Flirting With Nihilism

shouting into the void about the 21st century human condition

originally posted on my old host on April 7, 2019

Though I am a bit creeped out by data collection, I do look forward to Spotify's end-of-year summary email. The summary always gives an interesting snapshot of the listener's year in music. How much time did you spend listening to music throughout the year? What songs did you listen to most? These questions and more will be answered.

I guess I'm not so bothered by the practice of data collection as long as I get something cool or interesting out of it. Let's face it, everyone's a hypocrite at times.

This year, the summary revealed that my favorite artist of 2018 was none other than Jason Isbell. If you know me, then this isn't a shock. Isbell instantly became one of my favorite artists when I discovered his album Southeastern a few years ago. I've since had the pleasure of seeing him live in concert on three separate occasions, each time being special in its own right.

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originally posted on my old host on February 1, 2019

It seems that my blog has mostly become a medium for me to write about revelations from troubling events I endured a few years ago. This was not intentional, but little in my life has ever gone according to any semblance of a plan. Therefore, I suppose my best strategy is to just roll with it, so I'm going to take a page from the Nike handbook and Just do it.

There are any number of catastrophes that can plague an individual over the course of his life. Job loss, betrayal, a disabling or terminal diagnosis. Life is full of chaos, and you can be sure that at some point said chaos will swing by to say hi. It's unavoidable. If you haven't encountered a significant challenge yet, count yourself lucky. And then get ready. Buddha himself said it best: “Life is suffering.” You can't run from it, so you might as well embrace it.

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originally posted on my old host on December 7, 2018

I wasn't seeking a video of George W. Bush (hereinafter referred to as “W”) giving a eulogy to his father. It just happened to be on the frontpage of YouTube. When I started the video, I wondered whether I'd end up watching all 12+ minutes. But W pulled me in right off the bat when he said, “The idea is to die young as late as possible.”

They always say to start with a good joke, W, and you did good. Real good.

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originally posted on my old host on September 1, 2018

Scene

Dig if you will a picture

...of me with a friend at the bar.

This friend has been through something truly devastating. Let's say he's just lost a parent. So he called me for counsel, which is a smart move, because hey, I've been there.

He tells me how it happened. It was his mother who passed, and they were incredibly close. He tells me the details of her battle, how she tried to put on a good face as her disease withered her away. He can't fight the tears anymore, and neither can I, because it's all hitting so close to home. I'm embarrassed, but I don't hold back.

I'm sorry, I tell him. I'm so sorry, man. This sucks.

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originally posted on my old host on August 9, 2018

Take a deep breath. A really, really big deep breath. Do you smell that? Do you recognize that sweet aroma infiltrating your nostrils?

It's football, baby. Sweaty, nasty football.

For most fanbases, this is the best time of the year. With nearly a full offseason behind them, fans have had plenty of time to delude themselves into thinking that their teams are better than they really are. Sure, the season can quickly become a dumpster fire once it starts, but right now, we're all equal. We're all 0-0, baby.

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originally posted on my old host on August 9, 2018

Dreams can be incredibly powerful things. They can give direction. They can be equally inspiring and motivating, keeping us holding on or moving forward during truly trying times. And then there’s the satisfaction that may accompany the fulfillment of our dreams. That euphoria, that rush. When you think about these aspects, it’s easy to see why we let our imaginations run wild.

But dreams can also be incredibly limiting. While we’re busy focusing on our desires, our dreams can keep us from seeing the opportunities lying right in front of us. They can distract us from all that is happening here and now. And if we don’t meet our dreams, there’s the possibility that we end up feeling like complete failures, regardless of whatever else we may have accomplished.

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originally posted on my old host on August 9, 2018

Recently, a tweet from Alexander D. Riddle led me to read his blog post on Medium: 5 Things No One Told Me About Running A Business. I enjoy reading such posts from time to time because there’s usually some little nugget of truth that isn’t being told nearly enough. My favorite nugget from this particular post comes from #3 Hard Work Does Not Equal Growth:

You can’t just be the hardest working, you also have the be the smartest working.

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originally posted on my old host on August 9, 2018

From time to time, someone will accuse me of having a morbid fascination with death. I’d argue that fascination is a bit inaccurate; my relationship with death is closer to a familiarity slowly working its way toward acceptance. Those who know me beyond the most superficial terms know that death and the resulting losses and grief have had a big influence on me over the last few years. In short, loss has opened my eyes to certain realities, has shaped so many of my views, and has changed the very essence of who I am.

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