I can think about many spatiotemporal individuals, including Barack Obama, the head of state of Namibia, Alpha Centauri, and Tutankhamun.  How am I able to do this?  I shall argue that, with a few exceptions, we can think about spatiotemporal individuals only “indirectly”, via their properties.  This kind of “descriptivist” view has been influential historically, and it has some contemporary proponents, but it is widely regarded to be false in contemporary philosophy.  I will defend the view against some influential objections deriving from Donnellan and Kripke.  I shall also present what I believe to be novel considerations in favour of the view, drawing on some largely neglected cases where we lack abilities to think about things.  Reflection on these cases suggests that (aside from the mentioned exceptions), there is no sufficient condition for being able to think about a spatiotemporal individual other than the “via properties condition” that I shall articulate.