“The best way to outperform is to avoid the disasters” – Jim Chanos
(Photo: 401K)Read More...
Life as Art
“I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was.” – Muhammad Ali
Ever since I got out of high school I have been keeping track of anything I come across which I think could benefit me. Whether it is a saying, an insight, or a different way of viewing the world, I was looking for anything which might help me to become better. Over the years, I have accumulated notebooks and spreadsheets full of things categorized by different topics. I want to share as much as I can with you.
Many of these tips are things I figured out on my own, a lot are quotes and ideas I came across over years of reading, listening and thinking. I tried to give credit where credit is due, but many ideas are without attribution only because I did not write them down at the time and came back to them after some reflection.
I hope one or two ideas might change the way you view the world and your life and I hope that there is something in my writings which will help you become the best you.Read More...
“Speed, it seems to me, provides the one genuinely modern pleasure.” – Aldous Huxley
I recently wrote an article mentioning about how my old Acura Integra was faster than the fastest car from the 1920′s and 1930′s. The point was not that my Acura was necessarily fast (it was not) but that over the years the automotive technology has improved so much that even an average old jalopy, made over the last 20 years, is on average faster than the fastest cars made even 60 years ago. I decided to see just how fast that evolution was taking place and just how long it would take for your average car to be as fast as a sports car made today. For comparison I took the Porsche Boxter.
Depending what model we look at, the Boxter 0 to 60 times are between 4.2 and 5.5 seconds. I decided to use a good round number of 5 seconds as the time to reach for. I also picked a few car models which are not known for their speed and whose performance data went back at least two decades. I used 0 to 60 website to gather the information and used the fastest time for each year on each model. So how do the numbers look?Read More...
“There is a gigantic difference between earning a great deal of money and being rich” – Marlene Dietrich
(Photo: Loco Steve)
I woke up in a cheap Motel 6 hotel room somewhere off the interstate in East Florida. I had been on the road now for over a month, traveling in an old Acura that I bought off my roommate for $1500 bucks. I had been out of work for months now with very little money in my pocket so I resorted to sleeping in my car or in cheap hotel rooms seeing how little I could live on each day. I spent my days sightseeing, hiking, seeing the country and trying to find myself. For the first time in my life I was completely free, accountable to nobody, and I was as happy as I had ever been.
The reason for me being in Florida was because it was now the middle of winter and Florida was one of the few places where it was warm enough that I could sleep in my car most nights without freezing to death. I’d been reading a book I picked up at a used book shop for a dollar called Victorian Florida and became fascinated by the life of Henry Flagler. Flagler built the railroad line into Florida along with a number of luxurious hotels over a century ago where millionaires would come from up north each winter to vacation. If you were rich and you were anybody you were in Florida staying in one of the grand hotels built by Flagler. Many of the hotels still stood and I was determined to visit them all. I took a tour the Casa Monica Hotel in St Augustine, explored the Old Ponce De Leon, now part of Flagler College, had a drink at Breakers in Palm Beach and toured the Flagler Museum. I tried to imagine what it must have been like all those years ago being a multimillionaire and arriving in your own private railcar at one of the majestic hotels.
One day while talking to one of the tour guides I learned what it was really like to be one of those multimillionaires staying at one of the Flagler grand hotels a century ago. The tour guide explained that many hotels just barely had hot running water and it was unreliable. The water in the room smelled like rotten eggs because of sulfur and air conditioning and refrigeration has not been invented yet. I realized something amazing that day, even as I was living like a vagabond staying in a cheap motel room. The quality of my life was better than that of multimillionaires 100 years ago. I had reliable hot running water in my room, I had a fridge, the water did not smell and I had a working air conditioner. All the luxuries that the rich did not have all those years ago I had for less than $30 bucks. I realized that being in that motel room; I had it better than the richest of the rich a century ago.
I then decided to look at other parts of my life to see how it compared. What would I do if I was a multimillionaire living all those years ago?Read More...
Daniel from Turn to Experts interviews me. Oct 2013.
8:15 – Why nobody in society talks about being great with women without needing money.
10:25 – Advice for guys just starting out. What advice I would give myself if I could go back in time.
14:25 – Practical things guys can do to become great with women.
18:45 – Why affirmations work.
24:00 – How the fear of heaving nothing keeps you from having everything.
34:20 – Mindset of successful people.
40:12 – Formula to be great with women and money.
50:32 – On getting great and losing friends.
53:45 – Money and happiness. Mistake most people who become rich make.
57:50 – My advice for starting a new business.Read More...
“You only need to get rich once” – Warren Buffett
(Photo: Steve Jurvetson)
Sometimes a simple quote can change your whole life. For me it happened over a decade ago when I was reading the book The Warren Buffett CEO, by Robert P. Miles. In the book, Warren’s quote “You only need to get rich once” hit me hard and altered how I viewed wealth forever. The quote was in response to one of his CEOs who wanted to short Internet stocks during the height of the dot-com mania, to which Warren advised against doing using that witty line.
To some that quote meant that there is no reason to risk something when you are already wealthy, but to me it was something much larger. To me, it was an understanding that becoming rich is a destination that you only need to arrive at once in your life. Even though what I am about to explain may seem obvious it will change how you view wealth and becoming rich forever.
So what do I mean by Escape Velocity and how does it relate to money?Read More...
“Caution has not been a profitable investment tactic for a long time now. I strongly believe it is about to make a comeback.” – Seth Klarman
“Drinking is an emotional thing. It joggles you out of the standardism of everyday life, out of everything being the same. It yanks you out of your body and your mind and throws you against the wall. I have the feeling that drinking is a form of suicide where you’re allowed to return to life and begin all over the next day. It’s like killing yourself, and then you’re reborn. I guess I’ve lived about ten or fifteen thousand lives now.” - Charles Bukowski
(Photo: SnaPsi Сталкер)
Man has been drinking alcohol for over 9000 years, and for the last 9000 years has been trying to solve the same age old problem: How to avoid “Beer Goggles”. (No, not really)
The real problem man has been trying to figure out is how to keep the alcohol buzz going for the longest period of time without getting too drunk or too sober and without having a hangover. That’s a tall order but I am going to explain the best system that I came up with to answer that age old question and how it can help you drink better.Read More...
“Believe me, there’s nothing better than buying from someone who has to sell regardless of price during a crash. Many of the best buys we’ve ever made occurred for that reason.” – Howard Marks
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“There’s no obstacles that you have to jump
There’s no walls that you have to climb
This is real, this is elementary dear
Elementary, Watson, Elementary “ – ODB “Nowhere to Run
Knowledge is an interesting thing. It seems that the most important things you need to know for a happy life you need to figure out on your own and are never taught in school.
I took wood shop in high school it was mandatory. I built a wine rack and a bird house. The wine rack is still collecting dust somewhere in my mom’s basement and I am not sure what happened to my bird house which came out looking like something Frank Gehry built after a weekend bender. If any bird was actually brave enough to inhabit my birdhouse I am sure they could have sued me for multiple safety code violations. I never picked up a wood chisel again and most likely never will. I think back at all the useless classes I took in middle school and high school (home economics, sewing, metal shop) so much wasted time, so much useless information. Yet one of the most important things in life I needed to learn for happiness and success was never taught to me. It was how to be good with the opposite sex, make friends and be social. Learning those things not only would have prevented my childhood from being emotionally scarring but also would have led to more love and self acceptance.
Unfortunately, I had to figure those things out on my own much later.
Out of all the things I have tried and achieved in life, none of them have helped me grow as much as becoming good with women. I am not saying that my life improved because I was able to get laid more, I am saying becoming good with women has helped me build my confidence. It helped more than anything else I’ve tried and has greatly improved my relationships in business and family and led to self acceptance. I am a MUCH better human being because of it.
I have talked to many men who took the same path that I did later in life and all swear that becoming good with the opposite sex was the one thing that helped them improve all aspects of their lives. Yet for some reason I have always felt awkward sharing this information even though I think it’s one of the most valuable pieces of advice I can give. I am not the only one, most guys I have talked to feel the same way. It’s not that they refuse to acknowledge that information it’s just that they feel there is some stigma attached to it and they would rather not volunteer it. Why is that? Why would a piece of information that can be so beneficial be so scary to discuss in public? Why is it so taboo to say that becoming good with women is a skill that can be learned? It’s no different than learning to ride a bike. Why does saying “I learned to be good with women and so can you” seem somehow dirty?
There is some belief in our culture which says that learning to have abundance with women is bad. It’s not that sleeping with a lot of women is bad, since we celebrate movie stars and rock stars who lead decadent lifestyles. But somehow going from a loser to someone who is desired by women does have a negative stigma attached to it. The notion of a man going from being a total nerd to becoming desired by many women is always depicted as a comical caricature only involving him becoming either rich, famous or building a great physique.
Let me give you an example.
Picture Walt. Walt is thirty six years old. He lives in a small studio apartment is 20 pounds overweight and drives a fork lift at Costco for a living. Walt has tried online dating and has even been in a few short relationships over the last decade, but the number of sexual partners he has had can be counted on one hand. Walt decides to start a band and write a few songs. The songs becomes popular on YouTube, Walt gets a recording contract and starts touring, his band starts playing larger and larger venues. Walt is now rich and famous, has his own plane and travels the world playing sold out shows and having sex with multiple women on a regular basis. Walt is a star and women want to have sex with him backstage after every show.
Now let’s try scenario number two.
Picture Walt. Walt is thirty six years old. He lives in a small studio apartment is 20 pounds overweight and drives a fork lift at Costco for a living. Walt has tried online dating and has even been in a few short relationships over the last decade, but the number of sexual partners he has had can be counted on one hand. Walt decides he has had enough, so he takes a workshop to learn how to be good with women. He learns how to talk to women, how to be more interesting and how to make women feel special. Walt still drives a fork lift at Costco lives in the same small studio apartment yet he is having sex with multiple women on a regular basis because he learned how to be sexually attractive to women.
Everyone can picture rock star Walt and why he is desired by women, yet the Costco Walt somehow seems phony. But why? Both Walts are highly desired by women, both get laid equally. Yet somehow as I paint that picture you assume that Costco Walt is somehow creepy or a phony and even if he is getting laid somehow he is tricking women into sleeping with him.
I have known a lot of “Costco Walts”. Those guys are out there. They are not the most attractive, they are not the richest but they learned how to make women feel special and how to make women want them. They get laid as often as “Rock star Walt”. Yet the notion that someone can learn to be great with women without “earning it” is still taboo in our culture. Having mobility on the sexual pecking order ladder is accepted as long as you accomplish something like becoming rich or famous, but climbing it on skill alone becomes somehow terrifying and wrong.
I’ve been thinking about this question for quite a while. Since I could not come up with any easy answer that jumped out at me, I assumed the answer must be a lot more primal, more obfuscated and more deeply and subconsciously engrained into our society. I have found that when it comes to sexuality, anytime you hit a roadblock the answer usually can be found by looking at evolution. I believe this is where this answer lies.Read More...
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