October 13, 2021

🎶 Come with me and you'll see...


Happy Wednesday! This is typically the part of the email where I would wish you a Happy ______ Day, but there are so many random holidays being observed today that it was tough to whittle things down to the One Lesser Holiday to Rule Them All™.

National Fossil Day? Sure, the petrified remains of our primordial forebears are very metal (as well as scientifically valuable), but if they're so great how come they're dead?

National Stop Bullying Day? A worthy cause, but it also implies that the other 364 days of the year are open season on scrawny misfits. The messaging could use some work.

Ada Lovelace Day? No doubt; we wouldn't be communicating with each other via these hot wizard pocket computers without Ms Lovelace's contributions to computational and algorithmic theory.

Emergency Nurses Day? Absolutely! Especially in this current climate of epidemiological idiocy. You da real MVPs, emergency nurses!

International Skeptics Day, though? Why even bother? It's not like they'll believe anything you say to them, even in celebration.

Ah...here it is; the holiday we've been waiting for. Happy International Day for Failure!

Dwight Schrute knows that failure of any kind is still failure.

Me, scrolling through an endless cascade of Pollyanna-ish GIFs touting the importance of "trying" and the acceptability of failure.

The International Day for Failure started as an initiative by students at Aalto University in Finland to encourage more Finnish citizens to take a chance on their ideas and start small businesses! This is because Finland culturally abhors failure, and this internalized fear was preventing the creation of small business start-ups and hampering economic development.

I've got good news and bad news:

The Bad: failure still sucks, and fear thereof is well-founded!

The Good: Fear of failure, when properly channeled, can lead to better decision making and success!


Alright, let's eat some birthday cake!

• Happy birthday to actor, comedian, writer, and producer Sacha Baron Cohen, born this day in 1971! Very niiice.

• An emphatic "damn, Gina!" to actress Tisha Campbell, born this day in 1968!

• Prepare a tequila-soaked cupcake for the Red Rocker himself, Sammy Hagar, born this day in 1947! I hear he struggles with observing the posted speed limit.

• Finally, a harmonious birthday celebration is in order for singer/songwriter Paul Simon, born this day in 1941! If you're struggling to extricate yourself from a bad relationship, he has 50 suggestions on how to do so.

Finally, let's get to the main course — fun links to brighten your day!

1. All about those sweet, sweet capybara memes.

I will readily jump at any chance to look at pix and vids of cute critters like capybaras, but I think the funniest part of this video is the fact that the content creator behind this video refers to himself as "Meme Daddy."

2. Speaking of cute animal vids and timely October content...

...let's all appreciate this adorable supercut of Oregon Zoo residents getting into the spirit of Spooky Season by smashing/eating/playing with pumpkins!

3. Modern art makes Maisie the guinea pig rock out!

OK, I know that not all of the fine art parodies in Maisie's "Piggenheim" Museum tour would be considered modern in the strictest sense of how modern art is defined, but I'm not about to let an opportunity to reference Art Brut's 'Modern Art Makes Me Want to Rock Out' go by. Plus Maisie is adorable!

4. Let's all ponder the inevitable extinction of humanity and how pointless our goings-on are in the cosmic scheme of things!

Photographer Romain Veillon documents the elegant decay of man-made nonsense in his work, which you can admire on his Instagram! To paraphrase Cogsworth from Disney's Beauty and the Beast, "if it's Baroque and in tatters, you probably should fix it."

5. Take this job and...love it?

Remember the halcyon days of the early aughts internet, when it seemed comprised solely of cat memes, Flash cartoons, and low-quality file sharing sites? Nowadays it's just a very slick-looking oligarchic consortium of echo chambers designed to monetize human outrage. Thanks a lot, Ada Lovelace! #CallBack

Thankfully, this Twitter thread actually got happy employees (what are those?) to share where they work, what they do, and what they love about their jobs.

Willy Wonka: "Must be nice."

OK! Hopefully these little diversions helped to brighten your day! We'll be back here in your inbox on Friday with NEW ART, more random holidays, celebrity birthdays, a new episode of the Boredwalk Podcast, and (probably) more! Until then...

Peace, love, and failure,