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Mementos & Milestones

Published 10 months ago • 4 min read

My unanticipated spring break nears its end.

What I've been up to

  • I accepted a new job at a financial tech company and begin next week. The job search process has never been appealing to me, but at this point in my career, it was a lot less painful than before! Even during a period of record layoffs in the tech industry, it took roughly ten weeks of fairly unhurried searching. I applied to ten-ish places, interviewed with 3 of them, and negotiated an offer significantly better than what I had.
    • When I became a full-time employee at my previous company, after two years of contract work, I let myself buy a modest automatic dive watch as a memento to celebrate. I thought about doing something similar for this job, but I still wear that watch every day without any desire for a new one, and I'm not really in any hurry to buy anything else. I did, however, recently get a 30-year-old aged sheng pu-erh tea that I've been saving for an occasion like this, and I'm looking forward to enjoying that with an unsuspecting friend.
  • I wound up at a secret 16mm screening of The Seventh Seal (1957) on Friday—my first Bergman film. This is my third film I've seen with this little group, and I love hearing the whir of the film projector in the small, dark room, and recognizing a few of the faces of people who seem to be regulars.
  • I sent my first box of tea and teaware to a friend! I still have extra gaiwans and lots of tea for exactly this purpose, so I'm anticipating continuing to nudge more people into the hobby. Watch out, pals.
  • I took a close friend to see her favorite band, Saves The Day, in Boston for their 20th and 25th anniversaries of their albums In Reverie and Can't Slow Down. This was definitely one of those shows that was so memorable that it gave me a new appreciation for the band I was seeing. I can see myself spending a lot more time with their discography in years ahead after having such a good time with early tracks like Always Ten Feet Tall and Anywhere With You. Also, singing along to Freakish with the crowd for the little encore was just too much fun.
    • It's also a treat looking back at their old music videos, because before emo had a "look," it was just nerdy boys in polo shirts and button downs. I love that.

What I've been into

  • It's that time of the year where I just want to drink matcha all the time, and I'm leaning into it. A few days ago I sat in the park under some oaks with a friend and had a very casual nodate (open-air) ceremony with some mochi; it was lovely 🍵
  • I've been following along with the Blank Check podcast's new series on the filmography of Buster Keaton, and I'm having a great time going through these films. I watched Three Ages (1923) and Our Hospitality (1923) last week, and this week I'm inviting a friend to watch Sherlock Jr. (1924) and The Navigator (1924)—these feel too fun to watch alone.
  • I crossed another Wong Kar-Wai film off my list and watched Chungking Express (1994). I didn't love it as much as In The Mood For Love (2000), but it was visually stunning, and had a few shot motifs of framerates manipulated in really striking ways.
  • There have been so many incredible music releases lately that I hardly know where to start.
    • Citizen's vocalist, Mat Kerekes, has a new record that sounds incredible. His live online performance of Pick and Choose blew me away. This guy makes so much music.
    • Hot Mulligan's latest record is great. I think my favorite track is "John 'The Rock' Cena, Can You Smell What The Undertaker" (Spotify, Apple Music)
    • Other than those two, I've been listening to the new record from The National, some new straightforward rock records from Dave Hause and Cal Stamp, and some heavier stuff from Cattle Decapitation and The Acacia Strain. I also caught the metal track 30 under 13 by Better Lovers, a new supergroup of current and former members of The Dillinger Escape Plan, Every Time I Die, and Fit for an Autopsy. And for something in another direction entirely, someone pointed me towards Damian Marley, so I've been listening to Welcome To Jamrock a lot. This track has been in my head way too much.

Musings

The air smells so good this time of year.

What about you?

Up to anything interesting? Do you have a special way to celebrate milestones in your own life? Reply to this email and I’ll write you back ✉️✨



understated

A cozy personal newsletter of creative projects and life updates.

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