Discover more from Cruel Summer Book Club
Cruel Compendium #58 🦭
Dive into delulu, creative grief, and the wild wild web
Today, after five weeks away, I’m finally back home in Austin.
I’m so excited to see my cats and sit on my couch and watch my trash TV. Unfortunately, I’m returning to the 100-degree heat as well. Here’s to six more weeks of summer in Texas! 🥲
Last week, I wrote about how important it is to go where you are wanted. So many people love you for who you are—go to them.
Check out my recs in the platonic love newsletter, which included a golden Tarot deck, my favorite endless lint roller, one of my all-time favorite comedy sets, and more. And ICYMI, Aja and Aliza shared their obsessions in the last Compendium.
On to the links!
What I’m reading
Will this enlarge me or diminish me? By Austin Kleon
Something I think about often when trying to make good, big, daring choices for myself. I’m also still trying to make a daily appointment with myself to sit down and write.
Exploring creative grief and how to deal with it by Danielle Pender
”Today it’s so easy to numb ourselves with any amount of distractions, but if we shine a light into the darkest corners of our lives, we can find some of the most profound lessons there.” This TikTok springs right to mind.
We can’t afford to be climate doomers by Rebecca Solnit
Last week I visited Carmel, California, and saw so many incredible wild animals, including Humpback whales and dozens of unbelievably cute sea otters. But about 80 years ago it was assumed humans had made sea otters extinct by hunting them for their fur. Now, their populations have returned, which led to the revitalization of the entire coastal area. It was a personal reminder of climate hope and the real possibility of change in the world for me.
My mom is selfish. Do I still have to be a good daughter? By Kathryn Jezer-Morton
Really thoughtful advice here (in the second question) about one way to think about the time you choose to spend with a difficult parent while they are still alive. Jezer-Morton describes that we do not always have to take an “actuarial approach” to relationships, or demand that we take and give the same amount. Life almost never works that way, and keeping score is a lousy way to love someone.
“I sometimes wonder if all of our lifelong journeys of entrepreneurial self-improvement are making it too easy to lose sight of the pleasure of being intensively known by someone,” Jezer-Morton says.
50 of the weirdest, most wonderful corners of the web by Emma Beddington
Questionable self-care advice
To enjoy my silly little life as much as Toeknee, who’s currently going through chemo and bringing us along for the ride. This video (which has nothing to do with cancer but is an excellent sendoff to summer) brought me so much joy I watched it a few times. Here’s another favorite.
✨ What’s your best day ever?
🙏 Alex Elle invites us to keep a gratitude list in September
🏆 Keep a running list of your achievements in a brag document. This post bends toward using one for work, but you can brag about any of your achievements at any time! Keep a list of your good habits, times you feel proud, times you helped others, times you were creative, etc. The first time I made a list of all the things I used to dream about that I have now achieved, it really lifted me up and gave me a more realistic perspective on myself. I also keep a folder of screenshots of loving comments people have said about me/my writing to refer to when I need a gentle reminder.
⏰ I was fascinated by this interview with a man who spent months living underground to research humans’ internal clocks. I learned that those who live underground for long periods end up living on 48-hour wake-and-sleep cycles!
💐 8 hacks to make your store-bought flowers look like an expensive floral arrangement. And don’t forget to buy yourself the damn lilies!
When you’re sick of summer and it shows.