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The Short Story: The This vs That Edition
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The Short Story by Ava Love Hanna
Welcome to the third issue of The Short Story! 
Every week I’ll be sending out a collection of things to read, watch, or think about relating to a central theme. Like a good short story, I’m aiming for thoughtful brevity, with just enough material to give us something to ponder or make us laugh before we jump back into our day. Thanks for joining me!
The THIS vs THAT Edition
This week I’m thinking about choices. It feels like we’re being asked to make so many big ones lately – big choices that scream divisiveness and separate us into us vs them. It’s got me thinking about the act of choosing. I’m fascinated by the moments before the decision -- that single point in time where we exist outside of the eventual consequences – when we get to play with the future, roll it around in our minds, before we flip the coin, exhale, and say I choose… 
Eddie Izzard -  Cake or Death?
"Cake or death, that's a pretty easy question. Anyone can answer that." I'm a huge fan of the comedian, Eddie Izzard. In this clip from his stand up show, Dressed to Kill, he shows that some choices are simple.
Is the paradox of choice a myth?
The paradox of choice posits that when given too many options, people have a harder time making choices. However, some researchers are arguing that consumers who are given a large number of choices experience less anxiety when they make their final decision. I can't decide who to believe. Watch the TED talk about the paradox of choice here or read the article refuting it here. And, in case you like having too many options, here's a playlist of TED talks about how we make choices.
The Clash - Should I Stay or Should I Go?
No discussion on making choices can be complete without listening to The Clash's, Should I Stay or Should I Go?
Choose Your Own Adventure
Choose Your Own Adventure books were a huge part of my childhood. Ryan North has written two detailed "choose your own path" style books for adults. His version of Hamlet, To Be or Not To Be is amazing and he recently released, Romeo and/or Juliet. (I helped with early edits on To Be or Not To Be --  it's hilarious.)
Getting Unstuck
If all this thinking about choices has you stuck, I stumbled upon a neat app a couple of years ago that helps you get "unstuck" and look at things with a new perspective. It's free and fun to play with.
My birthday is in a month and so this is the time of year that I spend some time thinking about my choices and my life thus far. What have I done well? What do I still want to do? What do I ultimately want to do before I die? I wrote an essay about visiting the Before I Die art wall here in Austin and the things I've been pondering since.
Art in Austin: Before I Die
Thanks for joining me this week! If you like The Short Story and want to support it, feel free to forward it to a friend or come visit me at avalovehanna.com.
Ava Love Hanna - Writer & Storyteller
Have something you've written, made, or read and would love to see it featured in a future edition of The Short Story? Email submissions to: theshortstory@avalovehanna.com
Copyright © 2016 Ava Love Hanna, All rights reserved.


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