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Mom lives the dream: quietly quitting household chores to see if her family notices

Practically every mom I know occasionally daydreams about quitting-doing-all-the-things. Sometimes the impulse is born of exhaustion. Sometimes it's the relentless daily tedium of cleaning, cooking, reminding, over and over and over without end. And sometimes it's the desire for someone else to notice that these things actually need to be done and someone has to actually do it.

Even moms who share chores with spouses and kids often find themselves carrying the mental load of figuring out what needs to be done, monitoring whether it's getting done, and organizing who's doing what, and reminding/nagging/harassing her family members until it gets done. Sometimes moms just want to let all of that go and see what happens.

That's what a mom who goes by Miss Potkin on Twitter did this week. Channeling the fed-upness of mothers everywhere, she just up and stopped doing household chores to see what would happen. Two days later, she began sharing the saga in a Twitter thread that's as entertaining as it is satsifying.

Letting go and letting your family sit in their own filth until they can't take it anymore takes patience and discipline. There's a reason moms generally do-all-the-things regardless of how cooperative the family is. We don't want to live in a mess. But she stuck to her guns.

For a minute, things were looking promising with the garbage being taken out.

However, the dishes still remained mysteriously undone. As did the laundry.

"There is a pan on the cooker with a single sausage in it," she wrote. "It's been there for two days. I can't look at it because it's turned the colour of the man that washes up in Cast Away."

Oh, and the downstairs bathroom is out of toilet paper.

Those who might feel judgy at this point likely live with people who are naturally neat, or just can't fathom themselves how someone could let a sausage sit for two days. But take it from a mom who let go of policing her kids' bedrooms to see how long it would take them to decide to clean on their own—some human beings are willing to overlook all manner of mess and filth before it becomes too much.

And sometimes they have to learn firsthand the amount of extra work such obliviousness leads to.

Hilariously, even though the dishwasher finally did get loaded, that's basically all that happened. Miss Potkin shared a video tour of the kitchen with the extraneous things that didn't get done or got half-done.

Of course, the negative Nancies showed up to voice their judgmental opinions about her experiment, her home, her family, her choice of husband, and everything else because moms literally can't catch a break. It's a silly, fun exercise to make a point that millions of moms can relate to. If it doesn't apply to you, move along, Nance.

"We do not 'live like this,'" she wrote. "This is a lesson in wanting to be heard and respected and not having to repeat yourself when things slip. We're navigating the day-to-day in extraordinary times and for me, the past two days have been funnier than anything else. I think we're all entitled to run our own experiments, be amused, push a situation to its limit if we so choose. No one needs to be lectured by those that have failed to see the silly joy in what's happening here."

And the experiment slowly started paying off as someone replaced the toilet paper.

But the dishwasher...

"We keep our homes tidy because love," Miss Potkin wrote. "We cook food and set tables and fill the air with scents of roses and fresh laundry because love. Love is patient but love is also fucking tired because she works 14 hour days."

"I know we are ALL tired," she added, "but I am most tired. Me. I AM ALL THE TIRED."

All the moms are all the tired.

Miraculously, it only took three days of being completely hands-off for her family to take note and clean the house.

Lesson learned. Mission accomplished. Let's hope it sticks.

Moms are not always the ones who pick up most of the slack in a household, but they usually are. And when that work is taken for granted, it sucks. When everyone in the house pays more attention and takes the initiative to tidy, neaten, clean, replace, launder, put away, etc., moms are less stressed and tired and everyone benefits. If it take up and quitting for a while to help the family see it, so be it.

Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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