Nerd Corner #54

Pizza, Plutarch, and more!

Hi All!

Here in San Francisco, the skies have been so blue and fog-free during the days that I wanted to share them with you. Have an awesome week!

What I am reading 📚

A couple of weeks ago I realized that I was slipping with my reading habit so I decided to get back on track and read at least 45 minutes every day.  I decided to read first thing in the morning (right after my daily writing session) and the results have been surprising! I’ve managed to get through almost two books in less than 10 days. 

Consistency, showing up every day is the key to achieve most things you want!

One of the books I just read is “How to Be a Leader”. It's a collection of three essays written by Plutarch in which he distills his advice on being a good politician.

The first one “To an uneducated Leader” surprised me because a lot of the advice Plutarch gives to young politicians transcends politics and can be easily used any time:

Those who govern must first achieve governance of themselves, straighten out their souls, and set their character aright, and then they should assimilate their subjects to themselves. 

In the second one, “How to be a good leader”, Plutarch revisits his experience as a politician and details the steps he believed were the correct ones to become a great public servant. Above all, he believed that the best way to learn about politics was to serve as the apprentice of an experienced leader who would act as a mentor and help hone their abilities.

The third one, “Should an old man engage in politics?” is devoted to arguing that old and experienced politicians shouldn’t retire but remain at the service of their people guiding and mentoring younger politicians but always on the sidelines, never in the spotlight. 

This is great advice, but that our current politicians haven’t read. For example, here in the USA, on both sides of the aisle, the spotlight is currently taken by very old politicians and I can’t but wonder if it would be better to put a limit on the maximum age to hold office. Perhaps these experienced leaders should take a mentoring role and pave the way for the younger generations.

Nerd Corner 🤓

I recently watched “The Bit Player” a documentary that tells the story of Claude Shannon, the father of Information Theory. The film is entertaining and sheds light on Shannon’s wide and wild interests, ranging from genetics, gambling, and the science of juggling but falls short of portraying him as one of the most (as in top 3) important scientists of our era. 

It might have something to do with his nonchalant character and the fact that after publishing his seminal work on Information Theory he moved on to other interests, but I felt that the book on which the documentary is partly based, "A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age” by Jimmy Soni and Rob Goodman (their other biography “Rome’s Last Citizen” is a must-read) drove the point home much better. 

You might not know about him, but the fact that I was able to type these words, send them through an email so you can read them halfway across the world on another digital screen, is all thanks to Shannon and his theories of communication.

Cool Finds 🤯

  • I can’t stop watching Bruce Lee playing ping-pong with nunchucks. (If true) this is perhaps the greatest example of the amazing feats that humans are capable of.

  • This Paris Review article (thanks Dad for sharing!) tells the story of how Neapolitan cuisine spread around the world. Needless to say, by the time I finished reading it I was craving lots of pizza 🤤.

  • I’m becoming obsessed with running and have been trying to understand what shoes are best for running long distances. I found this Runnersworld article on “barefoot” running very enlightening. 

I have questions for you! 😎

Are you a runner? What’s your experience with shoes, have you tried “minimalist” running shoes?

Hit the reply button to this email and tell me more!

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Until next week,