You’ve been told that doing things alone is synonymous with loneliness and depression, a symptom of a miserable life. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Doing things alone is not sad — it is liberation.

Photo by Lee Scot from Unsplash.com

You’ve seen it in movies and YouTube video essays, read it in blogs, newspapers and magazines, heard it in podcasts and on the radio. The story of lonely characters, wandering the city alone with a drab colour palette and a sombre soundtrack. They go to the movies alone, to the restaurant, maybe even to a crowded party, while being utterly miserable. And you feel…


I would like to play
The part of the poet,
The artist,
The bon vivant.

I would sit in a darkened corner,
Drink in one hand
And a cigar on the other,
A pretentious trench coat mannequin
Merging into the scenery
Of intellectual debauchery.

Smooth jazz
Cigarette smoke
And Marxist literature
Would fill the room and souls
Tying everyone together
In the atmosphere of discontent.

Yet,
I am seldom discontent.
Neither am I a smoker
Much less a Marxist.

I wish I were an artist,
A bohemian of sorts,
That saw life as the tapestry
And dramatic tragedy
Everyone claims it to be…


I’ve found that all the things you need can be found inside a city.

I’m not talking about things you really need like food and shelter, healthcare insurance and mortgages with reasonable interest rates. No poet wants to talk about that. There’s a whole downtown library full of things we’d rather talk about other than real life. It even has a nice little cafe full of antique objects that don’t work, and it serves fifty different kinds of coffee. It doesn’t even have an espresso machine.

That’s the modern cityscape for you. The old ways have been vanquished, replaced by…


Beneath Tarantino’s much criticized depictions of violence, which are mostly a consequence of a lack of understanding, lies a deeper motivation, a recurring theme and personal signature that sheds light into the work of one of the most celebrated filmmakers of our time.

Django concludes his personal revenge and offers justice to those who suffered under slavery.

Violence, death and suffering are unavoidable occurrences throughout people’s lives, entire societies and social groups, so it is only natural that some might say we have enough chaos in real life as is, there’s no need to taint entertainment with it, risk glorifying it and, who knows, even incentivizing it. Although an understandable view, it can be…


The strangest dreams

Invade my mind,

Dreams of things I never had

And places I’ve never seen.

I’ve never set foot on New York City

Yet in my mind’s eye

It is all I see.

Flashes of a vibrant cityscape,

Sounds and sights of lights and people,

Sensations of things I’d feel

If I walked the sidewalks and the streets.

I imagine myself a character

Of a thousand stories

Set in that sprawling city,

Living a thousand lives worth living

And making memories worth keeping.

I dream of New York City

Because the dream is all I have.

Without it all that’s left

Is a lonesome man

Walking through fields of faded grass,

Each blade a reminder

Of the things he can never have.


Game of Thrones was once praised for its deep and meaningful dialogue, heralded as a beacon of character depth and development, and regarded as the rare fusion between spectacle and brilliant writing. Now, in its 8th season, it has none of these things. Yet, it is bigger than ever. How, and when exactly did Game of Thrones lose its way?

Tywin’s death marks the fall of the show’s brilliance.

1. Weightless Dialogue

Conversations between characters were pivotal to the show’s integrity, personality and to the narrative’s progression. Rare indeed are shows and films that immerse you absolutely in the simple act of characters talking to each other, every word…


These are the words embedded into the title section of Medium’s editing tool, words that have allowed countless writers and thinkers to share their ideias with the entire world. But, how often are these stories we here share truly our stories, and how often are our stories worth telling?

Consider this: how many people that you know closely are worth writing a book about? Are you worth writing a book about? A good one, I mean. Not many, I imagine. I have encountered this myself, particularly when looking at my own life and seeing that is mostly composed of a…


Paul Thomas Anderson’s ability to delve into the psyche of his multidimensional fictional characters is perhaps best showcased in his films “There Will Be Blood” and “Phantom Thread”. Yet, for all their similarities in characterization and understanding of the human mind, their approaches could not be further apart.

Daniel Plainview is an oil man and the protagonist of 2007’s “There Will Be Blood”. Reynolds Woodcock is a dress-maker and the protagonist of 2017’s “Phantom Thread”. Ten years apart, these films tackle the search for meaning and happiness through their main character’s professional journey, beyond all other themes which serve as…


We are living mortgaged lives, as if from the moment we were born we accrued a perpetual debt to others that we must spend our lives paying. An elaborate and articulate few call it a contract, an assumption to exist by the rules and institutions that constitute an inevitable form of society. Others, the ones that effectively perpetuate this idea, through commonly held beliefs, cherry-picked value systems and ingrained preconceptions passed down through the road of multiple ideologies, assert that, for example, we owe love to one another, solidarity and mutual, irrevocable aid to each other.

These are all false…


Answering this question leads us beyond becoming better writers; it unveils a clear pathway into our own happiness. As corny as that may sound, it is not unreasonable to conclude that happiness is what we all strive for, or at least the fulfillment of our individual wants and needs. For those of us who write, it is paramount to understand that the act is inseparable from our personal satisfaction, and if we do it without realizing our own motivations we will never not feel incomplete.

But this is not a sentimental article, so we can do without the soul-searching and…

João Gil

Part-time poet, full-time dreamer. I write in search of meaning, whatever that means.

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