The Morning Text 10/18/16

An Educational NewsletterGOOD MORNING!

Welcome to The Morning Text! 

I know many of you either have never met me or have no idea what I look like. Well let me tell you. The first thing people see when they look at me is my beard. I have a full beard with a French-curled mustache. I trim and shape my beard regularly and put oil and wax in it every morning to make sure it’s looking good. By the way, if any of you men are thinking of ditching shaving in order to save time in the morning, that’s not exactly how it works. Granted, I probably spend more time on my beard than most men because my beard is a big part of my physical identity so I’m very fond of it, but it does take some frequent maintenance. I even color my beard (Cat says it’s dye but the box says color-wash) a darker color to match my hair. Not that my beard is a completely different color, it’s just a naturally sandy beard whereas I prefer a darker thicker beard on myself. Anyway, today’s Morning Text is about beards.

If you read my first Morning Text about evolution, you will remember that it’s not the survival of the fittest, rather the survival of the most adaptable. You see, the genetic sequences that brought forth facial hair in men was our species’s way of adapting to the environment in which it found itself. Which raises the question, what are the evolutionary advantages? I’ll take any response. “Warmth?” Good. “Protection?” Okay. “Sexual attraction.” Uhuh. “Camouflage.” Yup. “Competition?” Yes, all of these are right. 

You can see why a beard would serve well for warmth, protection and camouflage. But why sexual attraction and competition? Well that’s where it gets trickier.

First, I’d like to shoot down the myth that all men and women are sexually attracted to beards. In fact, according to studies, beards and attractiveness may only have correlation in common rather than causation. For example, ice cream sales and murder rates go up at the same time. Does this mean that ice cream causes murder? Of course not. Instead, the most reasonable explanation is that both ice cream sales and murder rates rise because in the summer the heat can cause both overheating and anger driven psychotic breakdowns. So a woman or man may be more attracted to someone with a beard, but this doesn’t mean that the beard is what brings the attraction. Rather, studies suggest that women and men are more attracted to the high testosterone levels in men that also cause more beard growth.

Another reason why women are typically more attracted to men with beards is due to dominance. A behavioral psychology study conducted in June of 2015 by Tamsin Saxon in the Department of Psychology at Northumbria University suggests that beards play a large part in sexual competition. In this study twenty men and twenty women were asked to rate the attractiveness and dominance of six men who were filmed on four occasions while they grew out their beards. Surprisingly, the results suggested that beards didn’t necessarily make the men appear more attractive, but did make them appear more dominant. 

Now this all makes sense. Four men are at a bar all eyeing the same girl. The first three men are either clean shaven or have very little facial hair. The first three men try to pick up the girl until they see the fourth man with the large beard. They then become intimidated by this man and appear less confident, which in turn makes him appear less attractive to the girl. 

So that’s the most likely reason men developed beards through evolution. Not because women think they’re attractive, but instead to scare other men away.

I’d like to take this opportunity to shut down some BS. Men are often thought to be unmanly if they show too much interest or concern regarding their looks. Look at it this way. In almost every single species on the face of this earth, the gender that evolutionarily developed more extravagant and ornate has been male. And that’s because the male creature with more bells and whistles typically won the female. So don’t go laughing at a guy because he’s fixing his hair in the mirror, shopping for new clothes or grows his hair out to do a man bun. Instead realize that he’s probably attracting more men and women than you are because he’s trying. 

Challenge of the Day: go use the word, “Anthropomorphism” or “Anthropomorphic.” It is the attribution of human-like characteristics or behavior to a god, object or animal. Basically this means that you’re describing or portraying something to be human when it’s not. A great example are children’s shows in which animals are the main characters. Paw Patrol is a great example in which the talking animals with human level intelligence go about and complete great deeds. This is a tough one, but I expect great examples from a few of you!

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. If you would like to view previous Morning Texts please visit themorningtext.com 

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

The Morning Text 9/20

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/anthropomorphic

http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20160418-the-real-reason-men-grow-beards

http://m.beheco.oxfordjournals.org/content/27/2/512

https://www.quora.com/Was-there-any-evolutionary-advantage-for-beards

The Morning Text 10/17/16

An Educational Newsletter
GOOD MORNING!

Welcome to The Morning Text!

To begin, I’d like to tear apart a myth. In Inception (great movie) it is explained that 5 minutes in the real world is an hour in the dream world. This is false. We dream in real time which means that one minute in the real world is one minute in the dream world.

I received a lot of feedback on The Morning Text regarding sleep stages, so I’m going to expand on dreaming. You can read that Morning text here: http://themorningtext.com/index.php/2016/10/13/the-morning-text-101316/ 

I dream a lot, and they’re usually good dreams. Cat on the other hand has a lot of bad dreams. In fact, I have to wake her up every night from a bad dream. She recently voiced her jealousy to me that I almost never have bad dreams. It made me realize that I actually often have bad dreams,but I almost immediately realize they’re bad dreams so I turn it around and control my dream. This is called “lucid dreaming.”

By definition, lucid dreaming is any dream in which the dreamer realizes it is and dream and not reality. Usually the dreamer has control over the events, actions, environment or storyline in some degree. That begin said, not all dreams are entirely lucid. The dreamer may notice ya a dream but be unable to change the events in any way shape or form. Many professional athletes will go through “sleep training” in which they condition their brains to lucid dream so that they can train in their sleep. 

Here’s the question we all want answered. How does one lucid dream without a sleep therapist? First of all, it’s possible, Ive done it since I was 16. Second of all, it takes some time.

If you recall, R.E.M. Stage brainwaves look very much like our alert and conscious brainwaves. This is why most of our vivid dreams occur in R.E.M. (Stage R). We are also very in tune to the world around us when we are in this stage. This means that we can detect stimuli in our own bedrooms.

Discovering this, I had an idea. I wanted to see how music could affect my dreams. I planned a three month experiment in which I listened to a different genre of music every month while I slept. Month one was classical music, month two was jazz music, and month three was popular dance/hip hop/rap music. I wanted to see if my dreams got crazier or more creative as my subconscious fed off of the music I played. And while executing this experiment, I accidentally discovered something else. Not only could I hear the classical music the first month, but it made me realize that I was dreaming.

I remember the first night. I dreamt that I had gone camping alone in the mountains. I stood in a meadow of yellow flowers before a bear jumped from the plants to attack me. In the dream the bear mauled me, but as I heard Moonlight Sonata movement three play in the background, I realized it was just a dream. Immediately, I had full control over the dream. I tossed the bear off into a few flowers and I flew off into the sky to explore the world.

This occurrence continued happening more and more often until I was able to distinguish a dream from reality even if classical music hadn’t been playing in my room while I slept. Now, classical music always softly plays in all my dreams as a seemingly subconscious warning to myself. In another reference to the movie Inception, classical music became my “totem.” I never even finished the original experiment because I became so caught up in my new discovery. Actually, Catherine is beginning the experiment herself in attempts to gain control over her nightmares. The trick is to consciously remind yourself right before you go to sleep, “If I hear music, it’s a dream.”

Of course this isn’t the only option, there are many others that are less likely to keep you up. There is now a headband on KickStarter that reads your brainwaves which you wear while you sleep. During the first 4 stages of sleep, the headband remains inactive. However, the sporadic and unpredictable R.E.M. Stage brainwaves triggers the headband. The headband then flashes a dim red light over your eyes signaling to inform you that you are dreaming. The headband isn’t available yet, but we hope it to be in the market soon.

You challenge: play some music softly while you nap today or sleep tonight, come back to me with the result. Thanks!

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. If you would like to view previous Morning Texts please visit themorningtext.com 

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

The Morning Text 10/14/16

An Educational NewsletterGOOD MORNING! 

Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

Today we have another feature! Today, The Morning Text was written by Austin Peinhardt. Austin is also one of my best friends and I’m so excited that he is featuring today and will feature in days to come. His newsletter comes in two parts, this being the first. So without further ado, I give you The Morning Text.

Tattoos have become a staple of modern military culture in the western world, especially in the US military. However, the development of this cultural aspect is rather broadly unexplored. The goal of today’s morning text will be to create a rough outline of the development of tattoo culture in modern warfare, starting at the very beginning, and to discuss ethical issues we can glean information from through this history. Due to the fact that this history is extensive, this will be a two part text, today’s spanning from Polynesian origins to the Civil War.

One would assume that tattoo culture in the western world would have originated, or at least been influenced by, ancient western culture. This is not the case; while ancient civilizations in Europe such as the Celts from Britain and the Dacian and Illyrian cultures from Greece practiced tattooing, these practices largely died out during Roman conquests. The origins of our modern military tattoo culture actually lies in Polynesian civilization.

Most Polynesian cultures, including the Samoan, Hawaiian, and New Zealand tribes practiced some form of ritual tattooing. In fact, the word tattoo can be seen to be derived from the Samoan art of “tatau”. Tattoos represented an individual’s life force or “mana” (yes like from the nerdy videogames we all love). They marked an individual’s social status and were mandatory for many, as refusing them would lead to a person being labeled a pala’ai (read: coward) and being ostracized from the clan.

This form of tattooing was discovered by European civilization during the late colonial period, as explorers such as James Cook encountered these civilizations as they sailed the Pacific in search of rich territory. The story here is similar to much of colonial history, with some practices synthesizing with western culture and others being completely destroyed. In Hawaii, where the practice of tattooing was kept secret to the extreme of destroying all tools after every tattooing session, European violence caused the practice to disappear entirely, leaving no evidence as to how the art was performed.

These tattoos first became popular among sailors, usually as tokens of their adventures on the sea. For about a decade tattoos remained only on sailors, as the christian church did not take kindly to those who sported them. It wasn’t until the country grew closer to the eruption of the Civil War that tattoos began again to spread towards the mainstream of culture, as it seemed the church had more important issues to worry about. In 1846, Martin Hildebrandt set up a tattoo shop in New York City, beginning a tradition of tattooing sailors and military service men on both sides of the Civil War.

This early history of tattooing brings up a much broader discussion about the interaction of civilizations; what are the benefits and the detriments of the civilized and uncivilized world colliding, and what steps should be taken in the process of this collision? This may seem like a discussion for the past, yet there remains several uncontacted tribes in diverse locations throughout the globe. It is my opinion that the answer lies in a combination of cultural synthesis and political sovereignty (most likely bought through a sponsored grant from a reputable anthropological foundation). 

Here is where the challenge for the day comes in. These uncontacted tribes will disappear sooner than many realize. Your challenge is to research one you are interested in, and learn about one of its traditional cultural practices. From there you have to describe that practice on a google doc (doesn’t need to be long, a few bullet points might even be enough if the practice is simple) and share it with me at peinhardtaustin@gmail.com . I will post them on one google doc which will be attached to the second part of this morning text. Preserving the practices of disappearing cultures in modern times is as easy as typing a few words on a google doc online. Plus, it will be fun to read all the interesting accounts of unspoiled ancient culture people find.

(to be continued)

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. To view previous Morning Texts, please visit themorningtext.com.

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Austin Peinhardt 

The Morning Text 10/13/16

An Educational Newsletter
GOOD MORNING!

Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

You know what? I’m exhausted. I can barely keep my eyes open. So what better to write about than sleep itself, because everyone knows that talking about food when you’re starving truly helps the situation. 

Most people know that there are 5 stages of sleep, but fewer people know what occurs in each stage. So today I will be explaining the stages of our wonderful sleep.

Stage 1) This is the lightest stage. Someone could drop a pen and you would wake up. This stage typically brings sudden muscle contractions and a sense of falling causing us to jerk awake. Remember that, I’m coming back to it. The brain waves are rather fast in the first stage of sleep, but not quite as fast as being fully awake.

Stage 2) in stage two people typically begin to see images of their imagination. In this stage, all eye movement stops as the sleeper continues to fall deeper. The brainwaves in this stage are slow with sporadic bursts of rapid brainwaves.

Stage 3) in stage three the slowest of all sleep brainwaves, Delta waves, begin to appear. The Delta waves seem to intermingle with faster, shorter waves. This is the first stage of “deep sleep” from which it is very difficult to wake someone. 

Stage 4) In 2008, the US sleep profession community officially removed stage 4 from the list and grouped 3 and 4 into one “deep sleep stage.” But because this is a recent change, I elected to include it. In this stage Delta waves appear to be produced almost exclusively. In this stage (and the third) muscle activity and eye movement cease to occur. This stage is when most sleep walking and bed wetting occurs in children. 

R.E.M.) discovered in 1953, the R.E.M. cycle is the most recent addition to our sleep stages. R.E.M. Stands for “Rapid Eye Movement; very recently, however, many sleep profession specialists, namely The American Academy of Sleep Medicine, have begun to refer to R.E.M. as “stage R,” but it hasn’t quite caught on yet. In this stage, eyes move rapidly and limbs temporarily lock up, and brainwaves seem so stimulated that it’s as if the person were awake. So why are our brains so active? Because we’re dreaming. Granted, we can and do dream in all the other stages but we almost never remember them. If you ever wake up from a dream or you recall a dream later, chances are it occurred in R.E.M. In Stage R, the body seems to lose some of its ability to regulate body temperature, heart rate, blood pressure and often causes erections in men. If the sleeper wakes up from stage R and remembers the dream they were just having, they can increase the likelihood of remembering that dream even later in the day by simply staying awake a little longer before going back to sleep. 

Infants spend almost all of their time in Stage R whereas adults spend about 50% of their time in Stage 2, 20% in R.E.M., and the remaining 30% is divided amongst the other stages. Lucky babies, am I right? On average, it takes an adult 90 to 110 minutes to make it through a complete cycle. 

If you’d like to know more about planning a good night’s sleep and getting the most productivity out of your day by taking advantage of alertness peaks, I recommend looking into circadian rhythms and studying your own.

Now, remember when I said that we often jerk ourselves awake from stage 1 because we feel as if we’re falling. There are a few leading theories as to why we do this. The first is simply that we have too much energy from the day and our body is trying to use it up so that we can sleep. Another theory is that we receive these hypnic jerks because we are usually sleep deprived, stressed or intoxicated. The more interesting theory is that it was an evolutionary advantage that we happened to carry on from before our species developed from apes. The theory argues that it saved apes from falling out of trees as they fell asleep by causing them to be more alert when napping in trees.

Challenge of the Day: text me back and tell me about your favorite dream you’ve had within the last year.

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. 

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

Notes from my old Psychology classes

http://www.sleepdex.org/stages.htm

The Morning Text 10/12/16

An Educational NewsletterGOOD MORNING!

Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

Did you know that this year you you’ll have peed enough to fill two large bathtubs? That’s a lot of pee!

So a recipient sent me a rather interesting article regarding kidney stones yesterday. As many of you know, kidney disease kills many people around the world yearly. In fact, in the US alone, kidney disease is the 9th leading cause of death. Most people don’t even know they have it. 

So this study I received regarded the passing of kidney stones. To preface the study, kidney stones develop when certain chemicals from your urine bond and build up until they become a stone. Some stones don’t detach from the kidney wall until they become too large to pass, requiring surgery. 

The study was conducted by Urological Surgeon Wartinger. To his surprise, many of his patients reported that they passed kidney stones on roller coasters. This gave him an idea.

So he gathered every kidney stone ridden aardvark and put them on a roller coaster. Totally kidding, that’s not how he did it. Wartinger 3D printed a silicone kidney and filled it with real kidney stones and urine (whose urine? No idea). With permission from Disney World in Orlando, Wartinger and his colleague safely stowed the kidney model in a backpack and rode thunder mountain 60 times. After each ride, they would count the number of kidney stones “passed” and re-attach them to the kidney wall before going on the next ride. The results were surprising.

They found that when the rider sat in the front of the rollercoaster, stones were passed 16.67% of the time. However, when riding in the back, the riders would pass s stone 63.89% of the time! If that’s not incredible I don’t know what is. 

Kidney stones often cause so much pain that the passing can involve a visit to the hospital. But now, for a lower price, those with kidney stones have a relatively efficient, and somewhat fun, method to remove them.

Challenge of the Day: use the word urinate. The funnier the situation, the more participation points you get. Come tell me!

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. If you would like to view previous Morning Texts please visit the main website at theMorningText.com

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2929972/What-body-year-Graphic-reveals-ll-produce-urine-two-bathtubs-shed-half-stone-skin.html

https://m.curiosity.com/topics/riding-roller-coasters-can-help-pass-kidney-stones-curiosity/?ref=ios-dc

The Morning Text 10/11/16

An Educational Newsletter
GOOD MORNING!
Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

I’m so sorry I didn’t have a Morning Text yesterday! I simply forgot to write one. Usually, The Morning Text is more educational; however today, I’m giving into Catherine’s wishes and writing about puppies.

My top three favorite dogs: American Bully Pit bulls, Rottweilers, and Boxers. Although she typically likes dogs that resemble old men, Her favorite dogs: Newfoundlands, American Bully Pit bulls, and Chow chows. She obviously likes more cuddly dogs while I like athletic, energetic dogs. Nonetheless, we decided that we both love American Bullies. She likes them because they always have a smile. I like them because they’re loyal and straight up beastly.

In my opinion, Pit bulls unrightfully receive a bad reputation as being dangerous because they were bred for dogfighting. This is false, nearly every breed of Pit Bull were actually bred for farm work and sport. These dogs were bred for boat hunting, cattle herding, bear hunting and companionship. Originally having a muscular and stocky build, these dogs were perfect for sport. And once Pit Bulls showed aggressive behavior, breeders immediately began breeding out their aggressiveness, turning them into family dogs. In fact, they were Americas “favorite dog” for some time before WWII. 
Also, I’d like to backtrack a little. Notice that I previously said “every breed of Pit Bull.” That’s right, Pit Bull is not a breed, rather a group of breeds that have the same ancestry. The most common breeds:

 1. American Pit Bull Terrier – bred to hunt wild cattle and hogs in addition to being a livestock driver.

2. American Staffordshire Terrier – being larger with an assertive and territorial personality, this dog served best as a guard dog for livestock. Although stubborn by nature, these Pits are known for their undying loyalty to their owners.

 3. Staffordshire Bull Terrier – originally intended for the hunting of bears, boars and bulls, these guys were real sport dogs. As bloodsports are now illegal, these dogs are now used as family guardians.

 4. American bulldog (not American Bully) – while this dogs ancestors were used more for blood sports, instead American Bulldogs would stay on the farm. They would herd and guard cattle. In addition, as this breed was faster by nature than other pit bull breeds, they were used to catch quick vermin like feral pigs.

 5. Bull Terrier – these guys were bred for dog fighting, bull baiting and bear hunting. Ironically, this breed failed miserably in fulfilling the wishes its breeders indented but instead made a great watchdog. 

 6. American Bully (my favorite) – far stockier and more muscular than its closest cousin, the American Pit Bull Terrier, the American Bully is a new addition to the Pit Bull list. It wasn’t recognized by the United Kennel Club until July 2013. These guys rarely show aggressive behavior and are very sweet. They’re known for being incredibly loyal and obedient companions. (Can you tell I’m a little biased?)

Cat and I were recently talking about getting an American Bully puppy, and whilst doing research, I came across a rather interesting study.

Recently, many studies have been conducted regarding dogs and their behavior in relation to humans. However, I am referring to a study that was just conducted this year which aimed to prove that dogs truly do understand what we are saying, regardless of how we say it. 

Supported by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the researchers, based at Hungary’s Eötvös Loránd University, used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine and measure the canines’ brain activity. With the dogs’ owners, the AAAS trained the dogs to lie motionless under an fMRI scanner for several minutes at a time. After being set up on the machine that examined their brains, the dogs would be spoken to by their owners. 

The owners had specific instructions to follow regarding what and how they communicated with their dogs. They were required to use both a neutral tone and a praising tone while saying both neutral words and words that the dog already should have known (walk, bed, no etc). 

The researchers found that language is processed by the dog in the left hemisphere of its brain, where as the intonation (tone) tended to excite auditory areas of the right hemisphere. I disagree with how the “right brain-left brain” concept is taught to people because it’s far more complex; however, for the sake of time, I will simply say that the left hemisphere is more technical and the right hemisphere is more artistic. Anyway, back to the dogs. For those of you whom did not take psychology, this is very similar to how humans process language. 

The study also proved that dogs understand vocabulary regardless of intonation. “This shows … that dogs not only separate what we say from how we say it, but also that they can combine the two for a correct interpretation of what those words really meant,” said lead study author Attila Andics. Meaning, a trained dog will be able to understand the difference between “walkie” and “treat” regardless of how you say the two words. That being said, the praising words paired WITH the praising intonation showed the greatest excitement in the canine brain. 

Granted, none of this is news to us. We all pretty much knew that our dogs understood what we are saying, but now we have scientific proof.

Challenge of the Day: go talk to a dog, any dog, preferably an animal one. Go say normal things and then change the tone and the words and see the dogs reaction. This time it’s nothing scientific, dogs are just awesome. 

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. To visit previous Morning Texts please visit theMorningText.com

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

American Bully Guide 101 – Picking The Best American Bully Breed For You

5 Types of Pit Bull Breeds That is Popular Today

https://www.google.com/amp/newatlas.com/fmri-dogs-vocabulary-intonation/45159/%3famp=true?client=safari

The Morning Text 10/07

An Educational NewsletterGOOD MORNING!

Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

I love studying successful people. The things they’ve accomplished despite their circumstances and upbringing they overcome all thats ever stood in their way. I have a few favorite individuals i like to talk about, one of them I already have and that’s Steven Covey. But now, I’d like to tell you a story that effectively depicts the character of the man who created one of the largest companies ever seen. 

That man is Sam Walton. Whether you agree with his company Walmart or not, no one can deny that he was an incredible person. One of my favorite quotes is by Bill Nye, he said, “Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.” In my opinion, there is no better quote to describe Sam Walton.

After Sam built his store, he left his mother to operated while he took his small plane out to his competitors stores. He spent hours and hours in his competitors stores. In fact, his mother claimed that he spent more time in their stores than he did his own. That’s how hungry he was for knowledge. Sam knew he could learn from anyone be they religious, atheist, a child, a senior, a parent or a prisoner. He saw them all as individuals with a small piece of gold hidden somewhere in their minds, and he wanted to find it.

So here’s the story. A few Brazilian entrepreneurs were starting a business down in Brazil. In order to cut the learning curve they decided to reach out to all successful business individuals in the US. The letter was a request to meet and interview the recipient in order to learn from them so that the Brazilian entrepreneurs could get ahead of the game. As one might imagine, they had almost no luck. The only answer they received was from Sam Walton (who was one of the richest men in the world at the time). He said he would love to meet with them and he told them to fly into a certain airport on a certain day and he would have them for dinner. They excitedly bought plane tickets and jumped on the decided flight. 

Upon arrival at the airport, an old man drove up in his pick up truck and yelled to them, “Hop in!” 

They immediately questioned, “are you going to take us to Sam Walton?” 

The old man called back out to them, “I am Sam Walton!”

They all got in his truck and rode to Sam’s house where his wife had prepared a wonderful home cooked meal. The Brazilians began asking questions as they ate, which Sam Walton graciously answered followed by his own array of inquiries. Not far into dinner, the Brazilian businessmen realize that he is asking more questions than they are. It occurs to them that he invited them so that he could learn from them, not the other way around! Finally, they finished their dinner and met a little longer before going along their way. The Brazilian businessmen went back to their country and started a very successful business.

Some time passes and the businessmen receive a letter from Sam requesting to meet them in Brazil. They excitedly accept his request and tell him to join them so that he can see their business. The day Sam’s plane is to arrive in Brazil the hosts receive a call from the police station saying that an old man by the name of Sam Walton had been arrested. They immediately rush to the police department to get him out. 

They begin angrily questioning the police, “Why have you arrested this American billionaire? What was he doing to warrant that?”

The police responded, “He was crawling about the floors of various stores and it was frightening people. We thought he was crazy.”

After bailing Sam out, the businessmen question him, “Why were you crawling around on the floors of stores?”

Sam pulls out a tape measure and says, “I was measuring the aisle ways in various department stores around here. I wanted to see if they knew something that I didn’t.”

Let me put that into perspective. This man made more money than Bill Gates (creator of Microsoft), Warren Buffett (Investor, third richest man in the world) and Jeff Bezos (creator of Amazon) COMBINED. He split it amongst his children for tax reasons, but he still made way more money than anyone else ever. Now think of that, how prestigious this man is in the world, and he’s crawling on the dirty floors of some foreign department store because he wanted to learn from them. In addition to that, he didn’t send some chauffeur to pick up the businessmen; instead he did it himself. If that’s not inspiring, I don’t know what is. He’s like the gold miner of knowledge. Which brings me to the challenge of the Day.

Choose five people today that you’ve never learned anything from. It can be someone you already know or someone you don’t. Talk/observe this person and focus on what you can learn from them. Remember, you don’t always learn good things from people. Some person whose name escapes me (maybe Abraham Lincoln) once said something along the lines of, “I learn from everyone. Oftentimes it’s what I don’t want to do, but I do learn from everyone.” So look for those people and those lessons. Then choose your favorite lesson and teach me what you learned.

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me.

 

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

Sam Walton- Made in America by Sam Walton and John Huey

It’s a great book, I recommend it to any person that has ever breathed EVER.

The Morning Text 10/06

An Educational Newsletter

GOOD MORNING!

Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

As I said before, I love Halloween. Whilst writing yesterday’s Morning Text, I began to wonder where all of these traditions came from. So I did some research, low and behold, I formulated today’s Morning Text. 

So why is Halloween a thing? Before it was full of family friendly fun, it actually existed for a religious purpose (like most holidays). Approximately 2000 years ago, a Celtic festival called Samhain was celebrated on November first. On the night before Samhain, the Celtic people believed that the dead would return as ghosts. They would leave food and drink on the doorstep to keep the ghosts at bay. In addition to that familiar practice, people would also wear masks outside of their houses so that they would appear to the visiting dead as a friendly ghost. The mask was used as a form of camouflage, if you will. 

In the 8th century, the Christian Church renamed Samhain as All Saints Day or All Hallows Day. The night before was named All Hallows Eve, which was later shortened to Halloween. 

On November 5th 1605, Guy Fawkes was arrested and executed for his role in the catholic-led conspiracy to blow up the English Parliament building and remove the Protestant King James I from power. Immediately following the execution of Fawkes, communal bonefires (later called bonfires) were used to burn effigies and the symbolic bones of the pope. Eventually, children began wearing masks whilst asking for money from people by saying “A penny for the Guy” as in Guy Fawkes. Sound somewhat familiar? 

In medieval times, new traditions arose called Guising and Souling. People would beg for pastries called Soul Cakes at people’s doorsteps. In exchange, the beggars would pay for the giver’s deceased relatives. Guising was done by young people that would dress up in costumes and sing songs or tell jokes at people’s doorsteps in exchange for food, money and wine. 

Guising was adopted and altered in the 19th century by Irish-American immigrants as Trick-Or-Treating. Originally, trick-or-treat focused more on the tricks. It wasn’t until the 1950s and 1960s that people practiced trick-or-treating as a family friendly activity. All that being said, supposedly no one knows where the term “trick-or-treat” was coined. 

Sorry it’s so short today! It was a simple topic. Your challenge today is to tell me your Halloween costumes. I’m excited to hear your ideas and plans!

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me.

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

http://www.history.com/topics/halloween/history-of-trick-or-treating

The Morning Text 10/05/16

An Educational Newsletter

GOOD MORNING!

Welcome to the Morning Text Beta Group! Thank you for helping me build this newsletter, blog and subscription service.

My favorite holiday is Halloween. I love Halloween so much that enduring the world’s insatiable desire for pumpkin spice actually seems somewhat worth it. So in order to get into the spirit, but still keep this educational, I’ve elected to write about serial killers. If you don’t have a strong stomach for creepy things, you WILL want to skip today’s Morning Text. 

Can anyone tell me which serial killer had the longest fear reign in the US (hint: Cap’n Crunch is not the answer). This terrifying individual is Dennis Rader, otherwise known as BTK (bind, torture, kill). Both he and John Wayne Gacey are my favorite serial killers to read about because they were both way more messed up than your average serial killer. That being said, I’m only going to write about BTK today because he’s less scary and neither you nor I have the time to deal with a Morning Text that long.

BTK, Dennis Rader, lived and operated in Sedgwick County, Kansas. With only a body count of ten people, why would he be my favorite? Because he had no problem hanging children from plumbing lines to ejaculate on their bodies just to go home at the end of the day and have dinner with his unsuspecting family of which he loved very much. The reason he managed to get away with it for so long was because he made the switch between murder and normal life so easily. He was a very organized person, whether it came to his hobbies or true work. He specifically chose jobs in which he could “troll” (as he called it). After Rader chose a young single girl as a target (usually following a few at once), he would observe them and memorize their movements and activities. He would do this for months to make sure he didn’t make a single mistake in documenting their schedules. He would then choose a day to attack. 

On the day of the attack, he would first cut the telephone line in the back of the house (thank goodness we have cellphones now), then he would wait for them inside. When they entered he would usually threaten them with one of two stories. The first, he told his victims he was on the run from the police and needed an escape; he demanded her money and keys with a guarantee of her safety. The second, he would inform her that he had a sex problem he couldn’t break and that he was there to rape her. He would also assure her that if she cooperated she would not be harmed. With those stories (and one or two others) he would lure people into his trap, tie them up, torture them, and strangle them to death. Every move he made was planned, and he always had a backup plan if things went south (which they did quite often for him).

He was also famous for playing cat and mouse with the police. Cut out magazine letters and pictures to write letters to the media, he wrote poetry to the police and media, and he sent drawn pictures of the victims death poses to taunt the cops. He genuinely felt that the police had fun playing this game with him. As much as Rader loved playing this game, he didn’t have time for it. So began searching for more efficient methods to communicate with them. He wrote a letter to the police department, asking if a floppy disk was traceable. The police of course lied and said that it wasn’t. And that’s how they got him, they received the floppy disk which they traced back to the file of Dennis Rader in a computer of the church at which Rader served as a youth pastor. And that’s how they got him, because he wasn’t tech savvy. 

To make it worse, the man is still alive. Dennis Rader has been in prison for over a decade. You see, the death penalty was not legal at the time he committed the crimes. He will, however, be incarcerated for life (rightfully so).

I hope that left a cheery feeling in your heart as you start your day! Your challenge today is to ask someone who their favorite serial killer is. Let me know what the answers are!

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me. 

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons

Source:

Bind, Torture, Kill – The Inside Story of the Serial Killer Next Door By Roy Wenzl, Tim Potter, L.Kelly, and Hurst Lavian

The Morning Text 10/04/16

An Educational Newsletter

GOOD MORNING!

 Welcome to The Morning Text!

Fun Fact: Why do we vote on Tuesdays? Well in 1845 when Election Day was established, many of the American people were farmers. These farmers of course lived far away from the city with only horse drawn vehicles to travel. It took many farmers a full day of travel to get to the county seat in order to vote. So the US saw it appropriate that the biblical sabbath be respected, a day of travel be given to all citizens and still allow the farmers to get back for Farmers Market day (held on Wednesdays). This is why we vote on a Tuesday every year.

Okay can I complain for a minute? The election. I’m not going to tell you which of the two I prefer because in all honesty, I prefer neither. And I won’t be attempting to sway your vote in any direction. I’m simply going to shoot down a few naysayers. I will be voting third party. I overheard someone yesterday say, “A third party vote is a wasted vote.” I’m sick and tired of people saying that. The three most American things one could possibly do are vote, protest and drunkenly eat a hotdog at a NASCAR event whilst sporting American flag Chubbies. One of the greatest ideals that the US has upheld for centuries is the fact that it’s citizens have a say in who leads the country. How insensitive would one have to be to tell a fellow citizen that their vote will mean nothing. Which brings me to my next point.

Yes, the libertarian and green parties have absolutely no chance of winning. So why, in an election in which we must choose the lesser of two evils, would someone not take up arms against the greater evil with everyone else? I’m glad you asked. It’s because we shouldn’t have to choose between two evils. Voting is about choosing your favorite candidate, not choosing which candidate will kill us slower. For those that are voting third party, it’s no longer about winning or losing, that ship has sailed. It’s about making a statement. It’s about sending a message to the country saying, “Our polarized political system is not enough to meet our needs and I refuse to vote for the two people that the government says are my only options.” It’s about demanding change. We are using our vote as a voice by which we can convey an ideal that we think is more important than choosing between the lesser of two evils.

It also makes me mad that the third party candidates don’t even have the same opportunities to be heard that the chosen republican and democrats have. And I’m not talking advertising or rally funds. I’m referring to the debates, even the primary debates. 

A USA Today poll conducted August 26th of this year shows that 76% of citizens believe that third party candidates should be allowed to participate in the debates, and yet are not put on the stand. This is because The Commission on Presidential Debates makes the rules of the game. The Commission is co-headed by the former president of the National Republican Committee, Frank Fahrenkopf, and former Clinton Press Secretary Michael D McCurry, an active leader of the National Democratic Committee. So of course they want to keep a third party candidate off the ticket, it would take away their voters. That being said, if a third party candidate averages 15% in the primary polls then the Committee is legally required to let the additional candidate participate. Unfortunately, the third party candidates did not make the cut this election. Most likely due to the fact that they didn’t get the publicity from the primaries because they weren’t allowed to participate in those either. The whole electoral system is unfairly programmed to shutout other opinions, and it’s not fair to the American people. Long ago, we saw more diversity with our candidates and parties. There was the Federalist Party, the Democratic-republican party, The Whig Party, The Liberty Party, The Free Soil Party, The American Party, The Republican Party, The Liberal Republican Party, The Populist party, I could go all day. These outsider parties actually had a chance and WON! Granted, most of these political platforms are horribly outdated. What I’m saying is that the turn of each power from party to party came with a certain amount of growth that made the nation what it is today. Unfortunately, The Committee has figured out a way to fix that.

Anyway, I’m sorry I got off track. A vote for a third party is not a wasted vote. A vote is also a voice and anyone that tries to tell you that you’re doing the country a disservice by voting third party clearly doesn’t understand the importance of the right.

Challenge of the Day: if you’re not registered, GO REGISTER TO VOTE. Come back to me and tell me if you’re registered or not, or if you did it today. Seriously, just google “register to vote,” and you can do it in under 2 minutes online. There’s even a way to register via text message.

That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me.

Have a wonderful day.

Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sources:

http://www.history.com/news/ask-history/why-do-we-vote-on-a-tuesday-in-november

https://www.google.com/amp/amp.usatoday.com/story/89710228/?client=safari

http://www.debates.org/index.php?page=commission-leadership

https://www.timetoast.com/timelines/political-parties-throughout-american-history-1792-2012