On Time, Storytelling, and the New “Content” Industry

Justin E. H. Smith in his Substack Newsletter:

Is there any bit of popular philosophical wisdom more useless than the pseudo-Epictetian injunction to “live every day as if it were your last”? If today were my last, I certainly would not have just impulse-ordered an introductory grammar of Lithuanian. Much of what I do each day, in fact, is premised on the expectation that I will continue to do a little bit more of it the day after, and then the day after that, until I accomplish what is intrinsically a massively multi-day project. If I’ve only got one more day to do my stuff, well, the projects I reserve for that special day are hardly going to be the same ones (Lithuanian, Travis-style thumb-picking) by which I project myself, by which I throw myself towards the future. If today were my last day, I might still find time to churn out a quick ‘stack (no more than 5000 words) thanking you all for your loyal readership. But the noun-declension systems of the Baltic languages would probably be postponed for another life.

More here.