👋 Welcome

An update about small towns, individualism, and podcast recommendations.

Welcome! And thanks to every one of you who signed up. This is my first attempt at a newsletter, so feel free to hit reply and let me know what you like and dislike.

The blog hit a bit of a lull as I recovered after a long journey back from 2 weeks in Asia. I’m back now, and will be sharing a few things a week on the blog and a couple updates a month here.

Small towns

I’m still thinking about an article I read a couple weeks ago about small towns and the American dream. I don’t know what the future of towns like Orange City, Iowa looks like. But it’s an area of demographics and development I’m curious about.

Along these lines I’ve been reading a lot from two blogs: Market Urbanism and Strong Towns. Market Urbanism tends to focus a lot on development within cities and Strong Towns looks across the spectrum at what makes, well, a strong and healthy town. One great place to start is this article about Lafayette, Louisiana and the real reason your city has no money.

Individualism and recent reading

History does not study material facts and institutions alone; its true object of study is the human mind: it should aspire to know what this mind has believed, thought, and felt in different ages of the life of the human race.

- Fustel de Coulanges

I recently finished Inventing the Individual, a book about western liberalism and individualism. If you want the short version you can read the three things I’m hoping to remember from the book. And if you’re okay with a little more academic style of reading I’d recommend picking up the book.

On the subject of reading, I added a page that tracks my reading list. I’m aiming to backfill notes on those recent ones over the coming weeks. And I’ll post notes for most books going forward.

Podcast recommendations

For a long time I listened to the same slate of 4 or 5 podcasts. Recently I’ve been trying to branch out and add new ones to my queue. My two favorites among the bunch are Craig Mod’s On Margins and Jocelyn K. Glei’s Hurry Slowly. Spending almost 80 hours on a plane last month certainly helped with my podcast listening routine.

That’s all for now. If you enjoyed reading, feel free to share. And you’ll hear from me again in a few weeks.

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