Krista Tippett: Brené Brown on Vulnerability (Nov 22, 2012) (On Being)
You know, and so, I've come to this belief that, if you show me a woman who can sit with a man in real vulnerability, in deep fear, and be with him in it, I will show you a woman who, A, has done her work and, B, does not derive her power from that man. And if you show me a man who can sit with a woman in deep struggle and vulnerability and not try to fix it, but just hear her and be with her and hold space for it, I'll show you a guy who's done his work and a man who doesn't derive his power from controlling and fixing everything.
If doing what you want is an option for you, you should do it, because your one of the few lucky people who can. And even if you fail, you will be in a better position than if you’d never tried. The competition probably isn’t that crazy. Most people are too scared to even try. Bad things can happen, but every horrible thing that has ever happened to me has added integrity to my art and improved my understanding of the human race.
“Some Other Time”, my favorite standard. The sadness and the space in the music is for me just the perfect accompaniment to the lyric: “Oh well, we’ll catch up some other time.” And you so rarely do. You can hear the loss in it. Resignation. So much of life feels like that to me, of being just short of something, not quite getting what feels right and what you hope for. “Some other time” suggests the future but it’s one that never comes, so it’s a future of thinking about the past. The present moment doesn’t exist here, and that’s where the sorrow comes from.
I don't think the issue is irony. I think that the issue is the cult of the trivial. And it only matters insofar as it makes people feel better or worse. I have observed that many people spend an inordinate amount of their lives devoting obsessive attention to subjects while simultaneously working to demonstrate that they don't take those subjects at all seriously. Not just that they don't take them seriously but that they couldn't possibly. This tends to be expressed in a tone that we typically identify as ironic, but I doesn't have to be, and the focus on irony misses the essential point. I think that people need a sense of narrative in their life, they need self-belief, they need to feel like their life stands for something. And I genuinely believe that the way a lot of people spend the majority of their time-- electronically mediated, participating in a constant digital conversation about whatever has captured the mass attention, and making fun of absolutely everything about it-- is just deadening of any sense of purpose or deeper meaning.
Eric Harvey: What’s the best way to fight cynicism, or at least escape it? (Applies to dealing with other people’s cynicism and/or one’s own encroaching fears of giving into it.) (marathonpacks Tumblr)
Cynicism is more or less the act of giving in to one’s basest insecurities and fears—or buying into those of others, it’s inherently dialogical, as is everything IMO—and letting them guide your actions. In other words, everything gets filtered through the “ugh” and “siiiigh” filters, and it’s impossible for one to do most anything productive when buried waist-deep in that sort of shit. You’re consistently pushing outward at ostensibly negative forces that are collapsing in on you, and you’re wiring your brain to think that this is the only way of doing things. Everything is always already bad.
Nitsuh Abebe: a quick addendum to that Lil B piece (a grammar)
His homemade philosophy is such that he can just wander around trying to be honest and respectful of others, and how they react to that effort is entirely their problem, not his. This is why no pockets of ickiness in the audience reaction feel particularly sad.
Susan Cain: The Rise of the New Groupthink (NYTimes.com)
‘To harness the energy that fuels both these drives, we need to move beyond the New Groupthink and embrace a more nuanced approach to creativity and learning. Our offices should encourage casual, cafe-style interactions, but allow people to disappear into personalized, private spaces when they want to be alone. Our schools should teach children to work with others, but also to work on their own for sustained periods of time. And we must recognize that introverts like Steve Wozniak need extra quiet and privacy to do their best work.’