Friday Inspiration 410

This is such a great film about a group of guys who have been playing pickup basketball on Monday nights for 50 YEARS, and their gratitude for it and for each other, and their understanding of the reality of playing when you’re 70+, but also … ok, ok, just watch this when you have 10 minutes. (video)(thanks, Jonathan)

screen capture from Every Monday Night - a short film about ball and life


I’ve been subscribing to Jillian Hess’s Substack about people’s notes/notebooks for a couple months now, and it’s really interesting. Last week’s, on Jim Morrison’s poetry notes, reminded me of my intense and brief dive into The Doors when I was in high school, during which I read not one but two biographies of Jim Morrison, which were fascinating (but also maybe a cautionary tale about alcoholism?).

I am not much for card tricks, but let me just say THIS IS HOW YOU DO A CARD TRICK and also that maybe this short video is not for everyone, including my wife, who basically asked me “what did I just watch?” as I was cackling through my fifth watch of it (her first and only).

This is a super fun way to present a two-minute poem, and a reminder that presenting your art in a way that feels comfortable is often the best approach, even if it’s while lying on your back. (Thanks, Beth)

I didn’t watch/listen to all the submissions for this, but I have to say a) it’s pretty cool that Metallica is holding a contest for marching bands that cover their songs, and also that lots of these bands are doing versions of early Metallica songs. The Auburn video is pretty amazing, with the added aspect of the lights (how do they do that?).

This is such a brilliant idea and graphic execution of that idea, and I think if you’ve ever researched a medical ailment online only to self-diagnose yourself with two to four weeks to live, you’ll laugh: Your 2023 WebMD Wrapped

My friend Alex introduced me to Harrison Scott Key a few years back, and I have passed on his book The World’s Largest Man to probably a dozen people now, each time confidently proclaiming to be “the funniest book I’ve ever read.” But his real superpower as a writer, I think, is his ability to cram sometimes a dozen jokes into one page while still keeping the story going and keeping you wanting to read, which is not always the case with people/writers who want to use a lot of jokes. Anyway, every time I see a new Harrison Scott Key story published, I do not question if I have 17 minutes or whatever right now to read it—I save it, and when I do have 17 minutes to read (which happens very quickly), I read it, and I laugh my ass off, and I make a little fake doffing-my-cap gesture to no one. Here’s his new one—it’s about Christmas, kind of. One of my favorite bits: “I could not shake the strangeness of life—how one day, you’re a boy, hoping Santa Claus answers your letters, and the next, you’re living inside a fiberglass egg with a loaded rifle and a pair of heirloom quilts from a village that Santa will never again visit, for it no longer exists.”

If you enjoyed this week’s newsletter, please consider supporting my work