I found this to be incredibly powerful.
A year ago, I had a cardiac event – not a heart attack. Several stories have been written about how people have worn an Apple Watch and had their lives saved. While I did not experience atrial fibrillation the ability to monitor my overall heart rate, I credit to getting proper treatment. \
I have two little dogs that I walk every night. The distance varies every night, sometimes it’s a mile, often it’s more – depends on how tired their short legs are. I have been walking them every night for years for their benefit and my health. I use my Apple watch to track my steps and generally also pay attention to my walking heart rate and then the recovery time after. \
During our usual routine walk, I noticed a little acid reflux, and when I got back in the house, I had 2 Tums, and 10 minutes later, I felt fine. The following day the walk was uneventful. On Saturday, we were doing our walk, and I had that same discomfort. It felt like acid reflux very high up in my throat. I followed the same process as a few days prior and waited my ten minutes. I also noticed my heart rate had returned to normal as it always does. But something did not feel right. My heart rate actually increased well above what I was used to after the walks.\
A quick check of the internet to review my symptoms and everything either did not apply, or I could explain way.[^1]
- Jaw Pain – No
- Back Pain – No
- Chest pain around the heart – No
- Sweating – Yes but I had just walked 2 miles in the thick fog
- Arm pain – Yes but slight and I had been playing guitar for 6 hours that day so again explainable
My wife was out, so I called and mentioned how I was feeling, and I was going to go to the ER to get checked out. She agreed and commented that it was very atypical of me so I should follow my gut.
I drove myself to the Emergency room[^2] Before I walked into the ER, I rechecked my pulse, and it was back to normal. I contemplated turning around but decided to go in. I was brought into an exam room, and some quick tests showed I did not have a heart attack. I would need a more extensive analysis at another hospital to rule out anything else. During the procedure, they inserted a catheter in my right arm and directed it to my heart. The doctor injected some dye, and it could not have been any clearer. It might as well have been Godzilla walking down 5th avenue. On closer inspection, they were able to determine it was a blood clot in my right coronary artery that was causing a 98% blockage[^3]. They were able to quickly dissolve the blood clot and insert a stent at the same time to make sure the artery remained open. From the time I was wheeled into the time the procedure was over was about 21 minutes.
It has been a year now, and I feel great! Except for those two instances of “heartburn,” I was feeling fine before. I have done a few things to improve my health, and there is always more to do. I am lucky, and I think tracking my overall health through the Apple Watch made me more aware and paid more attention to my body.
[^1]: NOTE: Your diagnosis from the internet will always be death – or cancer, better to skip this step.
[^2]: Driving myself to the ER instead of calling 911 was not a smart idea. Thinking you are Iron Man is also not recommended.
[^3]: I was awake during the procedure (it was painless), and I was able to see the blockage on the screen as clear as day.\
I have always loved I.M. Pei’s work. I always found his use of space and geometry fascinating.
“Stylistic originality is not my purpose,” he said. “I want to find the originality in the time, the place and the problem.”
There is a very good documentary about him as well called First Person Singular: I.M. Pei
Jon pointed out this video which is truly beautiful to watch even if you don’t like Wasabi. I can not think of any other businesses that have been in the family for 8 generations.
This blew my mind:
The story was compelling and the cinematography is excellent. Sadly, I had no idea how one of my favorite foods was even created! And, I’m even more sad to learn that most wasabi out there is actually fake:
Very few people have tried the real thing, because the real thing is that rare. “The extent to which we’re eating fake wasabi is huge,” said Brian Oats, the president of Pacific Coast Wasabi, which bills itself as “North America’s only commercial grower of high-quality water-grown authentic Wasabi.”.
“Probably about 99 percent of wasabi is fake in the North America.” That holds just about everywhere else, too. Even, though some might not realize it, in Japan. “I’d say about 95 percent is fake in Japan,” he added.
via The Washington Post
I decided I should post this list before we are into 2017. For the past few years I have kept an active list of the books I read in the current year. I believe I got this idea from Patrick Rhoneoriginally though I have seen many people do the same.
Over the course of the year if I see something that I might be interested in I throw it in a list (this year it in an Apple Notes), then when I ready for a new book I generally grab one from the list that strikes my mood at the time.
The books are in the order I finished them. I usually have at least two going at any point in time, I blame this on my NADD. I have notes and thoughts on all the of them but this is not meant to be a review, just a collection.
A few years ago I converted to an all digital format, the list links to an authors site directly, Amazon Kindle or Apple iBooks depending where I purchased that item.
Without going into specifics the ones that are bold are the ones I enjoyed the most.
- Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less
- Starting and Sustaining: A book and spreadsheet to help you launch and maintain a SaaS web application by Garrett Dimon
- Building Software products is a weekend by Matt Kramer
- Web applications 2 new edition: Nathan Barry
- Becoming Steve Jobs by Brent Schlender and Rick Tetzeli)
- The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan W. Watts
- Living the Remote Dream
- The Automatic Customer: Creating a Subscription Business in Any Industry: John Warrillow
- The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo
- People Over Profit: Break the System, Live with Purpose, Be More Successful: Dale Partridge, Blake Mycoskie
- Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future eBook: Peter Thiel, Blake Masters
- Tiny House Decisions: Everything I wish I knew when I built my tiny house by Ethan Waldman
- Working on the Road: The Inventional Guide to Full-Time Freedom by Chris Guillebeau
- Starting + Sustaining by Garrett Dimon
- Meaningful: The Story of Ideas That Fly by Bernadette Jiwa
- Stand Out: How to Find Your Breakthrough Idea and Build a Following Around It by Dorie Clark
Recently I read a post over at Rocket Ink about Patrick Welkers’ podcast listening habits. It made me think about my own reasons why and what I listen to.
I love to listen to podcasts. I started listening about 5.5 years ago when I really grew tired of the radio. I figured I could use my commute time to catch up on news, learn about the something technical or pure entertainment. The time I listen now has increased due the enjoyment I get out of them. I listen at work (when it does not affect what I am working on), during my commute, working around the house – whenever it makes sense without ignoring my family or friends. Sometimes I listen just for company.
The funny thing is I hate talk radio. Below list of 27 or so regularly listened to podcasts that are all talk. So why would I listen to podcasts that are talk shoes? I think it because that I can’t pick and choose the programs on the radio to listen to, or I was never able to “connect” with the hosts.
Connection to the hosts and topics is really important. You spend a lot of time with these people in your head so you really need to love what you are hearing. They become your “friends” in many ways. A few days before a weekly show is released I start to look forward to the shows because of this connection. Very similar to how you might feel about a character on a favorite televisions program.
The list below is always changing. Shows with be added and removed. Sometimes if I am really behind I will remove an episode for the week. I try not to get anxiety ridden about having a lot of shows in the queue and I am not trying to reach “podcast zero” either. These are for my enjoyment, education only.
My podcast client of choice is Overcast. I love the Voice Boost (especially when I am in the car) and the Smart Speed to reduce the pauses in some shows. Using that feature has allowed me to listen to more shows and save time without speeding up the playback. I think to date I am over 70 hours saved.
- Accidental Tech Podcast 1
- The Talk Show with John Gruber
- Back to Work
- This American Life
- Roderick on the Line
- The Dalrymple Report
- Mac Power Users
- Home Work
- Turning this Car Around
- The Rebound
- The Pen Addict
Every two weeks or as shows post
- Anxious Machine
- The Big Web Show
- Welcome To Macintosh
- The Startup Podcast
- Hello Internet
- Podcast Method
- Release Notes
Based on Topics or Guests
Retired or On Hiatus
- Bold shows represent current favorites and ones I always listen to. ↩
Last night I saw the annoucement from Amazon about the Dash Button. I immediately had two thoughts:
- This must be an April Fools day prank that was deployed early by mistake
- If this is real – is this genius or the most ridiculous thing in the world?
Apprently I am not the only one who had the exact same experience.
This year Monica and I had the chance to take the kids to Disney World. It was a quick trip, three day taste of the sites and where we might want to spend more time in the future. The last time I was there the Epcot dome looked like the Death Star (it was still being built). This is just a few random observations I had over the trip.
- I hate roller coasters and many of the rides are roller coasters in disguise (but I made it through all of them).
- The ability to use FastPass to skip a few lines a day is necessary (IMO) if you have small children.
- The addition of the magic bands to allow you to pay and move through the park is phenomenal.
- Apple Pay works amazing in the park if you dont have wrist bands or do not want to charge things to your room.
- The accessibility within the park for those who need assistance is like nothing I have ever seen. So well done.
- Wifi thorughout the parks was very good – much better than standard hotel wifi you might find on a business trip
- Logistics to run the park must be on the scale of trying to host an Olympic event every single day
- Selfie sticks are a real thing and are everywhere. At one point during the trip there was an area with 50 or more in the air. It looked like some odd tribal group with spears in the air.
- The iPhone app was very handy for looking at how long the lines are for rides, finding snacks and navigating the park in general.
- I still hate roller coasters
- Comfy shoes are a must! We were in the park approximately 4-6 hours a day and we walked at least 8 miles (12.87k) a day.
- If you forget something you can rent it. (scooters, cameras, strollers, etc.)
- Transportations to the various parks was so well done.
- I manage many large projects at a time for work but I couldn’t have planned this trip with out the help of a travel agent (thanks Mary!) to help you book your trip, dinner reservations, fast pass rides. There are just so many little details to consider.
- Seeing people walking around eating these GIANT turkey legs was bizarre.
- The amount of land the parks occupies is crazy
- Many people go to the park really really late to shorten the wait in lines.
It was a great trip and I am so glad we did it.
About a year ago I was a guest on Tom’s Think Make Sell podcast. After doing the show we continued our correspondence and discovered we had a lot in common and forged a friendship. Over the course of those discussions we both spoke about software ideas that we would like to build. We finally decided on one idea and have started the process! In Toms’s post he starts to outline some of our plans. If you are interested please follow along as we will both be descibing different parts of the process. Soon there will be a sign up email list with more details and regular updates. I hope you follow along.
Many people use January 1st as the date to measure their success from the previous year and make plans for the future year. Resolutions and changes in behavior are always at the top of the list. I have never subscribed to this thinking. Turns out my birthday was that marker for me.
Yesterday was my birthday. If I am honest it has not my favorite day of the year. It has been this way since I was seventeen. Nothing tragic ever happened to make me dislike it. For years it bothered me and I was not able to figure out why. Everyone told me it was the age change, but this never bothered me at all.
Reflecting on the past year would often let me down in terms of accomplishments and desires perhaps not fulfilled.
This year I am trying to be better about those things. Reduce the desire to beat myself up – let myself off the hook. I want to spend more time on the positive things in my life. Spend more time on the things that matter, friends, family and exciting work.
Saying no to more things so I can say yes to things that matter most to me. Simplify and reduce the mental clutter I have accumulated over the years.
Many many people have helped shape this mindset change in me, but no one more than Monica Rodgers. She has showed me a side of myself that I refused to see, she has loved me without question, she has helped me through rough patches and supported me when I did not think I deserved support. Her presence in my life has changed everything.
This is the best gift that I have ever received ! Thank you love…