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Adam Darpino

Senior Video Producer and Programmer, Aeon+Psyche

Adam studied arts journalism and history at Syracuse University in New York. Before joining Aeon in 2014, he wrote comedy and cultural commentary for web outlets including Mental Floss, MTV News and College Humor, and spent a season working at the Sundance Film Festival. He enjoys whipping up vegetarian Indian recipes, debating NBA basketball, and seasons two through nine of The Simpsons. Adam is on Twitter @AdamDArpino

Edited by Adam Darpino



Recent Comments

A temporary marriage makes more sense than marriage for life

Adam Darpino

As with all aspects of intimate relationships, so long as this is a choice between two consenting, adult parties, why not? Any healthy romantic relationship is based on a foundation that allows couples to make their own rules and figure out what works best for them. Not mandatory, of course, but as an option? Hard to see the downside.

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Whatever you think, you don’t necessarily know your own mind

Adam Darpino

It seems likely that almost no one has as much agency as their neurochemistry tricks them into thinking they have. Indeed, those who most firmly believe that their conscious mind is “steering the ship” - to borrow a phrase - are probably the most diluted about the nature of their minds.

I do, however, think think that knowing your own brain is something you can improve at if you’re willing to imagine yourself as the ship’s passenger rather than the captain once in a while. Meditation, psychotherapy, certain drug experiences, and even just reading up on brain science can all be tools for this kind of introspection.

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Extinction is forever: de-extinction can’t save what we had

Adam Darpino

I’d definitely be interested in bringing back almost any prehistoric “giant” version of a modern animal, including but not limited to: the giant ground sloth, the giant beaver, and this giant bird. Could probably do without the READ MORE→ See comment

Playing games for real

Adam Darpino

Like drug use, it seems that gambling can be a bit of fun every once in a while for some folks, but for those with addictive personalities, it can be utterly life-ruining and quickly get beyond their control. I’m reminded of a story from This American Life (which you can listen to here) about a woman who sued a casino after she gambled away her inheritance. At first it seems like a total abdication of personal responsibility, but the more details you actually hear - especially how intentionally manipulating and predatory the casino was in this case - the mo...

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Save the soil to save the Earth: A Q & A with Ronald Amundson

Adam Darpino

“Abandon it for fresh new worlds” makes it sound so easy. The moon? Mars? Those are our only possible options for the foreseeable future, and even those are generations off, maybe longer. Unfortunately, the planet isn’t a party we can trash and leave when the booze runs out. Tough choices and a focus on what we can do to improve the situation here seems like our best option, now and pretty far off into the future.

I think it’s worth keeping in mind that humanity is still getting a handle on the idea that we can (and have) massively disturbed our habitat with unchecked economic growth. As we gain experience with that kind of power, I think we’ll get better at wielding it. Maybe that...

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American secular

Adam Darpino

“Failed” seems too strong a word, even if the Fox News crowd dedicates two months each year bemoaning the “War on Christmas.” Every poll shows the American public becoming less and less religious over the last few decades and the trend shows no sign of slowing, even if we’re lagging behind other modern republics.

At the moment, it’s interesting that all of the remaining contenders for president - Sanders, Clinton, Trump, and Gary Johnson, if you like - only seem to talk about religion in a token capacity. It’s not at the heart of their appeal in the way it was for Dubya, Reagan, or even Carter. Within the next few decades, an irreligious president doesn’t seem out of the realm of p...

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Right on track

Adam Darpino

I think at least part of the appeal is the joy of letting someone else take the reins. What’s not to love about enjoying a landscape without having to worry about traffic delays and staying vigilant of other drivers? Flight is great, but it wracks the nerves for a lot of folks, and long stretches are spent without much to look at - it hardly feels like your “passing through” anywhere. So much of what people love about travel seems to be the sense of discovery, and no other form of travel makes discovery quite so easy (and relaxing).

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The parlance of pilots

Adam Darpino

Convenience.

Not a particularly romantic word, but I don’t think I’ll every get over the idea that I can be almost anywhere in the world in less than a full day. This is a super recent development in human history, and I don’t take it for granted. Tight fit for my legs? Want me to take off my shoes? Have to sit on the runway for 45 minutes? Still, almost unfathomably convenient and pretty amazing if you put it in perspective. Louis CK has a great bit along the same lines: “You’re complaining about flying? You’re sitting on a chair in the sky! You’re like a Greek myth right now!”

Oh, and a layover beer is also nice. Few things rival a good layover beer.

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Midnight at the oasis

Adam Darpino

I’ve taken to meditation over the last several years, but for me, dusting off the guitar works just as well for clearing the mind. These days, the “dusting” part is quite literally, since I don’t get around to playing nearly as much as I’d like to, but anyone who’s played an instrument long enough knows the feeling - your brain completely tunes into the sounds while your hands and fingers do the heavy lifting. There’s almost no active thought involved - the world around you just kind of melts away. I hate to admit it, but certain video games work almost as well for getting me into that flow state as well.

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Suspended animation

Adam Darpino

As a kid, I, like most kids, was terrified of death. “But I’m so important. I’m the most important. How could I one day not be?” The idea of a heaven (or, y’know, hell) provided a bit of leeway while I was still coming to terms with the idea of returning to nothingness, but after a few years I had to face the facts: one day I will die, and that will be it. I will no longer be.

I’m 28 now, and I’m still pretty sure I will die one day. Ray Kurzweil says I have a fighting shot of one day becoming, for all intents and purposes, immortal, but I’d bet against it. And that’s just fine. At some point between childhood and now, it dawned on me that while dying ties my brai...

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Why pray?

Adam Darpino

Does begging an omnipotent being for a winning lotto ticket do much for you? Mmm… almost certainly not.

Does several minutes of quiet contemplation a day help clear the mind a bit? It works for me under the label “meditation” - and there’s a good deal of scientific data on its usefulness.

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