It’s good to blog sometimes

“The world has been shocked by the devastating effects of COVID-19. We are aware of the enormous medical and financial burden that COVID-19 is having on the music community and we are actively taking steps to provide assistance where it’s needed most. Due to massive cancellations, artists are struggling to find the means to make ends meet during these unprecedented times. Sweet Relief is here to provide immediate assistance and we have created this DONOR-DIRECTED FUND with a limited amount of funds available to be used specifically for musicians and music industry workers affected by the Coronavirus. Funds raised will go towards medical expenses, lodging, clothing, food and other vital living expenses to those impacted due to sickness or loss of work.”
Sweet Relief for musicians COVID-19 fund.

“Beginning today, artists ranging from writers and musicians to painters and actors who are facing dire economic circumstances due to Covid-19 can apply for a $5,000 grant at Artists must be 21 years old and have resided in the U.S. for at least two years. More details about eligibility are available on the Artist Relief website. The Artist Relief partnership, which includes the Academy of American Poets, Artadia, Creative Capital, Foundation for Contemporary Arts, MAP Fund, the National Young Arts Foundation, and United States Artists, will launch with about $10 million to dispense in grants. The funds were raised from a variety of national arts organizations beyond the initial partnership and include $5 million in seed money from the Mellon Foundation.”
Arts Funders Launch Artist Pandemic Relief Fund, by Calvin Reid, PW, 8 April 2020

“The National Endowment for the Arts is now taking applications for $75 million in grants to nonprofit arts organizations from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The money has been earmarked to combat job losses and hardship related to the spread of Covid-19. Organizations, including publishers and literary institutions, that have received NEA awards in the past four years are eligible to apply for a direct $50,000 grant. Funds can be used for staff salary support, fees for artists or contractual personnel, and facilities costs. The deadline to apply is April 22, with the earliest news of approval or rejection coming by June 30.”
NEA Offering $75 Million to Nonprofits to Save Jobs, by Ed Nawotka, Publishers Weekly, 9 April 2020

“Donald Trump’s top coronavirus adviser has warned again that there is no scientific evidence to support the use of an unproven anti-malaria drug the president has been pushing as a possible remedy for Covid-19.”
Fauci: no evidence anti-malaria drug pushed by Trump works against virus, by Richard Luscombe, The Guardian, 6 April 2020

“Public health experts are beginning to make predictions about when coronavirus infection rates will peak. Economists are calculating when the cost of continuing to shutter restaurants, shopping malls and other businesses — a move that has already pushed some 10 million Americans into unemployment, with millions more on the way — will outweigh the savings from further efforts to slow the virus once the infection curve has flattened out. Government officials are setting competing targets. President Trump has pushed his expected date of reopening the economy to the end of April. “We have to get back to work,” he said in a briefing on Saturday. ‘We have to open our country again. We don’t want to be doing this for months and months and months. We’re going to open our country again. This country wasn’t meant for this.’ Some governors have set much more conservative targets, like Ralph Northam of Virginia, who canceled the remainder of the school year and imposed a shelter-at-home order through June 10. Other states, like Florida, only recently agreed to shut activity down but have set more aggressive targets — April 30, in the case of the Sunshine State — to restart it.”
U.S. Is Nowhere Close to Reopening the Economy, Experts Say, by Jim Tankersley, NY Times, 6 April 2020

“Donald Trump was warned at the end of January by one of his top White House advisers that coronavirus had the potential to kill hundreds of thousands of Americans and derail the US economy, unless tough action were taken immediately, new memos have revealed.”
Trump was warned in January of Covid-19’s devastating impact, memos reveal, by Ed Pilkington and Martin Pengelly, The Guardian, 7 April 2020

“So assuming Sanders doesn’t make a miraculous comeback, it’s worth asking: Did the left broadly and Sanders and Warren in particular blow the 2020 campaign?1 Or did Sanders, Warren and the left always have a narrow path to victory because Democrats have tended to prefer more centrist candidates, and the period between Nevada and Super Tuesday a bit of a mirage?”
Did Sanders Blow It For The Democratic Left? Or Was The Nomination Always Out Of Reach?, by Perry Bacon, Jr., FiveThirtyEight, 7 April 2020

“A newly discovered portrait of a woman who may have inspired one of Jane Austen’s most gleefully spirited characters has been acquired by a museum devoted to the novelist’s life and work. Mary Pearson was briefly engaged to Austen’s dashing brother Henry and is widely thought to have been the model for Lydia, the bad Bennet girl who runs away with a soldier in Pride and Prejudice. On Tuesday Jane Austen’s House museum in Chawton, Hampshire, announced it had acquired the only known portrait of Pearson, one which shines fascinating light on the world of Austen and the importance for women to find the right man to marry.”
The original Lydia? Portrait discovery delights Jane Austen museum, by Mark Brown, The Guardian, 7 April 2020

“Damn, Hi and Lois, climate change is old news — it’s all about global pandemics now! Try to keep up with the depressing, depressing times, won’t you?”
Hi and Lois, by Josh Fruhlinger, Comics Curmudgeon, 10 April 2020

Scroll down for the joke. Somehow nuclear winter seemed much scarier than climate change… maybe because it was quicker? Paging Dr. Strangelove, paging Dr. Strangelove.

“As catastrophic as it is, the Covid-19 pandemic offers a moment of reflection. In medicine, pathology provides insights into how the body usually works by showing what happens when something interferes with normal functioning. We’re gaining some keen insights into how both our politics and our economy have been working, or not working, and a picture is emerging of what needs to change. Some see this as another opportunity to throw money to big corporations. We should set our sights higher. If we do, perhaps we can emerge from the crisis with an economy and society that are stronger than before.”
A Lasting Remedy for the Covid-19 Pandemic’s Economic Crisis, by Joseph E. Stiglitz, NY Review of Books, 8 April 2020

Does not mention universal basic income. Interesting. Okay, I’ll mention it: Universal Basic Income Universal Basic Income Universal Basic Income. There, that and this Basic Income & Meaningless Jobs: David Graeber interview & Stenography should do it. I doubt UBI will mean we’ll have more poets, but I’m sure it will mean we’ll have more happy people. Few things are more stressful than just scraping by. Full disclosure: I only work for artistic reasons, mainly, so I can keep my art going and solvency.

“Drawings were essential to her artistic process. They were often the start to her paintings and prints, even after she turned to sculpture in the 1940s. Some of these works, too, started as drawings. Her most well-known pieces, themed around a spider motif, started out as an ink and charcoal drawing in 1947.”
Inside the ‘healing’ Louise Bourgeois exhibition you can experience online, by Nadja Sayej, The Guardian, 7 April 2020


“Handsome Siblings” on Netflix (it’s going to take a while to get the soundtrack out of my head)


It’s good to shut up sometimes.
Marcel Marceau

Lead us not into temptation. Just tell us where it is; we’ll find it.
Sam Levenson

Life and death appeared to me ideal bounds, which I should first break through, and pour a torrent of light into our dark world.
Mary Shelley

Life is obstinate and clings closest where it is most hated.
Mary Shelley

Love is more pleasant than marriage for the same reason that novels are more amusing than history.
Nicolas Chamfort

Love is the power to see similarity in the dissimilar.
Theodor W. Adorno

Love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well.
Vincent Van Gogh

Middle age is when a guy keeps turning off lights for economical rather than romantic reasons.
Lillian Gordy Carter

Mime is an art beyond words. It is the art of the essential. And you cannot lie. You have to show the truth.
Marcel Marceau

Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature.
Saint Augustine

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