“In Martinique, I had visited rustic and neglected rum-distilleries where the equipment and the methods used had not changed since the eighteenth century. In Puerto Rico, on the other hand, in the factories of the company which enjoys a virtual monopoly over the whole of the sugar production, I was faced by a display of white enamel tanks and chromium piping. Yet the various kinds of Martinique rum, as I tasted them in front of ancient wooden vats thickly encrusted with waste matter, were mellow and scented, whereas those of Puerto Rico are coarse and harsh. We may suppose, then, that the subtlety of the Martinique rums is dependent on impurities the continuance of which is encouraged by the archaic method of production. To me, this contrast illustrates the paradox of civilization: its charms are due essentially to the various residues it carries along with it, although this does not absolve us of the obligation to purify the stream. By being doubly in the right, we are admitting our mistake. We are right to be rational and to try to increase our production and so keep manufacturing costs down. But we are also right to cherish those very imperfections we are endeavouring to eliminate. Social life consists in destroying that which gives it its savour.”
Claude Lev-Strauss, Tristes Tropiques. The underlying philosophy of liberalism, and the consumer culture it generates, condensed into nine sentences. (via ayjay)
“"Captain, there’s a large iceberg ahead that will cause us to sink."
“No there isn’t”
“Yes, captain, it’s right there.”
“Ice berg schmice berg. Oh, that berg. Right. It’s not our fault.”
“Regardless, sir, It will still sink us.”
“No it won’t”
“So you don’t know. Is there consensus among the crew?”
“We don’t really have time…”
“If we stop the ship it will cost jobs and the economy will tank.”
“We don’t have to stop, just change course if we do it right away, before it’s too late.”
“You liberal elites just want to scare us.”
“I’m not liberal, I just looked off the starboard bow and there it was.”
“So it just appeared? You made it up. Why do you hate America?”
"ThatDudeOnABike" on climate change and American attitudes in the comments of this article.
Joshua Tuscan spills some thoughts here and they collect in a pool. I live in Seattle, btw.
I once cried because I couldn't draw a tree the way I saw it in my head. Granted, it was kindergarten, but it was a defining moment. One of my lifelong goals has been to
ride a horse through a shallow lake, seriously, it's in my grade school journal. I lived in Barbados for a while where I almost lost my toe, which has stood as a metaphor in
my life for that time. I watch a lot of movies and sometimes I fear that it is cutting into my ability to learn foreign languages. Oh yeah, I like to write beautiful, validated code.