Vulnerable by Choice

“In the safest, most boring country, the worst lone gunman shooting happens. The worst in the world, in history. But it will not make our country worse. The safe, boring democracy will supply him with a defense lawyer as is his right. He will not get more than 21 years in prison as is the maximum extent of the law. Our democracy does not allow for enough punishment to satisfy my need for revenge, as is its intention. We will not become worse, we will be better. We lived in a land where this is possible, even easy. And we will keep living in a land where this is possible, even easy. We are open, we are free and we are together. We are vulnerable by choice. And we will keep on like that, that’s how we want to live. We will not be worse because of the worst. We must be good because of the best.”

An important reminder from 2011 in days like these. (via ben_)

Don’t Forget to Remember

I do, like many of you, appreciate the comfort of everyday routine, the security of the familiar, the tranquility of repetition. I enjoy them as much as any bloke. But in the spirit of commemoration, whereupon important events of the past, usually associated with someone’s death or the end of some awful bloody struggle, are celebrated with a nice holiday, I thought we could mark this November the 5th, a day that is sadly no longer remembered, by taking some time out of our daily lives to sit down and have a little chat.

Remember, remember, the 5th of November
The gunpowder treason and plot.
I know of no reason why the gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.

“Everything I do is a joy. And that’s the way it’s oughta be.”

I wanted to live like a hermit, but also make it really cool. Like the coolest kid fort you have ever seen.

So while we’re all going crazy about the new iPhone, here’s a guy who lives in a kind of hobbit hut somewhere in Oregon. He’s called the “Hobo Artist” and the video is a perfect Sunday watch, full of interesting buildings ((Also, the Hobo Artist is playing a kind of steel drum called “hand pans”. If you have never heard it, this might be a revelation on its own. I for one am lost on Youtube. (And he’s a great graphic artist, too.) )) and insights on living a simpler life:

Coming from the photography days, I learned how to edit. And I think I have edited my life all along. […] The secret in life is: Have very few things – but the things you have are really killer.

I quite agree with his notion that “having way less makes life way more of an adventure.” Go watch the video here.

Maybe we need to raise the black flag, and refuse to participate in the centralized, American, plutocratic Internet, working instead on an anarchistic alternative.

Maciej Cegłowski’s talks are always great. So is this one, on the current state of the internet (and what to do about it).


You wouldn’t hire someone who couldn’t make themselves a sandwich to be the head chef in your restaurant.

You wouldn’t hire a gardener whose houseplants were all dead.

But we expect that people will trust us to reinvent their world with software even though we can’t make our own city livable.

Merlin Mann selected a much better quote from the talk. I also wanted to have that here.

“Compared to the industrialized information factories of Buzzfeed, Facebook, and Twitter (or even the NY Times or Gawker), what I do is handcrafted. There’s no assembly line. I read a bunch of stuff and then write about just a few relevant things. It’s inefficient as hell, but most of the time, it results in a good product.”

Jason Kottke, blogger