Cover photo


On bottles. Co-Intelligence. Filterworld. A Few Dollars More.

Luna // 12 Months // On Bottles

This week, I put Luna's bottles away and experienced a sadness entirely new to me.

The ritual of feeding my baby a bottle is one of the earliest and most cherished memories I have of being a parent. The darkness of the room, the gentle recline of the rocking chair, the warmth of her against my chest — it's a moment etched into my heart with a profound and indelible power.

But now, that chapter has closed. Luna, in all her joyful curiosity, has moved on to sippy cups. straws, and solid foods.

As I placed the bottles into a plastic bag, I felt a pang of almost existential hurt, sharper than any I’ve felt before. Previous losses, while poignant, were always balanced by a sense of gain - the reclamation of my bedroom from Luna's bassinet, the heart-bursting delight of her first toothy grin in absence of her infant toothless smile.

This felt different. The bottles, once so vital to her growth and nourishment, were now useless — maybe even detrimental to the bright, babbling baby who no longer needed them — and there was no shiny new phase to balance out their loss.

Like so many bittersweet "lasts" of early parenthood, the end of Luna's bottles blindsided me with its suddenness. There was no pomp or circumstance to our final bottle, no sentimental sense of occasion. Just the quiet reality of moving on to what comes next.

There’s a finality to seeing the bottles sitting inert in a plastic bag. Will they be passed on to a friend, donated, or stored for a potential next baby? I'm not ready to decide yet. Packing them away was difficult enough, an acknowledgment that this chapter is definitively over.

Now that’s it’s over, I’m recognizing that the endless cycle of filling and washing and filling again was never really about the milk. It was a tangible representation of my most elemental purpose as her parent: To feed her, to hold her, to love her.

Parenthood is agreeing to break your own heart, over and over. It is constantly allowing your love to take new forms as you surrender to your child's changing needs. It is being tethered and set adrift, all at once.

These changes, these little losses, are the cost of bearing witness to her unfolding. So I'll put away the bottles and feel the ache of what's been lost. But the love? The love remains.

What I Read

Two books this week, both about the digital world we live in:

Co-Intelligence advocates for AI in a very straightforward way…perhaps too straightforward. I fear this book may be outdated within months as it's so rooted in the AI systems of this present moment. It likely won't age well as they continue to rapidly evolve.

This isn't written for those already using AI, but for the skeptics and confused. For that audience, it does a great job painting a future where AI makes the world better instead of worse. I think that's a worthwhile perspective to put out there amidst the fear and negativity.

Using a similar structure, Filterworld attempts to explain the algorithms that rule our digital lives today, controlling everything from social feeds to music platforms, influencing how we communicate, create, and connect.

The author worries the lack of human curation in algorithms robs us of true connection. He points to the Criterion Channel as the best of what the internet could be: Unparalleled access combined with world-class human curation.

There was much I appreciated in Filterworld's analysis, but one issue nagged at me. The author often admits he's bad at social media, "tweeting into the void" and comparing posting to playing a pointless game on his phone. With all due respect, that's a skill issue.

So many people understand the internet, but still don't grasp how to effectively use it. The author falls into this camp. Social media and online spaces are akin to any social environment, requiring emotional intelligence, nuance, and finesse to navigate well. Dismissing it because you’re bad at using it feels incorrect.

Both books spotlight critical issues as we hurtle into an AI-powered, algorithm-driven world. How do we preserve human agency and connection? What role should AI play? These are key questions as technology reshapes society, and while imperfect, these books are earnest attempts to grapple with our new reality.

What I Watched

Hooked into a western mood from watching Roadhouse and A Fistful of Dollars a couple of weeks ago, I returned to the world of the man with no name to watch A Few Dollars More.

Taking the themes of the first film, A Few Dollars More expands in scope and ambition. No longer confined to a single town, the film traverses a broader landscape of the American West, painting on a wider canvas of moral ambiguity and uneasy alliances.

In this tale, two bounty hunters initially at odds must join forces to take down a shared enemy — the ruthless, psychopathic outlaw El Indio and his gang. Eastwood reprises his role, paired with Lee Van Cleef as an older, wiser rival bounty hunter.

The dynamic between Eastwood and Van Cleef's characters forms the heart of the film, a tenuous partnership born of necessity and mutual distrust. Both men are loners by nature, hardened by tragedy, driven by their own unspoken codes of justice.

Their quarry, El Indio, is played with manic intensity. Ruthless, sadistic, yet possessed of a certain warped charisma. It could be argued that Indio is the central figure of the movie. It is his scheme that forms the backbone of the plot: A heist targeting the seemingly impregnable Bank of El Paso. As Mortimer and Manco trail the outlaws, infiltrating their ranks, the game of cat-and-mouse escalates across an unforgiving terrain of canyons, deserts and dusty border towns.

Westerns rock.

That’s all for now,

From the present moment,

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