116: What I read in May 2022 — “The Nineties”, “Fat, Crazy, and Tired”, “Plays Well With Others” , “Building a Second Brain”

Raw Transcript

This is auto-transcribed so I need to still go through and clean it up but hopefully this is helpful as-is

Turn the microphone on going to record got inspired by dream on green, who is able to just apparently just turn the microphone on. After games record the podcast, give his reaction.

I now know he has a producer, but I did like to think that it was him. Cutting it saving this thing as an MP3. Exporting it. And then uploading it to Libsyn. Typing the description. Hitting publish.

And I am not an NBA player. So just hearing my thoughts is just my random thoughts is probably not interesting. I’m going to need to anchor it.

To something. So I’m going to talk books that I’ve read recently. The title of this is what I read in May, 2022. And I’ll just try to share. A book. From everything. Each of these different books. So I have the quotes here from. Five. Let’s call it four bucks right now. Ah, let’s call it five. And I’ll just do one quote from each of these books. The first one is.

The Nineties

The nineties. By Chuck Klosterman. This is a great book. If you have any memories growing up in the nineties. Then you’ll enjoy this. I think the thing that it. Made me. I not changed my mind about, I guess I changed my mind. That can be a nice way to look at a book. What did it change your mind about? And this made me realize that I didn’t understand what was going on in the world around me. I guess. I probably, I knew that like,

I was a kid growing up in the nineties. I knew that I, like, I know that I didn’t understand it fully. So this helped me. Two. I understand, I guess like the context of the world. At the time and understand probably like in some ways what my parents. We’re what they were learning from the news. But what, how they were perceiving it, maybe.

Though, I’m guessing. My. Immigrant parents had a different view. Of pop culture than say Chuck Klosterman. Um, But yeah, it was a good.

Read, just hearing about like different, important things in pop culture. Um, Nirvana. Mike Tyson. Tupac. Seinfeld friends. The matrix. And to understand how not necessarily that these things all fit together, but they were all a part of the nineties.

And then yeah. Part of it with the internet shaping things, though, that probably had an even bigger effect on w with each like subsequent decade. Um, But it was, yeah. Again, like interesting to like, Read about. The nineties. And then just remember like how I learned about these things. Cause not too many of these things were.

Brand new to me. I knew these things happen. I knew like Kurt Cobain committed suicide. I knew Mike Tyson. Last to Buster Douglas and Tupac died. I don’t know that I knew that these knew about these things happening in real time. It’s Tupac dying is the one that I do remember because my brother was kind of following it, um, in the newspaper. So we would find out probably like a day later.

Um, maybe it was on the news as well, but. I remember my brother being very, very sad. Well, you know, you. You’d read in the paper. Oh, he got shot. And then eventually you would, you know, A week later. Um, He dies. He passes away. And my brother was, was just devastated. So, um, Reading about. That and.

Chuck Klosterman points out. It’s not like a secret or anything. Like Tupac went to a prominent high school in Baltimore for acting and he. Danced in the Nutcracker. And I think. It was interesting to see like this. It’s not like method acting, but in a way, He began to.

Evolve into.

Uh, gangster rapper, and that’s not who he was in high school, and then began to truly live that life until it ended up in, um, Him ed. Notorious big, both getting shot in a weird east coast, west coast battle. It was weird in that. Uh, information doesn’t didn’t travel that quickly back then. So. Um,

That kind of makes more sense with the internet now and with mobile devices and FaceTime and it’s going like live on Instagram and streaming and those kinds of things you can actually have. Regular communication with someone you hate. On a different coast where it wasn’t quite as easy back then.

And that is kind of a theme through the book that the internet does make things more where. Or it did make things more prominent. And yeah, just. Um, he just writes about how. That changed pop culture as well. So getting to a quote, he says, let’s see, there’s always a disconnect between the world. We seem to remember. And the world that actually was what’s complicated about the 1990s is the central illusion.

Is that the central illusion is memory itself. This is just that idea that like, I mean, As I’ve gotten older, I realized all my memories are just pretty terrible, not terrible as in like bad that they’re bad memories, but, uh, inaccurate. I was. Yeah, this, this is not like a nineties memory. This is just my cousin Allen visited me last week.

And we went to this Warrior’s watch party, which is great 25 bucks. And then you don’t need to like drink too much to feel like. You were at the game in some way. Bye. I don’t think this is a hot take. I think this is just a okay. Take that. Um,

If you’re going to get nosebleed seats. I think a watch party is just as good as nosebleed seats at an actual game, because at an actual game, you do end up kind of watching a bunch on the screen. And if you’re going to be doing that, just price-wise as well, $25 versus nosebleeds, where, you know, you could pay one 50 to three, like two 50 and above for nosebleeds.

And you’re going to end up. Um, Yeah, watching the screen anyway, better to watch the screen with, um, the commentary going on. So it’s like you’re at home. With, um, Yeah, like the actual broadcast.

It was great. Um, the energy was there from the fans. All that. And I’m definitely getting away from like, talking about this nineties books. Um, Oh, yeah. Memory itself. So, yeah. W we watched that game. And then I was telling him later, I was like, oh man. Remember when we watched, um, game seven of the Cavaliers comeback when they came back from three.

From being down a one to three. And we watched game seven. It was great. Kyrie hit that shot. And then Alan said, no, we didn’t watch that together. We were at, he said I, I watched that with my dad at Bob’s burgers. And I said like, no way. This is a pretty distinct memory for me that.

We watched it. Together. And then I of course did the thing where I start to secretly look. On my phone to prove him wrong. And then find out that I was wrong. And I found like the date for game seven, went back. He Alan was like, oh yeah, I remember distinctly because it was father’s day. So went into Google photos, pulls the date.

And then sure enough, there it is. It’s um game seven. I took a few photos of the TV. Of game seven and I am. Watching it alone in my studio, in New York. Um, instead of like this fun memory where I’m watching with my dad and cousins in Washington, it’s this sad one where I’m watching alone. Um,

And I don’t. Yeah, that’s just how, w w it, it did turn out. We did watch, like, I think it was like game five or six together. So that’s what I mix it up with. But. Um, in the nineties, Chuck closer, men just talks about how. Certainly. He’s trying to write a, a bit of like a history of like what actually happened. He’s not putting everything through this lens of.

Oh, Now that we’ve seen how things turned out. This is how the nineties. Shaped the world. And that’s our thing. He’s more just like trying to lay out. This is actually what happened in the nineties. And one of the things he talks about is just, um, the. OJ Simpson trial and how. It’s incorrect, how people kind of have this hindsight.

Or like what people, how people. Say it went down versus like what actually happened. Based on. Like articles. And I guess, like, I don’t know if polls is the right word, but like the public perception that was recorded in newspapers that. Um, a lot of people now think like, oh, it was it it’s.

He was guilty, but everyone knew he was gonna, um, be found, not guilty. And it wasn’t like that at all. It was. A lot of people thought. Um,

Yeah, that he was. Going to go to jail and these things weren’t obvious. And we can collectively as like a society culture. Um, look back at these things and think these things were obvious. Um,

But, yeah, it’s just. Not the case. And then. Let’s see. I think, I think that’s enough on that though. He does have this fun. Phrase or like thing in the book about just like levels of crazy as far as not, not quite like people, but just, um, events that happened where. With Mike Tyson, when he bit off Vander Holyfield’s ear in the middle.

Of the boxing ring. That event like. That happening was so crazy that. You’re able to say that to another person completely clearly. And they’re still going to ask you to repeat yourself because that’s just, just reading that. It just sounds nuts. Okay. So. That’s it for Chuck closer, man, the nineties, a book. I really did enjoy reading this, I guess like one other thing I grew up.

Um, Wait in Japan for elementary school and then moved to Washington state. And about like couple of hours from Seattle. I did not understand this. This is one of those things. Like, I didn’t quite understand how big Nirvana was and how big. Grunge music really was and how influential it was. And just that it kind of was everything like, um, music wise for young people at the time.


Um, But anyway. Next book is let’s see. Here we go. Van Lathan.

It’s a book called fat crazy and tired. So van Lathan is I know him through. Not, not, I know like who he is. Like not, I don’t know him personally. Um, but. I listened to him, uh, when he appears on like bill Simmons podcast or the rewatch labels. Where my favorite line from him is from the Terminator teary washables.

Where he just says like, oh yes, he is. You know, like you want like a souvenir from Terminator to well, my dad bought the actual shot gun itself. That is in that movie where like, not, not the actual movie prop, but the same model of shotgun, the like spin action rifle or spin action, like shotgun.

Um, But anyway, I’ll just like jump to a quote here. So he says I had a basketball coach who used to have a great saying there’s no such thing as a 15 point shot. If you’re down 15, you’re not going to get it back right away. For me, I had to walk to the scale every day, knowing it wasn’t going to show me my goal weight. I had to do that for a year.

The only way that you can do that is if your mind is different, sometimes progress has to be the reward. And it’s very hard to see when you’re first starting out.

And what this reminded me of is NBA jam tournament edition, where there are four point shots, five point shots up to a nine point shot. With the hot spots. And also. Rock and jock MTV, rock and jock. Did have, I think it was a 25 point shot. On a 25 foot hoop, but that’s not how life is. It is more like what van Lathan talks about is.

This is the whole thing of like, find a way to enjoy the journey. Or find those like small things to celebrate along the way, even if you do have, um, the goal weight. And yeah, this is kind of like changing the mindset. With say, like working out to. Focus on it. It’s the input goal versus the output goal? Um, lagging measures and lead measures, or I guess reverse. So like lead measures, lag measures, um,

Doing the workout, completing the workout. That’s enough to celebrate. You. Don’t have to. Wait, withholding your celebration. Withhold. All of that until you hit your goal weight. That’s that don’t celebrate with food.

If you do, you’ll never hit your goal. One thing with this book is he does describe some of his mom’s cooking and just like the upbringing. And how food was very important. And it was kind of like how his mom showed love to the family. And it’s just, he just has Mac and cheese and talks about all this good food. It made me very hungry. And I remember when I read this, we were on a flight. I think it was our trip to.

New York. We were coming back from New York on the way to, we had a layover in San Diego. And in the San Diego airport, there’s a Phil’s barbecue. And sure enough. I overate. Right after reading this book. Um, I think I actually did complete it, or it was. Near the end. I just remember thinking like, oh man, this kind of did the opposite of maybe what the book intended.

I did enjoy the book and. It gave me insight into who van Lathan is. I didn’t really know very much about his background. And then yeah, he just talks about this lifelong pursuit of a better health, both mentally and physically.

Plays well with Others

The next book is plays well with others. So this is a book by Eric Barker. He’s the author of barking up the wrong tree, which is kind of a special book for this podcast because. Wally. And I. Did I think like three episodes on PLA uh, barking up the wrong tree. And it was. Around the time that we started this podcast, it was so that’s 2017.


It has been five years that we were doing this and that kind of blows my mind a little bit and is also one of these things where it’s a little disappointing. In that we. Haven’t kept it going consistently. But when I look back, that was one of the most fun periods, as far as like doing the creator stuff.

On the side as a hobby.

And it was a reminder that. Building things with other people can be. One of the best ways to keep the friendship going. I think. One thing that was great about doing the podcast was. Just that it was this weekly thing to catch up, have a conversation for an hour. No one was listening. A few people realized that, Hey, thank you. I think you’re still the few people listening.

Um, and Wally and I. I have always talked about like, oh, we’re going to do this again. We’re going to start recording again and we just haven’t done it, but I am still hopeful that we will, and we’ll find a time to schedule it.

In the meantime. You’re going to get highlights from books with me alone. Okay, so plays well with others. Again, it’s about relationships. He talks about romantic relationships and then, um, your friends. Enemies. And then also like finding a community and how important that can be as well. Um,

But I really enjoyed this book. I have like it’s like hundreds of highlights here. Definitely recommend it. Fun. Read. I do just like how Eric Barker writes.

I used to have this weekly plan thing. And then at the top of it, it would be like this reminder to read a few different articles, just like skim them since I was doing it every week. Just to like, remember the things from it. And a few of those, it was like two or three of them were Eric Barker articles on like time management, productivity, prioritization, and that sort of thing.

I should re go back through those actually. But, um, I have always enjoyed his writing. He. Right with a lot of. He injects a lot of humor into his writing and, um, but it is like, Science-based he’s taking research papers, the findings in them, and then. Making them more digestible for people like me who are not going to read this foundational research.

So the first highlight. From this book. He tells a story about. It’s not like. Fictional stories. Something that actually happens. So it’s a with Jerry Falwell. Versus Larry Flint. And this was a huge legal battle. They probably put like millions of dollars into this legal battle against each other.

And you would think that they would hate each other by the end of it. And they did by the end of it. But then over the years, following that they. Kept in touch, continued to see each other, and then we’re able to build a friendship. And one of the strong, a very strong friendship where, um, I should have looked this up, but one of them speaks at the other’s funeral.

It’s a story about overcoming these political. Differences.

And connecting, um, through, I guess like humanity and friendship. And the quote here is he says, but eventually. It came to pass that they had been not enemies longer than they had been enemies over the ensuing years. They change each other’s minds about, well, nothing. But they made time for each other. They went out of their way to see each other.

That’s the end of the quote. And what I wrote here, as a note, while I was reading it is the opposite is true. Now people spend no time with each other and look for the smallest wedge of disagreement to push others away entirely because you can reach others who agree with every single thing you do. And this is more a comment, I think on say like social media.


It becomes very easy to just hate someone. Based on like one tweet that they’ve written. Um, and this is just some person in the world who you’ve never met in real life. And you just feel outraged by like some sentence that they wrote and. It can be this thing that like, if you met them in person,

Maybe you would be friends.

But we have this ability to curate who we follow and then create. A list of people who agree with every single thought that we have, you can. Just cherry pick and then find like, ah, I need to find someone that agrees with this thing. And it’s probably not very healthy. And I have this other quote, it’s not from this book.

But it was from. An article that I read recently. And. This is the quote from Edward O. Wilson. He says. The real problem of humanity is the following. We have paleolithic emotions. Medieval institutions and godlike technology. That’s the end of the quote. But it is this thing where a technology has.

Given us way too much access to. Different information and it does make the world smaller. Um, and it’s definitely like a good thing, but there are. Ways that of course. It’s a bad thing where I think the view can be technology is neutral and it just depends how you use it. Um, but maybe our brains are not ready to.

Have a thousand. Yes. Men around us all the time in our pocket.

And there is a quote in this book. Um, plays well with others. But he’s quoting someone else. So. Here it is. He says Conrad Zeus, who was considered the father of the modern computer, said. The danger that computers will become like humans is not as great as the danger that humans. We’ll become like computers.

That’s the end of the quote. Not too many thoughts here. I just wanted to say that to transition into this next book. It is called building a second brain by

Building a Second Brain

tiago forte

So, this is like my current book that I’m reading. It is. About note-taking. Um, I it’s based on a course that Tiago forte runs called building a second brain or build a second brain. And yeah, it’s about note taking and building up a note taking system. Where you.

Have your notes that you’re taking on all these different things, you organize them, and then you can. Link them together. And. Give yourself a mind like water, where as mentioned before we have access to all this information. It’s a fire hose. It’s become a bigger and bigger fire hose. Um, and.

Organizing that can be important.

Especially if you’re trying to create things with that information. You want to be able to pull it up quickly? Um, And at the same time, not get distracted by. All of the new information that’s coming today. There’s this. So Tiago forte also works closely with David Parell. They both have David PRL runs this other.

Writing course called Rite of passage. And he has this article. It’s a short article, but he just talks about, he tells a story about being in an Uber with his friends, and then just sitting back, not looking at his phone and realizing obviously like everyone’s kind of always on their phones. It makes it like, you can picture that you hop in an Uber with friends, everyone checks their phones.

That’s like a natural point to check your phone.

And then. Why he realizes, oh, everyone is. Looking at content that was created in the last 24 hours. And probably within the last hour, in a lot of cases, if everyone’s checking Twitter or Instagram, Um, Anyway, that just goes to show like this fire hose. Is. Just. Things made in the last day, there’s just a fire hose of information.

Um, so if you have the note taking system, you can.

Be a little more deliberate about having the quality information, rise to the top. Be able to retrieve that rather than just. Recent information. Um, and I’m still reading this, but it is a nice review of the course. And he says that this is the quote that I have here. We spend countless hours reading, listening to, and watching other people’s opinions about what we should do, how we should think and how we should live.

But make comparatively little effort, applying that knowledge and making it our own. So much of the time we are information hoarders. Stockpiling endless amounts of well-intentioned content that only ends up increasing our anxiety. That’s the end of the quote, and this is kind of this idea that, Hey, like you have control over these fire hose is actually like a, as mentioned before, like,

Yes. Um, Sometimes you can’t have too much access to things. You can curate it in a way where you just. Only read things you agree with. Um, but you have the ability also to. Look at things that you disagree with. Um, just to have other perspectives and then you can also turn some of these things off.

And reading this quote. Kind of made me want to record this podcast and. That it reminded me that I’d listened to all of these things and read these things. Um, With some intention to. Create things from them. I make videos make the podcast. Write blog posts. And I haven’t really been doing that in this year. Not as much as I would like to. So this was.

Kind of a push to like, just record. An episode and get back into that routine of. Making things each week. The podcast is probably like the most fun thing. I’ve said that like many times even doing it alone. It is. The most fun thing, the least stressful thing. I’ll say that like writing alone is probably like the most.

Stressful thing puts me in a bad mood after I’m almost always in like a bad mood after I sit down and I’m like, oh, I’m going to like write an essay or like write a long blog post. And. Um, I rarely ever feel that way. Doing the podcast. So I’m just going to do the podcast. It’s the easiest thing. It’s the thing that is, I guess like most joyful, if I’ve the warriors won a championship and it’s always that steep career thing of finding ways to bring.

Joy. To the organization, to the team, have them play with joy. Kevin Duran made fun of it and then left the team. Um, But I have. I have not. Always rooted for the warriors. Pretty much always have rooted against them,

But I have always. Like that idea of playing with joy. And I do like a lot of the players that are on their team.

And just a random thing. Speaking of just having recent news recent information. Come up instead of the quality information. One of the recent things that happened is right before the last game of the finals was the clay Thompson impersonator. Little known fact, I think is he runs or he used to run.

I think he probably is still the owner. Uh, One of the biggest Labrador YouTube channels called life of Labradors, which has brought a lot of joy to me and Amy’s life. And. Last year so that I always get a kick out of that, that. This clay Thompson impersonator. His main channel has like 8 million viewers.

Where he does things like this and does the similar to like what Mr. Beast. Used to do where it’s, um, kind of on the street. Give someone like $10,000. Or like try to prank people at the gym and that sort of thing, but. Um, his other channel was this. Um,

Channel about. His Labrador retrievers. I think he had like three, three of them. Well, here it started with one, had four. And then. The first one passed away at five years old. Um, Shout out Chiefy.

And he has this tribute video.

For him. Or it’s two videos. So one of them shows like the last day and he takes chief. Four. A full day of just like, he just says, like, I’m going to spoil. This dog, rotten. Um, and then. He has another video where it’s just like a highlight reel. Showing his life from being a puppy. Two. Um,

All the way till it, you know, he passes away. And I don’t watch that video because it makes me cry. So anyway I’m going to go play with booster. My Labrador.

And I do have a clay Thompson Jersey for. For whatever reason.

I don’t root for them, but I’m happy to buy the Jersey after a few drinks at the arena with friends. Thanks for listening.