Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
We all just pass through. Like shadows for a weekend.
Another Sunday, Another Naive Weekly — Observations From The Internet Wilderness.
Uno enjoys to poop in the shower. It happened again yesterday evening. Without going into detail, Ana and I had a big laugh. Almost a real-life ROFL. Except we tried to stay on our feet for reasons you can imagine.
While packing down our flat, I have been thinking about the commitments I make. The commitments I make to myself, the places I live, the generations before me, and the generations that follow. I once lived one year with only a carry-on backpack. Back then I’d hike through deep snow in running shoes, the only pair of shoes I had. Being a nomad was an aspiration.
Now I can hardly fit Uno in the carry-on luggage. But it is not only the boy who has grown. My physical presence has exploded. Books, frames, plants, and everything else, when we move later this month it will be slow and heavy. Somehow that is wonderful.
Here today, gone tomorrow. But see you next Sunday, and thanks for sticking with me.
Callie Wheeler is a wild camper who smiles while hiding from grizzly bears and walking in deep snow. She is an avid podcast listener by heart who keeps an extensive notebook of criminals. With a past at Prezi and Deezer, today she is building tools to facilitate corporate train travel and weathering the storm at Egencia, an Expedia company.
K: How do you think about time?
Callie: I think about time in context. I’m a big history nerd and I love to reach back thousands of years and see how humans have been doing the same things over and over. I occupy this moment in space, and I have been preceded and will be followed by another who will face similar problems, and feel similar emotions. Because of this context, I consider every moment as the moment that I’m supposed to be experiencing. No regret for the past and no FOMO for the future.
K: Where do you go to get lost?
Callie: I play a game with myself where I select a random number of kilometers and a random cardinal direction and determine that point to be my goal. Of course, it’s not about the endpoint itself, it’s about the journey to get there. Along the way I find incredible things — a neighborhood block party tug of war competition, incredible graffiti in abandoned factories, horse races through a forest track, a tree swing atop the world… Most of the time I never actually make it to the “destination” but I do accomplish the goal of immersing myself in a place and breaking out of my routine to explore my surroundings.
K: What was one rabbit hole you recently fell into?
Callie: I’m currently studying the Hungarian language and discovered that the word they use for the holiday we call Easter is “Husvet” which literally means “to take meat” (“Hus” = Meat, “vet” = take). I was further reading Wikipedia when I learned that the term Easter comes from the root “Ostera” which is a Celtic holiday celebrating the rebirth of spring and was celebrated with flowers, rabbits, colored eggs and ham feasts. My whole identity flashed before my very eyes as I realised that, as an American who grew up in a Christian tradition, I have been celebrating a pagan festival my whole life! As I now live in France where they don’t celebrate Easter, but rather the Christian holiday of “Paques” which has its roots in the Judeo-Christian celebration of Passover (FR: Paques = GR: Pascha = HE: Pesach = EN: Passover). SO, in fact, if you celebrate “Easter” (or “Ostern” in the germanic tradition) chances are, you are celebrating in a similar way to the Celtic peoples of Europe 2000 years ago!
K: What would you love to sell that no one wants to buy?
Callie: Neighborhood parks — I encounter so many vacant lots or empty fields when I wander through town. Many of them have sat empty for years, accumulating trash, and weeds and fences. Each one is an opportunity for community and nature to regrow in our cities. Each time I see one, I design a small park with benches, flowers and trees, walkways and activities. I have even researched prices for these elements and I wish that a city, municipality, landowner or neighborhood would be open to “buying” a park that would enhance the lives of the people, plants and animals that live nearby.
Technology empowerment courses — So much pain and suffering is generated when the modern technology we use is not well understood by its users and collaborators. Have you ever done tech support for an older relative? Have you ever opened up an email that should be organised in a spreadsheet or collaborative document? I want to teach everyone in the world the basic mental model that will make navigating technology so much more approachable, enjoyable and empowering!
Everyone’s Instagram is hyper-personalized; from the people we follow to the obsessions we stalk. But despite the fact that my Instagram looks very different from the author of this essay, her experience mirrors mine. If you are — or ever have been — on Instagram I bet you’ll enjoy this read. Especially if you remember the days before the shop button.
This is a story about the EasyJet generation. Judging from the number of flights I have taken the past years, I’m part of this white and mobile class who until the pandemic have enjoyed the option of leaving. You might ask what is the connection to the internet? If so, that is exactly the question I was hoping you’d ask, because it is important to remember that not everyone has the privilege of leaving. Some are forced to leave, others are forced to stay, and others were never invited.
Hi, I’m Kristoffer and you have just read Naive Weekly — Observations from the Internet Wilderness.
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Photograph by Ana Santl.