A trip down memory lane: revisiting my favorite articles

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In a rare (?) moment of narcissism, I realized the other day that I’ve written a lot of content since I started writing consistently. And I’m extremely proud of that.

That said, I realize that a lot of my readers have not followed me since the beginning of my writing journey. Because of that, I decided to dedicate an article to revisiting some of my favorite content that I’ve written over the years, both here and elsewhere. Enjoy!

A farewell letter to Gonzalo Higuaín

This was arguably my favorite article that I wrote on a football-related topic. As you know, I am also a writer at the Juventus Black & White & Read All Over blog at SB Nation (my writing name there is Chuks A.). When the Argentine striker Gonzalo Gerardo Higuaín left Juventus due to the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo, I felt very sad. Higuaín was one of those players that I really appreciated both as a player and a person.

Hence, when I discovered that he was leaving Juventus, I spontaneously wrote a heartfelt letter to him to express my gratitude for all that he had done for Juve because I felt that he was unappreciated and not shown the respect he deserved (I didn’t actually send it to him, of course).

I really liked this article because a) it was written so spontaneously and without agenda and b) it captured very nicely why I’m so emotionally attached to football: the human element of the game.

Your countryman César Luis Menotti once so beautifully said that “to be a footballer means being a privileged interpreter of the feelings and dreams of thousands of people.”

I always liked the way in which you interpreted my feelings and dreams on the pitch.

And I’ll miss you for that.
— From "A farewell letter to Gonzalo Higuaín"

Quite amusingly/strangely, at the time of writing Higuaín has returned to Juventus after unsuccessful loan spells at AC Milan and Chelsea FC. Life is a funny thing.

Link.

It's still a "man's world", but this seems to be slowly falling apart

Writing this article made me realize how surprisingly much I enjoy data collection and processing and then telling a story from data. Given the current social climate of female empowerment, the topic itself also fascinates me.

For this article, I studied patterns in educational achievement of women in the U.S. (that was the most comprehensive data I could find) and compared this to the same data for men. It was fascinating to see that more women than men attend post-secondary education — with the pattern projected to continue into the future — and that women obtain more post-secondary degrees than men.

I also discussed how these patterns, in addition to the problem of mass incarceration in America, contribute to the problem of a shortage of “marriagable men.” Yes, a shortage of marriagable men. Definitely a fun and thought-provoking topic to write about!

Link.

A Nobody: An honest take on my experience in high school

A very personal article about my experience of two years of high school in the U.S. after I left the Netherlands when I was 16. Although I’ve moved on from the negative experience, writing this still brought back some rough memories. Looking back at this article now, I realize that I probably could have toned it down a little but, in my defense, it was important that I captured the full intensity/emotion of that period of my life.

An empty vessel whose heart has been stolen away; a spirit that goes on even as its body fades from existence.

For you see, Nobodies do not truly exist at all.
— Master Yen Sid; Kingdom Hearts 2

Link.

Do we really need economic growth?

Yes, I know, the title is a bit clickbaity. Nevertheless, it’s a topic that, given my academic background, is very near and dear to my heart. It drives me insane that politicians and policy leaders are obsessed with economic growth and that this comes at the cost of ignoring welfare, (mental) health, and overall happiness. There’s also the obsession with GDP (Gross Domestic Product) which, funny enough, was never meant to be a measure of a nation’s social or economic well-being.

Besides, isn’t the purpose of government to maximize the welfare of its citizens, not economic growth?

Link.

Only the “backward countries of the world” truly need more economic growth, [John Stuart] Mill thought. The advanced countries only need a better distribution or at least a better ethos.

He decried the United States, where he thought poverty was eliminated but “the life of one sex is devoted to dollar hunting, and of the other to breeding dollar hunters.
— From page 112 of the book “New Ideas From Dead Economists: An Introduction To Modern Economic Thought” by Todd G. Buchholz

Answering one reader's many questions

In this very fun and personal 3-part Q&A series, I answer a wide range of questions about myself. Questions about dating, relationships, my secrets, happiness, my deepest fears, life ambitions, and so much more. I forgot how much fun it is to talk about yourself.

If you want to know and understand me on a more personal level, make sure to check this one out!

Link.

On the ongoing problem of racism in football

Racism. An extremely sensitive topic that, unfortunately, is in the news far too often for all the wrong reasons. This article was another example of how strongly football has impacted me on a personal level as I discuss my views on the problem of racism in the sport.

Link.

Monthly Juventus Thoughts

Since February 2016, I’ve had the honor of writing a monthly column for the Black & White & Read All Over website. I want to pick out three editions of my column that show how (unhealthily?) seriously I take football and how much it emotionally impacts me.

It’s funny how a game in which 22 people kick a ball around for 90 minutes can so profoundly affect me emotionally.

Quora

Quora is my (social media?) platform of choice. I never particularly liked Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, though Twitter seems alright. This is why the only accounts I have are Quora, Facebook (which I use very infrequently), and LinkedIn. Quora is by far my favorite.

In these two articles, I shared my favorite/best Quora answers that I’ve written to date. This includes answers to questions like “What are some things that make you sad?", “As a Christian, have you ever actually read the entire Bible?”, “Why do millennials not want kids?”, and much more!

Links here and here.

Thanks for reading!

See you, Space Cowboy.