this is the archive for the ‘links and ideas’ category:


shake & fold

we watched this short ted talk years ago…

…and to this day, i cannot wash my hands on a public restroom without counting the 12 apostles while vigorously shaking them! :D

now is a good time

i’ve had this xkcd comic strip on a bookmark for years, and return to it frequently for some perspective.

Is It Worth the Time?

it’s so tempting to complain about lack of time… but how much time do we actually need? and more importantly, what things could we be optimising to create that time? think about it!

pre-exposure prophylaxis

did you know that there’s a pill that prevents HIV infection?

my mom used to work on the infectious diseases infirmary at a big hospital, and the horror stories coming out of that department would leave me speechless, heartbrokean and infuriated in turns — especially people finding out they’re infected after years of being married to someone who had never disclosed their HIV-positive status to them. so my mind was blown when i read about PrEP (or pre-exposure prophylaxis) on a listserve email a couple of weeks ago. though not legal everywhere yet, it’s super effective — and such a game changer, for so many people.

while i’m amazed that this thing exists, i’m also dismayed that i had never even heard of it before, and neither had most of the friends i asked about. so to help spread the information, i’m copying Faith’s email below.

read about it and spread the word!

“Did you know there is a medication approved by the FDA and some Euro countries that prevents HIV infection? There is! And it’s incredibly effective. The concept is called pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP. Right now, one drug is approved, but a lot of other medications are being tested for approval.

I’ve been working in the field of HIV research for 28 years. I’ve seen a lot of things. I’ve watched a lot of people, including a lot of friends, die. I know that every one of these friends would be throwing this medication off the rooftops if it meant that one person was prevented from getting HIV. There is no controversy. This is a proven medical intervention to a public health crisis. Go learn, then inform your friends and family.

Gay men, especially white gay men, are using it with enormous successes. Feel free to look up PrEP effectiveness for more information. Unfortunately, the message that this medication is available hasn’t really gotten out to gay men of color or women at risk for HIV. Why?

Well, stigma for one. We don’t want anyone knowing what we do behind closed doors for fear of discrimination. We might also have some shame about our activities, even if they’re no one else’s business. Also, no one really wants to admit that they might be exposed to HIV during a relationship. So PrEP is for “other people” but not “me.” The fact is, if you are having sex with someone and you don’t know (really KNOW, not just assume) their HIV status, HIV infection is a possibility. And PrEP is as effective, if not more effective, than condoms! Don’t you think that’s something you should know about, even if you never take it? I do. That’s why I have been planning this since I signed up for the listserve more than 5 years ago. I think you should know ALL of the tools available to you in your toolbox.

Pass it on.”

lettermonth, round 4!

it’s february, which means, it’s time to put my stationery stash to good use and send some postcards and letters! :)

so if you’d like to get a piece of handwritten mail from me, leave a comment below (and your address on my postable, if i don’t have it yet). i’m working through my list of “usuals”, but there’s always space for new friends. let me know!

month of letters: done!

so, finally, this was the year i wrote a postcard or letter for every day in february, successfully checking that item off my list of 101 things to do in 1001 days… yay!

the recipients were a mix of old and new friends, which gave it a nice twist — conversations were started, continued or kickstarted again by means of a random mail item. owed replies were sent, and people were cheered up, or thanked or remembered. it was fun, and it had the unintended benefit of giving me something else to think of during some trying time. i wish i had the stamina to keep it up the whole year! :)