Friday Inspiration 401

I hesitate to recommend music to people because music tastes are so individual, but I caught this song while poking around KEXP’s YouTube videos, and if you have or had any affinity for Joy Division or New Order, then you *might* be into Nation of Language. (video) (full live set here)

screen capture from Nation of Language - Stumbling Still (Live at KEXP)


I’m not much of a motorcycle guy, but I really enjoyed this profile of Bessie Stringfield, who rode her motorcycle across the United States at least eight times starting in the 1930s, at a time when not a lot of women (let alone black women) were doing it. 

This post goes a little hard on “look how cool the new iPhone is” but does give us what I think is the real story, which is “look how fantastic Reuben Wu’s light painting photos are, and also, he’s so good he can do them with just an iphone.” 

I love Martin Brodsky’s newsletter, Routed, pops up in my inbox, and I particularly love this week’s essay about improvisation, especially the scene from his childhood ceramics class, which had me nodding and saying “YES” out loud to no one. I would copy and paste it here, but I think that would be unfair, and you should just read the whole piece (and probably also subscribe to his Substack). 

My friend Al Humphreys told me one time that even though he’s done tons of amazing adventures (like walk across India on a whim, kayak across the Atlantic Ocean, et cetera), most of the companies who hire him to speak want him to talk about bicycling around the world in his mid-20s. What’s great is that he has never stopped trying to figure out how to redefine adventure and fit it into his life, while becoming a dad/chauffeur to two kids. He has a new book coming out in January, and it’s all about exploring the small map around his home neighborhood. It’s called Local: A Search for Nearby Nature and Wildness, and if it sounds up your alley, you can pre-order it here.

My friend Brody told me years ago that he didn’t drink coffee, because it didn’t do anything for him, and I assumed it was like when people said things like, “I don’t smoke weed because I don’t like how it makes me feel,” but no, Brody clarified, coffee, and caffeine in general, literally didn’t make him feel any different. We were in Italy for half a day once and I sat across the table from him as he drank a cappuccino, finishing it and saying, “Yeah, nothing.” Turns out a) he’s not alone and b) there’s some science to it, as detailed in this Washington Post article. 

Reductress headline: How to Drink Water Even Though It Doesn’t Have 28 Grams of Sugar in It

I made some new thank-you cards that have the F-word on them, and if that’s your thing, or you’re just curious, here’s a link to check them out