The Dann Chronicles: July 🌞
Welcome back, sunrise.
One of my favorite summer activities is obsessively tracking the changing sunrise/sunset times. I'll pull up timeanddate.com several times per week and scroll my mouse across the Sun Graph checking for certain threshold dates: the day the sunset matches the end of the workday, the day when sunset happens at dinner time, etc.
We're officially crossing one of those thresholds now: the date the sunrise matches my typical wake time. There are only about two months out of the year when I wake up to sunlight; the rest of the year it's still dark when I rise.
Oddly, I prefer it to still be dark when I wake up. So I've been marking this date for a while. Welcome back, sunrise.
Hope you're all having a lovely July as well.
Wanna build a small town?
My brain just keeps coming back to this article, which is why it's at the very top of this month's link list. Let's say you and your friends pool your money together and purchase a suitably large piece of land. How might you go about turning that into a thriving car-free town?
To create a human scaled town we first establish what is a good size, and this is simply one third of a square kilometer, or 82 acres, or 0.13 square miles. 80 acres was the upper limit for a good family farm in medieval England, and it is still the size at which the most flexible and efficient farms run, both modern and more old fashioned Amish family farms. It allows a town where no point can’t be reached on foot in 15 minutes, and it allows comfortable living for a population of 3000, which was considered the ideal size in medieval Europe: the upper limit of efficiency and comfort, productivity and harmony.
There are so many small details that I recognize in some of my favorite cities, from shape of the town, to street layout, to the power of quirky neighborhoods.
So...who's with me?
Two strangers in the park
I'm officially a film star. Avi made this delightfully wonderful tap-dancing music video to the song Boy from Ipanema. You won't regret spending three minutes watching it.
Can you tell that I helped with the ending?
Oh so salty
I've officially graduated to having a three-salt kitchen: general use Diamond Crystal kosher salt, Maldon sea salt flakes for finishing, and a new flavor-bomb I'm calling "unicorn" salt (although it's better known as supersalt).
Typically, unicorn salt consists of:
nine parts salt
one part MSG
a dash of disodium inosinate and disodium guanylate
It's my new secret weapon in the kitchen, and I've been using it in anything that can benefit from a punch of umami, from vegetables to soups or anything in between. One of my biggest kitchen tips is do not fear the MSG.
You should watch this uncut footage from a 1958 underwater Atomic Blast, if only to remind yourself how horrific the technology truly is. The sheer power is terrifying, but it's the birds' reaction that's most haunting.
Me me, I'm the NFT
On a lighter note, I decided to mint myself as an NFT in an attempt to wrap my head around this new digital asset class. Say hello to the Spinning Dann NFT.
The shrewd investor might want to grab one now, as there are only 15 minted originals, and they're sure to appreciate in value, right? ...Right?
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Thanks for reading. Until next time,