The End of the Age of Heroes

With the passing of the years we see also the passing of our heroes: the giants among us who stand out against the backdrop of history and who stood for and symbolized ideals which most of us only think or talk about in the abstract. People like Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King Jr., Mohandas Gandhi....

3 Ridiculous Political Debates with Obvious Answers

Here are some obvious points to make about utterly ridiculous political arguments that I still occasionally hear. No thinking person should make these arguments if they at all value logic in decision making (So this doesn’t apply to most actual politicians). If you are making any of the arguments addressed here, stop immediately and either rethink...

Veteran’s Day in China
Veteran’s Day in China

China failed this round

Veteran’s Day, 2013 Veteran’s Day has always been an holiday that I have respected. When I was young, it was because of my family’s military background as well as the fact that I was simply a patriotic kid. I joined the military shortly before September 11, 2001, so every Veteran’s Day after that took on...

Cry, Baby
Cry, Baby

or: Why I Cry at Terrible Movies

The number one sign that I may be a bit emotionally withheld is that I cry at movies. Not just at legitimate movies that merit crying at, like The Lion King or Beasts of the Southern Wild. No, I cry at those movies AND terrible movies which have no redeeming qualities whatsoever, including their poorly...

Stationary Wandering

Guest post by: Ain Bailey She makes lists of fantastic things. Scrawls improbabilities on crisp sheets of unlined white paper, or yellow tablets, creased and lined. It doesn’t matter which, she is merely daydreaming. Nonchalantly she admires the slant of her letters or the swirls of her words, downplaying the concepts behind them. She focuses...

Don’t Watch Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D
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  • October 17, 2013

If you want to get your eyes raped, go watch Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. In a not unpredictable maneuver, Marvel is attempting to capitalize on their big screen success by expanding their media empire onto the small screen. In this case by taking a passé organization from the Marvel Comic universe, S.H.I.E.L.D., and creating a...

You Don’t Know How to Fix Yourself

The doctor will see you now. And ruin your life.

Recently, a coach friend of mine for whom I have a lot of respect promoted an article about IT Band syndrome. This is an injury that I know is quite common amongst runners and I am pretty sure I have flirted with it myself in the past. At first I was excited to have another...

Zennis

  If you’ve read any of my previous posts, and let’s be honest, there aren’t many of you, you’ll recall a post about a 10-K.  In a nutshell, I compared life planning to a government mandated corporate fiduciary responsibility and transparency document for investors. In retrospect, that analogy may have targeted a niche audience that...

Pain, in 6 Easy Steps
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  • September 26, 2013

Ok, so I already described the situation. To recap, I’m in Costa Rica near a beach and I’ve been wanting to get back in shape for a while, so I started a new exercise program. Because moderation is an obvious sign of weakness and/or mental health depending on who you ask, I decided to go...

I Love Push-Ups and So Should You. Part I
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  • September 25, 2013

Remember how I love pull-ups? As it turns out, I also love to do push-ups. As with the pull-up, I would evaluate my ability as (well) above average and I’m willing to bet that you are pretty miserable at them. I’m going to follow the same general format as the pull-ups post, so let’s start...

Roving Packs of Dogs

On the ever growing list of threats to my health and safety, I now add roving packs of dogs. This is the first addition since dengue fever bearing mosquitoes, added about a week ago. The backstory is this: inspired in part by Movematt, I decided that one of my goals during my time in Costa...

Sci-Fi for the Win

Science fiction has never been easy to pull off in movies.  In some ways it is harder than fantasy.  While often wondrous to the point of the absurd, its roots are usually firmly grounded in the physics and reality we know and love(?).  I make a distinction between the venerable histories which include The Day...

I Love Pull-ups and So Should You. Part I.

This is my second attempt to write about pull-ups; Katy Perry rudely interrupted my last attempt (a transgression for which I still have not forgiven her). Anyway, I have to start by admitting that I love pull-ups. Seriously. It is likely my most favorite training exercise. Well, the pull-up and all of its variations, to...

The Greatest Show You Never Watched
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  • September 11, 2013

Well let’s get right into it, shall we? In the world of sitcoms, only one show has ever managed to cross the uncanny valley that bridges shows with laugh tracks and shows with truly humorous content. In pretty much all other sitcoms, the laugh track is too often used to remind people that what they...

Wanderlust – Destination: Costa Rica
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  • September 5, 2013

I hate the winter, so I’m moving to Costa Rica. Well, there are other reasons, but chief among them is the fact that any weather which requires me to wear long sleeves makes me irritable. Other reasons include: the lower cost of living (which will be important since I’m in the start-up phase of beginning...

LG v. KP

I was in the middle of writing a post about pull-ups, but I have been distracted by Youtube. In an attempt to simply find some music to play while I wrote, I couldn’t stop myself from clicking to watch the new Lady Gaga video that was prominently displayed on the Youtube homepage. First of all,...

Shut Up and Talk

  “So are you guys celebrities or something?” At the moment I ask this question we’ve been sitting at cruising altitude for about 15 minutes in the crowded American Airlines flight. The 2 seats beside my exit row window seat are occupied by two pretty young women. They have been approached twice by the stewardess...

The Tao of Ashton

  Guest post by Matt Huttner The stage is set. We are at the Teen Choice Awards, which, if I remember my classics, Dante referred to as the 6th Layer of Hell, and Ashton Kutcher steps up to the plate to deliver what will undoubtedly be absolute drivel. This is the star of such cinematic...

Your Next 10-K

    I recently graduated from business school.  Like any good education, it teaches you more about what you DON’T know than what you do. Ultimately it’s merely enabled me to ask more interesting questions. Now, more “interesting” is in the eye of the beholder, but just like learning a new language, education, especially one...

God
God

  As a younger man, I was considerably more prone to philosophical waxing in my writing than I am now. Though it is often embarrassing (usually when I’m confronted with horrifically trite high school era poetry) every now and then I find something that surprises me with its competence. What follows is one such example....

Suffer No Mediocre Coffee

Recently I became aware of some serious deficiencies in my life regarding coffee. Not too long ago I was satisfied with my coffee consumption as I thought I was doing things the right way: get the dark roast and drink it black. This made sense to me as I personally prefer both my coffee and...

Your Summer in Movies

Here are a few short intros to just a few of the films you can expect from Hollywood this summer. I know, the summer is half over already, but shut up. Don’t act like you’ve seen ALL the summer movies already. And there are plenty more coming out before it’s over. So you’re welcome. Thor: The...

Read: Blade of Tyshalle and Heroes Die

If you like your books uncompromising, with equal parts philosophy, imagination, wit, humor, sarcasm, epic battles, great characters, and gut punching drama, stop reading and buy/download these two books.   If you need more convincing, read on.     Many authors have tried to do the anti-hero “thing”, Moorcock’s Elric saga (pic above) being one of...

An Open Letter to the Special Effects Driven Film

Dear [insert CGI driven movie title here], I just watched Pacific Rim, and overall I enjoyed it. For all its flaws and illogic it was generally fun to watch and engaging enough to keep me interested the whole way through. However, despite my general enjoyment, Pacific Rim still fell into some of the same traps...

Play: The Last of Us

How the Best Zombie Movie of the Last Decade Could be a Video Game Guest post by Ryan Ring There is hope in video games, and I have seen it in one of the most bleak and hopeless places imaginable; no, not Detroit, but rather post-Apocalyptic America as depicted in The Last of Us.  A...

Why You Should Keep an Airplane Journal

When I was 21 years old I realized something about myself: I didn’t have what it took to keep a journal. Not the traditional kind of journal, anyway: the kind where most nights you open it up and write something about your day and your state of mind. I had tried before, and failed. I might...

You want to fix leaks? Change the Plumbing.

It seems we have had a deluge of intelligence scandals over the past few years, Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden currently being the most dramatic and visible.  For those of you who actively don’t pay attention to these things, Private Manning dumped hundreds of thousands of pieces of classified and sensitive material to the website...

I Want my FYMTV, Pt 2

So I’ve been bashing a lot of shows lately, and I feel like I should switch gears a bit to talk about why I do it. Refocusing on the FYMPlanet mission is probably in order here: the goal is not just to slam mediocre shows or to try to shame people into not watching their favorite guilty pleasure....

Don’t Watch: Dexter

So now that we’ve established that The Walking Dead is crap, let’s move on to another fan favorite. Dexter, since its 2006 inception, has been breaking Showtime records and entertaining millions of underdeveloped minds with its anticlimactic progression and willfully stagnant main character. Let’s explore some of the elements that make this show not worth...

Check out World War Z

So you can’t have a summer without a disaster movie.  The warmer months drive Hollywood a little mad and are littered with cinema fodder that rain down like the asteroids and comets caused by aliens/gods/global warming and whatever other swords of Damocles hang over humanity’s head.  All of them are horrible. Yes, including Armageddon though...

Paleo is for Chumps

Seriously. Paleo is stupid, quit talking about it. Quit “being Paleo,” whatever the hell that means anyway; quite making “Paleo brownies” and quit getting sucked into the ever-stranger world of Paleo. Am I supposed to be capitalizing that word, “Paleo?” What’s the standard convention? You know what, I don’t even care. Paleo is not worth...

Engineering The Animal Kingdom

For those of you who haven’t been paying attention, the future is here. In so many ways, our lives are changing and being enabled by technology. Google Voice (Google’s version of Siri) is so accurate at answering simple questions that it leaves me shaking my head and smiling, even after months of using it. Just...

Above and Beyond
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  • June 16, 2013

What feels like a lifetime ago, I was a height safety and rescue trainer for a German safety equipment manufacturer in China. A friend of a friend helped get me the job, for which my only qualifications were that I spoke decent Chinese and was of sound mind and body. To teach me…well, everything about...

Now I saw it.  Hope you don’t.

So my wife and I saw Now You See Me last week… and I’m still thinking about it.  Oh no, not because it was thought provoking, almost the polar opposite.  I think I was noodling what exactly it was that bothered me about it, and I think I have it. This movie is the perfect...

Don’t Watch: The Walking Dead

*Can they be called spoilers if the show is already rotten? If so, they’re ahead* The Walking Dead is a profoundly mediocre show. It’s greatest strength is that it manages to keep otherwise rational people watching it, long after it has proven itself not worth their time. Commenter Nial said it best in his comment...

Sarutobi Parkour

What feels like a lifetime ago, I was a parkour instructor in Beijing, China. I was definitely the first foreigner to teach parkour there, but I may have been the first period. Back in 2009, when I started, there wasn’t anyone else teaching formal parkour classes, and there were only a few informal groups practicing...

PAJERO!
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  • June 6, 2013

I’m going to step out of my wheelhouse a bit and talk about something that has nothing to do with movement. Well, maybe a little bit, but not in the fitness sense. Regardless, the real motivation was finding this little gem I wrote a few years ago to sell my truck as I was going...

Aging, Body Odor, Sunburn and a Flippant Disrespect for Earth’s Gravity
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  • June 6, 2013

So, last weekend was my birthday.  No big deal.  Really.  In fact, I’m old enough now that it actually requires effort to remember the exact number of times I’ve circled the sun.  This is no doubt due to the lack of any significant age milestones in between 25 and 40.  Twenty-one was uneventful because I...

C’est la Visa
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  • June 2, 2013

When I first went to China, it was on a tourism visa which lasted for 3 months.  This was in the weeks following the Olympics, when visa regulations were just beginning to ease slightly.  I arrived unsure of what I would do at the end of those three months, or even of what the rules...

The Badass Gardener

The gentleman you see here in this picture is crossing between a large ledge and the landing of a flight of stairs up to the second floor. Each floor in this building is a bit taller than standard height, so he is probably a solid 6 meters above the ground below. Every day he can...

Read: Daemon

I read a lot. I pretty much have to read before I go to bed or I’ll just lie awake and stare at the ceiling even if it’s 3 in the morning. Even if it’s just a page or a few paragraphs, I find it very difficult to pass out without reading something. Kind of...

Star Trek: Into Darkness Or The Remake Dilemma and why this may be good for Star Wars

  !:Warning:! Spoilers ahead – no major plot points, but a character is revealed (if you haven’t already figured it out by the trailers alone). Let’s start with the good stuff.  Star Trek: Into Darkness is a looker.  It’s one of the best produced/realized sci-fi worlds that I’ve seen in recent memory.  There are some...

I Want my FYMTV

I won’t say that TV is getting better. Thanks to the spew of reality TV programming that dominates much of the airwaves these days, TV is more likely, on average, getting worse. However, the number of very good shows, while not quite balancing out all the crap, IS growing at an unprecedented rate. A discerning...

Last Night Aikido Saved My Life

I’ve been training martial arts for most of my life. I’ve done karate, jujitsu, Brazilian jujitsu, aikido, and some tai chi chuan. Despite all that (or maybe because of it) I’ve only been in one real fight in my life. Well, I guess it depends on your definition of a fight. I reflexively punched a younger kid in the...

Training for the apocalypse: Week 0
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  • May 12, 2013

The Muscle-Up So, for better or for worse (only time will tell) I have volunteered to be the guinea pig for my fellow FYMP master, Move Matt. This will not be a tale of dramatic triumph over adversity or obesity – this isn’t The Biggest Loser. No.  I’m a 30+ year old who has been a...

Working Out Sucks.

Working out sucks.  Stop doing it.  Seriously. That might sound like some odd advice from the section of FYMP that professes to be the physical well-being side of the house, but those three words are essential to be able to understand every blog post that comes after this. In the cartoon above, Calvin is confused...

Public Service Announcement

  These random popular things are mediocre; you should not like them as much as you do. 1. The Big Bang Theory (the show… not the actual theory) 2. Tom Clancy books (yes, all of them) 3. Shameless 4. Taken 5. Sons of Anarchy 6. Dan Brown books (yes, all of them) 7. The Dark Knight...

Running In Pants, Pt 2

When was the last time you ran?  I’m willing to bet that whether or not the answer is last night or last year or even last leap year, the circumstances were similar:  You were wearing running clothes, running shoes, and were at a running venue of your choosing.  Continuing with my assumptions, you were there...

Running In Pants

It’s 35 degree Celsius and 95% humidity in Malaysian Borneo.  I’m hungover and have a belly full of nothing but coffee.  I’m wearing long pants.  It’s time to run. …. I’ve been desperately searching for some inspiration to kick start my first FYMP post and I think I finally found it.  I’m just going to...

Ask the right questions… get better answers

How society asks the wrong questions of our correctional system You break the law.  You go to jail.  Then what? Well,“Welcome Home!”, because more than likely you’ll be back again and again to enjoy the best creature comforts and social bum etiquette lessons public money can buy. It’s more akin to a social experiment than...

You Don’t Have to be a Tool to Use One

We’ve all heard it before. Sanctimonious friends telling us how much their formerly pathetic lives have improved since they got rid of Facebook and its evil lure of artificially sustained acquaintanceship. The perceived disservice done to True Friendship™ is an oft cited reason for dumping the service, e.g. “maintaining friendships takes more than ‘liking’ a...

Watch: Attack the Block

Imagine a film that will both highlight socioeconomic issues in low income UK housing projects, and also tell the story of adolescent hooligans thwarting an alien invasion. This sounds like the first line of an overambitious final project proposal by a first year film student who will end up actually making a four minute animated...