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Oh, okay. Yeah, no, now I get it.

Sometimes it takes a while to understand something.

Like, when you stay at an Airbnb and they explain the shower to you, that you got to fully open the hot water, then give it a tiny bit of cold, then back off the cold quickly, other wise it’ll be absolutely freaking freezing for the next ten minutes, then give it a wee bit more hot water, then back it off, then go and make breakfast. Then come back 25 minutes later and it should be all sweet. It takes time to get something like that.

Just like it took me over 12 years to get this quote from Hamlet:


The aphoristic punchiness of that quote was always something romantic and powerful to me (and was always my most memorable of Shakespeare’s). In hindsight, I’m not sure why that was, but I knew it meant something significant. And now I realise it’s basically what every self-help guru say (about 400 years after Shakespeare wrote it).

You can’t control what others do, but you can control your reaction to it. The only thing you have complete control over is your own mind. The actions, and the opinions of all the 6, 999, 999, 999³ other people on this bigass planet, you have none over.

This is what the Player King says, as part of an extended monologue, in its entirety (from Act 3, Scene 2):

But, orderly to end where I begun,
Our wills and fates do so contrary run
That our devices still are overthrown;
Our thoughts are ours, their ends none of our own:


¹ I had a friend write that up because she had cool handwriting, that was also much less demented than mine. Then I singed the edges of it² and layered it in a pretty average way to make it artistic and then put it on a whole page of the University magazine I was editor of at the time in 2004, just because I could and that seemed like a good use of students’ fees.

² In the process I almost started a fire in the magazine’s offices. Fortunately I was near a water supply to put it out.

³ You know, more or less.