When offered deep philosophical wisdom from ancient holy books or some straight up no bullshit wisdom from real life folks just making life happen, I choose the second every time.

I have some basic rules I follow—like, the more they swear, generally the more truthful I think they are. The farther they’ve traveled, the more I believe their points of view. The more bullshit they cut through, the more certain I am they have something worthy of listening to. And if they can mix their street-smart wisdom into everyday stuff without being too direct about it, I’m sold.

“If you’re twenty-two, physically fit, hungry to learn and be better, I urge you to travel – as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them – wherever you go.”

“We know, for instance, that there is a direct, inverse relationship between frequency of family meals and social problems. Bluntly stated, members of families who eat together regularly are statistically less likely to stick up liquor stores, blow up meth labs, give birth to crack babies, commit suicide, or make donkey porn. If Little Timmy had just had more meatloaf, he might not have grown up to fill chest freezers with Cub Scout parts.”

“You learn a lot about someone when you share a meal together.”

“Don’t lie about it. You made a mistake. Admit it and move on. Just don’t do it again. Ever.”

“The journey is part of the experience – an expression of the seriousness of one’s intent. One doesn’t take the A train to Mecca.”   ~ Anthony Bourdain.

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