On Putting Yourself Out There

A ship is safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for

William Shedd
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On Williams

You have a choice to make. You now have a Williams degree, which is your ticket to success and comfort. You can wring your hands over the sad state of affairs [in the world] or you can become part of the crusade for continuous change. You can reap the benefits of the sacrifices of those who have gone on before you, or you can honor the memory of those on whose shoulders you stand today and help build a better tomorrow. I suggest that you have no choice at all. In fact, when you enrolled at Williams, you already cast your vote. This noble institution does not graduate people content to sit on the sidelines.

Adam Falk, Williams Commencement 2015

On bodysnarking

Bodysnarking is not okay, and if we’re ever going to solve the problem of men being seen as whole human beings and women being seen as a a bunch of parts, we’ve got to cut this shit out. If you are alive on this planet, you should be able to sun yourself without disparaging comment. We would never say That salamander is too fat to be lying on that rock or That groundhog needs to do some crunches — why do we treat women this way?

On Being a Late Bloomer

and so here I am: still standing in the arena, in hand-to-hand combat with demons mostly of my own making, aiming to make a small dent in the universe. nowhere near a great success story, yet fighting the good fight and perhaps helping others to achieve greatness as I attempt a bit of my own. I’ll be 46 in a month, well past the age when most folks have already shown what they’re made of. but I’m still grasping for that brass ring.