Nikoley’s Sunday Scribbles
— Anything, not everything, but lots in-between | Pratamnak Hill, Jomtien-Pattaya, Thailand | March 26, 2023 Banking meltdowns; How Trump got pawned on the Covid response; For the love of Thai pork; Kitchen tip for leftovers storage; Member section (AI stuff) Banking meltdowns Are we at the stage where everything is half false, or is…Read More
Eat The Elephant
— You know how it's done
Ever since I came up with the sort of slogan "Prosper Anyway" in the midst of the Covidiocy and began a series along those lines, I've yet to be hyper-satisfied with it.
... Too...uh, Mr. Spok.
"Live long and prosper."
Thanks; yea, no shit. You too.
Recently—as in, over the last several months—some life events descended upon me...mostly having to do with the Girl I'd been estranged from for some additional months beyond that.
To make a long and tedious story short, she made quite a batch of pickles. What she did specifically isn't important. It amounts to a bunch of stupid shit a 29-year-old single mom—who grew up dirt poor in a rural Thai village and never saw sound financial management in her life—might do. This is beyond paycheck to paycheck. It's baht in the pocket and no baht in the pocket, 50/50.
I knew shit was up; rather than tell me all about it and ask for help, she pretended all was hunky, asking only for little bits of money here and there. She knew my own finances weren't great owing to huge lost income because of Covidiocy, and having dumped so much into their house and car (believing things would recover rather than persist for well over 2 years).
A point came, and she had to clue me in or, serious shit befalls. What I had not been aware of is that her ex-husband, dad of Chili and Wasabi, had been helping out with things a lot more than I knew. And he died just about a year ago at 45, liver cancer. Naturally, the provisions he'd made went to his current wife and child.
Duh on me, didn't really see any of that coming, and it was only in retrospect I see how things unraveled.
That's the gist of it. The point is, what did I do once I knew and understood the full extent of the problem(s)? Confronting massive problems such as she'd created, combined with my rather limited means, put me in a situation of feeling like a business owner way back with 30 employees and a $150k payroll and sales commissions to make...plus rent on four office locations.
I'd need to business-science this.
I'd need to eat an elephant.
I'm not yet at the end of the story, but getting this far makes for a good story with lots of insights. Progress is exceptional.
I'm entering a phase of far more content for Members. The Sunday Scribbles that's generally for public consumption now has a Member's section. I posted about what's really behind Jamie Lee Curtis disrespecting her Oscar award. In draft, I have a post about the Andrew Tate saga (what's important about it); and of extreme importance for everyone's future, a post on Artificial Intelligence and the astounding chat boxes, such as ChatGPT 4.0, with whom I have natural conversations in complex social and philosophical contexts that are far superior to any human conversation I've ever had in terms of an exchange of knowledge and understanding (Why? I solidly answer that.). You'll want to get ahead of the AI Revolution that will change everything, and there's no doubt about that. Every. Person. On. Earth.
Nikoley’s Sunday Scribbles
— Anything, not everything, but lots in-between | March 19, 2023 Trump arrest; Haircut with a 2-letter, 1-word dismissal; Feminism is over; James O’Keefe is in the house; AI Luddites; Member Section (AI stuff) Trump arrest Let’s get this one out-of-the-way right off. Supposed to happen in a coupla daze. Of course, it’s bullshit. But,…Read More
Understanding the Jamie Lee Curtis Oscar Aftermath in Clown-World-Speak
— I guarantee a deep understanding that is widely applicable to all clown-world phenomena
I have understood precisely what's going on here for quite some time.
... Since sometime in 2018, so 5 years ago or nearly so, and my oh my has it made a difference. Searching my 5000+ post archives (and I can search the raw data for specific words or phrases, so I can't miss) I never blogged about it until 2021. I'm not sure why, exactly, given its supreme importance in a way that everything becomes really clear and locks right into place.
Perhaps it was that I was going through divorce at the time, not blogging much about anything very often. Doing a lot of stupid stuff, actually, cooped up as I was in the mountains alone in a big house for two winters...
This phenomenon goes back a really long time and its most famous explicit use was in the early 1900s with the Bolshevik Revolution; how they were able to amass such a following so quickly and have that following be unabashedly loyal—up to and including a willingness to look completely crazy and stupid while putting on a smile.
Just like that photo, above...and whaddya wanna bet there were those in attendance seal-clapping to that ridiculous spectacle?
So the narrative goes something like this: After 4 decades and 80 appearances in film and TV, with some really notable performances—she's a good actress—she gets her very first nomination and her very first win at the same time. It's for a supporting role in a film where also, a bunch of firsts for Asians.
So the Asian thing is what it is...I never got the enthrallment over Hidden Dragon, or whatever it was that was dancing. Or something. Racism against Asians has been in the news lately so gotta get woke about that, I guess.
But why Jamie Lee Curtis...? I haven't seen the film, so I'm just wondering if it was truly a great performance, or is something else in play? In the aftermath of getting that award...yep...sure enough. There it is, right on cue. I'll cover that below.
Here's the thing. Once you've got the technique down pat, you'll never fail to detect it in play anywhere, from the macro down to the micro, such as in company or institutional politics.
You'll also understand, if you're an honest person with some pride in yourself...someone who can feel genuine shame...how you can never participate and cash in the way others do.
It's not in you...and it's not so much that 'you're better than that;' it's that you're simply not that, at all. You're fully human...
The Member posts coming cover a lot more ground. One was nearly ready to go today, and then I saw this in the news, remembered I had not really blogged about this phenomenon and its power in understanding what the fuck is really going on, so this moved out front. That post concerns making a no-shit, whole life change and how to go about it. You might avoid costly mistakes.
There's a post covering the Andrew Tate saga in draft. There is important stuff for Members to take note of. I've dug deep there.
I'm also doing heavy research and practice with AI, which is taking a lot of time. What I'm experiencing is nothing short of...as a longtime friend of mine just wrote in an email, "This is definitely a major 'all of humanity' shift." That will be a heavy value for Members, simply because of the way I do things and the things I integrate. It's why the testimonials from paying Members read as they do.
The Most Important Thing
— It doesn’t matter to them how long it took; what matters is what I do now and going forward I risk getting a big fat Duh! from any parents out there, but I’m saying it anyway… I’ve stumbled into the best and most exciting time of my life, in a life already brimming with…Read More
Nikoley’s Sunday Scribbles
— Anything, not everything, but lots in-between | March 12, 2023 All settled in; January 6th bullshit you can’t ignore; Naomi Wolf Wowzers; Revisiting the JFK assassination and CIA involvement; A 48-hr deal All settled in It’s been quite the standard first week in any new place one finds themselves. Adverse issues reported, routines sorted,…Read More
Nikoley’s Sunday Scribbles
— Anything, not everything, but lots in-between | March 5, 2023 Well this is way late again so I better account again: Moving finally done; Entrepreneurs; My new book; A stupid new diet study Moved That’s the young entrepreneur team who were my rental agents. Competent and hardworking. Verbal English is poor, but in text,…Read More
Nikoley’s Sunday Scribbles
— Anything, not everything, but lots in-between | February 26, 2023 Well this is way late so I better account: Moving week; The week in review; If I were God; Long walks making videos; Hua Hin; Kanchanaburi; Artificial Intelligence; A new dietary paradigm; My funniest tweets Moving week Moving day began last Sunday evening when…Read More
Nikoley’s Sunday Scribbles
— Anything, not everything, but lots in-between | February 19, 2023 I’ve gone back and forth with this Newsletter thing. I won’t bore you. You’ve either born witness or you can imagine. I guess it comes down to an inability to publish a newsletter adjunct to a blog that isn’t rather like the blog it…Read More
Is It High-Fat or Is It “High-Fat?”
— Prepare for a no-BS dietary epiphany; scare quotes are the clue
I'm very confident in guaranteeing that by the time you finish this post, you will:
- Understand dietary energy balance, utilization, and storage unlike you never have before, no matter how long you've studied it
- Slap your forehead, exclaim ah-ha, and/or kick yourself...whichever your proclivity...once you realize how something so damn simple, that was staring you right in the face, was nonetheless so elusive.
How could you have missed it?
Well, it kinda turns out that we're all a lot more ideological, biased, and confirmation-seeking than we care to admit. Even worse, knowing that one thing is bullshit often unjustly bolsters, in our own minds, that other thing we believe to be true or far better—even when they aren't mutually exclusive or in any way co-dependent.
So, for instance, knowing that dietary extremes like vegan on the far left and carnivore on the far right are bullshit does not automatically make whatever other ideas you might have even a gram more credible or correct. You still have to establish that, and falsifying other dietary approaches is no help.
What's most often the case—and most often overlooked by naysayers—is that if any dietary intervention holds significant popularity for a significant length of time, it's because there's something to it.
What do we have that's been around a long time?
- Whole foods
- High-fat (or is it really "high-fat?")
- Ketogenic (with adequate nutrition)
- CRON (caloric restriction optimal nutrition)
- Intermittent fasting and TRF (time-restricted feeding)
There are probably others...this is the top-of-my-head list. I don't include total fads, hacks, superfoods, etc.
Each of those have cases to be made for them and that's why they persist...all with lots of adherents, advocates, and practitioners. A dietary intervention goes away (or never catches on) because of lack of interest in enough people—which then becomes self-fulfilling because there's no money to be made, so nobody at all is investing anything to advance it.
What I'm about to go over will dovetail into the partial validity of each of those diets. That is, it explains the successful weight loss on those diets, independent of caloric consumption. No, I've not spent a lot of time figuring out how it does so for each one. I just simply know it has to be so, intuitively, just because this thing staring you right in the face is so fundamental; it's both a priori, and a posteriori.
I have given significant thought to why it works, specifically in low-carb, "high-fat," high-protein, and ketogenic diets. And Paleo, I suppose...since Paleo has so much crossover with just about all the diets. By the end of this post, I'm going to have sound dietary advice nailed down, and it's going to be clear like never before just why that advice is the way to go for both weight loss and maintenance (including lean-mass preservation and growth).
And I'll explain this. Plus, more food photos and methods to absolute madness. Plus, a nearly unknown gym hack that delivers enormous benefit and almost anyone can do.
Before I jump into the epiphanic details, you should go over the prerequisite post: How Do You Change The Weight of the “Water Weight?” Then, grab yourself a hot beverage of choice, wait until it loses enough calories to be palatable, and just hope it doesn't lose any weight.
- How Many Grams in a Calorie?
- Massing It All Together
- High-Fat or "High-Fat?"
- My Own Habits (food, walks, swims, weights, protein, fat, carbs, sauces, cayenne, massaman, yacon, Wegovy)
How Many Grams in a Calorie?
Everybody is familiar with calories per gram of macronutrient. Four per gram of carbohydrate and protein, nine per gram of fat. It might seem trivial to invert those fractions, but have you ever done it, and having done so, sat back and contemplated what it could mean? And then, what does what it means, mean? And so on...
Oh, snap. You've gone and hit the nefarious, cruel, and downright greedy paywall. Why can't everything just be free? And why this bait and switch trickery! Well, because this isn't a hobby or side-gig for me, anymore. And, I hate popups, ear-piercing sounds, and ads for bullshit and crap you probably don't need. It's a primary source for making a living now. And, I'm good at it. Twenty years and 5,000+ posts. I'm on the cusp of things a lot. I'm right about stuff...a lot. Point-blank: that sort of thing saves you a lot more than the price of the Membership. Join now.Read More
How Do You Change The Weight of the “Water Weight?”
— It has been a very long time since I've seen anything new. This is new.
It must have been sometime in 2008, 15 years ago....
About a year prior, concerned about my shrinking clothing, I started going to the gym, met with some initial success, blogged about it here, and someone commented that the stuff I was kinda sorta figuring out on my own sounded a little bit like this Art DeVany guy.
The rest is the history where I lost a bunch of weight, became one of the influencers in the burgeoning paleosphere, and so on.
Looking back, I didn't really get caught up too much in the obsessions on both sides over calories. Yea, sure, I initially discounted them, then did an about-face and said they do matter, but the overall paradigm was one of human evolution where, rather than obsessing about calorie counting, you simply note that obesity and all that goes with it is a wholly modern and very recent phenomena.
In other words, whether calories count a great deal or not a wit doesn't matter. There used to be food ways that never required counting anything and nobody was obese. So, figure out what that was and kinda do that, see how it works. And of course, for those reenacting Grok, it's a pretty wide range of food, as I used to harp on over and over...from arctic to antarctic and sea level to 16,000 feet, and everything in-between.
... Getting back to the first sentence, about 15 years ago I was wondering about all this calorie is a calorie, in-out = energy-balance stuff and I read some post by Lyle McDonald on it. Big calories count guy. I recall adding a comment to the post along the lines of "how about the weight of the food itself?"
It seemed silly to me to even ask it, and it wasn't answered, and I put it out of my mind.
Until last week.
Where did the weight go?Read More
Getting Free of Life-Draining Alcohol (6 months; video)
— And For Me, It Was Easy This is the modern, internet-era manifestation of an age-old characteristic of humans—when, at times, being on their best behavior. Everybody has seen it. Everybody has done it. In times past, it was the telephone and before that, it was a personal visit; I’m sure. It’s an imperative sometimes;…Read More
Easier, Faster, Cheaper: This American is Starting a Business in Thailand
— My Eyes Popped When I Saw The Legal Bill
Yea, there were lots of headline images to choose from with guys in business suits shaking hands, making a deal.
Plus, the design is awful (I laughed out loud and knew I had to use it), so I figured you'd figure I cobbled it together myself. Nope. So, proof there's people out there just as devoid of talent as I in terms of image making.
One of the testimonials from a member includes:
I found your website at the beginning of the Paleo days and have followed you ever since. [...] The essence of the experience has been change. You go from one thing to the next as the spirit moves you. I don’t want to miss out on what’s next. — Alan from Utah
This is true. This being the 20th year, when someone asks me what I blog about, "everything" is always the answer. It's never seemed complicated to me. Essentially, fundamentally, a blog is an online journal of a predominantly personal nature. So, I have always cringed at the notion of writing about one thing for years and years and years as though I'm some objective bystander. BORING!
I have no idea how they do it. It would be like working at the same job for 20 years. And I mean, the same fucking job: no promotions, no new tech...the same damn thing day after day after day after day.
I suspect that's why single-issue bloggers eventually go off the rails into bullshit territory. You need something new for engagement's sake, but you're an ABC blog, so you can't write about XYZ. Guess you'll have to write about ABC...bullshit bullshit yada yada, or something.
Observe how Paleo went junk "food" and LC went epileptic diet (clinically ketogenic) for so many. Gotta keep the peeps engaged. I did lots of new stuff too (potato hacks, beans, gut bug stuff, etc.), but always involving an omnivorous, real food paradigm. I evolved; or rather, my understanding and flexibility with diet and nutrition improved to make things more sensible and accessible. I didn't morph into anathemas like fucking candy bars and sticks of GRASSFED!!! butter. What one eats should not be complicated, requiring continual "engaging" guidance from gurus and their flock.
That said, there's a fat blurry line with a blog, and you're never going to get it perfect or just right. At times you're going to share too much; or, you're going to obsess about your own life without enough purpose or object lesson concerning what you're writing about.
That's a continual struggle and the sweet spot is that you have people on one side thinking you're sharing too much personal and on the other, those who want even more of the gory details.
In general, I think an impersonal blog or newsletter is fucking boring. I hope you do to.
To the subject matter. I'm yet again into a new thing; thus, why the foregoing introduction. And yes, I still have pending stuff to publish. My focus has been spread thin. I haven't blogged much about my trip back to the village and I'm saving some of that for when I better develop The Story of a Girl and Her Girls and publish the subsequent parts.
Those two girls are so fantastic. Check this out; it's like 20 seconds.
(Don't even get me started on the dismal state of child rearing in America...)
So, I'm back in Phuket, taking care of a bunch of stuff—including an enormous paperwork clusterfuck involving my motorcycle—and getting ready to move at the end of this month, if not sooner. Undecided where, but it will either be back to the village full time, or to Pattaya Beach where it's only a 7-hr drive to the village—and not a 2-day trip from Phuket...so you have to fly and the airport east or west is 2-hrs drive from the house.
Something else is afoot too.
It has to do with My Easy Way alcohol cessation, which hits the 6-month mark in 2 days. I've been reflecting on that obligatory video and post. The title of this post is testament to what that will be about; which is, there is no way to predict how it's going to go when you quit. Initially, you're focussed on the task of just not drinking, which thankfully, was ridiculously easy for me, this time, at long last. And, you're nostalgic. Perhaps you're a bit depressed because you're truly not having as much fun as you used to, so you're condemned to a slightly or way more mundane life.
So what are you gonna make of it?
If you stay the course it's almost like you can't help yourself but to rebound into making your life fun, challenging, exciting yada yada, again...only from a different perspective and motivation. What's mine? The girl and her girls. It's both the motivation and the reward.
And it doesn't come from some half-drunk, weepy, and forlorn place that's gonna be forgotten about by the time you wake up sober anyway. It's almost the opposite. I'm rather unemotional...stoic about it, even. Lemme tell ya what. Having a chick 32 years younger than you has its definite challenges...
So, what do you do? Well, anyone gets to do what they want but in my case, it adds up to being one more thing—and a rather prescient one at that—where it takes more and more to actually get me angry. And that process evolves from that conscious stoic resolve to a natural response where whatever that thing in the minute is, it's all just information. I can act on it or not, chalk it up, or forget about it.
It also serves as a reminder that I did not, in fact, know it all at the age of 30. Yet.
...I require more than just getting up everyday and writing for some hours. Right now, it's heavily weighted toward Twitter which is going well. From zero since Elon took over—my old account with 8k followers was nuked almost 2 years ago—to closing in on 400 followers. I'm figuring out the code without engaging in all the bullshit people do to get high numbers of brainless morons and they're in abundance. I don't need it. They'll never be paying members.
Here, take a look at this thread (the replies and nested replies) and tell me how many of those 200ish regurgitators are serious candidates for a paying membership. Maybe 2 or 3.
So, I'm starting a business. A real-world, physical business. Like...get up in the morning, move shit around, pound on stuff. Not just tap-tap-tap. I built a house in the province of Sisaket in the spring and summer of 2020, sitting out Covid 1.0.
I relished in that experience, and plus, rural Thais are accustomed to 10-hr day, 7-day work weeks. I got it done in 2 1/2 months with 3-4 guys...older, mature village guys who know how to do everything because they have to. They have to know how to farm rice or cassava or papaya when the pickin's good. They have to know how to raise and tend to livestock. They have to know how to build houses and commercial buildings and they're all jacks of all trades...from laying the concrete pad to setting the concrete columns to laying the concrete blocks to setting the windows to welding together the steel roof structure to running plumbing to setting time. The only things subbed out in my build was electrical, painting, the commercial interior doors, and the front 100% stainless steel gate.
Have a quick look. All cash out of pocket, about $40-45K, estimated. The land is free and clear, too. And unlike in the "land of the free," there are no property taxes whereby, you're actually leasing "your land" from the state.
What that wonderfully exciting daily experience did was to instill in me a desire to start a construction company here in Thailand.
I grew up in and around construction. Various family members were in various trades and I spent large swaths of my youth, from age 10 onward, working on construction sites. It's like blood in veins to me.
If I wanted to do this in America?
I would even get started in "The Land of the Free."
TOO MUCH FUCKING BULLSHIT!
So, you get to follow along as I start and operate a construction company as an American in Thailand...ridiculously easier, faster, and cheaper than in the so-call land of the free...and utterly shameful delusion.
So here we go...details, details, details. All of them.
What Kind of Construction and Development Company?Read More
LC-Keto Jimmy Moore Pleads Guilty; Sentenced To 20 Years
— Has Justice Been Served? If So, To Whom, and For What? Well it is a pathetic spectacle, I’ll give you that. Do I feel sorry for the guy? I don’t feel one way or the other about it. What motivates me out of a state of indifference is an opportunity to simply do what…Read More
One-on-One With Richard Nikoley
The first and most important thing to understand about me and how I might help you breakthrough, overcome, advance, or acquire new knowledge and insight is that I am a consummate generalist. Secondly, I’m an autodidactic polymath, which is a fancy way of saying that I have taught myself a fair to modest level of…Read More
Back to Si Sa Ket Province — Isan, Thailand
— A Touching Homecoming and Reunion The “loads of fun and smooth sailing” getting here is craftily written about here and here. Don’t miss either; both are open public-access. Those two posts and this one serve as as sort of interlude to the series I’m drafting for Members which begins here. Si Sa Ket is…Read More
Tropical Ocean Swimming and Barefoot Walking
— Ruined By Social and Political Ranting Still sitting in a hotel room, still in Surin—as told in my last—awaiting, yet again, for something to take place that ought to have happened days ago. It’s a boring story involving banks—three of them—and holding your money in the float interminably…the evil fraud-fucks…and I know it’s evil…Read More
The Story Of a Girl and Her Girls — Interim Update
— Mostly Peaceful Good News… (Yes, she’s a mother of two daughters, aged 13 and 11.) I’d hoped to have out Part 2 by now. Part 1 ended abruptly. I found myself in a nice, loungy-like place with live music and I approached a young 20-something girl. Pretty hot. Vixen looking. Started talking and she…Read More
The Story Of a Girl and Her Girls — Part 1
— From The Way-Back Beginning (1982) To The Present
I've taken some time off and caught up with sleep and protein-targeted food. I was a zombie by the time I'd written and published my final post of the end-of-year sale/anti-sale campaign. I was on the verge of just letting the campaign ride that final day without any push or shove; but I showed up and persisted, the final post ending up far less than intended when I'd set about drafting it.
I'm now well rested, well fed, and rarin' to go...and you're about to find out why.
The promotion has gone fantastically and I ought to be of higher energy to drive home this last 12 hours that ends NYC time. Thus far, 24 new memberships for total additional revenue of about $2,500. That’ll help a lot. Thanks, and welcome to y’all.
Well, as it turns out, that post unleashed quite a flood and I more than doubled what had been accomplished in the month since beginning on Black Friday. I finished up with 53 new orders totalling $6,290. This is in addition to what Stripe, my processor, labels "Subscription Update" over the same span of time—the monthly and annual recurring payments.
Thank you very much, one and all. Most of those were completely new memberships, the rest being upgrades of which, some existing members took advantage. For those who didn't take up the upgrade offer, thank you too for your recurring subscriptions, always and forever locked in at the now half-price, so long as the membership is maintained. My cancelation rate is so minimal that I don't even spend any time trying to figure out what went wrong with that particular customer.
On that score, I'm gratified that so many new subscribers are women...a welcome relief after my only micro-slew of cancellations...my Jimmy Moore post where, in a nutshell, I said that though I find the thing distasteful and such, it's not pedophilia. I only said that because...it's not pedophilia. Indeed, the truth often stings and gets a few panties in a wad.
(It was going to be utter and complete condemnation from me—in lockstep with all NPC regurgitators of approved and expected narrative—judge, jury, convict, and execute Jimmy...or I'm a pedo-lover. So ya think I'm all broken up about those cancelations?
No, though all this praying for the salvation of their souls gets to be tiresome and daunting. [wink]
...One interesting factor was the worry that I would lose recurring revenue by people upgrading from monthly or annual to lifetime, which is a one-&-done. So, someone's at $50 per year, takes the lifetime deal, $225, but that's offset by a $50 loss per year ($72 for monthly). Well, a dozen annual peeps did do that. BUT, 18 folks took up the annual offer of $40 first year, then $50 thereafter, so I ended up with a net 6 for $300 additional recurring annually. And, I ended up with 35% more monthly subscriptions on net than when I started.
All to the cool.
What many of you don't know is that when the original Black Friday to New Year discount code, BLACKTO2023, expired at the Times Square ball drop, I created a new discount code, BETTERLATE2023, and sent out a couple of emails to existing paid subscribers only, giving an additional 24 hours to upgrade to Annual or Lifetime at the old prices of $50 and $250 (no discount). Bang! That got a bunch more additional on the whole deal. They finally believed, or whatever.
I've always considered myself a piss-poor marketer but lately, I've had success with simple but repeated truth-telling, as well as my mocking of traditional marketing calls to action (anti-marketing), where, instead of calling it copywriting, I call it copylying.
So, instead of...
BUT WAIT!!! THAT'S NOT ALL!
When you call and place your order order within the next 30-minutes, we're going to give you, at no additional charge...
ALL THE SECRETS TO THE UNIVERSE!
...BUT THAT'S NOT ALL!!!
You also get this combination spaghetti-pot, clam-steamer!
Instead, I did...
- An offer: a modest discount; price-lock in perpetuity
- With a deadline
- And a threat: prices doubles
- I told no lies; I did exactly what I said I would do
- Didn't hype it at all: same weird-ass, cringe-inducing, eclectic, polymathish, dot-connecting, synthesizing, often embarrassing blog...as it always was
I've always held to the original notion of what a blog—a Web Log—is; which is, a sort of diary or journal crafted for public consumption. Many forget about that, calling their news and analysis a blog. Nope. When you hold to the essentials of what makes a blog a blog, it's thoroughly unique. Nobody can copy you because nobody else is you. Nobody has your same stories. It turns on how interesting they are and how artfully you can tell them. And you can get better at it. Practice makes perfect.
The only true essential is that you lead an interesting life...
...and this can be changed. It can be changed from one moment to the next. It entails getting off your lazy ass and showing up to do something notable, remarkable, interesting, or all three and more.
...And yea, it does make me smile, looking back to April, 2021, when I kicked off my paid-memberships endeavor with zero idea of how it would go.
What makes me more than smile, though—as in, laugh my damn ass off—is the handful of usual suspects. The hahahahahahahaha-type messages and comment submissions in response to the kick-off post announcing that you now have to pay to play.
My favorite was from someone named "Fuck You," email address email@example.com with the 2-word comment...you guessed it: "Fuck You!"
The non-descript-gendered person certainly has a way with words.
As I have said and written many many times, I write to engender either love or hate and I'm fine with either. Indifference is what I strive to avoid.
Arguably, hate is even more valuable than love because the haters are your most engaged audience of all. They read every single post and watch every single video...to give it a thumbs down. I could do a vid of me giving the feral female cat around here—who shows up every night to yell at me—half my can of tuna, then a helping of milk in the bowl for her to wash it down...and they would still thumb-down the video.
That's what makes them so lovable. I love and cherish the haters. Honestly, I do. I wouldn't want to change them. Rather, I vow to deliver to them years of self-righteous inducing anguish upon which they may dwell.
When I wrote the final post of the aforementioned campaign, I concluded with three things I'd intended to write about during the campaign but ran out of time. My ocean swimming, my cooking on a Thai budget, and The Girl and rekindling with her.
She turned 30 two days ago, incidentally, and I turn 62 in about 3 weeks. In two more years, she'll finally be half my age.
You probably don't have to think very hard to guess which of those three topics got me the most action on new memberships and upgrades, and the most feedback.
Happy New Year Richard,
Your recent post with pictures of Yui’s kids that you're helping inspired me to say it’s really heartening to see you have reestablished a connection with them all; I was sorry to hear about the troubles earlier in the year and it was tempting as a Thailand long-termer to think "what did you expect?" But cynicism is such a lose-lose way of thinking, and so lazy; I’m almost ashamed of being generally a cynic over the last few years.
My wife had a young daughter when we met and some of my favorite memories are of taking her on activities (Segway in the park, teaching her backgammon, going camping and making fires etc.). So I have some inkling of the joy you feel on being in a position to enhance their lives with no repayment other than the exquisite joy of watching them grow, learn and have fun.
I wish you (and your chosen family) all the best for 2023.
And a number of others.
(There are three Thailand expats I know of whose reading and following of my antics far precede my own expat status in Thailand. All three are Members.)
The headline photo above is Chili in May of 2020 when I met her 10-year-old darlingness for the first time. In the nearly 3 years since knowing her and younger sister, Wasabi, neither have said so much as 1 cross word to me.
(..Contrast that with Western religious and moral decay and depravity in terms of child rearing, where parents are derided by their teenagers on a near daily basis.)
They're both respectful, grateful, and loving to a fault. Wasabi has told me—even before the early death of her ~45 year-old dad last February to cancer—that she loves me like a father. That, and seeing Chili grow so much, explicating in stark contrast how much I've squandered by missing a lot of it, weighs on me like a ton of bricks—as well it should—and it was time for this man to man-up about that.
They are become the most important thing in my life, if they'll allow the dedication and action that implies. That means: to the exclusion of all else where any conflicts-of-interest might lurk.
"All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." — Romans 8:28
I consider that Biblical wisdom to be fully open-ended. That is, no particular—or any—God required. Substitute The Buddha, Confucius, Allah...or even nature and its natural order itself. It means: if your human sense, consciousness, and spirit transcend the confines of your physical existence in body and mind, you have the opportunity to regard everything from the enlightened perspective of good.
"And God saw that it was very good." — Genesis 1:31, the 7th use of the word good; in the final verse of the 1st chapter of the 1st book. And I will take that to mean that the creation of earth and humanity is a very good thing to befall a universal existence devoid of cause or purpose...an A is A, existence exists tautology that is neither benevolent or malevolent, but just is. It takes humanity to usher in good and evil and without evil, there's no possibility, no reference point, to what could possibly be considered the good.
(Even Covid. Look at the heinous-humanoid depravity and criminality fraudulently posing as benevolence for mankind it has exposed—and that's only a spec of the tip of the iceberg. This is good.)
- Intro — Past History with Asia and Asian Chicks
- Anticipation in 2019
- My Very First Words to Yui: "One Minute"
- I Country Girl; Not Mean Stupid Girl
- The Covid Disaster/Opportunity/Lemonade
- The House Build
- The Conflicts
- The Move Away
- Pattaya and Phuket
- The Fund-Raising Debacle
- The Team-Up With Sister, Nun
- Alcohol Cessation and Its Effect
- The Mess She Made and What I Did About It
- The Things We Both Love
- My Departure From Phuket...Tomorrow
- Leaving America Behind
There's the 1550-word introduction to this post, which totals 6,000. Yep, it's for Members from this point forward. There's no free-member level anymore. That level has been deleted, no ill-will intended.
It was superfluous and redundant because things evolved into what's public content and what's paid content. There was no need of a meaningless distinction that earned me an email address and a pain-in-the-ass 600+ login accounts to manage...for free.
If you're to this point and are left feeling unsatisfied and wanting, well here's some tough love for ya:
I told you so.
I gave you every chance and warning over a space of 5 weeks.
I have attained a New Plateau in life and in the makeup of this blog, now beginning its 20th year.
Best bet is that all y'all non-members take the L: accept the penalty—be it $6m, $50y, or $250life—lick your wounds, take your medicine, learn your lesson, and read on...expecting much more devastatingly interesting and eclectic/polymath long-form...for years to come...especially as I intend to watch and document those two angel-girls grow, develop, marry forthright husbands, and if counting my lucky stars, shower her mother and I with grandchildren.
I'm glad I can't predict the future. All I've got are my intentions and the dreams they inspire (sounds reversed, but it's the proper way...rendering one's dreams into something that's actually attainable). I'll pursue those dreams by setting out to do what I have decided and intend to do...for better or worse, one could say...but that's the spice of life and whatever will be, will be.
Intro — Past History with Asia and Asian Chicks
1982, Oregon State University, Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC).
"We're shipping you off to Pusan, Korea to catch the USS San Bernardino (LST-1189) for your Midshipman summer 'cruise.'"
Yea, they call it a cruise. Ha! It was a cruise alright...one that would thoroughly change the course of my life in what would turn out to be—now nearly 41 years later—irrevocable.Read More
Out Of The Worst Grows The Best
— You can’t get there from here There’s 12 hours and 10 minutes remaining in the sale/anti-sale. That is, it’s 10 minutes before midnight as I begin this final post of my year 2022, 2565 in Thai years. I’ve given half the can of tuna I just opened to the feral cat who stops by…Read More