“I do things like get in a taxi and say, ‘The library, and step on it.’”
-from Infinite Jest

David Foster Wallace’s commencement speech to Kenyon College in 2005 has been marinating in my mind. It’s just what I needed to revisit today. If you have a minute, I strongly encourage you to read. Maybe today’s not your Tuesday (or, maybe it is) and you need a nugget too.

 

DFW at a Manhattan bookstore in 2006 (NYT)

DFW at a Manhattan bookstore in 2006 (NYT)

 

 

The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day.

That is real freedom. That is being educated, and understanding how to think.

The alternative is unconsciousness, the default setting, the rat race, the constant gnawing sense of having had, and lost, some infinite thing.

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