Friday, April 20, 2012

April 20th, outsourced

I really enjoyed reading the list of rejected titles for Ken Jennings' new book about debunking parental myths.

Was anyone else weirded out by the fact that the NYT ran a really positive, really accurate piece about Mormon missionary work? I don't know if the author of the article had previous familiarity with Mormon missionaries, but he did a good job conveying the essence of the thing in not too many words.

Do you live in a bubble? I probably broke the survey since I don't think it's meant to be taken overseas, but I got a 36 when I considered the places we've lived in the US. [HT MFB]

There are problems with the assumptions of some of the sources of this infographic, but it is still really interesting: What are the hardest languages to learn?

Another informative poster, on how to treat an introvert. [HT Jeremy]

Here's a beautiful article (from Dialogue) about what it means to be a Mormon and a feminist, from none other than Laurel Thatcher Ulrich. [HT Cait]

OH MY GOSH, I think I've experienced every single one of these. The "can you tie my shoe?" requests while I'm driving the car baffle me every time.

Making men walk a mile in high-heeled women's shoes to raise awareness about sexual violence toward women is a neat idea. It will also teach them the lesser lesson of what a pain it is to walk in high-heeled shoes. [HT Kathy]

Some really great pranks went down while I was a student at the BYU. I'm glad YouTube is around now so we can enjoy watching an especially elaborate prank.


Jill said...

I took that bubble quiz a few days ago and got a 33. Some of those questions are stupid. Fishing? Beer?

Bridget said...

...and voluntarily hanging out with a group of people who are smoking?

Suzanne Bubnash said...

Yeah, a 33. Not enough beer and cigs in my life.

Liz Johnson said...

I got a 29. Sad. At least I knew who Jimmie Johnson was.

My favorite is when my kids ask me to carry their papers when my arms are full of a kid and groceries. NO. And I'm irritated that they even asked.

I had seen that NYTimes article about missionaries linked everywhere, but I finally read it. One quibble - is this calling the companionship "Mother" and "Father" a new thing? What the what? I'd never heard of that.

The Laurel Thatcher Ulrich article was fabulous.

Bridget said...

Yeah, the mother and father companion thing was the one part that didn't ring true to me. Maybe it's new. Or maybe it's just that particular area.

JosephJ said...

35. Not as redneck as I thought I was. Also, I'm trying to be more compassionate with my introvert friends.

Thanks for the list!

Susanne said...

45 on the bubble quiz. I wonder if it counts if the long-distance bus ride that I took was from Nuremberg to Prague. Not exactly Greyhound since the bus was run by DB (nice!), but then I did travel from home to NYC on a tour bus one time as well.

I like the hardest languages graphic. Lots of great links this week. I will read some of the others later. I'm interested in the Mormon missionary and feminist ones especially. thanks

Jennifer said...

23. Wow, really?

Interesting missionary article. I've heard of missionaries calling their trainer "father" in a very colloquial sense, but never heard of "mother" for second companion. Just goes to show that each mission has its own "culture" I guess.

Kathy Haynie said...

40. My childhood was working class, so that raised my score. I almost never watch TV, so that lowered it a little. The only movie I could check was "True Grit," and that was the original version that came out when I was a teen. I thought the "bubble indicators" were actually pretty interesting. If I had completed my visiting teaching route last month, I could have checked the box about voluntarily hanging out with people who smoke.

I loved the essay by Laurel Ulrich, and appreciated the link to the NYT article. Thank you.

I'm amazed that no one has mentioned the BYU prank video in the comments yet. Mark and I couldn't stop laughing...laughed till we cried...maybe we're just old? Or tired? But it definitely brightened up our Friday evening. Thank you for an outstanding "Outsourced" post today!

Jenn said...

28 - Spending most of the last 2 years in Italy didn't help my scores (and being back in the Bay Area for 6 months? also no help). I haven't watched any TV or movies, and I don't think DeutscheBahn counts on the bus route question. Also, I haven't eaten at Waffle House since I moved out of Alabama in 2007, but I'm going to a Chili's next week to meet a friend, so...?

Either way, it's probably a fair score. Isn't moving abroad the epitome of upper-middle-classdom? And while it gets us out in the world, we simultaneously create our own, unique bubble.

Finding My Way Softly said...

I got a 69 on the bubble score. Not sure if that is good or not since everyone else seems to have lower scores, at least the scores posted in comments.

Susanne said...

I think a higher score means you aren't in your own bubble, but more mainstream. Not anything bad at all especially when some in the country are hellbent on dividing people by class (money, whatever).

Hardest Language Graphic -- I was curious how English would rank on this if it were made by people who speak other languages. Do any of you have an idea about which people find English especially hard (or is it always medium or easy)? Would it simply be the same as this chart only backward (i.e. Chinese, Arabs, Japanese would find English much more difficult than Russians and French.) I'm guessing so. When I asked this on Facebook without putting the *hardest for ENGLISH speakers* (slight oops), some of my friends thought English would be among the hardest languages to learn because our phonics rules don't always work. But my Arab friend says English is easy and German is harder. He says he is always waiting for that verb to come around since Germans put it at the end of their sentences.

Also, I was reading a book recently by Masha Gessen about her two Jewish grandmothers who lived in Russia. One had a knack for learning languages so she was employed as a censor at one point. When telling her story to Masha, she made the comment that learning English, French, Czech and more were fairly easy for her, but noted how very difficult Hungarian was. Like she could barely remember one phrase of it. Now I'm curious if it has some weird structure that makes it this way.

I read the Mormon missionary story this morning. I see them occasionally over here, but have never had them come by the house. I do always get a good impression of them (and Mormons in general except the ones on reality TV shows), and I totally got the reasoning in the article about not listening to certain types of music while on your mission. There's just something about certain music that is so anti-missionary activity. I can't see myself wanting to tell people about Jesus after singing certain songs.

I did learn a few things like I didn't realize Mormons didn't use crosses. I'm pretty sure you believe in the crucifixion and its importance, but maybe you just aren't into icons and symbols of death. Well, I can understand that. I've heard people say we should have necklaces with empty graves instead of crosses.

The feminist article was OK. I know nothing of that lady so it wasn't as impressive to me as it probably was to you. I found another article on Salon that reminded me of some of the Mormon blogs I read and/or skim.

Finding My Way Softly said...

As Mormons we definitely believe in the crucifixion. We tend to focus on the Lord, as our resurrected Savior. We believe He is alive and still leading His church today. We certainly learn about the suffering in Gethsemane that made the Atonement possible.

Finding My Way Softly said...

(Okay, not sure why the second paragraph of the previous comment got cut off.)

We spend a lot time and energy learning about, and trying the follow, the examples of Christ, His Prophets and His Apostles. We believe that the truths of the gospel and living in a way consistent with them is the best way for us to honor the Savior. So, while we don't ignore that Christ died on the cross, we prefer to concentrate on His life and teachings in our daily lives.

Britney said...

That NYT article WAS positive. What a breath of fresh air. Thanks for sharing.


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