Change Catalysts Everywhere

This quote, paraphrased from a TED talk given by Halla Tomasdottir in 2010, captivates me still.

“We must fight the urge to rebuild the systems that have failed us.”

I puffy heart Halla Tomasdottir. She’s a mom. She has a solid career in business and is an entrepreneur, and ran for president of Iceland in 2016 (she came in 2nd).  We’re also just 4 days apart in age. LIBRA POWER.

Here’s the first of her TED talks. It’s pretty badass.

Here’s the second, where she talks about the need for more women to run for office.

So, the quote above – that’s been up on our fridge, scrawled on a piece of scratch paper in my handwriting, since the day I watched her first TED talk. I’ve seen that piece of paper every day, many times a day, for over seven years. I think about her words even when I’m not looking in the refrigerator – when I’m puzzling over something dumb-yet-totally-preventable happening out in the world, in my own personal day-to-day, at work, etc. And her words resonate especially deeply with me now, as we’re seeing the dismal, messy unwinding of so many systems – overwhelmingly male-created and dominated – that have failed us all, especially women. Media. Entertainment. Finance. Politics. Higher education. Technology. Food.

A few weeks ago, that piece of paper came out from under the magnet holding it to the fridge, and as I picked it up from the floor I thought it might be cool to get a photo, post it to Instagram, and tag Halla Tomasdottir while I was at it. So that’s exactly what I did.

Imagine my delight when I saw this response.
I’m Team Halla. What about taking her words as a directive?

CHANGE CATALYSTS EVERYWHERE. 

Here are a couple of places to start. Leave your ideas for changing catalysts everywhere in the comments!

She Should Run

She’s the Ticket

Architecture

When they were much younger, my daughter and her older brother spent hundreds of hours with tens of thousands of Lego blocks, building all kinds of crazy stuff all over the house. This work was Very Important.

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They first built according to directions. Then they took whatever it was apart and built something else altogether that, to them, was infinitely cooler than the model, the first thing. They’d never get the model back, but that didn’t matter, because they’d made this NEW AWESOME THING. Which was then almost certainly replaced by THE NEXT NEW AWESOME THING, often immediately. And next to it would be THAT OTHER STRANGELY HUGE BUT STILL AWESOME THING. Etc.

So. Imagine you’re a Lego-friendly grown person who’s been turned loose into a room where someone has overturned two giant tubs of mismatched Lego – including people and wheels and trees and all the other cool stuff they include with Lego now – and you’ve been told, here you go. Make whatever you want. Nope! No blueprint, no directions, no rules! Just get in there and build. Construct to your heart’s content. It’s cool. These are your Lego. Have at it. Bye! Have fun!

What would you do? Would you sort? If you sorted, how would you sort? By color? By block type? By size? Or would you jump right in and just start constructing buildings and vehicles and spacecraft, revising as you went? Would you consult the Internet, looking for advice on how to deal with so many blocks, so much potential? Would you put the blocks back in the tubs, overwhelmed by all the possibilities, and wait for your handler to let you out?

Architecture implies planning and designing. The architect is only occasionally the builder of a building (Lego construction excepted). My style has always been to not so much plan as to just start and revise. Sometimes I force things along (I just had a conversation with a friend yesterday about how forcing what you think you want rarely gets the desired results). I’ve talked here about planning and goal-setting before, and now I’m “suddenly” (haha) finding myself at a critical point with personal/professional projects, our house, my own self, and especially our family. Lilly is graduating from high school in almost exactly one year and a lot – A LOT – is going to happen in those twelve months, never mind what happens after that. Basically, the bins have been dumped.

I can tell you exactly what I’m doing right now. I’m sitting in my huge pile of metaphorical Lego, hanging out amidst the chaos and abundance of color and shape and variety… but have you ever sat on Lego blocks? Dang, you guys. The sitting can’t last, so I’m looking forward to architecture – to planning, designing, and then building/rebuilding, working alone, with Jim, with Cody, and especially working with Lilly on crafting her own plans, too.

LOTSA (Lisa’s Open Tabs Saved Aggressively)

At some point I’ll get to this article about Pound – new content sharing tracking tool

How food co-ops are bringing food access to lower-income communities

Create better copy by changing a word (this isn’t that great, but it’s in the tabs)

10 things designers apparently (freaking) hate

Trapped Creative

SOMEBODY PLEASE HELP ME WITH IFTTT. My brain, jeez.

40 free modern fonts

Indiegogo for Nance Klehm‘s new project, The Ground Rules

Pondering the capsule wardrobe concept with Unfancy

Breakdown Break Down at the 2 Degrees Festival in London

Obsessed with the Mixte, but just looking for now