HENRY DAVID Thoreau wrote that ‘most men lead lives of quiet desperation’. I am at war with ‘quiet desperation’. What does quiet desperation look like? It looks like someone shutting up for the sake of peace. It looks like someone not doing what he wants in order to meet expectations, or fit in, or maintain the status quo. It looks like someone falling in line.

What’s the opposite of ‘quiet desperation’? It’s a man who starts each day knowing that he’s surfing the wave of being, that he could not be more, or express more of himself than he is. It’s a man to whom life is an adventure, a sea to sail across, a river to ford, a lion to tame, a woman to woo. It’s a man whose heart beats too fast more than once a day, not from fear and worry, but from lust and liveliness.

How do you live your life? Do you live merely to survive, or do you live to ‘suck the marrow out of life’, as Thoreau did? He went and lived in the woods for a few years, as his way of expressing this. For others it might be something completely different. What would it mean for you?