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Joshua Tree National Park, CA
September 29th, 2018
Dear Friends and Readers:

T-minus 32 days to Halloween. 🎃 This past month though, I pool-partied my birthday away in Palm Desert, helped set up a new school in Brooklyn, and found myself drawn to lots of new books with a bit of 'back to school' spirit. I hope you usher in Fall 2018 with one or more of them, but if you decide to go your own way, I'd love to hear where you land.  

'Til next time. Stay nerdy my friends. 


P.S. Quite the spooky book list in store for next month... 😈

Silicon Valley celebs like Tim Ferriss and always-in-their-pajamas-salesmen like Dead Beat Dan still love to shout out this classic. 22's timeless, straight-forward, example-rich, super-concise lessons are incredibly unexpected. ​"More money is wasted," authors Ries and Trout write, "in marketing than in any other human activity (outside of governments, of course.)" These lessons are expensive. Take note:

#1: The Law of Leadership — It's better to be first than it is to be better. 

Can you name the second person to ever successfully fly across the Atlantic? Probably not, even though he was a better pilot, reached the other side faster, and consumed less fuel. How about the first pilot to ever fly across the Atlantic? Charles Lindbergh, duh. Everyone knows that. 

#2: The Law of the Category — If you can't be first in a category, set up a new category you can be first in. 

Amelia Earhart was the third person to ever fly across the Atlantic. But she's gone down in history as the first woman to ever do it. People seem to have a more open mind when it comes to categories than brands. 'Me too!' and 'I'm better!' doesn't fly with them as much as 'I'm new. I'm different.'


This one had me spellbound on a recent coast-to-coast flight. A fun mash-up of psychology and economics with outlandish examples and iconoclastic humor, Freak is a fascinating portrait of odd-bird people, cultures, and situations across the globe: 

  • How to catch a cheating sumo wrestler
  • Winston Churchill's quitting attitude
  • The pros and cons of breastfeeding
  • Ping-pong diplomacy
  • Gut science & much more...

The authors' mindset as "rogue economists" to solve these head-scratchers is on full display throughout their afternoon-sized read—a mindset they contend that's learnable and lucrative.

Read More... 

Airframe is one of the few Michael Crichton novels that's *flown under the radar* a bit—which is a shame. ​After an international flight incident leaves three people dead and fifty-six injured, the press are eager to break the story—or make it up. They circle around the aircraft company, Norton, spreading rumors and trusting non-experts who have an axe to grind, hampering the real investigation, and putting thousands of daily fliers at risk. 

This tense mystery had me guessing until the end, but what stuck with me was Crichton's exploration of the media system at-large—its incentives, blind-spots, and limitations. The context-dropping, insinuating, unsubstantiated bold newspaper headlines and talking heads feel like their right out of today's big media reports and shows. Worse, the way Crichton shows how fake news has real consequences is a powerful indictment for our increasingly-post-truth world. 


This 50-page, one-act play hit me even harder than The Winslow Boy. Terence Rattigan's ability to both plot and stylize his worlds and characters with such concise care and understated romance is incredible.

Andrew Crocker-Harris, a retiring classics professor is unpopular with his students, disrespected by his employer and colleagues, and unloved by his wife. And yet, there is so much good in him, just under the surface, which in part he hides and others don't look. I loved once again experiencing in The Browning Version what I enjoyed so much in The Winslow Boy and Harlequinnade—the life-changing capacities of simple, personal gestures.


I Want To Talk To You

A complete gallery of surrealist painter and psychologist Cyril Rolando.

Million Pound Menu

This is like the Shark Tank of UK restaurants: delicious duels for investor $$$.  


Arabesque no. 1

Study music so good that just studying feels like a crime. 🎶   

If you get something out of these monthly emails and my blog, it would really mean the world to me if you would share this email with a friend and consider using the Amazon links to grab your next reads. This helps to offset the costs of building and growing the community. It's been a fun side project so far, but I'd love to one day do it full time.

Past Issues - 2018

Atom Bombs + Australia = 🤯
📍 Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
Copyright © 2018. Jon Glatfelter. All rights reserved.

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Jon Glat · 57 Bombay · Irvine, CA 92620 · USA

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