Art

Stay Awesome

Here’s an assertion: you’re already awesome. I don’t mean awesome like a hot dog, I mean breathtaking supernova of expanding celestial energies. I mean Mr. Rogers kind and Grace Hopper skilled. As perceptive as a hungry jackal and twice as cunning. I hear you saying it’s not true, and you might be right. But it’s important to think the best of ourselves. It changes how we act, and how we think about improvement. There are lots of parts of life where we see other people and think “How do I get that cool?” But you’re already cool. The real challenge is staying awesome.

Works in progress

I’m fascinated with self-improvement stuff. Learning new skills, trying new things, making changes to habits and routines, experimenting with new artistic styles, you name it. But one of the barriers is feeling like we’re starting from the bottom. It’s a hard hill to climb, and doesn’t acknowledge or own how far we’ve come already. Everything feels like a huge change. But if you start at the top, then it’s a series of minor adjustments. You’re at the helm, and you’re making small course corrections to get you where you want to be.

So we make videos about tiny things. A moment at a wedding. The chance to disrupt a routine. Freezer bags. The tiny lies we tell. Never advice, always things to think about. The goals are to give people interested in those kinds of changes something to watch on the toilet, and to mark those changes for ourselves. They’re a reminder to future us things we committed to, and invocations to keep us going when we forget.

Origins

In our first podcast, when neither of us had any idea what the language was or how that worked, we didn’t have a thing to say at the end. Huck came out with “Stay awesome” as a one-off, and we thought about it. It became a running theme. Try, fail, try again. But recognize your own value. Know you’re worth it from the start.

When we retired the podcast at the end of 2017, after four years, Stay Awesome was the next move. Forty minute conversations became four minute letters to ourselves and to the audience. The tiny adjustments we need to stay on track. The weird things to try, and the things that work in our lives. Shouting in the dark.

Brutal truth

Sometimes people tell me no one is awesome all the time. The fundamental assumption is fatally flawed. Some people are never awesome, preferring to be cruel and shitty. Staying awesome is a lie. A delusion. And no one cares. It does not matter. It is a thought that sustains us, and that’s the only bit that’s relevant. It’s about overcoming our mediocrity together.

Stay Awesome is about hard work, tiny improvements, making videos and having fun. And spreadsheets. So many spreadsheets. Checkk it out on our channel, Woot Suit Riot.

Jim Tigwell

A survivor of two philosophy degrees, Jim Tigwell spends his days solving interesting problems in software. By night he can be found at poetry slams and whatever art opening has the strangest cheese selection. Host of the biweekly Concept Crucible podcast and occasional blogger, Jim is also a juggler, musician, magician, and maker of digital things. You can find his music and videos at Woot Suit Riot, a channel that doubles as a home for wayward and timid creators. Observe his antics there, or heckle directly on Twitter @ConceptCrucible. If the software and internet game doesn’t pan out, he’s determined to be a great Canadian vampire hunter.

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