There’s also the story of New College, at Oxford. In the 1800s, they noticed the old oak beams in the ceiling of their dining hall were rotting — and they couldn’t buy new ones, since oak had been over-harvested.
But it turned out that the people who’d built the school 500 years earlier had planted a grove of oak trees for this very reason: They knew the beams would eventually rot, and they planned far ahead for it.
The excerpt above from this piece really stuck out to me. It’s a fun story that’s a good example of holistic system thinking. I hope it’s true.
Tiger got to hunt, bird got to fly;
Man got to sit and wonder ‘why, why, why?’
Tiger got to sleep, bird got to land;
Man got to tell himself he understand.
Bokononism is definitely my favorite religion. I should probably re-read Cat’s Cradle soon.
This feels less like a playlist and more like an education about an era of music I don’t know very well. I kept having the sensation of thinking that I recognized a song only to realize that I was picking up on the part of the beat that had been sampled by modern songs… which is actually a pretty fun listening experience.
AKA one of the best events of the year in Salem. It is organized by Historic Salem and really marks the start of the Christmas season in my mind. I like having a little time after Thanksgiving to decompress before jumping right into the next holiday.
This year focused on the Derby St neighborhood with 350th (!) anniversary of The House of Seven Gables and Nathaniel Hawthorne playing a particularly big role.
The house was turned into a museum in 1910 by Caroline Emmerton who used the proceeds to offer classes and workshops to the local immigrant community. She is a badass and her story is really cool. Worth a further look.
Anyways, it was a beautiful day with lots of other great historic homes and stories being featured too.
I’m not super familiar with Hot Chip but I like this album and love this song. I need to get more familiar.
Good employees quit when management is bad. Bad employees quit when management is good.
I decided recently that I wanted to learn more about cocktails. Someone had recommended this book to me a while back and I finally got around to picking it up.
It’s great. One of those books where the physical materials really add to the experience of reading it. Highly recommend.
Heading into Thanksgiving, I heard two perspectives over and over.
One went something like “confront 👏your 👏racist 👏uncle 👏or 👏you’re 👏the 👏problem.” It was — surprise — mostly on Twitter.
The other was a call for putting politics aside and enjoying the time spent with friends and family. An ask to dial down the partisanship and remember that we all often have a lot in common. Bill Maher went on a rant about this on Real Time.
I see merits in both and I feel like we’re retreating to the extremes again. It is one or the other. Why can’t we do both? It made me think of this book.
It is hard to influence people and get them to change their opinion on something. Especially when it comes to politics in our current environment.
Angrily confronting an older relative who probably changed your diaper isn’t going to lessen divides. It is going to deepen them. Ignoring it all together isn’t a solution either.
So I guess—try to find another approach. Read the book. Give it some thought. Maybe bond with your uncle over a beer while watching football and send him a thoughtful email right after that explains why you see some things differently?
I don’t know the answer but I know we can do better than the proposed extremes.
I’m often juggling too many projects (or ideas for projects) at once. Combine that with a procrastination streak… and it doesn’t always yield the best outcomes.
“Prioritize finishing” is a new mantra of sorts I’ve been keeping in my head. It has helped me keep up momentum across tasks. It is akin to the “only handle it once” principle from Getting Things Done.
Basically, if there is a loose end wrap up or a project I can cross off the list – do it. Close open loops. Etc.
The next time someone challenges you to explain “white privilege” – make them listen to this episode.
There is something simple, yet powerful, about hearing that to go on a road trip African American families needed a special book to know where it was safe to stop for food or stay for the night.
I know there are much more horrific examples from the 1950s and 60s. But something about learning about The Green Book just resonates. It’s like the smaller, everyday offenses are easier to digest.
I don’t know. Listen to the episode.
What a perfect cover for a journal. I like to journal on my phone because I’m lazy. But I might go back and purchase this one though. If only for the visual cue it provides.
Either way – get yourself a place to work through strange ideas & impure thoughts. It’s good to live in private from time to time…
wrote the man as he blogged.
It’s probably my favorite Wu-Tang album *and* my favorite Beatles album.— Mαtt Thomαs (@mattthomas) November 19, 2018
Here are some fun facts about me:
- I am 32 years old.
- I have owned cars for 11 of my 16 total eligible driving years.
- I have never owned a car with an aux input or bluetooth.
I mention these things because when I was commuting by car and only had access to a CD player, I burned CDs for my commute. Even in 2009, burning CDs was a pain and I never wanted to do it.
So I listened to this mash-up of The Beatles and The Wu-Tang Clan a lot. Like a real lot. All because I had somehow managed to burn it into a CD.
It’s amazing. I never really loved either group. But I liked them both and I appreciate of the cultural and musical importance of each.
But I like this mash-up more than anything for either individual group. Blasphemous? Yea, probably.
Whatever. Who cares. I’m thankful for this mash-up.
I don’t know a ton about wine, which means I get the pleasure of learning something new rather often.
Within the span of a few weeks, I happened to hear a couple of people talking about “beaujolais.” I had never heard this word before. Turns out it is a region in France that produces wines. Makes sense.
Last night, my local wine shop was pouring a few Beaujolais Nouveau wines. And now I know this specific style of young wine is released each year on the third Thursday of November along with a corresponding celebration in the region. This is a good overview.
Anyways, it’s not my favorite wine ever but I like the annual tradition that accompanies it. Supposedly, the harvest this year was an unusually good one so I’m going to do my best to hunt down a few more bottles from different producers while I can. ‘Tis the season. 🍷
I pass this on my walk to the train. I’ve read a lot about morning routines – mostly in the form of “this famous person did X” or “do Y to be extra productive.”
But I’ve never really had a set routine myself. I do find that when I either exercise, read, or journal in the morning that it sets a nice tone for the day. So, it’s not a strict regimen but I do try to err towards certain behaviors.