Links of the Week (12/09/2019)

Christmas trivia, how to name a hero, and the Bus Ticket theory of genius…

You are probably about to buy a dead tree and put it up in your living room. This is, if you ponder it, odd behaviour on your part. What’s odder is that the tree you’re buying is the Tree of Knowledge that was planted in the Garden of Eden and brought sin into the world, and the baubles you’ll hang on it are the forbidden fruit. But the explanation is pretty simple.

​Now THIS is an interesting article for this time of year.

The Origin of the Christmas Tree

I am convinced that a fictional character should have one dull name and one extraordinary name. It doesn’t matter which way around.

I wanted the simplest, dullest, plainest-sounding name I could find, ‘BLANK BLANK’ was much better than something more interesting, like ‘Peregrine Carruthers.’ Exotic things would happen to and around him, but he would be a neutral figure — an anonymous, blunt instrument wielded by a government department.

​Bet you won’t guess what the boring name is.

Indiana Jones and Stephen Dedalus

Everyone knows that to do great work you need both natural ability and determination. But there’s a third ingredient that’s not as well understood: an obsessive interest in a particular topic.

To explain this point I need to burn my reputation with some group of people, and I’m going to choose bus ticket collectors.

If I had to put the recipe for genius into one sentence, that might be it: to have a disinterested obsession with something that matters.

The Bus Ticket Theory of Genius

When he got home, Rowan would turn on his laptop and sit in front of the glowing screen for hours, or flop onto his bed, his phone hovering above his face. His Instagram feed flashed before him like a slot machine. His most popular account, @Zuccccccccccc, taking its name from Facebook’s chief executive, had 1.2 million followers. If his posts were good, his account would keep growing. If he took some time off, growth would stall. Rowan, like most teenagers on the internet, wasn’t after fame or money, though he made a decent amount — at one point $10,000 a month and more, he said. What Rowan wanted was clout.

​I have very mixed feelings about this article.

Here’s What’s Happening in the American Teenage Bedroom

Author: Scott

The mountains are calling, let me grab a jacket and my kids.

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