So I kept writing through the summer, and in August the baby was born and I’d cradle him in my left arm while writing melodies at the piano with my right, and I said, let Osiris the keeper of the gates be my witness, other songwriters may go soft when they get to be parents but I am going to keep going all the way down into the inner darkness, it will set a good example for the baby, and besides, what am I going to do, suddenly start writing songs about cute things instead of songs about how to wrest cries of triumph from the screaming places? Please. May the baby grow up to spit in my face if I should pose that hard.
The more you document your own life, the more you check in, you tweet, the more you post photos of what you did last night, the more you do all of this stuff, or even in my case, the more you listen for little lines of dialogue that can make their way into stories, the more you photograph moments, in a way, the more you start to step out of those moments, and if you do that too much, you become a spectator to your own life.
The events that Phelps swims are among the hardest, and with every passing year, his body’s rebellion grew harder to ignore. He has spoken of not recovering as well between sets, workouts, seasons. Mark Spitz was 22 when he retired, and it was not coincidence that many of the top swimmers throughout history left the sport well before they approached their 30s. It is hard physically, mentally and emotionally to remain buoyant.
I think this article focuses, like most others, on Phelps as someone who believed he could repeat his Beijing performance, which I just don’t think is entirely true. That aside, this quote has some merit in a different context.
Phelps is a swimmer. It’s not just his job, it’s his entire life. It makes sense for him to leave the sport after the perfect showing he had in Beijing, and he tried that. However, I think it was too much for him to just quit. I think he’s too competitive for that. I think he’s the type that wants to stay in the pool until the bitter end.
What I’ve seen in his interviews during the Olympics is a man who is fighting the immense frustration that comes with aging out of a sport in order to do right by his teammates, to cheer them on even as his success wanes.
I respect and admire Phelps for that, and for continuing to do what he loves even if he does not reach the same heights he once did.
Being gifted doesn’t mean you’ve been given something. It means, you have something to give.
Better to do something imperfectly than to do nothing perfectly.
Men enjoy being thought of as hunters, but are generally too lazy to hunt. Women, on the other hand, love to hunt, but would rather nobody knew it.
I’ve been making a list of the things they don’t teach you at school. They don’t teach you how to love somebody. They don’t teach you how to be famous. They don’t teach you how to be rich or how to be poor. They don’t teach you how to walk away from someone you don’t love any longer. They don’t teach you how to know what’s going on in someone else’s mind. They don’t teach you what to say to someone who’s dying. They don’t teach you anything worth knowing.
Did you say it? “I love you. I don’t ever want to live without you. You changed my life.” Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it. But every now and then, look around, drink it in. Cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow.
You say the reason things fall to the ground is because of gravity.
I say that gravity is a word, a name you gave to a small aspect of the magic that surrounds you on a daily basis.
Electricity is another name for magic. Wind is another name for magic. Water is another name for magic. Love is another name for magic.
We all live in a magical place.