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A trailer for David Lynch’s Return of the Jedi


Did you know that George Lucas approached David Lynch about directing Return of the Jedi? After a visit to Lucas’ studio described here by Lynch, Lynch turned Lucas down pretty quickly. But what might have been, huh? Well, this fan-made trailer gives us a taste of a Lynch-helmed Star Wars movie. (via one perfect shot)

Tags: David Lynch   George Lucas   movies   remix   Star Wars   trailers   video
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so good.
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The Haight in San Francisco
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jedi, walk with me

The Four Donald Trumps You Meet On Earth

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Donald Trump has said repugnant, insulting things about women—over and over and over again—for as long as he’s been in the public eye. He has called various women crazy, flat-chested, pigs. He refers to them as “pieces of ass.” He said pumping breast milk was “disgusting.”

“Women,” he told New York magazine in 1992. “You have to treat them like shit.”

Trump’s misogyny is shocking because it’s so brazen, but it’s infuriating because it’s so familiar. Chances are, if you’re a woman in 2016, you’ve heard it all before.

* * *

The first time you meet Donald Trump, he’s an older male relative who smells like cigarettes and asks when you are going to lose that weight. You’re nine years old. Your parents have to go out and buy a bottle of vodka for him before he arrives. His name is Dick. No, really, it is. At dinner one night, he explains to you that black people are dangerous. “If you turn around, they’ll put a knife in your back.” Except Bill Cosby. “He’s one of the good ones.” Turns out he’s wrong about Cosby and everything else, but the statute of limitations on Dick’s existence on Earth will run out before that information is widely available.

The next time you meet Donald Trump you’re in high school. You’re on the Academic Decathlon team because those are the kinds of extracurriculars a nerd like you gets down with. Model U.N., Thespians, Scholar Quiz, getting those good report cards with no boyfriends anywhere, girl! The teacher who’s volunteered to cover the Lit portion of the Decathlon is also the tennis coach, and he’s going over Ezra Pound’s poem, “Portrait d’une Femme,” with you and your teammates. He’s the first person who looks at you a certain way that will happen again and again for the rest of your life, as if he simultaneously can’t see you and would like to kill you. He tells you the woman in the poem is “clearly a prostitute;” which is very, very wrong.  You explain to him that this part…

Your mind and you are our Sargasso Sea,

     London has swept about you this score years

And bright ships left you this or that in fee:

     Ideas, old gossip, oddments of all things,

Strange spars of knowledge and dimmed wares of price.

…doesn’t mean that men literally pay her. Sure, she’s someone stuck in a time when she can have nothing of her own; someone who assembles her life from the odd bits she collects from others, choosing a catch-all existence over a suffocating marriage—made second-rate perhaps by her time, not by her self—but the “fee” doesn’t mean she is being paid for sex. He tells you that you just don’t get it. What he doesn’t get is that she’s a person. He is aging and bald and enjoys saying “whore” to a roomful of children. A few years later, he gets fired for having sex with a student. Him? Him. Of course him.

The next time you meet Donald Trump, he’s your boss. Well, he’s your boss’s boss. A vice president in marketing who seemingly literally cannot stop talking. He’s on his third wife, and that’ll be over in a few years. He can’t believe your mother is his age. He thinks you are friends. He asks you if you’ve changed your hair every time he sees you. Sometimes during meetings he’ll turn away and open a magazine while someone is presenting. One time he comes to a halt in the middle of his own sentence to stare at a woman’s boobs for somewhere from seven to 27 uncomfortable seconds. (It’s hard to gauge time accurately during a truly aggressive boob-stare.) When he finally gets fired years later, his HR file as fat as a pig knuckle, the rumor is he’s caught stealing his own office furniture on the weekend. They don’t even stop him. They just let him go. It’s like the building itself sighs with relief.

And then you get out of your more corporate job and become a television comedy writer on a good show, a show that keeps going. You go from staff writer to producer to co-executive producer in the space of seven years. You work with your sister, which is like a dream, and your co-workers are cool, and your boss is very, very cool. It’s almost as if the fact that you’re a woman doesn’t matter at all. At all. It’s like you finally escaped.

The Trumps are vanquished. They’re dead, or arrested, or fired, sobbing quietly into their stolen office furniture, wondering where it all went.

But then, it starts happening. The actual Trump—the real Donald Trump—starts making a bunch of noise about the birth certificate of a black man. It’s racist. It’s so racist. But it’s just background noise. Then he starts winning in the primaries. You say “no fucking way,” under your breath a lot when you read the headlines.

There he is, implying that people of color are dangerous, that women are whores, that you just don’t get it, opening a magazine while someone else is talking. There he is, all the worst people you ever had to meet, and tolerate, and fight, or at least ignore. There is the villain at the end of the horror movie rising up again with his knife and you are like: “This motherfucker again? No way, I’m tired.”

And it makes you deranged, like almost actually deranged. You engage his followers on Twitter for awhile and then decide to just tweet fart sounds at them because arguing with them is pointless. They think there is actually a discussion to be had about whether racism is okay.

You can’t believe these people and you can’t believe this guy, Donald Trump. It makes you insane to look at him, to see that look on his face that you’ve seen before when he talks about women who aren’t supermodels. When he talks about black people, or Mexicans, like he simultaneously can’t see them and wants to kill them.

And then you write a tweet about how Donald Trump is making you a loon because you’ve had to deal with him over and over again in your life, and someone from The Atlantic asks you to write a personal essay about it. You don’t write essays, you write fart jokes, but you give it a try. You write it in second person, which is a kind of writing that you are pretty sure people look down on, but screw it, you’re old now, and you’ve got money in the bank and kids and you are too tired to care what anybody thinks about your second-person narrative voice. “Who cares what readers of The Atlantic think about my second-person narrative voice,” you whisper to your cats, while secretly deeply caring.

Screw it because you aren’t that lady in that poem whom Ezra Pound can only see as a collecting bin for dribs and drabs left by men. You’ve got money and a job. You made yourself. All those other Trumps are dead, or fired, or pleaded no contest to the charge of sex with a minor, or all of the above. Because they are disasters. (Hell, even Ezra Pound wound up in an open-air cage because he was an anti-Semite and fascist sympathizer.)

Hillary’s still ahead in the polls and she looks like a comer. You bought a house in the Valley with your own dough where you found the exoskeleton of a praying mantis in the yard this morning and placed it in a Tupperware for safekeeping. An artifact, an old skin.

“There’s no one like him,” people say, “He’s unprecedented.” Maybe so, but I swear I’ve been dealing with this douchebag all my life, and let me tell you something: It doesn’t end well for him.

Because black people aren’t dangerous, and because their lives matter; because not every woman is a prostitute; and honestly because that furniture just isn’t yours, dude. The world is always watching, and you can’t get away with it forever. Go ahead and slip out of your skin into a different form. We’ll fight you again, then. Go ahead.

And by the way, Dick, if you’re reading this from Ghostville, I never lost that weight, Bill Cosby is an alleged serial rapist, and Hillary Clinton will be the next president of the United States.

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Fuck Donald Trump
5 days ago
“There’s no one like him,” people say, “He’s unprecedented.” Maybe so, but I swear I’ve been dealing with this douchebag all my life, and let me tell you something: It doesn’t end well for him.
Waterloo, Canada

ailaalue: man: has anyone ever told you you’re beautiful? me: oh no sir, today is my first day out...

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man: has anyone ever told you you’re beautiful?
me: oh no sir, today is my first day out of doors and papà forbade mirrors in the house lest we fall victim to vanity

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21 days ago
oh papà
21 days ago
Portland, OR
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14 Excerpts From the FBI’s Report on Hillary Clinton’s Email

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Kevin Drum, after reading the entire FBI report on Hillary Clinton’s email:

That said, this report is pretty much an almost complete exoneration of Hillary Clinton. She wasn’t prohibited from using a personal device or a personal email account, and others at state did it routinely. She’s told the truth all along about why she did it. Colin Powell did indeed advise her about using personal email shortly after she took office, but she chose to follow the rules rather than skirt them, as Powell did. She didn’t take her BlackBerry into her office. She communicated with only a very select group of 13 people. She took no part in deciding which emails were personal before handing them over to State. She had nothing to do with erasing information on the PRN server. That was a screw-up on PRN’s end. She and her staff all believed at the time that they were careful not to conduct sensitive conversations over unclassified email systems. And there’s no evidence that her server was ever hacked.

There’s remarkably little here. If you nonetheless believe that it’s enough to disqualify Hillary from the presidency, that’s fine. I have no quarrel with you. But if the FBI is to be believed, it’s all pretty small beer.

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26 days ago
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sourcedumal: profeminist: exgynocraticgrrl-archive: Tony...





Tony Porter: A Call To Men
"Tony is the original visionary and co-founder behind A CALL TO MEN: The National Association of Men and Women Committed to Ending Violence Against Women. He is the author of "Well Meaning Men...Breaking Out of the Man Box - Ending Violence Against Women" and the visionary for the book, NFL Dads Dedicated to Daughters.

Tony's message of accountability is welcome and supported by many grassroots and established organizations. He’s currently working with numerous domestic and sexual violence programs, the National Football League, the National Basketball Association, colleges and universities around the country. He has worked with the United States Military Academy at West Point and the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis.

Tony is an international lecturer for the U.S. State Department having worked in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, United Kingdom and Brazil. In addition, he has been a guest presenter for the United Nations' Commission on the Status of Women and has been a script consultant for Law & Order: Special Victims Unit." - (x)

More Tony Porter posts 

And when we do tell men how dangerous it is, they tell us to shut up.

See: Any conversation about street harassment.

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32 days ago
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Building Compassionate Software

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If you make a mistake, you would want a colleague to point it out to you, right? Just like you would hope a colleague would ask a question when they don’t understand something, and just like you want everyone on your team to speak up with ideas, even if they’re unconventional. But chances are that you’ve been in the position to speak up before and haven’t.

Why? It feels like those scenarios represent a good team dynamic, but what effect do they have on a team’s performance? And how can we begin to change a team’s dynamic to improve its performance?

Today we’re going to take a look at psychological safety and how it can help your team perform better. My goal is to give you the evidence you need to take back to your team so we can all improve our workplaces – with enough of us, we can begin to make significant change in our industry and beyond.

I’m going to take us through three main points:

  1. Feelings Matter. Before we talk about feelings, we should discuss why exactly they matter. There’s a lot of evidence here that I’m excited to talk about.
  2. Teams with Psychological Safety Perform Better. I’m going to describe what psychological safety means and what it looks like.
  3. How to Implement Psychological Safety on Your Team. After we have a firm grasp on feelings and psychological safety, I want to discuss some ways to start improving your team’s performance and dynamics.

I’ve had this topic on my mind for a long time, and I’m really excited to get started. Let’d dive in!

Feelings Matter

So I’ve written about this before, but I’ll say it again: feelings matter. It might sound obvious to you – it might not – so it really does need to be repeated: feelings matter. Compassionate software can’t be built without compassion for each other.

Feelings matter, a lot. We’ve actually researched this: students who learned about the struggles that scientists went through on their way to achieving success did a lot better in science class. And students who didn’t learn started doing worse.

Learning how successful scientists struggle helped students when they inevitably struggled. That’s because struggling is normal, but when we neglect to mention the struggles of history’s great scientists, we present the incorrect view that they just were great. And that’s not true, everyone struggles sometimes. Students no longer felt like outsiders when they started to struggle.

When students see themselves and their own struggles represented in the history of science, they learn to empathize with scientists. Empathy, the core of emotions, is the practice of sharing another person’s point of view and feelings.

Empathy is a choice we make. In 1996, Theresa Wiseman’s work (PDF) categorized four necessary components to empathy:

  • Seeing the world as others see it.
  • Recognizing and understanding another’s feelings.
  • Staying non-judgemental.
  • Communicating that you understand.

These are things we can do, things we can choose to do.

This is how someone empathizes, which is core to feelings, which matter. Feelings are important. Now I want to explore what it means to be a member of a team where feelings are prioritized.

Teams with Psychological Safety Perform Better

So you want to be a 10x developer, eh? You may have heard that the 10x developer is a myth, but that’s not true: a 10x developer is someone who makes the ten five developers around them each twice as productive.

You can be a 10x developer by making sure that your team has psychological safety.

Psychological safety is defined as

The belief that one will not be punished or humiliated for speaking up with ideas, questions, concerns, or mistakes.

I know this sounds touchy-feely, but there is data to back this up! Google spent five years on Project Aristotle searching for the answer to what makes some teams perform really well and other teams perform poorly? They examined a tonne of data and eventually – after extensive searching – they found psychological safety is correlated positively with team success.

There were other behaviors that seemed important as well — like making sure teams had clear goals and creating a culture of dependability. But Google’s data indicated that psychological safety, more than anything else, was critical to making a team work.

This is Google. They A/B test shades of blue to use on the Gmail “Send” button. They are the data-driven organization, and their research came to the conclusion that teams with psychological safety were more successful than teams without.

Remember, psychological safety is the belief that you won’t be punished for saying something. That’s fairly basic, but think about it: I’m sure you’ve worked in groups where this wasn’t the case. Was that project a success, or a failure?

Developers – people – need to be able to ask questions when they don’t understand something. We need to feel free to suggest ideas or concerns, to be able to point out and admit mistakes. This is really necessary for development teams, and especially necessary in resource-strained startups where missteps could cost the company.

There was this one time at Artsy where I was behind schedule on a big feature, which was delaying me from starting work on something really important. I sat down with my team, and we had just started reviewing the designs for all the stuff I had to finish when a designer asked “what if… we just… don’t do any of it?” We hadn’t really considered whether the feature I was behind on was worth delaying the next project for. A designer from outside our team was comfortable challenging our assumptions. They were right, we dropped the delayed feature and moved directly on to what was more important.

Because the designer felt comfortable asking questions, we came to a new conclusion we hadn’t considered on own.

Psychological safety is observable in teams in two ways:

  1. Conversational turn-taking.
  2. Average emotional sensitivity.

Conversational turn-taking is a measure of how often people in a conversation switch from talking to listening. One member of a team who dominates the conversation is risking the psychological safety of the entire team. Everyone needs to feel safe having their say, and to revisit a conversation later if necessary.

Average emotional sensitivity is a bit trickier. Emotional sensitivity is basically a measure of how empathetic some is to another’s feelings. For example, how often does one colleague notice another colleague is having a difficult time? And when they notice, do they try to understand? Do they stay non-judgemental? And do they communicate that understanding?

Psychological safety really ought to be expected at your workplace. At any workplace, really, for two reasons:

  1. It makes team members feel safer: everyone is welcome.
  2. It makes business sense: teams with high levels of psychological safety consistently perform better than those without.

Everyone at your workplace should expect these things: from contributors and leadership, C-levels and the company board.

Okay. So feelings matter, and psychological safety is why high-performing teams do so well. But how would one go about improving their team’s dynamic? Where do we start?

I’m glad you asked.

How to Implement Psychological Safety on Your Team

Psychological safety is awesome! How do we “do psychological safety” though? That’s an interesting question. First we need to talk about the two scenarios you’re likely to find yourself in.

If you’re a team leader, there’s a lot you can do to improve your team’s dynamic and – as a consequence – your team’s performance. Let’s take a look at those steps after we discuss how individual contributors can help their teams, too.

If you’re a team member, then you can still help improve the levels of psychological safety in your team using the same techniques as a team lead. However, you’re likely to have the biggest impact if you approach your team lead directly, present the evidence we’ve discussed, and work on the team dynamic together. This is really their job, they just might not know it yet.

Leaders and contributors can do three main things to help improve psychological safety on their team:

  1. Admit fallibility and normalize struggle.
  2. Frame all work as learning experiences.
  3. Model curiosity by creating a space where opinions are asked for and voices don’t need to ask permission.

First, remember that everyone struggles and everyone makes mistakes. If you, as a team lead, make this the norm, then that sends a message to team members that it’s okay to make mistakes. Honestly, it’s pretty straightforward: you want your team to feel safe when things go wrong, so make sure to act normal when you make a mistake.

Next, all work your team performs should be primarily modelled as exercises in learning. Because that’s what they are; when a team build something, you’re all really just learning how to build something as a team. The byproduct of this is the thing that happened to built.

The product a team builds is important to the business’ success, so it may seem counterintuitive to place a higher priority on the learning experience of a team than on building the product itself. But remember: by doing this, you’re helping to increase the performance of your team so – in turn – they’re able to build a better product, faster and with fewer bugs. The evidence shows it makes business sense.

Finally, you need to model curiosity. Ask questions, even silly ones. Ask questions you think you already know the answer to. Help model an environment where learning through curiosity is praised.

This advice is really built upon empathy, which means there are a few other common sense tidbits that accompany it:

  • Watch out for people getting interrupted in meetings. When you see it, say “hang on, I want to hear the rest of what they have to say.”
  • Don’t pressure people into providing immediate feedback. Instead of asking on the spot, give time for reflective feedback. “I’ll type up what we’ve discussed and send it to everyone, let me know what isn’t clear.”
  • Allow space for your team to revisit discussions if someone feels their voice wasn’t heard.
  • We can practice empathy, we can set a Google Calendar reminder to reflect on recent meetings, we can focus on the feelings of our peers.

Psychological safety can be a differentiator at your workplace. It’s hard to retain good developers, and it’s harder to find them in the first place. Working in a safe environment, where everyone feels like they can ask questions and where everyone is able to do their best work, well that sounds awesome, doesn’t it? Implement these suggestions so that your workplace stands out to prospective developers.

This can be a workplace differentiator, likely more attractive than free snacks or a foosball table to prospective colleagues. Show your potential hires how you structure meetings, give them examples where you made a mistake but learned something, tell them a story about how someone asked a question and it had a big impact.

We’ve covered a lot today, from some initial questions to empathy, and from definition of ‘psychological safety’ to steps on improving it in your team. That’s a lot to take in, why not set a reminder somewhere to wait a week, think things over, and revisit this post.

We have the evidence that shows how an ideal team works, but we see our industry falling short of that ideal. But! We have the tools to improve ourselves, our teams, and our industry. I really hope that teams operating in psychological safety become the norm, something to expect at any job. We’ve got a long way to go before we reach that point, but I know we can do it if we work together.

Like I said, I’ve had this topic on my mind for a long time, though I didn’t have the vocabulary to discuss it or the evidence to support my theories. A few months ago, I attended the Open Source & Feelings conference, and the talks there really helped frame a lot of my thoughts. I found the following talk particularly helpful, and led me to a lot of the points I discussed today.

I’m presenting on this topic at a meetup here in New York in October. I’d love to see you there, hear what you think, and talk about how we can all help improve the industry together.

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39 days ago
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39 days ago
"a 10x developer is someone who makes the ten developers around them each twice as productive."
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