You

“Sometimes it’s their looks, but it’s never just that.”

I recently rediscovered a dazzling post from one of my previous favorite writers on Medium, who has taken lately to more of a “We’re screwed” vibe. 🤷🏻‍♂️

👉What Really Makes Someone Beautiful

Despite the title, this is not just one of those “beauty is only skin deep” platitudes.

Aren’t we drawn to people with hidden depth and curiosity? People who show who they really are. People who are strong, funny, creative, and kind. People who see beauty in the weirdness and in the darkness. People who are not innocent, even if they appear innocent.

Beauty is more mysterious than simple good looks and can be found in the balance between all these things.

Me · Practical

In case you notice a change in case

It struck me recently that I didn’t have a strategy for capitalizing my blog posts. So I’m making a change.

As the sole proprietor of this blog, I hereby decree that henceforth and regressively back to 1 June, year 2021, all blog posts shall follow the Sentence case standard.

Title Case was starting to bug me. It was overly formal and hard to read, as in Who Do You Want to Be On The Other Side Of This Crisis? And it was confusing. Which words do you capitalize, again? I took my best guess on 5 Things You Don’t Need to be Happy, Fulfilled, and Successful.

Plus Capital Case was constantly being dissed up by quotation-titles such as “The only real escape from hell is to conquer it.”

Capital Case also made it hard distinguish Proper Nouns from normal words, as in Favorite Austin Hotel Pools. Was that post about hotel pools in Austin? Or was it about pools at the Austin Hotel?

I’m pretty happy with this change, so much so that I am tempted to go back and fix all the old posts, such as “Favorite Austin Hotel Pools” to “Favorite Austin hotel pools”. But there are 742 of them, and sometimes it’s better to live with your imperfect past anyways.

With that, enjoy all the easier-to-read blog titles, future reader. I’m going to figure out punctuation for quotations next. 🤷🏻‍♂️

The World

The weird, scrappy 2021 Olympics

The Tokyo Olympics are kicking off today. 🇯🇵

I remember the Olympics being unambiguously awesome. 🤟

Things are more complicated today. Some Tokyoites are not too happy about hosting the games. Olympics officials are being fired for saying dumb things. There are lingering questions about whether rotating the Olympics is wasteful or whether we should have the Olympics at all.

Still, great athletes will be in Tokyo.

My favorite story is about athletes finding a way to stay in fighting form for an extra year despite the pandemic and wildfires.

From sword fighting in a New York City alley, to wresting with your brother, to swimming in a kiddie pool, this scrappy spirit is what the Olympics are all about.

👉Olympians Had to Train During a Pandemic. These Are Their Weirdest Stories.

All of this is via Apple News and their not-too-newsy daily news podcast.

I kind of like the classic round Olympic stadium in Tokyo. It looks like it’s from 1984.
Quotes · The World

“Consider yourself blessed if you have a passion for anything.”

At the end of an article about a decades-long archaeology effort in Southern California, the protagonist says this:

Consider yourself blessed if you have a passion for anything. Passion is a way of organizing your life; otherwise you go off in 20 different directions, and in the end, you wonder what you have.

Fred E. Budinger (LA Times | Apple News)

This dude knows what he’s talking about.

Fred E. Budinger has been pushing to prove, from the evidence in the ground in the Mojave Desert, that humans were in North American 200,000 years ago (not 11,000 years ago as previously thought) despite decades of misfortune, hostility, and even vandalism.

Good luck to you, Fred (pictured right, below). ✌️ Your passion is inspiring.

Music

“Once In a Lifetime” – riding the wave of midlife

The Talking Heads used to annoy me. They seemed too self-consciously nerdy, as if to say, “Hey, look how weird and nerdy we are! Come on, our music is so weird and confusing!” And David Byrne’s dance moves were super annoying!

Years later, I have come to realize two things:

  1. David Byrne’s dance moves were so annoying because those are my dance moves. 😱. I’ll show you if you don’t believe me.
  2. The song Once In a Lifetime is absolutely brilliant. 🤯

This song is all about time flowing relentlessly under your feet as you try to figure out what the hell you’re doing in your life.

At least that’s my take, thank you very much.

The tight, precise beat underneath emphasizes the odd arrangement layered on top, with perfect midlife observations like this:

You may ask yourself, “What is that beautiful house?”
You may ask yourself, “Where does that highway go to?”
And you may ask yourself, “Am I right? Am I wrong?”
And you may say to yourself, “My God! What have I done?”

But time doesn’t care. It just flows on.

Letting the days go by, let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by, water flowing underground

I guess we all hit a 500-foot waterfall eventually. The only question is what happens between here and there. Do you learn to swim with the river and enjoy the journey, or do you let the water knock and bruise you on the rocks?

Good luck out there. 🏊🏻‍♂️✌️

Travel

From rebel outpost to Silicon Docks

The story of Boland Mills in Dublin is sort of the story of modern Ireland itself.

In 1916, the mills stood as a rebel outpost for an independent Irish state. Now it’s part of a high-end residential development in that independent Irish state. See the post for more. 👇

This looks like an interesting stop on my upcoming trip to Ireland. ☘️

Software Dev

“Perhaps you could tell us what you personally have been doing for the last seven years.”

As MacBreak Weekly celebrated the 14th anniversary of the iPhone’s launch, I was reminded of Steve Jobs’ “redemptive arc.”

Here is Jobs addressing a somewhat hostile question at the 1997 WWDC. At the time, Apple was nearly out of money, and Jobs had just returned after previously being kicked out of the company.

George Bernard Shaw said that “your patience when you have nothing” is one of the two things that define you. It’s interesting to look at Steve Jobs when he is down and see the vision and patience that was brewing at the time.

As we have tried to come up with a strategy and a vision for Apple, it started with what incredible benefits can we give to the customer, where can we take the customer. Not starting with ‘let’s sit down with the engineers and figure out what awesome technology we have and then how are we going to market that’.

And I think that’s the right path to take.

It would be four more years until the iPod launched and ten years until the iPhone launched.

The end of Jobs’ answer also reminded me of Teddy Roosevelt.

Some mistakes will be made a long the way. That’s good, because at least some decisions will be made along the way.

Steve Jobs

Ah yes, patience and decisiveness. Like a good game, they are easy to learn and hard to master.

Quotes · You

“What a man can be, he must be.”

Good ol’ Abraham Maslow, the American psychologist who gave us a pyramid and a hammer, is at it again with some pretty sensible insights.

This time he’s riffing on Aristotle’s function argument about what the heck we’re even doing here. Basically, we’re here to be useful.

A musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write, if he is to be ultimately at peace with himself. What a man can be, he must be. This need we may call self-actualization.

(Apparently he was an old-school fan of the “he/him/man” pronoun. 🤷🏻‍♂️)

It’s one thing to find your purpose — and those who do so should consider themselves fortunate. But the real trick is to actually do something about it.

It refers to man’s desire for self-fulfillment, namely, to the tendency for him to become actually in what he is potentially: to become everything that one is capable of becoming.

Thank you for the reminder, Mazzy. Can I call you that? Because here’s another Mazzy who found her purpose.

You

How To Talk To People You Disagree With

Lots of people are still hesitant to get the Corona vaccine. Maybe you’re one of them. Or maybe they’re driving you crazy.

If you want to know how to talk to people about this — or really about any subject on which you disagree with someone — then there are some good tips in this example text message conversation.

Hint: It turns out that it’s not helpful to lecture people, judge them, or overload them with information. Who knew? 🤷🏻‍♂️😉

Books · You

Super Summary: Think Like a Monk

I accidentally subscribed to this visual book insights app called Lucid. It promised “Read faster. Remember more.” so I had to try it. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Neglecting to cancel my free trial (oops!), I now have a full year of this service, so I might as well get the most out of it.

So this is my first “super summary” (a summary of the summary) for books I find interesting. You can see if you’re interested in reading the real thing. (audiobook | “book” book).

Think Like a Monk by Jay Shetty

👉 Luckily, we can take some useful lessons from monks without actually being Christian or abstinent. 😜

The monk mentality

Via Lucid

A monk has an inward focus and moves past pain and anxiety, leading to a happier and more meaningful life.

A monk focuses on core issues, long-term vision, and strives to find meaning. This is in contrast to a “monkey” mind, which is distracted, overwhelmed, and focusing on temporary fixes.

Identity and meaning

Via Lucid

Our core values define who we are and the meaning of our life. Our values should come from within rather than from other people’s influence.

We need to figure out what we’re all about so that we can focus our priorities and goals.

👉 This fits with some things the Savvy Psychologist said about values and meaning.

Dealing with negativity

👉 This section reminds me of the idea that people’s criticism often says more about themselves than the person they are criticizing. 🧐

If you think of others negatively, you think of yourself negatively.

To break this cycle: identity your negative thoughts towards others, stop, and reframe them in a more empathetic, specific, and helpful way.

If you think of others more positively, you think of yourself more positively and make better choices.

Conquering Fear

Via Lucid

👉 I like this section because I learned a while back that decisions driven by fear generally do not turn out well. 😱

Identify your deepest underlying fears. Acknowledge these fears and embrace them.

Then detach from your fears to make smart, independent, intentional choices.

Positive routines

👉 Despite this book calling for an early morning routine, I’m personally finding a relaxing nighttime routine especially useful. 😴

Wake up early to give yourself time to have a positive boost to your day. Use this time to be grateful, read & learn, meditate, and exercise.

Get to bed early and plan how you will conquer the next day.

The battle in your mind

Via Lucid

👉 I love this section because of the wolf analogy. 🤩

In each of our minds are two wolves battling with each other for control. One wolf is consumed by fear, anger, insecurity, and ego. The other is driven by love, kindness, humility, and positivity.

You can feed one of them (yes the good one!) by giving it your time and energy.

This internal battle is normal, and we should view it as external to us. Use meditation to observe your mind and better understand what might be triggering any negative thoughts.

Reframe negative thoughts in a positive way, changing problems and fears into positive actions.

Me · Music

“I Want It All”

Here is Japanese Breakfast’s perfect companion to The Walkmen singing “Baby, I want everything”.

I want it all.

Japanese Breakfast – Diving Woman

I’m feeling this vibe. I do want it all.

I don’t want six cars, a mansion, a helicopter, or even a fancy watch. Please, no. Just no.

I do want to travel, but not all the time. I could probably spend 1000 years happily just goofing around Central Texas.

But I do want to write a novel, make some music, raise some amazing kids, have a long and challenging career, learn to tell good stories and jokes, improve the world a bit, take care of myself, and be a good friend.

Am I asking too much? We shall see. 😆

We’re only given this one life, so you might as well at least try to make the most of it.

You’ll have it all
I’ll have it all
We’ll have it all

creativity · entertainment

Don’t Be Like Uncle Colm

Writing a full-length novel turns out to be hard. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Even if you know the story you want to tell, there are myriad challenges such as finding your voice, getting into the creative mood, and consistently finding the time to focus.

My latest challenge is pretty basic – figuring out what level of detail to use in the story. I want to make the story is engaging and specific, rather than just sweeping over things with the wave of a hand. 👋

But too much detail quickly turns into sounding like Uncle Colm from Derry Girls.

So if I ever find myself adding unnecessary detail and de-emphasizing the main story line, then I need to watch Uncle Colm as a little kick in the butt.

Or soon enough, people will be saying, “Alright, Colm, let’s pack it up. You’re tied to the radiator…” 🤦🏻‍♂️

You

“Meaning is what’s left when everything else is stripped away.”

Cool quote from this TED talk about almost dying and then living.

Meaning is not found in the material realm; it’s not in dinner, jazz, cocktails or conversation. Meaning is what’s left when everything else is stripped away.

There are lots of way to interpret that quote, of course.

One way I look at it is this: life is about who you are. If everything in your life suddenly disappeared and you were dropped into an empty field in an unknown country, what person would be standing there?

I’m not talking about some crazy Naked and Afraid survival scenario. Suppose you have some money and some clothes. But not much else. Who is that person standing in the field? What does he know? What does he want? How does he move forward? How will he impact the world around him? That’s who you are.

I’m not actually sure if that’s what that quote meant ☝️, but there’s my take. 😆

This goes with Aristotle’s idea that the meaning of life is what you do — how you impact the real world. As humans, we are uniquely gifted with smart brains and “rational faculty”. We are happiest when we use these minds for some purpose in the world.

A poet should write, a teacher teach, and a doctor heal. Not only should each person do their thing, but they should do it well.

I don’t know about you, but I find that pretty inspirational. 😊

You

5 Things You Don’t Need to be Happy, Fulfilled, and Successful

This Medium post has lots of juicy points.

👉 5 Things You Don’t Need to be Happy, Fulfilled, and Successful

It’s so good that I am just going to summarize it and quote it a lot right here per my own goals, but you should read it for yourself.

You Don’t Need A Bunch of Money – But making money encourages personal growth and gives you freedom and peace of mind. And the personal growth keeps you away from bad jobs, bad bosses, and bad commutes.

You Don’t Need to “Find Your Passion” – Just be good at something. Passion comes from being good at something, not the other way around. Being good at decent job can get you autonomy, a sense of meaning, and a positive work environment.

If you want to love what you do, abandon the passion mindset (“what can the world offer me?”) and instead adopt the craftsman mindset (“what can I offer the world?”).

Cal Newport

You Don’t Need Everyone to Like You – “The best way to get other people to like you is to learn how to like yourself.”

You Don’t Need (Or Even Want) to Be Famous – “What can you pursue if fame isn’t the answer? Pursue building a tribe instead.”

I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer.

Jim Carrey

You Don’t Need Your Life to be a Movie – “You want a feeling of accomplishment, growth, and the pride that comes from following through with your goals.”

The secret of leadership is simple: Do what you believe in. Paint a picture of the future. Go there. People will follow.

Seth Godin
creativity · You

Genius Happens When You’re Not Thinking

I love the idea that your brain makes its most interesting breakthroughs and connections when you’re not actively thinking. It is well stated in this article.

👉 Your Unconscious Mind Is a Supercomputer. Use It to Achieve Breakthroughs.

With really interesting problems, you usually don’t need to think harder. You need to relax and let you mind do its thing while you sleep or do errands. That is when genius strikes. ⚡️

Creativity is all about making interesting connections. Albert Einstein called it “combination play.”

In my experience, this unconscious combo play is important for figuring out what do to and not so much how to do it. Once the what is clear in your mind, it can be followed by all the conscious thinking and hard work to get it done. Unfortunately, that part does not happen in your sleep. 😉

As a side note, there is also a beautiful space when your mind is so immediate and present that is simply doesn’t have time to think. This is what I like about improv. And also baseball.

You can’t think and hit at the same time.

Yogi Berra (maybe)
You

Get Ready For The Roaring 2020’s

I’ve been saying for a few months that I really want to make the most of this awful pandemic. Stuck at home with time on your hands, it’s a great chance to focus and reinvent yourself. So I loved seeing this post touting the idea that we’re just getting ready for the next phase of our lives individually and collectively.

Prepare for the Golden Age: Why The Next Decade Will be Awesome

This post says that people will thrive in the coming years if they have the right attitude and beliefs, or dwindle if they let the changes in the world beat them down.

Many of us have spent the past year not just coping with the present moment, but getting better. When the conditions are back to normal, we’re already going to have momentum. The golden age is upon us.

Is this just wishful thinking? Maybe so, but your beliefs tend to become your reality, so this is a good starting point.

And as more people believe this, the more real it will be for everyone.

The world has been through much worse than the current situation and come out better on the other end. Make the most of it.

I just feel something in the air. I feel an awakening. I have this strong conviction that a large portion of society is just done with the pessimistic outrage culture nonsense. We’re ready to take control of not just the discourse, but our own lives.

Happy roaring 2020’s.

Image for post
Austin

Favorite Austin Hotel Pools

There’s just something about a hotel pool. 🤩 Here are some wet and sunny spots to enjoy around Austin. This picture is of the Austin Motel pool, but many more are listed in the post.

creativity · You

Express Yourself (Ethan Hawke Edition)

Ethan Hawke gives an inspiring talk on creativity and how it forces you know yourself, lets you empathize with others, and gives you room to be a happy fool.

In singing our song, in telling our story, in inviting you to say, “Hey, listen to me, and I’ll listen to you,” we’re starting a dialogue. And when you do that, this healing happens, and we come out of our corners, and we start to witness each other’s common humanity. We start to assert it. And when we do that, really good things happen.

If you want to help your community, if you want to help your family, if you want to help your friends, you have to express yourself. And to express yourself, you have to know yourself.

Software Dev

Scroll Hitch Rate

Xcode 12 is adding a new metric to objectively track how smoothly your app scrolls. This is kind of cool since scrolling smoothness feels right and is a sign of a good design.

Via iOS Dev Weekly.

Texas

10 Weird and Wonderful Places to Stay in Texas

Are you tired of sitting around the house during this pandemic? Do you want to get out somewhere fun and interesting but keep socially distanced?

If you’re in Texas and not ready to hop on an airplane or crowd into some cosmopolitan hotel, then this guide is for you.

👉 10 Weird & Wonderful Places to Stay in Texas

Would you like to spend your weekend in a treehouse high up in the cypress trees with a canopy tour to boot? Or perhaps in a teepee? Maybe being surrounded by gazelles, zebras, yak and emu sounds fun. Or maybe glamping in an Airstream at the beach is your cup of tea. Sleeping in a caboose is a choice. There’s also an old Spanish mission.

Okay, this all sounds like a Dr. Seuss book. I’m tempted to go back and make it rhyme. Maybe another time.

creativity · Software Dev

The Prototype Mindset

We developers spend so much time focusing on the details of our work that we sometimes forget about the big picture. The presentation below from try! Swift Tokyo has some really helpful perspective. 🤯

Think about building the right thing before building it right.

Why are you making software? Know your motivations. It affects how you do your job.

Who do you write code for? Think about how you relate to your company and the end user.

What happens when your tech stack changes? Be resilient in your career. Try new things while also shipping apps.

Be less precious about code.

Realistically, how long will this code last? How robust is robust enough? Be pragmatic. Almost all the code I’ve written in the last few years is gone by now, either retired or completely rewritten.

Don’t try to be perfect. Don’t hold back out out fear.

Real artists ship.

Steve Jobs

How often do you test? Unit tests are a means to an end. Passing unit tests alone does not mean it’s a good app.

Via iOS Dev Weekly.

You

The Shortest Self-Help Book You’ll Ever Read

Having now read enough (too many) self-help books, I was starting to think that they all overlap and are just saying different variations of the same thing. I feel like I have unofficially graduated from self-help school. 👨🏻‍🎓

So I was happy to see this post that basically captures all of the self help out there in one concise list. It’s a really good summary of how to take charge of your life and your own happiness. It has “chapters” on goals, limiting beliefs, growth mindset, thinking too much, self-care, gratitude, and all the other top hits.

👉 The Shortest Self-Help Book You’ll Ever Read

My favorite quote is from The Mortality Chapter.

You have to go about every day like you might live forever, but also like you might die tomorrow afternoon.

That pretty well describes one of the key tensions in life. Well said, Jessica Wildfire (is that a pen name or what?).

Travel

Bondi Boards

Some more inspiration to get to Australia some day, and in particular Bondi Beach. They even have shared surf boards sitting around! 🤩

You

Introvert-Friendly Conversation Tips

As a bit of an introvert, I find happy hours 🙄, networking events 🥱, and other stand-around-talking situations frustrating. They tend to feel shallow, and they get boring fast.

But these events can be fun, even for us introverts!

I really like this Medium article because it’s just such a simple win-win: tips for having fun and being more likable when meeting random people. Plus it lets the people you are stuck talking with have a better time too!

👉 3 Habits of Super-Likable People

Basically, it says to go ahead and be the geek that you really are and curiously let other people geek out about themselves. Hmm, that feels like two tips. Anyways, it’s three somehow. 🤷🏻‍♂️

There is no right or wrong way to interact with people. There’s only the authentic way — being you; which means connecting with others in a way that feels right for you.

See also: 3 Ways To Improve A Conversation If You’re An Introvert (👉 Ask Open-Ended Questions, Don’t Make The Conversation About Yourself, Improve Your Body Language.

By the way, these tips overlap a lot with a previous post about easy conversation here as well.

Practical · You

Things and the 5 Second Rule

I recently came across this book on Audible called The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins. I didn’t end up buying the book since I don’t want to send 7 hrs and 35 mins listening to a book about a 5-second strategy. The math just didn’t add up for me. 😆

But I saw there was a short TED talk on the 5 Second Rule plus an even shorter YouTube video on the topic.

The basic idea is that as you go through your day, you have things constantly popping into your head. These are fleeting things that you should do, would like to do, useful ideas, and so forth. Mel says you have 5 seconds to act on that idea or it’s gone, or at least you won’t do anything about it. And acting on those ideas is the difference between making the life you want and not. 🤯

I like that idea. But what can you actually do in 5 seconds? I mean, you’re probably driving or out for a jog or playing Wii. You can’t necessarily write down a note or call up your cousin right then and there and invite him to lunch. You can’t go adopt a dog in 5 seconds. And you sure as hell can’t write a book in 5 seconds.

Mel has other suggestions on how to handle this 5-second period, but I’ve been dumping things like this into the appropriately named Things app on my iPhone. It goes like this:

Hey Siri, using Things, remind me to invite my cousin to lunch

That’s it. Now it’s in your inbox. You can figure out the details later, but at least now you have a placeholder / reminder. My Things inbox has grown way too long to be useful in the past (way into the hundreds), but I eventually fought it down, gradually turning this list into projects or reference notes or calendar reminders. I’ve also turned more than 400 fleeting thoughts into a database of book ideas (thanks to Evernote).

The only way I keep my Things inbox under control is to clean out the inbox once a week on Sundays. Usually I have about 40 things for the week to act on, organize, file, or discard. It takes about an hour a week.

And by the way, both this very blog and this specific post came out of a 5-second thought. 🤓

Hey Siri, using Things, remind me to check out Mel Robbins and The 5 Second Rule

creativity · You

Maslow’s Pyramid

A while back, I posted a link to the Artist’s Hierarchy of Needs. The idea seemed useful, although it was not a hierarchy per se, but more of just a list. 🤷🏻‍♂️

I think the idea of the artist’s hierarchy was inspired Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, which is more of a real hierarchy. So it’s kind of cool to see this post.

👉 SELF CARE PART 2: CREATIVE HIERARCHY OF NEEDS

Basically it says that you need take good care of yourself before you can aspire to your “ultimate self-actualization”. I guess that’s super obvious, but still it makes for a cool idea and a good visual. 😆

Picture

And the Creatively, LLC blog looks great overall beyond this post. I like their motto, “Create Your Best Life”. Via Fresh Ink Austin

The World

Why the Universe Contains Something Rather Than Nothing ✨🤷🏻‍♂️

Who would have thought that answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything lies in giant tank of water 3000 feet under Japan? And the answer is not 42.

Scientists on Wednesday announced that they were perhaps one step closer to understanding why the universe contains something rather than nothing.

👉 Why the Big Bang Produced Something Rather Than Nothing (New York Times)

This story is not just about speculation or a cool idea. This story is about scientists working at an underground laboratory in Japan, trying to catch neutrinos, sent from 180 miles away. This experiment helps them understand why matter won over anti-matter at the beginning of time, and thus why the universe is full of, well, stuff (this was apparently not a foregone conclusion 🤷🏻‍♂️).

As a result, a universe that started out with a clean balance sheet — equal amounts of matter and antimatter — wound up with an excess of matter: stars, black holes, oceans and us.

This article is full of mind-blowing quotes.

These ghostly subatomic particles stream from the Big Bang, the sun, exploding stars and other cosmic catastrophes, flooding the universe and slipping through walls and our bodies by the billions every second, like moonlight through a screen door.

I love the balanced excitement / skepticism of the scientists, calling this news “undeniably exciting.”

There are further plans to send neutrinos from a lab in Illinois 800 miles underground to a giant underground detector at an old gold mine in South Dakota. 🇺🇸


creativity · You

Improv Class and Uncharted Territory

A few months ago, I took an improv class. You might think I did it to learn to be funnier. I mean, it did help a little. But mostly it helped my attitude, just being open and ridiculous. I do still have a stockpile of ready-made dad jokes, though.

Improv is not only about laughs. It’s about facing uncharted territory with curiosity, enthusiasm, and fearlessness.

The post below perfectly captures the real reason that I took improv, which is mainly dealing with fears and ambiguity when you can’t sit and think about it for more than, say, two seconds. I’m naturally a sit-and-think-about-it kind of person, so I needed some help on that. 🤷🏻‍♂️

👉 Improv as a Crisis Management Tool: Tackling Uncharted Territory

Cheat sheet from the article… Improv helps with:

  • Helping people build out their ideas even if you don’t agree with or understand them
  • Learning how to make decisions on a shoestring
  • Fearlessness, bravery and getting comfortable with mistakes

By the way, Merlin Works, the same place where I took my improv class, is now offering online Zoom improv classes for the pandemic. If this thing drags on long enough, I might do improv 201 online. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Music · The World

New York, New York 🎶

Here’s a great tribute to New York City as it suffers through the coronavirus.

We are tough but we are tender, and we fucking love our city though it feels impossible sometimes.

Also, as a musician, it was encouraging to hear her say “This took me a whole day to learn.” 🤷🏻‍♂️

Software Dev

Mac-assed Mac Apps 😆

I came across the phrase “Mac-assed Mac apps” 😆 in this short post about Proxyman. Proxyman is a “Modern and Delightful Web Debugging Proxy” for the Mac.

👉Proxyman

Proxyman SSL Proxying on macOS iOS and Android

Proxyman looks like a really nice alternative to Charles Proxy, which is very functional but drearily cross-platform app for Mac, Windows, and Linux.

Other examples are Mac-assed Mac apps are the Paw REST client as an alternative to the cumbersome Postman and Things as a true Mac-first app. And I’ll add Mail as an alternative to the crusty Outlook, which is slow to load and I just cannot use because it doesn’t support the standard Mac keyboard shortcuts (e.g. Clrt-A, Crtl-E).

What can I say, I just love these true Mac-assed Mac apps because they’re fun and easy to use. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Via iOS Dev Weekly.

Travel

Rolf’s NYC

Cool-looking German restaurant for next time I’m in New York City.

You

Can’t Sleep? Try ‘Quiet Wakefulness’ Instead

I just stumbled upon this idea myself and love that it’s being validated here. ☺️

If you can’t sleep, then don’t stress about it. Just lay there and meditate. Or simply lay still and relax without trying to sleep. It’s low-stress and almost as good as actual sleep.

👉 Can’t Sleep? Try ‘Quiet Wakefulness’ Instead

Actually, with meditation it’s better in some ways such as in increase in “relaxation, an uptick in creativity, a decrease in depressive symptoms“.

The way I look at this is, if I wake up at 3:00 am, this is a great chance to mediate (laying-down style) with no time pressure at all. All sleep-stress goes away, and it feels pretty luxurious. It’s best to have some basic meditation practice down first, of course. But nothing fancy is required.

Most of the time I fall back asleep. But if not, I’m still getting meaningful rest and feelin’ good!