Hagan Blount

PlaceInvaders TableTalk Newsletter // December 29, 2017

Hagan Blount
PlaceInvaders TableTalk Newsletter // December 29, 2017

Are You Old? Infirm? Then Kindly Disappear

Let’s all resolve to spend more time with the elderly and give more thought to their challenges and what we can gain from their knowledge and experiences. One thing we’ve noticed moving from a huge city to a teeny town is how much easier it is to be friends with folks from all walks of life, and how much more wonderful it is. This lovely essay from Frank Bruni focuses on one woman’s experience with invisibility once seated in a wheelchair, even though her mental abilities are still 100%. The book Being Mortal by Atul Gawande is a great take on this, and should be required reading for anyone who plans to cohabitate the earth with the fine folks from the older wiser, generations before theirs.
 

Bussed Out: How America Moves It’s Homeless

A key example of the argument for journalism. What government program would so thoroughly examine a phenomenon like the purchase of (nearly 35K!) one-way bus tickets for homeless people? Homelessness is a shameful, embarrassing problem in America, and is likely only getting worse. While some of these programs can be justified as aiming to give folks a better chance in perhaps a less hustle-bound metro, they can all also be judged as efforts to make the issue less visible, or at worst, just go away.


The Year Not to Defer Dreams

An op-ed of a quasi-love letter to the Staten Island ferry, and--we think--to not taking for granted everything that’s still simple and great, even when it seems like there is a lot that sucks.


Butt-Scratching Caterpillars, Whispering Whales, and Eight Other Sounds That Defined 2017

Maxed out on “The Best _____ of 2017” articles? We bet you haven’t checked out this one, yet. The sounds of the year include eggsplosions, a cracking ice shelf, bug butts, a shouty baby whale, and a dry-mouthed--or worse--Drumpf.


It’s possible that you’re not late to the Ripple party

If you put a thousand dollars in XRP on January 1, 2017, you’d have $250,000 right now (the number in the article is off a bit). People in the decentralized cryptocurrency space don’t really like Ripple; it’s centralized, largely held by the founding company, and run by a big bank friendly cadre of tech bros. What does it do? It’s designed to be a transactional currency (similar to a petrodollar) and there’s no mining, the transaction cost is borne by the network. Right now, It seems like people are buying on the rumor that it’s next up for GDAX/Coinbase insertion, but who knows? It sure seems like this one could be a major player for years to come. As always, please don’t take this as investment advice.