On Being Awesome (Hardcover)
A Unified Theory of How Not to Suck
Penguin Books, 9780143130901, 224pp.
Publication Date: September 19, 2017
In this lively treatise, pro-skater-turned-philosopher Nick Riggle presents a theory of awesomeness (and its opposite, suckiness) that's both sharply illuminating and more timely than ever "Nick Riggle's fun book is 'awesome' by its own definition. But don't miss its profound ambition, which is to show how philosophy unearths the structure of ordinary language, defines the meaning of life in routine business, and poses the question of how best to live." --Aaron James, author of Assholes: A Theory We all know people who are awesome and people who suck, but what do we really mean by these terms? Have you ever been chill or game? Do you rock or rule? If so, then you're tapped into the ethics of awesomeness. Awesome people excel at creating social openings that encourage expressions of individuality and create community. And if you're a cheapskate, self-promoter, killjoy, or douchebag, you're the type of person who shuts social openings down. Put more simply: You suck. From street art to folk singers, Proust to the great etiquette writer Emily Post, President Obama to former Los Angeles Dodger Glenn Burke, Riggle draws on pop culture, politics, history, and sports to explore the origins of awesome, and delves into the nuances of what it means to suck and why it's so important to strive for awesomeness. An accessible and entertaining lens for navigating the ethics of our time, On Being Awesome provides a new and inspiring framework for understanding ourselves and creating meaningful connections in our everyday lives.
About the Author
Nick Riggle dropped out of high school to become a pro-skater, participating in stunt shows, demos, and world class competitions (including three ESPN X Games appearances). He has a BA in philosophy from UC Berkeley and a Ph.D. from NYU, America's leading philosophy program; he is currently a philosophy professor at the University of San Diego. He speaks widely at conferences and workshops and co-organized the first major academic conference on the philosophy of street art and graffiti. He continues to publish in key and notable philosophy journals, as well as more popular outlets including McSweeney's, Aeon (on the high five, awesomeness and suckiness), and Hyperallergic. His current academic work focuses on the role of aesthetic value in human life and is supported by a grant from The Experience Project, a 4.8 million dollar, three-year initiative at UNC Chapel Hill and the University of Notre Dame.