Alberto's weekly email: fiction and drip coffee ☕️!


Hi All!

What I am reading 📚

For a change, I am trying to include more fiction into my reading. Why? Because there’s a lot we can learn from a novel. Many truths are hidden in plain sight. In fact, Taleb has a very nice way of putting it, “fiction is a certain packaging of the truth, or higher truths. Indeed I find that there is more truth in Proust, albeit it is officially fictional, than in the babbling analyses of the New York Times that give us the illusions of understanding what’s going on”.

I’ve been reading “The Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” and I’m having a blast. It is very funny and easy to read and has some cool nuggets like this one: “Infinity itself looks flat and uninteresting. Looking up into the night sky is looking into infinity – distance is incomprehensible and therefore meaningless”.

Nerd Corner 🤓

It turns out that there exists such a thing as a good “drip coffee” (American style coffee). Sort of 🤪.

Drip coffee is probably the most common brewing method in the USA. The coffee is brewed in an automated machine that slowly drips hot water over ground coffee for about 10 minutes. The issue with this method is that 99.9% of the time what you get is not really coffee but some sort of brown water with a very bad taste. At least that’s been my experience.

This has been an problem for me. In the mornings I tend to drink a big cup of black coffee during my commute and making around 5 double-shot Espressos seems overkill. So I have been on a quest to find a decent cup that doesn’t take too much effort to make just after waking up 😴.

I’ve experienced with a french press. I’ve made Americanos (just water down a couple of Espresso shots). But after a while I seem to get tired of the flavor. Recently though I’ve been experimenting with a Chemex. The Chemex brews “pour over” coffee. This is pretty much the same method used by a drip machine. You pour some hot water over coffee grounds sitting in a paper filter. After some fine-tuning of the grind (I’ve settled for a medium-coarse grind), the results are pretty consistent: I get a very light and smooth brew that takes roughly 5 minutes to make!

If you want to try something similar and only have access to a drip machine, check out these list of tips to improve your brew ☕️.

Also interesting 🤯

  • Joe Rogan interviewed Bernie Sanders who’s running for president again. This is as unbiased information as you can get, or as one commentator said, “At this point Joe Rogan does more for democracy than CNN, MSNBC and Fox News put together.” I just hope more candidates get to appear on his podcast before the 2020 elections 🎙.

  • In a recent podcast, Ramit Sethi makes a very compelling comparison between healthy food habits and financial habits 💰.

  • Deepfakes are scary and impressive at the same time. See this video of a guy swapping Leonardo DiCaprio’s face by his in a movie to see what I’m talking about 🙀.

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Have a great week!