An Interstitial Blog Post

Interstitial moments are:

  • waits at airport gates
  • Uber rides
  • taxi rides
  • time in the waiting room at a doctor’s office or barber shop
  • i.e., those slices of time that happen between scheduled events or during transitions / pauses.

Lately, I’m hearing more and more people talk about how they (or we can) use interstitial moments to consume programming or education . . . or to practice mindfulness or some other creative act. I’m not suggesting that any of those choices are good or bad, but I do intend to start noticing the interstitial moments in my life and to see how I naturally fill them. If I’m being honest, I think I’m in one right now. Maybe you are, too.

Or maybe this would be better classified as interstitial space?


A Tweet that Stuck with Me

Keep your easy days EASY and your hard days HARD.

Too many people never have the confidence to take it really, truly easy and as a result they are never able to go really, truly hard. They get stuck in the murky middle. The murky middle is associated with stagnation and burnout.— Brad Stulberg (@BStulberg) April 7, 2019

I’m currently reading Brad’s new book — The Passion Paradox — and it’s messing with some of my certainties, which is why I keep picking up books. I really hope for that. I’ll try to type up some notes in the future.

Saturday Summary

Last week’s thinking, all in one place.

Last week’s summary.

I Hear You

Tomorrow’s a day off from work, so I’m looking back at my calendar to try to re-collect the week before heading into an extended weekend. As usual, I attended a lot of meetings this week, but I feel really lucky because, in many of these meetings, I had the chance to hear from passionate people.

I heard a science teacher argue passionately for a new Physics course, one that would give students access to a broader swath of the discipline.

I heard a group of students argue passionately for an improved approach to bias incidents in school and society.

I heard a colleague argue passionately for the importance of sharing one’s creative work.

I heard a student argue passionately for his particular interpretation of a complicated book.

I heard a colleague argue passionately for an inclusive approach to developing next year’s calendar.

All of these people were respectful; all of them were insightful; all of them had done their homework; all of them showed me different ways to see and value and care about the world. I am thankful that there are so many ways. I am thankful that so many people around me care enough about me, and about the work we do together, to try to help me see things from their point of view. I am thankful that my education, both formal and informal, taught me how to listen — and that I have so many opportunities to practice. Listening is obviously a gift to the heard. It is also a great gift to the hearer.

Keep Going

A colleague and I are using Austin Kleon’s new book, Keep Going, as a frame for our senior May Term program. Any senior working on a creative project during the month of May will receive or has received a copy. So far, students who have cracked it open have often said “wow” or “this looks like a great book” or sat silently reading until they reached a passage or drawing that they wanted to share, which never takes long.

More of the Same?

Yesterday I posted something about a (to be) revered moment in golf history. Today, a friend shared with me a revered moment from an e-sport (sometimes known as a video game). The parallels between the two moments are quite interesting: both include passionate players, steely resolve, perseverance, the triumph of hard-won wisdom, long practice, and fully engaged audiences.