Monthly update: Dodgy gurus and moving to Singapore

Apr 24, 2021 9:06 am

Hi !

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Here's what had my attention in April...

What I've been up to

🙏 Tony Robbins: Is he your guru?

A few years ago Netflix put out a documentary called "I Am Not Your Guru", showing what it's like to attend a Tony Robbins event. It was made by fans of Robbins, and was meant to show him in a positive light. But I watched it and thought "urgh, not for me".

Which is weird, because I've got friends with whom I'm aligned on almost everything, except they absolutely love ol' Tone and absorb as much of his material as possible. It's funny how similar people can be exposed to exactly the same thing and come away with totally different impressions.

Anyway. YouTuber Münecat has done a two-part deep-dive into Robbins' tactics, background and controversies. Whether you're a fan or you're not or you don't care or you'd never heard of the bloke until two paragraphs ago, it's a super entertaining (if loooong) watch.

🇸🇬 I spoke to a friend who lives in Singapore, and now I'm obsessed with the idea of moving to Singapore.

Which is somewhat hypocritical of me because I'm always complaining about state over-reach, but hey – if issuing fines to people who feed pigeons or forget to flush the toilet keeps the place that spotless, scan my retina now!

Small tip: In the course of my daydreaming I discovered that if you search YouTube for "[city name] walking tour" there are countless videos where people have filmed just walking around the streets in real-time, unedited, with all the normal background noise. It's a great way to get a proper feel for a city, and quite relaxing to just have on in the background.

Will we actually move there? Highly unlikely. But because we have a lightweight life, we'll probably try it out for a few months at some point.

What I've published

Are Premium Bonds worth investing in? Premium Bonds are a thoroughly bizarre savings product: one I’d paradoxically call a “safe gamble”. But are they worth owning? I get asked a surprising amount, so I've answered.

The importance of the right goal. Or "my preemptive excuse for never writing a best-seller".

In praise of the lightweight life. You don't have to become a full-time globetrotter – you can still get most of the benefits by embracing a "lightweight life"...

What I've enjoyed

🇷🇺 I'm currently reading Once Upon A Time In Russia – a book about the rise of the oligarchs in Russia. It's written as a "dramatic narrative" describing real events with the forgotten or unknown specifics of conversations filled in from imagination. Although the author goes waaaay over-the-top with his elaborate scene-setting sometimes, it's a good read about a crazy period of history.

💵 If you're seriously into Bitcoin and macroeconomics, this podcast episode talking about the price of Bitcoin in relation to bonds and credit default swaps is fascinating. If you're not, skip it – it's not exactly accessible.

🔪 I've got a bit of an embarrassing thing for "true crime", so I enjoyed this story about a widow who trawled the early-1900s equivalent of dating sites for victims – and was (probably) never caught. Not a read for the faint hearted.

👋That’s it for April! It'd be great to hear from you if you've got news or recommendations to share.



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