Quickies: When an ad goes awry, and “Radical” Mr. Rogers…

Plus what you can do about light pollution, and Cute Animal Friday!

Hello, all! I’m just barely catching up on what’s going on around me as I’ve spent the entire week firmly in “Grading Jail” because I still have poor time and task management skills.

  • Upscale stationary bike company Peloton spectacularly fails to get a positive fitness message across in a 30-second ad. As someone who just this week wrote about their own fitness journey, I am fascinated by the blowback on this holiday ad. Like Amanda Mull at the Atlantic, I understand what message they were going for… but the execution failed spectacularly “in a culture where exercise has long been regarded as punishment for the joy of indulgence, and where women are supposed to maintain an impossible level of physical perfection well into middle age, lest they face the denigration of both the culture at large and their own romantic partners.” But that weight lifting belt on my wishlist? Yes, I do really want that for Christmas.
  • Like many folks recently, I’m having a bit of a Fred Rogers moment. A recent article, “The Radical Mr. Rogers,” recalls his brief foray as something of a college activist (and young goofball).
  • Check out this wonderful new TED Talk by Professor Kelsey Johnson, where she talks about the impact of light pollution, and no, it doesn’t just affect astronomers. How does it affect our health, our economy, our humanity? Luckily, she ends with 5 super simple ways you can help reduce light pollution. WITH today’s featured cute animal, the dog whelk, a predatory snail that is threatened by the brightening night sky.

In our regular Friday tradition, here are so MORE cute animals for you via Muscadine:

Have a story or cute animal to share? Join the conversation on Discord or reach us via our Contact Form.


Nicole is a professor, astronomer, educator, geek, dog mom, occasional fitness nerd, and maker of tiny comets. She is also very loud under the right circumstances. Like what you read? Buy me a coffee:

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