Austin Kleon FTW:

The entry for “Contrary” is several paragraphs long. My eyes glaze, not over, but above — to the entry for “contrarian.”

That’s a word that usually has a negative connotation, right? “Oh, he’s just being contrarian.” But let’s read the definition, anyways.

“con-trar-i-an n. an investor who makes decisions that contradict prevailing wisdom, as in buying securities that are unpopular at the time.”

Contrarian as investor? Oh, I like this idea.

I don’t want to oppose the status quo just to oppose it — I was to invest in what I think is undervalued at the moment. (Like paper dictionaries.

Invest in what is undervalued — and maybe undernurtured?

2023, Week 26

I started the year off intending to do this weekly but Florida kinda happened. Let’s see if we can restart.

Album of the week: Maximillian Colby’s Discography / Have one of their songs on a comp with IIRC Hot Water Music and liked it. This is more of the same kinda post-hardcore stuff I cut my teeth on in the 90s.

Also terrific:

  • Episodes 5-8 of the 2nd season of the Bear was as good as anything I’ve seen in a while. I was a little disappointed with the finale (Ep 9) but 5-8 set such a high bar.
  • In advance of getting his non-bunk bed, we were getting rid of one of two crib mattresses A has held onto for fort-building. He spent a good 45 mins jumping and tackling it on the front lawn.
  • Maron’s WTF interview with Warren Zanes intrigued me enough to check out his book Petty: The Biography for our trip to North Carolina. Also picked up 6 CDs for the car ride from the library:
    • Born in the USA
    • Beyonce
    • Tom Petty’s Greatest Hits
    • Violator by Depeche Mode
    • Let England Shake by PJ Harvey
    • Spirit by Willie Nelson
  • Also listened to Against Me!’s New Wave
  • Watched Champions (also after hearing a WTF interview with Bobby Farrelly) and thought it was really good and genuine.

Taken after getting lost on our way to Munson Falls.


Florida ain’t all bad all the time?

Congressman Maxwell Frost on the cover of Teen Vogue. He's sitting on a lawn while smiling and wearing a white t-shirt and black bomber jacket.

Maxwell Frost, organizer as politician:

Frost has also received a flood of letters from people, young and old, praising him and proclaiming, “You’re gonna save us!” He’s flattered, but thinks this is an idea our country needs to shake. “I’m not a savior,” he says. “There’s not one person, not one elected official, not one politician that’s going to save us all. It’s gonna take all of us banding together, building power, doing what we need to do.”

Voters have long bought into the old ways of politicking where candidates say, Elect me and I will take you to the promised land. “When nothing changes, people are like, ‘Guess my vote doesn’t matter,’” Frost says. So he’s committed to continue being transparent with his constituents, not to lower their expectations, but to tell it like it is: “I’m not gonna promise a bill is gonna pass next year — I’m one out of 435 votes. But what I can promise is what I’m going to fight for, how hard I’m going to fight for it, how I’m going to interact with the community, and the way I’m going to be a member of Congress.”

Diane Ravitch // Florida: Will DeSantis Be Able to Hide the History of Atrocities Against Black People in His State?

The only people who would react to this history [of lynching Black Floridians] with a sense of guilt and shame are those who identify with the oppressors.

Most people, I think, would identify with those who were brutalized, commiserating with them as fellow human beings subjected to inhumane treatment.

The whites who want to hide, purge, and suppress this history identify with the oppressors.

The arc of history bends toward justice.

2023, Week 1

Album of the week: In Small Rooms by Disband / It’s not quite as aggressive as the stuff I usually listen to, but listening to it… it had the spirit of that 90s scene (even though its from 2003).

non-music highlights:

  • New Year’s Day family hike at Red Bog. Maybe gonna try a weekly hike.
  • Had a terrific visit with one of my college roommates, Howard. After eating at Reggae Shack we walked and talked about adult life crap.
  • Read Dan Sinker’s new blog and got 25 episodes into he and his wife’s podcast, The Hitch.
  • James Hollis on Living in 4D podcast:

“We can try and flee consciousness in many ways, fundamentalism is one. Rather than try to deal with the complexity of real life circumstances, on just fuzzes that overs and says ‘Well this is right and this is wrong. How do i know? Because someone told me so.'”

This bums me out.

My lasting memory of the Middle East — besides drinking w/ co-workers — is seeing Hot Water Music upstairs in probably 1997 just after I moved to Boston. I figured there’d be 50 people there to see this little band from my hometown — but I opened the door to a packed house of ~300!

I ran into an intern from CCO and we both reflexively said “what are you doing here?!?” Me thinking “how do you know about this band I though only folks from Gainesville knew about” and her thinking “you are sooo not cool enough to be here.” The show was out of this world.

I feel like I saw more shows than this but know (via Listcore 008) that I saw Gritkisser, Yo La Tengo (one of the few shows I’ve ever fallen asleep at (not totally their fault), Bettie Serveert and Lucero either upstairs or downstairs.

Small, great pleasure is after A walks across the street to school is to see him do a walk-run to catch up with a friend. Feels like he’s more his full self then, a friend, a buddy.

This iteration of 10thumbs took inspiration from Rhoneisms. Fittingly he captured my thinking better than I could articulate:

When the mask mandates end, you’ll likely see me still wearing one in most public situations. There are many reasons. Here’s some off the top of my head.

Respect. When I enter a store, restaurant, or even a private home, I may not know what the owner’s preference is. Therefore, out of respect, I’ll default to wearing a mask unless I’m told it’s OK to do otherwise and then I’ll make my own choice based on my level of comfort. It’ll likely be the case that I’ll opt to keep mine on and I similarly expect the same respect in return.