I hope you all enjoyed last week’s post about reciprocating airplane engines. I’ll write about turbine engines in the next week or so, once we have covered them more in class.
Meanwhile, here are 4 thoughts for your Wednesday:
You know how to figure out if something is too good to be true? Look around you – is there evidence that the thing is true? If someone tells you of a way you can get rich in a hurry, look around for rich people. Do you see tons of them? Don’t you think that if it were possible to get rich overnight, everyone would jump on the opportunity and everyone would get rich? Same goes for crazy diet plans/pills/shakes. If immediate and lasting fitness were that easy to come by, wouldn’t everyone be ripped?
Sometimes when I ride my main mountain bike, I get tired of trying to decide what gear I should be in and how high my seat should be. Research has shown that the act of making decisions takes a neurological toll on us, and that it’s possible to exhaust the ability to make good decisions. This is why I sometimes love to ride my singlespeed. The seatpost has one position and the bike has one gear. The only decision I need to make is whether or not to take it out that day, knowing that I’m going to be standing up most of the time and pushing my legs and lungs to the limit. Once I decide I’m OK with that, the ride on the singlespeed is very refreshing.
I have a friend who never gives anyone a second chance to treat her poorly. It took me a while to figure out how to do this myself because I was brought up to think that we should assess people on the potential qualities we project onto them, instead of assessing them based on the plain-as-day information that they present to us in the way they behave. If you assume that my friend has wasted less time on narcissists, solipsists and asswipes of all stripes, you would be correct. People will show you who they are, if only you’re willing to pay attention. I wish I had figured this out 20 years sooner, but I’m glad I finally got it.
Volatility and creativity are not closely related, popular conceptions notwithstanding. A volatile, drama-filled life leaves little room in it for the reflection that creativity requires. I’ve gotten flak here and there in life for keeping a tidy house, living by a routine and doing my laundry on a schedule so predictable you could run Tokyo’s trains by it. If anyone wants to give me flak for that today, I’ll just ask them how many novels they’re written. Emerson’s famous quote “”A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds” is often offered as evidence that routine and order are only for those who are small of spirit, but I don’t think he meant that. He says a “foolish consistency.” A consistency that allows room for creativity to bloom isn’t foolish at all.