Van Morrison's Into the Mystic

We were born before the wind
Also younger than the sun
Ere the bonnie boat was won
As we sailed into the mystic

Hark, now hear the sailors cry
Smell the sea and feel the sky
Let your soul and spirit fly
Into the mystic

What Charles Bukowski didn’t say

False attributions spring eternally.

The Houston Press asks who the verifiable author of the following quote is:

My dear,

Find what you love and let it kill you. Let it drain from you your all. Let it cling onto your back and weigh you down into eventual nothingness. Let it kill you, and let it devour your remains.

For all things will kill you, both slowly and fastly, but it’s much better to be killed by a lover.

Falsely yours, Henry Charles Bukowski

I’ve decided on Tolstoy’s Decision Making Matrix

Here are some excerpts from this excellent article on The Art of Decision Making.

In “War and Peace,” Tolstoy writes that, while an armchair general may imagine himself “analyzing some campaign on a map” and then issuing orders, a real general never finds himself at “the beginning of some event”; instead, he is perpetually situated in the middle of a series of events, each a link in an endless chain of causation.

“Can it be that I allowed Napolean to get as far as Moscow?” Tolstoy’s General Kutuzov wonders.

“When was it decided? Was it yesterday, when I sent Platov the order to retreat, or was it the evening before, when I dozed off and told Bennigsen to give the orders? Or still earlier?”

For Tolstoy, the tendency of big decisions to make themselves was one of the great mysteries of existence. It suggested that the stories we tell about our lives are inadequate to their real complexity.

We first ask ourselves what we value, then seek to maximize that value.

We choose how we change.

The problem is that you don’t actually want to listen to classical music. You want to want to. Aspiring, Callard thinks, is a common human activity.

If we couldn’t aspire to changes that we struggle to describe, we’d be trapped within the ideas that we already.

To aspire, Callard writes, is to judge one’s present-day self by the standards of a future self who doesn’t yet exist.

The Action Movie Fairy Tale

An excerpt entirely by thelastpsychiatrist.

I.

80s and 90s action movies were often maligned not just for their violence, but also for their lack of depth and psychological sophistication.  “They’re not important.”

But these movies built a generation of men who are now in their 30s and 40s.

They didn’t learn that killing is cool, which was the worry of people who didn’t watch those movies and didn’t understand.  This violence was central to the cinematic experience, but incidental to the story

The complainers ignored the story because they thought it was basic, trivial.  Wrong.  Write down the plot synopsis of every action movie, and awareness will come over you: 

A marginal guy must save a hot chick from bad guys; when he does, he gets the girl.

Women and Qualifications

Elizabeth Gilbert’s perspective:

“Too many women still seem to believe that they are not allowed to put themselves forward at all, until both they and their work are perfect and beyond criticism.

Meanwhile, putting forth work that is far from perfect rarely stops men from participating in the global cultural conversation.

I like that feature in men — their absurd overconfidence, the way they will casually decide, ‘Well, I’m 41 percent qualified for this task, so give me the job!’

Yes, sometimes the results are ridiculous and disastrous, but sometimes, strangely enough, it works — a man who seems not ready for the task, not good enough for the task, somehow grows immediately into his potential through the wild leap of faith itself.” 

In other words, rise to the role you wish to perform.