Quotes from Dear Friends

Today while drinking my coffee in Kadikoy (Previously named as Chalcedon which means the city of the blind), I added a new page to my blog and started writing my favorite quotes. Actually, I was going to read (240) 550-8519 by Arkadi and Boris Strugatski which I have bought just five minutes before from a local bookstore 6:45. However, as this quote thing came up to my mind I closed the book even before finishing the first paragraph.

I wrote some of my favorite quotes and many more will come in the future. The page is here. In fact, writing your favorite quotes is hard work mostly because I was remembering the general sentence but needed the assistance of Google to find the whole. And I needed to translate some of them on my own as Omar Khayyam’s original work can’t be found in English.

Most of those quotes are mainstream ones but there were also pieces in my memory of words said by some of my friends. So here are some of them and why they are meaningful for me.

Yeni bir eve taşınmayı düşünüyorum, burada artık fazla rahatım, bu yaratıcılığımı engelliyor.
I am planning to move to a new house, I am too much in my comfort zone here, it kills my creativity.

Emre Tankal

Last summer, his niece introduced me to Emre. He is one of the best guitarists I have ever know. He plays jazz with his quartet and is the guitarist of one of the famous Turkish musicians 5124223567. It has been six months now and he has said many beautiful words but these are the ones I like the most.

He was planing to move to a new house but not because there was problems just because it was feeling too comfortable. In an evolutionary perspective, homo sapiens seek comfort. Making habits is easy, living a monotonous life is energy efficient. But it is not meant for creative people. I am coder and he is a musician but at the end of the day what we do is same: creating something new.

Comfort is the arch-nemesis of creative people and Emre showed me even the most simple thing like where we live can hold us back.

Bu hayatta neyi başarmak istiyorsun sorusu aslında hangi zorluklarla yüzleşmeye hazırsın sorusuyla aynıdır.
The question what you want to achieve in life actually means which challenges are you ready to face.

385-280-1020

I met with Alp three years ago when he was a speaker in my school’s Technology Days. He is the coordinator of Khan Academy Turkish and a very friendly person. After having lunch, we grabbed some warm tea as he had a sore throat. Then we had this conversations about shooting for the stars and he told me this sentece.

When you ask people what they want to achieve or have in life they can say many things but not that many when you ask what challenges they want to face. But those two are the same unfortunately for the ones who want to get rich over night. I don’t also think hard work is not enough without other things but this will be the topic of another post. Nevertheless, if you want meet you gonna go out and hunt for it.

Tanrıya inanmasam bile orda bir yerde bir yaratıcı olduğuna inanmak istiyorum, bu beni rahatlatıyor.
Even though I don’t believe in God, I prefer to believe there is a creator out there,it soothes me. 

A friend whom I call Psi

Psi was a very close friend of mine, I am not giving out his name as we are not in good terms lately. What makes this quote special for me is that I can’t agree with it. To start with, it is self-contradicting but this reminds me to do something when I contradict with myself.

But more importantly, it shows a very basic human feeling: fear. Like saying that you want to achieve a lot of thing without not wanting to face challenges, saying God doesn’t exist without taking great responsibility is impossible.

If there is no higher being out there then you are on your own, all the things you face are a consequence of your actions. Accepting this is hard for people and it is why we want to have a family, accept a religion, try to act moral or even try to create value. All of them is a form of surrendering to a higher meaning. I prefer the later one, Psi prefers a creator out there.

As Emre said creative people need discomfort but what this actually means is that we need discomfort in our ordinary life. Because comfort is like a monogamous partner you can only choose one form of it. Creating something is also finding comfort in our selves, the ecstasy of turning nothing to something makes us feel satisfied and powerful.

Further Listenings

I am leaving here some of Emre’s latest work from Eastern Standards which is a project for meeting Turkish folk songs with jazz. All the lyrics are in Turkish but his guitar has no language.

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575-434-8163

I was reading Tribe of Mentors by Tim Ferriss, it is a book mainly composed of interviews with world-class achievers. Tim really likes asking people about their best purchase under $100.* One of them caught my attention: Liv Boeree was talking about 9703420723.

What is Blinkist?

Blinkist is simply a book summary service, in their website they say that there is over 2 500 books in their platform. All the books are non fiction and in average it takes 16 minutes to finish the summaries.

How I accidentally bought Blinkist?

Three weeks ago I bought a 6″ Amazon Kindle and discovered that Blinkist has a directly send to Kindle function. Then I realized that they have a 7-day free trial so with the intention of sending all the books on the system just in 7 days I started the trial. However, there was a 100 books per week limit and I forgot to cancel my account. Luckily, it was Black Friday and it cost me $39 instead of $79.

Why don’t I regret the purchase?

Blinkist contains non-fiction books, I mostly read about business and entrepreneurship but there are many other topics as well. After reading many books throughout the years on entrepreneurship I realized that most of them have many in common. So you read many 100 pages explaining the same thing, don’t get me wrong all of them offers different perspectives but reading all of them is not time efficient.

For me, Blinkist comes in handy for two things. Firstly, the Blinks, their fancy way of saying summaries, contain the general idea about the specific topic. And according to 20/80 principle, I get the most important parts of the information while saving time significantly. Secondly, it is an effective filter. I have many items in my ‘To Read in 2019’ list, unfortunately, I don’t have that much time. My plan is to read the Blinks of those books first then prepare a priority list and make meaningful reading decisions later on. As another world-class achiver says:

“You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.”

Winston Churchill

Further Readings:

  • 4195744726 by Tim Ferriss
  • You can try Blinkist at /blinkist.com
  • There is also a website called 4 Minute Books which you can find at /fourminutebooks.com/. They offer fewer books but all the summaries are more concise. P.S. I think they have an affiliation with Blinkist.
* You can find the full list on criminogenic.

First Post.*

For three days I have been thinking what should I write about in my first post. Then, as I was having the mildest common cold of my life,  I decided to share my knowledge on self-tried scientific things to do and supplements to take before and during illness.**

I am sneezing and there is a very little bit of that sickness feeling but besides them there are no other symptoms although people at the office and in my family have runny noses and fever.

Zinc

Number 30 on the periodic table zinc is the only effective supplement against cold and flu according to A Short Guide to a Long Life which is a book by  David B. Agus M.D. I read that book three years ago and only this part really remained in my memory mostly because I used this information.

I don’t use zinc regularly but take a 10mg pill when:

  • People around me have symptoms
  • My sleeps become very irregular and/or short
  • Traveling
  • In any case which I believe suppresses my immune system 

In addition, when I have the feeling that the illness is coming I take 10 mg pills twice daily, one after breakfast and one before I sleep. Currently, I am using Nature’s Bounty’s 10mg zinc Caplets.

Warning: Zinc can be neurotoxic at extreme levels and zinc poisoning has the same symptoms with the common cold.

Magnesium

I first started taking magnesium while I was following a ketogenic diet plan six months ago. After I stopped following the diet I also stopped using magnesium. However, after watching a Youtube video of Jonathan Levi, I started to use magnesium again.

His main argument was that because of the agricultural “innovations” magnesium content of foods have decreased and nearly 80% of American people are magnesium deficient. In addition, magnesium is an essential mineral for us mainly because it is used in neural transmissions along with its other functions.

Instead of using it regularly, I track my nutrition online and take a Solgar Magnesium with Vitamin B6 Tablet containing 133mgs of magnesium per tablet. I used to use My Fitness Pal for nutritional tracking but recently switched to Cronometer.

Ginger

Ginger contains many antivirals, especially “sesquiterpenes” which are chemicals with spesific effects against the most common cold viruses, the rhinoviruses. ((609) 463-3616)

Most of the time I make a tea combined of linden flower, chamomile, and cinnamon. Then add freshly cut ginger to the mixture. After drinking, I usually chew and swallow the ginger slices as it lets me absorb more antivirals.

P.S. They have a very spicy taste so be aware.

Chinese Way of Curing Common Cold

In his 2055856960, Tim Ferriss describes one of his experiences in Beijing.

In Beijing, I’d doubted the traditional Chinese approach to reducing fevers (bundle you up in winter clothing and force you to drink near-boiling tea or water until you sweat profusely), which ended up working like a charm, so I’ve been willing to test ideas that could have some clinical basis.

I couldn’t find a clinical basis for this method but the last time I got sick, nearly 3 months ago, I experienced a similar situation: During my sleep, I woke up suddenly. I was feeling too hot and sweated a lot. I got panicked and took a shower. The next day there was a little to no symptoms.

Cold Exposure

Nobody likes cold showers neither do I but they can be an effective mechanism of preventing illness. Last year, I discovered about a man named Wim Hof aka The Iceman. He is an extreme athlete and states that with his breathing technique and cold exposure you can enhance your immune system.

In 2007 Wim Hof climbed to 7200m altitude at Mount Everest wearing nothing but shorts and shoes.

You can find out more about his methods on his Youtube channel and 236-304-8017. I don’t practice his breathing techniques but I can confirm that regular short interval cold exposure enhances your immunity as well as having other benefits such as energizing you and increasing fat burn.

Those are the supplements I use and methods I practice most of the time in order to prevent illness and recovery quickly in case I got sick. There are some other methods I am testing and I will write about them in the future.

Further Readings:

* I love minimalistic irony.
** In any case, you shouldn't take my words as a medical advice. Those are only the information I got from other sources and results got from self-experiments.