Photo by Dominic Vogl on Unsplash

In the month since I stopped working full-time to focus on freelance projects and aimless walks, I’ve gotten pretty into trees.

On my first handful of springtime hikes in New York’s Hudson Valley, I lugged around a copy of the National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Trees. I’d pause every few dozen trees to cross-reference bark ridge patterns and last autumn’s leaf litter, puzzling over the distinction between fissures and furrows, the chroma of browns. Last weekend, I downloaded an app that can identify most trees, plants, and even fungi from a single photograph, which feels a little…


Instead of waiting impatiently for the future to arrive, use the concept of ‘dual reality’ to find peace in this weird pandemic moment

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If 2020 was the worst year ever, 2021 is on track to be the weirdest. Not bad, per se — or at least, not as bad as what we’ve all survived to date. More like, a year that’s shaping up to be more than a little bit… off.

As I write this, most U.S. states have freshly expanded Covid-19 vaccine eligibility to all adults over the age of 18. Yet, at the very same time, states across the country are seeing an alarming surge in cases. The same is happening across Europe and in Canada. In Brazil, the pandemic is…


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In the wake of January’s Trump-incited mob breach of the U.S. Capitol, versions of the same grim question began to emerge: Would the police have been so haphazard if the rioters had been Black instead of white?

The question was not purely speculative. Last summer, in cities across the nation, protesters took to the streets to denounce the systemic police brutalization of Black people. Many of these protesters were met with physical intimidation and, in some instances, brute force — not by lone vigilantes, but by the same law enforcement officers purportedly trained to “serve and protect” them.

Now, the…


Cal Newport’s advice for automating your workflow

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Email is a thief disguised as convenience — and its sneaky energy-sucking threatens to ruin our work lives.

Replying to emails and company message threads never feels like it should count as “real” work. After all, have you ever seen a job posting that lists “quick with tonally appropriate Slack emojis” or “a whiz at inbox zero” among a candidate’s ideal skills? Yet, most of us spend upward of a third of our workdays feeding what the author and Georgetown professor Cal Newport calls “the hyperactive hive mind workflow.” …


It helps to understand the science of success

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I never thought I’d say this, but the impending return to “normal” life is stressing me out.

For some people, the pandemic has freed up time to learn new skills and invest in hobbies. For me, it’s been a year of feeling thwarted: The sense of taking two steps forward and one step back, over and over again. The book proposal I’ve been working on for longer than I care to admit has been “almost done” for months. …


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It’s all too much. There’s work stress to contend with, household chores to get done, child wrangling, and relationship tending, and—oh yeah—that whole pandemic situation. You’ve hit the limit: the wall.

For better or worse, the only way out of your present wall-scape is to smash your way through it. It’s time to reclaim your time. And you can do that by getting in control of your schedule.

As the entrepreneur, business coach, and Launch Your Inner Entrepreneur author Charlene Walters writes in a recent blog post on Medium: “You, and you alone, are the one who must take action…


The psychological benefits of solving someone else’s problems

Photo: Zbynek Pospisil/Getty Images

The other day, someone I follow on Twitter posted an open offer: If anyone in New York City had an elderly relative who needed help signing up for their Covid vaccine online, they’d be happy to lend a hand. I thought of my own grandmothers, who are both 91 and rely on a network of kids and grandkids to navigate the digital labyrinths of modern life. Then I thought of elders who don’t have this kind of support, and the relatives who may not be able to offer it.

It all dredged up a feeling I barely recognized, this online…


On Tuesday morning, the NAACP, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi), and the civil rights law firm Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll filed a lawsuit against former President Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani, and two White supremacist groups over their roles in the January 6 coup attempt at the U.S. capitol.

As Politico reports, the suit alleges that Trump and Giuliani conspired, in tandem with the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers, to incite the January 6 mob to keep Congress from certifying the results of the 2020 presidential election. …


You’re not the only person who’s eager to reconnect

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Early last year, I went on a first friend-date with a woman who lived in my neighborhood. We’d determined a mutual affinity for rude jokes on Twitter, and decided to take our potential friendship to the next level. It was a little awkward, as all first dates tend to be, but we had a rapport. We made loose plans to hang out again soon, and it seemed plausible that we’d follow through on them — though truthfully, it was just as likely that we’d let things fizzle out, the way so many budding potential friendships do.

At any rate, you…


Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Between the 1970s and the 1990s, former Chicago police commander Jon Burge headed up a “Midnight Crew” of officers that terrorized the Black population of Chicago’s South Side. Now, a new online archive examines Burge’s legacy of “violence and terror” in depth.

An initiative of Chicago’s South Side journalism nonprofit, the Invisible Institute, the Chicago Police Torture Archive includes more than 100,000 pages of case documents that detail the allegations against Burge and his crew. The website also includes interviews with some of the more than 100 Black men who were brutalized under Burge’s command.

“This archive documents the persistence…

Kelli María Korducki

Currently: Writer, editor, author at-large | Recently: Senior Books Editor @ Forge

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