Bob Cavezza's Blog


My wife liked something I said on twitter! Well, it was actually a retweet.

Why am I mentioning this? For one, I didn’t know my wife followed me closely on Twitter. That means I have at least 1 fan. Two, it reminds me of a story. A few years ago, my wife came home excited from a day at graduate school. She told me all about her “Lunch-e-on”. Yup, the word is pronounced “Lunch-in”, but she pronounced it “Lunch-e-on”. We had a good laugh about it. I still joke with her about it to this day. I didn’t think about “Lunch-e-ons” when I first retweeted that Morgan Housel tweet, but I do now.

Being Sick

I was sick today. It sucks when you don’t feel great. You lay down for long periods of time. You aren’t as productive as you usually are. You watch a movie instead of reading a book. Liquids. Chicken noodle soup. Emergency. Hot tea. Hot bath. Cuddle time with the dog. That was most of my day today – plus a little reading and writing.

Deconstruction and Extraction

I did a more work on This American Life’s format in a further attempt to deconstruct the show.

I found another way they use audio in the This American Life – getting a person to read a letter out loud. This is from the Marines/Gilmore Girls episode. Ira has a solider read a letter he mailed to the creator of the show.

I also noticed that Ira really does following the idea from copywriting. I’m going to call this idea Copytelling – it’s the intersection of techniques used in copyrighting and storytelling. Copytelling is when you use the technique of telling a story by determining the next thing you say as the thing that will keep your audience most engaged.

In the Gilmore Girls episode, Ira goes into a tangent with the soldier about the show – specifics about storylines and conflicts – which soldiers sided with which characters in certain disputes. Ira mentions he is also a fan of the show and has very specific opinions about the show. It’s fascinating that Ira Glass watched Gilmore Girls – and then discussing specific aspects of the show with this marine – it kept me engaged.

The main story they tell does not start until 8 minutes into the episode. The reason is because these tangents in the story are so interesting, that they just pull you in and keep you listening. This is copytelling! Dan Carlin does this a lot if you’ve ever listened to an episode of Hardcore History.

Memory Palace

I’m reading Moonwalking With Einstein – a book about memory. I just finished the chapter about the Memory Palace. In The Memory Palace memorization technique, you imagine a specific place that you know well and can visualize – a typical example is your childhood home – this becomes your “palace”. Then u take a list of things to memorize and you place them in a specific locations in your palace.

For example – imagine you want to memorize a shopping list. You would imagine your childhood home and a route you would take walking through it. Along the route, you would place items on your shipping list. You put a loaf of bread in the mailbox, a bag of oranges on your front door, and a pound of turkey on the table.

I followed along with the book and was able to memorize a mundane list of 15 random items. The key is to make these items stand out. Make them weird. Give them voices, personalities, motions, movements – make them stand out from any random item you would encounter on a day to day basis. Try to imagine what the items would smell like, feel like, and taste like.

One example in the book is remembering cottage cheese. It places a tub of cottage cheese next to your front door of your childhood home. Instead of just thinking of cottage cheese, imagine Claudia Schiffer laying in a tub of cottage cheese dripping with dairy. Claudia Schiffer laying in a tub of cottage cheese dripping with dairy is much harder to forget then just a packet of cottage cheese.


I’ve been reading Zealot by Reza Aslan. It’s a really interesting read. The negative is I don’t like discussing religion, so I have largely stayed away from discussing key points on this blog.

What I will mention is how interesting it has been to read this book after listening to Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History. It gives me a lot of knowledge about Rome during this time period (parts of the book is how Rome handled Jerusalem).

I’m also really intrigued by the study that went into this work after hearing Dan discuss the difficulties in researching topics where many resources don’t exist. In this case, there was a lot of written word about Rome during this time period, but almost nothing about the early life of jesus outside of the gospels. How Mr. Aslan pieced this book together would be an interesting read in itself.


§752 · January 16, 2017 · Daily Digest · · [Print]

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