Omnium Gatherum: March 6, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 6, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Portuguese language and literature on the rise in China” — Wang Qi, Global Times

    “Although Portuguese literature is not particularly well known in China, this does not mean that there are no Chinese fans of Portuguese literature. At the same time, there are also many people who are working hard to promote Portuguese literature in China and advance Chinese-Portuguese cultural exchanges.

    But another name that cannot be avoided is Fernando Pessoa. The great author is one of the most popular Portuguese writers in China. On Chinese media review site Douban, there are 841 members in the readers group for Pessoa, almost as many as the 1,289 members in Douban’s Shakespeare group.

    With more than 6,000 comments and an overall score of 9.0/10, Pessoa’s The Book of Disquiet is his most popular work among Chinese readers on the platform.

    “Reading Pessoa is like doing a nerve massage, very comfortable,” wrote one user, while another commented: ‘If you are going to leave home for half a year, you only need to bring this book with you.'”

  • Some Enchanted Evenings, a trio of short plays by Don Nigro, featuring Christina Augello, Mar 8 — Mar 23, Exit Stage Left, San Francisco [HT Datebook]

    Join Christina Augello—EXIT Theatre’s founding Artistic Director—on a exploration of three playful one-acts by contemporary playwright, Don Nigro. Take a stroll through the enchanted woods in The Garden, embark on a journey with world-renowned spiritualist Mme. Blavatsky, and hear of sweet love and sweeter revenge in A Discoverie of Witchcraft. An unforgettable evening of mystery, mirth, and a touch of the macabre. Directed by Amanda Ortmayer.

  • Wrestlenomicon! [Also], a crowdfunding effort by Arc Dream Publishing [HT Dread Singles Oops All Deadlines! Edition]

    Arc Dream Kickstarter Wrestlenomicon


    A card game of the Great Old Ones fighting over the end of the world. Cthulhu! Hastur! Only ONE can rule the apocalypse!

    Fire Opal Games and Arc Dream Publishing bring you the grudge match to end them all!

    Become a Great Old One and slam, smash, and obliterate your opponent. Wrestlenomicon is a throw-down to the doom. This furious card game of squicky battles sets up in seconds and plays in minutes—or longer, if tactics are your thing. This is the definition of brainy beer-and-pretzels fun, with plenty of tentacles.

    The Brawl of Cthulhu!

    Each deck of cards represents a unique Great Old One. The core game includes a deck for CTHULHU—the Ageless Abomination! the South Seas Smasher!—and another for HASTUR, the insane and unspeakable force behind the King in Yellow. More Great Old Ones are coming.”

  • High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experience in the Seventies by Erik Davis, from MIT Press, due in July

    Davis High Weirdness

    “An exploration of the emergence of a new psychedelic spirituality in the work of Philip K. Dick, Terence McKenna, and Robert Anton Wilson.

    A study of the spiritual provocations to be found in the work of Philip K. Dick, Terence McKenna, and Robert Anton Wilson, High Weirdness charts the emergence of a new psychedelic spirituality that arose from the American counterculture of the 1970s. These three authors changed the way millions of readers thought, dreamed, and experienced reality―but how did their writings reflect, as well as shape, the seismic cultural shifts taking place in America?

    In High Weirdness, Erik Davis―America’s leading scholar of high strangeness―examines the published and unpublished writings of these vital, iconoclastic thinkers, as well as their own life-changing mystical experiences. Davis explores the complex lattice of the strange that flowed through America’s West Coast at a time of radical technological, political, and social upheaval to present a new theory of the weird as a viable mode for a renewed engagement with reality.”

  • 7 years ago, Google set out to find what makes the ‘perfect’ team — and what they found shocked other researchers” — Gary Burnison, CNBC Make It

    “You don’t have to be one or the other. Having both pragmatic and strong relationship-building traits can increase the value you bring to a team. So whether you’re left brained or right brained, it’s possible to adopt both traits. Here’s how:

    If you’re right brained:

    Develop a strategic mindset. Know and understand what drives company to success.

    Be known for something. Do you have deep expertise in relevant areas? (i.e., financial acumen, scientific expertise or even highly specialized knowledge such as tax law or M&A accounting). Be proactive in mastering them.

    Practice tackling complex problems. This is especially helpful with those tricky interview questions that Google is famous for. Use those linear thinking skills to your advantage by diving deeply into issues.

    If you’re left brained:

    Develop learning agility. Instead of defaulting to the “tried and true” (which pragmatists tend to do), be open to trying varied approaches and new ideas.

    Find joy in ambiguity. Practice coping with uncertainty and making decisions without having all the information beforehand.

    Put your social leadership skills to the test. When was the last time you motivated influenced others or deeply connected with your teammates? You might come to find that you actually enjoy it.

    Teams don’t just happen by bringing people together in the same room or connecting them via Skype. When you understand yourself by taking a “good look in the mirror,” you can be the change you want to see in both your team and your company.”

  • Tweet by Aventura Obscura

  • Haiti’s explosive Rite of Spring: from pagan Russia to vodou ritual” — Lyndsey Winship, The Guardian; about The Rite of Spring / Gianni Schicchi, Opera North, in association with Phoenix Dance Theatre, Mar 8–Mar 22, touring in the UK [HT Alkistis Dimech]

    Opera North Rite of Spring

    “Saintus draws on the rituals of vodou in his first UK commission, for Leeds-based Phoenix Dance Theatre. His Rite of Spring will be performed in a double bill with Opera North, accompanied by their orchestra. Saintus was tentative at first, having never worked with a classical orchestra, but he felt a surprising link between this story of pagan Russia (the ritual sacrifice of a “chosen” girl to the gods of the harvest), and the roots of his own culture.”

  • What It’s Like to Smoke Salvia for Science. I was the final volunteer in the world’s first brain imaging study on salvia divinorum.” — Daniel Oberhaus, Motherboard [HT Slashdot]

    “Although I’ve had several unpleasant salvia experiences myself, I recently volunteered to be a participant in the first-ever brain imaging study on salvinorin A, the main psychoactive compound in the salvia plant. Only a handful of salvia studies have ever been conducted on human subjects and this study was the first time that researchers were able to watch the brain as it was tripping on salvinorin.

    ‘This is the first step off the cliff into the void,’ Fred Barrett, a cognitive neuroscientist at Johns Hopkins University and the lead researcher on the salvia trial, told me. ‘This will essentially be setting the roadmap of where future [salvia] research will take us.'”

  • ‘Be yourself’ is terrible advice. Take a better lesson from philosophy and me, a reformed loudmouth” — Leah Finnegan, The Outline

    “Luckily for everyone, I started going to therapy, and it was during one of my first few sessions that my kind therapist who gives me all of my article ideas told me that the consequences that came from what I thought was “being myself” could be avoided by simply not being what I thought was “being myself,” mostly because the former self was a huge asshole. Trying to be authentic did not reveal an immutable self so much as produce one — one I no longer cared to be.

    It has taken me three years to fully process this, but I think I am good with it now, which means I can tell you why “be yourself” is such terrible advice.”

  • Good Omens – Official Trailer; series premiere May 31, 2019, from Amazon Prime Video

    “With Armageddon just days away, the armies of Heaven and Hell are amassing and The Four Horsemen are ready to ride. Aziraphale, an angel, and Crowley, a demon, agree to join forces to find the missing Anti-Christ and to stop the war that will end everything. Based on the best-selling novel by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, Good Omens follows an unlikely duo and their quest to save the world. New Series premiere May 31, 2019.”