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In this issue:
- Product highlights
- Brainpower tip
- Time tip
- Finance tip
- Security tips
- Health tip/Fitness tip
- Great offers
- Thought for the day
1. Product Highlights
Travel and Eat Right|
|People ask me how I travel without
eating fast foods. To the right, you will see a picture of Triple
Delicious athletic bars (deleted in 2009 page review, due to product's
being discontinued. See other bars here:|
Unlike most bars, these are wholesome. I have
looked at nearly every bar on the market, and this is the one I use and
recommend. I will not eat the typical bar, but I will eat these.
|OK, so they're not cheap.
I have only two things to say about that:|
- You get what you pay for. Those cheap bars that
rot your teeth and pack on the fat are cheap for a reason. Triple
use quality ingredients, so they aren't cheap.
- I'm offering our subscribers (and any pass-along
readers) a limited-time deal on these: 10% off.
Just buy a box and try them. At checkout, enter this coupon code (but
not the quotes around it), and you get 10% off:
MINDCENL-BAR10.This offer expires 30JUN2005--this coming Thursday.
2. Brainpower tip
Perhaps you've read about studies that say smoking hemp
(called "marijuana" by the tobacco companies, who want to protect their
oligopoly) reduces your IQ by 4 points. That may be true, but did you know
that multitasking reduces your IQ by 10 points or more? To, in effect, boost your
brainpower, don't do things that lower it! Here are some other things that
lower your IQ:|
- Smoking cigarettes. What the tobacco companies don't
say in their war on hemp is their product trumps that 4 point drop by a
country mile. And smoking cigarettes, like venereal disease, is the gift
that keeps on giving. Reduced blood flow to the brain, combined with copious
quantities of carbon monoxide and benzene, permanently destroys brain
tissue. The next time you look at a carton of cigarettes, think "lobotomy in
a box." It's also "impotence in a box," but that's the subject of a
- Drinking sodas. We all know by now (or should, unless
you've been hibernating somewhere) that sodas are osteoporosis in a can,
esophageal cancer in a can, and diabetes in a can. Exception: "diet" sodas
have not been proven to cause diabetes--however, they still make you fat.
Now, we can also call sodas "stupidity in a can." Suppose you get a sudden
case of "I don't give a sh--" and decide to abuse your body with a
soda. You have just changed your body chemistry to an environment that slows
down your brain. If you have a multi-soda-daily habit now, you'll have
measurably more brainpower if you stop.
- Arguing with people. Some folks claim they are
intellectually stimulated by healthy debate. Therein lies the problem. Most
of us don't debate--we don't follow the mutually respectful rules of debate.
So instead of being intellectually stimulating, it's an exercise in
self-defense in the face of feeling attacked or threatened. The human brain
has evolved over thousands of years, and you can see this if you cut one
apart. It's like a house that's been constantly added onto by the Clampett
Family. You can see the progression of brain structures quite clearly. I was
going to explain all this here, but did a quick search for a reference for
folks who want to know more than a brief explanation can provide. See:
when you argue, you retreat into the more reptilian parts of your
brain--essentially disconnecting yourself from the higher-level, thinking
part. This is why we say and do such stupid and hurtful things when we
bicker with other people.
- Dealing with bureaucrats. As government agencies
and many other organizations bloat well beyond their maximum useful size, they become
infested with parasites called "bureaucrats." These parasites serve no known
purpose. They excel in frustrating people, throwing up roadblocks to
progress, and generally wreaking havoc while pretending they are
heroes. Dealing with these parasites nearly always triggers the effect
mentioned just above. But also, their stupidity itself can be contagious. If
you are forced to deal with these parasites, remind yourself that these
parasites infest the organization you are dealing with. They are not the
organization itself. State what you want, then ask the parasite if s/he is
able to do this small thing or not. If the answer is no, then ask for
his/her supervisor. Don't argue. Just say, "You told me you can't. I don't
want to waste any more of your time. So transfer me now, please." If you
engage with the bureaucrat, you will be taking a trip through stupidland.
Get off that train before it heads down the tracks.
- Watching television. We have machines to wash our
clothes. They are called clothes washers. We have machines to wash our
dishes. They are called dishwashers. We have machines to wash our brains.
They are called televisions. You've heard "garbage in, garbage out?" Your
brain is only as good as what you feed it. Put it on a diet of television, and
you stuff it with disinformation, misinformation, non-information,
and the constant message your life isn't fulfilled unless you are buying
junk that you are better off not having. Interestingly, more and more people
are realizing this and television viewership has been steadily dropping over
the past few years. It wouldn't bother me a bit if it dropped to zero
3. Time Tip
I'm a big fan of scheduling tools. To do lists, the
Outlook calendar, and good e-mail management practices are my primary
tools for this. But some "experts" would look at my schedule and say I
have a lot of wasted time. There are so many empty spaces!|
That's because those folks are experts at process and
not at results.
Consider this example from my experience. I run
several Websites. I could just sit here all day and build pages. But, I
don't do that. I take advantage of the gaps in my schedule just to "free
associate" about things. And that's when I come up with killer ideas.
Later, I implement those ideas. There's a big difference between being
busy and being productive. The first is working hard, the second is
You are not a robot. You need time for those neurons
to fire randomly and for thoughts to percolate. A Webmaster might do the
following things to improve a Website (you can apply the same to whatever
it is you do):
- Take a walk.
- Read a book.
- Take a nap.
- Visit other sites, noting one thing good and one
thing bad about each one.
Notice, the first three have nothing to do with the
actual work. By taking your attention off a given set of problems, you can
allow your subconscious to work on those problems.
So, set some time aside just to think and explore. You will be amazed
at how much time this saves you. You will be amazed at how much this
allows you to make the best use of the time you do schedule.
4. Finance tip
|This tip isn't for your daily finances.
It's a contingency planning tip.
- How would you manage your affairs if you were suddenly blinded? It could happen. A
rock exiting a lawnmower travels at the same speed that a .357 Magnum
bullet does exiting a pistol. Do you wear safety glasses when mowing, as your mower manual instructs you to? Do you protect your eyes if anyone
is mowing within 100 feet of you in open yard space? Don't think this
can't happen to you. It happened to me. I got it in one eye, but it's
possible for a single rock to get both eyes. I'd rather spend the night
at Michael Jackson's ranch than get hit in the eye again with a rock
from a lawnmower.
- What if you fell and hit your head, rendering you comatose for
- What if you were falsely arrested, taken to a holding cell, and were
not allowed any outside communications for six months (yes, this is
happening in the United States)?
The above situations happen more often than we care to admit. As do other types of
incapacitation. In such circumstances, how can you manage your financial
affairs? The answer is you can't. So, you need someone to do that for
you--an executor or agent. And, that person needs a way to access and use
your financial tools and documents.
One answer is to keep these items (or copies) in a safe deposit box.
That assumes that your designated person knows about the box and has legal
access. What's the fix, here? Keep certain of these documents--your will,
power of attorney, health-care proxy--in a location that is not just safe
but also accessible. If you regularly engage an attorney, inquire about
having the attorney hold these for you. But also keep a backup copy
elsewhere--perhaps even at home. If you have passwords for online banking,
etc., you will need to provide those also.
An executor is the person who discharges your estate
(such as it is, right?) after your death. Do not elect a family member as your executor. Grief
clouds people's judgment. Being an executor is also an extra heavy burden
at that time. You can hire an attorney to do this ahead of time, and
that's not as expensive as you might think.
An agent is someone who can act in your stead, with full authority.
This person needs a document called a Power Of Attorney (POA). You should
have an attorney draw this up for you. It needs to state the limits of
your agent. Perhaps this person has POA over your checking account, but
not your real estate. Make it clear.
Create a kit for your agent(s) and/or executor, so these people have
everything they need to do what they are responsible for doing. Just walk
through the various processes they will have to perform, and note what's
needed. Then, put the kit(s) together so they have what they need. Here are some
examples of what you'll need to provide:
- Asset list. Bank statements, brokerage statements, insurance
policies, and so on.
- Deeds and titles. Keep copies of real estate deeds, automobile
titles, and any other property certificates clearly marked in your paper
filing system. If you can scan and store these in your electronic system
and burn a CD of these, all the better.
- File locations. Where do you store your files, and what are their
names? For both paper and electronic paper files, make a constant habit of cleaning
them up and keeping them organized.
- Financial records. Describe debts owed to you, debts you owe, credit card
information, and so on.
- Key contacts. List names and contact information for anyone you deal
with for the care of your home, personal affairs, and business affairs.
Who might these wonderful people be? Accountant, attorney, auto repair center, banker, business partners,
computer shop, customers/clients, dentist, doctor, HVAC firm, insurance
company, and pharmacist. Note: If you are dealing with the American
Taliban, they do not accept death as an excuse. Find a competent tax
attorney to handle affairs, if you have dependents they might come
- Master list. You may not want to, or be able to, keep all of your
documents in one accessible location. So, make a list of where things
are. Give your agent(s) and/or executor this list now, while you are
still able to.
- Safe-deposit box information. Make a kit for this. Include a map (>http://www.mapquest.com)
from your home to where the box is, to save the other person time.
Include a key you have actually tested in the lock. It's also a good
idea to enclose a printout of a document authorizing this person to
access your box--a nice touch is to embed that person's photo in the
All of the above become especially vital if you are a provider for your
family. If you are a homeless person with a six-year crack habit, you
probably don't need to worry about any of this.
5. Security tip
|This will conclude
the mini-series I've been running on secure driving. Well, most likely it
Many of these are things we've all been
told but need to be reminded of. But some may be brand-spanking new to
you. In any case, following all of these will help you stay safe in your
motor vehicle. Then again--if you are a homeless person with a
six-year crack habit, you probably don't need to worry about any of this
unless you steal a car. And if you steal mine, I hope you wrap it around a
OK, back to serious information. Here are my tips:
- Beware of intersections. Where do most collisions
happen? Yep, at intersections. Makes sense, doesn't it? So, be extra
diligent as you approach intersections. Scan ahead, and anticipate what
other drivers are going to do. Keep your left foot over the brake pedal,
but not on it--this is called "covering the brake." If you
tend to "cover the gas" by mistake, then at least make sure you fasten
your seatbelt at all times.
- Keep to a two-second following distance. Now, if
you do this, you will be an unusual driver. Most people
tailgate. Even police, who know better, sometimes tailgate. The number one cause of collisions is not speeding. It's
following too closely! What does this tell you? Put some distance
between your car and the one in front of you. If you don't know how to
judge a two-second following distance, that's a sure sign you are
lacking an entire set of safe driving skills. Get thee to a nunnery. If
that doesn't appeal to you, then sign up for a defensive driving
course--your DMV can probably tell you exactly where to go for one.
Bonus: Your insurance company should give you a discount for having
taken one. If they don't, then switch to State Farm!
- Stretch the following distance. If you're tired,
it's wet outside, it's dark, or you just feel like it's going to be a
bad day--add another second to that following distance. If the car in
front of you is covered in bumper stickers, add another second--because
there's a loose nut behind the steering wheel.
- Chill out on distance. On a trip across I-80's
infamous "black ice" stretch between Iowa City and Des Moines, I kept a
10 second following distance. I found it much faster to travel on the
highway than in the ditch. Maybe it was just my perception, but it
seemed to me the cars that were standing straight up in the ditches,
rear bumpers buried and front tires five feet off the ground weren't
going as fast than I was. If you slow down and keep your distance, you
can safely drive on almost any surface.
- Lose the tailgaters. This is a hard one. What do
you do when someone is tailgating you? First, check your speed. Are you
driving too slowly? Then speed up! Are you driving right at the speed
limit? If it's a cop, slow down and pull toward the shoulder. If
it's a motorist, tap your brakes to signal s/he's tailgating. Most
people will take the hint and back off. Folks who don't take this hint
are simply dangerous fools you can't do anything about. Get out of their
way. As this fool passes you, speed-dial the police and call this in.
Say you are reporting a dangerous and erratic motorist who appears to be
on drugs and may be armed (that's all true). Report the license number,
describe the car, and note the location and direction in which you are
heading. That's how you get tailgaters off the road safely. You stay
safe, you make the road safer for everyone, the cops get to break their
dull routine, and you really put the arrogant tailgater in his place.
What's not to like?
- Road rage? Don't engage! Nobody cares who "wins"
an argument on the road. The driver who is angry and abusive already has
made it clear s/he doesn't respect you. So, you aren't going to win
respect by "fighting back." Don't take a chance on ruining your car or
losing your life. Instead, smile and wave. Get the license number, then
hit the speed dial on your cell phone and report this person.
- Blinded by the light? You're driving at night,
and suddenly oncoming headlights seem laser-focused directly into your
eyeballs. What should you do? Turn your head? No. You just need to avoid
the glare. It won't last long. While they lights are aimed at you, look
down a bit, rather than right at them.
- Know your dash. It's amazing how many people
aren't even looking out the windshield, because they are looking for
a certain control in the dash. You may have learned all your controls and
forgotten. Test yourself once a month.
- Call smartly. Many experts advise not using a
cell phone while driving. I think that's extreme and unnecessary. Here
are my rules for cell phone use--adopt these or modify according to your
own best judgment:
- Program in any numbers you might need to dial.
This makes dialing something you can do without diverting much
attention from your driving. This assumes you have a phone that has a
well-lit screen. If not, pull over to dial.
- Use a headset. You need both hands for driving
and operating controls, especially if you have a manual transmission.
- Let the other party know you are in your car
and moving. This alerts them you may need to totally leave the
conversation and you can't focus heavily on it.
- Keep chatting to a minimum. Conduct your
business, then get off the phone. For example, call your host to say
you are 20 minutes away. But don't call and just chat.
- Keep all calls short. The longer you are on the
phone, the more the call will draw your attention away from the act of
- Do not conduct serious business. One of the top
salesmen I have ever met made this an iron-clad rule. If you try to
drive and conduct serious business, you can't do either one well.
Imagine blowing a big deal and wrecking your car at the same time.
Now, imagine feeling relaxed and sealing the deal, then starting your
car and driving home. Which way feels better?
- Know when to hang up. If a police officer pulls
you over, put the phone away. Ask permission before making a
call--this shows courtesy to the officer, and will go a long way
toward making the situation easier on you. If you are entering heavy
traffic, tell the other party so and end the call--don't wait until
you just about nail the driver in front of you. If the cell system
drops the call, don't keep calling back.
6. Health tip/Fitness tips
In a recent phone call with Howard Jacks (who has
been mentioned here before), we had a hard time understanding each other
because of uncontrollable laughter. What got us going were some
observations we'd shared about widespread misperceptions of the Chinese
here in the USA.|
China's culture goes back thousands of years. Many
things we enjoy today were invented in China. It's a powerhouse nation
that has gone through some rough times in recent centuries. But, they
were an advanced culture with all the trappings--including the
arts--while Europeans were sleeping under the stars and hadn't yet built
The idea that "Chinese medicine" is inferior or
useless is an idea that can reside only in an ignorant mind. It's
laughable. Which is why Howard and I were in hysterics.
One of the more recognized forms of Chinese
medicine is acupuncture. Until recently, this was not well-respected by
the western medical establishment. One reason for this lack of
acceptance is acupuncture is based on
"meridians of energy." Interestingly, Westerners who got their butts
kicked by Chinese martial artists working with these same meridians
began studying Chinese martial arts. But, that's another story.
Now Western science has revealed those meridians
were something Westerners simply failed to understand--and the Chinese were
right all along. Imagine that. With only a 5,000 year lead, they knew
something we didn't. Will wonders never cease?
Acupuncture can treat far more than pain or
addiction, though in the USA you'll find acupuncture used mostly for
just those two things. Allergies, asthma, depression, hay fever, and
migraines also respond well to acupuncture. The cure rate for smoking
addiction is 80%. While cancer cures smoking 100%, most people would
prefer acupuncture even though the cure rate is lower.
So, how do you know you are getting competent
acupuncture and not subjecting yourself to some quack's guesswork? Look
for certification. One certifying body is the National
Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM).
Look them up at http://www.nccaom.org.
7. Great Offers
|These are some items that you may
find interesting. I sorted through hundreds of such offers to come up with
some that looked worth checking into. This is my list. I've posted their
ad copy just as it is, but made a bulleted list:|
- The Classic IQ Test is the most thorough and scientifically accurate IQ Test on the Web. Previously offered only to corporations, schools, and certified professionals — it's now available to you. It's free, private and developed by PhDs.
- University of Phoenix Online
The nation’s leading online accredited university.
- Diminish Cellulite - Free Trial
- Receive a $50 gift card & free 30-day trial when you try Star Club Rewards. Members get exclusive discounts & save up to 50% on shopping, dining, travel, movies & entertainment.
- Get paid to take online surveys and make $5 to $75 per survey!
8. Thought for the Day
If you want to leave another person
absolutely stunned, simply listen to that person with your full
attention. Can you remember the last time you did this? The last time
someone fully listened to you?
Wishing you the best,
The views expressed in this e-newsletter are generally not shared by criminals, zombies, or brainwashed individuals.
Except where noted, this e-newsletter is entirely the work of Mark Lamendola. Anything presented as fact can be independently verified. Often, sources are given; but where not given, they are readily available to anyone who makes the effort.
Mark provides information from either research or his own areas of established expertise. Sometimes, what appears to be a personal opinion is the only possibility when applying sound logic--reason it out before judging! (That said, some personal opinions do appear on occasion).
The purpose of this publication is to inform and empower its readers (and save you money!).
Personal note from Mark: I value each and every one of you, and I hope that shows in the diligent effort I put into writing this e-newsletter. Thank you for being a faithful reader.
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