5 Friyays: September 14

5 Friyays: September 14

Hello, all! It’s Dr. Hinson here with my 5 Friyays for this week! As we speak Dr. Donnelly is finishing a whirlwind tour of Shanghai on her holiday, but back here in Pittsburgh, we’ve had a quiet week that started with an improbable first Steelers game. To be honest, we’re all still recovering from that. For my Friyays, I’ve decided to ask (and answer) some questions I’ve come across this week!

What do we do with a tie?

With the return of the NFL this week, my hometown team the Pittsburgh Steelers started in Cleveland, facing a team that hadn’t won a game in almost 2 seasons. What happened last Sunday afternoon is a mystery to us all, but is perhaps best described by one of my favorite things about football season, Pittsburgh Dad. You’re welcome.

Have you heard of the Channel Islands?

Last weekend I was watching Netflix (as I do most weekends), when I fell upon a delightful film called ‘The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.’ The fictionalized story takes place on Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands, located just off the coast of Normandy. The fascinating story of this film, that the island was occupied by Nazi forces during the war, prompted me on a deep dive about the islands themselves. They are British Crown dependencies, not an official part of the UK or the EU, they have their own currency, languages, customs, and operate on Norman customary law rather than English common law. I am enthralled by this discovery, and thought you would be too. Check out the trailer for the movie below!

Are we missing out on great employees?

Watching CBS Sunday Morning a few weeks’ ago, I watched a story about the effort some companies are making to hire and engage people who are on the autism spectrum. Think of the possible contributions all people with disabilities can make if we only include them and follow their potential!

‘Am I a citizen or am I not a citizen?’

Though I know that John Oliver can be a divisive news reporter for some, I find his lengthy explorations into key parts of American society illuminating. With my passion for prison reform, I was very much interested (and saddened) to watch his piece about felony disenfranchisement. His reporting begs the great question: at what stage have people ‘paid’ their debt to society? If we ask them to return to normal life, pay their taxes, find employment, and contribute, should they not have a say in shaping that society?

How can you measure the power of a book?

This is a theme that started with the aforementioned film set in Guernsey, where themes of literature, reading, and solidarity abound. Recently, I’ve encountered a WONDERFUL series of books by author Kristin Cashore. I am an unabashed fan of YA fantasy literature and these three books have leapt up my list of favorites. She creates a vivid and inventive world, with enthralling and imaginative characters and circumstances. In her three books “Fire,” “Graceling,” and “Bitterblue” Cashore introduces three wonderful, powerful, vulnerable, brave, intelligent female leads. These women struggle through understanding themselves, and how they can make the world better. They find comfort with friendship and love, but not at the expense of their greater passions, they fight, they lead, they change people and society. How I would have loved to have these sheroes when I was a young girl! Having just finished “Bitterblue” yesterday, I am still reeling. In her third book, Bitterblue battles the legacy of a horrific past, people’s contrasting desires to forget and remember, the necessity of giving space to heal, all of which made me think of my beloved Northern Ireland. Potent, endearing reads, that will sit with me for some time and that I cannot recommend enough.

That’s my 5 Friyays for this week! Dr. Donnelly has a special travel post for ya’ll next week as she’ll still be somewhere on the other side of the world! Happy weekend, wherever you are!

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