This is the true athlete: the person in rigorous training against false impressions. Remain firm, you who suffer, don’t be kidnapped by your impressions! The struggle is great, the task divine — to gain mastery, freedom, happiness, and tranquility.

Photo from 26 Oct 2020

I have previously shared on social media that working out regularly in the gym has helped me combat and cope with symptoms of depression. On another layer of my life, becoming a gym rat has helped me practice and learn discipline in pushing my comfort zone.


Why do people stop going to the gym? It’s a decent survey question but…

An article for coming out

Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

I will turn 32 this year. I’ve known I am gay for the last 20 years of my life. I started telling friends in 2015, the year I first had a boyfriend. I don’t advertise my sexuality but the news should not shock anyone who pays attention to the content of my conversations (e.g., my comments on another man’s appearance or how I talk about Robert Pattinson a lot).

There are a lot of reasons I haven’t been open about my sexual orientation. Some of those reasons overlap, at least one of them should not be difficult to imagine, and…

I am no longer a christian

by Mary Ruefle

I think the sirens in The Odyssey sang The Odyssey, for there is nothing more seductive, more terrible, than the story of our own life, the one we do not want to hear and will do anything to listen to.

Faith is believing something to be true, regardless of the evidence or information available. As strange as this will seem, I still have faith in Jesus Christ. The reason I am no longer a christian is because the word has lost its meaning to me. Though someone says they’re a christian it does not mean they…

“The cosmos is about the smallest hole a man can hide his head in.” — G. K. Chesterton

What man looks out on the world and thinks he cannot conquer it? A weak man would feel shame at his weakness. The strong man would feel pride at his daring. The wise man would feel nothing at all, and go about living his life instead of dreaming.

He doesn’t concern himself with fame or fortune, the passions of the popular are tales of sound and fury. He values the silence not as a judgment on his own life, but as a friend who helps him. It is there every time he suffers, and it is there every time he…

Photo by Scott Graham on Unsplash

Behind some books on the bookshelf I use to hide my home networking equipment is a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ loaded with software to make the device a Pi-hole: a black hole for advertising distribution and tracking methods. This article will show the setup process I used to restore some more of my screen space (and some privacy) by making the Pi-hole a DNS proxy for web browsing. I primarily use Mac OS for development and so some steps were easier to perform in the terminal. …

An examination of two words

It’s curious how we use the phrase to connote sex. I wonder if there’s more potential behind those two words. I make such a wondering fully conscious of the irony of thinking of something that has more potential than procreative sex, but I think that’s where my interest starts.

When someone says he was “making love” to someone else, the weight of the phrase moves toward the noun: the verb ‘making’ is an action of progress, and ‘love’ is the object, or focus. Usually, the context of the phrase is given in a romantic relationship between two people.

Perhaps there…

An essay exploring themes in the Best Picture winning film from director Bong Joon Ho

Still frame photo of Ki-jung and Ki-woo in the semi-basement bathroom
Still frame photo of Ki-jung and Ki-woo in the semi-basement bathroom
Ki-jung and Ki-woo in the semi-basement bathroom

I had no idea what Parasite was before I walked into the Ritz 5 in Philadelphia. The journey that led me to this particular theater was mostly instigated by my desire to see the Delaware River, and then the Internet told me the film was playing nearby. This was my first time in Philly, so my state of mind was already primed to be cognizant to the difference of culture. This coincidentally appropriate reality helped me connect with Bong Joon Ho’s Oscar-sweeping picture on a level I hope to articulate in this essay. Obviously, there will be many spoilers ahead…

An abridged history of the Trump presidency

The United States of America has had quite a journey since the inauguration of Donald Trump as president on January 20, 2017. I remember the complex emotions of that day: witnessing the peaceful transition of power from one government to another inspired sober awe; still wrestling with the knowledge that a credibly accused serial sex offender was ascending to the highest political office of the land invoked a confused stupor. My facebook feed was quite busy that day, as I had taken the occasion to commemorate the infamous recording of Trump talking to Billy Bush.

Facebook, January 20, 2017


Reflections on visiting places old and new

City Hall, Philadelphia, PA

In April 2019, a friend encouraged me to travel more. He was suggesting international travel. I thought that idea was nuts. At the time, I was inexperienced in traveling domestically and rarely visited new cities, and I had never gone somewhere I didn’t know anyone. I decided that to take his advice I had to do it in baby steps to expose myself to the life of a jetsetter.

In the summer of 2019, I began making quick trips away from my home base in Jackson, Mississippi. Atlanta, New Orleans, Birmingham, and Nashville were all places I have been before…

An essay exploring the storytelling treasures of the arthouse horror film by Ari Aster

Opening mural from Midsommar

Fans of Ari Aster will be familiar with his divisive and provocative work as a filmmaker. He dives deep into cultural taboos in his short films Munchausen and The Strange Thing About the Johnsons. It should not shock anyone who has seen this work that his feature length films would embody his unique style of storytelling into immersive, expansive stories. The cultish depths of Aster’s film Midsommar (2019) let the filmmaker explore societal anxieties surrounding death and grief in compelling and disturbing clarity. One of the more impressive qualities Aster delivers in this summer horror film is the sheer quantity…

Michael Lamb

software engineer | culture nerd | reader

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