I’m Chase Reeves. I collect and develop thoughts on how to make and live matterfully. Mostly for men. Make sense? Hmmm... lots of ‘m’s.

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“Happiness is a myth. It was invented to make people buy things.”

Karla in Shantaram

Julianne Moore on Little Flames

“Acting is like this little flame. If someone comes along and says, ‘this is what I think!’ they might just blow it out and then you can’t reach it anymore.”

Julianne Moore


Reminds me of what it’s like to have any idea, creative or commercial or a mix of the two.

“Make the right thing the easy thing.”

?


Wish I knew who’s responsible for this one, but I’ll be damned if it ain’t my favorite definition of design and philosophy of product development.

The Reeve Will Watch the Manor

“Originally in Anglo-Saxon England the reeve was a senior official with local responsibilities under the Crown e.g. as the chief magistrate of a town or district. Subsequently, after the Norman conquest, it was an office held by a man of lower rank, appointed as manager of a manor and overseer of the peasants. In this later role, historian H. R. Loyn observes, “he is the earliest English specialist in estate management.”

[…] Each unit had a court, and an officer to implement decisions of that court: the reeve. Thus different types of reeves were attested, including high-reeve, town-reeve, port-reeve, shire-reeve (predecessor to the sheriff), reeve of the hundred, and the reeve of a manor.”

Wikipedia


My last name is Reeves, so I found this lil’ wiki article a hoot. I have always had a knack for estate management.

What Samuel Beckett Wants

In 1932 a friend (Walter Lowenfels) asked Beckett, “You sit there saying nothing while the world is going to pieces. What do you want? What do you want to do?” Beckett, according to Bair, “crossed his legs and drawled: ‘Walter, all I want to do is sit on my ass and fart and think of Dante.’”

“It isn’t a principle until it costs you money.”

Bill Bernbach

David Vanderveen on Why We’re Afraid of Doubt

“We’re afraid of doubt only because we haven’t learned to love mystery yet.”

David Vanderveen


Not to “understand that it’s important” or to “get the sense that it undergirds everything” but to “love” mystery.

That is an interesting idea. How do you do that without becoming some unhinged crazy person?

Regardless this conversation was a delight to listen to for me.

Favorite Things I Wrote in 2014

I wrote quite a bit this year (I’ll attempt a full list at the bottom). But here’s a few of the pieces I think may just be pretty decent.

First of all, it should be said: this podcast is probably my favorite work of all. It’s not brief or clean, but I have the most fun here and speak most honestly in this verbal format. Ok, back to the list.


Greatest Hits This Year

Hopeful Perspectives 1 Year After My Son’s Birth/Death — Medium“It’s wednesday. Hump day. Last week we planned our first son’s 5th birthday party. This week we plan the remembrance of our second son’s birth and death.”

As I Write This. Depression, Anxiety & Entrepreneurship“I’m getting spun up, like a roiling boil. All this activity, all these thoughts, all this motion, and all of it so clearly pointless.”

One Simple Tip to Aim True & Stay Focused in Your Business — I get to talk about Marc Maron + Billy Connolly, that’s an instant hit right there. (God, i fucking hate headlines.)

10 Thoughts on Focus“You are a human. We think that’s your greatest business asset.”

Jim Henson’s 1961 Paper Animation — Just for the little poem I try to remind myself of from time to time.

Crave“So, last night I find myself going through old videos on YouTube. I stumbled across one that was so confusing and painful and brilliant and terrifying.”

Campaigns for George“Ever heard of George McGovern? There’s a story about this guy’s run for presidency that’s instructive for any of us looking to do good work in the world.”

Third Tier Lessons“That right there was the Third Tier moment: do we sheepishly hedge our bets, hoping to be at the right place at the right time to hear about the party more important people than myself will be going to?”

13 Successful Founders Share First Product Stories — Less of a written thing, but a lot of work and some great insights found.

10 Tactics to Better Work-Life Balance“What’s your job? What’s your life? How do they commingle, reflect and refract one another? What’s at stake if you screw this balance up? Your marriage? Your friendships? Your health? Your business success?”

Is Creative Fulfillment in a Career Possible“I used to fancy myself more of a creative. Almost an artist, but that’s, like, a heavy word, man.”

Insights About Customer Service That Will Change The Products You Make (FS067) — it’s a podcast, but the interview in here is still shaking my world up.

Failure Is An Option“I received an email today that my good friend’s company is shutting down, pulling the plug, closing up shop.”

2 Questions to ask Yourself About the “Equal Odds Rule”“Have you seen any Woody Allen movies? Whatever you think of Woody Allen, his love life or the quality of his movies you cannot argue with the sheer NUMBER of movies he’s put out over the course of his life.”


Everything I Wrote this Year

On The Sparkline

On Medium

On Ice to the Brim

  • Too much to recount, but I updated the editor’s picks with my favorites from the year.

Barrett, one of my partners on the podcast, said this a few months ago: “Work today for the body of work you want to have in 5 years” . It haunts me. I’m not sure what I want to have made in 5 years, but I’m pretty sure none of this is that. But there are bits and pieces, little truths and discoveries and hopefully places where someone feels a little more comfortable in their own skin.

Not sure what the theme of my work will be over the next year, let alone the next several, but my existential crisis (discussed in this talk at pioneer nation) led me to this: make people’s lives better in small and meaningful ways. That can’t be too hard, right?

“Work today for the body of work you want to have in 5 years.”

Barrett Brooks


He said this on our podcast a few months ago and I can’t shake it. I’m not sure what the body of work I want to have in 5 years is, but I know what I’m making right now isn’t it.

“We all spend way too much time practicing being crappy or mediocre. And we spend most of our time being exposed to people who are also crappy or mediocre at the thing we do.”

Kathy Sierra

Scenes From The Pervert’s Guide to Ideology

Watched this movie. Loved it. I was struck by each of the scenes. Feels like a masterclass in lighting and setup. The ideas are interesting also.

Here’s some of the scenes they re-created to make Žižek appear to be in the movies he’s discussing:


The Pervert's Guide to Ideology scene

The Pervert's Guide to Ideology scene

(more…)

Vonnegut on Boaz’s Revelation

“But Boaz had decided that he needed a buddy far more than he needed a means of making people do exactly what he wanted them to.”

Kurt Vonnegut


There were so many great lines from Boaz in The Sirens of Titan. Here’s some more:

“A purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved.”

“When you get right down to it, everybody’s having a perfectly lousy time of it, and I mean everyone. And the hell of it is, nothing seems to help much.”

“I found me a place where I can do good without doing any harm, and I can see I’m doing good, and them I’m doing good for know I’m doing it, and they love me, Unk, as best they can. I found me a home.”

A quick read and a good one.