Jazz: Chapter 1

Bartenders were pouring drinks into glasses, releasing a strong miasma of liquor into the air. Behind them, a mirror covered the wall. Coming from the booths, chatter and laughter danced along brick walls.

I looked around for Jay. He was nowhere in sight, so I took a seat at the bar.

“He’s in the other room, talking with Oliver,” one of the bartenders said. “What’ll be?”

“The same as my cousin.”

He put a bottle of Corona on the bar. I took a long sip.

A few moments later Jay came out through a double door. His tie was undone and his white shirt, all plastered around his body, had its sleeves rolled up to the elbows. His face was swollen, and a rugged beard went all the way up from his Adam’s apple to his cheekbones, close to his eyes. It was as if he were trying to choke himself to death with his own facial hair. We shook hands.

Continue reading “Jazz: Chapter 1”

New: Practical Philosophy

What can a six-time Olympic champion wrestler that lived over two millennia ago can teach us about progress? What can the richest Stoic philosopher teach us about time management? What can Alexander the Great’s meeting with a philosopher teach us about conquering the world? What can a photograph snapped millions of miles away from Earth teach us about the fragility of our own existence?

Bestselling author Cristian Mihai journeys broadly, discussing habit building, success, time-management, and responsibility, distilling philosophical concepts into 18 practical frameworks for living a good life. 

Practical Philosophy shatters the myth that philosophy is nothing more than a favorite pastime of intellectuals, void of any practicality while transforming the mindset of its readers.


Hey guys,

I decided to compile 18 of my favorite essays into a book that provides clear, actionable philosophical advice.

If you’ve enjoyed the kind of articles I used to publish on this blog, then this book is surely your cup of tea… if you’ve found that the concepts I discuss challenge your perception of reality, then this book is surely your shot of whisky.

If you’re interested, you can grab your e-copy from my e-store here.

Instead of Killing Myself, I Wrote a Story

The very surreal feeling of wanting to end your life, especially in the loud chaos of a bustling city — a city with people and lights and billboards and cars chasing one another all day and night, headed for nowhere in particular.

The burning sensation that crawls up and down your skin as you contemplate not having to hold the world on your shoulders anymore.

The chaos, the commotion, all these perfect strangers. Motion, commotion. Emotion.

I wanted to kill myself, but instead, I sat down to write:

I keep a small revolver tucked under my pillow. Every morning, I wake up and grab the little device and turn it on all sides. I inspect it as if its power of destruction could be easily comprehended.

Sometimes I press the barrel to my right temple. My index finger curled around the trigger, I close my eyes and count to ten. Of course, the gun’s never loaded.

Nevertheless, it makes you think.

You see, this is the only power we have. True freedom, as I like to say, comes from the realization that you can kill yourself any time you want.

Sunlight slipping through the heavy curtains, casting red dots on the walls, I can feel my blood boiling inside my body. My heart beats like a fist inside my chest; the metallic coolness of the gun infects my skin.

Loaded or not, it doesn’t matter.

I’m ready to pull the trigger. I want to see God and ask Him a million questions. I press the gun to my chest and take a deep breath. “This is not my life.”

We all die and there’s nothing terrifying or great about it.

“This isn’t a life worth living.”

The gun pressed hard against my chest, right where the heart should be, I pull the trigger. That’s when I can open my eyes. That’s when I can smile. When I can feel alive just because I could’ve and yet I didn’t.

Every morning I wake up and die.

“True freedom, as I like to say, comes from the realization that you can kill yourself any time you want.”

My character’s name was Paul. A painter. An artist. The burden of his own creative genius, the pain of ideas and dreams and hopes turning to rust and stardust.

That’s why I called this story, Dream City. We often forget that nightmares are dreams too.

Continue reading “Instead of Killing Myself, I Wrote a Story”

The Extremely Shocking Story of How I Self-Published a Novel And Sold Two Copies in Four Months

It was November 2010. Maybe it was a dark and stormy night, I don’t recall. But I was going through a dark night of the soul, that’s for sure.

You know, a proper dark night of the soul, when you feel your chest being crushed under the weight of so many dying dreams that nothing can offer even a bit of comfort.

When the usual hack of, “Well, others have lost empires,” doesn’t help at all.

That’s when I found out about NaNoWriMo. I found out that I could self-publish stories. On Amazon. And sell those stories to people for money, which I could then use to purchase various goods that are needed for one’s survival.

I thought it to be the best thing ever, and so I dropped out of college and started punching those damn keys.

There were a couple of things that I hadn’t thought through though:

  1. I had never written a novel.
  2. I had never written a novel in English.
  3. I had no idea what it took to actually self-publish a book.
  4. I had no one to sell the damn thing to.

But, as I’m so fond of saying, we sometimes need a lot of courage to do something. Other times, we just need to be so dumb that we have no idea what we’re getting ourselves into.

And I was never brave…

Continue reading “The Extremely Shocking Story of How I Self-Published a Novel And Sold Two Copies in Four Months”

Who the F$#k Is Cristian Mihai?

The author of this article, age 8

When I was a kid, I thought I was destined for great things. I was born on Christmas Day, exactly one year after they shot Ceausescu, the only ruler of a Communist country to ever be executed. Now, in the same spot, they’re building a shopping mall.

Maybe because I was born when I was born, I don’t really listen to what other people tell me I should do. I never did.

I don’t like authority. I don’t like to follow rules.

I am not afraid of the consequences of not doing what I am told. I am not where I’d like to be in life because I don’t like most people. I have long suspected they don’t like me back.

I am a rebel without a cause, garnering a bit of applause here and there from those who read my stories.

Continue reading “Who the F$#k Is Cristian Mihai?”