How to Lust For the Present
I've been thinking about Alive-ness.
We are all sleepy, tired, burnt out. Our crazy world hasn't been helping.
But I don't want that. I want aliveness. The people I most admire have a lust for the present.
They do all their future thinking and past reflection on the backend. But when they're in the world.. they're truly in it.
I admit it, I don't have much to say about the topic because I'm still trying to figure it out.
But if you have any suggestions (or ways) in which you feel the most alive, email me! I want to make a compilation of how to wake up and feel more alive.
Till then, enjoy this newsletter...
This Week's Embrace Your Lazy
My Question of the Week:
When is the last time you felt truly alive? A couple hours ago? Yesterday? Last year?
My Fortune Cookie Thought of the Week
What people should regret is not what they haven't achieved. It's how much they could have been alive in the moments in which they were sleepwalking through life.
🧫This Week's Petri Dish
A great blog/video on how famous director, David Lynch gets his ideas.
"Ideas are so beautiful and they’re so abstract. And they do exist someplace. I don’t know if there’s a name for it. And I think they exist, like fish. And I believe that if you sit quietly, like you’re fishing, you will catch ideas. The real, you know, beautiful, big ones swim kinda deep down there so you have to be very quiet, and you know, wait for them to come along."
One of my favorite movies is on HBO Max. Every mundane gesture in the movie is dripping in beauty + poetry. It's like the director, Wong Kar Wai, puts into film the feelings we've all felt, but there is no definition for.
Here's a great nerdwriter video about it...
Amy Hempel is one of my favorite writers. She's a fantastic short story writer who is obsessed (as I am) with beautiful sentences. She has beguiling first lines that seem to inexplicably draw me in. Here's an example:
"The year I began to say vhaz instead of vase, a man I barely knew nearly accidentally killed me" - The Harvest
But here's my favorite Amy Hempel line. It's the first line to one of my favorite short stories ever.
Tell me things I won’t mind forgetting,” she said.
Here's the full short story (it's only 10 pages and a great read):
“If it's true your life flashes past your eyes before you die, then it is also the truth that your life rushes forth when you are ready to start to truly be alive.” - Amy Hempel
Maybe aliveness is as easy as deciding. Decide to be alive here and now. Decide to be alive despite it all.
The strongest form of rebellion is a radical aliveness. Everybody tries to drug us into a sleepy stupor because it's easier to control cattle than people.
Resist it. Live now. Be alive.
I can understand if you find that cliche-y. But maybe the people who are most alive don't think about it all. To find the secret, we have to pretend there isn't one. And in order to do that, we have to take action.
I'll end with another quote from my favorite sentence smith, Amy Hempel, referenced above. It sums all my ramblings into a beautifully packaged sentence:
“We can only die in the future, I thought; right now we are always alive.”