Friday Inspiration 424

Although I think the title of this is a teeny bit drastic, and maybe we should just “focus” on wonder and focus less on happiness, instead of giving up on happiness—but I love the idea here. (video)

thumbnail from Give up on happiness. Go hard at wonder | Monica Parker for Big Think+


Thanks to everyone who completed last week’s survey! I ended up with way more responses than I thought I’d get (1400+), and I’m slowly making my way through your comments and suggestions. A few people were interested in the survey results, so here are some of them:

  • Readers mostly live in the U.S. (81.1%), and the U.S. time zone breakdown is: Eastern (30.3%), Mountain (27.7%), Pacific (25.4%), Central (15.3%), and Alaska and Hawaii Time each less than 1%.
  • Outside the U.S., 6.8% of readers live in Canada, 4.2% readers live in the U.K., 3.2% in Australia and New Zealand, and a smattering of folks live in Germany, Austria, France, Sweden, Switzerland, Norway, The Netherlands, Spain, Denmark, Belgium, Japan, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Argentina, Hungary, Mexico, Romania, Indonesia, Ireland, Spain, South Africa, UAE, Croatia, Benin, Poland, Peru, Italy, Luxembourg, Brazil, and Hong Kong.
  • Readership is 58.9% men, 39.7% women, 0.7% non-binary, and 0.7% prefer not to say.
  • Age group wise, the largest group is 35-44 years of age (35.6%), followed by an exact tie between 25-34 years (22.1%) and 45-54 years old (22.1%), and then 55-64 (13.3%), 65+ (5.1%), and 16-24 years old (1.7%).
  • Overall, the majority of respondents are OK with the current number of emails (one each Friday, and two essays or stories each month), and in general, the content seems to be working for most folks (although there were many good suggestions in what I’ve read so far)
  • 95.3% of you like outdoors and adventure topics in the newsletter, 77.5% of you like the art/creativity/culture/literature content, and 62.6% of you like the running stuff (duly noted on that last one!).
  • Nobody likes paywalled links (my apologies, some weeks I forget to track down gift links)
  • Most people think the ads aren’t very relevant, and those people are also correct, so I’m stopping those, and am hoping to find a way sometime this year to get a more relevant sponsor for the newsletter
  • A few people said I should be less shy about promoting myself and telling people how to support the newsletter/my other stuff (and someone else said I should look to Austin Kleon and my friend Al Humphreys to see how they do it). And as much as I feel like I mention it too often, those people are probably right. So here:
    If this newsletter serves as a sort of friend that introduces you to some fun stuff every Friday, or every other Friday, consider buying that friend a coffee once a month via Patreon. I do all sorts of behind-the-scenes stuff in my Patreon updates, like book recommendations, and in the coming months, an explanation of why articles are titled differently, and a fun/funny/ridiculous story about copyright infringement. So:


Ok then:

If you enjoyed Ryan Gosling’s performance of “I’m Just Ken” at the Oscars, you will probably also enjoy this very detailed breakdown of why it was so well-done, right down to Ryan Gosling worrying about the camera operator being OK with having his hand kissed.

I don’t know how old this kid is, but I agree with everything he says in this passionate endorsement of reading, and I think I can say this whole performance is objectively cute, and if you don’t agree, then I’m very sorry.

I have not quite yet pulled the trigger on buying Kevin Kelly’s book Excellent Advice for Living: Wisdom I Wish I’d Known Earlier, but I think this excerpt Jason Kottke shared, which he titled “Don’t Be the Best. Be the Only,” is probably going to push me over the edge.

In my never-ending search for “music to sort of listen to while working,” I have started to get really into DJ sets, which are often actual live videos of DJs in clubs or lounges. I rarely ever watch more than a few seconds of the video (because I’m busy in the 37 other browser tabs I have open, just like you!), but I think it makes the music a little more endearing? Anyway, here’s one I’ve been looping this week: Jazzy House Session By ROSSA at Lounge Bar in Paris

There’s this subreddit called “Contagious Laughter,” and it’s often quite funny, but I think this is actually one of the funniest clips I’ve ever seen on it—I don’t even know what these guys set out to do, and I am not sure they did either, but it just keeps escalating.

You know you hit it out of the park when you call your podcast “60 Songs That Explain the 90s” and then you have to extend it to 90 songs, and then 120 songs. I would call myself a huge fan of Rob Harvila and his podcast, and I could not be happier for him, and I also could not be happier for the rest of us, now that The Ringer put all 120 episodes on this page, organized by genre.

So the Onion is satire, but some of my favorite Onion articles/headlines of all time are the ones that are actually true—like “Ice Cream Eaten to Quench Thirst.” And this one also feels very true, although I’m a little self-conscious about saying that.