Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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What’s in the Middle?

I highlight every book I read. It’s partly out of habit and partly because I’ve got a shitty memory, but it’s not something I’m planning on stopping anytime soon. Anyhow, I’m in the middle of reading Snow Crash and couldn’t help but highlight the following passage, not because it’s overly interesting by itself, but because it brought me back to another book immediately:

Now that the concert is up and running, it will take care of itself. There’s not much more for Hiro to do. Besides, interesting things happen along border — transitions — not in the middle where everything is the same.

Like I said, not over fascinating, but when I went back and found this highlighted section in The Crying of Lot 49, things got a little more interesting:

She had heard all about excluded middles; they were bad shit, to be avoided; and how had it ever happened here, with the chances once so good for diversity? For it was now like walking among matrices of a great digital computer, the zeroes and ones twinned above, hanging like balanced mobiles right and left, ahead, thick, maybe endless. Behind the hieroglyphic streets there would either be a transcendent meaning, or only the earth.

I’m way too tired to get into connecting both of these at the moment. To be honest, this entry is just a poor excuse for me to write down two quotes I’d like to talk about later. So all is not lost, however, let me leave everyone with this word of wisdom:

Highlight your books, you won’t regret.

With that I am off to bed. Goodnight and watch out for middles.

August 8, 2005