Reads of the Week: September 28, 2012

“Sometimes I try to leave my narrow path and join the swirling mainstream of life, but I always find myself drawn inexorably back toward the chasm’s edge…”

He’s a dark one, Edvard Munch. I always knew he was the broody type, but until I learned more about him from John Coffey, deputy director for art at the N.C. Museum of Art, I had no idea how haunted and anxious he was. “Troubled, but powerful,” says Architects & Artisans.

Last Thursday I was invited by the museum to attend the media tour of Edvard Munch: Symbolism in Print, so I expect to be a bit Munch-obsessed for the next month or so. But unlike Munch, I’ll do it in a celebratory, not despairing, way. To get a taste of the exhibit, check out the collection of tweets from WRAL producer Stephanie Beck.

If you’re in NC, I recommend seeing it, or for double the pleasure, wait until October 21 when an exhibition of still-life masterpieces visits us from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

I’m featuring the work of Jeff Cobb twice this week, not because he’s a North Carolina guy, but because he published two good posts about lifelong learning. On his company blog, Tagoras, he asked why associations don’t have a bigger presence in the conversation about the need for lifelong learning and skills-retooling in today’s learning economy. “As far as I can tell, we do not yet seem to be offering much of a voice in the public conversation about the growing skill (and knowledge) gap and the critical need for effective lifelong learning.”

Read more on DIY retooling in this New York Times article by Shaila Dewan: To Stay Relevant in a Career, Workers Train Nonstop. I would say “to stay relevant,” period. We’ve had or will have many careers in our lives.

The other great post from Jeff was on his Mission to Learn blog about his “learning walks.” Thanks to his idea, I’ve stayed out longer on several of my walks around the neighborhood because the podcast wasn’t quite over.

Peg Tyre wrote at The Atlantic about a failing Staten Island high school that identified the underlying problem for many of their students: their “inability to translate thoughts into coherent, well-argued sentences, paragraphs, and essays was severely impeding intellectual growth in many subjects.” After much research, they retrained teachers and reworked the curriculum by “placing an overwhelming focus on teaching the basics of analytic writing, every day, in virtually every class.” The results? Higher graduation rates and test scores, and inspired kids.

When I moved to California in 2004 from Washington DC, one of my friends said I would have no problem making the adjustment because I was “bicoastal.” She was right; I loved my life in Sacramento and only returned to the east to be with my honey. Stephanie Pappas at LiveScience digs into the cultural differences between the east and west coasts, specifically Boston and San Francisco. I grew up south of Boston and spent a lot of time in SF while I lived in California (my brother and friends lived there), and I think she’s on to something here.

Last one – a practical one, ICYMI, Kevin O’Keefe shares a guide to Twitter language and acronyms.

Happy Friday!

This is not your typical Madonna. This one might need a cigarette soon. (Edvard Munch, 1895-1902, Museum of Modern Art)

Author: deirdrereid

Deirdre is a freelance writer for companies serving the association market, who after more than 20 years in the association and restaurant industries, is enjoying the good life as a ghostblogger and content marketing writer. Away from her laptop, you can find her walking in the woods, doing yoga, going to shows, journaling, cooking, or relaxing in a comfy chair with a good book and a glass of something tasty in hand.

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