This is the Monday Medley, a newsletter that goes out, you guessed it, every Monday. I republish it here for sharing and referencing, but if you'd like to sign up you can do so right here:
I've been investing more in my YouTube channel recently, and I'm trying to put out 2-3 new videos each week.
Last week, I shared a video of helping David Perell migrate from Evernote into Roam, as well as a video of my process for highlighting important notes in podcasts.
Ali Abdaal also hosted a marathon 2+ hour interview of me. He has a ton of timestamps below the video so you can jump around.
This week's Medley is brought to you again by Sovereignty! If you haven't checked out Sovereignty yet, they're the only CBD based supplement I've been really impressed by. Their Dream product in particular completely lives up to its name of both helping you sleep more deeply, and consistently giving me a wild dreaming experience. As always, they're offering their special guarantee where if you don't love the product, they'll refund you and send you another one of your favorite supplements of your choice.
🛩 I shared some fun stats on Supersonic Jets and the Concorde back in Medley 210, and it looks like Boom Supersonic just finished the first XB-1 Supersonic Jet! They're doing a virtual rollout on October 7th, I can't wait. This is the most exciting thing to happen to air travel in quite a long time.
⏩ Patrick Collison has a great article that asks the question: why have some massive projects moved so much faster than others? A few examples he gives:
"In 1927, Donald Hall and Charles Lindbergh designed and built Spirit of St. Louis in 60 days. "To determine the amount of fuel the plane would need, Lindbergh and Hall drove to the San Diego Public Library at 820 E St. Using a globe and a piece of string, Lindbergh estimated the distance from New York to Paris. It came out to 3,600 statute miles, which Hall calculated would require 400 gallons of gas."
"The New York Subway. The first contract was awarded on February 21 1900. 28 stations opened and general operation commenced on October 27 1904, 4.7 years later. In April 2000, the MTA decided to build the Second Avenue Subway. The first phase, with 3 stations, opened on January 1 2017. "
"Tony Fadell was hired to create the iPod in late January 2001. Steve Jobs greenlit the project in March 2001. They hired a contract manufacturer in April 2001, announced the product in October 2001, and shipped the first production iPod to customers in November 2001, around 290 days after getting started. "
😳 And an embarassingly slow recent example:
"San Francisco proposed a new bus lane on Van Ness in 2001. Its opening was recently delayed to 2021, yielding a project duration of around 7,300 days. “The project has been delayed due to an increase of wet weather since the project started,” said Paul Rose, a San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency spokesperson. The project will cost $310 million, i.e. $100,000 per meter. The Alaska Highway, mentioned above, constructed across remote tundra, cost $793 per meter in 2019 dollars."
🚲 I loved this thread on all the fear and hilarity caused by bicycles when they were first gaining popularity. A few of my favorites from the thread:
Bicycle riding could apparently give you a heart attack:
🤦🏻♀️ And surely it would give women a dangerous amount of autonomy:
😯 Not to mention we might inadvertently chop our own heads off:
The whole thread is hilarious, I definitely recommend checking it out.
🏨 This is an unfortunate story of how Paige Craig lost his opportunity to lead Airbnb's entire seed round. I respect how much he seems to have taken it as a learning experience though. A few of his takeaways:
"The reality is I should have worked my ass off to get in that deal even after YC’s decision. These days when I find a deal I want, I chase it until I’m dead and I almost never believe any deal is definitively “closed” off."
"After getting the cold shoulder, I realized I needed to go out and build some valuable knowledge, needed a more robust network, and needed to craft my own brand as an investor."
"Airbnb also taught me that investors need to act fast. Over the last several years I’ve learned to close deals quickly and avoid the fine print that distracts some angels and VCs."
💭 And here are some nice thoughts from Sam Altman on what makes Y Combinator so special, and why it's been so hard for anyone else to start a competitor. No competitor has YC's most important ingredient.
🛏 I shared some of my favorite sleep tech this week, based on what I'm currently using to help me sleep better.
👓 One new addition in particular is the BluBLOX blue light blocking glasses. These are kinda cool because they actually have a blue light filtering test on their website you can use to determine if your current lenses are filtering the full spectrum of blue light out. Mine failed the test so I got a pair of theirs and have been really happy with them.
🌪 This is a fascinating visualization of how smoke from the west coast collided with tropical storms on the east coast as both spread across the country.
🎃 And now that it's officially fall, "it's decorative gourd season, motherfuckers."
"Guess what season it is — fucking fall. There’s a nip in the air and my house is full of mutant fucking squash... Have you ever been in an Italian deli with salamis hanging from their ceiling? Well then you’re going to fucking love my house. Just look where you’re walking or you’ll get KO’d by the gauntlet of misshapen, zucchini-descendant bastards swinging from above."
As always, if you're enjoying the Medley, I'd love it if you shared it with a friend or two. You can send them here to sign up. I try to make it one of the best emails you get each week, and I hope you're enjoying it.
If you want to support the Medley and my other writing, there are many ways you can do that here.
And should you come across anything interesting this week, send it my way! I love finding new things to read through members of this newsletter.
Have a great week,
Then consider joining the 30,000 other people getting the Monday Medley newsletter. It's a collection of fascinating finds from my week, usually about psychology, technology, health, philosophy, and whatever else catches my interest. I also include new articles and book notes.