ACTION IS THE BEST NOISE CANCELATION

Minimalism was a thing for me in 2009.

I loved the idea of owning “just enough.”

I also remember all the questions, the naysayers, the “yeah, buts.” A lot of people in the replies asking about the best lightweight shirt, or how many socks to own.

But there comes a time when the questions are a stall tactic.

There’s a time to do your research, sure. Buying anything for $1,000, it pays to look at some reviews and YouTube videos, but at some point, you’ve got to make a move, which then puts you on the hook.

When I hit the road as a bike nerd in 2010, I heard some naysayers on a bike forum or two (the internet was much smaller back then), but fuuuuck off, I was living my dream while you were posting comments on the internet.

Did I do everything right? Nope. Did I post some pompeous shit? Hell yeah, I did.

I did stuff and learned from it, a constant cycle of learning, figuring things out, adapting, and getting to the next challenge, writing the next chapter.

The online chatter is noise, and the noise goes away when you build up a nice strong sense of self by doing whatever the fuck it is you want to do.

WHY TAKE PHOTOGRAPHS?

“This is not a hobby, this is my life,” Kazu Nakajima

The Walkie Talkie videos with Paulie B are amazing. As my curiosity about photography has ramped up, I’m devouring stuff like this, just taking it all in.

And I’ve thought this – what if I’m a photographer in my 50s?

I mean, I’m an absolute novice with any and all of it.

Internet marketing stuff? Email newsletters? Editorial planning and all that? Sure. I got 20+ years of doing that.

But what does a year being serious about photography look like? A dedicated practice? A system?

POP UP COFFEE SHOP

Love this so much, from Tina Roth Eisenberg (Swiss Miss):

“This past Saturday I invited my neighbors and a few local friends to a “pop up coffee shop” in my kitchen.

The premise: Doors are open between 9am and noon. Coffee and tea is flowing and there are baked goods and fruit to snack on. Pop in for a quick hello or hang for as long as you’d like.”

So cute.

DON’T MISS BLOCKBUSTER

Like I mentioned yesterday in ‘TRADITIONAL MEDIA KILLED IT ALL,’ the quote that got me was, “(podcasting) started as a homegrown endeavor before traditional media got into the game.”

Then I read ‘You Don’t Really Miss Blockbuster‘ by Chris Dalla Riva, and something else hit me between the eyes:

“Blockbuster was also constantly maligned as the corporate behemoth that bowdlerized mom-and-pop video shops.”

Oh, yeah, that’s right. The town I grew up in had several mom-and-pop video stores, one was run by people I knew!

But then Blockbuster rolled in, and the mom-and-pop establishments closed one by one.

It’s like maybe these corporate giants who waltz into our communities don’t have our best interests in mind (see also Conde Nast buying Pitchfork, Bandcamp left in the hands of Epic Games).

THIS IS EVERYTHING

Ira Glass sums it all up in this recent interview with Vulture:

It’s just crazy to me that people are having a hard time earning money making something so many other people clearly want.

Well, part of the problem is that people aren’t paying for it, right?

Right. They’re accustomed to getting it for free.

That’s the hole in the business model.

Most people ain’t paying for shit.

There was a time when Limp Bizkit sold a million albums in one week. Now artists on labels with managers and lawyers are lucky to sell 50,000 in a month.

You used to have to pay money to go see a movie. Now you pay a few bucks a month for a few streaming services and never buy another DVD

Podcasts, websites, newsletters – free, free, free.

Yes, a small percentage of diehard fans support via Patreon, or Substack, or whatever, but for the most part there’s been more entertainment options that exist in the world.

Think about the 100 or 200 or 1000 things we read a day, and watch, and listen to. In a DAY. A MONTH.

I pay my ISP $56/month, and some streaming services. I don’t think I spend $100 a month on everything, and I can fill my eyes and ears with “content” every second of every day.

And we’re all paying that $100 every month, and more (much more), and a few people are making money from making the things that everyone loves.

Again, from the interview: people are having a hard time earning money making something so many other people clearly want.

What the fuck?

STOP BANNING TRANSGENDER ATHELETES

From A Quick Brown Fox program direct and bike racer Ayesha Mcgowan, re: banning trans athletes from competition:

Don’t @ me pretending to be a scientist, a member of the peloton, or even a savior for women’s sports. Women athletes are underpaid (if at all), under-supported, underestimated, and face a world of very real problems in the present that actually need solving. Banning transgender athletes is not helping us in any way. It’s cruel and sad and wrong. If you really want to save women’s sports, learn ways to help solve the problems we are actually facing

HAZE

The Canadian wildfires left a bunch of us in the dark. Not total darkness, but it blocked out the blue skies and sun, and you could smell the smoke indoors, and it made your eyes scratchy.

Though it wasn’t as orange as the photos below, it was still very unsetting and creepy.

I figured instead of linking to big media coverage, why not see what people have posted on Flickr?

2023 Canadian Orange Smog Wednesday About 2PM NYC 2312
Source: https://flic.kr/p/2oFEt8V
Photo of how things look out the window today
Source: https://flic.kr/p/2oFLC51
A plume of Canadian wildfire smoke darkens the Manasquan skies.
Source: https://flic.kr/p/2oFNyY9
Orange Sky
Source: https://flic.kr/p/2oFNuaz
Minni in the orange haze
Source: https://flic.kr/p/2oFK6RR

MAYBE DON’T DO THE WORK

From Devon Ellington, via Substack:

“If you’re constantly reluctant to show up and do the work, maybe this isn’t really what you want and need to do. Maybe you need to explore other disciplines, and see what flares your creativity with a stronger passion.”

This was regarding writing, but like any good writing, it applies to more than just writing.

Some people just can’t get into running, which I understand – I’ve been running for seven years now, and that first mile still sucks.

But eventually I muscle (or shuffle) through, and by mile four I’m like, “I don’t ever want to stop running.”

And I can’t remember a week where I haven’t ran like, every other day.

Unless I’m injured and can’t run, I don’t know, I’ll always get in a run. It might not be pretty, it might not be three miles, but I’ll do that work.

Core work?

Replying to my bookkeeper?

Playing bass?

Yeah, I just can’t show and up do those things most days. Whatever.