“The first rule of improvisation is AGREE. Always agree and SAY YES… As an improviser, I always find it jarring when I meet someone in real life whose first answer is no. ‘No, we can’t do that.’ ‘No, that’s not in the budget.’ ‘No, I will not hold your hand for a dollar.’ What kind of a way is that to live?”—Tiny Fey, Bossypants
“Novelty-seeking is one of the traits that keeps you healthy and happy and fosters personality growth as you age,” says C. Robert Cloninger, the psychiatrist who developed personality tests for measuring this trait.
The adventurous neophiliacs are more likely to possess a “migration gene,” a DNA mutation that occurred about 50,000 years ago, as humans were dispersing from Africa around the world, according to Robert Moyzis, a biochemist at the University of California, Irvine. The mutations are more prevalent in the most far-flung populations, like Indian tribes in South America descended from the neophiliacs who crossed the Bering Strait.
These genetic variations affect the brain’s regulation of dopamine, the neurotransmitter associated with the processing of rewards and new stimuli (and drugs like cocaine). The variations have been linked to faster reaction times, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and a higher penchant for novelty-seeking and risk-taking.
“A ritual is the enactment of a myth. And, by participating in the ritual, you are participating in the myth. And since myth is a projection of the depth wisdom of the psyche, by participating in a ritual, participating in the myth, you are being, as it were, put in accord with that wisdom, which is the wisdom that is inherent within you anyhow. Your consciousness is being re-minded of the wisdom of your own life.
I think ritual is terribly important.”—
Joseph Campbell, “The Wisdom of Joseph Campbell,” New Dimensions Radio Interview with Michael Toms, Tape I, Side 2
Architecture student André Ford has proposed a new system for the mass production of chicken that removes the birds’ cerebral cortex so that they don’t experience the horrors of being packed together tightly in vertical farms.
“Only hang around people that are positive and make you feel good. Anybody who doesn’t make you feel good kick them to the curb and the earlier you start in your life the better. The minute anybody makes you feel weird and non included or not supported, you know, either beat it or tell them to beat it.”—