Robert Vinet

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Happy Father’s Day » Thank God for Weird, Wild, Outdoorsy Dads

To celebrate Father’s Day 2019, Outside Magazine asked its editors to tell them their favourite stories of their dads in the outdoors. Here’s what they had to say.

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Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World

I’m definitely a generalist. I have a lot of interests and always wanting to learn. The downside is that having so many varied interests can be frustrating trying to keep current.

David Epstein, writing in the New York Times:

Are you a generalist or a specialist? Do you strive for breadth or depth in your career, in your life? After all, you can’t have both. Your time on earth is finite, as are your energy and attention. If you concentrate on doing one thing, you might have a chance of doing it really well. If you seek to do many things, you’ll taste a wider variety of human goods, but you may end up a well-rounded mediocrity — a dilettante.

Folk wisdom holds the trade-off between breadth and depth to be a cruel one: “jack-of-all-trades, master of none,” and so forth. And a lot of thinking in current pop-psychology agrees. To attain genuine excellence in any area — sports, music, science, whatever — you have to specialize, and specialize early: That’s the message. If you don’t, others will have a head start on you in the 10,000 hours of “deliberate practice” supposedly necessary for breakout achievement.

But this message is perversely wrong — so David Epstein seeks to persuade us in “Range.” Becoming a champion, a virtuoso or a Nobel laureate does not require early and narrow specialization. Quite the contrary in many cases. Breadth is the ally of depth, not its enemy. In the most rewarding domains of life, generalists are better positioned than specialists to excel.

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The Literal Translation Of Every Country’s Name

Instead of calling countries by their proper names, like “Canada” and “Spain,” this article on Digg calls them by their literal translations. Canada translates to “The Village” and Spain is “Land of Many Rabbits.”

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88-Year Old Rafael Covarrubias Still Tends Bar in a Tux, and He Wouldn’t Have it Any Other Way

Tess Barker writing for Los Angeleno:

Tonight, Covarrubias’ bar is full of diners, and he tends to them as he has done for the last 36 years — and prior to that, another 36 years at the Sheraton in Glendale. It’s nearing the end of the month, which means diners are coming in solo to cash in on their birthday meal. Members of the Pacific Dining Car’s 1921 Club get a free entree on their birthday.

“My birthday is coming up next month,” Covarrubias says. He’ll be turning 88. “Actually, I hate birthdays. They always give me a bunch of clothes. I don’t know where to put those clothes.”

“They,” presumably are the four women he lives with: his wife, his step-daughter, his granddaughter and his great-granddaughter.

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The Muslim Drink

This is my drug of choice… Continue reading

Amsterdam to ban all petrol and diesel cars and motorbikes by 2030

Diesel cars older than 15 years will be barred from the Dutch capital next year.

Daniel Boffey writing for The Guardian:

“Pollution often is a silent killer and is one of the greatest health hazards in Amsterdam,” said the councillor responsible for the city’s traffic, Sharon Dijksma, announcing the municipality’s decision.

From next year, diesel cars that are 15 years or older will be banned from going within the A10 ring road around the Dutch capital.

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What Would Life Be Like If We Only Did What Is Necessary? » Niki Lauda

A childhood hero of mine has passed away.

“A lot of people criticize Formula 1 as an unnecessary risk. But what would life be like if we only did what is necessary?”
» Niki Lauda

» Andreas Nikolaus “Niki” Lauda was 70.

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The Toaster that Costs $270 and Makes Only One Slice at a Time

The obsession with the perfectly toasted slice of bread.

Reed Stevenson writing for Bloomberg:

Perfectly made toast isn’t just an obsession in Japan. It’s a business opportunity.

Over the past few years, there’s been a quiet boom in the pursuit of expertly reheated bread, from high-end toasters and premium loaves, to cafes catering to connoisseurs seeking that satisfying crunch.

Joining the fray is the next best thing for sliced bread, a toaster designed for just one task: making a single piece of toast, flawlessly. Made by Mitsubishi Electric Corp., better known for its workaday refrigerators and rice cookers, the Bread Oven hit store shelves last month, retailing for about 29,000 to 30,000 yen ($270). While that might seem expensive, Japanese consumers are already used to paying top price for toasters; the popular Balmuda, which debuted a few years ago, sold for about $230.

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The Bob Emergency

This video explains that more than 10,000 people named Bob have entered the world of sports. Yet today, only nine remain.

Jon Bois states that Bobs are special people. IMHO, he’s correct. He goes on to explain that losing the few remaining Bobs to retirement, we stand to lose more than we might imagine.

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The Economic Reason Young People Are Having Less Sex

Compared with previous generations, American millennials don’t buy homes and cars, or drink alcohol at the same rate. Perhaps most striking, they have less sex. This piece argues this is due to millennials’ low risk tolerance.

Allison Schrager writing in Quartz:

Relationships are risky. You might find deep fulfillment, or get rejected. A casual relationship could turn unpleasant, the other person may get too attached, you may get too attached, and there could be a messy break-up. Going on a first date can be awkward, uncomfortable, wonderful, or any other number of things. There is evidence that millennials may be less inclined to take these risks. They date less, despite technology that enables them to meet more people, and are slower to marry or be in long-term relationships. All of this results in less sex.

Some commentators and economists speculate that millennials are more risk averse than previous generations. This is hard to generalize. But one thing sets millennials apart from previous generations is that they benefit from a higher risk-free return from not leaving the house. When TV was boring and video games were rudimentary, you had to go out into the real world for the best entertainment and stimulation, both good and bad. No longer. Now everyone can live what feels like an entertaining life without taking the risk of leaving the house. Binging prestige television shows or playing immersive video games is almost guaranteed to be a pleasant evening—Tinder offers no such promises.

And

But like avoiding risk in any other markets, the benefits are limited. Taking risks is how we get more from life and move forward. A evening spent with Netflix may feel good in the moment, but a lack of social interaction may ultimately contribute to loneliness and anxiety.

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