Update, Take Two

Dear DECORUM! Readers,

My apologies again for the serious delay in new entries here!  Some random notes:

  • Please send questions/comments about this blog to our new address, lena.juniordiplomats@gmail.com! =)
  • Gals, check out these resources promoting true “girl power”: Global Girl Media, an organization helping “young women around the world to find and share their authentic voice” in journalism and other leadership (http://www.globalgirlmedia.org/); Teen Voices, a magazine that fights for “improving young women’s social and economic status” by challenging, changing,  and contributing to media in a fresh way (http://www.teenvoices.com/); Girls For A Change, a great national group that “empowers thousands of teen girls to create and lead social change” (http://www.girlsforachange.org/); and the Seventeen Magazine Project, a blog that documents one girl’s experiment following all the advice of Seventeen to call attention to how media can misrepresent and mislead young women (http://www.theseventeenmagazineproject.com/)
  • I picked up the book Quick Spanish for Emergency Responders by David B. Dees at my local library recently.  I’m not planning to be an EMT, but the book seemed like a useful review of important words needed to ask about someone’s condition, explain directions, or alert people of an accident.  And indeed it is!  It also has a handy index of slang words, so you can tell whether you are being flattered, insulted, etc.  I highly recommend that folks learning Spanish pick up a copy if possible!  (Readers learning another foreign language: do you have any recommendations for similar books?  I’ll keep looking, too!)
  • Check back  soon for DECORUM!’s first interview, a post about apparel, and more!


The Thursday Three

Hello!  Because we missed the last Thursday Three, we are including three extra links today.  Also, in honor of the Chicago Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup yesterday, the sites featured here are all related to both international affairs and the world of sports!

1. The 2010 FIFA World Cup tournament begins tomorrow in South Africa!  For more information, visit http://www.fifa.com/.  (Also, check out this awe-inspiring ad for the games: http://www.slate.com/id/2256074/.)

2. Check out JD Walsh Basketball School, which is promoting social change and world peace by spreading basketball through India and other countries: http://jdbasketball.com/.

3.  Learn about the Olympics at http://www.olympic.org/en/.

4. Read about Nelson Mandela’s diplomatic achievements in rugby: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1143996/index.htm.  (Also, catch the movie based off this incredible story, “Invictus”!  More information can be found here: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1057500/.)

5. Cricket has also been used to promote diplomacy, especially in India and Pakistan.  Get an overview here: http://uscpublicdiplomacy.org/index.php/newswire/cpdblog_detail/cricket_diplomacy_and_pakistan/.

6. Additionally, soccer/football has been building friendly international relations for many years.  Learn how and why with this bestseller: http://www.amazon.com/SOCCER-EXPLAINS-WORLD-Franklin-Foer/dp/0061978051/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1276212477&sr=8-1.

The Thursday Three (one day late!)

1. Get a comprehensive, balanced lowdown on nearly any controversial issue with the nonprofit charity ProCon.org: http://www.procon.org/.

2. Check out the online, interactive Global Challenge Award, a program which “empowers students to believe that they can make a difference not only on their own lives and national economies but on the planet itself”: http://www.globalchallengeaward.org/display/public/Home.

3. Learn about holidays around the world on Earth Calendar: http://www.earthcalendar.net/index.php.


Dear DECORUM! Readers,

I’m so sorry for the recent lack of posts here!  Life has been really busy lately with end-of-the-school-year exams, projects, and performances.  Look out for new entries later this week.  Thanks, and my apologies again!


P.S. Happy Belated Mother’s Day! <3

The Thursday Three

(Sorry for the lateness!)

1. What if there was a strategy game that, instead of teaching players how to win with machine guns and full-scale war, taught players how to win with nonviolent civic action?  Check out this video game by the incredible A Force More Powerful project and the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict: http://www.aforcemorepowerful.org/game/index.php.

2. Give your mom a great gift and also make a difference with this Mother’s Day ideas from blogger Britt Bravo: http://havefundogood.blogspot.com/2010/04/do-good-mothers-day-gift-and-donation.html.

3. Find out how your favorite celebrities are making the world a better place with news and databases from Look To The Stars, a sweet site devoted to celebrity giving: http://www.looktothestars.org/.

Optimists Unite!

Dear DECORUM! Readers,

With all the challenges and trouble in the world that we see reported or experience first-hand,  it can be hard to stay hopeful for a bright future (and thus also to remain committed to making the world a better place).  When you need a boost of optimism to feel happy and to spread cheer, to feel empowered and get productive, check out Ode, “a print and online publication about positive news, about the people and ideas that are changing our world for the better”: http://www.odemagazine.com/.  Enjoy, and TGIF!


P.S. Got a favorite article on this site?  Got a recommendation for a similar magazine?  You gotta comment! [;


Dear DECORUM! Readers,

Please take a look at the new page up here, Lena’s Links!  It has websites for everything from donating to animal welfare (Care2) to renting college textbooks (Chegg)!  The page will be consistently updated as I add in more URLS and descriptions of each link.  If you have any suggestions for new additions, please leave a comment!  Thanks!


The Importance of Business Cards

Dear DECORUM! Readers,

In any ventures into diplomacy (and many other fields), you’ll likely do some networking.  We’ll talk more extensively about networking itself later. But here’s one aspect of it I’ve been thinking about lately: when you meet people you’d like to stay in touch with, how do you exchange contact information?  For a casual friend, it makes sense to reconnect on Facebook later or to trade cell phone numbers.  However, for a future business partner or mentor, those methods would be less appropriate.  A business card would be more suitable.

Business cards are fantastic for supplying your contact info to new acquaintances you’ve met in any situation, whether they are a older researcher who may give you an internship later or a student around your age who also loved the movie “Iron Man.”  They are also handy for entering free lunch raffles. [;  Make your own for cheap or for free with these websites:

-About.Com’s Free Business Card Templates: http://desktoppub.about.com/od/businesscardtemplates/Business_Card_Templates.htm

-Businesscardland: http://www.businesscardland.com/home/

-Great FX Business Cards: http://www.greatfxbusinesscards.com/

-Microsoft Office Online Business Cards: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/ct101043091033.aspx

Vistaprint Business Card Top Deals: http://www.vistaprint.com/business-cards-premium.aspx?GP=4%2f21%2f2010+11%3a23%3a46+AM


The Thursday Three

1. Find out how one good idea can change the world for the better.  The Pepsi Refresh Project is funding  “people, businesses, and non-profits with ideas that will have a positive impact”–check it out and vote for your favorites at http://www.refresheverything.com/index.

2. If you have younger students looking  for a worldview, check out country profiles from FactMonster at http://www.factmonster.com/countries.html.  These are also great for younger and older students looking for basic information on different nations!

3.  Need a political cartoon?  Search no further than Witty World, a center for all kinds of cartoons by international artists: http://www.wittyworld.com/.

Day of Silence

Dear DECORUM! Readers,

To be a diplomat–or to be a strong world citizen–it’s important to strive for tolerance.  The National Day of Silence takes place tomorrow (Friday, April 16, 2010) in schools across America to promote such respect for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students and to call “attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment.”  Are you in?  Get more info at http://www.dayofsilence.org/index.cfm.