The Warren & the World is Story Warren’s weekly newsletter, providing a round-up of our favorite things from around the web as well as a review of what was on our site over the past week. We’re glad you’re here!
Around the Web:
An Imaginary Town Becomes Real, Then Not
Robert Krulwich tells the strange but true tale of the town of Agloe in upstate New York. It was imaginary. And then it wasn’t.
- This is the story of a totally made-up place that suddenly became real — and then, strangely, undid itself and became a fantasy again. Imagine Pinocchio becoming a real boy and then going back to being a puppet. That’s what happened here — but this is a true story.It’s about a place in upstate New York called Agloe. You can see it…
This is such a fun read. I love little, intricate tales of intrigue like this. Read more.
The Career of a Lego Builder
I’ve always loved Lego. Chances are, someone in your life does too. This is a fun article, but it does seem to prove that there’s not much of a long career to be found in Lego Building unless you’re very, very good.
- Sixty-five years ago, deep in the basement of a Billund, Denmark carpentry workshop, Ole Kirk Christiansen conceived Lego; 560 billion pieces later, the company has defined childhood for millions of kids across the globe.
This is a fun read if you, too, were (or harbour in your house) a Lego nerd. Read more.
J.R.R. Tolkien’s Letter on “The Talk”
Albert Mohler posted a fantastic letter from J.R.R. Tolkien to his son about a topic that many dads are timid about tackling. You know, the Birds and the Bees thing.
- “This is a fallen world,” Tolkien chided. “The dislocation of sex-instinct is one of the chief symptoms of the Fall. The world has been ‘going to the bad’ all down the ages. The various social forms shift, and each new mode has its special dangers: but the ‘hard spirit of concupiscence’ has walked down every street, and sat leering in every house, since Adam fell.” This acknowledgement of human sin and the inevitable results of the Fall stands in stark contrast to the humanistic optimism that was shared by so many throughout the 20th century.
This is pretty stupendous and helpful. Worth a glance, for sure. He wasn’t just talented at writing about Elves and Orcs and Hobbitses. Read more.
So, if you’ve got teenagers, you’ll be enduring a marketing onslaught from the Divergent movie this week. This is a balanced (I think) review of the Divergent trilogy of books by another young adult author. Spoilers ahead.
- The trilogy, which begins with Divergent, tells the story of a dystopian society in which all the inhabitants of what was formerly Chicago are divided into five factions according to personality: Abnegation for the selfless, Amity for the peaceful, Candor for the truthful, Dauntless for the brave, and Erudite for the intelligent. One’s entire life is defined by faction, from manner of speech and dress to personal everyday decisions. It’s a society that allows little free will. Everyone must decide at age 16 during the Choosing Ceremony which faction they will ally themselves with for the rest of their lives. The day before, they take aptitude tests that determine to which faction they belong.
It’s so hard to find the right balance. I think this reviewer gets close. Read more.
Around the Warren:
Julie Silander starts our week with a beautiful piece on the threads woven into the culture of her family through great stories.
- The glare of fluorescent lights was only to be outdone by the radiance of expectant faces. Two rows of pure eagerness, flanked by shiny new leather briefcases. He leaned back against a table and surveyed the latest group of recruits. His stance was relaxed, yet always alert, as if ready to spring into action if duty called. His designer suit was completed with a signature power tie, red with blue and white stripes. He exuded confidence and authority as he leaned forward, paused, and began to speak. “Welcome to the bank. I’ve come here today to teach you the most important lesson you’ll learn in your year of training. It will direct your choices, your actions, your effectiveness. It all starts with one word. Culture.”
How are stories shaping your family? Read more.
The End and Aim of All Our Art
S.D. Smith introduces a beautiful painting by Sharon Brewer. Take a look.
What’s in a Poem?
Liz Cottrill writes beautifully about poetry and life-changing events.
- He is a poem because he was formed in mystery and has appeared, living and breathing in time and space, at once a whole person to see and touch in the flesh, and yet only a whisper, a hint of who he shall become, what manner of man in the spirit. Simultaneously he is, here in my hands, all he will ever be, while what he shall become, remains shrouded from knowing today.
Powerful words Read more.
Nothing: The Invisible Shield of Jeromer Romery
S.D. Smith writes and Joe Sutphin illustrates another tale of our hero, Jeromer Romery.
- Jeromer Romery eventually heard about how he had, once again, turned certain defeat into near-certain defeat. He had, mostly accidentally, saved the day. Boint Lee had won an incredibly, unexpected, nearly-unexplainable victory, all due to the snapping sword-point of Jermoer Romery. He had called his sword “Everything,” and it had snapped off at the end. That’s how they won. Everything is so strange. No point, but it saved the day.
The illustration is great, and so is the story. Check it out!
Something to Do with Your Kids:
Over at the Imagination Tree, they have 15 spring activities for your kids… you know, for when “Go run around the house until your fed up” stops working. Read more.
And Something Fun to Watch
Who didn’t buy Frozen this week? Here’s a little Frozen tribute — done in the voices of various Disney characters.
Thank you for reading. We’re on your side.