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How do you find the space between panic and complacency?

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Good morning John,


Crisis: what kind of crisis do you want? You want a constitutional crisis? Got a couple of those a week. Housing crisis? Sure. Existential crisis? Always. Climate crisis? Yeah, scientists would like for you to panic.

Let’s just go over to Google and see if we can come up with a word and see if there’s a crisis about it. Oh great, Chiquita would like you to know what they’re doing about the banana crisis.

So apparently, we’re having a crisis crisis, a crisis of crises and I’m a properer middle aged man, so are you John- we should know how to deal with this. So here’s like number 1 strategy- Avoidance: so start out, you gotta listen to Shaky Shaky by Daddy Yankee- you might find solace in other activities. YouTube videos might be good for you, poetry, poetry YouTube videos, potato plants or a friend or a dog.

What am I saying? I’m saying that first you gotta find your Shaky Shaky- you gotta connect with yourself as like a living sack of thinking flesh which is amazing right- it’s beautiful and majesty and like as far we know, unique in the universe.

It’s so isolating to be in a crisis right. To think that everything’s going terribly and it’s just and you have no path forward and like yeah, I recognise that these are real problems but it’s not solving anything to be like just in a terrified state of panic.

I am one of the climate advocates who will say no, no I don't, I don’t think that panic will help. I think it would make sense to panic- panic is a normal emotion to have given the circumstances but not the most helpful one.

I think that having all of these crises makes it harder to connect because it seems like all those things out there are more important than all of these things in here- all of the taking care of yourself, the valuing yourself and the valuing of the other people in your life.

Am I writing a book about this right now? Sure, sure, yes so I’m thinking about it a lot and I’m very tired because I’m Australia hung over. Had to many VBs- no I just didn’t sleep enough.

I think that paying attention is important, I think that engaging with it is important, I think that there is a certain amount of constant connection that like looking for, dragging through, trying to get the thing at the moment so I could just put tweets in my mouth like the peanut M&Ms until I can’t even chew, there’s so many in there. Thats how I want to engage with the crisis but like, 4 peanut M&Ms in your mouth, and I know this from experience, is not better than having 2; 17 is too many, it’s unhealthy, it’s messy and it’s not enjoyable.

Here’s my middle aged man take: Just because we’re not doing something perfect doesn’t mean that we’re not doing it. Taking climate as an example here, I know that the denial is discouraging, I know that there have been a lot of deadlines crossed up to this point but we have started down a lot of very promising interesting paths; the fact that America is like down below 1995 levels of Carbon Dioxide is wild. I wouldn’t of been able to tell you back then how we were gonna do it- just like nobody knows how we’re gonna get through our various messes. We’ve got ideas but we won’t know how we solve the problem until we solve the problem. It’s deeply important for me to feel like I can find a place between panic and complacency- I know that place exists and here’s how I find it.

I imagine that the problem is this huge mountain that we have to clime but we can’t see the ground, we can’t see the path, we can’t see the top. So all I can do is take one step that feels like it’s in the right direction and encourage my leaders to take steps in those directions as well. To some extent, the reason that we can’t do this stuff is cuz we don’t, we literally don’t know how we’re gonna solve problems until we solve them. So we take the step and things get better. We get a little higher up over the obstacle.

So my way is to remember that all of the crises so far were solved in ways we didn’t understand they would be solved. We couldn’t have predicted that future, we couldn’t have predicted this future and so when I think I don’t know how to solve this problem, that’s always how it is. We never know how to solve the problem. We, thus far, just work a lot- as individuals, as a collective- and then we get there. So far.

John, I’ll see you on Tuesday.

[Dances to Daddy Yankee’s Shakey Shakey]