When we break...
"No one in the world ever gets what they want and that is beautiful.” - Ernest Cline, Ready Player One
The five:
** I hope everyone's having a great spring break. I’m still on the road, so the note's a bit short this week.**

  1. It’s never easy to get started, but when it comes to our health and happiness, it’s important to learn how to start. So, to that end, here’s a guide from the NYT on how to start working out and, from RadReads, Khe’s take on why creative projects are so difficult to start. Okay, starting new things is just hard, period. It helps to remember what’s urgent vs. what’s important.
  2. Just as difficult as knowing when to start is knowing when to stop, such as knowing when to stop trying to having a child, when to quit a dead-end job or when to stop looking at your phone and start looking at your partner. Speaking of partners, you may want to consider looking for like-hearted people, rather than like-minded people. That being said, can people change and can couples survive #MeToo? Relationships are hard, am'a’ right? Oh, and is everything good? If not, I recommend listening to this episode of Invisibilia.  
  3. Have you ever gone around the internet, landed on a weird image with big, block-letter text and wondered “What the absolute high holy dial-up modem is this thing?” It’s probably a meme, and here’s a definitive guide to them from Wired. You’re welcome. Speaking of guides, here’s one on how to find new music you’ll actually like, because if you’re like me you struggle with embracing anything outside of the Focus and Sleep playlists on Spotify. While we’re mixing things up, how about a bit more diversity in our nostalgia TV.
  4. The fall in bitcoin value is hurting South Korean youth, many of whom are just looking to get enough money to afford a place to live. Meanwhile, here in the States, homelessness and hunger are widespread among college students. Speaking of living, it turns out the self is other people, and that could have huge implications for how we design virtual reality experiences. Speaking of the future of things, have you ever heard of senescence? Neither had I, but if you’re interested in what happens when we age, you’ll want to read up. Also, testosterone is an important hormone, and for some men it’s high and for others it’s low, but a lot of factors go into which way the numbers go. protein conquered America, apparently.
  5. “He’ll give you a 100 takes if you want…” one of many reasons The Rock makes the big cheddar in Hollywood. If you want to be like The Rock, you may want to peruse this list of these life choices you’ll regret forever (forever!) and what to do about them. If you’re simply struggling with your to-do list for tomorrow, try the Ivy Lee method for getting sh*t done. If you just want to sit and play video games though, that’s cool too. Here’s how to do it without messing up your body (after finishing Ready Player One, I am so down to play some old school games). 
How to rekindle your friendships 🔥 🤝 🔥
Making friends as an adult is difficult, and keeping friends isn’t easy either. This has been particularly true for me this past year. More or less isolated in Palo Alto, I have spent many of my weekends alone doing laundry, writing, napping and going to yoga class. I had all but written off rekindling old friendships due to poor transportation systems and limited time and resources.  

As I mentioned last week, I have come to terms with the fact California is home for the time being because that is where I am. Home must be where I am. If it’s not, I will never know peace. One of the reasons I was reluctant to call California “home” is because I assumed that it meant my friendships would need to die because the distance was so great, but that is an old lesson learned in school and that ceases to be applicable afterwards.  

Friendships — relationships generally — need to defy geography. You can’t always be close to all of the people you love. Staying in touch can be difficult, however, when you lack the financial resources to travel. It just so happens I have resources I didn’t have before. It was part of the deal I made with myself when I decided to move back to California: only go back if you can accumulate the resources to spend time with the people you care about.  

So, this week, I made a decision to go to New York City and book a ton of meals and coffees with friends I missed dearly and had not seen in years. I was going to do nothing but make myself available for the people I cared about, including my partner.

I traipsed up and down Manhattan, leaning heavily into the glorious (but beleaguered) New York subway system. It rained almost constantly, but it was one of the best days of my life. I heard about work challenges, marriages, engagements, new babies. I hugged people who felt familiar and wonderful, and I asked as often as I could, “How can I be helpful?” I shed some light on where I ended up, how I got there and some background on choices I had made. I laughed with my friends and held their hands as they told me difficult stories of love and loss. They warmed every piece of me, reminding me that I am so much better for each and every one of them.  

I set aside any sadness I felt for missing their life milestones and replaced it with joy over their triumphs. I was so happy to see how each of them had grown, found their footing and were running teams and projects and telling award-winning stories. Each and every friend who spent time with me made me whole.  

The secret to rekindling friendships is setting everything else aside and just saying “go”. Go to the dinner, book it alongside the coffee, then book that alongside the lunch, the tea, the brunch, and the breakfast. Pack in as many people as you physically can. Say “no” to no one. Dedicate days to just being with people. Make a vacation of visiting with friends. 

This week, my only responsibility was my transportation and showing up on time. I didn’t make any other commitments. I just focused on my friends. That made it one of the best vacations I have ever had.  

Thank you to each and every friend who made time for me, hugged me, and shared with me. Thanks, especially, to my partner, Tim, for joining me and introducing me to Museum Hack — the best museum tour I’ve ever had — and one of the best dates he's treated me to yet.

This vacation was really a break from my lonely grind — a trip full of life, love and laughter. Make space for your friends and, if they are really your friends, they will fill that space with everything you need, stirring the embers of a fire that can never go out.  
A big, spring-season 'thank you'!
Thank you, as always to my two largest supporters: Natalya Pemberton & Tim Karu!

Natalya is a culture and design enthusiast learning Sustainable Systems at the innovative Presidio Graduate School.

Tim runs the Mercury Inn in Portland, Maine.

These folks have generously supported E is for Everything on Patreon. Please jump on through to learn more about both them and their projects.
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Do you wish I'd shared something else? Please send me recommendations via Facebook, Twitter at @emikolawole, on Medium or reply directly to this e-mail. I will always and whenever possible give credit where it's due for great recommendations and inspiration. Have a great weekend!
...we become stronger in the broken places.
Emi Kolawole · E is for Everything HQ · Palo Alto California 94306 · USA
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