North of the Internet has been on the road lately! I write to you today from a front porch among some green, rolling hills outside Nashville, Tennessee.
We returned this week with some meditative, thought-provoking conversations about patterns, oranges, shattered glass, chickens and stardust. May they forge new connections and bridges of understanding.
Dignity and introspection!
As NOTI approaches 200 conversations, an interesting shift has taken place in Week 17. Not a single conversation this week has been curated by either one of us.
Instead, our subjects have fully taken the reins, going on to have in-depth, unconventional conversations with friends, loved ones and those they admire. It’s spiraled out into 2D, 3D and for the very first time: 4D.
We’re going to take two weeks off for a visit to Chicago. We’ll see you all again in Week 20!
Dignity and introspection!
If you were to accurately look back on your entire life, how much of it would be graduations, birthdays, anniversaries and soccer games, and how much would it be vacancy?
Maybe we’re wrong on this, but it would seem that our actual lives might consist of looking at shabby infrastructure, waiting in lines, scrolling through sponsored ads and paying bills — whereas we may cut to the highlight reel while at death’s door.
Our Week 16 subjects are fearless in their embrace of life as perhaps being more soberly real than curated and idealistic.
But is it all a mirage?
We’ve all felt the occasional nostalgic ache, a longing for a past life situation, or a sensation that everything would be better if we could just “rewind.”
In those moments, I think it’s right to ask: who are you at all? Can you define a median point of yourself based on the versions you’ve presented to each person in your life? When you consider that, are past versions of ourselves valuable simply because they’re gone?
Our Week 15 subjects aren’t afraid to survey traditions, concepts and ideas of the past and grill the falsehood out.
We’ve only been around for a little less than a year, but a theme keeps popping up with those who really care to dig deep with us: can the mind study itself?
Maybe that’s a cliché of psychology, but I think it’s right to ask. We want to have self-aware conversations with creative human beings — not just your boilerplate promotional or egotistical ones.
This week, we have 5 great subjects who are more than willing to study who they are and how they fit into a broader picture of the world.
Are you but a drop in the sea?
What is the nature of noise? Not necessarily the daily noise we’re exposed to that’s just sort of filed away, but mental noise, unnecessary conversation, anxious baggage.
How would you react in a state of actual silence, where the nagging tension would erased? Would that lead to transcendence, or is the excessive static what makes us human?
We think our Week 13 subjects have the unique perspective necessary to neutralize the phantom unease a little bit.
P.S. We have made the switch from weekly to monthly email newsletters. Sign up here!
After carefully studying our analytics and feedback, we’ve made the decision to switch over from a weekly to monthly newsletter to cut down on unnecessary email bulk. We will continue our weekly updates in our Journal section.At the end of each month, expect a special, comprehensive newsletter from us that details our entire month of conversations!
So keep reading, keep sharing and keep loading up NOTI every day — and we leave you now with these five fascinating subjects.
Whatever you do, stay close to the North!
We write to you from the midst of a snowstorm in New York, working hard on delivering incredible new conversations to you.
Did you know our staff is a grand total of two friends living in two different parts of the world? Regardless, we convened in the city this week to discuss some exciting developments North of the Internet will be bringing you in 2018.
Beyond that, we hope you enjoy this week of intellectually nourishing, mind-expanding talks, which begins with one of my personal favorite artists of the 20th century. We certainly did.
We’re going to take a break from posts next week. We’ll see you in Week 12!
It’s only now become really clear to me after about 25 years how much loss all of us have to reckon with in our past, present and future.
In my case, it almost leads to a sense of resentment if you meet somebody who has seemingly dealt with zero adversity.
However, I think the right reaction is to reverse death in life — to live proudly in the face of grief, to look forward without losing sight of the gift of the people or things you had.
Maybe our Week 9 subjects can lead the way.
May their insights be of service!
If there’s one message I hope we can eventually convey with NOTI, it might be “Hey, you can’t just get in line.”
I hope we’re a tiny bit in opposition to the forces in our world that would like to limit our imaginations to a series of canned talking points and indignant tweets.
Try and think beyond the glowing screen this week, about how this form of reality hides an innate genius beyond what anyone could have guessed otherwise.
Maybe our Week 8 subjects can help.
Keep in touch!
The great Quincy Jones recently said this: “God is pushing the bad in our face to make people fight back.”
I wouldn’t blame anyone who feels like our global problems are coarsening lately, the unsavoriness digging in its heels, the divide widening between coolness and ugliness.
Luckily, we have our Week 7 subjects to see our global turmoil as a means to an end for transcendence.
Where’s your spiritual battle headed?
The part of the constellation Orion that contains the Horsehead Nebula contains some stunning juxtapositions of light and shadow, substance and negative space.
If you take a look at a photo, the dark clouds of the Horsehead are opaque like thick ink, while the Orion Nebula is diffused, ethereal.
I see our Week 6 subjects as possessing a unique ability to make out what’s beyond the glass, darkly.
PS. All of our conversations now follow a background color system as per each curator. Browse and enjoy!
We’re increasingly living in an arbitrary, linear world where little moments of awe are made out to be quaint or irrelevant.
What if a sliver of energy we spent worrying about exes, brunch, losing ten pounds, our online aesthetic, getting to work on time and negative Twittering was spent gobsmacked by a leaf or a lizard?
Our Week 5 subjects are interested in the world for what it is, not what it’s agreed upon to be.
What ordinary things blow your mind?
We tend to spend our lives forming a vast, intricate identity, adding daily information to inform our personality, philosophy and tastes.
But what happens when you strip all that identity-building away? When it really comes down to the wire, which aspects will prevail as the true “you”?
We think our Week 4 subjects meditated on that idea.
Who are you this time?
In the field of organic chemistry, it’s not the molecules that are of greatest interest — it’s the unique connections between them.
It’s not too big a deal if you’ve got a carbon surrounded by hydrogens. But the right connections between them really can explode the whole program, creating something brand-new in a miraculous way.
I appreciate this week’s subjects because they can draw connections between seemingly unrelated thoughts and make them harmonious.
Can you untie what’s been tied?
Out of the heavy weather of 2017, we step into a forest clearing, a silent respite of blank newness.
That’s where our first conversation of 2018 took place, between two multidisciplinary artists on a grimy bench right near the Pacific Ocean.
From there, our subjects expounded into the realms of insects, trumpets, clouds, death and the Alaskan wilderness.
We hope the new year finds you all in good health!