Weekend Link Roundup

Made with Pitu, which offers a number of CNY-themed filters

Meitu is a Chinese photo editing app that went public in Hong Kong back in December. I am a fan of many photo-editing apps, and will give most trendy ones a whirl (remember Prisma?) And Chinese beauty apps are truly peerless in perpetuating selfie culture. If you are into Meitu, you might also enjoy Pitu (same idea, different filters). But before you download these apps, consider the data they collect.

▪ Speaking of tech IPOs, Snap Inc. is preparing to debut in New York this year. Stories about its IPO are generally pretty boring, with the exception of one story about how the NYSE and Nasdaq went about competing for Snap’s business. It brought me joy.

ASOS is having its final clearance event (note that it’s different from final sale). I’ve had pretty good luck shopping this sale in the last few weeks. What I kept: Oh My Love Off Shoulder Bow Dress, City Goddess Bardot Midi Dress With Bow Detail, Oh My Love Off The Shoulder Mini Dress With Bow, ASOS PETITE Jersey Off Shoulder Bardot Wrap Romper, and ASOS Jersey Jumpsuit with Cowl Neck and Long Sleeves.

▪ If I have more free time on my hands, I can see myself becoming a full-fledged “prepper.” When extremely bored with few distractions, I sometimes daydream about how I could best evacuate the room that I occupy if zombies were to fall through the ceiling. With this said, it was discomforting to read “Doomsday Prep for the Super-Rich“; If anyone personally knows a member of private Facebook groups formed by Super-Rich survivalists, please ask them to add me

▪ Donald Trump’s successful presidential bid has emboldened a new class of aspiring politicians: rich people. Billionaire technocrats Peter Thiel and Mark Zuckerberg are rumored to be exploring runs for office in 2020.

▪ The Bloomingdale’s clearance sale is dangerous. There are 75%(+) off cashmere sweaters and dresses. If you don’t want to buy anything, don’t browse this sale. I bought some sweaters (this, this, and this) that I absolutely don’t need, but I am sure I’ll eventually wear them. 

▪ “The Strange Persistence of First Languageschronicles a writer’s journey to reconnect with her first language following her father’s death. I really like the metaphor she developed, liking being multilingual to having finite resources: …embracing the dominant language comes at a price. Like a household that welcomes a new child, a single mind can’t admit a new language without some impact on other languages already residing there. Languages can co-exist, but they tussle, as do siblings, over mental resources and attention. When a bilingual person tries to articulate a thought in one language, words and grammatical structures from the other language often clamor in the background, jostling for attention. The subconscious effort of suppressing this competition can slow the retrieval of words—and if the background language elbows its way to the forefront, the speaker may resort to code-switching, plunking down a word from one language into the sentence frame of another.  Meanwhile, the weaker language is more likely to become swamped; when resources are scarce, as they are during mental exhaustion, the disadvantaged language may become nearly impossible to summon. Over time, neglecting an earlier language makes it harder and harder for it to compete for access.” It’s a fairly long, but worthwhile, read.

▪ This Bloomberg piece about Uber drivers sheds light on some of the inconveniences of working in a gig economy; these Uber drivers’ struggles are not unique or new, but for how disruptive and innovative Uber claims to be, it hasn’t meaningfully elevated the lives of its employees (or contractors, or whatever Uber calls its drivers).

▪ It’s sale on sale time: sale styles are still an extra 60% off at Ann Taylor; LOFT is also discounting its sale styles by 60%; clearance styles are up to 75% off at Neiman Marcus; And sale styles are an extra 50% off at Banana Republic.

Every few months or so, a new article (or two) about how boredom can be positive would surface, and I would look askance at conclusions drawn like “boredom, it turns out, may be super-interesting.” Boredom is not super interesting. As a serially bored person, I can attest that, yes, be bored enough and you will eventually be compelled to think, but whatever ideas or actions you take to combat boredom aren’t necessary productive, or even good. In fact, this article seems to confuse boredom with downtime, which is a completely different beast.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average broke 20000 points for the first time ever (this is contested) on Wednesday, and some people cheered (yay round numbers?) Others were unimpressed (rightfully so, imo). I mean, just read about how the Dow is calculated (essentially, add up the closing prices of the 30 Dow stocks—picked by a WSJ committee—and divide the total by the Dow “divisor,” or 0.14602128057775). We won’t even get into how, somewhere along the line, some bad math happened and the calculations have been off ever since

▪  All sale styles at Mark and Graham are an extra 35% off with code EXTRA35. My picks: Travel Watch/Bracelet Storage, Colorfield Weekender Bag, Lanyard Hitch Collection Bracelet, Suede Turnlock Bracelet, Anchor Jewelry Holder, and Leather Saddle Bag.

▪ There are some three million people in the U.S. who report having peanut and tree nut allergies (according to FARE, which is a special interest group), but my impression of how accommodating airlines are to people with food allergies was based entirely on the few instances during which in-flight announcements were made that peanuts wouldn’t be served because someone with severe allergies was on board. According to this New York Times article, these accommodations are rarer than you’d think, and that those with severe nut allergies who inform flight attendants of their condition are often turned away. Airlines’ hesitation to accommodate passengers with dietary restrictions stand in stark contrast to cruises and hotels, many of whom have specialized to cater to those with a special diet.

▪ Recently purchased: Clinique Crayola™ Chubby Lip Crayon Box, Tangle Teezer Hello Kitty x Tangle Teezer Compact Styler, Le Creuset Classic Whistling Tea Kettle, and Burberry Cashmere Wrap Trench Coat.

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