Chad Comello

books, movies, libraries, typewriters

Tag: logbook

Potent quotes noted in 2017

A few years ago I started logging the interesting or inspiring quotes I come upon in my reading and watching. I thought it would be fun to post the ones I captured in 2017, which taken together tell part of the ongoing story going on in my head and heart. What story do they tell, I wonder:

“Learning weighs nothing. Lessons you can carry with you.” – Rachel Seiffert, A Boy in Winter

“Read more than you write, live more than you read.” – Junot Diaz

“The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.” – Mary Oliver

“Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” – attributed to Dwight Eisenhower

“All wisdom ends in paradox.” – Jeffrey Eugenides, The Virgin Suicides

“The blessing is outside of your comfort zone.” – Running store guy, via Ashley Hicks

“Knowing that we have to die, we ought to live to be prepared to die well, and then, let death come when it may.” – Andrew Jackson

“It is preferable to take people as they are, rather than as they really are.” – Lord Chesterfield

“To look for something beautiful is its own reward. A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?” – The Lost City of Z

“Go for a walk; cultivate hunches; write everything down, but keep your folders messy; embrace serendipity; make generative mistakes; take on multiple hobbies; frequent coffeehouses and other liquid networks; follow the links; let others build on your ideas; borrow, recycle, reinvent. Build a tangled bank.” – Steven Johnson, Where Good Ideas Come From

Adventures in Logbooking

Looking at my logbook, I noticed that I recently had a string of four starred books or movies in a row, the longest streak yet. (It would have been five in a row had I seen Brooklyn before Love & Mercy, which I liked a lot but not star-liked.)

749 Typewriter Revolution, The Richard Polt book 2015 2015 Dec
748 Tangerine Sean S. Baker film 2015 2015 Dec
747 Creed Ryan Coogler film 2015 2015 Dec
746 Winter: Notes from Montana Rick Bass book 1991 2015 Dec

That’s only the second time that’s happened since I started keeping track in 2010. The other was in December 2010:

208 Social Network, The David Fincher film 2010 2010 Dec
207 True Grit Joel and Ethan Coen film 2010 2010 Dec
206 Fighter, The David O. Russell film 2010 2010 Dec
205 Black Swan Darren Aronofsky film 2010 2010 Dec

All four of those films from 2010 made my best-of list that year, and yet I haven’t rewatched any of them besides The Social Network, so I couldn’t say whether they would still remain on my Best of 2010 list if I were to make a new one these five years later. Likewise, Creed and The Typewriter Revolution will make my 2015 lists (with Tangerine just missing the cut), but time will tell if they’ll stay there.

My criteria for earning a star are as diverse as the logbook itself, but my basic interpretation is whether that book or film could end up on my best-of list from whichever year it was made. So both of these streaks could be considered flukes given the inherent subjectivity of star-giving. On the other hand, that both occurred in December makes sense given the abundance of higher quality films in the thick of Oscar season.

With its mix of books and movies, old and new, the 2015 streak seems more unlikely—a conglomeration of providence and serendipity. I’m sure if I were to reread and rematch every movie and book on my list some would lose stars and some would gain them, so I won’t put too much stock in what’s essentially an anomaly. But that’s why I’m glad I started this logging practice: to document a fairly large part of my life, and to catch my first impressions and see how they fare in retrospect.

Still, I found it interesting enough to write a post about, so I have that going for me, which is nice.

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