NOTE FROM SKIMM HQ: Yesterday we made a big mistake. We said “Your” when we meant to say “You’re.” Are thoughts our with all those affected by this tragedy. (We kid)

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Required Reading for Today: Storytelling, Brains, and Saving the World

Telling Tales With a Tear and a Smile, New York Times, featuring my storytelling teacher Adam Wade, who is a Moth champion with unconditional love for all of his students and the art of storytelling. It’s incredible what power a good story can have on the audience and on the orator.

The Make-Your-Own Schoolhouse, New York Times, featuring the Brooklyn Brainery, a skill-sharing adult learning center for anything and everything, where I have had the pleasure of both taking and teaching courses. This model is going to spread, and the Brainery is on the forefront.

Nobody Goes It Alone, Huffington Post, written by Kirsten Lodal, a friend and mentor who is the Executive Director for LIFT, a nonprofit that I have been involved with since 2004. If you’re looking for a “wisdom” quote to inspire you and share with others, check out the last paragraph. Brilliant.

Trayvon Martin, God bless him, an innocent kid, a wonderful kid, a box of Skittles in his hands. He didn’t deserve to die. But I bet you money, if he didn’t have that hoodie on, that nutty neighborhood watch guy wouldn’t have responded in that violent and aggressive way.

Geraldo Rivera, Fox News host

You can’t blame a hoodie; you just can’t. But, perhaps that’s the sad reality. Instead of following this statement by encouraging parents not to let their kids outside in hoodies, maybe we should change the conversation and culture. And start with justice; why is George Zimmerman not behind bars? is a starting point, speaking out in our communities about violence and bias is the next step, and acting with thought and acknowledgement of consequences is the obvious third step and responsibility of all of us as Americans. Without showing outrage and being the best people we can be in our own lives, the public discourse and culture can’t change, and this could happen again. I don’t want that for us…do you?

OUR TIME translates the news

  • 41% of Americans believe that young adults have been hit the hardest by the recession.

  • Only a third of 18-34 year olds rate their financial situation as “excellent” or “good.”

  • Young adults working full time have median weekly earnings of $448, about 6 percent less than in 2007.

Why we should care: The prospects for our generation appear bleak, with income declining, high joblessness, and significant debt from credit cards and college. Even older generations agree that we’ve been dealt a lousy deck of cards.

(via today’s Translation)

OUR TIME uses, facts, brevity, and wit to summarize current events and news in ways that provoke dialogue and potentially catalyze action. It’s going to be the next big thing; I’m calling it now. Join the movement!

The struggle for justice doesn’t end with me. This struggle is for all the Troy Davises who came before me and all the ones who will come after me. I’m in good spirits and I’m prayerful and at peace. But I will not stop fighting until I’ve taken my last breath.

Troy Davis

I’m so saddened by how our justice system failed. There was far too much doubt for his execution to be justified, and the onus is now on us, the American public, to either change the judicial process with respect to the death penalty or to legislatively get rid of it all together. False positives should not be an option.

This is gross and stupid and beyond irksome.

(Grown) Kids, here’s a tip: suing your parents for bad birthday cards and no care packages at college isn’t kosher. At all. What’s your problem? Stop whining. Or if you must, take revenge, but don’t waste public resources in the court system, because your case is absolutely stupid.

[editor’s note: my care packages contained vitamins, newspapers, and bad jokes. but these are the things give you something to talk about on the next mandatory call home that evening. (most people) learn to deal with it.]

This is gross and stupid and beyond irksome.

A game of telephone.

An hour ago, a few tweets had eyewitness accounts and suspicions and questions flying around the Twitter. Was it a jumper? A bomb? A crazy gunman who had fired shots? A husband holding his wife hostage? In the Flatiron building? While I am in full support of receiving news on Twitter (and getting it sooner than anywhere else!), it’s also a reminder that it’s a double-edged sword, because the rumor mill that is Twitter resembles a game of telephone, in which there are often resemblances to truth but things that just got sincerely twisted.

Even when people know what’s true and what’s not quite accurate, they still have to build on all of the information to participate in the conversation. See, this is tagged #flatiron!

Hey, I’m all for it. It’s just crazy to watch a few tweets plus hardcore police involvement snowball into something epic.

A game of telephone.