#09 Existentially Hungover

An action plan to combat caffeine depletion

Welcome to week 9 of Internet of Literal Things. The weird, wacky, wonderful, and wild of the world wide web seems to be several-too-many “w’s” and a perfect place for me to start. I’m Sara Nason, a fellow person on the internet, who happens to have many hours on hand to read random articles that are tucked into multiple crevices in my phone.

Over the past two years, I’ve found a cup of coffee to be less helpful (yes, you’ve guessed it, it’s my weekly Sunday routine of sitting in my favorite coffee shop with a massive coffee in hand) — the caffeine doesn’t sink into my bloodstream like previous years: motivation aside (as many, many, many people can attest to the fact that I am, in no uncertain terms, quite motivated), I have felt my anxiety levels rise and my moments of quiet stillness disappear. The sirens of firetrucks and police cars running by my apartment at 1am in my little downstate village seem heightened beyond the sirens of firetrucks and police cars running by my apartment at 1am in Manhattan.

I’ve found myself calling it an existential hangover. I don’t write about the negative news (most of the time, unless it’s transit or IRS related, two things that don’t get a lot of public anger) on this newsletter, because it’s my spot of trying to not be existentially hungover. Like existentially tired or existentially sad, the feelings seem more to the core. They seem propagated by the constant barrage of bad news I receive on my phone and in the news and on newspapers. So with the existential hangover, as a white woman living in constant privilege in this world, here’s the deal:

  1. Donate everything you can: money, time, clothes, furniture — show up every time it matters, even if it is tiring, because at least it’s better than feeling existentially tired. (PS: I give monthly donations to the causes I care about — even just at $25/month for each cause, I don’t need to remember to give money, because it’s already being taken out of my bank account every month)

  2. Signal-boost the people doing the work. Women of color are consistently the organizers of social progress and justice. If you have an audience, even a small one, it’s your job to promote the women of color doing the work.

  3. Check in with your strong friends. Buy them a coffee, send them a nice text, they are strong for a reason.

So, strangers of the internet, here we go. Existentially Hungover for the Internet of Literal Things #09.

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What I’m Reading

Beauty YouTube Scandals and the Pitfalls of Loyalty Politics (WIRED)

Designing the Butterfly-Friendly City (CityLab)

The South Korean government is switching to Linux (The Korea Herald)

Why Play a Music CD? ‘No Ads, No Privacy Terrors, No Algorithms’ (New York Times)

What will it take to finish this bike trail across the US? (CityLab)

Samin Nosrat’s 10 Essential Persian Recipes (New York Times)

What happens when you put a classroom on wheels and park it in the poorest neighborhoods of San Francisco? (The California Sunday Magazine)

Don’t let people enjoy things (The Baffler)


What I’m Watching

4 minutes of John Mulaney laughing with Bill Hader (YouTube)

HBO’s Barry: A Conversation with John Mulaney and Bill Hader (YouTube)


What I’m Listening To

Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN.

Hamilton Leithauser and Rostam’s I Had A Dream That You Were Mine


🏆 A Photo of Some Wonderful #UglyDogs Related Thing On The Internet 🥇


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