October 17, 2016

Mo’ Meta Blues


Who do you surround yourself with? What great things are those people doing, and how does that inspire you to strive for greatness?

The enduring vision that lingers after reading Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast is that of great artists, spending their lives together in salons and cafes, inspiring each other to create masterpieces. Hemingway spent his days with Fitzgerald, Stein, Picasso, Pound, and Matisse; some of the greatest works of art came from this collision of genius in Stein’s salon in the 6th arrondissement of Paris.

It is heartening to see so many of my friends and acquaintances doing such amazing things, now. I often wonder, as I work my way through the day, which one of the people I know will be the next to change the world—in both small and large ways—and leave an indelible mark on life as we know it.

This importance of assembly was what struck me most in Mo’ Meta Blues. Questlove is not just himself a musical genius—I’ve had the chance to see him DJ three times and have seen The Roots perform live twice, so I can speak to his prodigiousness—but also has an incredible talent for surrounding himself with the best of the best. Some of this is serendipity, and some of it is conscious choice, but in the end, it leads to the same result: brilliance breeds brilliance, and we are shaped and made by the people who surround us.

So today, and every day, I ask myself: who do I surround myself with? How do they inspire me to be the best version of myself I can be?

Right now, I am so thankful for everyone in my life, for they are the inspiration I crave and need.

→ Marginalia