Welcome to this week’s edition of our Friday Quality Linkage column. Please enjoy this week’s collection of interesting and entertaining links. Brew a fresh cup of coffee, find a comfortable place, and relax.
One week ago, the same day I published last Friday’s linkage column and couldn’t process the shocking news in time to write anything about it, celebrity food journalist Anthony Bourdain took his own life. As far as I’m aware he left no note to explain himself, and I’m not sure it matters because none of us can go back and change it, and it probably wouldn’t make us feel any better about it.
It’s hard to quantify how much of an effect Bourdain had on the worlds of food and travel. He inspired cooks, writers, storytellers, and wanderlusters of all stripes, fearlessly and passionately showing us all what the world has to offer, good or bad. Through his lens, we got to experience faraway cultures in ways we could only imagine doing on our own, and he did it regularly.
So, rather than focusing on whatever must have been ailing him enough inside to make that fateful decision last week, let’s take a look at the beautiful things people had to say about the man, starting with this one:
That’s the real and miraculous here. There are people who can see the world in all its poverty and sorrow. But there are so few who recognize themselves in it and of it, and fewer still who invite it in to sit down, to eat, and to have a few minutes of peace and appreciation at the eternal, drunken forgiving present of a dinner table. Anthony Bourdain did — and most generously, tried to show everyone else how to do it, too.
This one is mostly sad, but I loved this bit:
The first time we ever met, it was because he wrote something I didn’t like, then I wrote something he didn’t like, and then he rained holy hellfire down on me on Twitter and I was terrified. But I didn’t back down and he seemed to like that. Mutual friends told us both that we were on the same side, even if we didn’t know it, and when I finally met him in person, he leaned down—God, he was a tall man—and said, “We’re going to be friends.” And then suddenly we really were on the same side.
His side was on that of people who work in restaurants. He loved dishwashers, porters, barbacks, bartenders, line cooks, prep cooks, sous chefs, and the fancy ones with their name over the door. And I stand there proudly with him.
And this one couldn’t be truer:
But for all his steadfast positions on everything from scrambled eggs to Guy Fieri, he held one belief, unwaveringly: He wanted to make the world a more inclusive place. He implored people — Americans, specifically — to give their comfort zones a well-deserved “f*** off.” He embraced and celebrated the humanity present in every culture, in every region, in every hole-in-the-wall noodle shop in Singapore or Michelin starred restaurant in Pairs, equally. He poured enough life into his 61 years on this earth to inspire a generation to travel with passion. To eat with an appetite. To drink with a stranger. To love, to swear, to sweat, and above all, connect with our fellow human beings.
Here are some good tweets:
Anthony Bourdain had one of the only shows on tv that tried with all its might to teach Americans not to be scared of other people.— Allison F.🦉 (@ablington) June 8, 2018
One cool thing Bourdain hammered home was that poor people's food culture is dominant. The food every culture is known for is it's working class food, and that's true everywhere all the time. There was a joyfulness in that. Life might suck, but we got tacos— Mark Agee (@MarkAgee) June 8, 2018
Bourdain never treated our food like he "discovered" it. He kicked it with grandma because he knew that HE was the one that needed to catch up to our brilliance.— Jenny Yang 👲🏼👲🏼👲🏼 (@jennyyangtv) June 8, 2018
I wish so much for his legacy to take hold in western (mostly white) food media culture. What a loss. I'm so sad.
thinking a lot about fred rogers and bourdain and man, you can be a force for good in this world. you can be incredible by just being so damn kind. this site and the world constantly asks "what have you accomplished"— Joshua Rivera (@jmrivera02) June 8, 2018
"I tried to be kind" is a good enough answer.
And here are his own words, excerpted:
“I consider one of my few virtues — I don’t have a lot of them — but one of them would be a deep sense of curiosity,” Mr. Bourdain told Mother Jones magazine in 2010. “It’s inconceivable why anyone would want to not experience as many colors in the spectrum as possible with our limited time on Earth.”
R.I.P. Mr. Bourdain.
I’m glad one of those tweets above mentioned Fred Rogers, because that leads right to the next link I wanted to share. Maxwell King, author of the forthcoming book, The Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers, wrote an article for The Atlantic about the very intentional way Mister Rogers spoke to children, which his writers dubbed “Freddish”:
“State the idea you wish to express as clearly as possible, and in terms preschoolers can understand.” Example: It is dangerous to play in the street.
“Rephrase in a positive manner,” as in It is good to play where it is safe.
“Rephrase the idea, bearing in mind that preschoolers cannot yet make subtle distinctions and need to be redirected to authorities they trust.” As in, “Ask your parents where it is safe to play.”
“Rephrase your idea to eliminate all elements that could be considered prescriptive, directive, or instructive.” In the example, that’d mean getting rid of “ask”: Your parents will tell you where it is safe to play.
“Rephrase any element that suggests certainty.” That’d be “will”: Your parents can tell you where it is safe to play.
“Rephrase your idea to eliminate any element that may not apply to all children.” Not all children know their parents, so: Your favorite grown-ups can tell you where it is safe to play.
“Add a simple motivational idea that gives preschoolers a reason to follow your advice.” Perhaps: Your favorite grown-ups can tell you where it is safe to play. It is good to listen to them.
“Rephrase your new statement, repeating the first step.” “Good” represents a value judgment, so: Your favorite grown-ups can tell you where it is safe to play. It is important to try to listen to them.
“Rephrase your idea a ﬁnal time, relating it to some phase of development a preschooler can understand.” Maybe: Your favorite grown-ups can tell you where it is safe to play. It is important to try to listen to them, and listening is an important part of growing.
Why yes, I am taking notes for my own parenting purposes, thank you very much.
Sean McCabe of seanwes tv:
While many people think being an introvert must mean we don’t like people, it’s really just that we get energy in a different way than extroverts. […] It simply means that when it comes to being “on” (like when you need to talk to people or make videos), that is something that takes energy for us introverts.
So how do you make videos consistently when you just don’t feel like it?
Good tips in the video above. As a deep-seated introvert myself, I appreciate that he doesn’t self-indulge in the whole, “Oh, I’m so introverted I can’t ever speak to people” thing and handles the topic honestly and with clarity.
The people I admire the most are the ones who are best at keeping in mind that everything you make is an engine.
What I mean by that is that anything you make – a podcast, a book, a TV show, a business, really any endeavor that you undertake – is not just the thing it is, but it’s also an engine that powers, directly or indirectly, other things and other people.
This girl’s skills are ludicrous. As Andy Richter so eloquently put it, “STOP RIGHT NOW AND EXPERIENCE JOY”
Alexis C. Madrigal of The Atlantic writes of the ongoing disappearance of telephone culture:
Not picking up the phone would be like someone knocking at your door and you standing behind it not answering. It was, at the very least, rude, and quite possibly sneaky or creepy or something.
No one picks up the phone anymore. Even many businesses do everything they can to avoid picking up the phone. Of the 50 or so calls I received in the last month, I might have picked up four or five times. The reflex of answering—built so deeply into people who grew up in 20th-century telephonic culture—is gone.
He then goes on to explain why he thinks this is happening (spoiler: it’s robocalls).
Neat Stuff We Published This Week
- Guide: “Everyday Carry: Aircraft Grade”
- Coffee grinder for your office or retail space: Mahlkonig EK43 Commercial Coffee Grinder
- Keep your things orderly and easy to access: Petutu Clear Mesh Zipper Pouches (Pack of 8)
- Roast hot dogs and marshmallows with ease: Rolla Roaster Campfire Roasting Forks
- Take the thinking out of “What’s for dinner?”: Mealime Meal-Planning App
Got any suggestions for articles, videos, stories, photographs, and any other links you think we should be posting in our weekly Quality Linkage? Please do let us know on Twitter.