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In which John discusses the rib he broke celebrating his 39th birthday, middle age, the relationship between body and mind, his new book, and a limited number of upcoming public appearances. TICKET INFO: Nerdcon Stories in Minneapolis: https://www.con-tix.com/nerdcon-stories-2016#/tickets

Nerdcon Nerdfighteria in Boston next February: https://www.con-tix.com/nerdconnerdfighteria#/tickets

Speech in Cleveland next May: http://case.edu/maltzcenter/wcs/speaker-lineup/john-green/

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Good morning, Hank, it's Tuesday. Today's video is like the ninth rib on my right side: it comes to you in two parts.

Part one: my rib. So, Hank, I broke my rib celebrating my thirty-ninth birthday last week. It's pretty uncomfortable, like, activities that have suddenly become extremely painful include sitting down, standing up, laughing, and also breathing. Also, for the record, filming YouTube videos isn't very comfortable. I really can't recommend any facet of the broken rib thing. This happens to be a particularly inconvenient time to have a broken rib (partly for reasons that will become clear in a couple weeks) and partly because the broken rib has coincided with a previously scheduled mid-life reflection.

So I've been middle-aged for a while in the sense that if you were to double my current age it would be a perfectly respectable human lifespan, but I've only recently begun to feel middle aged in the sense of being, you know, acutely aware that I'm not as young as I used to be. In fact, up until recently, I've felt much better than I did ten or twenty years ago because when I was younger I treated my body terribly. 

Like, I smoked cigarettes and steadfastly refused to exercise. I remember once when I was at boarding school (I was probably about sixteen) I ate nothing but nacho cheese Doritos and drank nothing but Mountain Dew for eight days straight. It was like a demented exploration of how poorly one can treat one's body before developing scurvy.

In those days I thought of my body as, like, a burden that I was biologically required to lug around. I thought living inside a body was the price I had to pay for consciousness, and I bought into the idea the the body wasn't just separate from the mind, but somehow the opposite of the mind.

I imagined my body as an adversary, like I was this thinking, feeling, capitalized noun, and my body was a lowercase animal that needed to be placated so I could go on thinking and feeling. This is a seductive line of reasoning, but ultimately a flawed one, of course, because there is no distinct line between body and mind.

Also, when I started treating my body better (I quit smoking in 2002, ran a mile for the first time since childhood in 2005) I found that I got better at the activities I most associated with my mind: reading and writing.

So anyway, having treated my body terribly when I was an adolescent and somewhat less terribly in my thirties, I have been able to feel relatively young for the last decade or so.

But now that time has passed; I am old and can no longer inhale without pain and there really isn't any moral to this story. Except, I guess, one, your body is a temple, do not fill it with Doritos, and also, two, do not fill it with beer on your thirty-ninth birthday, or else you will hurt yourself.

Alright, moving on. Part two: the future. So, Hank, it's been almost five years since my book The Fault in Our Stars was published. Lots of awesome has happened in my life in those five years: CrashCourse happened, as did The Art Assignment, Alice happened, some movies happened. But one thing that did not happen is that I have not published a new book.

So I have decided to clear my schedule for the next several months as I try to finish a draft of my new story, meaning that over the next ten months or so I will only be making three public appearances, which are as follows:

One, October 14th and 15th I will be at NerdCon: Stories in Minneapolis. While there I will be speaking on a few panels, recording a live edition of our podcast, and also talking a little bit about mental illness and creativity.

Two, in 2017 on February 25th and 26th I will be at NerdCon: Nerdfighteria in Boston. I'm very excited about that!

And three, on May 3rd of 2017 I will be in Cleveland, giving a speech on the topic of I-don't-know-what-yet because that seems very far away.

Ticket info for all those events can be found in the dooblydoo below. I'm sorry I'm not travelling more in the coming months, but I really, really, really want to finish a draft of the new book. So thanks for understanding and I hope to see a lot of you in Minneapolis, Boston, and/or Cleveland.

Hank, DFTNYBR. I will see you on Friday.