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A group blog about questions that might not have answers.
An alert dog perched on a chair next to a Christmas tree looks out the window at viewer.
An alert dog perched on a chair next to a Christmas tree looks out the window at viewer.

At my house, we put up the holiday decorations on the weekend following Thanksgiving, to extend the joy and goodwill that begins with the gathering of family to feast. We take them down on January 6 — the twelfth day of Christmas, Epiphany, Three Kings’ Day. Aligning family traditions with more widely held observances can help cement them into a larger context, so these dates are something I try to hang on to, even when conditions make it difficult.


How to make a mythic pattern language

In the airplane, black rectangles hang from the ceiling. A salve to ease the burden of our bonds to time.

We have always held forth fictions before a dark background and illuminated the night with stories when all we can do is watch and wait.

In the absence of my friends and without a campfire circle, the black screen encourages me; at least I will be entertained.

✈️🕯📺🧙🏽🍄✈️🕯📺🧙🏽🍄✈️🕯📺🧙🏽🍄✈️🕯📺🧙🏽🍄✈️🕯📺🧙🏽🍄✈️🕯📺🧙🏽🍄


How to bring a myth to life (and share it with friends)

In the Dark Forest, in the shade of the oldest tree, a circle convenes around a yearling trunk. Druids, young and elder, consult in hushed tones. A new seed is growing.

Dear Buster,


willow oak, quercus phellos.

I chose my house, in part, because of a tree. The tree sits on a vacant lot next door to my house, and I wouldn’t agree to buy the house unless both were part of the deal. Certain features are long-term investments, and I won’t live long enough to grow my own.


An experiment in using mythic mode to confront the meaning crisis.

Setting context for this post is going to be tough. It’s gonna get weird but I try to tie it all together into a useful proposal by the end. Bear with me!

This is an idea that’s been developing in the back of my head, in very nebulous regions of my notes and thoughts, after a number of long-running themes have converged for me. My book on productive disagreement is out, and the 3 years I spent researching and writing it have really crystallized for me both the urgent need for…


A few prototype myths offered as an experiment in designing a personal mythology.

1.

A tiny snake woke up in a chaotic and dark forest. It asked, “What am I?”

2.

A tiny snake woke up in a chaotic and dark forest. It asked, “What am I?”


Dear Jon,


It doesn’t have to be vague

Buster and Kevin,

Lost in Translation

When Sophia Coppola’s Lost in Translation came out in 2003, I loved the structure of the movie. My co-workers disagreed. “Nothing happens!” they said. But I think that’s part of the beauty of the screenplay. Two lonely travellers with insomnia have a series of disjointed memories. If you’ve ever felt lost, especially in another country, it rings…


Congrats, Jon Bell, you just killed the dragon (metaphor).


Freeing the dragons from our own mind

Kevin and Buster,

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