“If I seem to boast more than is becoming, my excuse is that I brag for humanity rather than for myself; and my shortcomings and inconsistencies do not affect the truth of my statement. Notwithstanding much cant and hypocrisy, — chaff which I find it difficult to separate from my wheat, but for which I am as sorry as any man, — I will breathe freely and stretch myself in this respect, it is such a relief to both the moral and physical system; and I am resolved that I will not through humility become the devil’s attorney.”

— Henry David Thoreau


One thing I haven’t much touched on here is how wonderful my life is going right now. , my life has been more interesting and more fun. I’m happier, smiling more, laughing more, doing more. I’ve apparently gotten sexier, I feel more confident, I’m accomplishing more, reading more books that have long languished on my “one of these days” lists, and learning more.

Some of this is certainly just the shedding of my desk job. That alone did wonders for my mood and amusement-level — and gave me the free time I needed to do all that flirting and reading and accomplishing. Just getting out of the office and exercising in the sun more often probably explains some of the lift to my life.

But there’s also an attitude shift and a new perspective. I think I had really come to think, metaphorically and actually, that the key to a great meal was expensive ingredients prepared by a well-paid chef. I only had to remember that the meals I have most enjoyed, metaphorically and actually, have been cans of beans cooked over a camping stove after a 12-mile hike.


“I do not propose to write an ode to dejection, but to brag as lustily as chanticleer in the morning, standing on his roost, if only to wake my neighbors up.”

— Henry David Thoreau

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