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Greetings from on holiday

We're at the midway point of a weeklong minibreak, a modest hour's drive from Amsterdam on the Dutch coast. It's pretty great to be away and walking dunes, eating some seafood on the beach and, as you can see in the photo above, spotting the occasional bunny rabbit on the playground.

(Yes, I know you can't see it, but they could. And that's what matters here).

As a small sidenote: I forgot my phone charger in Amsterdam. I ordered one online which arrived yesterday, but in-between I had three holiday days completely without my phone and it was glorious. A little inconvenient at times, but way more enjoyable than I expected.

In this email I share a rap video, a few thoughts on combatting disinformation, and a short blog on how I'm learning to love incompetence. Enjoy! 

Ryman Illar Aces & Eights

I hope you enjoyed the video as much as I enjoyed making it. Here's a bit more info on the process, if you'd like to go behind the music.

Globally, things aren't great

As much as I'm enjoying being away for a week, the world is still deeply fucked; ravaged by coronavirus, rife with systemic racism, relentlessly pummeled by environmental degradation. At the same time, we're also being inundated with mis- and disinformation on the aforementioned.

I just hope you're doing your part to be a force for good, in your small personal bubble, your larger web of acquaintances and also to strangers in real life and online.

One thing I've been doing recently is posting Snopes links, media bias rankings, and other debunks on Facebook posts from high school "friends" and Aunt Karens. Not to argue, but just politely put some facts/counterpoints down.

It's not much (and I'm certainly not bragging), but I've found that speaking up (online and offline) is much better than passivity. Both for the world and for myself. Besides, being non-racist isn't enough anymore. Nor was it ever.

Embracing incompetence

On the topic of getting better at things, I've been thinking a lot about the process of learning. Because I've found the key to unlocking a lifetime of learning: embracing being bad at stuff.

I wrote a short blog piece about it too: incompetence is the gateway.
The Prophecies of Q -- I've been reading a bunch about QAnon and other crackpot conspiracy-minded groups. It's sobering because it's utterly ridiculous, if it weren't so terrifying.

When Edgy Comedy is Actually Lazy -- This is a good and in-depth read exploring how comedians use PC police and triggered snowflakes-type language and attitudes to defend hacky material.
Copyright © 2020 Ryan Millar, All rights reserved.

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