Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Josephine and Grace

A friend posted this on Facebook, The Five Most Bad Ass Teams of Famous People to Ever Join Forces....

...which made me think of one of my favorite famous teams, Princess Grace of Monaco and Josephine Baker, who fought racism together--not as dramatic as the other examples, but much more epic.

In 1951, back when racism was still wildly popular, Josephine was refused service at the Stork Club because she was black. Grace Kelly was so incensed by this, "she stormed out with her entire party and refused to go back. And never did."*  The two became lifelong friends.

Wouldn't you love to have been a fly on the wall when these two got together at the palace, when the tiara and the glass slippers were off and they could just kick back, two girlfriends together?

Josephine:




*  Kelly did go back to the Stork club once, in 1956.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Radical Abundance by K. Eric Drexler

This is the book I'm most looking forward to reading, when it comes out next year. Drexler, who wrote Nanosystems and Engines of Creation, is controversial and maybe 50 years ahead of his time on some things (he's "active in space politics," and was involved with the Moon Treaty of 1980). But he's also extremely perceptive about the ways the world economy and political landscape are changing radically because of the power of personal technology. (Also, he writes for people like me who appreciate the concepts but don't understand the mathematics at all.)