FEBRUARY 14, 2020

Welcome to Friday, friends! We're in awe of our cool history editor Christina, who dedicated an entire issue of her newsletter to the man she once argued would win in a presidential knife fight. HBD (observed) to George Washington on Monday! But that's not the only festivity in our holiday weekend forecast...

Roses are Red ❤️ Violets are Blue ❤️ Our favorite love letters ❤️ We curated for you

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! We’ve had love on the brain a lot lately (because Hallmark and CVS told us so!), so we dedicated our newest episode of Audicted to Romance—our podcast about our favorite listens in the Escape catalog—to stories that include love letters. If you love an epistolary novel, or you're just a fan of a heartwarming tale, you'll want to check out this latest installment.

Meanwhile, America’s pastime is (finally!) waking from hibernation

Forget blossoming flowers, sunshine, and seasonal allergies: the real indication that spring is right around the corner has arrived. This past week, the pitchers and catchers of all 30 MLB clubs reported to spring training with position players set to arrive starting February 15th. That means we’re only a few short weeks away from gracing our ears with the satisfying crack of a bat or the thwap of a ball soaring right into an outstretched glove…all while breathing in the heavenly scent of popcorn and hotdog grease. Sigh. We’re soothing our bases-loaded-in-the-bottom-of-the-ninth jitters with this history of baseball as told through the craft of pitching..

We took notes on this positively fetching breakfast of champions

Siba, an impossibly fabulous, impeccably groomed standard poodle, took home the top prize earlier this week at the Westminster Dog Show. The Best in Show pooch—who was the first of her breed to win in nearly 30 years—beat out thousands of competitors for the title. And she did it all with the help of a healthy, balanced meal. Before competing, the pup fueled up on some energizing grilled chicken sandwiches from a local McDonalds. Now kick back, put your paws up, and get your next order with a side of belly rubs (and Audible for Dogs), Siba—you deserve it.

This memoir is music to our ears

Fans of James Taylor have so much to learn about the folk legend in his new Audible Original memoir Break Shot, currently free to all customers. His recent press tour has been filled with gems like the one he shared with Stephen Colbert about becoming the first non-Beatle to join Apple Records. Oh, we want to know it all, Sweet Baby James.

We’re inspired by this powerful message of acceptance

Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade have long been blended-family goals, and now they’re inspiring families in the LGBTQIA+ community as well. The retired basketball pro introduced 12-year-old Zaya on The Ellen DeGeneres Show this week, announcing that his child is unapologetically embracing her female identity. Proud stepmom Union tweeted It’s OK to listen to, love and respect your children exactly as they are. This unconditional support reminds us of Jodie Patterson’s stirring memoir on raising a transgender child, yet serves as a crucial message for any parent..

Would you prefer this newsletter in audio?

If you love listening as much as we do, you might like to know that we made a version of this newsletter you can listen to, just for you. It’s our way of showing you we care! Subscribe to our audio edition of the Weekly Sound Off at audible.com/weeklysoundoff.

Speed round:

  • We miiiiight overindex on dinosaur news, but c'mon: this new species is called REAPER OF DEATH.
  • We're so excited to share that Audible is bringing you a memoir by football player and activist Colin Kaepernick.
  • What do you call a Millennial who's almost 40? 🤔 Social media editor Robyn shares listening tips for her fellow senior Millennials.
  • Parasite took home four Oscars in a history-making sweep! Find a listen based on your fave front-runner (including the night’s champion).)
  • We hope someone will write a story about these now-famous mice so they can join our list of lovable literary rodents.