or how fishing parables are…limited

I get to do the easy part: giving people advice on how to be more creative.

“Just do it this way,” I’ll tell them. “Think of it like a metaphor. Look at it through this lens.”


“Give a person a fish, and they’ll eat for a day. Teach a person to fish, and they’ll eat for a lifetime.”

What’s missing from this pithy two-sentence parable is this:

🐟 Occasionally the fish are elusive, or worse, gone (someone got there before you). You spend all your time and energy out on the water but get nothing in return except frustration.

🐠 Sometimes you are too tired or depressed to fish. You’re not in the right headspace. Even the thought of lifting the rod is too much to bear. You just can’t bring yourself to get out there.

🐡 At other times, you are afraid to fish. You’ve completely lost your nerve. The water looks dangerous and foreboding. Wouldn’t it be safer to go hungry today than to tempt fate?

🍣 And every once in a while, you really get into it. You create elaborate plans and traps and nets. You game the system. You catch so many fish, you become overwhelmed. And most of them end up rotting on the deck…

Parables are neat and clean, but living is messy and human.

or how to read George R. R. Martin’s staggering, cumbersome epic without getting traumatized by the torture, rape, incest, and murder, thwarted by the medieval language, lost in his vast, invented world of strangely named cities and surrounding geography, muddled by the epic history and mythology, confused by the excessive cast of characters, or bored by the details of custom and culture.

CAUTION: There are some minor spoilers below, but they are worth it if I can get you to visit these books. Besides, you’ll forget about them as soon as you get into it.

Hipster Three-eyed Raven



I had an idea and now it is gone.

Fuck it.

If I spent every moment lamenting lost thoughts I’d be a professional mourner, a dream widower.

If you love something, let it go. Set it free. Let it die. Or whatever.

Honestly, I don’t run an idea zoo here. I can’t keep everything locked up in my head.

If it’s going to go it’s going to go. Good riddance. There’s a lot more where that came from.

Right? Right? [Nervous laughter]

Every morning there is a magical moment between when I hit snooze and when I fall back to…

All-Day Breakfast 210805 — Looking down from above (or How my iPad sees me) — #296


All-Day Breakfast 210804 — Portals of Trice— #295



This newsletter is originally sent out earlier for members of Createorbecreated.com.

Dear Createors!

This week I’ll spare you any Bo Burnham thoughts or discussions, except to say that That Funny Feeling is still playing on repeat in my head. But moving on!

I’m stumbling a bit to keep up with my ambitious publishing schedule. No Picobooks or articles were written this week, and even my mind/share project had a few no-shows. However, I did a lot of thinking about the Creative Compass and my six Creative Modes. It’s coming along, but not publishable yet. Please be patient!

🎧 Listening

A Mockingbird and the Importance of Wonder

I currently live…


All-Day Breakfast 210803 — “pollo de fuego” — #294


To me, they look positively prehistoric. When they are eating crickets or frogs, I imagine them as feathered dinosaurs. Noisy, messy, deadly.

Chickens have been around us for a dragon’s age. They are an incredible source of food, laying one egg a day, on average, for years. Humans are so used to living with chickens and observing their behaviour, that we have concocted many sayings related to these fowl birds:


A Hot List of English Phrases Related to Chickens

What came first, the chicken or the egg?

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket

Chicken shit!

Cooped up

Flew the coop

Come home to roost

Mother hen

Lay an egg

Egg on your face

Birds of a feather stick together

Pecking order

Come home to roost

Tarred and feathered


No harm, no fowl

Play chicken

Don’t be chicken

Winner winner chicken dinner!

Made from scratch

Don’t count your chickens before they hatch

Running around like a chicken with its head cut off

Why did the chicken cross the road? To get to the other side.

(This is much funnier when you have chickens)


Can you think of any more? Add in the comments…


All-Day Breakfast 210802 — “I’m not afraid (or how Disney is more powerful than the Galactic Empire)” — #293

What started as a simple photo of cotton candy clouds at dusk quickly devolved into a vague commentary on Disney’s treatment of the Star Wars franchise. It’s clunky and inelegant (allegory!)but there are some elements I really love that will carry over into improving future collage work:

  • Transparent PNGs of different kinds of light, fire, and smoke—these can be cheesy when overused (like my double lens flares) but add a cinematic quality to the scene.
  • Shading and highlighting objects—drawing and painting over top of the inserted collage pieces brings them into the picture more, like creating atmospheric haze over the…

All-Day Breakfast 210801 — “Battle Cat® Builds A Shed (or My Body Is a Cage)” — #292


All-Day Breakfast 210731 — “How to make Idea Coffee” — #291


Jason Theodor

is an Executive Design Leader, Speaker, Writer, Consultant who is trying to comprehend his surroundings. Find more at JasonTheodor.com

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