“Picking five favorite books is like picking the five body parts you’d most like not to lose.”
― Neil Gaiman
This week is Creative Maladjustment Week; recognizing, honoring, and celebrating the creatively maladjusted worldwide. This is a project of MindFreedom International, a nonprofit organization that unites hundreds of grassroots groups with thousands of individual members to create a non-violent revolution in mental health care and win human rights and alternatives in the mental health field and beyond. With 25+ years of successful activism under its belt, MindFreedom remains one of the only financially independent groups in its field with NO funding from or control by governments, drug companies, religions, corporations, or the mental health system.MindFreedom relies on the individual support of members and allies who support its campaigns and efforts.
What is Creative Maladjustment? Martin Luther King, Jr. once said: “There are some things in our world to which I’m proud to be maladjusted,” and that “The salvation of the world lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.” MindFreedom believe he was right. There are many things in society that we should not adjust to, but rather work to change. Creative maladjustment is about learning to be disciplined non-conformist, to be maladjusted in a positive and constructive way to what you believe is harmful in our society. By being creatively maladjusted, we can help to make positive change in the world! Each day of this week has a theme. For each of these days, the creatively maladjusted worldwide will be staging protests, events, and celebrations, and throughout the week, honoring the creatively maladjusted among us, giving awards to inspiring activists from around the world. Today is Day of Creativity. What ways can you think of to put your creativity to positive, non-violent use? Check out cmweek.org for more about today’s theme.
Father-Daughter Take a Walk Together Day is celebrated every July 7th, just in time to get outside and enjoy the wonderful weather with loved ones. On this special day fathers and daughters of all ages are encouraged to spend time together enjoying their natural surroundings. And with the health benefits associated with walking, and emotional and psychological benefits of family bonding time, it’s a wonder we need a special holiday to remind us to get out there and move!
Today every American is challenged to go one whole day without telling a lie or saying anything misleading or dishonest. Imagine a world where nobody lies, says anything misleading, or does anything dishonest. Tell The Truth Day aims to achieve this for just one day – presumably to allow people the rest of the year to get over insult, hurt and the result of truths which perhaps should have remained un-said!
Today is Chocolate Day! This is the perfect opportunity to eat your favorite chocolates in ample portions. Chocolate is America’s favorite flavor. It’s the flavor of choice in candies, ice cream, cakes, breakfast cereal, toppings, and a whole host of desserts. Unequaled in popularity, it certainly deserves a day in it’s honor. Did you know? Chocolate is a vegetable. It comes from the Cacao tree found in rainforests.
How about a strawberry sundae with all that chocolate? National Strawberry Sundae Day, today, is your opportunity to indulge yourself in this delicious dessert. Strawberries are one of America’s favorite fruits. When the strawberries ripen each year, it’s time to celebrate. Many communities hold strawberry festivals to celebrate the harvest. At the festivals, strawberries take center stage. They are in the ingredients of hundreds of recipes. Did you know that strawberries are not true berries? Scientists classify a berry as a simple fruit whose seeds and pulp are produced by a single ovary. The strawberry does not fulfill this definition, but this fact doesn’t stop people from enjoying it!
Speaking of berries, July is National Blueberries Month. What is so special about them? Well, to begin with, these berries are grown throughout a good percentage of the United States. Over 90% of all of the blueberries in the world are produced in our country, in thirty-five states. And the nutritional value of blueberries cannot be beat by any other fruit or vegetable. Blueberries are full of antioxidants, which have been scientifically proven to help reduce the risk of certain cancers and heart disease. They are also excellent sources of vitamins A and C, as well as potassium, folic acid, and fiber. Plus, they are low in calories-one cup of berries is only about 80 calories. And were you aware that blueberries are virtually fat-free, cholesterol-free, and sodium-free?
Starting today we are reducing our price on a 330 page paperback by Peter Hitchens called The Abolition of Britain: From Winston Churchill to Princess Diana. We have one new copy available. Amazon gives the following description:
A surprise best seller in England, The Abolition of Britain is bitingly witty and fiercely argued, yet also filled with somber appreciation for what “the idea of England” has always meant to the West and to the world at large. One English critic called The Abolition of Britain “an elegant jeremiad” in which Peter Hitchens identifies everything that has gone wrong with Britain since World War II and makes the case for “those many millions who feel that they have become foreigners in their own land and wish with each succeeding day that they could turn the clock back.” Writing with passion and flair, Hitchens targets the pernicious effects of TV culture, the “corruption and decay” of the English language, the loss of politeness, and the “syrupy confessional mood” brought on by the death of Diana, which Hitchens contrasts with the somber national response to the death of Winston Churchill. If there is a term that summarizes everything that has gone wrong in Britain, it is “Tony Blairism,” which Hitchens sees as having rewritten England’s history, trivialized its journalism, subverted its educational system and cultural standards, and overthrown accepted notions of patriotism, faith, and morality. The New Britain is government by focus group in which people are told what to feel as a way of preventing them from asking how they want to be governed. Looking at the changed face of his country, Hitchens finds a “politically correct zeal for the new” whose impact on daily life has been “as devastating in effect, if not in violence, as Mao tse Tung’s Cultural Revolution in China.”
On July 7, 1990, the World wide web was born when Tim Berners-Lee, a researcher at CERN, developed the HyperText Markup Language, which would later be called HTML.
Some of the writers born July 7th include:
Ludwig Ganghofer (1855), Lion Feuchtwanger (1884), Miroslav Krleža (1893), Robert A. Heinlein (1907), Revilo P. Oliver (1908), Margaret Walker (1915), Hasan Abidi (1929), David Eddings (1931), David McCullough (1933), Joel Siegel (1943), Howard Rheingold (1947), Eric Jerome Dickey (1961), Neil Tobin (1966), Jeff VanderMeer (1968), and Ana Kasparian (1986).
We remember two authors today on the anniversary of their passing.
Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle was a Scottish physician and writer who is most noted for his fictional stories about the detective Serlock Holmes, which are generally considered milestones in the field of crime fiction. He is also known for writing the fictional adventures of a second character he invented, Professor Challenger. He was a prolific writer whose other works include fantasy and science fiction stories, plays, romances, poetry, non-fiction, and historical novels. Arthur Conan Doyle was born May 22, 1859. While studying medicine he began writing short stories. He began writing a lot while waiting for his medical practice to take off. Doyle struggled to find a publisher for his work. His first significant piece, A Study in Scarlet, was taken by Ward Lock & Co in November 1886. The piece appeared later that year in the Beeton’s Christmas Annual and received good reviews. The story featured the first appearance of Watson and Sherlock Holmes. A sequel to A Study in Scarlet was commissioned and The Sign of the Four appeared in Lippincott’s Magazine in February 1890, under agreement with the Ward Lock company. Doyle felt grievously exploited by Ward Lock as an author new to the publishing world and he left them. In 1885 Conan Doyle married Louisa (or Louise) Hawkins, known as ‘Touie’, the sister of one of his patients. She suffered from tuberculosis and died July 4, 1906. The next year he married Jean Elizabeth Leckie, whom he had first met and fallen in love with in 1897. Jean died on June 27, 1940. Conan Doyle fathered five children: two with his first wife and three with his second wife. In December 1893, in order to dedicate more of his time to what he considered his more important works (his historical novels), Conan Doyle had Holmes and Professor Moriarty apparently plunge to their deaths together down the Reichenbach Falls in the story “The Final Problem”. Public outcry, however, led him to bring the character back in 1901, in The Hound of the Baskervilles, though this was set at a time before the Reichenbach incident. Following the death of his wife Louisa in 1906, the death of his son Kingsley just before the end of World War I, and the deaths of his brother Innes, his two brothers-in-law and his two nephews shortly after the war, Conan Doyle sank into depression. He found solace supporting spiritualism and its attempts to find proof of existence beyond the grave. In particular, according to some, he favoured Christian Spiritualism and encouraged the Spiritualists’ National Union to accept an eighth precept – that of following the teachings and example of Jesus of Nazareth. He also was a member of the renowned supernatural organisation The Ghost Club. Its focus, then and now, is on the scientific study of alleged supernatural activities in order to prove (or refute) the existence of supernatural phenomena. Conan Doyle was friends for a time with Harry Houdini, the American magician who himself became a prominent opponent of the Spiritualist movement in the 1920s. Houdini was apparently unable to convince Conan Doyle that his feats were simply illusions, leading to a bitter public falling out between the two. Conan Doyle was found clutching his chest in the hall of his house in Crowborough, East Sussex, on July 7, 1930. He died of a heart attack at the age of 71. His last words were directed toward his wife: “You are wonderful.” At the time of his death, there was some controversy concerning his burial place, as he was avowedly not a Christian, considering himself a Spiritualist. He was first buried on July 11, 1930 in Windlesham rose garden. He was later reinterred together with his wife in Minstead churchyard in the New Forest, Hampshire.
Julie Campbell Tatham was born June 1, 1908. She was a US writers of children’s novels, who also wrote for adults, especially on Christian Science. On March 30, 1933, she married Charles Tatham Jr, and had two sons. In the 1940s, she created under her maiden name two series for Whitman Publishing Co, the Ginny Gordon series and the popular Trixie Belden series, continued by other writers under the pseudonym Kathryn Kenny. Under her married name, she also wrote some books of Helen Wells’s series: Cherry Ames and Vicki Barr. Julie Tatham died on July 7, 1999 in Alexandria, Virginia, at the age of 91.
Much of the information in this blog is taken directly from Wikipedia, Amazon, and other sources such as holidayinsights.com, which are directly linked to within the text. Images have been taken from various sources found via Facebook, Goodsearch.com and Google.
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