Why So Curious? #19 | FEB 2021

Why So Curious? #19 | FEB 2021

We interrupt your usual dose of curiosity with a small announcement:
We have upgraded to a new home on Ghost.org! A non-profit platform designed by and for independent publishers and creators.
If you'd like to know what's new with the newsletter, click here!

We recommend pairing this issue of the newsletter with:

This month's little big question:

What are the most memorable little things in your life?

Featured artist: Ri @hyechocomon | Shamelessly featuring our own photography work to tide over this issue. Our featured illustrator will be coming onboard in March, stay tuned!

Every month, we'll pose a little big question for you to chew on, and share answers from some awesome people doing interesting things...

Most of us don't struggle to recall the big memorable moments of our lives. You know, things like graduation, childbirth, marriage etc.

But we aren't so good with the little things.

Like a particularly beautiful sunset, or the first time you managed to flip a bottle successfully.

The Happiness Research Institute did some research, and it turns out savouring positive experiences, big or small, increases your happiness. And thing is, big positive experiences tend not to be an everyday thing.

That's partially what makes them 'big', their novelty and rarity.

But that does NOT mean that there aren't plenty of positive experiences in everyday life to savour. And we at empori reckon, if you put your mind to it, you can probably recall a fair few.

In fact, that's exactly what we are challenging you to do this month.

To recall the most memorable little things in your life!

For us, it's the featured image for the month up above.

We were at Tokyo Disney Sea (aka happiest place on earth), and it was evening time. There was a staff on balloon duty, and somehow the soft golden sunlight happened to hit the strings of the balloons just right.

It was a ridiculously little thing: the strings of a bundle of balloons, not even the balloons themselves. But I don't know, to us that was the epitome of warm and fuzziness. That was the theme park experience in a nutshell somehow. Many small delights woven together and bathed in a magical light.

Recalling that moment still sparks so much warmth and wonder in us.

But that's us. What about you?

While you mull over some answers, here are answers from our furry and reptilian friends: Nya & Alan!

Nya & Alan's responses

Ms Nya- Chief Cat at Paw Cat Guide

My life is filled with smöl things. I like smöl, because then I don’t have to spend a lot of energy trying to hold the idea or memory in my mind. My favourite most memorable smöl thing in my life is a moment in time. It’s the time when I take smöl bites and finish my food. I even take a last few licks to clean the food bowl. My belly is happy and full. I can see them birds flying outside my window, and they keeps me company. This is not a time when they can annoy me. I feels the nice sunshine coming in from the window. It a nice day, I have only plans to stretch and sleep. This makes me feel like I am well taken care of, I has no worries on my mind. This is when I get my best sleep.

Alan The Ancient Baby Dinosaur

Hi, I am Alan! I am 65 million (and 2!) years old. I have seen the rise and fall of several civilizations. But the thing I like the most is going on trips with my hoomans - I have been to Kuwait, India, and Jurassic Park! I saw all the dinosaurs. When I grow up, I want to be the biggest, scariest dinosaur ever. Rawr. I like surprise glomping my humans when they least expect it. I also enjoy annoying my new cat friend, Kevin. I promise I will not eat her. I enjoy nibbling on my hoomans and everything they own. I also love nighttime walks. The things I do when my hoomans are asleep!
I like Queen music (Classic Rock, it reminds me of the fossils), because it makes my tail wag!
My biggest dream is to travel the world with my hoomans, and eat all the things. Cronch.

Share your memorable little things with us below 👇 !

🦄Corndex #019

Name: Te Awa

Species: Dance Company

Mission: empower people to cope with stress and losses

Moves: Raves (conscious dance classes)

We know that Acai bowls, Kombucha and the words 'celebrate mindful living' might ring some serious alarm bells for those of you who are jaded by the spirituality/mindfulness movement. But hold your skeptical horses (mythical or otherwise) for just another paragraph longer.

Te Awa ('the river' in te reo Maori) is founded by newly wedded couple Cait and Guy who hail from New Zealand, a qualified counsellor and carpenter respectively. Te Awa  stems from their passion for well-being and healthy living. Which sounds like every other wellness company out there, but bear with us.

What makes Te Awa worth featuring is because of what they do, or rather what they make YOU do.

Dance. 💃

Yep, you read that right. Not yoga, not meditation but Dance.

See, Te Awa is a space dedicated to conscious dancing.
(Not to be confused with self-conscious dancing, which is what occurs on every other dancefloor in this country.)

Unlike nightclubs and dance studios, at Te Awa,  the purpose of dancing is to feel good IN yourself. You dance for YOU.

There's something deeply therapeutic about being able to move however you like and not worry about judgement. Not that there is anyone there to judge you, everyone's too losing their thinking (judging) minds in their own dance.

In a country where every dancefloor, literal or figurative, feels like you have to be good enough to even set foot on it, a space like Te Awa feels like a sanctuary. Both from the outside world and the voices in your own head.

So if you're curious, feel free to check them out!

We thank you for holding back your skeptical horses, you can let run wild again.

Dance Trivia: Did you know, Dance is the OG flow activity. Some even say it's the oldest form of moving meditation.

🤯Head Exploding Read

Excerpt taken from The Beauty of Everyday Things by Soetsu Yanagi

"The Japanese word for 'folk craft' or 'folk art', mingei, is actually new to the language. Being new, it is often confused with tribal art, peasant art, or even the more inclusive arts of the common people. Literally, the word means 'crafts of the people'. It is meant to stand in contrast to aristocratic fine arts, and refers to objects used by ordinary people in their daily lives.

Among mingei objects we wanted to only include those with certain specific characteristics. One essential feature should be that objects honestly fulfill the practical purpose for which they were made. In contrast, look at the machine-made objects that inundate our lives in recent years, which have fallen victim to commercialism and the profit motive, usefulness shunted aside. Among these objects ostensibly made for practical use, there are many that are nothing more than frauds and fakes, displaying no attempt at honest usability. On the other hand, there are many purportedly refined objects that aim at elegance but succumb to bad taste, overburdened with needless decoration and meaningless frivolity. With these works utility become a secondary consideration, verging on  the enfeebled and morally corrupt. In objects of daily use these are precisely the characteristics hat should be avoided, for they have turned their back on the life they should be serving.

Thus in order to be called mingei an object must be wholesomely and honestly made for practical use."

😎 Tsundoku (積読) Corner
On the topic of taste, here are some curious finds.
THE GAP by Ira Glass
I think it was in the time of spring 2012, when I came across David Shiyang Liu’s lovely piece of work about Ira Glass. It was the most inspiring and motivating…
If you're a creative who can't stop being your own worst critic, this is for you.
Sensploration Film Explores Future of Storytelling | LBBOnline
Little Black Book, Director Liam Saint-Pierre shoots film with experimental psychologist
Ever thought about how our senses interact with one another?
Unlcok your senses and improve your life. Russel Jones.
While researching multisensory experiences we found this: a collection of Sensory prescriptions and soundscapes for living well.
Life as a Bokoblin - A Zelda Nature Documentary
Ever wondered what it’s like to live as a Bokoblin? Join us on this expedition!Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/MonsterMazeBecome a Member:https://www.youtube...
Finally, this masterpiece is one of the most creative and well-made piece of fanmade content we have ever seen. 10000% recommend.


If you enjoyed this newsletter, do share it with a friend!

☕ We also won't complain if you buy us a coffee

If you'd like a monthly dose of curiosity in your inbox, click me🎃!

Ri Chang
The intersensory workaholic who has made life their job. Also an artist-padawan...and kind of long-winded. 康復中的工作狂. 正努力練習認真生活