Comstock BTSF Newsletter #4
The Motivation Edition
Good morning everyone, and welcome to the weekly Comstock BTSF newsletter where I unwind my spindle and share interesting things with you. This weeks theme is motivation.
When I was training for my first marathon, I would typically listen to podcasts or audiobooks but occasionally needed a kick in the ass to get me over the hump (running 17 miles in 90%+ humidity can do that to you). While searching for pick-me-ups, I found Akira the Don, who sets motivational speeches to electronic music. On The Path, he utilizes one hour of Jocko Willink’s speeches to create a “get your ass” moving assault on your ears.
Much of Akira’s stuff will get your inner Rocky to immerge, but this album was exceptionally energizing. Put it on during your next workout.
Many studies claim to show a connection between consuming a small amount of alcohol and various health outcomes; however, studying lifestyle choices is an inherent challenge because restricting a study of this sort to a single variable is impossible.
Now, a study from Oxford purports to show that alcohol consumption increases biological aging on a genetic level by damaging telomeres. Telomeres are the chromosomal equivalent of the little plastic ends on shoelaces that keep the strands together. It is believed that as telomeres shorten, increased damage is caused to cells when they divide, which, at least in part, causes aging.
The study combined participant self-reporting on alcohol consumption with a genetic evaluation technique called Mendelian Randomisation.
The findings suggest that excessive drinking does lead to a reduced life span at the genetic level. The precise level of consumption varied based on the testing method used, but the results were the same utilizing both.
The study lead, Dr. Anya Topiwala, said:
‘These findings support the suggestion that alcohol, particularly at excessive levels, directly affects telomere length. Shortened telomeres have been proposed as risk factors which may cause a number of severe age-related diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Our results provide another piece of information for clinicians and patients seeking to reduce the harmful effects of excess alcohol. Furthermore, the dose of alcohol is important – even reducing drinking could have benefits.’
If you are drinking more than a couple of drinks a day, this may be another motivating factor in reducing your drinking or eliminating it entirely.
I have always been a curious person and an autodidact, so growing up as a latch-key kid, I spent much of my alone time reading. However, I was not a good student because I either didn’t care about the drivel I was being taught, or the teaching methods were utterly inept.
I was required to sit through innumerable classes, such as trigonometry, calculus, chemistry, or any other STEM field, which I knew would not be relevant to me the second I left the classroom after the final (in fact, less than 7% of Americans work in STEM-related fields). To further tighten the schooling vice around my teenage head, even topics in which I was interested, primarily English and History, lost their appeal (to think the point of learning history is to memorize the month that the Battle of Vicksburg occurred during the Civil War is beyond frivolous).
It takes a special type of failed system to take a kid who loves to learn and make him hate school. This is my rambling way of saying, I am a huge advocate of school choice.
If you’re also a proponent of a system that allows kids to opt out of government schools (which I suspect most of my readers would be), there is no better person to pay attention to than Corey DeAngelis. Corey is a Senior Fellow at the American Federation of Children, along with being involved with a variety of other Libertarian-esque organizations. Corey’s tagline is “fund students, not systems,” and he has spearheaded efforts all over the country to do just that. He wants to ensure a student’s wants & needs are put upfront by having the funds earmarked for their education follow them and not blindly put into a predetermined government school, which the student is locked into based on their zip code.
I get pumped when I see an update from Corey about new state laws that allow students to seek out the right type of education for their needs and wants.
If you care about school choice, there is no better person to keep you abreast of what’s happening in the movement than Corey.
If this 1,000,000,000 calorie Reese’s barbeque sandwich the Kansas City Royals are serving at their games doesn’t motivate you to workout, I don’t know what will.
Have a great rest of your week everyone!