Inspirations from a Creed music video

Well, a live version of “My Sacrifice”, to be exact. So Creed. They look kind of like meatheads. They have rather shaved heads that are smaller than their necks. They look like those guys you went to high school with.

Wait a minute. Why are they “those guys you went to high school with”, and not “those guys you talk to every day”? Was high school the last time you interacted with a jock? Why is that, and is it a bad thing?

Why is that: it’s because you curate your own world around yourself. You don’t want to hang out with jocks, so you surround yourself with non-jocks. (This happens pretty easily: get a tech job and move to a hip neighborhood. If you run into a jock, just ignore him and hang out with your friends again.)

Is curating your own world a bad thing: Well… world-curating has some nice effects. You like the people around you, you don’t get shoved into lockers, you can just start talking about Wizard People Dear Reader or Python or Sufjan Stevens whenever. I suppose the problem then is that we get worse at dealing with stuff that’s not in our bubbles. You might have to deal with a jock someday, but your jock-skills will have atrophied.

Is curating your own world inevitable: maybe, yes. Almost by definition, we’ll keep going for more of what we like and less of what we don’t. The world will continue to supply us with the same, in higher quantities, for less money, and in more places. If I decide I’m tired of Delhi, I can flip on the A/C, find some Chinese or Italian or whatever food, tune in to my computer/phone/Kindle, and I’m in a climate-controlled, food-controlled, information-controlled bubble all of my choosing.

What’s the answer? Maybe just not curating too much. If you refuse to curate your world, you’ll just get random everything all the time. (It’s like traveling in India: exciting, wearying, and impossible as a long-term lifestyle.) If you go for, say, 80% curated and 20% random, you’ll get to mostly-enjoy a mostly-smooth life, while still inoculating yourself against all the tough stuff.

How can we inject 20% randomness into our carefully-curated lives? If you know the answer to that one, let me know.

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