Jason Shen quoted me on his website -
I’ve got some sets of names I’d name my sons as they’re born. They’re unconventional names – Cosimo Marshall or Aurelius Marshall if the boy’s mother was Italian, Zhuge Marshall if he was Chinese. The boy will likely get teased.
That’s fine, tease back.
But son, as soon as someone puts their hands on you, they’ve crossed a line. Fuck them up. It’s the only thing these vicious freaks understand. They’re wild animals. They make violence on you, you need to show them that you’re the stronger, bigger animal. When someone attacks you maliciously for no reason, you need to impose your will on them.
-Sebastian Marshall – Blogger, Strategist
And you know what it feels like? It's really, really strange.
Well, first, let me say thanks to Jason and recommend his site to you. He's an extremely cool, smart, and friendly person who has shared some good iPhone app recommendations with me, and we've swapped a few interesting emails in the past.
If you're new to his site, you might consider checking out his "Rejection Therapy" series -
Actually, his whole site - jasonshen.com - is interesting, if you started with whatever's new and rapidly skimmed, I'm sure you'd find a post that fascinates you pretty quickly.
As for getting quoted? Man, it's weird. You know why? Because moods and thoughts gradually shift over time. When writing the, "Son..." post, that's like 99th percentile assertiveness Sebastian. Oh, don't get me wrong. I fully agree with everything I wrote and I stand by all of it. But there's probably only one day out of every three months that I'd put it quite like that.
The rest of the time, I read what I wrote and go, "Huh. Did I write that? Yeah, that's my writing. It's true and I believe in it, fully, but whoa, that was a pretty aggressive way of putting it." The rest of the time, I'd have probably been more neutral and diplomatic.
Y'know, it wasn't a carefully refined, carefully edited piece shaped over many months. That was raw thought and reaction to reading about a guy talking about being bullied as a kid, and my general outrage at the "love the bullies" misinformation idiocy that's pervasive today.
But still, 99 days out of 100, I probably wouldn't put it quite like that. So it's weird. I have some chicken, rice, and vegetables for dinner. I have a coffee because I'm going to stay up late, I read some "Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality" by Eliezer Yudkowsky, and then I go through my inbox and see myself quoted in a Google Alert.
And I'm like - "Whoa. I wrote that?" Well, yes, I did. Huh. I'm half proud of myself (wow, I really said it like it is there, no fluff or sugarcoating) and half surprised.
Have you ever written a journal entry when you were really up or really down, then read it later? It's like, "Huh, this is my handwriting, and yeah, I can see how I'd be thinking/feeling that, but in a way it's... weird..."
I think is actually a potential problem for new bloggers or people who go on TV for the first time, and things like that. You write something in a peak state (excitement, assertiveness, confidence) or otherwise altered (inspired, intoxicated, angry, maximum optimism, whatever) and then other people want to discuss it with more normalized you.
I could see myself on a TV interview getting asked, "So, Mr. Marshall, you think a bullied kid should fuck the bully up, do you?" And I think my first response would be, "Uhhhh, ummmm...."
Now, if you caught top 1% assertiveness Sebastian, he'd take that ball and run with it pretty easily. But the rest of the time, it's kind of surreal thinking about max-assertiveness me and reading what max-assertiveness me writes. Or max-optimism me, or max-creative me, or max-inspired, or whatever. The rest of the time, normal ol' Sebastian's feet are held to the fire for what max-state-whatever Sebastian said.
I don't know what the answer to this is. Learn to think faster, think on my feet, I suppose. I've heard that many people, once they get famous, go through "media training" to kind of decently non-answer their way through questions when they don't have a great answer to.
There's many upsides to doing creative work, but this is a strange thing you should be ready for. You, at maximum inspiration or righteous indignation or creativity or whatever, are going to say and do things. Then normal you are going to get asked about them or quoted on it.
It's flattering, in a sense. But it's also strange and scary. It's probably something you should anticipate and prepare for if you're doing creative work of some sort. Flattering and cool in a way. But also very strange.