Amerika Haus C/O Berlin: Magnum Contact Sheet exhibition

While in Berlin, I visited the Amerika Haus, which just re-opened in 2014, to see the excellent Magnum Contact Sheets exhibition. Continue reading

Minimalism: Sentimentality and gold watches

To sentimentalise something is to look only at the emotion in it and at the emotion it stirs in us rather than at the reality of it, which we are always tempted not to look at …

– Frederick Buechner

I’ve adopted a minimalist attitude towards life: pare down my goals, pare down my relationships, and of course, pare down the things I own.

I’ve systematically worked through my room, first gingerly clearing out a drawer, then working up to sorting out (and throwing out) my clothes, and now I’m working on clearing out those meddlesome sentimental items. Continue reading

To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts

It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look… To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts. 

– Henry David Thoreau

I have heard life described by some as a blank canvas, yours to create as you wish. To be honest, I’m not sure what my thoughts are on this.

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We devise astounding means of communication, but do we communicate with one another?

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchap, WhatsApp.

It’s a full time job trying to maintain all the conversations I have going on. I struggle enough in a small group, face-to-face, with only one conversation happening at a time. Maintaining contact with tens of people across several mediums, well … It is exhausting. And it’s irrelevant.  Continue reading

Black cats and the privileged life

When you arise in the morning think of what a privilege it is to be alive, to think, to enjoy, to love …

– Marcus Aurelius

I was walking to the library this morning and a black cat jumped right out in front of me. I don’t know how I didn’t step on him except that he moved so quickly that he’d rustled out of the bushes, onto the pavement, and across to the other side of the road in the time it took for me to blink.

“Now,” I think, “a black cat crosses your path – is this lucky? or unlucky?”

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Conformity begins the moment you ignore how you feel for acceptance

As of this moment, I could be employed. I could be out shopping for a new outfit to wear on my first day and by Monday I could be following a grey-suited stranger to my randomly appointed grey desk, ready to make jokes and small talk with people I’d now be surrounded by for 40 hours a week, trying to appear both friendly and laid back, all the while swallowing down a rising feeling of despair.

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