February 23, 2024

things to read: november

a beach on the coast of Colombo, Sri Lanka on a windy day.
photo caption: a beach on the coast of colombo, sri lanka on a windy day. people in the distance walk near the crashing waves. tropical trees and a faded blue sky frame the image. if you’re new here, i take roughly seven categories of photos.

I’m taking the week off from writing. We’re barreling towards the holiday season and I’m tired of barreling! Hope you enjoy some links that I appreciated reading.

Should America Keep Celebrating Thanksgiving? by Sean Sherman and Chase Iron Eyes

You want to give thanks? Give thanks to Native nations who granted settlers some form of legitimacy—by entering into treaties recognizing them—to be in our homelands. Those treaties recognized that Americans are now under our spiritual custody and have rights to pass through our country. As soon as Americans were able to impose their will on Indigenous nations, the treaties were violated.

The Spectacular Life of Octavia Butler by E. Alex Jung

“I never bought into my invisibility or non-existence as a Black person,” Butler wrote in a journal entry in 1999. “As a female and as an African-American, I wrote myself into the world. I wrote myself into the present, the future, and the past.” For Butler, writing was a way to manifest a person powerful enough to overcome the circumstances of her birth and what she saw as her own personal failings. Her characters were brazen when she felt timid, leaders when she felt she lacked charisma. They were blueprints for her own existence.

Become a Force for Better Gatherings by Priya Parker

Before you try to shift your community’s gathering culture, notice which parts aren’t working for you. Note your reaction if — at a meeting, dinner, or other gathering — you start feeling like, “here we go again,” or “what a waste of time,” or “I’m not enjoying this,” or “why am I here???” Consider these questions and even jot your answers down:

  • What exactly is bothering me here?
  • Why am I reacting so strongly?
  • Is it me? Is it them?
  • What do I wish was happening instead?
  • What’s my purpose in being here? What is the group’s purpose? (Do they even know what it is?)

my name is josh martinez. i have always loved trying to understand systems, and the systems that built those systems. i spend a lot of time thinking about how to get there from here.

i own and operate a consulting practice, Future Emergent.

say hello: josh[at]bethefuture.space