12/03/2013 08:00:00 AM
A friend of mine shared out this article on dogs, children, and why one sometimes ends up biting the other. I was interested in it because I have a dog, a child, and do not want either one biting the other. What stuck out at me, however, was that the
12/02/2013 07:00:00 AM
I owe Wes Tasker a debt of thanks for giving me a term for this purpose.Heirloom or preservation training is martial arts done with the goal of preserving or recreating a particular fighting method. The focus is not necessarily on the "most effective
11/25/2013 12:39:00 PM
I thought of this post last Friday. I was shocked to see that I wrote back in 2009. Time flies, apparently.Re-reading it, I think the substance still applies, even if some of the superficiality has changed. My teaching style is not the same as it was
11/19/2013 13:55:00 PM
In his response to my Cult of Sweat post, Rory said
"Boundaries have to be pushed judiciously, but this endeavor is all about pushing boundaries."
It's the "judiciously" part that I think is important. Boundaries have to be pushed, but you have to
11/15/2013 13:34:00 PM
Yes, I have been behind on the blog lately. I have a lot on my plate at the moment, and things are generally a bit crazy. More posts will be coming soon, I hope.I do have two PDR events coming up.11/17 Fundamentals of Personal SafetyThree hour introd
11/07/2013 12:42:00 PM
Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us
by Daniel Pink
Did this book in audio one and a half times. I'll explain the half, I promise.
I think this book was recommended to me through someone on the Personal Defense Readiness team. Cer
11/04/2013 12:47:00 PM
The title of this post is a quote from Ross Enamait, from his excellent blog entry here.
It resonated closely with an article Coach Blauer shared a while back, from CrossFit trainer Pat Sherwood. Among the lines that stuck out in my head was this:
10/28/2013 11:00:00 AM
The idea of testing your fighting skills against another, equally matched opponent, is about as old as ideas get. We have records of various combat sports going back as far as we have historical records (and let's face it, pre-historic people probabl
10/25/2013 11:00:00 AM
Had an interesting little exchange with Rory. Wanted to bring it over here, because it brought up some stuff I've been thinking about a lot lately.
Rory wrote that good training includes Blood, Sweat, and Tears. He explains why, and his reasons are
10/24/2013 11:00:00 AM
Started this post a while ago, after the StrongFirst course. I was mulling over the ways in which different influences of mine refer to themselves and the people they train: why some prefer to be called a teacher, or a coach, or why they prefer to ha
10/23/2013 15:14:00 PM
Dan John and Chip Conrad Arcata DVD
10/05/2013 20:10:00 PM
World's Strongest Librarian: A Memoir of Tourette's, Faith, Strength, and the Power of Family
10/02/2013 12:54:00 PM
In the past few weeks, I've had a few conversations with people about how the training they'd done with me had translated into other parts of their lives.
When I was younger, I went through a phase where I thought that all of the "life lessons" stuf
09/27/2013 08:00:00 AM
Outliers: The Story of Success Audiobook CD Audiobook, Unabridged
by Malcolm Gladwell
This was a really interesting read (listen, technically), and some of the lessons I took were not just from reading the book, but from the experience of havi
09/26/2013 12:26:00 PM
I first heard of Wim Demeere through an interview he did with the (I think now defunct) Warrior Traditions podcast. I liked what he had to say, so I went and found his blog, and have been following it pretty closely ever since. Wim has a very authent
09/25/2013 12:59:00 PM
Recently finished listening Walter Isaacson's biography of Steve Jobs. I couldn't tell you why I read it, not being much of a Mac fan (despite owning a MacBook Air and an iPhone), nor knowing much about the computer industry (or computers in general)
09/17/2013 12:13:00 PM
Just got through watching Dan John's half of this DVD set. It's a great lecture (I'll do a full review once I get around to watching Chip Conrad's half), but one of the ideas I thought was incredibly valuable was Dan's discussion of Etching vs. React
09/11/2013 08:57:00 AM
Every now and then, I manage to read a book, and come away with the feeling that I haven't absorbed it. This was the case the first time I read Dune; I knew, technically, that I had finished the book, but for some reason, I felt like it hadn't stuck
09/03/2013 09:00:00 AM
I've had some interesting conversations with a couple of people over the last few months about leaving their respective martial arts to try something new. They felt that the training they were getting didn't offer them what they wanted. In some cases
09/02/2013 11:52:00 AM
The martial arts have a reputation (one enhanced by popular media) for being closely linked to spiritual pursuits. The image of the wise kung fu master, who dispenses spiritual advice alongside his ass-kicking, is one of the most enduring images in t
08/28/2013 12:07:00 PM
Nick asked on my review of Engineering the Alpha
"Am I being a bit thick here and thinking you cannot have an 8 hour eating window out of 24? It only means skipping breakfast"
The word "only" annoys me. Mostly because it's often used in
the way N
08/19/2013 08:00:00 AM
I'm calling this a "reader's review" because I haven't actually put the program outlined in Mass Made Simple into action. If I ever end up using it, I'll be sure to share those experiences.
Mass Made Simple: A Six-Week Journey into Bulking
08/12/2013 11:02:00 AM
A little over a year ago, I decided that I wanted to get more into the Strength and Conditioning field. I wanted to improve my knowledge for myself, to bring some better knowledge to my teammates at Sityodtong, and to expand my horizons a bit.
08/07/2013 14:26:00 PM
Martial arts have a reputation for being a vehicle for teaching far more than physical skills. While the rise of Mixed Martial Arts has lead some schools to de-emphasize (or ignore) the ideals that are supposedly part and parcel of the martial arts,
08/05/2013 08:00:00 AM
Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking [Audiobook, CD, Unabridged]
Blink, like several of Gladwell's books, is one of those things that has been on my "too read" list forever, but I never quite seem to get around to reading
07/27/2013 11:05:00 AM
About two years ago, I became interested in the idea of/philosophy known as Minimalism. I read a few books, followed a few blogs, and got rid of a fair amount of clutter around my house. I'm still working on the last one, which I think may be why I s
07/22/2013 11:26:00 AM
Personal development is a catch-all category for those using the martial arts to improve themselves. The improvements might be physical, mental, emotional, or even spiritual. But they are all internally directed, rather than externally focused.
07/18/2013 20:57:00 PM
Spent a week in Maine with the family. Small lakeside cabin. WIFI, but I left the computer at home. Checked email sporadically. Ignored FaceBook, Twitter, and other social media completely.
Also didn't train, at all. Read A Study in Scarlet for the
07/01/2013 12:20:00 PM
Becoming a Supple Leopard: The Ultimate Guide to Resolving Pain, Preventing Injury, and Optimizing Athletic Performance
by Kelly Starrett and Glen Cordoza
This book continued, among other trends, the trend of me reading books with titles that e
06/25/2013 11:20:00 AM
Ever since I got a hold of Easy Strength (and even a bit before), I'd been intrigued by the concept of the 40 day program. The idea, in a nutshell, is: pick five lifts, do them every day (or every workout) for 40 workouts in a row. My original plan t
06/21/2013 11:14:00 AM
The next set of posts are going to about evaluating schools specific to your goal sets. The advice from
06/19/2013 08:00:00 AM
One of the most interesting parts of the SFG Boston course was the programming question and answer section. The class got an hour to pick the brains of Pavel and Geoff Neupert on program design for, well, just about anything they could think of. It w
06/17/2013 10:42:00 AM
Last year, I wanted to write something about my father, so I did. I don't think it did him justice, but I'm not sure I could write a blog post that did my father justice. A book, maybe.
This year, I want to write about being a father.
I was a fathe
06/10/2013 10:10:00 AM
By now, you have a pretty good idea of why you want to get into the martial arts. Once you've defined your goals, and found some schools that look like they might suit you, the next step is to start visiting schools in person. There's really no bette
06/05/2013 12:00:00 PM
(This is mostly for my students, but really, it applies to anyone training in...anything).
You don't have to be sorry because you didn't understand the technique. You've never done the technique before.
You don't have to be sorry
06/04/2013 15:13:00 PM
In Part One of this discussion, we looked at how to find and evaluate the websites of martial arts schools in your area. Here in part two, we'll look at some other common resources: videos, blogs, discussion forums, and online reviews. We'll also tal
06/03/2013 07:30:00 AM
Had an interesting little discussion with Jeff Burger that brought up something interesting.
Jeff points out, rightly, that some styles have a proven track record in certain environments and context. Sport is one of the easiest places to see this, b
05/31/2013 10:21:00 AM
Note: This was originally meant to be one post, but it turned out to be much longer than I anticipated, so I'm breaking it into two pieces.
When I was twelve, I decided that I wanted to get into Judo, like my father before me.
05/24/2013 15:01:00 PM
Today marked day 21 of my experiment with Dan John's "40 Day Program".
The program is outlined in Easy Strength, though I'm using a template I got from Mike Perry. The basic ideas is take five lifts, do them every training session. The details are i
05/23/2013 08:00:00 AM
At this point in the process, you should have a pretty clear idea of what youre looking for (or at least, what you are NOT looking for). Now lets turn to the process of seeking a coach or school that can get you where you want to go.This is the
05/22/2013 08:00:00 AM
Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment
by George Leonard
Dan John mentions this book in several places, so I figured it was probably worth checking out.
Turns out that it is. Not a big shock, really.
Leonard approaches the question
05/21/2013 09:31:00 AM
In some ways, the idea of resonance is the most critical thing in choosing a martial arts school. In some ways, its the worst one.I stole the term from Dan John.
I'd strongly suggest that you take some time to look at a bunch of
05/16/2013 15:17:00 PM
Two of the most common questions I get about martial arts schools are:
"What style do you think I should do?"
"What do you think about X style?/Is X style good?" (Where X = Krav Maga, Aikido, BJJ, or whatever).
People seeking martial arts tra
05/08/2013 08:32:00 AM
I heard this phrase a couple of times over the StrongFirst level one course, but it was the last time I heard it that it actually made sense.
The grad workout of the SFG is complex of cleans, presses, and squats, performed with two kettlebells. It i
05/07/2013 08:39:00 AM
Kru Mark Dellagrotte said something very interesting during a talk with the fighters and trainers at Sityodtong last night.
The fight game, he pointed out, is one of the careers where luck rarely plays a factor. In business, for example, you can lan
05/04/2013 10:09:00 AM
This was something I picked up on Rory Miller's recommendation. It's been a bit since I finished reading, so a lot of the details are fuzzy in my mind, but I will do my best here.
Machete Season is, essentially, a series of interviews with a grou
05/01/2013 15:35:00 PM
A couple of notes:
1. I'm doing this out of order. The next concept on the list was "Coaches, Not Styles", but I actually think the question of Sacrifice needs to be addressed first, since it ties directly into figuring out how you're getting to you
04/25/2013 12:13:00 PM
Man 2.0 Engineering the Alpha
by John Romaniello and Adam Bornstein
"Why are you reading that?" was the first question that popped out of my wife's mouth when she saw this sitting on our dining room table.
It was a fair question, I guess.
04/22/2013 13:54:00 PM
At the end of last year, I wrote about my intention to make this a "Year of Strength." The idea has been to focus a lot of my energy on studying the art and science of getting stronger, and applying those ideas to myself.
It seems appropriate then,
04/16/2013 09:17:00 AM
1. For anyone who is wondering (and doesn't follow me on Twitter or Facebook), I am fine, as is my family. I wasn't anywhere near the explosions. I might not have even known about them, except that I went online to answer a Facebook message.
2. In m
04/11/2013 12:31:00 PM
"How do you train in relationship to why you train? Knowing this in advance is real important." -- Tony Blauer, Cerebral Self-Defense.
If there is a single consistent mistake I have seen people make in choosing a martial arts school, it would be thi
04/04/2013 18:08:00 PM
An instructor I know posted this little bit of tripe on her Facebook page. I'm including the snopes link, because I can't be bothered to cut and past the whole thing. It's one of these ridiculous "secret tricks rapists don't want you to know" kind of
03/31/2013 20:21:00 PM
I'm a big believer in understanding principles, both in the martial arts and in life. If you really get the principles, you can extrapolate specific solutions.
A lot of my method of helping people find a good martial arts school revolves around five
03/29/2013 21:00:00 PM
This is an idea I've been kicking around for a while.
I get a lot of questions about picking a martial arts school, because, well, I'm the "martial arts" guy for a lot of my friends (the ones that aren't martial artists already). And, on rare occasi
03/25/2013 09:32:00 AM
I'm a couple of days late on this, but I wanted to still get it out there.
I wrote this piece a few years ago for the Examiner webpage, back when I was trying to make that into something. I've since moved on to other things, but I wanted to share th
03/23/2013 21:24:00 PM
What Do You Think About X?
I get this question a lot, where "X" is some other martial arts style or training method.
The honest answer is, "I don't."
No, really. There's a lot of martial arts styles in this world. And a lot of ways of physical tra
03/20/2013 18:03:00 PM
Weird how things link up.
A martial arts instructor I know posted something on Facebook about some issues she was having with hip pain. I suggested that she seek out a physical therapist with a background in athletic training. I suppose an orthopedi
03/13/2013 13:41:00 PM
"A boxer is like a lion, the greatest predator on land. But you throw him in the shark tank and he's just another meal."
03/07/2013 21:49:00 PM
"I don't know...I don't want you to feel like you're wasting your time."
I get this every now and then from clients, students, or seminar attendees. Oddly, the people who are most concerned about it are the ones least likely to be wasting my time.
02/27/2013 13:29:00 PM
Muay Thai is taking a lot of rough blows this year, apparently.
Ramon Dekkers, a legend in the sport, just passed away. He was only 43 years old.
Details here: http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2013/2/27/4036510/muay-thai-champion-ramon-dekkers-passes-awa
02/26/2013 21:32:00 PM
First night of a weekly on-going self-defense class. Seems like a good group...we'll see how it evolves.
Got a variation on a question I get a lot after class. It's not a bad one, but it's just...complicated.
The format is basically "does X work fo
02/21/2013 08:51:00 AM
Hidden in Plain Sight: Tracing the Roots of Ueshiba Morihei's Power
by Ellis Amdur
Edgework Crisis Intervention Resources PLLC.
As I mentioned in a previous review, I have a long standing fascination with the Japanese martial arts in general, and Ai
02/13/2013 08:00:00 AM
Every now and then, I get a nice moment of synchronicity. In this case, it was between a Muay Thai fight video, and a re-listen to of Dan John's Intervention.
02/12/2013 20:41:00 PM
In case some of you reading this have missed it: apparently, the International Olympic Committee decided to drop the sport of wrestling from the 2020 Olympics.
I'm not quite sure I have the words to express how much this disappoints and angers me,
02/08/2013 21:03:00 PM
Kru Yodtong Senanan, the founder of the Sitydtong Muay Thai Camp has passed away.
I never met the man. Wanted to, but getting to Thailand requires time and money, and I never had both at the same time. Nevertheless, I feel like he influenced me. His
02/07/2013 21:18:00 PM
The Sparring Mind:How to Achieve Peak Performance Through a Sharper Mental Game
by Rodney King, M.A. and Christian de Quincey, PhD
I started paying a lot more attention to Rodney King a couple of years ago, after reading his book The Martial Arts Ga
02/05/2013 19:22:00 PM
This is a post that has literally taken me years to finish. It was meant to follow this post, but never happened. Mostly because I couldn't find a frame of reference to start from.
Oddly, the answer came from one of me and my wife's guilty pleasures
01/29/2013 09:52:00 AM
Dueling with O-Sensei
by Ellis Amdur
Edgework Crisis Intervention Resources PLLC
Many years ago (more than I'd like to think about, really), I read Timothy Zahn's "The Peaceful Man", a short story set in the far future, where mankind was at war with
01/23/2013 08:00:00 AM
This is a concept that kickboxing and PDR coach Tom Campbell
introduced to me years ago. This is me thinking about it and trying to organize it.
The Timeline-in-Training is a measure of how much time you
have to devote to training, and how long yo
01/21/2013 08:00:00 AM
"Mastery Demands Falling In Love With the Plateaus" -- Dan John
I think I heard Coach John say this on his last interview on the Fitcast. I could be wrong.
In any case, it's one of those little pieces of wisdom that is worth not only hearing, but
01/18/2013 08:00:00 AM
This post was inspired by a close listening to/viewing of a couple of different things. One was the latest episode of the Fitcast. The other was this video from John Romaniello, a NY-based fitness coach.
01/17/2013 07:54:00 AM
This is something that's popped up in conversation with a few people recently, in one form or another.
Change is okay.
Martial arts instructors like to sell the idea that once you start studying an art, you should never stop. That you should spend
12/31/2012 09:36:00 AM
Someone on the PDR Facebook page posed the question:
"Sparring (Boxing / MMA) ... Yes or No for someone who is only interested in self preservation skills. What do you think?"
Of course, the poll had only two answer choices: yes, or no. Which is p
12/30/2012 12:28:00 PM
Two months ago, I decided that I was going to commit to losing a bunch of a weight over the holiday season.
12/30/2012 12:06:00 PM
Some background: two months ago, I decided that I was sick of being overweight. No, I was not a giant pile of blubber, but I was definitely carrying more around my waistline than was necessary or healthy. And while I had ostensibly been trying to get
12/29/2012 08:00:00 AM
Dan John's Intervention is a lot of things. It began life as a seminar, it seems, which turned into a DVD set. Which then turned into a book. I'm sure I'm missing some steps here, but that's what seems to have happened from the outside looking in. Th
12/27/2012 08:00:00 AM
I've been thinking about a lot of this for a while. This is just me getting thoughts on paper.
2012 was a big year. My son was born. That event alone is enough to reshape someone's life. Being a parent is an experience that at some point defies des
12/17/2012 08:00:00 AM
For reasons that will hopefully become clear some day, I keep thinking about models for defining why people do martial arts/combatives/combat sport/whatever. Listening to Dan John's Intervention triggered something in my brain. Sort of.
Dan breaks u
12/13/2012 08:00:00 AM
This was inspired by a conversation with Rory a while back. A long while, as I reflect on it. It takes me time to get this stuff on paper sometimes.
Rory and I were discussing some counter-knife videos that we had viewed, and both noticed something
12/10/2012 11:50:00 AM
I'm not sure why this popped back into my head recently (possibly the recently released Star Trek trailer), but it comes up enough in self-defense discussions that I wanted to get it out on paper.
A few years ago I was doing a PDR semina
12/08/2012 12:24:00 PM
Checked my weight last night on a whim. First time since I started this.
Apparently, I dropped ten pounds. I didn't even realize it. Pretty cool. Body comp still needs some work, but I'm making progress.
No major hiccups so far. Thanksgiving was a
12/07/2012 08:49:00 AM
I have wanted to be able to make this announcement for years.
On Saturday, January 12, 2013, I will be running a basic self-defense seminar at Sityodtong Muay Thai Academy in Somerville, MA.
I'll be covering some of the fundamental drills and conce
11/30/2012 10:51:00 AM
From a discussion with Neil after my last post, and then some.
One of the biggest problems in one of these videos is that there is a kernel of truth to it. Human beings are generally less stable if they're standing on one leg. That's...not wrong. Bu
11/27/2012 21:48:00 PM
Watching a video that a friend shared (no, I won't share it here), and I was struck by something.
Every now and then, I stumble across videos where people are offering counters to attacks not taught in their particular system. Aikidoka teaching how
11/14/2012 21:31:00 PM
If the comments recently posted on my rant re: Michael Phelps hitting focus pads were posted by an actual human being with a real name, you are welcome to try again. Try posting with your name, offering a respectful dialogue, and offering something s
11/14/2012 08:10:00 AM
"Fortune favors the prepared mind" -- Louis Pasteur
This started life as a Facebook post/discussion, but I thought I'd bring it out here.
Years ago, I realized that I hated telling the fighters at Sityodtong "good luck" before they went to fight. T
11/09/2012 08:00:00 AM
I tweeted this a while back, but I have not been able to stop watching this video, so I'm sharing it here. The video is awesome, but the poem is the gold stuff. While Kipling's message is intended for his son, the wisdom in the poem applies to everyo
11/08/2012 08:00:00 AM
This is another idea spurred by Easy Strength. Yes, that book gives a lot of food for thought; it's good like that.
One of the cases that Dan and Pavel make in the book is that many people fail to take the long view in their training. The book is ta
11/06/2012 21:43:00 PM
I kicked around the idea of whether or not I should even post this. If you're reading this, the answer is "yes."
I looked up a couple of weeks ago and decided that I'm really sick of being slightly overweight. No, I am not fat. But nor am I in the s
11/02/2012 07:00:00 AM
This one was making the rounds on Facebook recently. I love it.
Seriously. I'm all for questioning authority, thinking for yourself, and exploring on your own. I am the first to encourage students to go off and learn for themselves.
10/30/2012 21:45:00 PM
This idea has been kicking in my head for a while. Maija's recent post caused it to resurface. I started kicking this idea around back here. Seems like it's time to revisit it.
In his book Frames of Mind, Howard Gardner advanced the idea of multiple intelligences. The simplistic version of the idea is that people learn and think in different ways, and being "smart" is not merely a function of doing well on the SATs (actually, being smart has very little to do with the SATs, but that's a differe [..]
10/23/2012 20:37:00 PM
I've been coming back to the idea of "playing technique" in Muay Thai a lot lately. People have the idea that Muay Thai training necessarily involves a lot of hard, heavy sparring. If you look at the way the Thai actually train, you see that isn't the case. Hard bag work? Sure. Hard pad work? Absolutely. Hard sparring? Not so much. A lot of play time. Focus on timing, distancing, technical skill. These are people who may fight on a weekly basis, and have to be ready to fight at a moment's notice [..]
10/17/2012 08:00:00 AM
"The will to win compares little to the will to prepare to win." ~ Bear Bryant
This went up on the PDR Facebook Group for discussion. I figured I'd throw my two cents in, but it ran long, so I figured I'd share it here too.
This is one of those quotes that I've seen/known for years, but somehow, it never entirely clicked until just now.
Along with my PDR coaching, I coach Muay Thai at Sityodtong Muay Thai in Boston, which has afforded me the opportunity to work with an amazing number of aspi [..]
10/15/2012 07:30:00 AM
Doing another three-part Personal Defense Readiness series at Redline Fight Sports this fall. First one is in two-weeks. We'll be starting with the fundamentals, and then building up as the course goes along.
Details here: http://redlinefightsports.comcastbiz.net/events-2/self-defense-seminar/#.UHtBPGgl9eg.twitter
10/10/2012 21:51:00 PM
Several years ago, I stood up from one of our computer desks at home, and noticed that my left leg was a little sore. The next day, after flying out to Vegas for a family wedding, my leg was in excruciating pain. After a week of or two of attempting to work through it, I finally went and sought out a physical therapist, who diagnosed me with piriformis syndrome.
10/06/2012 12:17:00 PM
I honestly cannot remember if Dan John made this observation in Easy Strength, or if it was somewhere else. I think it was Easy Strength, but I don't have the book in front of me right now.
Dan was discussing the legendary Bulgarian Olympic lifting programs, and how they made use of a great deal of volume. The Bulgarians were apparently quite famous for having multiple training sessions per day, which strongly contrasted with the style of training in the US and many other parts of the world. Th [..]
10/04/2012 21:32:00 PM
I've got a long list of things to write about, but getting this up first was pretty important to me. I've got a backlog of ideas to write about that were all spurred by my reading of Easy Strength (and listening to a couple of interviews with Dan John as well), so I wanted this up to set the context.
Easy Strength is a collaborative work between Dan John and Pavel Tsatsouline (referred to on the cover, and hereafter, as Pavel). It's odd, because despite both being very goal driven coaches, I' [..]
10/01/2012 08:00:00 AM
At the beginning of last month, I made the somewhat impromptu decision to take a month off from blogging. The idea was to clear my schedule to allow myself to focus on other projects, and to see what it was like to consciously decide to not blog for a whole month. I envisioned taking the free time to crunch down on other, larger writing projects, catching up on some non-writing work, and coming out of the month a bit ahead of where I started.
As you may imagine from that paragraph, things did n [..]
09/03/2012 08:00:00 AM
Hey, it's Labor Day! But I'm still working. After a fashion.
Kasey talks about Ambushes, and dealing with them. We have an expression in the PDR that says "all fights are dangerous, but the most dangerous fight is the ambush." If you're at all vested in self-defense, learning how to deal with the ambush is a huge consideration.
Kasey also has an interesting post on what he calls the "cross over effect".
09/01/2012 08:00:00 AM
Dork Tower is, as the name suggests, a comic about dorky stuff. I like it. Partially because I like dorky stuff, and partly because it occasionally hits some notes of powerful wisdom in the midst of its dorkiness.
In this case, it happened to help give me a push towards something I've been meaning to do for a while. Which is to try and focus a bit. I have so many projects, ideas, and things I want to work on that I find I keep taking care of the small stuff, and never getting to the big stuff.