Onward.

pigeon-runs-errands
Pigeon runs errands / © Sam Wedelich

tl;dr: My last day at Storybird.

Longer: An unbelievable 10 years. What began as a handmade book for my wife turned into the world’s largest language arts platform, with 10m members in 900k classrooms around the world. An entire generation grew up on Storybird.

Incredibly proud of the team. My partner Kath, who made it all possible. My cofounders Kaye and Adam, who made it all work. Tyler and Sam, who made it beautiful. Suz and Paul, who kept it safe. Guinevere and Molly, for making it smart. Rob, for making sense of it all. Matt, Nicholas, Nick, Ben, Deryck, Paul, Sam, Ash, Jocelyn, and Brendan for committing all those commits. So. Many. Commits.

My hat to Andy and Tim for introducing me to everyone. Rob and Greg for the first round. Shana, Saul, and John for the second. Steve, Fred, Andrea, Esther, JS, Alex, and Jason for the third. And Dan, John, Shujun, and Angell for taking this forward. Audere est facere.

Mostly, though—to the Storybird writers, readers, and artists. All the courage I needed was in the characters you brought to life. I’m certainly one of them.

chirp chirp.

The straw is us.

The straw is the opposite of special. History has flowed around and through it, like thousands of other bits of material culture. What’s happened to the straw might not even be worth comment, and certainly not essay. But if it’s not clear by now, straws, in this story, are us, inevitable vessels of the times in which we live.

Alex Madrigal, writing in The Atlantic, on how we’ve allowed capitalism to hollow us out, even while we slurp our McDonald’s shakes.

On art.

“I love the idea of “problematic.” Problematic art isn’t bad art, it’s art that has problems. “Problematic” is an idea that lets us lower the cost of acknowledging and fixing bad and wicked things in our world. Without “problematic,” all you have is “bad” and “good,” and that means that any stain on a piece of art that moved you, improved you, opened your horizons and lifted you up is a disqualifier — being virtuous means that you have to reject the art because of its irredeemable sins.”

Cory Doctorow, reflecting on Molly Ringwald’s essay about John Hughes, #metoo, and how the implications of art change over time.