Conversations that Changed Everything

Favorite quotations, etc.
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fiby41
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by fiby41 » Sun Jul 19, 2015 7:16 am

jennypenny wrote:I don't do real conversations, but a few here have really challenged my views and/or gotten under my skin ...

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5044 (and a couple others about charity)
Is Charity Immoral?: viewtopic.php?f=20&t=3975

oldbeyond
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by oldbeyond » Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:40 pm

Most of the paradigm shifts in my thinking have taken place after I've discovered new written material in one form or another(most often I found the basic idea on blogs/forums, and then turned to books for the specifics and subtleties). Perhaps this is explained by introversion. Still, a few sea changes were due to conversations.

- A rather pedestrian discussion about recent political events with a friend suddenly made me realize that my religious adherence to extreme libertarianism, that I hid from other people due to shyness, perhaps wasn't the Truth and had to be tested against what I could observe from the world around me. After this, I've always been attempting to tear down platonic constructs, rather than trying to hide in them(I should say that I'm not dismissing all forms of libertarianism, simply the extremely theoretical and idealistic anarcho-capitalist ones).

- A series of conversations with a bohemian friend of mine in college finally made me realize that not only wasn't he alarmed by his failure to engage in upper middle class status-seeking behaviour, he actually took pride in it! And this without embracing some form of reactionary counter culture - he simply created his own path in life. I'll never be as free as him, mentally, but I'll never give up trying to be free.

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Ego
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by Ego » Mon Jul 20, 2015 6:34 pm

oldbeyond wrote:A rather pedestrian discussion about recent political events with a friend suddenly made me realize that my religious adherence to extreme libertarianism, that I hid from other people due to shyness, perhaps wasn't the Truth and had to be tested against what I could observe from the world around me. After this, I've always been attempting to tear down platonic constructs, rather than trying to hide in them(I should say that I'm not dismissing all forms of libertarianism, simply the extremely theoretical and idealistic anarcho-capitalist ones).
You are not alone in your preference falsifications. There are times when I believe it is the most damaging thing we can do to one another.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Preference_falsification

One of the reasons conversations here are better than elsewhere is because FU money buys Alice freedom from having to manage Bob's perception of her.

http://206hwf3fj4w52u3br03fi242.wpengin ... image1.jpg

Alice can do the thing most critical for a good conversation. She can speak her mind. She can argue as if she is right and listen as if she is wrong.

7Wannabe5
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Jul 20, 2015 7:21 pm

Alice doesn't need money to do that. She just needs brass in pocket.

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fiby41
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by fiby41 » Tue Jul 21, 2015 6:28 am

jacob wrote:Every job-interview I've ever had (not counting phone interviews)
So akin to all the people who say "I am completely debt free, except for the the mortgage."

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Ego
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by Ego » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:26 am

Ego wrote: Reminds me of this quote from Robert Twigger.

We are lead to believe that all 'top jobs' are occupied by smart people. But really smart people don't have jobs.I mean- why would they? Of course at times they work very hard. But this work is like the work you do on a hobby that really absorbs you.

And those 'really smart' people don't often seem so very smart when you meet them, rather they appear enthusiastic.
Twigger is also the guy who wrote that opening paragraph of the story about polymaths in Aeon that I love....

https://aeon.co/essays/we-live-in-a-one ... a-polymath

I travelled with Bedouin in the Western Desert of Egypt. When we got a puncture, they used tape and an old inner tube to suck air from three tyres to inflate a fourth. It was the cook who suggested the idea; maybe he was used to making food designed for a few go further. Far from expressing shame at having no pump, they told me that carrying too many tools is the sign of a weak man; it makes him lazy. The real master has no tools at all, only a limitless capacity to improvise with what is to hand. The more fields of knowledge you cover, the greater your resources for improvisation.

He has a new book coming soon that fits well with ERE.

Micromastery:Learn Small, Learn Fast, and Find the Hidden Path to Happiness
https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/297979/micromastery/

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by jacob » Sat Aug 24, 2019 8:34 am

Ego wrote:
Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:26 am
Micromastery:Learn Small, Learn Fast, and Find the Hidden Path to Happiness
https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/297979/micromastery/
I just finished it. It goes well with chapters 4+5 in the ERE book. If I were to republish, I'd add it to the bibliography, so I recommend it. The first half is a really good defense of the polymath/renaissance orientation. The second half is a bucket list of various micromasteries. If I were to summarize a micromastery, it would be something that's easy extremely narrow in scope and that impresses other people---important for motivation---after putting in ~100 hours of practice.

The idea here is that all these micromasteries make us creative and perhaps serve as a starting point to mesomastery(SP?) or macromastery.

I think where I disagree a bit is the "micro" part. That's probably because I personally favor/advocate for mesomastery, i.e. instead of spending 5000 hours on 50 micromasteries, I prefer 1000 hours on 5 different things instead. E.g. one example in the book is to make a perfectly square block of wood. In woodworking "squaring boards" is indeed fundamental and takes a few 10 hour sessions to learn. But spend 1000 hours and you'll be dovetailing, dadoing, and making furniture of your own design.

Another example in the book is swinging a sword so it sings. That's also a visible (audible) skill that takes ~100 hours to learn, but in and of itself it is not useful. A sword only sings when the edge is aligned with the swing which is crucial for clean cuts. Being able to move and cut takes thousands of hours, but I think this is perhaps more useful to gain that level of understanding.

I am perhaps more focused on whether something is useful to learn something and less focused on whether it's fun or an impressive trick in a social context. Underrating the social aspect of usefulness is perhaps to my detriment. Maybe I should learn to ride a unicycle.

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Stahlmann
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by Stahlmann » Sat Aug 24, 2019 9:00 am

1) various talk with professionals who spend 10 yrs+ in given field and I thought that I grasped something before (usually) paying them for visit/convo (yes, I know this funny curve of Dun..-Krun..., I can't have space in my mind for exact name for every factoid, sorry)

so I mean medical profs, PhDs at uni, older guys in my industry and so on.

2) if we count "education" (as mindless remembering facts and then being tested by mindless repetition) or reading posts of some smart people online as possible convo I would choose:

in school they said
"the fact you gonna change jobs more than last generation"

on forum (paraphrased/changed/mixed to my current understanding of the world):
,,first gonna be outsourced jobs sent by mail/fax/internet, then something which can be sent physically, then we gonna have mayhem or you can sleep calmly if you're med professional or good blue collar worker (as long as you haven't hurt your back by 2050)"

@jacob
interesting observation.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Aug 26, 2019 1:47 pm

jacob wrote:I think where I disagree a bit is the "micro" part. That's probably because I personally favor/advocate for mesomastery, i.e. instead of spending 5000 hours on 50 micromasteries, I prefer 1000 hours on 5 different things instead...

...I am perhaps more focused on whether something is useful to learn something and less focused on whether it's fun or an impressive trick in a social context. Underrating the social aspect of usefulness is perhaps to my detriment. Maybe I should learn to ride a unicycle.
lol- My take on the book is that I very much like the "micro" as well as the general philosophy and practice recommended by the book, but Twigger describes himself as somebody whose primary learning mode is "by doing" , which is at best my secondary mode, so some of his specific suggestions or descriptions either didn't serve to pique my interest or were a bit lost in translation. So, I felt compelled to reread some of Taleb's take on reading vs." tinkering", and came to conclusion that "versus" is not the functional perspective.

I also happen to be reading the autobiography of Benjamin Franklin and I could definitely see some examples of the benefits of micro-mastery. For instance, Franklin taught himself how to swim by reading a then popular book on the topic, "The Art of Swimming", and made up some of his own tricks, and showing off this skill served to help him make social connections in a new location. He also made use of his minor skill in poetry writing to construct rhymes that helped him remember how to do other completely unrelated mechanical tasks.

According to back of envelope calculation, I might have enough life-energy hours left to allow me to make a bucket-list of 500 micro-masteries, whereas I could likely only "afford" 50 meso-masteries, so that is part of the appeal for externally aging ENTP me. Secondary to this calculation was notion that if goal focus of ERE is skill-mastery towards Renaissance-like lifestyle (as opposed to SWR minimization) and/or definition of freedom is something like:
..relearning how to give yourself permission to be interested and engaged...in anything. - "Micromasteries" - Twigger
Trial and error is freedom...Avoidance of boredom is the only worthy mode of action. Life otherwise is not worth living.-"Antifragile" - Taleb
Then freedom could be measured in something like potential for flow towards mastery with monetary concerns secondary to ability to achieve access to challenging new learning curve in alignment with druthers.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by jennypenny » Mon Aug 26, 2019 2:55 pm

I liked Twigger's micromastery idea because it gives permission to limit the scope, which is helpful if you're the kind of person who takes on too much or procrastinates because a task seems too daunting. 'Learn to cook' and learn to garden' are big, somewhat nebulous goals but 'learn to cook an omelette' and 'learn to grow tomatoes' are much more manageable.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by BMF1102 » Tue Aug 27, 2019 1:13 pm

I was working at a Plumbing company right out of High School about a year or so in I had a brief conversation with my boss about how me and my partner thought it was unfair that he let so and so take time off when they had no vaca time available but did not let another guy who had vaca time.

Boss - "It's none of your fucking business who I let take time off or how I run my business, if you do not like it you are welcome to leave."

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Bankai
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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by Bankai » Tue Aug 27, 2019 3:39 pm

Did you?

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Tue Aug 27, 2019 7:08 pm

jennypenny wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 2:55 pm
I liked Twigger's micromastery idea...
Thanks to the numerous mentions around the boards I picked this book up today! Looking forward to reading it. Is much of it immediately actionable?

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by BMF1102 » Tue Aug 27, 2019 8:26 pm

Bankai - No I did not, I simply had a solid understanding of my importance and role at the company and any company for that matter. Basically nobody gives a shit about your feelings,as an employee you are simply a tool and some tools are more useful than others.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by jacob » Sun Sep 22, 2019 1:07 pm

2Birds1Stone wrote:
Tue Aug 27, 2019 7:08 pm
Is much of it immediately actionable?
Yes, it's intended that way.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Sun Sep 22, 2019 3:04 pm

Thanks Jacob, I finished it and enjoyed it very much. Reading Atomic Habits now. Much gratitude to the folks here for awesome book recommendations.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by jennypenny » Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:29 am

I was out walking our new rescue pup today and ran into a neighbor I hadn't seen in a while (our girls went to school together but are grown and gone now). She said her husband, who is 62yo and a marathon runner/health nut, retired last December and then found out in February he had double hit lymphoma. He's doing ok after a monstrous year of treatments but the prognosis is never good with that type of lymphoma. He's lucky he's walking again because of the tumors in his bones but he'll never run again.

For some reason this news hit me hard. Maybe it's the time of year -- I had my first two melanoma plucked off in fall '12 -- or maybe it's just that I've been stuck in the weeds for a while and needed to hear something like this to (re)gain some clarity and refocus my energy. It's time for me to shed the last of the dead weight in my life and get back to working my way through my bucket list. My list is (sadly?) full of things I want to learn and skills I want to master more than trips and other traditional bucket list stuff. I'm happiest when I'm chewing on a bone.

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Re: Conversations that Changed Everything

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Thu Oct 17, 2019 1:04 pm

@jennypenny:

My 79 year old multi-millionaire friend who has always been fitness/health nut also now has bone cancer. Meanwhile, my 79 year old mother who never exercises and eats way more than her recommended allowance of cake is recovering well from her hip replacement surgery. It's either luck of the draw or complete avoidance of stress. Anyways, it just simply is not the case that health and wealth maintenance are more than nominally analogous. Physical fitness, obviously, is another matter.

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