Do you ever feel like finding something truly great on the internet is like finding a needle in a haystack? Photo by Aurélie Cenno

The year is 2021 and we are more than two decades into mass adoption of the world wide web. We have devised brilliant ways to surf the hundreds of billions of pages that compose the internet by keyword, category, and recentness. Have you ever wondered, though, why are we unable to browse by best?

No search engine or social media site has yet to truly solve the problem of prioritizing quality. Not Google, not Facebook, not Tumblr, not Pinterest, not any other site.

I think Reddit has come the closest. But its crowd-based voting system lifts quick and clever above…


Planet Soul

Sometimes you need to reach beyond ‘the facts’ to find peace

A photo of three birds flying in a blue sky with faint clouds.
A photo of three birds flying in a blue sky with faint clouds.
Photo: Erika Maurice

My friend is a true artist. A feeler with strong intuition, she lives in deep connection with the desert she calls home.

Her walks through the desert are her daily source of renewal. The smell of creosote in rare desert rains moves her more than anyone is moved by a smell. She feels an energy between all things that I could once only logically intuit.

I am often inspired by her connection to everything. Our time together has connected me to all these gifts, strengthening my connection with the natural world. …


I was climbing a mountain
a desert island in Phoenix.
It had just rained three days straight
and the unprecedented rain left
everything an unprecedented clear.
Everyone was rushing about below
from me all the way to the Superstitions.
Cars surging up and down the highway.
Seas of empty homes
cause everybody’s got to be somewhere else.
They’re all out chasing more
out and back
east and west
up and down
over and over
again and again.
The pattern seems clear from up here
except for how much more one needs.
Maybe a little more
maybe a lot of more
the degree remains uncertain.
But what is certain
is that nobody has enough.
In the wake of the parting storm
funky cloud patterns
make…


The other day, I figured out how to put the way I go about life into a single sentence. It then occurred to me that life was far too expansive. One couldn’t possibly do such a thing! However, it felt like an important sentence, so I thought to share it with you:

I strive to be cheap, sensitive, and naked to the world.

As language is subjective, those words probably mean something different to you than me. Let’s break it into parts and elaborate on each.

I strive to be cheap.

I strive to be cheap not for the sake of money, but for the…


I love podcasts — not quite as much as books — but they accompany daily tasks from driving, to cooking, to working out in the most engaging, fruitful of ways.

As but one human, I’ve only listened to a tiny fraction of all the podcasts ever recorded. However, I’ve scoured the web for quality conversation for half a decade now, and for perspective alone, consider each episode below well worth the time investment.

I could write about how valuable podcasts are for expanding awareness, allowing one to choose their influences, and how this list is just as much as a…


This afternoon, I’m getting paid to sit under an umbrella next to a pool, read books, and write these words in Flagstaff, Arizona.

It’s a spectacular summer day. Upper seventies. A slight breeze. Overplayed but otherwise decent music sounds from the speakers that surround. A couple of kids are shooting each other with squirt-guns in the pool while their moms chat at a table under an umbrella. A man that looks like a walrus is turning red with sun in a lounge chair. Thunderheads grow off on the western horizon, but the sky above is a pale blue canvas.

As…


A night in my 2003 Honda Element conversion.

For the past five years, I’ve been doing my damnedest to avoid paying rent. Given, I’m quite nomadic and largely avoid leases for the purpose of geographical freedom, but you might be surprised just how much time rent can cost you in a year.

I don’t particularly love articles full of numbers and perhaps you don’t either, but these are eye-opening numbers. Bear with me as we begin with a little math.

For the purposes of this article, let’s say your rent, utilities, and other housing expenses total $800 a month. This is a pretty frugal figure, as the average…

Ethan Maurice

Wonderer. Wanderer. Writer. ethanmaurice.com

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