Just over a year ago I was given a ‘community cake’. A cake tin full of all the ingredients needed to make white chocolate and blackberry cake. All the ingredients that is, except for one cup of sugar. It was a birthday cake and my challenge was to ask a neighbour I didn’t know for a cup of sugar.

I have to say my initial reaction was one of fear. I thanked my friend, but I was also angry that she’d put me in the position of having to follow through – you can’t do a PhD on neighbourhood sharing and then chicken out of asking a neighbour for sugar!

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Thankfully it's Thursday because my browser is positively overflowing with tabs of quality linkitude for you good people. Make sure you share it forward:

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I used to good-naturedly razz an old college friend of mine about moving to the suburbs. With a worried look, I would whisper that it’s a good thing people in his well-heeled suburb don’t know their neighbors, otherwise they would run him out of town as a dangerous radical. He always laughed along.

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In a surprise last week, the Washington Post  ran an article defending suburbs from the usual charges of being white, wealthy, boring, selfish, right-wing and environmentally-abominable places. 

More than half of Americans now live in suburbia, including most subscribers, so it’s no surprise the newspaper would take an opportunity to reassure its readers that they live in perfectly fine communities.

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Here is our first link roundup of 2011, we hope you enjoy. And make it a minor resolution for the new year to comment with your own link every week, hard to imagine one that's easier to keep!

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