Category Archives: Beauty in a Wicked World

Something Beautiful

I found myself online late last night, later than I wanted to be. I try not to be on the computer after 10 p.m. anyway, but it happens. When it does, I don’t like closing the internet browser on a work-related screen or on something disturbing or sad. Instead, I find something good, true, or inspiring before I shut down and go to bed.

Last night, having already browsed my favorite sites of beauty and community, I typed “something beautiful” into Google and hit “I’m Feeling Lucky.” And Google took me straight to the blog titled “Something Beautiful,” subtitled, “When everything seems to be going wrong, something beautiful can really help.” The blogger says, on the About Me page, “When in need of an antidote to negativity, I often turn to beautiful things on the Web. I know when I have found something beautiful because I can feel my inner chemistry change almost the moment it appears on the screen.”

I didn’t even click on any of the links, nor did I plumb the 5 year archive (the site began in October 2004). I felt better, lighter, just knowing that someone else is out there seeking, and finding, the Beautiful.

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Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.

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Lining Up Pennies

I am naturally organized. It’s one of my superpowers.

As a toddler, my parents once found me methodically pulling clean diapers out of their box, lining them up along the wall in the hallway, and then placing all of my stuffed animals in a diaper, one by one. As a pre-teen, I would empty my big container of collected pennies and line them up on the carpet in order of their year. Now, I take great satisfaction in a well-constructed Excel spreadsheet, and even my writing talismans on my desk-side table sit in a specific arrangement. I moderate Crucial Minutiae’s comments without second thought, and took deep satisfaction from re-organizing the weekly columns.

When I started meeting professional writers in my early 20s, I noticed that many of them, especially the most commercially successful ones, were naturally disorganized. They are brilliant writers and thinkers who, when they go deep into the writing process, seem to lose all sense of their physical world.

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The Beckoning of Lovely: A Year Later

In May, I posted a video of The Beckoning of Lovely project, headed by Amy Krouse Rosenthal. She recently posted a new video with an update, a year after the original experiment. It’s short, but worth watching for its breath of fresh air.

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Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.

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And the Winner Is…

“Small Changes” by Jennifer and Christopher Gandin Le!!

Tonight was the Intelligent Use of Water Film Competition Screening and Awards ceremony, held at the Getty Center in Los Angeles. It was thrilling to see our work on a big screen and to hear the audience’s reaction. And it was even more thrilling to receive the Jury Prize, complete with big check and all!

For an encore, here it is again:

Written by Jennifer & Christopher Gandin Le
Edited by Matt Donaldson
Music by Liz Clark
Starring our brilliant friends and cohorts!

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Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.

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Tiny Knitted Things

Talk about 180 degrees from my enraged post on Sunday! These tiny items are more adorable than beautiful, but the human imagination involved in making them is very much so. They’re Tiny Knitted Things, designed and made by Anna Hrachovec, a knitter who lives in New York.

My favorites are the bats; since moving to Austin, I’ve become quite fond of stuffed toy bats.

boothebat2

Ahhh! Kawaii!!!

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Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.

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Hundreds of Lions – Erin McKeown

mckeown9/9/09, huh? It’s an exciting day! It marks the last set of repeating, single-digit dates that we’ll see for almost a century (until January 1, 2101), and the Remastered Beatles catalog, Beatles Rock Band, and the new Apple iPod are all being released today.

But my favorite celebration today is my third wedding anniversary with the extraordinary Christopher Gandin Le. Suicide prevention expert, exquisite photographer (still and motion pictures), beloved friend, and the best damn husband and partner I could ever desire.

For our anniversary, he gave me the gift of music from one of my favorite artists: Erin McKeown. Since I first heard Distillation 9 years ago, I have loved this woman’s music, and have had a total crush on her as well. She’s excruciatingly talented across a wide variety of instruments and musical styles, her lyrics are poetic, her style is fantastic (check those Fluevogs!), and her live show is always fabulous. Oh, and she’s only 31; she’s been making great music since she was in college.

Her newest album, Hundreds of Lions, comes out this October on Righteous Babe records, and to raise funds for this self-financed album, she launched a very cool endeavor this summer.

Photo Credit: Nancy Palmieri

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Sand Animation from the Ukraine

I’ve never seen anyone tell a story in this medium. I am so impressed by human ingenuity. Watching this skillful artist is worth 8 minutes of your life.

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Beauty in a Wicked World is a weekly column by Jennifer Gandin Le. It appears on Wednesdays.

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