Feb 13, 2021

the rattle 2/19

— This was a good conversation with Austin Kleon, and reminds me of how my friend Chad always says, half-serious: Curiosity is a holy thing.

Two is a pattern for me. If somebody mentions noodles in an email, and then I’m watching TV later and somebody’s eating noodles, I write it down, and think about what kind of message it could be. I know it’s not real, but that sort of dumb “everything could be a secret message” attitude seems to open up a possibility space for me, activates the playful wiring in my brain that gives me ideas. I think collage is an art form that actively invites these weird patterns: you’ll be making a collage, and see two elements juxtaposed, and it’ll create a third thing in your brain.

— Still thinking about Michael Downing, whose obit is here, but it’s this short interview that stays with me:

“We tend to be defensive of our work. We want it to be received well, to be instantly commended for what we’ve done. But the creative writing classroom is a place to develop the habit of wanting our original work to change,” Downing said. “That to me is the project of a life—to change, and to be changed by the people you encounter.”

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