To be somebody or to do something. In life there is often a roll call. That’s when you will have to make a decision. To be or to do? Which way will you go?
John Boyd, “Tiger”

i have this terminal feminine condition where consumption of media with any emotional depth does deep psychological damage. after watching gattaca i spent a week in a fugue state wishing i were a crispr designer baby. half a murakami novel almost hospitalized me kyle, tweeting

I love you, but you are not serious people. Logan Roy, Succession

If you resist sharing work you’re not happy with, you do a favor to yourself and your audience. Simon Sarris, “Photography Workflow”

my favorite tools for thought are techniques that enhance the duration of my attention. Max Bittker

I have always considered my life fairly boring by most people’s expectations of what a good or interesting life would look like. I just take great joy in boring things. Simon Sarris, tweeting

I don’t have a career - I’m not really a career guy. I’ve tried to educate myself, and a lot of my adult life a lot of people have wished for me that I educated myself into various careers, but I never did. I don’t do well with schools. I just want to work. Forgotten

I define love in terms of actions, because if I define it in terms of feelings, it seems either absent or harmful. Ran Prieur, “100 Things About Me”

Figure out which red flags are okay to ignore—really. I think people struggle between knowing when to give people a chance, and when people are out of chances. Katherine Dee, “A Brain Dump About Femcels And Sex Negativity”

Even in actual life egotism is not without its attractions. When people talk to us about others they are usually dull. When they talk to us about themselves they are nearly always interesting, and if one could shut them up, when they become wearisome, as easily as one can shut up a book of which one has grown wearied, they would be perfect absolutely. Oscar Wilde

Will therapy heal your loneliness? Is the problem really within you? These questions are hard to answer, because while they all contain handfuls of truth, they miss the enormity of the ocean before us. Willow Liana, “Where Are All The People?”

More and more, humor feels central to everything, the highest form of being, and I’m ever-more suspicious of folks who take themselves too seriously, or get up on stage and talk about their work like they just split the atom… Craig Mod, “Roden 079 (New York City)”

But I think we need to make a conscious effort to realize: every time is different. Even if you put the same effort in and make the same decisions, the world, the people in it, and you, have all changed. What worked before, might not work now. The idea that failed before, well - maybe its day has come. Tom Macwright, “It’s better to be naive than jaded”

Freedom of the press is for those who own one. A.J. Liebling

Those most worthy of admiration are those who have made the best use of their advantages or, alternatively, coped most courageously with their adversities. I think most of us would agree that people who have, say, little formal schooling but labor honestly and diligently to help feed, clothe, and educate their families are deserving of greater respect—and help, if necessary—than many people who are superficially more successful. They’re more fun to have a beer with, too. That’s all that I know about sociology. Ben S. Bernanke, “The Ten Suggestions”

If your uniform isn’t dirty, you haven’t been in the game. Ben S. Bernanke, “The Ten Suggestions”

I know this is a very unpopular thing to say, but if you find yourself wanting to be bad because everyone else gets away with it, then the problem isn’t everyone else, the problem is you. Edward Teach, “Why We love Sociopaths”

Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there. Nora Ephron, Wellesley 1996 Commencement Address

I like the term emotional debt because it captures the compounding nature of feelings. If you have any niggling sense that you are on the wrong path in your twenties, those feelings will just get worse and worse over time, and the consequences will amplify with each passing year and each missed opportunity to do something else. Evan Miller, “Start-ups and Emotional Debt”

When you are kissed on the mouth, it’s almost like being digested. Or, like, metabolized. Sasha Chapin, “Always Crush Me”

We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living. Buckminster Fuller

The highest expected value is a bit of reading, a bit of thinking, then your best guess. Robert Heaton, “Love the Details”

Thinking about things is a massively valuable and underutilized skill. Most people are trained to not apply this skill. Wesley Aptekar-Cassels, “Things I Believe About Software Engineering”

The axis from consumption to creation has always seemed important to me. Some people, I used to think, were innately oriented towards producing new and different ideas, art, beliefs, stories, etc. Others lacked the natural urge to create, and were content with experiencing whatever already exists. These days I believe a hidden factor places people along that axis: whether their childhood was tainted by fantastic dreams. Sid, “The Inner World”

But getting closer is worth it. That’s all human progress is. Getting closer to win-wins. Getting as many people winning as possible. That’s literally the definition of civilization. “How civilized is your society?” is just another way of saying “how much of your society’s interactions are win wins for the broadest number of people?” Forgotten

I mean your sister killing herself because she saw a prettier version of herself in her pocket mirror and went insane from grief. Egg Report, “An Introduction To, How to Stop Hurting Yourself by Jerking Off With an Electric Cattle Prod”

It is obvious to me that a metaphysical transcendental ultimate power, is eternal love. Because that’s what hugging a girl you like a lot feels like. Egg Report, “Towards a Metaphysics of Power”

Try to give a comprehensive, consistent and universal account of ethics, epistemology or aesthetics.  You will fail, and after failing you might do one of 3 things: engage in a fundamentalist, dogmatic defense of a partial answer; succumb to nihilist despair; or realize that your reason and language were totally inadequate for the problem and move on. Because what you really encountered was not the absence of truth, beauty, or moral standards in the world but your own failure to give a coherent description of them. EXISTENTIALPERVERT69, “The Systematic Valley”

The art of strangling a woman is to not strangle her at all. You just put your hand on her throat, and let her do the strangling herself. Egg Report, WHY I AM SUCH A GREAT LOVER

I’m not good looking. I’ve tortured myself for it, and I’ve tried not doing that. Not doing it is the way to go. Katherine Dee, “The Return of the Advice Column”

I don’t trust advice that causes that kind of sudden red-pill effect. I prefer deceptively simple-sounding advice that takes years to sink in. Venkatesh Rao, The Breaking Smart AMA, Part 2

Every time we say nature is beautiful, we are saying a prayer, fingering our worry beads. Camille Paglia, “Sexual Personae”

The ultimate touchstone of friendship is not improvement, neither of the other nor of the self. The ultimate touchstone is witness, the privilege of having been seen by someone, and the equal privilege of being granted the sight of the essence of another, to have walked with them, and to have believed in them, and sometimes, just to have accompanied them, for however brief a span, on a journey impossible to accomplish alone. David Whyte, “Consolations”

Sometimes I find myself dragging my feet to work. I procrastinate, like most of us do when we’re left to our own devices. But then I think to myself “the work is the work, and is nothing more than the work. Cedric Chen, “Don’t Beat Yourself Up Over Self-Directed Work”

This is the classic analytic mistake: the belief that if you can partition a space with words then you’ve made a meaningful distinction. Crispy Chicken, “Functionally Pragmatic Salesmanship”

But of course there are all different kinds of freedom, and the kind that is most precious you will not hear much talk about much in the great outside world of wanting and achieving….The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day. DFW, “This is Water”

It is bad to do your analysis of media in terms of undifferentiated “content”…Real creative humans don’t tend to “create” “content”. They write essays, sing, do sketch comedy, dance, take photographs, etc. Maya, Takes

Which will never happen: your cracked-open chest demands unconditional love, and you don’t want unconditional love, it’s too easy, you want a challenge, a test, something you can point to and say “THIS IS IT! THIS IS IT! THIS IS THE PROOF THAT I AM A VALUABLE HUMAN BEING!” Hotel Concierge, “How To Be Attractive”

There is no form of love that is not unearned. It feels like a miracle because it makes no sense, and when it feels like a tragedy, that tragedy also proceeds from the inability to control love or make it make sense. Helena Fitzgerald, “love and slush puddles”

I resent the power that the sexual instinct has over us; I see it ruining lives, disordering states, making agitated apes of would-be philosophers; and I can understand why past civilizations have labored, by might and myth, to build dams against that swelling surge. Will Durant, “Fallen Leaves”

When men use women in prostitution, they are expressing a pure hatred for the female body. I want you to feel the delicate tissues in her body that are being misused. I want you to feel what it feels like when it happens over and over and over and over and over and over and over again: because that’s what prostitution is. The repetition will kill you, even if the man doesn’t Forgotten