I greatly enjoyed Brian Lehrer’s interview segment with Jon Ronson called “When Social Media Gets Mad,” and was even more delighted with his thoughtful, creative, and meticulously researched book So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed. He does so much more than just remind us of dumb tweets and stupid truth-stretching. Ronson is after understanding the nature of shame and how it operates. I especially loved the section on disgraced Jersey governor Jim McGreevey’s second life as a pioneer in prison reform. I am also very interested in getting a job where I can create fake Tumblrs for people who need to bury unsavory Google search results. I think I would be quite good at that kind of blarney.
Flipping in a radically different direction, this week my older daughter’s book club finished Julie of the Wolves. I’ve been reading it out loud to her as well as participating in the conversations with her classmates in our homeschool coop, and have been blown away by the beauty of the imagery and the emotional depth. I did choose to omit a few paragraphs in the center of the book that describe Daniel’s intent to rape Miyax, because my daughter is too young for that. In retrospect, this book may have been better suited to the middle school class I taught, but apart from those few paragraphs I think the 2nd and 3rd graders really did get a lot out of the story.
Finally, to relax I read Ann Rule’s Crime Files #17: Lying in Wait. Judge away.