A Commonplace By Tom Swift
December 2, 2016
A world in emotional order can plunge into unpredictable chaos with the introduction of one exciting dynamic. Such things can be like thrilling carnival attractions. Do not fear: Use your ticket to ride.
-Holiday Mathis, “Horoscopes,” Star Tribune, 12-2-2016
Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance.
December 1, 2016
The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong in the broken places.
November 30, 2016
Everybody has to fight to be free.
-Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, “Refugee,” Damn the Torpedoes (1979)
November 29, 2016
Sometimes the things that are wrong with something are the same things that make that thing great. That’s the way it is in life, and that’s the way art works.
November 28, 2016
A day without laughter is a day wasted.
November 23, 2016
What if, today, we were grateful for everything?
November 20, 2016
Do not presume to know what it’s like to live in your subject’s skin. Or your subject’s world. Do not presume that his [or her] worldview is your worldview. [Michigan basketball player Jalen] Rose was an African-American just-past-teenager from Detroit. I was a white, well-past-teenager from the coast. It would take work for me to understand him, or anyone like him. And even then, how close could I really come?
-Tim Layden, “Scorecard: Continental Divide,” Sports Illustrated, 11-21-2016
November 19, 2016
Rose [to her husband]: Some days are best forgotten. Today isn’t one of them.
-Emily Watson, War Horse (2011)
It’s a simple concept: we construct our internal reality — our experience of the world — in large part by where we put our attention. More often than we recognize, we can make that choice consciously or intentionally. Doing so influences not just how we feel, but how we perform, individually and collaboratively. It turns out that cultivating positive emotions such as joy, commitment, interest, pride, and love pays huge dividends.
-Tony Schwarz, “Overcoming Your Negativity Bias,” The New York Times, 6-14-2013