Random Sunday: on popularity, acceptance, clandestine behavior and tragic coincidences

Some thoughts on success, popularity and love

The need to be loved by crowds is a tragic one. Nobody is loved by crowds. They may admire someone, they may ambivalently feel attracted and hate this someone, but never love. Love is a response to an intimate interaction – an act of kindness, empathy or generosity.

Expecting to be loved for one’s success is even more tragic. Nobody loves anyone for their success. Not even one’s own mother. Parents are relieved and proud of their children’s success, but will not love them more (or less) for that. The outcome of success, in respect to love, is usually the opposite: one is less loved for excelling.

If one is prepared for this, then success is awesome. It is either autotelic (it is an end to itself), thus, satisfying the individual and making him happy, or, in many cases, it improves one’s chances of making money, getting laid and being treated better by society.

But love… oh, who knows these things?…


Some things people do but won’t admit it:

*picking one’s nose and discreetly making booger balls, sometimes attaching them under the classroom desk (only to discover there are several little balls already glued there). Yes, even in grad school

* watching internet porn. Sometimes one stops after a nasty virus fucks up the computer and one has to call the nerd friend to fix the mess

* done backyard powerlifting meets with everything one condemns today, when one is older, more mature and understands the sport

* embarrassing dates – no need to go into details

* eating more candy at a kid’s party than the kids you’re supposed to supervise


# 3 can be avoided if one’s father is a powerlifter and chooses one’s meets. It is obviously rare


Companies I support in the Strength Sports

A company is, by definition, an organization based on the pursuit of profit. It doesn’t matter how immensely helpful to humanity (or a part of it) their product/service is: if it doesn’t profit, it dies. The economic name for that is “go bankrupt”.

Usually people find it morally easier to support non-profits. As the name says, their raison d’etre is not profit. It is usually a cause. I support a small number of non-profits. I am not a rich person, so I have to choose carefully a small number of such organizations and I can only help with small amounts of money.

But I do support some companies. I will market them, recommend them and help them if I can. I sure hope they can profit. I want them to grow strong. I believe their existence is good for everyone or for a community. They have a history of helping people and supporting the sports. Their owners are nice people and passionate about the sports.

Here are some companies I support in the strength sports. Some of them are competitors (there are others, I forgot). I don’t care.

APT Pro Gear https://www.prowriststraps.com/

Elite Fitness http://www.elitefts.com/

Sorinex http://store.sorinex.com/

Iron Rebel http://ironrebel.com/

Bench Daddy http://www.benchdaddy.com/

Inzer http://www.inzernet.com/


Eric’s canceled seminar in Sao Paulo and our injuries

(written on July 11)

By now, those friends – my friends and Eric’s friends – who followed the plans for Eric’s seminar on sports science in Brazil and observed it was cancelled know that his trip is not happening. I cannot go into details for reasons I will make sure to explain (in detail) in exactly one year. For those even closer friends, I can say he is doing as well as possible and he will be as fine as possible in a couple of days.

For the amazingly not so small circle of people who care about us (and about whom we care very much), I admit that “frustration” is an understatement for what I am feeling. That this, combined with the unbelievable collection of crap recently accumulated, resulted in another one of my “unique injuries”. I told Fabiano that I am an endless source of bizarre case studies in orthopedy and I can even help write the paper. This one is in the middle of “middle”, or in the middle of the middle of everything, or in the middle of the core. It happened Thursday, during a not-so-heavy rack pull, and I heard the noise of whatever undergoing whatever.

I cannot say anything about how Eric is, but he will be fine and I swear I will make sure his amazing knowledge and experience on strength training is properly published and comes public in the next few years. I owe this to him, he owes this to himself and we owe this to the world. Because one day we will all die and knowledge not shared is knowledge denied.

For my small and clandestine fellowship of freaks, I promise you that no matter what happens or how far we are, I am here for you. You are amazing people and those DXs you received are a sad illustration about medical ignorance. You are not sick: the world is. If things get tough, call me. If I don’t answer (I never do), leave a message with instructions about when to call you back.

This is a strange moment. I don’t have an explanation concerning why most of my freak friends are going through hard times. Maybe it’s a bad moon for mad people – who knows. But some things I have learned the past few days:

  1. I chose the right freak for me. He’s worth crossing the Atlantic Ocean rowing a kayak or volunteering to try a new model of teleporter. I understood the concept of “madly in love”: it means you are in love (which is different than “loving”), and not only crazier than your normal state of madness, but a different crazy. Like a different hallucinogen.
  2. “Toxic people” might not be a metaphor. Such individuals produce physical damage. We need to stay physically, digitally and psychologically away from them.
  3. Family is what you decide family is based on several criteria, but sharing genetic material is not the determinant factor.
  4. I care for my fellowship of freaks more than I thought I did.
  5. I knew Powerlifting was the core of my existence, but it is more than that. The one thing that freaks me out over everything else is the thought of not lifting. The choice between death and life without lifting is so clear it that it doesn’t require a second thought

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