How to be a dick at the grocery store

7 01 2013
  1. Walk in the center of a parking lane
  2. Check out in self check out (limit 15 items) with over 30 items and who knows how many coupons, crumpled of course so they won’t scan
  3. Wear a suit indicating you have a decent job, proceed to pay in self check out line with quarters.  But don’t bother paying attention, stare at #2 while pulling 3 or 4 quarters out of your back pocket at a time and lazily try to get quarters in the slot.  When out of quarters pull out your nice leather wallet and use bills.
  4. Take 5 minutes to look up jalapeno in the self service line because you’re A too dumb to read a number off the sticker or B too dumb to use the search feature.  All while listening to your ipod.

Took me 10 minutes to buy some chicken for dinner.  Come on people, what happened to common courtesy?

Scam of the day: Low anything food

9 06 2012

If you want to decrease fat, carbs, cholesterol, or anything in your diet, why not eat foods that are already low in it, instead of buying a more expensive frankenfood?

I have a hypothesis:  if they take something out, they have to put something else in, and I bet that it’s worse for you than whatever they took out.

I find low-fat to be a particularly clever scam, seeing as how I believe fat in your food isn’t the main contributor to obesity.  Just for a moment think, what if Atkins was right and sugar is the problem.  Low fat ice cream, but with just as much sugar means they’re taking out the delicious fat and leaving the insulin spiking sugar.

Side note: I just checked Dreyer’s website and noticed no “low fat” versions of their slow churned ice cream, interesting.

Cutting calories is extremely stupid

12 05 2012

Just an FYI, cutting calories/eating less used to be known by a different name: “semi starvation diet.”  It was changed for obvious reasons, but the name is no less true.  I have recently started a new self experiment with intermittent fasting to help me cut fat added during a recent muscle building phase.  This is not the same as cutting calories because I still eat as much calories as I like, but I can only eat between noon and 8pm.  Although I am still eating plenty, I still experience a good amount of hunger at night before I go to sleep and in the morning before noon.

I have only been experimenting with IMF for a week and I can already tell that I’d be going INSANE if I was trying to lose weight by cutting calories.  When hungry it’s almost impossible to not think about food.  My stomach is constantly growling and calling for my attention.  Based on my experience with minor hunger for only the past week, I can’t believe:

  • A, that anyone tries to lose weight by cutting back calories
  • B, that (stupid) people and the mass media still tell overweight people to lose weight by eating less
  • C, how hungry I am just on intermittent fasting
I can definitely believe:
  • Anyone trying to lose weight with a semi starvation diet is going to be miserable
  • They will also cave after trying for a while and eat themselves silly, probably putting on more weight than before

If not cutting calories, what should be doing?

In my experience, eating the right food means you don’t have to count calories and your body will maintain a good weight.  Throw in strength training and you’ll be unstoppable.  To find out about both, read and Four Hour Body, which will tell you everything you need to know.

In the past month I’ve lost about 6 pounds without counting any calories.  Of course, this is after I stopped drinking a gallon of milk a day, so take it with a grain of salt.  At my current rate of weight loss, about one pound per week, I will be where I want to be in a month or two.  Pics/video to come.


PS Remember you can follow along with my workouts/weight measurements here.


Only emulate the successful

21 04 2012

Something annoying to me: people taking advice from unsuccessful people.  For example, let’s imagine two people, Sarah and Bob.  We ask each of them: how can i get straight A’s?

Bob: “It’s easy.  You just need to listen in class, take a lot of notes, read through the books, and basically spend every waking moment studying.”

Me: “So Bob, is that how you get straight As?”

Bob: “No I’m not willing to put in the time so I don’t get straight A’s.”

Me: “Well how about you Sarah?”

Sarah: ” Well, in class I use a special note taking method called QEC.  It helps me understand rather than memorize.  Anything I don’t understand, I put a question mark by it and fill in the answer within a day or two, long before a test.  I have a very focused method of studying in which I set definite goals and shut off all outside communication so I don’t get distracted.  (… etc etc) I usually finish all my work within a few hours after school, then do whatever.  I do get straight A’s with this method.”

Most people are like Bob, they ‘know’ that you need to spend a lot of time studying to get A’s.  If you asked Bob for advice, he wouldn’t hesitate to tell you.  This annoys the crap out of me because why in the heck would you listen to Bob, who doesn’t have straight As but thinks he knows how to get them?  It should be obvious that Sarah is the one to listen to.

This started as a simple ranting blog post, but I came up with a useful tip.  Simply restructure your questioning to first ask if someone was successful at what you want to accomplish.  For example:

Did/do you get straight As?  Were you always a straight A student or did you adopt a strategy?  How can I get straight  As?

Have you been overweight, then lost that weight and kept it off?  How can I lose weight?

Were you ever skinny before putting on all that muscle?  How can I put on muscle?

You may have noticed another type of question I inserted into this new structure.  For lack of a better idea, I’ll call this the “natural talent eliminator” question.  You only want to take advice from people who have been in your situation and worked to get where you want to get.  It is not useful to ask someone who is naturally muscular how they put on muscle.  Nor is it useful to ask a genius how they study.  Nor is it useful to ask someone who is just naturally a stick figure how to lose weight (one reason behind such bad weight loss advice).

So in conclusion, when seeking advice or to learn something, consider using the following structure:

Did you achieve X? Are you just naturally talented/genetically lucky or did you research and develop a specific method to achieve X?  How can I achieve X?

Get an Alpha Site

20 03 2012

The Walking Dead spoiler alert.

I was pissed off while watching the latest episode of “The Walking Dead”.  They get overrun by zombies and had ZERO plans.  I mean, you have to figure that living, nay surviving, a few months into a freaking zombie apocalypse indicates they have some brains, but no.  They are overrun, they have no escape plan, they have no defenses, they have no place to meet up if they get separated.  Defenses take time to set up (I think they should have obtained a backhoe and dug a dry moat, since zombies can’t climb), but how long does it take to say to each other, let’s escape through this path if we are overrun and meet up 2 miles down this road?  About 5 seconds.

Anyway, the foolishness of “The Walking Dead” aside, I was reminded of a great idea from Stargate which I wanted to share: the Alpha site.  The Alpha site is a secondary base that’s separate from one’s main base.  It serves many purposes:

  • If you are tracked, you will not reveal your main base, but instead your secondary base.
  • If you suspect you have been infected with something, you can go into quarantine in your secondary base.
  • If your main base is taken out or in some way disabled, you have the infrastructure already installed at your Alpha site to take over command.
  • A place to send refugees.

Such a thing is probably not necessary in everyday life, unless you’re the POTUS, but we can learn a few lessons from the idea.

  • Typically, you don’t want to sell stuff out of your house on craigslist.  Saying something like, “buy my huge TV!  You just have to pick it up at 123 Fake Street!” makes you a huge target.
  • If you feel you are being followed or stalked, don’t go home, go to a neutral location (ie a friends house or perhaps Denny’s).
  • Have copies of your important documents somewhere that isn’t your house.  A safety deposit box, a safe at a family member’s house, etc.  Some extra cash never hurt anyone either.  You probably don’t have to go as far as having a weapons cache a la Burn Notice.
  • Have a designated spot to meet up with family in the event of a disaster that destroys your home.  Also a good idea to pick such a spot while on a trip, snowboarding, etc.