The Cost of Living

Why Economics is So Fascinating to Me 

Economics, money, the sociological and the philosophical aspects of it are endlessly fascinating to me. 

The cost of living

Certainly there are certain things which undoubtably make life better. For example, having money and purchasing power to buy good coffee, good meets, having some sort of basic car that could take you from point A to point B.  Also, having enough money and economic power and may be freedom of time to have children, and also raise them yourselves.

Also there are certain things which indubitably make life better, for example having economic power dictating where, when, and how long to live somewhere.

For example, certainly far superior to live in Los Angeles during the summertime, rather than to live in Siberia during the winter time.

The use of money?

Also certain things which are useful, like having a fast Internet connection, being able to pay for fiber Internet or whatever, and also having certain devices which make photography possible.

For example, money to purchase your digital camera, having some sort of iPad or laptop to download and upload your photos from, and also being able to pay for your website and server bill.

But beyond this, what is the use of money?

Health and fitness

Another thing that money is good for is paying for your gym membership, your yoga membership, or having money to just purchase your own weightlifting equipment. 

The Future of Street Photography

Ever since I was an 11, 12-year-old kid in Bayside Queens New York, getting my first Acer aspire computer, AOL 3.0… With my 38.8 K modem, I’ve always been passionate about technology.

Why? When you’re a kid, with no money resources or power, you could essentially play god.

For example, the great democratizing power of the Internet especially in the early days was being able to pirate video games in programs online for free, something which is very useful to an 11-year-old without any money.

For example, in the early days you would visit these AOL “cerver” or “server” rooms, you would message about, and it would send you an email about 30.roar files, each taking about a day to download, and finally at the end of 30 days you could download all the packages of the original grand theft auto, and you play it on your computer!

Also, the early days of pirating for Adobe Photoshop. No way in hell could 13 year-old kid afford a $500 piece of software. Getting cracks for these apps was a godsend.

Platforms

Currently speaking, the only good place to share photos on the Internet is arsbeta.com — Facebook, Instagram is a wash. We already see Instagram trying to morph and to be coming the next TikTok; and also the flood of advertisements, which I consider metaphorical pollution.

The threat of AI

The way I think about artificial intelligence is that it is just like a really really good bot, robot, chat bot etc. 

Where are things become a little bit concerning is when ChatGPT 4o– the voice ability becomes so good, it literally becomes indistinguishable from a real human voice.

Honestly I think the best way to think about the Internet is that 99.9% of the user accounts, comments, activity might just be bots. For example, when I used to use Reddit back in college, I don’t even think I had a username. And I used it religiously for almost about four years, I quit using Reddit in about 2011.

As a thought experiment, imagine if all of these credits, sub credits, etc. we’re just all ChatGPT powered bots. The same goes with Twitter accounts, Instagram accounts etc.

For example, open AI sora, the new video generation tool is insanely good. Certainly within 30 years it will be so good that it will probably be more creative than a real life videographer. Even now the beta versions, blow my mind.

The future for creativity

On one way, we could think about AI, ChatGPT as just a simple implementary tool, a kin to using Microsoft Excel, Google search, etc. However, I think the big issue here is that especially at the university level, apparently a lot of kids even UCLA undergraduate students, who are supposed to be creme de la crop of the public system, our lazily using ChatGPT to read documents and come up with lame responses. 

I think what nobody is really thinking about right now is that ChatGPT might be the university killer. Why go to university, and try to “hack “the university experience by having ChatGPT write your essays?

And this is the thing, professors can tell when you are using ChatGPT or not, but certainly within a decade or two, by the time Seneca is about to go to college, and Chachi tea is on version 15 or 16, ChatGPT will probably write a better essay then even the most accomplished Academic researcher.

Reality

Cindy had an interesting idea that perhaps the future will just be embodied reality. For example, after all of this digital malaise, we will just want to do things in person more.

For example, Cindy Seneca and I just got a library card for Los Angeles, and we have been visiting libraries for fun. The good thing is a lot of libraries have a playground right next-door, which means you could kill two birds with one stone.

If you think about productivity and efficiency, there is really no good reason to go to a public library. Yet I think it is almost like the noveau privilege;  if you have enough free time to take your kids to the public library in the middle of the day, it is assigned that you’re either really rich and successful or self owned and free.

Also librarian; I recently talked to Jennifer one of the local children’s librarians, and she has selected a bunch of great children’s books for Seneca, age appropriate. 1 billion times faster and more efficient than having to rummage through probably fake Amazon reviews.

And also this is the biggest issue with Internet; how do you know whether Amazon is real or fake?

Photo as art

My personal vision for the future of Street photography is it will be less about iPhone, more about just experiencing embodied reality. 

For example, if I were Tim Cook or the CEO of Apple, I would immediately chop down apple Vision Pro. It is big heavy, hurts your head, hurts your eyeballs, and I personally wouldn’t even use it if you gave it to me for free.

The simple strategy is that Apple should just focus on the iPhone insanely great again.

If anything, better corporate strategy would just be introduced a $2000 iPhone, at $1999, and just get rid of the Apple Vision Pro.

Question– can you throw an M series chip into an iPhone Titan?


Problems

Currently even the newest model of DALL-E or ChatGPT,  image generation for photos are too goofy. Not realistic or creative enough.

However, within 10 or 20 years, I’m sure that ChatGPT will be able to perfect the ability to make street photos, with greeny black-and-white film, better than Henri Cartier-Bresson. Which then leaves us the question;

What’s the point of you shooting photos?

First, it is fun. I don’t think we should overthink this. If you’re out shooting street photography and you’re not having fun, you’re doing something wrong. Just observe a child at the playground, a new playground; see how much joy they have in discovery, They’re not waiting for random people to like their performance at the park, they simply do it for fun.

Second, physiological and mental benefits. Post Covid, when it looks like 90% of the workforce in the tech world has migrated indoors and from home, it looks like most people don’t really leave their apartments much. What is the new privilege? Just leaving your apartment or house!

I think this is why the explosion of dog adoptions was so beneficial during Covid, it forced people to go outside and go on a walk with their dogs!

I suppose the benefit of having children; to me the most cruel technique of raising children is forcing them to be indoors at home all day, never letting them go outside. In fact, the new sign of privilege for a child is how tan they are, how muscular and tall and buff they are. Because it is a sign that they actually go out and play on the playground!

Travel

Travel, traveling could be as abstract or practical as you would like to think. For example, you could just go on a road trip, drive 30 minutes somewhere or an hour somewhere, you could jump on the metro and go somewhere, essentially just go somewhere that is not your workplace or your house.

I also think it is wise to be economical about; display economy, find cheap tickets on kayak.com or Google flights.

For example, I just took my mom some airline tickets, and she is able to fly round-trip from Seoul international ICN Incheon airport to LAX for only $500! And this is round-trip! About the same price as a trip to Costco.

Money for movement

Another thing I see — people blowing money on cars SUVs trucks, overland vehicles, Teslas new electric cars etc., better to just stick with your 2010 Prius or the beater you got, fix it up a bit, get a car wash, and just go on adventures instead!

Any sort of movement is good. When money could be your helper in getting you to move around, it is good. 

Technique?

So I think one of the practical ways to get joy from street photography is the active shooting the photos, the joy of witnessing your photos, the joy of capturing a great moment etc. For example capturing the smile of your child, or capturing a good decisive moment in street photography of strangers, or even a good interaction you had with a stranger.

First, all forms are legitimate. In the world of ChatGPT and artificial intelligence, let us not worry whether photos are good or not, let us worry ourselves with whether the photos are meaningful to us or not.

For example, composition is all subjective; what makes a good composition is often philosophical, and if the photo puts a smile on your face, it is a good photo. 

The Human Vehicle

What is the ultimate mobile human device or vehicle? The human body.

First, once again… I think we spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about our cars our vehicles etc. Also kids are endlessly fascinated by vehicles, especially construction vehicles, if you have ever seen a huge excavator up close in personal, it will amaze you.

We are wow’s by  vehicles, of all shapes sizes and forms. For example, any luxury or foreign or exotic car, we are impressed by it. Why? It is a token of how rich or successful you are.

But this is the grand irony; any time you spend on a vehicle, is money you could otherwise put into bitcoin, which has historically been going up 50% every year. That means the $100,000 Tesla you buy today, could be worth $1 million in the near future.

Or even worse, let us say the $250,000 Lamborghini nearby today, that could be worth $2.5 million just a few years from now.

Why?

One of my turbo thoughts of this morning is towards the telos of living a good life: 

1. First, having at least one kid.

I think especially as a man, we all desire at least one male heir. Therefore, if your first born child was a son, consider yourself infinitely blessed. After that, life is all upside no downside.

I think the reason why this is so critical is having a kid is almost like having an expansion pack; imagine if we had to be stuck in the original StarCraft for our entire lives without Brood war. Or if we had to spend our entire lives playing Diablo, the first one, without Diablo two, or without any expansion packs. Or if your entire life you had to be stuck with the original iPhone 3GS.  or if your entire life you had to be stuck on Windows Vista.

I think the grand joy of having a child is that you have the ultimate extension of yourself. Often when you look at kids, they are essentially a mini embodiment of their parents. There features, their physiological features, their behaviors, addictions etc. For example, whenever we lament the fact that all their kids are on YouTube and iPhones all day, just look at the parents; they are on their phones and watching YouTube all day as well. 

Anyways, people want to change the world blah blah blah, reduce their carbon footprint blah blah blah, built a coin dollar company whatever. Better to build $1 trillion kid.

2. Your body doesn’t lie

I think the big thing is in regards to theories, theories don’t really matter, the physics of your body your human human body is what matters the most.

For example, all these people say that running or whatever is healthy for you, but look at all these people who run, they essentially look like dying gazelle.

Even guys who into CrossFit, truth be told none of them actually look that fit; they have some level of fitness, but most of them look like a bunch of skinny kinda fit involuntary celibate guys who spend way too much time on Reddit, being formed Nazis, trying to explain to the worldwide they power clean form is superior to yours, and why you’re dead lift and squat form sucks, yet they have skinny hairy legs, and have never even seen 10 plates before. 

Assuming the person is not taking steroids or other weird hormonal shifting stuff, if somebody is doing something, which may seem unorthodox or contrary to your worldview, but it looks like it is working in real life, they are probably onto something.

3. Movement is medicine

One of these funny Lululemon shirts that I got has this motto printed on the inseam that says movement is medicine. Sounds kind of cheesy, but I think it is true.

The purpose of the human brain is to move. To coordinate movement. Therefore a human body which does not move, has no need for a brain. My personal theory on why people get all these mental brain diseases and the depression etc. because they don’t move. They do two Critically detrimental things: first, they are sitting on their butt all day, doesn’t matter if you’re sitting on your butt in a Lamborghini or a Ferrari, you are essentially amended child, a man baby in a stroller with lots of horsepower. They are also on their chairs when in the office or at work. or even if you are using a standing desk, the problem with standing desks is that you are also static. Certainly standing is better than sitting, but walking is 1 trillion times superior to being static.

If you think about it, what is K-12 education? Forcing kids not to move around and to be dynamic, as kids naturally are.

In fact, I’m starting to notice that a lot of activities which include even arts and crafts are bad and so far much as when kids are doing it, they are typically indoors, which is bad for their health, and also, they are static.

Even my critique about Legos; people say that Legos are good for your creativity but not quite; much of the ethos of Legos nowadays it’s just being really really good at following directions, and building the prepackaged model.

Better to just give a kid a bunch of random bricks and have them build whatever they want; but even this, isn’t it better for your kids to get really good at climbing, being physical, and physical strength instead of just being really creative?

4. Opportunity cost

There are lots of practical optimization we must make in modern day life. One of them is driving.

For example, probably one of the greatest blessings to marry is Amazon, Amazon prime, same-day delivery etc. Even apparently Costco does it now too! 

I think the big issue here is that 30 minutes of driving, one hour driving, is otherwise time you could be spent walking, thinking, moving in a multi directional plane.

For example, one thing that nobody ever talks about is the benefit of walking that you could just go wherever you please. Go up the curb down the curb, into a random street and alley etc.  The downside of driving is that you must just drive one direction, and stay on the path. No freedom.

5. Just snap your fingers and zap it

It is 1 billion times more difficult to sell some thing or get rid of something then to buy or purchase it.

For example, very very easy to buy a car, very very difficult to sell car. Especially a used one. 

I think this is where bitcoin is so appealing to me, because of how portable instantaneous and easy it is; one of the big issues with objects homes real estate in general is that first, it takes a very very long time to sell some thing, there is a lot of arbitrage back-and-forth, a lot of hidden costs, And also, headaches and annoyances.

Also, like my friend Don Dylan told me about his Porsche 911 GT3 –

I think we like the idea of owning something more than we actually do having and owning it. 

Let me give you examples; I love cyber truck, to me, it is the best vehicle ever created up until now. To me it is the most revolutionary vehicle ever created. It is by far the most dominant vehicle on the road, even more than any loser Ferrari or Lamborghini; it is all American, And it destroys almost any other vehicle in stature, height, design, the stainless steel XO skeleton body, and also the 2.6 second zero to 60 time.

At the Culver city Toyota dealership in which I live, there is a brand new cyber truck that somebody traded in, apparently the guy traded it in for a Toyota Sequoia instead. Anyways, part of my daily morning walk and routine, I always walk by it, and it always puts a smile on my face. But, the great joy is that I don’t need to actually purchase it or own it to glean the delight from it. 

In fact, sometimes I wish that I could just snap my fingers, and automatically just have a different vehicle based on my mood my schedule etc.

For example lately I’ve been doing a lot of family trips with my niece and nephew, and Cindy‘s mom, and sometimes I wish I had seven seats. But I don’t need seven seats all the time.

Therefore in this situation, I wish I could just snap my fingers in that my Prius would magically transform into a minivan, or if I could also snap my fingers and it would be a really good sports car or whatever.

Anyways, with cars and vehicles, unless you have over two kids, unless you have 3, 4, or 5 kids, maybe still for now… It is best to stick with a 2010 Prius. 

Monetary vehicle?

I’ve been contemplating on purchasing real estate, but the big issue is that real estate is not a vehicle, it is not mobile.

For example, I cannot take my $2 million Culver City Los Angeles property, single-family home, snap my fingers and then suddenly take it with me to Cambodia.

Similarly speaking, once again, the downside of purchasing any electric vehicle whether it be a Tesla or whatever is that it is a sinking ship. Batteries do not hold their charge very much, I think the half-life is about 2% or so. Therefore, if you also consider the overall battery health, the big issue here is that it loses overall battery charge capacity overtime. Kind of like your MacBook Pro laptop from 2017, which only lasts for about 30 minutes.

 I think this is where it is still intelligent to have a hybrid vehicle like a Prius; given the fact that the overall battery health will die overtime slowly, at least you could still rely on the gasoline engine. And whether we like it or not, at least for the next 20 or 30 years, I am still certain there will be gas stations on the road.

Why?

One of the thoughts that I have about work, their economy capitalism etc. is that essentially your sacrificing your body, your bodily health and freedom and exchange for money.

For example, really matter whether you working at McDonald’s, whether you work at Amazon or Apple, typically you are confined and send some sort of chicken cage, with fancy LED uploading and what not, enforced to use your brain in your muscles in your body in order to perform some sort of work which has economic value. as a consequence, any minutes spent indoors and stuck within a cage is positively bad for you; Silicon Valley I think this is the new “digital handcuffs”– yeah yeah, you want to stop working, but that $500,000 salary a year from Amazon is too good for you to let go. And therefore you will be enslaved for the rest of your life.

I had this thought about two years ago, I’ve just converting all your currency into bitcoin. If you are blessed enough to receive some sort of high salary, I still think this is the best strategy.


What’s the purpose of a human body?

I think the critical question no one ever thinks or considers is what is the ultimate purpose of a human body, your human body. 

Everywhere I look, everyone is in denial about the human body. Either we fall into some sort of religious fallacies about the afterlife, the idea of an immortal soul (I believe in a mortal soul — when you die, your soul also dies). Or even worse, these Silicon Valley fools who want to just upload their consciousness to the cloud or whatever. 

I watched a really bad movie with Keanu Reeves on the plane ones, in which Keanu Reeves is some sort of genius scientist was trying to figure out human cloning, and his whole family tragically dies in a car accident, and he tries to bring them back to life. But essentially the big issue he confronts is that without a human body, you cannot clone a consciousness. And also, an individual consciousness is inextricably connected with a certain human body. As a consequence, no body, no mind. 

What is AI anyways?

erickim.ai

I think people lack the critical understanding of what AI, artificial intelligence actually is. My simple suggestion is download ChatGPT to your iPhone or iPad, get the paid premium subscription, use the newest model, currently GPT 4o– and just go on a roll. 

To me, I consider ChatGPT and artificial intelligence just like a really intelligent Google search. And the more you use it, the less it impresses you.

In fact, I think what people do not understand is that now that openAI and ChatGPT is partnering with Apple, this is very bad news for Google. I think over a long enough time horizon, Google will die, and will be usurped by Apple and ChatGPT/OpenAI. 

In fact, for myself personally, I never touch Google anymore. Far superior for me to just ChatGPT it; first, no advertisements. Now that we have bitcoin, and the incoming of the bitcoin lightning wallet and Satoshi’s, and once Apple or iOS built a native bitcoin or crypto wallet to her devices, The future of payments and money will just be trapped in the Apple ecosystem. Even now, I find using Apple Pay 1 trillion times more convenient than having to take out my physical card. Even an innovation which works insanely well is at Whole Foods with the Amazon one hand scanning thing; it works really well, I think the big Has a chance of people using it is that they don’t know how well it works.

I think on a long enough time horizon, convenience is inevitable and will always win.

***

So what do you want to do with your human body? 

As a man, what is the most precious life force? Your semen.

Your semen is the seed of life, seminal. No seed no tree. No seed, no human beings.

I find a very very bizarre thing of all these weird modern day people and millennials who no longer want to have children because they say it is bad for the planet and bad for the carbon footprint. But let us assume that overnight, everybody decided not to have children because it was bad for the carbon footprint… what would happen to the human race? 

I think a very simple life impetus for the human body is to procreate, have children and be got children. And for this, both man and woman is critical.

In fact, it seems that the optimal strategy here is to conserve all of your money and economic energy possible, and have as many children as humanly possible in this lifetime. 


Capital Thinking

Thinking about capital, capitalism, capital recruitment, stacking capital capital etc.

Bitcoin is digital capital

The first thought: bitcoin is true digital capital.

Wealth is a mental thing?

The second thought:  assuming that bitcoin is the first true digital money and capital, then what that means is money and wealth becomes a mental construct.

For example, let us say that I have 1 million, 1.2 million, 10 million, 100 million worth of bitcoin in my personal crypto wallet. Intelligent thing is to buy and hold it forever, as the value of it will go up indefinitely for the next 1,000 years.  in fact, the wise goal is to use bitcoin like digital real estate; imagine owning a block in the middle of Manhattan or Tokyo, you will never want to give it up. You will fight to the nail to hold it, because you’re thinking very very long-term; thinking your kids kids kids.

According to Michael, optimal strategy is to actually use your bitcoin as collateral, to borrow against your bitcoin, at a low interest rate, and use that to finance your lifestyle which means just paying rent your food etc.

Money

This is a big thing I’ve been thinking about a lot; more and more, I’m becoming even more financially conservative, conserving my money and wealth, not spending it.

The makes is in regards to muscle. Let us see that I am 160 pounds of pure muscle, with a 5% body fat percentage, six pack and all. The worst thing for a weightlifter or a bodybuilder is to lose muscle mass.

Let us say that you buy that thing. Or the thing or whatever; imagine like losing 5 pounds of muscle mass, 10 pounds of muscle mass, or even worse, 20 pounds of muscle mass.

The goal of the weightlifter and bodybuilder is accretive; to continue to accumulate muscle mass, indefinitely.

For example if I am 160 pounds of muscle, ideally I would want to become 165 pounds, 170 pounds, 175 pounds, 180 pounds, eventually 200 pounds, 220 pounds with a 6 pack. 

Certainly there are limits to growth; for example, me at 5‘11“ tall, I think the laws of physics prohibits me from becoming 400 pounds with the 5% body fat, assuming I don’t inject my eyeballs with steroids. Even with steroids it might be impossible. 

Even some of the greatest bodybuilders of all time like Ronnie Coleman; even if he took all the steroids in the world, he cannot become 1000 pounds of muscle mass with a 6 pack.


Limits of growth?

I think this is a primary fallacy in Silicon Valley and beyond; people assumed that all growth is good, and that growth is a good progression.

However the problem here is that often when things become too big, they become fragile, and a positive detriment to your life and lifestyle.

For example, let us say that you buy an eight bedroom eight bath mentioned somewhere in Malibu. Can you imagine trying to clean all those toilets yourself?

Even if you had an army of housekeepers, the constant fear that they’re stealing your stuff, not working hard enough, or being sloppy.

Even the thought yesterday when vacuuming my house with my new Dyson, even in our relatively small two bed one bath apartment, keeping things clean and vacuuming daily is a full-time job. Let alone imagining having to mow the lawn deal with landscaping etc.

Lifestyle “upgrade”?

Don’t think lifestyle think bodystyle.

What is my vision of body style?

First, what your body looks like. There are certain things you cannot change like your height; but beyond that everything is fungible.

For example, your body fat percentage and your muscle mass percentage. These are things you could control.

The easiest way to lose body fat is to start fasting intermittent fasting; breakfast no lunch, only dinner. One insanely massive dinner a day, aim for 3 to 4 pounds of meat.

The greatest thing about this approaches that is free; intermittent fasting is free! It doesn’t cost anything, and also, you save money!

Also, beyond that you save time. For example, the time having to prepare breakfast and lunch, cleaning up, even going out and having to pay seems like a bad idea.

If you are a true Silicon Valley entrepreneurial nut like myself, intermittent fasting makes sense because you remain in peak physical and physiological energy throughout the whole day, without the drowsy food, downside of eating lunch.

In fact, whenever I tell people that I do interment fasting that I don’t eat breakfast or lunch, only dinner, it is actually a very impressive thing to most people. And then people say that it is not “sustainable”, and then I tell them that I’ve been doing it the last six years. And that is very easy. Then people say that it is not possible for them, which essentially means “I don’t want to do it.” But it is a physical, physics based fact that any human being, who is beyond the age of 18 and full adult maturity, would benefit from intermittent fasting. Even the elderly. I think the only people who should not do intermittent fasting is children under the age of 18.

Intermittent fasting could get rid of most people with Alzheimer’s, chronic elements, obesity and weakness etc. And also getting into intermittent fasting could actually get rid of type two diabetes.

And the hilarious thing is there is no risk to intermittent fasting. Like you won’t die. The average human being could probably go 90 days without food, as long as they drink water, you won’t die.

Fat is an organic battery supply for the human body. As long as you have belly fat, fed on your stomach or thighs or whatever, your body will be able to drop on that energy. The human body is not like an automobile gasoline car– no, you do not need to eat something to “fuel” your work out or your physical activity. You could just actively draw it from your fat supply. 

Why stack capital?

Rich people stack capital don’t spend it?

“White people make money don’t spend it, but I’d rather buy 80 gold chains and go ignant (ignorant)”– Kanye West

The ethos of the capitalist and capitalism is to keep accumulating capital for the sake of capital, and the whole ethos of the thing is to keep stacking capital indefinitely.

Stay humble and stack sats (Satoshis, the micro division of a Bitcoin) – Michael Saylor

This seems bizarre to most people. Why? I think for the average worker bee or plebeian in capitalist American society or the western world is to work hard, save money in order to invest it, or in order to spend it.

For example, even to the average “responsible” person, the ethos is to “save up” money to buy a house, etc.

But I wonder how much of this line of thinking is just propaganda that people have not given a critical think about?

Power accumulation?

My personal thought is perhaps the goal here is actually power accumulation.

If we take a “Will to Power” Friederich Nietzsche approach, the sake of power is to use your power to keep accumulating it.

For example, the ethos of the powerlifter is to keep accumulating more and more power, which is typically personified through his or her one repetition maximum, the maximum total weight he or she could lift for a certain lift. 

We also see this in the realm of cars. For example, for men it seems like a big dick measuring contest; whose car has more horsepower? Whose car goes from 0 to 60 faster? Whose car is bigger? Whose car is more lifted off the ground? Whose car is louder?

Obviously the cybertruck is the big swinging silver dick in the room. 2.6 second 0-60 speed for cyber beast. For example, even the Porsche 911 Turbo hybrid has only a measly 2.9 second 0 to 60; the cyber beast can crush it.  not only that, but the cyber truck is bigger, better, more dominant, more impressive.

What is more impressive than a cyber truck? Nothing.

Even kids, they love the cybertruck above everything else. Lamborghini is done. 


For what

The first general thing is freedom. Freedom of time, schedule, mind space etc. What is a simple heuristic of whether you are free or or not? Whether you could go 2 years without checking your email or using email. Or whether you can live without owning a phone.

Also, when you’re in a position in which you no longer need to accept money. 

What loser Marxists don’t get 

For the most part, I think Karl Marx was a loser, and anybody who followed him is also a loser. 

It seems that it is the imperative of the week in powerless to spite and hate those with power. For example, the sheep in the land will forever resent the eagle, whereas the eagle doesn’t really care; the eagle simply enjoys feasting on those delicious little lambs. 

Constructive and positive change

The world is big enough and tolerant enough, for almost everything. Rather than trying to tear things down, far better to be constructive of things.

For example, just leave other people alone, and focus on building what you got.

For example, I find this whole notion of repatriation a bizarre one. Certainly land has been stolen from anyone and everyone; but for the victor to give land back to the defeated, is a law that doesn’t work in physics. 

Personal goals

For example, nobody’s putting a gun to your head and forcing you to work that job you hate, or forcing you to subscribe to Netflix, Spotify, Disney, Disney+, Hulu, etc.

Also, nobody is putting a gun to your head and forcing you to spend money on shoes, clothes accessories etc.

Nonnegotiables in life like paying rent, buying food. But nobody is forcing you to purchase and smoke marijuana, or having to consume alcohol.

People know that it is option that you don’t have to drink alcohol? That even if you meet up friends for a bar, you could just order a sparkling water or a Perrier, or maybe even a cup of coffee instead? 

Also, nobody is forcing you to live in America. People always love to complain that the cost-of-living is too high that rent is too expensive. But don’t you know that you could live in a very nice apartment in Vietnam or Cambodia or Thailand for only $300 USD a month? And most people who don’t have children, and also maybe not married, you have a choice to leave.

Choices

So some simple thoughts:

1. The most critical capital is your body capital.

Let us also not forget that the word comes from the notion “caput”– cap, head. That back in the ancient days of the Iliad and king Agamemnon, a head of cattle was the sign of wealth.  even when describing Athena, and she is described as having hundreds of golden tassels, each tassel being worth 100 head of cattle, you can get a sense of what real wealth was. 

My very simple thought is the most critical thing to build or invest in is your body. Using money for health fitness dietary stuff, food, gym membership or yoga membership etc. Even purchasing your own weightlifting equipment. This is by far the best use of money.

2. Location

Also, the biggest privilege in Los Angeles is which neighborhood you live in. For example living in Culver City, my extreme privilege and joy of having the ability to just walk everywhere without having to jump into a car. This is why we pay $3200 USD a month for rent.

Seeking Dominance in Every Single Shape Form And Way

2.6 seconds — the 0 to 60 speed on cyberbeast.

I think what is so fascinating about cyber truck is that it is dominant in every single shape form and way.

For example, the 0 to 60 speed for that massive is 2.6 seconds! This is much faster than almost every single Porsche 911 car.

Yeah yeah yeah, people might make the argument that a Porsche car is better on the track or whatever. But honestly speaking… Who goes to the track? Nobody.

Also, being really good at racing on the road I think is not really that impressive of a skill anyways. I think sounds fun, as it gets your adrenaline going, it etc.… But for the most part, it doesn’t really matter. Why? Any 5 foot 2 we could drive a car very well, but ultimately in real life, in embodied reality, a small or short man is not impressive.

Where do things matter?

Ultimately standing upright, in the flesh, in embodied reality is what matters the most. 

For example, I’ve been spending a lot of time in Holmby Hills, Beverly Hills, apparently the apex of society success and richness.  and a lot of these guys are actually really really short. Like 5 foot five, 5’4” tall.

I still think one of my most grateful things is that I’m quite tall, around 5‘11“ tall. I think the average man in America is only 5 foot 8 1/2 inches tall.

How and why does this matter?

First, whether we like it or not, we are so driven by our material things. For example, cars, I think for the modern day man, and also perhaps woman,  so much of our time is fixated on buying a new car. Why? Because for most Americans, you actually spend a lot of time in your car; most people unfortunately have to work or go to work, and most people drive to go to work. As a consequence, it is the transportational zone that you best prefer.

Weekend warriors

Also where vehicles are important or desired; most people do not have time off until the weekend, whether Saturday or Sunday. As a consequence, most people want to get away for the weekend, maybe go to the beach, go hiking, go to the nearby city etc. As a consequence , a lot of people also have to drive to get there.  

Your external avatar

Vehicles are interesting, because they are a true externalization who you are, your beliefs, your value systems etc.

Tell me what car you drive, and I will tell you what you value.

For example, I put zero faith in anybody who talks about value, economics, whatever, who doesn’t drive a Toyota Prius. Even a Tesla, if you are truly value oriented, Tesla is not the way. Why? It is certainly the coolest option, but actually not the most practical nor the most economical.

If you really really want to build capital, save money and wealth, and stack, the optimal path is maximum frugality, a maximum Spartan lifestyle, which means essentially just driving a used old 2010 Prius. People often ask me, and I joke… How much I spend a month on gas. I told them that I only spend $38 USD a month on gas!

Living in public takes guts

It looks like there’s this weird race towards virtual reality, augmented reality or whatever. Ultimately, nobody really cares for these things. What we really want is to flex in the flesh, in real life.

For example, this is where people would still prefer to have a real life car instead of a meta-verse car; ultimately we still love physics. This is why we love the roar of the engine, the feeling of torque and responsiveness, moving through time and space etc. For example, visual experience nerve forget is being with Dylan in his yellow Porsche 911 GT three, with a naturally aspirated V6 engine right behind us, accelerating onto the freeway, hitting around 7000 RPM. The roar of the engine is distinct loud and fun, very visceral. 

Kids

Modern day capitalistic consumer, individualistic society is anti-kids. Why? People who have a disposable income, can spend more money on superfluous things, rather than kids. Unfortunately, kids and children is a shrinking market. Let us consider the baby boomer generation in America, which people had 3 to 4 kids. Now it looks like people are having on average 1.2 kids, because people would prefer to have dogs or whatever.

And also, how and why did dogs get so popular all of a sudden? My theory is that modern day man some sort of intimacy or love or compassion or companionship or whatever, without any downside. Humans are messy complex and require courage to interact with. This is why whenever you see any sort of single guy in LA with some sort of wimpy looking stray rescue dog, it is a signal of cowardice. 

This is also how the modern day man lacks social skills; once again, to interact with real life human beings in the flesh is messy, unpredictable. This is where people are confused by me; and I break all the rules, essentially I break the simulation.

Courage is the future

I recently visited the Pacific Palisades Public library, highly recommended a great library. There we got a library card, and in the new book section and I picked up a hardcover book of a new translation of the Iliad by Emily Wilson, I really enjoy it. 

Anyways, when it comes to men, the heroes, it all comes down to courage or cowardice. The only bad or negative attribute of a man is cowardice.

This becomes interesting, because ability strength and dominance is actually not that important. Everybody already knows that Achilles is the supreme and Apex warrior, and nobody is a match for him. Even Hector knows this.

But I suppose when it comes down to it, when it comes down to battle, the question is this;

Will you cower, or confront your fate with courage? 

I suppose this is where Nietzsche gets the motto “Amor fati”– love your fate. Even when we think about when Paris went to battle in the beginning of the Iliad, The true fate should have been he should have been killed.

What is “fate” anyways?

From a truly physics based approach, there is no such thing as speech. There’s no such thing as predestination or whatever.

I don’t think there’s anything fated for you or us or whatever. However a simple observation is that if you never leave your apartment or your house and go outside, if you never adventure, if you never publish anything online, if you never take any sort of economic risks, nothing is going to happen.

Risk & adrenaline

I suppose when it comes down to it, the reason why I am built for investing because for the most part, I have strong stoic armor. I grew up poor, on the verge of being homeless, and also I’ve gone through periods in my high school college years in which I lost all my money. Therefore as a consequence, even though I still am very highly emotional to investments, losses, risk, I think I’m probably at least 30 to 80% less sensitive than average person. This is what gave me the courage and the conviction and the tenacity to invest in bitcoin, and in other crypto currencies.

Becoming?

I like this idea that we are always in a process of becoming. The reason why this is such a radical view is that with the typical American consumer self improvement thing; the generalized idea is that you’re either improving or “dis-improving”.

For example, it runs on some sort of continuum, spectrum, barometer or meter.

For example, I think people think the general idea of 0 to 10, in terms of productivity or whatever. Everyone always wants to be a 10.

However, the reason why this line of thinking is foolish is because the true reality of things is that embody reality is not a binary. Would you call a T-Rex a 10 out of 10? Or a rhino 10 out of 10? How about a chimpanzee monkey or human being?

Technically if you think about human beings, might be the wimpiest creatures on planet earth, yet humans are the Apex predator because of our higher level intelligence, of skills and cunning. For example, even if you took the worlds most dominant fighter, strongman or whatever, he will never be a match for the bull, the gorilla, etc. 

What do human beings strive for or towards?

I think we all strive towards more dominance, power, and supremacy.

For example, going to the Huntington botanical gardens, essentially the tallest trees get the most sunlight, and as a consequence, flower. Unfortunately the short, the shorty guys at the bottom, do not get any sunlight, therefore do not reproduce and do not produce flowers. 

Also at the California science center, when analyzing the biological life exhibit, one of the head scientists said something like “If you look at nature long enough, her primary goal is to procreate”.

So if the purpose or the point of life for us as human beings is to procreate, the funny thought:

How many kids (should) we have?

Back in the day, the more children you had, the wealthier you were. However nowadays, there’s a strange paradox; in the states, it seems that only poor immigrant families are having kids anymore; it is very common to see Mexican or Latino families with three or four kids, whereas the average affluent American tech person is either single, unmarried, no kids, maybe drive some sort of base level Porsche, And maybe have no intention of having any kids. Would prefer to have dogs.

I said this is fine; better for me ! When Seneca grows up, and all of these childless millennials die off, Seneca will reign supreme, and will inherit greatness, and his future progeny shall flourish. 


Courage is the future?

I think the main problem of modern day life is that there are no longer any areas for our courage. The closest thing might be intellectual or political courage, but this is also superficial at best.

I think the first practical way we could exude or exhibit or output courage is through extreme weightlifting. This is where the whole Max philosophy is interesting; until you have attempted a one repetition maximum of a given lift, you don’t know what true courage is.

I suppose other one is hand-to-hand combat; most men, myself included, either have not been in a street fight or a fistfight. I’ve done a lot of boxing when I was in high school, which was good. For the most part, modern day men doesn’t know how to fight. Thus the appeal of fight club.

Also, monitor day man is not allowed to exhibit his feelings, or get angry. To exhibit anger is considered evil in modern day society, and as a consequence you have a bunch of these resentful emasculated men, all antisocial, not sure what to do with themselves.

So what should we do?

First, it seems natural to be social. We make the wrong mistake that we think that humans desire money or whatever. Not true. We desire other human beings.

For example, no human being in his right mind would want to have all the trillions of dollars in the world, if he was forced in solitary confinement by himself.

Therefore a simple takeaway point, human beings make us happy. But I suppose the nuance is we want to interact with other human beings on our own terms?

How to live life?

I think the path to living the greatest possible light is twofold; doing physically active things, and also, being around other human beings.

For example, the reason why I think so many people love traveling is that typically speaking, most people when they are on holiday or traveling, do not just stay in their hotel room all day and just watch Netflix. No. They prefer to go see the sites, to take the subway, and to go on adventures! And meet cool people on the way. 

Also, humans are happiest when we are upright, not sitting in our cars. My simple suggestion is consolidate all that money from your car and put it into bitcoin, which will actually appreciate value overtime, and instead, invest your time energy and money for hiking, walking, taking the subway and going to the local museum, shooting street photography etc.

The last standing photographer

Am I the longest lasting photographer?

First, I still shoot on average 1000 photos a day. Actually the primary issue have right now is that I can’t keep up with reviewing my photos. I need to figure out a solution. But don’t worry, I’m working on it.

Second, it seems that I have been able to stay motivated, despite all of this ridiculous social media stuff. The first and only famous guitar for to have the balls and intelligence to delete his Instagram, at the peak. Now that I have deleted my Instagram, I can truly live forever. 

Third, intelligence with information; it seems that my open source approach has really really been the most smart approach. Why? I own it all, nobody owns it. Or in other words, I own the privilege and the right to keep it open and free; no annoying publisher has control over me. 

Still… Probably one of my proudest and most glorious and courageous decisions that I’ve made in my life, looking back I smile at it; is when I was approached by a publisher to publish my “learn from the Masters“ series, they told me to publish it. And I said only new ones that I wanted to PDF book to be 100% open and free, but they said that was not possible. I said no. Best decision of my life. 

I suppose where people get shortsighted is that they compromise their morals ethics and beliefs in order for some sort of grey notion of success, but in truth, the ultimate success is being ironclad in your own personal ethical beliefs. 

I’ve seen it all, even the death and demise of Google; now with ChatGPT, there is really no more reason to use Google. YouTube is the killer app for Google at the moment, but once PT makes the video production thing open, this will be the death of Google.

Short Google, long ChatGPT.


Now what?

Don’t buy a new car, buy a new license plate. Just order the black and yellow California drivers plates, they look super cool, like Batman.

Also, a simple modification you could do to your car is by some sort of satin paint, and just paint your rims all black. Rust oleum makes a great primer plus paint spray paint, it also looks great in gloss black.

Also, shave off your emblems– the best modification you could do to your car just get rid of emblems.  a funny recent thing that I just did is I put a NASA sticker where my old Toyota emblem used to be. 

Travel

Apparently right now is the best time to travel.  the currency is very weak in Japan, and also turkey Istanbul. If you are paid in US dollars, good for you. Also the Korean WON is weak — go to Korea!

Also, come travel with me to Cambodia and Angkor Wat. Lara Croft and tomb raider style. 

Photo futures?

The future of photography is not iPhone or iPhone Pro. A telling sign; all of the people that I know on the photos team either shoot with the film camera, Rico GR camera, Sony seven camera, a digital Leica, a digital medium format Hasselblad camera, even Olympus cameras! 

If the Apple photos team and engineers aren’t even using iPhones to take pictures, this is a telling sign. 

It’s kind of like the best question to ask whenever you go to any sort of car dealership, or talk to any sort of car salesman. Ask them what car they personally drive.

Same goes with business people and investors; ask them what they are currently investing in.

Same when it comes to meeting your doctor, or your pediatrician; ask them what they would do if they were in your shoes, or ask them what they did for their kids.

For example, a simple workflow for vaccinations and whatever; ask your pediatrician which vaccinations they did for their own personal blood children, and do all of them.

Or another one; ask your dentist what toothbrush, toothpaste they use; and just use that.

Never trust a salesman who sells a car which is contrary to the car they actually drive.

For example, don’t trust any Tesla employees who don’t actually drive Teslas. Also don’t trust any Toyota sales people who don’t drive Toyotas. 

Now what?

Just get your ass outside, make photos, travel, and live your best life!

ERIC


How To Transform Your Body Into a Cybertruck? 

Cybertruck Body?

A funny thought; ultimately, our bodies are supreme. But for us in our modern day capitalistic consumer society, we purchased vehicles which we believe to be an externalization of our own bodies and selves.

For example, why is it that you see so many middle-aged, or older men purchase muscle cars, Corvettes etc.? It is because they have lost their potency, their own real physiological muscle, and they convert their economic energy (money) into these cars.

Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful

I suppose one of my great joys of living in Los Angeles is this idea of social theater and social performance.

What that means is this; if you live in Los Angeles, and walk around, essentially the way you walk, engage on the streets is assigned of who you are.

For example, when we think about fashion, in someways it is some sort of social armor; most people take the cowardly stance and just cover themselves up, limo tinted sunglasses, so nobody could see their eyeballs. Also, they plug up their ears with noise canceling headphones, another point of cowardice, the cover up their heads in their faces with baseball caps, another point of cowardice, and maybe where from close to hide the silhouette of their skinny fat bodies.

Stainless steel exoskeleton

An interesting thought I cleaned from Michael Saylor is that in superhero theory, the best super power is indestructibility. What that means is if your enemy could shoot to an atomic nuke at you, and it cannot kill you, in theory you could just walk around with a machine gun until everyone else dies.

I also suppose this was the appeal of Superman, not necessarily that he could fly, but that theory, he is indestructible. This is why they call him demand of steel; from a metallurgical sciences perspective, apparently steel is the apex metal.

Maybe now it is titanium, but for the most part titanium is too expensive.

Cybertruck goals

I love what cyber truck represents, I love Elon Musk and Tesla, the cyber truck is the baddest, best, most superior and supreme car on the road, may I say, car or automobile which has ever been created in all time.

First, it is practically indestructible. A car made out of stainless steel? You could probably take an AK-47 to it in the hood, people attack it with baseball bats or sledgehammers, and you and your family inside will be safe. I’m not sure what the crash safety ratings are yet, but in theory, I would feel very safe driving my most precious assets in the car inside, which is Cindy Seneca and theoretical other children.  

Second, the height. I think one of the greatest things about cyber truck is the height. First what is actually very interesting is that it is quite high up, but not that high. Not ridiculously high like some of these lifted trucks. In fact it in real life, it is quite impressive in size, but not too big. You could probably park it anywhere.

Third, the geometric shapes, the impossible angles. I think the reason why whenever you see a cybertruck on the road, the reason why it turns so many heads is that it seems to defy physics and reality. Typically in the past we have always thought that the cars were the most aerodynamic had curves, but in actuality, the most superior and the most supreme shapes are perfectly angular, pointed. 

Also a random point about cars, I think for the most part, we could think about feminine versus masculine aesthetics in cars.

For example, for guys who are into cars, they always like to talk about the “curves” of a car, likening it to a female body.  This is where the Porsche car becomes so bizarre and fascinating to me; on one hand, it seems to be a desirable body shape because it has curves that simulate a woman’s body, note that the Porsche Carrera in the car movie, was the girl/woman of the movie. Put on the other hand, it seems to be the prototypical signal or status simple of success for men in LA, to drive a Porsche 911. Not the Porsche 718, I say if you want a Porsche, either get the 911 or nothing. And none of the Porsche SUV cars, or the fake electric cars, they are all essentially fakes; rebranded Volkswagen Toureg cars, or rebranded Volkswagen ID Cars (apparently these cars suck). Volkswagen which produces Audi, Porsche, even Lamborghini… They really do not understand electric nor Hybrid. Let us also consider the whole diesel gate incident with Volkswagen; it seems that the Germans are good at doing is just taking the same old thing, and making a little better, kind of like the Japanese and the whole kaizen process. But the problem with the Germans is that they like radical innovation like their Americans; no way in hell a cyber truck been approved by the Volkswagen automotive group.

Truth be told whenever I go to Germany and Berlin; people feel a little bit stifled there, entrepreneurs hit an upper limit and upper ceiling. They would prefer to be in America instead. 

Even in Sweden, I’ve met a lot of entrepreneurs, but one thing I learned is apparently the tax structure there is too repressive, it makes it too difficult for sole proprietors and entrepreneurs to start off. 

Stainless steel

What is really fascinating about cyber truck is when you see it driving on the road, in full bright sun in Los Angeles. The way it refracts light  is really fascinating; it is really really shiny, but muted at the same time. Not like chrome which is too cheesy, stainless steel is a bit more matte, and subtle.

By the Culver City steps downtown, I actually met a dude who had a brand new cyber truck with the mat black rep street from the factory. It was cool, but I think I prefer the stainless steel;  from a Japanese craftsman aesthetic ideal; the materials must be honest. To wrap some things simply with a vinyl wrap is dishonest because the underlying nature of the material underneath is obscured. And also, the durability of even the best three vinyl car wrap is very poor; maybe three years tops. In theory with stainless steel, and the cyber truck, it will outlast you. 

The ultimate utility?

I like to troll Zillow for fun, looking at home prices, simply for fun and kicks. I don’t actually have any serious plans of purchasing any home for real.

I think a very funny thought is that in theory, cheaper and more efficient and effective to just live in your cyber truck, then purchase a home. It seems that the trunk is big enough.

 the only thing I can predict that might go bad is the battery overtime. But everything else should last practically forever.

Early adopter versus late adopter?

When is it useful to be an early adopter or a late adopter?

Well with bitcoin, or a lot of cryptocurrencies or crypto securities, having been an early adopter was a very good idea. For example, I still remember when I was in Vietnam in 2017, at one of my favorite coffee shops in Saigon; in the Japanese district, on zerohedge looking that bitcoin was $300 and $600 a bitcoin. Then I remember some funny headlines of a guy saying that he would eat his balls live on TV if bitcoin did not hit at least $1000 a bitcoin. 

I got into the game still pretty early, I think 2018, when bitcoin was still only about $6900 a bitcoin.

It’s never too late

People always be on the fact that it is too late to get into stuff; fitness, a new hobby, investing etc. But actually, today is always the best day.

For example, people now think that bitcoin is too expensive, they wish they bought it when it was cheaper. But then again, the people who bought it cheaper wish they bought it cheaper.

Health and fitness; not true. Even my 69-year-old mom started doing hard-core daily yoga with Cindy for a month, and she did it consistently every single day for 30 days straight, and it looks like my mom is not in the best shape of her life.

Also, I’m 36 years old, to my infamous thousand pound atlas lift at the age of 35; I feel like I was 100 times stronger at the age of 35, then even when I was in my mid 20s.

Apparently, when King Leonidas did his last stand against king xerxes and the Persians, he was in his 40s? 

There are also Spartan sayings, real Spartans sayings of Spartans with gray hair in their 60s, still putting on their helmet to go to war.

***