We are a newspaper family. We are, in fact, so much a newspaper family that the girls thought that everyone got the newspaper in the same way that everyone gets the mail. They were awfully confused a few weeks ago when we explained that our neighbor simply didn’t get the newspaper.
We get our local paper, The Bergen Record, and the Wall Street Journal everyday day. Until a few weeks ago, when we decided to curb the cost of it, we also were daily subscribers to the USA Today. On Fridays we receive the Ridgewood News and the New York Times arrives every Saturday and Sunday. Rob reads the paper seven days a week. During the week, I count on Rob to point out any articles that he thinks I might find particularly interesting. On the weekends though, I do my best to read my favorite sections of each of our papers. I read all of the Ridgewood News. I read Bill Ervolino in the Record and I have recently discovered and now love the Review section of the Wall Street Journal. In the New York Times, I will read the Book Review and the Magazine and the Review, Style and Travel sections in that order.
For various reasons, our weekends have been super busy lately and it feels like ages since I had been able to sit down and enjoy my weekend newspaper habit. This weekend though I had time and I found many interesting tidbits that I thought I would share here.
The Price of Poverty on the Developing Brain (WSJ) by Robert Sapolsky explores the role of poverty on brain development. Research has shown that prolonged exposure to a class of stress hormones affects the development of the frontal cortex. The article states, “by the age of four…the frontal cortex already reflects their socioeconomic status- the scars of deprivation (at one extreme) or the bells and whistles of privilege (at the other).”
In Through a Lens Sharply, (NYT) Dominique Brown talks about her life as a traveler before she began taking pictures and after. The whole essay is well worth a read but a section I was particularly taken with states, “I click my share of landscape pictures. But I don’t return to them; they feel overwhelmingly grand, and almost anonymous. What holds my eye now isn’t the whole huge Taj Mahal. It is the crucible of a lapis flower laid into a marble corner.”
In Spice of Life, (NYT) Melinda Josie discusses her relationship with her Libyan mother-in-law. As a writer, Josie wrestles with understanding the lack of books in her illiterate mother-in-law’s home. By the end of the piece though she writes, “I thought of all my mother-in-law knows: how to feed a family of 10 on barely any money; how to survive four decades of tyranny followed by a revolution. How to give a poor child enough wits and determination to overcome his meager beginnings and build a new life across the world. From all I’d learned in books, what could I teach my children about survival?”