– Podcast series everyone should hear — This podcast kept coming up on my radar, so last week I dug in. It’s an amazing five-part series on the Khans, you know, Genghis Khan, who pretty much took over the world in the 1200’s and spread his seed so far and wide that most of us have some of his DNA in us. The history is stranger and more brutal than fiction, check it out: Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History: Wrath of the Khans I.
– Interview with a smart guy to check out — I’m a fan of journalist David Epstein. His book, The Sports Gene, is brilliant. He’s also picked fights with Malcolm Gladwell over the 10,000 hour rule, and he broke the Alberto Salazar is cheating story. For the cliffs notes of his book watch his TedTalk, “Are athletes really getting faster, better, stronger?”.
– Sweet ass rope, yo — For the past month I’ve been working these CrossRopes into my training. They’re fantastic. I have the speed rope, an intermediate weight, and then a one pound rope. My feeble tiny runner’s arms really feel it when I use the two heavier ropes. I’ve been in CrossFit classes where I take a massive time-hit because I suck at jumping rope, mores specifically double-unders. But, with just a little bit of jump rope practice a few times a week I’m quickly improving. A jump rope is an awesome, mobile piece of workout equipment that will help strengthen your lower legs (more on that very soon), even if you have a gym membership it’s a good idea to have one around.
– Recent long-form article I loved — This piece on Stephen Colbert from GQ magazine (Sept issue) stayed with me; my mother on the other hand was distracted by the style employed and hated it. Because Colbert played a character the entire nine years of his last show we never got know what he really thought about certain topics. In it he discusses how the loss of his father and two brothers when he was 10 affected his life.
– A book worth reading (or returning to) — Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style is a classic book on how to write (originally published in 1920). I know it’s good because the topic is dry, yet, sentences like this stay with me, “Do not dress words up by adding –ly to them, as though putting a hat on a horse.” Seriously, don’t put a hat on a horse when you write. I bought this pretty illustrated version mostly because the recent edition is appallingly bad, but also because I thought it might spruce up the topic. If you are a writer I highly suggest reading this one.
** Now go read something I got paid to write!