afraid if you are in the ocean and don’t see sharks.

Listen

Stay Strong. On My Mind, July 2020Isolation creates unique ways of doing things and singing is no exception. Virtual choirs are the new internet sensation. In 2010, composer and conductor Eric Whitacre’s first choir combined185 singers from 12 countries. Ten years later, Virtual Choir 6 brings together 17,562 singers, aged 5 to 88, from 129 countries. Each singer uploaded videos that were processed and edited into Sing Gently. The human voice is the greatest of all instruments.

I’m wearing my mask and washing my hands. Be safe, stay healthy, and make some cookies.

This entry was posted in Books, Food and Cooking, Susanne Skinner, Television, Women Challenging Change and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , by Aline Kaplan. Bookmark the permalink.

About Aline Kaplan

Aline Kaplan is a published author, a blogger, and a tour guide in Boston. She formerly had a career as a high-tech marketing and communications director. Aline writes and edits The Next Phase Blog, a social commentary blog that appears multiple times a week at aknextphase.com. She has published over 1,000 posts on a variety of subjects, from Boston history to science fiction movies, astronomical events to art museums. Under the name Aline Boucher Kaplan, she has had two science fiction novels (Khyren and World Spirits) published by Baen Books. Her short stories have appeared in anthologies published in the United States, Ireland, and Australia. Aline’s articles have also appeared on the Atlas Obscura website. She has been an active member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America since 1988 and is a long-term member of the Spacecrafts science/fantasy writers’ group. As a tour guide, Aline leads architectural and historical walking tours of the city for Boston By Foot, ghost tours for Haunted Boston and historical bus tours of the city. She lectures on Boston history and has appeared in the Boston Globe, as well as on TV for Chronicle, an award-winning television program that broadcasts stories of New England. As a lecturer, Aline has spoken at Brandeis and Tufts universities for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. She has also addressed as service organizations and local meetings. She is a graduate of Northeastern University in Boston and lives in Hudson, MA.

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