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In which John considers overrated fruit, Avenger superpowers, parents who don't fear spiders, and the best things to happen to him this week from the set of the Looking for Alaska show. Stuff discussed includes:

The Art Assignment video on Sister Corita Kent's rules for art and life: https://youtu.be/IRPyql3cezo

The Anthropocene Reviewed: https://www.wnycstudios.org/shows/anthropocene-reviewed


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Good morning, Hank, it's Tuesday.  Greetings from an undisclosed location where they're filming the Looking for Alaska Hulu show.  It's Question Tuesday, the day that I answer real questions from real Nerdfighters.  Let's get right to it. 

What would you nominate as the most overrated fruit?

For me, it's definitely 'Of The Loom'.  I just think massively overrated.  

Any good book recommendations?

I really enjoyed this biography of Rosalind Franklin, which I would show you but it's currently part of my very complicated tripod setup.  It's not so much a tripod as it is a sculpture, but anyway, there's the biography of Rosalind Franklin.

How do you stay happy when so much of the news we hear about is bad?

Oh, I don't stay happy.  I get really angry and discouraged but I don't wanna be like, merely angry and discouraged, because I don't think that reflects the whole human story.  Like, a lot of people got married today and wonderful babies were born.  God, I love babies.  I mean, not enough to have another one, but in the abstract.  My point is that lots of people made their like, best ever memories today.  Human life is vast and it contains multitudes and I don't want to essentualize it into one narrative or another.  

What is your Myers Brigg personality type and does it happen to be INFP?

I don't really believe in personality tests, but it is nonetheless very impressive that you correctly guessed my Myers Brigg result.  

What's the best thing that happened to you in the last week?

Meeting all the actors and seeing all the sets for the Looking for Alaska show has been really amazing.  Also, Vulture named The Anthropocene Reviewed one of their favorite podcasts, which was cool, but the best thing that happened to me this week was that my kids and I planted peas in the garden.  I'm very excited for my peas.

What are you planting in the garden this year?

Lots of stuff!  

How did you quit smoking?

With nicotine gum.  The hard part was actually quitting the nicotine gum.

What song makes you cry?

Sometimes, I cry when I listen to the best ever death metal band out of Denton by The Mountain Goats.  

I keep finding spiders in my bedroom and bathroom and my parents have told me they have no sympathy for my situation.  How do I get them to care enough to help me get rid of these spiders?

So I think the most likely underlying issue here is that your parents may be human shaped conglomerations of spiders, in which case, I mean, of course they're not gonna kill their own kind, so you just gotta live with your spider parents.

What's your favorite word right now?

Hermaneutics.  I don't really know what it means, but that's never slowed me down.

If you could have the superpowers of any of the Avengers for a day, which would you choose?

Is there an Avenger who has the power to think about like, approximateily what the response to an e-mail should be and then have a fully formed e-mail appear in the compose box, because that one.

Who's your favorite Catholic saint?

Probably St. Francis, although if Sister (?~2:20) were to be canonized, she would immediately become my favorite Catholic saint as explained in this recent Art Assignment video.

Are you ever gonna write a new book?

I hope so.

Have you ever considered writing a memoir?

I sort of am, monthly, in the form of The Anthropocene Reviewed.

Over, under, or in between?

Through.  As Robert Frost put it, "the only way out is through."

Alright, Hank, I have to go back to watching things that I imagined 15 years ago become visible.  I will see you on Friday.