The Sun Never Sets: On Roger Federer, Endings, and Wimbledon

Who knows what goes on in any athlete’s head, but he comes across as someone who has genuinely found a way to solve the three brutal overlapping problems that come for any really great athlete late in his or her career. Namely, how to a) keep up the phenomenal and borderline terrifying level of motivation required to commit to nonstop training and preparation after you’ve already realized all your goals, while b) making peace with the fact that you not only aren’t as good as you once were but in fact are doomed to get worse, while c) maintaining a realistic, evolving sense of what you can do so that you know how to plan and when to feel proud, frustrated, optimistic, etc.

The Sun Never Sets: On Roger Federer, Endings, and Wimbledon

GQ&A: Kobe Bryant

Do you ever think that the qualities that make you great are actually problems?

Oh, yeah. But the things that make a person average are also problems. The things that make someone not good at anything at all are a problem. If you want to be the greatest of all-time at something, there’s going to be a negative side to that.

GQ&A: Kobe Bryant

A Wealth of Words by E. D. Hirsch, Jr., City Journal WInter 2013

There’s a positive correlation between a student’s vocabulary size in grade 12, the likelihood that she will graduate from college, and her future level of income. The reason is clear: vocabulary size is a convenient proxy for a whole range of educational attainments and abilities—not just skill in reading, writing, listening, and speaking but also general knowledge of science, history, and the arts. If we want to reduce economic inequality in America, a good place to start is the language-arts classroom.

A Wealth of Words by E. D. Hirsch, Jr., City Journal WInter 2013

Never be ashamed of how you live or where you from.
You stack a mill’, ***s will see how far you come.

T.I. – Be Better Than Me. My favorite song on Trap Musik besides Look What I Got. Here’s T.I. on the proper ingredients for success:

Stay down, stay on your grind and yo digits’ll come.
Bottom line? You gotta shine, no matter what you become.
These streets is 40 percent of yo’ mind and 5 percent muscle,
10 struggle, 10 time, and 35 percent hustle.

TMR: An Interview with George Saunders

meaghano:

George Saunders in a wonderful, wonderful interview.

Success is nice because then you don’t have to worry so much about having been unfairly robbed of your very richly deserved success. Success is bad because momentary good fortune can temporarily hide the fact that you are still, despite your success, full of shit.

So much good stuff here:

Interviewer: So much of your fiction is charged with social import. Given our recent political upheavals, have you ever thought of writing overt political satire?

Saunders: I’m not very interested in that kind of satire because it works on the assumption that They Are Assholes. Fiction works on the assumption that They Are Us, on a Different Day.

And:

Any mastery you can achieve in writing is totally personal and incredibly nuanced. It’s a sort of antimastery, feeling comfortable with being unsure.

And also:

One of the wonderful benefits of energetically pursuing a writing career is that I’ve come to understand the staggering limitations of my abilities. […] So one way I cope with this humbling state of affairs is via a little mantra: If I just stay fully engaged in whatever has presented itself, things will be fine. That is, I try not to think about things like: Next, I begin MY NOVEL!

TMR: An Interview with George Saunders