The 7 Most Enlightening Articles Published This Month

1. 10 Of The Greatest Literary Nurses, by Emily Temple

Walt Witman, Via Flavorwire

I loved this one because it's so randomly specific. The list compiles characters--both real and fictional--that illustrate the unlikely marriage between medicine and art. Walt Witman is first on the list, likely because he's the only male. The rest features remarkable women who made strides in the field of nursing and established themselves as talented writers. A few spots were also saved for famous fictional characters--nurses in classic works that epitomized both heroism and villainy. This is an enjoyable read, and an easy opportunity to learn something that no one else at the wine tasting party will likely have heard of.

2. Teachers' Lessons In Heroism And Healing, by Jamie Gumbrecht

Moore, Oklahoma, teacher Tammy Glasgow walks from school with her second-grade students after a tornado. Via Schools Of Thought

CNN's Jamie Gumbrecht explores the staggering amount of sacrifice made by teachers for their students in times of emergency and crisis. Gumbrecht recalls the teachers who gave their lives at Sandy Hook, as well as the teachers in Oklahoma who used their own bodies to shield students from surrounding tornadoes. She writes about the outpouring of praise given to these teachers, and compares it to the backdrop of controversy that has surrounded the occupation for years. She poses questions that most people who have trouble discussing over the dinner: "How long does awe last and what comes after?" she wonders. You won't be able to turn your brain off with this one.

3. How To Escape A Submerged Car, by John Galvin

Crews survey the scene of a bridge collapse on Interstate 5 on May 23, 2013 near Mt. Vernon. Via Popular Mechanics

You're wondering why you're looking at a picture of a collapsed bridge on a website dedicated to happiness and positivity. Understandable. I wanted to share it and the article it accompanied because I have a sneaking suspicion that people don't know what to do when they're in a 2,000 lbs. metal box in the middle of a river. I certainly learned nothing about this in driver's ed. Galvin, the author, provides us with a list of five clearly explained rules. Throughout he mixes an appropriate tone of urgency with an underlying message that even though the thought of this is terrifying, there is a way out. It's possible to save not only yourself, but also everyone else in the car. It's irresponsible not to read it.

4. How One Go-Getter Landed His Dream Job At A Hot Start-Up, by Elisha Hartwig

Via Mashable 

Everyone loves a good Q&A. Everyone also loves hearing that dream jobs are not exclusively reserved for REM cycles. Since getting a job has become as nerve wracking as getting into grad-school, this article merits a good gander based on the subject matter alone. The Go-Getter, Max Crowley, landed a fantastic gig at Uber as a Senior Community Manager. Hartwig asks the questions we should all be asking successful peers, and Crowley gives answers that illustrate a model of behavior that gets job offers. Filling out the applications isn't enough--you have to keep tabs on the people you want to work for. Crowley couldn't be a better subject for the interview, since he explains how he got the job at Uber even though his previous job was vastly different. His experience sheds light on the challenge for today's job applicants to be not only qualified, but relentlessly passionate as well. 

5. Why Coffee Is Called 'Joe,' by Zachary M. Seward

U.S. Navy Secretary/cup-of-joe eponym, Josephus Daniels, Via Quartz

We don't have to love history to enjoy this quick and informative story. The history behind the colloquial term 'cup of joe' is something you can use to save a conversation that seems to be dying. It's also something that will leave you feeling wonderfully smug. You know, the good kind of smug after having learned something that traces back to World War I. When U.S. Navy Secratary, Josephus Daniles went on a moralistic campaign to discourage vice within the Navy's ranks, he used coffee to help guide the troops away from what he considered "immoral." Check it out to see how his namesake became synonymous with the only thing keeping you from falling asleep on your keyboard.

6. The Mysteries of the Cereal Box: The complicated history of how a cereal box closes, by Paul Lukas

Slotted cereal box compared to an un-slotted. Via New Republic

Here's another bit of knowledge that you can re-tell between sips of wine and bits of gouda. Lukas' article is actually far more interesting than most discussions about boxes warrant. What Lukas tries to get to the bottom of is why, for the love of all things good, some cereal boxes have that annoying flap that ALWAYS tears and others do not. There are two ways cereal boxes close: slotted and unslotted (sic.) and they don't have official names; in the industry, they are either referred to as males or females. Seriously. All you gender theory lovers could have a field day with this.

7. The Psychology of Sales: Six Facts Every Brand Should Know, by John Wlaschin

Via uberflip

There is more to a sale than the best deal. Wlaschin, a professor of social psychology at The University of St. Thomas, and a social media research consultant in the Twin Cities, says our feelings are at the heart of our decisions when it comes to shopping. He explores the interesting phenomenon of pricing--who really can guess how much anything on a shelf is worth? When a price is higher than what we've payed in the past, Wlaschin says we are attracted to a good deal: if we can get the retailer to lower the price, we're probably going to buy, even if we spend more than the initial price we had in mind. Since enterprise comes in right behind freedom of speech and freedom of religion on the American priority list, Wlaschin's article is especially important.

If there are any great reads out there you think should have made this list, let me know in the comment section!

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