A Heritage of Evil
our ideology of radical individualism works against any thought of collective responsibility
“I tell people all the time, Austin is white people’s Atlanta. It’s where a white person can come and fit right in and go anywhere and see themselves.”
“on est bien, là” – we are good, here.
Nighttime is when the garbage voice starts chattering. It says “burn it down.” Get rid of navigation. Life is short, garbage tastes good, be free tonight. Keep everything. Show nothing.
It’s the mischievousness of changing how you think by finding a new lens.
Design isn’t alone in its lack of quality content—the web, by and large, has become a dumping ground for garbage. Most design content has become poor quality, surface-level content marketing that does more damage than good, because it offers over-simplified, misinformed perspectives dressed up as guidance. One hardly gets the sensation of lived experience and professional acumen in the words. When the experienced don’t write, grifters step in, feign expertise, and sell it.
We have to endure the discordance between imagination and fact. It is better to say, ‘I am suffering,’ than to say, ‘This landscape is ugly.
The only significant differentiator is the camera on the phone, which is why it is relentlessly updated.
we forget that it is also, at times, the greatest privilege for someone to look beyond our adult self in order to engage with — and forgive — the disappointed, furious, inarticulate child within.
I’ve thought all of them are putting in an extreme amount of effort to avoid using a good old-fashioned bike.
The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices. They’re selling nice things, but maybe more importantly, they’re selling a confidence in those things, and an ability to opt out of the stuff rat race.
by tapping into something powerful: the idea that we’re all fancy and special enough to have something made just for us.
What Tex-Mex suffers incessantly, in media, in casual conversation, in its relentless commodification to enrich corporations while family-run restaurants struggle to stay afloat, is a lack of love. Or, to get confrontational, a patronizing disrespect. It is stereotyped as cheap without even the backhanded compliment of fetishized authenticity.
And the way we represent data visually should embrace imperfection and approximation.
A person might join a site to look at pictures of her nephew and five years later believe in a flat earth.
What scares us is the thought of East Austin, and even Austin in general, losing its identity, or it’s soul. Therefore, our goal as business owners is to hopefully do our part in not only maintaining Austin’s unique identity and soul, but retaining our own.
Silence is a resource,” it said. It could be marketed just like clean water or wild mushrooms. “In the future, people will be prepared to pay for the experience of silence.
The fact that you never know who a hashtag is going to hook makes it something more than a way to interact with brands — a hashtag is a seance, mediating the space between constructed identities. It’s a way of reaching out, in hope and longing, into the ether.
For all of their oppositions, both Infinity and Nothing become identical, being the same shade of deep and beautiful black, so that any differences between them are rendered moot.
it should feel like the thing you always wanted to say, but didn’t know how.
She knows she might be wrong. “It’s not like my opinions are the only ones anybody can ever have,” Sudduth, says, shrugging.
The more righteous we get, the more mistakes we make.
the external world and its influences is inescapable and not straightforward to slough off, and nature and society shape us just as much as our own choices. And so authenticity must always be negotiated in complex interdependency with its opposite — that is, you were never really authentic in the first place.
We have too much confidence in our beliefs, and overconfidence really is associated with a failure of imagination.
black hole in a bottle
Being on time is a sign of civility between two people.
How do you get people to say, “I don’t know”? I don’t know.
What do we settle for, thirty years later? A seemingly endless series of drive-by shootings punctuated by the occasional lynch mob, conducted by anonymous people with the depth of barroom philosophers and the attention span of fruit flies.
People who value their time are more likely to pursue careers that they love.
The capitalist interlopers that Sante says are the death knell of any scene are always already there.
it’s important to remember that these days the social media tail wags the mainstream media dog
These algorithms are weird and undefeatable.
chronic apologizing can actually be a smoke signal for self-involvement.
“Thank you, and I love you, and enough.”
Famously, Google’s only two “Level 11” engineers (on a scale of 1 to 10) code by sitting next to one another, staring at the same screen and working on a single keyboard.
Pleasurable product can never be really useful without great usability, but usable product can be alright, even if they’re not very pleasurable.
Blue-collar customers were always my favorite. They don’t treat you like a servant. They don’t tell you, “We like the help to use the side door.” They don’t assume you’re an idiot just because you wear a name tag to work and your hands are calloused. The books on their shelves aren’t bound in leather. But the spines are cracked. Most of them, when you turn on the TV, it’s not set to Fox. They’re the only customers who tip.
Another commonality of the zealot then and now: humorlessness.
Being from most states is just part of your bio; being from Texas is a lifelong commitment.
And because we are Americans, we have a preternatural tendency to dig our way out of that unhappiness with stuff.
I think sometimes we think too much in terms of the battle for truth—the old kind of idea that free speech is all about figuring out what the objective, Platonic form of the truth is. And if you frame it that way, you’re bound to be disappointed. But if you frame it in a much humbler and simpler way, as an ongoing effort to understand the world in which you actually live, that changes the answer to the question of, should you listen to someone who’s highly influential in a movement that you may really, really dislike? Of course, if you want to know what the world actually looks like.
Teaching people to react to words as if they were weapons is teaching them to fetishize their damage—or even to create new damage.
The new populist politics is a scam and a lie that exploits anger and fear to gain power. It has no care for the people it supposedly champions and no respect for them. It will deliver nothing—not only because its leaders are almost invariably crooks (although they are), but because they have no plans and no plans to make plans.
She had seen hundreds of stories on Facebook about the threat of sharia, and this confirmed much of what she already believed. It was probably true, she thought. It was true enough.
“It’s not about who has the best policy or the best story,’’ Mr. Rutherford said. “It’s about who can sell the best story.”
This seems to occur in part because we see opposing facts as undermining our sense of identity.
Their stories will most likely include a mix of a few deep cuts and hundreds or thousands of paper cuts.
“News anchors looking into camera and reading a script handed down by a corporate overlord, words meant to obscure the truth not elucidate it, isn’t journalism. It’s propaganda. It’s Orwellian. A slippery slope to how despots wrest power, silence dissent, and oppress the masses.”