Skip to content
Swizec Teller - a geek with a hatswizec.com

The modern decadent

Recently I've read a book on decadence that was comprised primarily of examples on being decadent, how it's done, why it's done and so on ... it was called The Decadent Handbook I believe and anyone with any sort of decadent aspirations should give it a read, even though it is a bit difficult to wade through at certain points. The book itself has an interesting notion in the foreword and epilogue in that it claims everyone mentioned in it, indeed anyone writing about decadence, cannot be decadent themselves by definition.

The idea behind this notion seemed to be that the people writing in the book were not writing about their own experiences for the most part and that they were merely bookworms behind closed doors dreaming up lives of fun and adventure. Nothing wrong with this, but personally I prefer thinking that at least some of them were real and they weren't all quite as shammy as the cynic bastard surrounding it would have you think.

But it got me to wondering, just what is decadence then? Everyone in the book seemed to agree on one single point, surprisingly it wasn't the drugs, the debauchery or glutonous eating. No, the one and only common denominator between all descriptions was having fun with total disregard for common sense.

Right, so that immediatelly pops an image of a rockstar or something similar up in your head and there's nothing wrong with that, there really isn't. But I propose to you an image of a different decadent, one that doesn't flip his finger at society quite so obviously. What if true decadence is that guy who goes to work every morning and loves it? What if it's the workoholic who actually likes what they do and feels invigorated by their job? Granted that doesn't seem very fun to the rest of the world, but he wouldn't even care, just like he shouldn't. If he manages to sneak in a few drugs here and there, some heavy drinking when he's got the time and perhaps an odd kink or two that's an added plus.

So, in the end, what is decadence? Decadence is fun.

Did you enjoy this article?

Published on July 1st, 2008 in food for thought, review

Learned something new?
Want to become a high value JavaScript expert?

Here's how it works 👇

Leave your email and I'll send you an Interactive Modern JavaScript Cheatsheet 📖right away. After that you'll get thoughtfully written emails every week about React, JavaScript, and your career. Lessons learned over my 20 years in the industry working with companies ranging from tiny startups to Fortune5 behemoths.

Start with an interactive cheatsheet 📖

Then get thoughtful letters 💌 on mindsets, tactics, and technical skills for your career.

"Man, love your simple writing! Yours is the only email I open from marketers and only blog that I give a fuck to read & scroll till the end. And wow always take away lessons with me. Inspiring! And very relatable. 👌"

~ Ashish Kumar

Join over 10,000 engineers just like you already improving their JS careers with my letters, workshops, courses, and talks. ✌️

Have a burning question that you think I can answer? I don't have all of the answers, but I have some! Hit me up on twitter or book a 30min ama for in-depth help.

Ready to Stop copy pasting D3 examples and create data visualizations of your own?  Learn how to build scalable dataviz components your whole team can understand with React for Data Visualization

Curious about Serverless and the modern backend? Check out Serverless Handbook, modern backend for the frontend engineer.

Ready to learn how it all fits together and build a modern webapp from scratch? Learn how to launch a webapp and make your first 💰 on the side with ServerlessReact.Dev

Want to brush up on your modern JavaScript syntax? Check out my interactive cheatsheet: es6cheatsheet.com

By the way, just in case no one has told you it yet today: I love and appreciate you for who you are ❤️