Discover more from Austin Kleon
Trying not to spiral out
10 things worth sharing: ice storms, the power of regret, the preset that changed reggae, The Legend of Zelda, and more...
Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week:
I’m writing this in the middle of an ice storm, hoping the grid holds up and our power doesn’t go out. Here’s something I wrote after last year’s storm, about what living in Texas has taught me about finding beauty in crummy situations: “It ain’t Grand.”
Current reads: I’m 50 pages from finishing William James’ The Varieties of Religious Experience. So close! I’m also reading a handful of essays from W.A. Mathieu’s The Listening Book: Discovering Your Own Music at each meal, and, for reasons not entirely clear to me, I’m re-reading Cormac McCarthy’s No Country For Old Men at night before bed, thinking the same thing I did when I read it when it first came out: This will make a really great movie.
On the top of my to-read pile is Dan Pink’s most recent book, The Power of Regret: How Looking Backward Moves Us Forward. Dan is not only a great writer, he’s a real mensch. Here’s a video of us talking about setting up a bliss station. (Further back into the archives: my mind map of A Whole New Mind.)
An 8-year-old slid his handwritten book onto a library shelf. It now has a years-long waiting list.
A fun profile of the Casio employee behind the “Sleng Ting rhythm that revolutionized reggae. (I love that the programmed pattern is still available on the new models of the Casio SA-76, aka the perfect first keyboard for little ones.)
Podcasts: this Franz Ferdinand episode of Song Exploder put a huge, goofy grin on my face, as did John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats on why he wishes he’d made Depeche Mode’s first album. (He’s got a new instant bestseller out called Devil House.)
My kids are home for a long weekend, so we started playing The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time together on our Nintendo Switch. We’re also learning songs from this nice little Zelda songbook on the piano. (And drawing on our new whiteboard!)
TV: I was a latecomer to The Mandalorian, which I enjoyed way more than any Star Wars prequel or sequel, and now I’m enjoying The Book of Boba Fett. (One reason I like it is that the filmmakers do what George Lucas did so well in the originals: steal from great sources!)
February 2nd may have passed, but for the artist, every day is Groundhog Day.
See you next week…