Crate of Curios part 68

Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s snowfall has left a few lingering drifts here and there, half-dirtied by the muddy melting water. Some parts in Athens are still without electricity, but mostly life seems to be back to normal, although the limits to ‘normal’ seem to be continuously stretching wider and wider. Nevertheless, let’s forget about pocket philosophy for now and open this week’s Crate.

  1. “‘If you only knew, my dear Uncle Shura’ Zinaida Serebriakova wrote in a letter to Alexander Benois on 17 December 1923, ‘how often I dream of leaving and somehow finding a way to turn my life around, a life without that single overriding daily worry about food (of which there is never enough and is always bad anyway), a life where my earnings are not so hopeless that we can’t even afford essentials. Commissions for my portraits are very infrequent indeed and hardly pay. The pennies I earn from them are normally spent on food even before the pictures are finished. If only something would sell at the American exhibition…’ Her later life in Paris brought a slightly greater financial stability at the price of forced separation from her family.

2. Monopoly, a game we mostly connect with the idea of getting rich, was in fact designed to teach about income inequality.

3. These two places have a roughly equal population. Think about it for a moment.

4. Want to be more mindful of your spending? These Japanese concepts might prove helpful.

5. Bill Bryson has a knack of writing about… more or less everything. This week’s book recommendation is his overview of a history of a home, introduced to the reader one room at a time.

6. And to finish off for this week, some alien problems by XKCD.

And that’s it for this time. Happy reading and until next week!

If you want to receive the Crate to your mailbox, you can subscribe here at Substack.