THE CITRINE ROOM
A NEWS & LIFESTYLE BLOG
- Animal Kingdom
- Monita Rajpal
We have all lost something in our lives that has meant something to us. Whether it was a person, a job, an object, even ourselves. But in that process, directly or indirectly, we will have found that thing that will have changed the course of our lives.
Blog Posts in Audio
Stories from around the world that have caught our eye and deserve a repost.
It's a race no one wants to enter or win but India and China are neck in neck with the most polluted cities in the world. India has 9 out of the 10 most polluted cities in the world. And in a country where the stark differences between rich and poor literally live side by side, the era of haves and have nots also means those with access to clean air vs those that don't. Luxury hotels and apartment buildings, malls and resorts boast as part of their marketing campaign, the super filtration systems being used to ensure a comfortable and healthy environment for all, all those that can afford it that is. So while the privileged can breathe in clean air, the rest choke on the fumes so thick, so opaque that visibility is at its poorest. It is dystopian reality. One where instead of finding solutions to benefit all, it comes down to capitalising on a commodity.
In 1999, during an interview with the BBC, David Bowie said, "I don't think we've even seen the tip of the iceberg. I think the potential of what the internet is going to do to society, both good and bad, is unimaginable." And he was right. It was no secret how intelligent and insightful Bowie was. His lyrics explored all that made us human, all that connected us. His persona pushed boundaries of what we thought was acceptable and opened our eyes to what was possible. But what influenced him? About 3 years before he died, Bowie revealed a list of 100 books that he considered essential reading. This month columnist and avid fan, John O'Connell releases a book that links some of those books to Bowie's lyrics. In doing so he shares with us deeper insight into a prolific writer and brilliant mind.
Remember that clap? The one from the State of the Union back in February? You know the one, where a million memes spawned revealing the emotion of a nation (if not the world). It would be an image captured of Nancy Pelosi that would show who really is boss in a room full of politicians (mostly men). As Speaker of the House, Pelosi is the highest-ranking female politician in American government. And make no mistake, she is not "one of the boys." Pelosi is a proud woman who defiantly wears bright colours and pantsuits (the latter was banned as late as 30 years ago), her "armour" while in the bully pulpit of American politics. And as the world watches the unfolding of impeachment hearings in Washington, the devout Democrat & Catholic says she continues to pray for her country, even for Trump.
rPhoto: Furkan Latif Khan/NPR
Photo: Markus Klinko
Photo: Lauren Greenfield
Photo: Daniel Dorsa/The New York Times
Photo: Moms Demand Action
Photo: Patrick Demarchelier
Photo: Pawel Czerwinski
Photo: Aram Boghosian
He is known as the Everyman, an actor who is able to portray the average Joe. An actor who is able to help you connect with what is common in all of us. Yet what is seemingly uncommon these days is kindness, which Tom Hanks has in spades. He is known for his kindness, his niceness. And despite the simplicity of it, it is a rarity, and as such, not a trait that is easy in a world that is determined to make one feel bitter. In one of the best, most honest, articles I have read in a while, journalist Taffy Brodessner-Affer writes with such eloquence about a man whose story we all know yet is so lovely to read again because the warmth it exudes permeates into the hearts of those of us who read about Hanks, who want to believe in the good in the world and are so comforted in knowing it isn't untrue, that Tom Hanks is really a nice guy. And how wonderful is that?
Shannon Watts is a mother of five. On December 14th, 2012, life as she knew it changed. Watching the tragedy at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, where a gunman opened fire on students and teachers, unfold on television from her home in Colorado left her feeling outraged and helpless. 20 students aged between 6 and 7 and 7 teachers were murdered. For Watts, as she describes in this interview about her book 'Fight Like a Mother,' it was the tipping point of living in what she describes as a country that was "broken" with lax gun laws. She founded Moms Demand Action. It was her way of taking control of a situation in a country where guns outnumber people and the laws to protect its citizens aren't strong enough. And in doing so, Watts has become the NRA's worst nightmare
Imelda Marcos, the name synonymous with excess. From the time she married Ferdinand Marcos, a dictator who while President of the Philippines, ruled with an iron hand, muzzled the press, stole from his countrymen, and took what wasn't theirs, Imelda believed she was doing her duty as First Lady to embody the persona of riches, a persona to which she believed Filipinos would aspire. In a new documentary being released called The Kingmaker, we see a woman who is charming, charismatic, and entertaining. Yet it would be those traits that would lure a public in to a life and a family that didn't see themselves as lifting their country up, rather those traits were a sheen that would hide their violent and despotic ways plunging their country into depths of social and economic despair. Imelda is a woman who took pride in befriending the world's dictators, as she continues to pursue her political ambitions.