Your Life in Weeks by Tim Urban
Wait But Why, May 7, 2014
Thanks to this post, I keep a life calendar in Google Sheets. It’s a satisfying memento mori, and helps me see the shape of my life as a whole.
(This website, reviewmylife, offers a free template, but I haven’t tested it: Weeks of your life calendar – free Excel download.)
The Onion, May 12, 2014
BETHESDA, MD—In a diabolical omission of the utmost cruelty, stone-hearted ice witch Leslie Schiller sent her friend a callous thank-you email devoid of even a single exclamation point, sources confirmed Monday. “Hey, I had a great time last night,” wrote the cold-blooded crone, invoking the chill of a thousand winters with her sparely punctuated missive—a message as empty of human warmth as the withered hag’s own frozen soul. “Nice to get together. We should do it again sometime.” In a final flourish of ruthless savagery, sources reported that the barbaric gorgon concluded the email with a conspicuously single “xo.”
What You Can’t Say by Paul Graham
Ahead of its time, and piercing in its condemnation of the “aggressively conventional-minded.”
8 Steps to Getting What You Want… Without Formal Credentials by Tim Ferriss (featuring Michael Ellsberg)
Sept. 29, 2011
For anyone who wants to be a freelancer but doesn’t know where to start.
Salary Negotiation: Make More Money, Be More Valued by Patrick McKenzie
Kalzumeus, Jan. 23, 2012
Probably the most valuable thing you can read, in terms of financial return per minute of reading time.
Book Review: The Black Swan by Scott Alexander
Slate Star Codex, Sept. 19, 2018
The best book review I’ve ever read.
My favorite line:
For [Taleb], ordinary people – taxi drivers, barbers, vibrant salt-of-the-earth heavily-accented New Yorkers – are the heroes, who know what’s up and are too sensible to go around saying that everything must be a bell curve, or that they have a clever theory which proves the market can never crash. It’s only the egghead intellectuals who could make such an error.
I am not sure this is true – my last New York taxi driver spent the ride explaining to me that he was the Messiah, which seems like an error on some important axis of reasoning that most intellectuals get right. But I understand that some of Taleb’s later works – Antifragile and Skin In The Game – may address more of what he means by this.
The Best Time I Pretended I Hadn’t Heard of Slavoj Žižek by Rosa Lyster
The Hairpin, July 14, 2016
Describes a social phenomenon I’d noticed, but hadn’t put into words; the angst of finding out someone you kind of like hasn’t heard of “a person or cultural touchstone” that you think they should have. (And a reminder to let go of shoulds.)
This girl I had a bit of a crush on told me she had never watched “Twin Peaks,” and it damn near killed me. The reason I had a crush on her in the first place is because we liked so many of the same books, and movies, and music. How could she have never watched “Twin Peaks?” Was she messing with me? How? It did not for a second occur to me that she just hadn’t got round to it. My immediate response was to believe that she had deliberately not watched it in order to get on my nerves. When she told me later that of course she had watched “Twin Peaks,” my eye started twitching.
This is the beating heart of the Žižek Game: the disbelief that something you care about has failed to register on the consciousness of another. The agony of suspecting that someone has looked at Slavoj Žižek’s Wikipedia page and thought “I do not need to know about this man.”
How To Lose Weight In 4 Easy Steps by Aaron Bleyaert
Medium, Feb 7, 2015
Heartfelt, funny, and genuinely motivational.
(Not endorsed: The parts where he describes his ex as if she still owes him anything.)