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Americans love New Year’s resolutions because we are perpetual strivers obsessed with self-improvement.
- Anne Helen Petersen

My friend Alex replied to last week's email where I talked a bit about how resolutions focused on productivity can be kinda stressful, especially in all of the unpredictability going on around us. Anne Helen Petersen, she of the very relevant, 'Can't Even: How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation', wrote about resolutions in relation to capitalism in her latest newsletter.

It's definitely hard balancing things out. I want to make more of this newsletter in the coming year, but it feels like every side project has to be monetizable in some way to be worth the effort. I know that's not true, but the crush of capitalization doesn't seem to know that.

I appreciate yall sticking around with me, and I do want my random thoughts and links to reach more people! I have some experimentation ideas that I want to try out, including a physical media project in the works. If you know anyone who might be interested in this newsletter, please share with them. If you have anything to share, hit the reply button!

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dog-photography-audrey-bellot-1
Dogs, as photographed by Audrey Bellot, make me want to travel more than any influencer.

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How Work Became an Inescapable Hellhole - Anne Helen Petersen, Wired
Following up from the intro to this email, I want to surface a Wired article that Petersen wrote a few months ago, already several months into the working from home phase that many of us are lucky and unlucky enough to have. I've been doing it for years, and it's definitely changed with the rest of the house here as well, but we need to push back on letting work define our whole lives. Definitely myself included.

We’re all moving in together - Jenni Gritters, Experience
Speaking of the rest of the house, this is a good place to sneak in that we are having two new people in our home starting this week. It's gonna be a little crowded and I'm going to lose my private office which is a bit sad. But I'm glad to be closer to those that I love, and I'll invest in some noise canceling headphones.

WhatsApp gives users an ultimatum: Share data with Facebook or stop using the app - Dan Goodin, arstechnica
Facebook has been trying to find ways to make users want to keep giving them data that they had been collecting silently in the past, while cautioning businesses that their already terrible ad system is going to get even worse with iOS 14.

Twitch deletes PogChamp emote because it’s now the face of ‘further violence’ - Makenna Kelly, The Verge
I only learned about poggers within the past year, yet evidently it's been a thing for many before that. I didn't know anything about the guy behind it, so I can't say that I miss this confusing piece of internet culture. Oh no, I'm old.

Some Florida counties turned to Eventbrite to distribute vaccines. Then the fraudulent listings came - Sara Ashley O'Brien, CNN Business
Maybe we shouldn't use third party, private software that we don't have any control over to perform important public services?

Remembering MF DOOM—Masked Visionary, Rhyme-Bending Supervillain, and Hip-Hop Legend - Justin Sayles, The Ringer
MF DOOM was generally a private person behind the mask. So much to the point that he died in October and most of the world had no idea until his wife announced it online last week.

Brexit deal mentions Netscape browser and Mozilla Mail - Cristina Criddle, BBC
Ah yes, "modern e-mail software packages including Outlook, Mozilla Mail as well as Netscape Communicator 4.x.".

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screenshot of tweet from @Tettix that reads  It's Miyazaki's 80th birthday and because he loves us and wants us to be happy, Ghibli just release almost 2,000 hi-res images from their films for reasonable use. So get on that. https://ghibli.jp/info/013409/
Studio Ghibli films are those wonderful creations where every frame is a painting.

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David Wolfpaw (The Indieweb) | WPAMA #17
This week I talked to Allie Nimmons of WP Buffs about the IndieWeb movement. It was a bit intimidating having people who wrote the tools that I was talking about present in live chat, but I hope that I did them well.

Close Enough - "Turn down for What?"
Just gimme something silly for now. I enjoyed the first season of Close Enough as much as I enjoyed Regular Show before it.

HERO | A Furry Story FULL DOCUMENTARY from the creators of The Fandom.
Watching these creators use industrial sewing machines, 3D modeling and printers, along with all of the other cool tech at their disposal now makes me want to really get into hardcore maker crafting.

Sci-Fi Short Film: "High Score" | DUST
Communication through arcade games in a post apocalypse. Even at the end of the world, we want to be seen.

Pawn Stars: SUPER RARE Nintendo Demo System is a HIGH SCORE FIND (Season 18) | History
I watched this ONE VIDEO and now YouTube thinks that I want all Pawn Stars, all the time. It is a pretty cool piece of gaming history at least.

If Google Was a Guy: Quarantine Edition (Part 3)
The continuation of the Dropout series reminding us how dumb our searches are. The much better Part 1 and Part 2 are available here.

Wonder Woman 1984 Pitch Meeting
This movie was... not good. It was likely the most viewed DCEU movie to date, drawing subscribers to HBO Max with almost half of them watching it on Christmas Day. The first movie was one of the best in the franchise, but this one was simultaneously one of the longest films that I watched in the past year at 2 hours 31 minutes, and somehow felt like an episode of an hour-long television show.

Mr. Boop #217 [Finale]
Have you not experienced the long Twitter thread of comics over the past year that is Mr. Boop? Then this finale video will likely make almost no sense. Scratch that, it'll make no sense even if you've read the comics.

Why the liquids in Half-Life Alyx look so dang good
The fakery that gets liquids looking good in this game is kinda cool. It's certainly one way to spend downtime during quarantine.

screenshot of a tweet from @vamchale that says "mfs using machine learning like", with a TikTok video of someone putting blocks into a square hole in a toy
"You guessed it, arch goes in the square hole."

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cobalt rabbit - until the stars go out
Another new track from my friend cobalt rabbit. If anyone reading has contacts with game studios, they are looking for video game scoring work. I would love to play a chill game that they've done the music for!

COVID Long Haulers - 2 Girls 1 Podcast
Most people debating over masks and vaccines and everything else about COVID-19 are thinking about it as some binary event: you have it or you don't. Or you have it, then get over it, and now you don't. But there are a lot of people who got sick as far back as the start of the pandemic that are still experiencing life-altering symptoms. It's not "just like the flu", and the lack of seriousness that some people give it is infuriating.

The History of Civilization (the Game) with Sid Meier - Factually! with Adam Conover
Few game designers have the recognition as Sid Meier. I've never actually played his games, but I appreciate the style of gameplay that he builds.

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screenshot from @mslopatto that reads "2020: fuck around 2021: FIND OUT"
So who's ready to find out in 2021?