Truly Random Thoughts, Volume 4: Alice, Anne, Money & Science

This week shows how truly “random” are the things that catch my eye/ear online.  No common thread,  just lots of interesting things to ponder.

Memory Eternal: The Life and Quiet  Ministry of “Ann B.” –Terry Mattingly, Get Religion.  I love “Get Religion”–I don’t recall it as a Patheos blog.  Perhaps that is new?   Lovely story about the religious life of Ann Davis, better known as The Brady Bunch’s “Alice,” who died this week.

Raising a Moral Child-The New York Times.  “People often believe that character causes action, but when it comes to producing moral children, we need to remember that action also shapes character. ”

A New Way to Declutter--Anne at I Need Some Inspiration.  So super glad this real-life friend she has a blog now, finally.  Anne, you just need to put an e-mail button so I can subscribe that way.  Not that I don’t have so many e-mails, but for some reason, it is a way I catch up (at least occasionally) on my favorite blogs.  I felt “inspired” by this post to tackle our own basement, which looks suspiciously like the one in the photo, except not as spacious.

 Is College Worth It? Clearly, New Data Say –– The New York Times

“We have too few college graduates…we have too few prepared for college.”

“Those who question the value of college tend to be those with the luxury of knowing their own children will be able to attend it.”  Hmm.

“Young and Debt-Free!” — Jill and Jeremy Tracey, WCIC-FM.  I found this mini-interview–about a young couple who paid off $42,000 in student loan debt in two years– inspiring and challenging in a good way.  The couple used the Dave Ramsey principles to pay off their debt on super low incomes, and it just shows it can be done . I read Smart Money Smart Kids: Raising the Next Generation to Win with Money, the newest Dave Ramsey book (from the library, natch).  I find his approach interesting–for me, it’s not the “be all and end all” on financial health, but he does have good things to say about living within your means, especially for people who have gotten into serious debt.  The book itself was a little padded, and could have worked better as a much shorter read.  I am making a note to write a post along these lines–there really “ought” to be a Catholic book for young people about financial literacy and  stewardship, and there isn’t.

“Spiritual and Secular Mix in Case for Sainthood” –New York Times.  “Saints are intercessors in heaven, but they’re also models to emulate. They live lives of heroic virtue. So the idea is to have as many models as possible.” I reviewed the book The Miracle of Father Kapaun last year– it was a very compelling read.

“Why You Hate Work” The New York Times. Such interesting info graphics here. One great quote: “THE simplest way for companies to take on this challenge is to begin with a basic question: ‘What would make our employees feel more energized, better taken care of, more focused and more inspired?’ It costs nothing, for example, to mandate that meetings run no longer than 90 minutes, or to set boundaries around when people are expected to answer email and how quickly they’re expected to respond. ”

“Why Science and the Humanities are Better Together” –NPR Science Friday. I listened to this podcast on a run recently, and I found it fascinating and informative.  Walter Isaacson is interviewed here about giving the prestigious Jefferson Lecture, and how he recalls going to see Walker Percy give the lecture more than 20 years ago.  Since my husband is a big fan of Walker Percy, and met him on several occasions, Isaacson’s admiration and homage to Percy in his own lecture was compelling to me.  I hope to listen to the entire lecture soon.

What have you been reading or listening to this week?

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