Freshly Pressed: Friday Faves

As usual, we were impressed by the fresh perspectives, different voices, and mix of topics in the Reader this week. Looking for something to read? Here are a few suggestions:

And Now For Something Completely Different

My point is this — I believe it would be incredibly naive to argue that the Pope’s decision is a reaction to scandal or contemporary issues that face the Church. This is not a cowardly man running away from the moment but an astute leader ensuring that the moment does not run away from his Church.

This week, Pope Benedict XVI surprised the world with his resignation announcement. Readers at What the Blackbird Said appreciated and responded to the intelligent and reverent discussion about this historical moment in the Catholic Church. The piece, a bit on the longer side, is thoughtful and crafted with care. ”It is a heartbreaking decision that is incredibly brave and demonstrates both wisdom and humility. It is an example to all, and inspirationally encouraging in faith.” We also love this blogger’s voice and the variety of topics she tackles on her blog, and this post — quite different from her others — was particularly refreshing.

You Like a Bruce Springsteen T-Shirt in H&M, Then Realize It Isn’t Actually Intended For You

And then it hit me. Standing in H&M, surrounded by H&M’s core demographic, it hit me. This T-shirt wasn’t meant for me.

The forty-something blogger at You Know You’re Over Forty When . . . kept our attention with this humorous yet thoughtful post on finding a Bruce Springsteen T-shirt in the middle of H&M — and quickly realizing it wasn’t meant for her: “It was meant for girls whose parents owned and appreciated Born In The USA. It was meant for girls who probably thought that this was quite amusing.” And while she specifically recalls 1984 when Born In the USA was released — and her first real brush with the album three years after — the nostalgia she whips up in the piece makes us remember moments in our own past, and makes us smile and laugh because we, too, have been confronted with adulthood in similarly amusing ways.

Shoveling My Own Goddamn Driveway

I’ve read posts by dads who praise hired help because it gives them more time with the kids. I can respect that approach. If I had back every hour spent cutting the lawn or shoveling snow, I might have used it to have more fun with my family. . . .

But for me, I like doing it myself. I like the sense of accomplishment, and I like the message it sends to my son.

In the midst of the recent snowstorm on the East Coast, the writer and father at Undead Dad was able to reflect on what it means to shovel snow out of his family’s driveway, and how much of his pride is tied up in domestic labor. “I like being the one outside working on the house to make life better for the family. I like the idea that my son is watching me work hard, break a sweat, and get a job done.” Eloquent and honest, the post is a great example of what the blog is about: mindful fatherhood in the age of over-work.

Did you read something in the Reader that you think is Freshly Pressed material? Feel free to leave us a link, or tweet us @freshly_pressed.

For more inspiration, check out our writing challengesphoto challenges, and other blogging tips at The Daily Post; visit our Recommended Blogs; and browse the most popular topics in the Reader. For editorial guidelines for Freshly Pressed, read: So You Want To Be Freshly Pressed.