Blue Angels, Seattle, WA

It’s hard to avoid going stale. A person, a business, a store, a band, a job, a friendship, a relationship. They can all go stale. They want to go stale. They naturally tend towards staleness if you don’t keep steering and pushing and lifting and refreshing.


stale - adjective
1: tasteless or unpalatable from age
stale bread
2: tedious from familiarity
a stale routine
3: impaired in legal force or effect by reason of being allowed to rest without timely use, action, or demand
a stale affidavit
a stale debt
4: impaired in vigor or effectiveness

Can you believe “stalely” is a word?

Staleness is one of those spiraling states that promote their own entrenchment. Once a thing starts going stale, it’s that less attractive to you, you’re less likely to touch it, eat it, deepen it, grow it, have fun with it. The less you do any of that, the more stale it goes. And so it goes.

Also known as being in a rut.

Fresh starts are so tempting. Drastic action feels so much easier doesn’t it? When you’re stale for so long you feel numb, and drastic action feels like something. Gradual repair is such a drag in comparison. Can you even tell anything is happening? It feels like nothing.

Fresh starts help you save face, kinda. I think they’re often about you saying to the world, to yourself, “hey, I’m aware of what has been happening. I take it seriously. Don’t you worry about whether I’m aware, I am. Here I’ll prove it to you.”

There’s no new redesign, no grand breaks with the past or promises about the future here. Frankly it’s just that I’ve thought of the expression “under new management” on an almost daily basis for weeks and I wanted to write something about it.

And since we’re here, I’ll tell you that I’m aware that ever since I put on my big boy pants and started my first full time job at $COMPANY in early 2017, my creative output has gone to shit. Writing, personal projects, photography, all those links on the chain are rusty as heck, sabbatical having come and gone. As you can see. But there are no new year’s resolutions or grand declarations here. Any action taken will be gradual, and in fact may not feel like much of anything.

One last something. Think of anything you’ve liked for a long time. Maybe it’s a shop that’s been a little bla, maybe what used to never miss the mark at the restaurant has been hit or miss lately. One day you show up and you see a sign: under new management. How do you feel? I’ll tell you how I felt when the exact same thing happened to my favorite restaurant in Seattle that had been slipping for a while: I did not feel good. I don’t think I’ve ever felt excited about new management.

You almost never want new management, you usually just want the old management to regroup and tighten shit up. I think if you’re excited about new management, you want a different thing altogether.