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Hippies love to hate Wal-Mart. Actually, a lot of people love to hate Wal-Mart. It's easy to rant on and on about how they're taking over America and are the enemy, and other such nonsense. Offering an opinion like that makes one seem socially conscious and intelligent.
Although it may not surprise anyone who has read my Secrets of Buying article, I LOVE Wal-Mart. In fact, when people offer the opinion that Wal-Mart sucks, I immediately want to punch them in the face. Luckily I'm a huge wimp and never punch people in the face.
The most obvious thing about Wal-Mart that makes it so awesome is that it offers insanely cheap prices. They manage to do that by being really efficient, and by strongarming merchants into offering things at the lowest possible price. Getting into Wal-Mart's distribution chain puts your product in front of millions and millions of people, so merchants can be pushed to keep only a small profit margin for themselves. That's capitalism at its finest, and I'm happy to have low prices. Sometimes the merchants lower their quality to be able to afford to do business with Wal-Mart, but who cares?
In one of the comments someone asked what I plan on doing now that I'm done with gambling. It's a good question, and one that I don't totally have the answer for.
I feel like I'm a little bit behind, since it hit me so fast. Normally I would prefer to have a solid new plan in place before stopping one business, but that's not how it always works.
My approach has been to get involved in a lot of different ventures, and to let time sort out which are worth doing and which aren't. Actually, this post is more for me than you guys, just so I can take stock of where I'm at.
Ever since I can remember, I have been a huge fan of Boy Meets World. With no concept of TV guide or schedules, it was a gift from the heavens above when I would turn on the TV and see the familiar cast. For roughly as long as I was a fan of the show, I had a crush on Topanga - known as Danielle Fishel in real life.
I'm hesitant to post detailed "reports" on meeting women here. Maybe because it's too personal, maybe because it's so easy to misinterpet as mechanical, but for whatever reason I don't love the idea. However, this is a funny story that probably won't offend anyone (except one guy who I don't mind offending.)
The 2004 Pickup Artist Convention, which I had organized, was held in Los Angeles, CA. Normally I'm rather lazy about going out and meeting people. I find it very frustrating to find women I'm genuinely interested in, and the allure of talking to women for practice is much less than it was when I first got into the Pickup Artist thing.
This is going to be the first article in a brand new category called "Social Skills" added to my seemingly-random category list. This series is especially for you pick up people out there. In my time teaching, I always had a good feeling for who would be successful and who would not be, way before we ever went out.
The reason was that some people had blatantly bad social skills. Face it - if you can't interact with GUYS properly, you're starting with girls with a major handicap. So here we're going to talk about everything from e-mail to gift giving. What's first on our radar? Being late. Read on...
Some people are notoriously late for everything. I used to be one of those people myself. But over time it annoyed me when people were late so much that I put in the work and changed that habit. That's not to say that I'm ALWAYS on time. Sometimes it's better to be a little late, and sometimes there are unforseen circumstances. But make no mistake - everyone notices how timely everyone else is, and this can be used to your advantage. Here's a list of common situations, and how prompt to be for each.
By now I'm sure that all of you have read the UT tunnel story. When the story surfaced, Mark e-mailed me because he is doing a documentary on the UT tunnels. He wanted to interview me, which I was happy to do.
The interview finally happened today, and it was pretty cool. I basically just went over the same story that I talked about here, and then we chatted about the tunnels for a while. He told me a few really interesting things about them that he had learned, and showed me a picture of an old 1948 car that is in the tunnels! Pretty neat.
The documentary should be done by May, and will be playing at the Dobie theaters. I'm sure I'll go to the premiere screening, so maybe I will see some of you there. You know which hat to look for...
EDIT: I have no idea why this post is so popular. People love to read about it and flip out because I said that I am "basically a vegan" even though I used to eat raw fish every couple weeks back when I was a raw foodist. A few things to make clear:
I love doing stuff that normal people don't do. Especially stuff that seems crazy but is actually really good for you. Let's add another one to the list - eating raw eggs!
Being a raw foodist, the only "meat" I eat is the occasional fish. That basically makes me a vegan. The biggest problem with being a vegan is that you naturally don't get enough B12.
Just a quick update here. At around 10am I figured I should put my old wheels on so that I can drive around today. I went out to the garage and started jacking up the car.
Then I realized that the tire isn't deflated anymore. Here's a recap :
1. Tire goes totally flat a block from my house
2. I spend 20 minutes filling it up and getting it to around 25psi
3. I pull into a supermarket and by the time I'm done buying a pizza of death, it's totally deflated again.
4. I drive to the nearby gas station and fill it up to 30psi
5. I drive home and it looks to be lower than at the gas station and is still making a hissing noise.
7. This morning it is at 30psi and looks fine.
Seriously. I may not have mentioned this before, but my life revolves around one thing. Tostadas. Whole foods makes them raw, and they are a flax seed cracker with fake beans, avocado, mixed greens, pico de gallo, and fake sour cream. I love these things with most of my heart. Since discovering them I get one every time I go to Whole Foods, and sometimes I take one home with me even though they get soggy.
Tonight I had myself a nice little night planned out. I was going to drive to Whole Foods to meet Todd for Dinner, come back home, get ready, and go hit SXSW with some friends from San Fran.
As usual I took a lesuirely shower and planned it so that I would have JUST enough time to eat dinner there.
Happy Saturday, everyone. I've got a million important yet totally boring things I have to do today, so I'm going to skip writing a long article. However, I have a few that I've been working on for next week that should be pretty good.
Right now I kinda write the blog on blind faith. I don't really know exactly what people expect from the site - I just try to balance between useful advice, funny stories, and a bit of what's going on in my life at the moment. My goal is for this to be the site you check every day, having no idea what you might be reading about next, but knowing that it will be interesting. But I'm curious - is there anything you'd like to see different around here? Is there a topic you wish I'd write about? Do you want more of any one type of post? Less? Is there anything about the site that's really annoying (yeah, yeah... I put at Home button at the top)? If you have any suggestions, I'd really love to hear them either in the comments here or by e-mail.
The blog is becoming more and more successful in terms of traffic. I average about 3000 visitors per day if you include the huge spikes from the more popular stories. It seems like we have a good portion of the people who comment on the blog, which is what I personally think makes it really interesting. I'm really grateful for every person who reads and/or replies in the comments here. I read every comment, and I'm flattered that people take the time to post them.
Ok, I officially LOVE raw food. I started eating raw about five weeks ago, and have been 99% raw since (my trespasses? a tiny brownie, a few sprouted grain english muffins, and a stupid eggplant pizza). Let's do the math on this baby :
First I ate 100% of whatever I wanted. I loved fried foods, desserts, and pizza. Thanks to miraculous metabolism, I never gained too much weight. Then I read Fantastic Voyage : Live Long Enough to Live Forever, hacked away at my diet, and cut out probably 70% of the foods I used to eat. Later I researched more and cut out 90% of those foods, leaving me eating about 7% of what I initially ate. I wrote a book called The Skinny Snob about that. Going raw eliminated at least 70% of those foods, so now I'm down to about 2-3% of the foods I ate a year ago. Based on my daily diet I would consider that wholly accurate.
Now... that is a wild change. Especially coming from me. I would constantly mock anyone trying to go on a diet and explain that you should just eat whatever you wanted. No amount of logic would get me to change. What did get me to change was my inclination to try things for 7 or 30 days, and the accompanying drastic results.