The reason why people care about body count is because it the single greatest predictor of infidelity, according to psychologists
A prospective partner’s body count only matters if you’re considering getting into a long-term monogamous relationship with them with the expectation of sexual exclusivity as a higher count represents a higher infidelity risk. Otherwise, it doesn’t. If it’s a short-term relationship or a non-monogamous one, bc really doesn’t matter.
Factors found to facilitate infidelity
Number of sex partners: Greater number of sex partners before marriage predicts infidelity
As might be expected, attitudes toward infidelity specifically, permissive attitudes toward sex more generally and a greater willingness to have casual sex and to engage in sex without closeness, commitment or love (i.e., a more unrestricted sociosexual orientation) are also reliably related to infidelity (pg.71)
Fincham, F. D., & May, R. W. (2017). Infidelity in romantic relationships. Current opinion in psychology, 13, 70–74. .
A truism in psychology is that the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. This is no less true in the realm of sexual behavior. Indeed, one of the strongest predictors of marital infidelity is one’s number of prior sex partners (pg.6)
Haselton, M. G., Buss, D. M., Oubaid, V., & Angleitner, A. (2005). Sex, Lies, and Strategic Interference: The Psychology of Deception Between the Sexes. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 31(1), 3–23. .
Men apparently assess and evaluate levels of sexual activity by a woman prior to long-term commitment—behavior that would have been observable or known through social reputation in the small-group lifestyles of our ancestors. Past behavior is a good predictor of future behavior, and having a large number of sex partners prior to marriage is a statistical predictor of infidelity after marriage (pg.92)
Buss, D. M., & Schmitt, D. P. (2019). Mate preferences and their behavioral manifestations. Annual Review of Psychology, 70, 77–110. .
it would appear that the premaritally experienced females were more inclined to accept coitus with males other than their husbands after marriage. (pg.427)
Kinsey, A. C., Pomeroy, W. B., Martin, C. E., & Gebhard, P. H. (1953). Sexual behavior in the human female. Saunders. .
the odds ratio of 1.13 for lifetime sexual partners obtained with the face-to-face mode of interview indicates that the probability of infidelity increased by 13% for every additional lifetime sexual partner (pg.150)
Whisman, M. A., & Snyder, D. K. (2007). Sexual infidelity in a national survey of American women: Differences in prevalence and correlates as a function of method of assessment. Journal of Family Psychology, 21(2), 147–154. .
Generally speaking, respondents who report extensive premarital sexual experience report extensive extramarital activity. Measures of the locus of first intercourse and number of premarital partners show positive associations with (1) rating one's marriage as less happy than average, (2) the number of different extramarital partners, and (3) the intention to participate in mate-swapping activities (pg.221-222)
Athanasiou, R., & Sarkin, R. (1974). Premarital sexual behavior and postmarital adjustment. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 3(3), 207–225. .
promiscuity is in fact a good predictor of infidelity. Indeed, promiscuity among females accounted for almost twice as much variance in infidelity (r2 = .45) as it did for males (r2 = .25). (pg.177)
Hughes, S. M., & Gallup, G. G., Jr. (2003). Sex differences in morphological predictors of sexual behavior: Shoulder to hip and waist to hip ratios. Evolution and Human Behavior, 24(3), 173–178. .
Participants who had experienced sexual intimacy with a greater number of partners also reported greater extradyadic sex and extradyadic kissing inclination. (pg.344)
McAlister, A. R., Pachana, N., & Jackson, C. J. (2005). Predictors of young dating adults' inclination to engage in extradyadic sexual activities: A multi-perspective study. British Journal of Psychology, 96(3), 331–350. .
Sexual promiscuity was significantly positively correlated with emotional promiscuity [r(356) = .261, p < .001], as well with sexual infidelity [r(323) = .595, p < .001] and emotional infidelity [r(323) = .676, p < .001] (pg.390)
Pinto, R., & Arantes, J. (2017). The Relationship between Sexual and Emotional Promiscuity and Infidelity. Athens Journal of Social Sciences, 4(4), 385–398. .
Each additional sex partner between age 18 and the first union increased the net odds of infidelity by 1% (pg.56)
Treas, J., & Giesen, D. (2000). Sexual Infidelity Among Married and Cohabiting Americans. Journal of Marriage and Family, 62(1), 48–60. .
A preliminary ANOVA analysis revealed that individuals reporting a past history of infidelity tended to have a greater number of past sexual partners than those without a history of infidelity (controlling for age; M = 3.78 versus 1.24), F(1,376) = 52.16, p < .001, d = .81. (pg.351)
Barta, W. D., & Kiene, S. M. (2005). Motivations for infidelity in heterosexual dating couples: The roles of gender, personality differences, and sociosexual orientation. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 22(3), 339–360. .
Subjects reporting sex with men other than their husbands while they were married (who were 23% of the ever-married subjects) were significantly younger at first intercourse [17.7 versus 20.0 years, t(279) = 5.6, p < 0.011 and reported significantly more sexual partners [24.5 versus 3.9, t(280) = 6.5, p < 0.011 than did ever-married women who reported no extramarital affairs. (pg.150)
Essock-Vitale, S. M., & McGuire, M. T. (1985). Women's lives viewed from an evolutionary perspective: I. Sexual histories, reproductive success, and demographic characteristics of a random sample of American women. Ethology & Sociobiology, 6(3), 137–154. .
A central purpose of this research was to identify correlates of betrayal. In addition to attitudes toward betrayal, a number of other factors were found to be associated with acts of betrayal. As predicted, such factors as sexual permissiveness, an avoidant romantic style, number of romantic relationships, and early onset of sexual intercourse were all correlated with a higher incidence of betrayal behaviors. These factors are likely to promote sexual activity with a larger number of partners, which, in turn, increases the chance that betrayal will occur. (pg.247)
Feldman, S. S., & Cauffman, E. (1999). Your cheatin' heart: Attitudes, behaviors, and correlates of sexual betrayal in late adolescents. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 9(3), 227–252. .
Multivariate model fitting to infidelity and number of sexual partners (log transformed) confirmed that a Cholesky model containing parameters for additive genetic factors and the unique environment, but without shared environmental factors, provided the best explanation of the observed correlation between the two variables. The resulting genetic correlation between the two traits was .47, so nearly half the genes impacting on infidelity also affect number of sexual partners. (pg.652-653)
Cherkas, L., Oelsner, E., Mak, Y., Valdes, A., & Spector, T. (2004). Genetic Influences on Female Infidelity and Number of Sexual Partners in Humans: A Linkage and Association Study of the Role of the Vasopressin Receptor Gene (AVPR1A). Twin Research, 7(6), 649-658. .
When compared with their peers who report fewer partners, those who self-report 20 or more in their lifetime are:
Three times as likely to have cheated while married (pg.89)
Regnerus M. (2017). Cheap sex : the transformation of men marriage and monogamy. Oxford University Press. .
An indicator of whether or not the respondent has had previous sex partners is included and identifies the number of male sex partners the woman had previous to her relationship with her current primary partner… A history of numerous sex partners indicates a pattern or habit of sexual behavior that we expect will negatively influence sexual exclusivity in the current relationship. (pg.37) Having previous sexual partners greatly increased the likelihood that a woman would have a secondary sex partner. In particular, a woman with 4 or more male sex partners prior to her primary relationship was about 8.5 times more likely to have a secondary sex partnerthan a woman with no previous sex partners… Having previous sex partners also increased the likelihood that dating and married women would have secondary sex partners. In particular, married women with 4 or more previous partners were 20 times more likely to have secondary sex partners than married women with no previous sex partners (pg.41)
Forste, R., & Tanfer, K. (1996). Sexual exclusivity among dating, cohabiting, and married women. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 58(1), 33–47. .
Regarding other sexual behaviors, we examined whether number of prior sex partners and viewing pornography predicted ESI. As has been found in prior research (Feldman & Cauffman, 1999; Treas & Giesen, 2000), having had more prior sex partners predicted future ESI (pg.12)
Maddox Shaw, A. M., Rhoades, G. K., Allen, E. S., Stanley, S. M., & Markman, H. J. (2013). Predictors of Extradyadic Sexual Involvement in Unmarried Opposite-Sex Relationships. Journal of Sex Research, 50(6), 598–610.
Review Of Fitness Studies VIII: Stretching For Muscle Growth? Pain? Beta-Alanine?
Hello! There was a time awhile ago where I had posted some summaries of journal articles on general fitness. The idea was to help condense important information and make it accessible to the layperson who simply wants to get healthy. I have had some free time recently and I figured I would share some cool papers I read. With this text, I hope that everyone can learn something and that a fruitful and interesting discussion can occur below. I will try my best to answer any queries people may have. Feel free to leave any criticism as well since writing educational content is a skill I am continuously trying to hone. I am not advertising any sort of product or premium access to whatever but if you would like to offer support beyond a comment in this thread, feel free to PM me. Enjoy! Schoenfeld et al. (2022) wrote a review on the potential for stretching in between sets to be a time-efficient way to gain muscle. The theoretical basis for this novel practice consists of a few ideas. Firstly, our muscles contain many sensors that detect tension, both active and passive. We know that the active sensors are directly linked to pathways that are essential to muscle gain. We do not have much practical evidence that the passive sensors have the same links but it is possible. Other theories include flattening of the muscle cell nuclei (the control centre of the cell) and opening of specific channels in the muscle whenever we stretch. Again, this is all highly theoretical and we have yet to see any findings that explicitly demonstrate that these processes lead to muscle gain. Upon the foundation of promising animal studies, there have been a few studies looking at humans using stretching during rest periods between sets to try to elicit more muscle gains. Unfortunately, the results are fairly equivocal when looking at the entirety of the data and most of the studies were all conducted a little differently. Van Every et al. (2022) carried out an experiment in which 21 young, untrained males performed a straight leg calf-raise on a leg press machine and a seated calf-raise for 4 sets each, twice a week for 8 weeks. If you would like to understand why they did these two exercises specifically, refer to the side-note below. The catch in the study was that one calf would rest for 2 minutes between sets as one would usually do while the other calf would stretch for 30 seconds during the 2 minute rest period. The stretch would use the full load of their set. For example, if the participant was calf-raising 50 kilograms on the leg press, after the final repetition, they would keep the 50 kilograms on and immediately descend into a stretched position and hold it for 30 seconds. Unfortunately, the authors did not specify how “hard” the subjects should stretch. All the participants were familiarized with the exercises for a week prior to the exercise programme and they also did 10 repetition maximum testing to prescribe adequate loads. All sets were done to failure in the 8-12 repetition range. To observe muscle changes, the researchers used ultrasound scans and they also used a dynamometer to detect muscle strength adaptations. The ultrasound measures were conducted 48 hours away from exercise to prevent muscle swelling from influencing the observations. The authors found that the soleus grew more in the calves that had been stretched during the inter-set rest periods. However, the range of differences between groups in soleus growth spans from absolutely no difference at all to a large difference. It should also be highlighted that we expect a range of error in measurement and the finding falls within this range so it is possible this difference was not real and can be attributed to lack of precision in ultrasound technique or interpretation. The strength changes were similar in that the stretch group had greater strength improvements but the variation in results was high. Other calf muscles did not demonstrate any significant differences between groups. If we assume the greater soleus growth to be true, it may be related to the soleus’ muscle architecture. It is composed of mainly type 1 fibers (low force production but high fatigue resistance) with shorter muscle fibers that are usually rather resistant to growth. While the results are not incredible, this low-risk method of training may help with the stubborn calf muscle gains and muscle growth in general. Coming back to the review by Schoenfeld et al. (2022), they recommend that if you would like to implement stretches between sets, it should be done immediately after set completion. This is due to a phenomenon known as “residual force enhancement”. When we stretch a muscle under load as opposed to passively, it actually produces more tension. For example, instead of hopping off the calf-raise machine to do a stretch, it may be better to stay on the machine while putting yourself in the bottom, stretched position under the exercise workload. The authors advise to hold the stretch at at least an 8 on the rate of perceived exertion scale. It is also likely that stretching using the load you lift during the working sets is beneficial. TL;DR: Stretching between sets is a novel idea that may be a time-efficient way to increase muscle growth. However, much more research is needed. Side-Note: The seated calf-raise allows for better targeting of the soleus muscle, the muscle deeper in the calf. To understand why this happens, we must grasp some mechanical concepts of the muscle. A muscle is able to produce the most force at certain lengths. If the muscle is too taut or too slack, it is unable to create as much force. In the science world, this is referred to as the muscle length-tension relationship. Basically, this is because for force production to occur, proteins in our muscles need to form bridges. When the muscle is too taut or too slack, the bridges are not able to be properly built resulting in low force production. Keeping that in mind, let us take a look at the gastrocnemius, which is the calf muscle that lies on top of your soleus muscle. The gastrocnemius originates from a bone in your thigh, above and behind your knee. It travels down the back of your leg and attaches behind your heel. You can pretend that this muscle is a string that is attached between these two points. Now imagine pulling on this string and two things should happen. One, your ankle will bend which causes your toes to be pointed forward like a ballerina. Second, your knee will bend. So what is special about the gastrocnemius is that it is able to perform movements at both the knee and the ankle. However, if for example, the gastrocnemius is helping the knee bend to a great degree, like in a seated calf raise, that means that the gastrocnemius is shortening a lot. If you remember what was mentioned earlier, this means that the gastrocnemius is now at a length where it cannot produce a lot of force because of how shortened it has become. So if I were to now ask the gastrocnemius to do an ankle movement, like a seated calf raise, it would be difficult as it cannot produce much force at an already shortened length. How are we able to do a seated calf raise then? Luckily, the soleus does not attach above the knee so its length is unaffected when we bend or straighten our knee. Thus, the soleus is the main provider of force to complete the seated calf raise. This phenomenon that the gastrocnemius muscle encounters (and many others muscles as well!) is called “active insufficiency”. We are able to use active insufficiency to our advantage in many cases but perhaps we can cover that another time. The next paper we are covering is by Harvie et al. (2015) in which they explore how visual feedback affects the pain experience. Regardless if you are active or sedentary, you are bound to encounter injuries in your life. Naturally, pain is associated with these injuries and the pain sensation comes in a variety of forms. Everyone will have their own unique stories with pain and this paper will serve as an excellent tool to understanding more about how pain works and what factors affect the feeling of pain. The researchers recruited 24 people with chronic neck pain and had them perform neck rotations while wearing a virtual reality headset. The participants would be seated in a chair with a belt strapped around their body at the shoulders to isolate the neck rotation. The virtual reality headset allowed the experimenters to adjust the rotation speed of the virtual environment. For example, if they were to slow down the virtual rotation speed and you turned your head 45 degrees, it may only look like you have turned your head 35 degrees because the rotation in the virtual world is so slow. The researchers created three different conditions that each subject went through. The first was under normal settings where the virtual reality rotation and real-life rotation were matched 1 to 1. The other conditions involved either the virtual rotation being slower or faster than real-life rotation by 20%. 20% was chosen because in a previous study, people could tell that virtual rotation speeds had been adjusted if they went beyond 20% in either direction. Each subject would do 6 rotations to both sides under each condition and indicate their pain level on a 0-10 scale. Computer programs would measure how far people were able to rotate their necks before the onset of pain. The virtual environment was also different for every condition to prevent people from using visual cues as an anchor for maintaining the same rotation every time. It was found that when the virtual rotation speed was slower than real life, people were able to rotate their necks further by about 6% before the onset of pain. When the virtual rotation speed was faster, the pain-free range of motion of neck rotation was 7% less on average. These findings indicate that what we see plays a part in how we experience pain. Over the years, we have come to understand that pain is a protective alarm system that the body uses to alert us of a threat. This threat can arise from a multitude of sources. If we get punched in the face, tissues likely get damaged and our body produces pain since the damage has created a threat. In response, we may cover our face, go hide or seek treatment as we would like to protect ourselves. However, we can feel pain even when there is no tissue damage at all as long as our brain is perceiving something as a threat. Perhaps we are not sleeping well as we are stressed about an upcoming exam and suddenly we experience knee pain in a knee that was injured years ago but has healed since then. What if we open up the knee and find that there is absolutely no tissue damage? How is it possible that the knee is feeling any pain at all? Well the stress from the poor sleep and exam has built up and has become a threat to us as perceived by the brain which can accentuate pain from acute or chronic injuries. In the study, the brain sees that the neck has been rotated too much and elicits a pain response in your body. This is to protect you because it believes that if you rotate too much, you will over-stress the tissue and cause further damage. The brain is likely wrong in this case but the protective system exists nonetheless. However, the brain depends on several factors before producing pain. In this case, it is clear that it is using visual feedback to create pain. Altering the visual feedback thus changes the pain sensation accordingly. In our lives, however, pain modulation goes beyond visual feedback. An eloquent analogy I picked up from Barbell Medicine is that pain is like hunger. If you just went through a break-up, you might go through a whole tub of ice cream in one sitting. If you are out with friends you might eat more as well. There are many influences on how hungry you are and the same idea goes for pain. That is why it is incredibly important that when you are evaluating your pain, consider not only what may be happening physically or biologically but also consider what is happening psychologically or socially. Family issues? Problems at work? Feeling depressed lately? All of these examples have the capacity to moderate the pain you feel and it will be unique to each person. TL;DR: Pain is the product of a system run by your brain to protect you from threats. Threats can be physical, mental, emotional and social. Pain is like hunger, several things can influence either sensation. This study used virtual reality to alter what we see and by extension, change our pain experience. Beta-alanine is likely a supplement we have all heard about and consumed especially if you use pre-workout formulas. Let’s take a look at a meta-analysis conducted by Saunders et al. (2017) to get a better idea of what beta-alanine is and to explore its effectiveness in muscle performance. A meta-analysis is essentially a process in which multiple studies are put together to consolidate all their findings into one massive study. This helps us discover relationships that would not be possible to uncover in one study alone. Before we get into the potential performance effects, let us briefly look over how beta alanine works. As we exercise, muscles become more acidic over time which results in poorer performance. Carnosine is a protein found in our muscles and it is important for several reasons, one of which is to manage how acidic or alkaline our muscles get. Carnosine is actually partly made up of beta alanine and thus beta alanine is also necessary to prevent our muscles from getting too acidic. Knowing all this, it is clear that beta alanine may have a potential benefit in boosting muscular endurance but is that really the case? The meta-analysis found that there was a small benefit in exercise performance done over a minute and beyond. If we go below a minute - especially under 30 seconds - we do not really see any meaningful ergogenic use. This makes sense as intense activities that are short in duration will not be limited by how acidic our muscles are. The effects of beta alanine seem to be much more evident in exercises that are performed to failure rather than exercises that are not. Whether or not you are a novice or an experienced athlete, beta alanine appears to exhibit the same effects. The type of exercise also has no bearing on beta alanine and its function. The authors also did analysis on sodium bicarbonate and effects on performance when co-supplemented with beta-alanine. Sodium bicarbonate has similar mechanisms for improving endurance in that it also manages the acidity of muscles. It was discovered that sodium bicarbonate had a slightly better boost to performance when taken with beta alanine compared to taking beta alanine alone. Perhaps we can take a deeper dive into sodium bicarbonate another time as it presents some promise and other research into the compound has been done since this meta-analysis. While there is likely a small benefit to muscular endurance when supplementing with beta alanine, it is important that these improvements are only apparent when taking doses over a period of time. Taking an acute dose, in your pre-workout for example, will do nothing for performance. The authors suggest taking 3.2-6.4 grams per day for 4 to 12 weeks with the doses spread across the day (0.8-1.6 grams every few hours). The spaces between doses help prevent the occurrence of unwanted side effects like tingling sensations. TL;DR: Beta alanine likely offers a small boost to muscular endurance in activities that go beyond 30 seconds to 1 minute. You can consider supplementing with 3.2-6.4 grams per day for 4 to 12 weeks with the doses spread across the day (0.8-1.6 grams every few hours) if it is safe for you to consume. Harvie, D. S., Broecker, M., Smith, R. T., Meulders, A., Madden, V. J., & Moseley, G. L. (2015). Bogus Visual Feedback Alters Onset of Movement-Evoked Pain in People With Neck Pain. Psychological Science, 26(4), 385–392. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797614563339. Saunders, B., Elliott-Sale, K., Artioli, G. G., Swinton, P. A., Dolan, E., Roschel, H., Sale, C., & Gualano, B. (2016). β-alanine supplementation to improve exercise capacity and performance: a systematic review and meta-analysis. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 51(8), 658–669. https://doi.org/10.1136/bjsports-2016-096396. Schoenfeld, B. J., Wackerhage, H., & De Souza, E. (2022). Inter-set stretch: A potential time-efficient strategy for enhancing skeletal muscle adaptations. Frontiers in Sports and Active Living, 4. https://doi.org/10.3389/fspor.2022.1035190. Van Every, D. W., Coleman, M., Rosa, A., Zambrano, H., Plotkin, D., Torres, X., Mercado, M., De Souza, E. O., Alto, A., Oberlin, D. J., Vigotsky, A. D., & Schoenfeld, B. J. (2022). Loaded inter-set stretch may selectively enhance muscular adaptations of the plantar flexors. PloS One, 17(9), e0273451. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0273451.
I will continue to update this post as reviews come in. Rotten Tomatoes: Certified Fresh Critics Consensus: Narratively, it might be fairly standard stuff -- but visually speaking, Avatar: The Way of Water is a stunningly immersive experience.
Number of Reviews
Metacritic: 69 (52 Reviews) Sample Reviews: The only part of me that was moved was my eyeballs. - Owen Gleiberman, Variety Ultimately, it’s the sincerity of Cameron’s belief in this fantastical world he’s created that makes it memorable. - David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter There is beauty everywhere you look, from the spectacle provided by nature’s creations, the tactile sense you get from the skin and hair of humans and other natural life, and the emotional expressions of strength and sensitivity. - Todd McCarthy, Deadline Hollywood Daily When Cameron’s film calms down, and the stunning imagery that cinematographer Russell Carpenter has created with the film’s enormous visual-effects team can linger for a while, its imagination and scope can occasionally feel quite magical. - William Bibbiani, TheWrap James Cameron’s sequel is a truly dazzling cinematic experience that will have you floating on a blockbuster high. 3.5/4 - Lindsey Bahr, Associated Press If "The Way of Water" was the last film Cameron ever made, it’d be appropriate, as all of his cinematic obsessions coalesce within this gargantuan slice of mind-boggling spectacle presented with classical action-adventure storytelling. 3.5/4 - Katie Walsh, Tribune News Service An emotionally charged outing that again dips into themes of colonization while adding environmental issues and relatable family drama. 3/4 - Brian Truitt, USA Today The Way of Water doesn’t necessarily check all those boxes, but what it does right will offer spectators moments of awe, full-body immersion and genuine beauty. 2/4 - Ann Hornaday, Washington Post Cameron pulls you down so deep, and sets you so gently adrift, that at times you don’t feel like you’re watching a movie so much as floating in one. - Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times Cameron’s embrace of the idealism of adolescence, of the capacity for moral outrage as well as wonder, is the emotional heart of the movie. - A.O. Scott, New York Times Whoever thought that a 10-foot-tall blue alien would be such a sight for sore eyes? 4/4 - Johnny Oleksinski, New York Post Avatar: The Way of Water is such a screen-popping visual feast it earns the 3-hour, 12-minute running time, though the primarily aquatic setting might contribute to some viewers dashing out for a bathroom break. 3.5/4 - Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-Times The Way of Water has a way of pulling you in, surrounding you with gorgeous, violent chaos and finishing with a quick rinse to get the remnants of its teeny-tiny plot out of your eyes by the final credits. 3/4 - Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune On more than one occasion we’re told that “the way of water has no beginning and no end.” No kidding. 1/4 - Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle That's the essence of "The Way of Water": It's sheer experience above all else, with a solid, easy-to-follow story underneath it. A - Adam Graham, Detroit News Avatar: The Way of Water transforms from simple wonder to something truly jaw-dropping. - Richard Whittaker, Austin Chronicle Cameron's limitations as storyteller remain as crystal clear as the water. But one does not look to Avatar for narrative sophistication. - A.A. Dowd, Chron It’s still more of a spectacle than a movie. But as spectacles go, it’s a big one. 3/5 - Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic Like the original, it’s “Dances with Wolves” in outer space. Only dumber. 2/4 - Soren Andersen, Seattle Times The 3-D special effects remain exceptional, but the screenplay is better this time, with a storyline more emotionally engaging than in the original. When people and critters die, we feel it this time. 4/4 - Randy Myers, San Jose Mercury News It’s time well spent for a movie set in deep space that turns out to be a free-flowing whale of a tale. 3.5/4 - Peter Howell, Toronto Star The floatingly bland plot is like a children’s story without the humour; a YA story without the emotional wound; an action thriller without the hard edge of real excitement. 2/5 - Peter Bradshaw, Guardian If Cameron’s worldbuilding is exhausting, it also has an epic sincerity far from the lazy cash grab of most sequels. Lazy Cameron is not. 3/5 - Danny Leigh, Financial Times Watching the film [feels] like being waterboarded with turquoise cement. 1/5 - Robbie Collin, Daily Telegraph (UK) I can’t say that I cared all that much about its story, its themes, or its characters, but its unimpeachable effects work made it feel like I’d locked eyes with the future. 3/5 - Clarisse Loughrey, Independent (UK) Plot-wise, this movie is treading water. But that’s fine, because the water’s lovely. 4/5 - Charlotte O'Sullivan, London Evening Standard Cover your eyes if you long ago tired of work that prides itself on “world building”. Flee the building if you longer ago wearied of worlds built to the aesthetics of Roger Dean covers for 1970s Yes albums. 2/5 - Donald Clarke, Irish Times Does exactly what is expected from it even if it eventually fails to move the narrative beyond the obvious "good guys Vs stereotypical villains" narrative. 3/5 - Linda Marric, The Jewish Chronicle A meticulous world-building as astonishing and enveloping as anything we've ever seen on screen — until that crown is passed, inevitably, in December 2024, the projected release date for Avatar 3. A- - Leah Greenblatt, Entertainment Weekly The Way of Water insists that times haven’t changed; it is heedless of contemporary industry undulations. That swaggering energy is, in large part, what makes the film such a pleasure to watch. - Richard Lawson, Vanity Fair The Way of Water is the wave of the future, rolling in whether you like it or not. - Stephanie Zacharek, TIME Magazine For The Way of Water, the decadence is more than enough -- for cinemas that have been starved of authentic spectacle, finally, here’s a gorgeous three-course meal of it. - David Sims, The Atlantic Cameron’s all-encompassing style has a way of making other blockbusters feel small, vague. The Way of Water, in line with his best work, is more affecting for knowing its audience, for digging into primal feelings about being misunderstood. - K. Austin Collins, Rolling Stone If the first Avatar is remarkable because it shows us wondrous lands nothing like our own, The Way of Water is remarkable because it shows us that this world is, in fact, very much like our own. - Bilge Ebiri, New York Magazine/Vulture It’s a leap beyond even what he pulled off with the first film, a phantasmagorical, fully immersive waking dream of a movie in which something impossible is happening on-screen at almost every moment. 5/5 - Nick De Semlyen, Empire Magazine An extraordinary visual spectacle that can’t compare on the narrative side — although, to be fair, that’s a mighty high bar. - Tim Grierson, Screen International A feat of coldly-precise engineering, but not a good movie. 2/5 - David Jenkins, Little White Lies ‘The most dangerous thing about Pandora,’ someone muses sagely at one point, ‘is that you grow to love it too much.’ Jim Cameron disagrees. He can’t love this place enough – and it’s infectious. 4/5 - Philip De Semlyen, Time Out James Cameron has done it again with Avatar: The Way of Water, a state-of-the-art exercise that rekindles that sense of wonder and demands to be seen by anyone with lingering interest in watching movies in theaters. - Brian Lowry, CNN.com The 3D visuals are undoubtedly cool but it shouldn’t be the only reason to see this film - but it is. 2.5/5 - Wenlei Ma, News.com.au Creatively speaking, [it's] of a piece with its predecessor, a would-be epic of boundary-pushing digi-grandeur in service of Pocahontas-style us-vs-them mush. - Nick Schager, The Daily Beast For now, the only thing that matters is that after 13 years of being a punchline, “going back to Pandora” just became the best deal on Earth for the price of a movie ticket. A- - David Ehrlich, indieWire Dazzling, epic, and yet surprisingly intimate, Cameron's Avatar sequel expands on this exquisite world in ways both passionate and futuristic. A - Tomris Laffly, AV Club For all the genuine thrills provided by its pioneering pageantry, Way of Water ultimately leaves you with a soul-nagging query: What price entertainment? 3/4 - Keith Uhlich, Slant Magazine It demands the biggest screen you can find so that its most potent elements — from its impossible scale and skillful spectacle, to its more complete range of emotions and thematic romanticism — can be completely absorbed. - Eric Francisco, Inverse [A] simple but engaging story in an imaginative, beautiful environment. - Jordan Hoffman, Polygon Cameron loses track of his characters, snarls his story, squanders his star power, and then dizzies 3D audiences with so much whiz-bang that they might feel attacked in lieu of awed. - Kristy Puchko, Mashable When Cameron’s 3D cauldron of spells is at a high boil, the end result is nothing less than an upgrade on reality. At its best, you find yourself resenting the edges of the screen, for keeping you from feeling fully immersed in this world. B+ - Liz Shannon Miller, Consequence As a story, The Way of Water disappoints, even as its visuals overwhelm. C+ - Isaac Feldberg, Above the Line Very much feels like a decade’s worth of accumulated ideas crammed into a single film. 7/10 - Matt Singer, ScreenCrush This wildly entertaining film isn't a retread of Avatar, but a film in which fans can pick out thematic and even visual elements of Titanic, Aliens, The Abyss, and The Terminator films. 3.5/4 - Brian Tallerico, RogerEbert.com True movie magic. The Way of Water is a visual marvel loaded with groundbreaking technical feats that always feel in service of character and world-building. 4.5/5 - Perri Nemiroff, Perri Nemiroff (YouTube) Overwritten, when it isn’t underwritten. Overwrought. Overblown. I’m over it. 1.5/5 - Adam Kempenaar, Filmspotting SYNOPSIS: Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, “Avatar: The Way of Water” begins to tell the story of the Sully family (Jake, Neytiri, and their kids), the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive, and the tragedies they endure. CAST:
Sam Worthington as Jake Sully
Zoe Saldaña as Neytiri
Sigourney Weaver as Kiri
Stephen Lang as Colonel Miles Quaritch
Cliff Curtis as Tonowari
Joel David Moore as Dr. Norm Spellman
CCH Pounder as Mo'at
Edie Falco as General Frances Ardmore
Jemaine Clement as Dr. Ian Garvin
Kate Winslet as Ronal
DIRECTED BY: James Cameron PRODUCED BY: James Cameron, Jon Landau SCREENPLAY BY: James Cameron, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver STORY BY: James Cameron, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, Josh Friedman, Shane Salerno EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: David Valdes, Richard Baneham DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: Russell Carpenter PRODUCTION DESIGNERS: Dylan Cole, Ben Procter EDITED BY: Stephen Rivkin, David Brenner, John Refoua, James Cameron MUSIC BY: Simon Franglen COSTUME DESIGNER: Deborah L. Scott RELEASE DATE: December 16, 2022
Strange Things Volume II: Triffin's Dilemma and The Dollar Milkshake
As the Fed begins their journey into a deflationary blizzard, they are beginning to break markets across the globe. As the World Reserve Currency, over 60% of all international trade is done in Dollars, and USDs are the largest Foreign Exchange (Forex) holdings by far for global central banks. Now all foreign currencies are crashing against the Dollar as the vicious feedback loops of Triffin’s Dilemma come home to roost. The Dollar Milkshake has begun. The Fed, knowingly or unknowingly, has walked into this trap- and now they find themselves caught underneath theSword of Damocles, with no way out… Sword Of Damocles -------------------------- “The famed “sword of Damocles” dates back to an ancient moral parable popularized by the Roman philosopher Cicero in his 45 B.C. book “Tusculan Disputations.” Cicero’s version of the tale centers on Dionysius II, a tyrannical king who once ruled over the Sicilian city of Syracuse during the fourth and fifth centuries B.C. Though rich and powerful, Dionysius was supremely unhappy. His iron-fisted rule had made him many enemies, and he was tormented by fears of assassination—so much so that he slept in a bedchamber surrounded by a moat and only trusted his daughters to shave his beard with a razor. As Cicero tells it, the king’s dissatisfaction came to a head one day after a court flatterer named Damocles showered him with compliments and remarked how blissful his life must be. “Since this life delights you,” an annoyed Dionysius replied, “do you wish to taste it yourself and make a trial of my good fortune?” When Damocles agreed, Dionysius seated him on a golden couch and ordered a host of servants wait on him. He was treated to succulent cuts of meat and lavished with scented perfumes and ointments. Damocles couldn’t believe his luck, but just as he was starting to enjoy the life of a king, he noticed that Dionysius had also hung a razor-sharp sword from the ceiling. It was positioned over Damocles’ head, suspended only by a single strand of horsehair. From then on, the courtier’s fear for his life made it impossible for him to savor the opulence of the feast or enjoy the servants. After casting several nervous glances at the blade dangling above him, he asked to be excused, saying he no longer wished to be so fortunate.” —--------------- Damocles’ story is a cautionary tale of being careful of what you wish for- Those who strive for power often unknowingly create the very systems that lead to their own eventual downfall. The Sword is often used as a metaphor for a looming danger; a hidden trap that can obliterate those unaware of the great risk that hegemony brings. Heavy lies the head which wears the crown. There are several Swords of Damocles hanging over the world today, but the one least understood and least believed until now is Triffin’s Dilemma, which lays the bedrock for the Dollar Milkshake Theory. I’ve already written extensively about Triffin’s Dilemma around a year ago inPart 1.5andPart 4.3of my Dollar Endgame Series, but let’s recap again. Here’s a great summary- read both sides of the dilemma: Triffin's Dilemma Summarized
Essentially, Triffin noted that there was a fundamental flaw in the system: by virtue of the fact that the United States is a World Reserve Currency holder, the global financial system has built in GLOBAL demand for Dollars. No other fiat currency has this. How is this demand remedied? With supply of course! The United States thus is forced to run current account deficits - meaning it must send more dollars out into the world than it receives on a net basis. This has several implications, which again, I already outlined- but I will list in summary format below:
The United States has to be a net importer, ie it must run trade deficits, in order to supply the world with dollars. Remember, dollars and goods are opposite sides of the same equation, so a greater trade deficits means that more dollars are flowing out to the world.
(This will devastate US domestic manufacturing, causing political/social/economic issues at home.)
These dollars flow outwards into the global economy, and are picked up by institutions in a variety of ways.
First, foreign central banks will have to hold dollars as Foreign Exchange Reserves to defend their currency in case of attack on the Forex markets. This was demonstrated during the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997-98, when the Thai Baht, Malaysian Ringgit, and Philippine Peso (among other East Asian currencies) plunged against the Dollar. Their central banks attempted to defend the pegs but they failed.
Second, companies will need Dollars for trade- as the USD makes up over 60% of global trade volume, and has the deepest and most liquid forex market by far, even small firms that need to transact cross border trade will have to acquire USDs in order to operate. When South Africa and Chile trade, they don’t want to use Mexican Pesos or Korean Won- they want Dollars.
Foreign governments need dollars. There are several countries already who have adopted the Dollar as a replacement for their own currency- Ecuador and Zimbabwe being prime examples. There’s a full list here.
The example I gave in Part 1.5 was that of Liberia, a small West African Nation looking to enter global trade. Needing to hold dollars as part of their exchange reserves, the Liberian Central Bank begins buying USDs on the open market. The process works in a similar fashion for large Liberian export companies. Dollar Recycling Essentially, they print their own currency to buy Dollars. Wanting to earn interest on this massive cash hoard when it isn’t being used, they buy Treasuries and other US debt securities to get a yield. As their domestic economy grows, their need and dependence on the Dollar grows as well. Their Central Bank builds up larger and larger hoards of Treasuries and Dollars. The entire thesis is that during times of crisis, they can sell the Treasuries for USD, and use the USDs to buy back their own currency on the market- supporting its value and therefore defending the peg. This buying pressure on USDs and Treasuries confers a massive benefit to the United States- The Exorbitant Privilege This buildup of excess dollars ends up circulating overseas in banks, trade brokers, central banks, governments and companies. These overseas dollars are called the Eurodollar system- a 2016 research paper estimated the size to be around $13.8 Trillion USD. This system is not under official Federal Reserve jurisdiction so it is difficult to get accurate numbers on its size. https://preview.redd.it/92wcmhdb0uq91.png?width=691&format=png&auto=webp&s=20dbaf63f75ff6f2e255fff06e6f48c03170b11b This means the Dollar is always artificially stronger than it should be- and during financial calamity, the dollar is a safe haven as there are guaranteed bidders. All this dollar denominated debt paired with the global need for dollars in trade creates strong and persistent dollar demand. Demand that MUST be satisfied. This creates systemic risk on a worldwide scale- an unforeseen Sword of Damocles that hangs above the global financial system. I’ve been trying to foreshadow this in my Dollar Endgame Series. Triffin’s Dilemma is the basis for the Dollar Milkshake Theory posited by Brent Johnson.
The Dollar Milkshake
Milkshake of Liquidity In 2021, Brent worked with RealVision to create a short summary of his thesis- the videocan be found here. I should note that Brent has had this theory for years, dating back to 2018, when he first came on podcasts and interviews and laid out his theory (like this video, for example). Here’s the summary below: ----- “A giant milkshake of liquidity has been created by global central banks with the dollar as its key ingredient - but if the dollar moves higher this milkshake will be sucked into the US creating a vicious spiral that could quickly destabilize financial markets. The US dollar is the bedrock of the world's financial system. It greases the wheels of global commerce and exchange- the availability of dollars, cost of dollars, and the level of the dollar itself each can have an outsized impact on economies and investment opportunities. But more important than the absolute level or availability of dollars is the rate of change in the level of the dollar. If the level of the dollar moves too quickly and particularly if the level rises too fast then problems start popping up all over the place (foreign countries begin defaulting). Today however many people are convinced that both the role of the Dollar is diminishing and the level of the dollar will only decline. People think that the US is printing so many dollars that the world will be awash with the greenback causing the value of the dollar to fall. Now it's true that the US is printing a lot of dollars – but other countries are also printing their own currencies in similar amounts so in theory it should even out in terms of value. But the hidden issue is the difference in demand. Remember the global financial system is built on the US dollar which means even if they don't want them everybody still needs them and if you need something you don't really have much choice. (See DXY Index): DXY Index Although many countries like China are trying to reduce their reliance on dollar transactions this will be a very slow transition. In the meantime the risks of a currency or sovereign debt crisis continue to rise. But now countries like China and Japan need dollars to buy copper from Australia so the Chinese and the Japanese owe dollars and Australia is getting paid in dollars. Europe and Asia currently doing very limited amount of non-dollar transactions for oil so they still need dollars to buy oil from saudi and again dollars get hoovered up on both sides Asia and Europe need dollars to buy soybeans from Brazil. This pulls in yet more dollars - everybody needs dollars for trade invoices, central bank currency reserves and servicing massive cross-border dollar denominated debts of governments and corporations outside the USA. And the dollar-denominated debt is key- if they don't service their debts or walk away from their dollar debts their funding costs rise putting great financial pressure on their domestic economies. Not only that, it can lead to a credit contraction and a rapid tightening of dollar supply. The US is happy with the reliance on the greenback they own the settlement system which benefits the US banks who process all the dollars and act as gatekeepers to the Dollar system they police and control the access to the system which benefits the US military machine where defense spending is in excess of any other country so naturally the US benefits from the massive volumes of dollar usage. https://preview.redd.it/yq1f1anq0uq91.png?width=1140&format=png&auto=webp&s=27447e2acec884848a5c70ab3651820e487fc0f3 Other countries have naturally been grumbling about being held hostage to the situation but the choices are limited. What it does mean is that dollars need to be constantly sucked out of the USA because other countries all over the world need them to do business and of course the more people there are who need and want those dollars the more is the pressure on the price of dollars to go up. In fact, global demand is so high that the supply of dollars is just not enough to keep up, even with the US continually printing money. This is why we haven't seen consistently rising US inflation despite so many QE and stimulus programs since the global financial crisis in 2008. But, the real risk comes when other economies start to slow down or when the US starts to grow relative to the other economies. If there is relatively less economic activity elsewhere in the world then there are fewer dollars in global circulation for others to use in their daily business and of course if there are fewer in circulation then the price goes up as people chase that dwindling source of dollars. Which is terrible for countries that are slowing down because just when they are suffering economically they still need to pay for many goods in dollars and they still need to service their debts which of course are often in dollars too. So the vortex begins or as we like to say the dollar milkshake- As the level of the dollar rises the rest of the world needs to print more and more of its own currency to then convert to dollars to pay for goods and to service its dollar debt this means the dollar just keeps on rising in response many countries will be forced to devalue their own currencies so of course the dollar rises again and this puts a huge strain on the global system. (see the charts below:) JPY/USD GBP/USD EUUSD To make matters worse in this environment the US looks like an attractive safe haven so the US ends up sucking in the capital from the rest of the world-the dollar rises again. Pretty soon you have a full-scale sovereign bond and currency crisis. https://preview.redd.it/72nlain01uq91.png?width=1141&format=png&auto=webp&s=cbaa411acc88acb3849949d84a36624d75d6cfc4 We're now into that final napalm run that sees the dollar and dollar assets accelerate even higher and this completely undermines global markets. Central banks try to prevent disorderly moves, but the global markets are bigger and the momentum unstoppable once it takes hold. And that is the risk that very few people see coming but that everyone should have a hedge against -when the US sucks up the dollar milkshake, bad things are going to happen. Worst of all there's no alternatives- what are you going to use-- Chinese Yuan? Japanese Yen? the Euro?? Now, like it or not we're stuck with a dollar underpinning the global financial system.” —------------- Why is it playing out now, in real time?? It all leads back to atweet I made in a thread on September 16th. Tweet Thread about the Yuan The Fed, rushing to avoid a financial crisis in March 2020, printed trillions. This spurred inflation, which they then swore to fight. Thus they began hiking interest rates on March 16th, and began Quantitative Tightening this summer. QE had stopped- No new dollars were flowing out into a system which has a constant demand for them. Worse yet, they were hiking completely blind- Although the Fed is very far behind the curve, (meaning they are hiking far too late to really combat inflation)- other countries are even farther behind! Japan has rates currently at 0.00- 0.25%, and the Eurozone is at 1.25%. These central banks have barely begun hiking, and some even swear to keep them at the zero-bound. By hiking domestic interest rates above foreign ones, the Fed is incentivizing what are called carry trades. Since there is a spread between the Yen and the Dollar in terms of interest rates, it thus is profitable for traders to borrow in Yen (shorting it essentially) and buy Dollars, which can earn 2.25% interest. The spread would be around 2%. DXY rises, and the Yen falls, in a vicious feedback loop. Thus capital flows out of Japan, and into the US. The US sucks up the Dollar Milkshake, draining global liquidity. As I’ve stated before, this has seriously dangerous implications for the global financial system. For those of you who don’t believe this could be foreseen, check out the ending paragraphs of Dollar Endgame Part 4.3 - “Economic Warfare and the End of Bretton Woods” published February 16, 2022: Triffin's Dilemma is the Final Nail What I’ve been attempting to do in my work is restate Triffins’ Dilemma, and by extension the Dollar Milkshake, in other terms- to come at the issue from different angles. Currently the Fed is not printing money. Which is thus causing havoc in global trade (seen in the currency markets) because not enough dollars are flowing out to satisfy demand. The Fed must therefore restart QE unless it wants to spur a collapse on a global scale. Remember, all these foreign countries NEED to buy, borrow and trade in a currency that THEY CANNOT PRINT! We do not have enough time here to go in depth on the Yen, Yuan, Pound or the Euro- all these currencies have different macro factors and trade factors which affect their currencies to a large degree. But the largest factor by FAR is Triffin’s Dilemma + the Dollar Milkshake, and their desperate need for dollars. That is why basically every fiat currency is collapsing versus the Dollar. The Fed, knowingly or not, is basically in charge of the global financial system. They may shout, “We raise rates in the US to fight inflation, global consequences be damned!!” - But that’s a hell of a lot more difficult to follow when large G7 countries are in the early stages of a full blown currency crisis. The most serious implication is that the Fed is responsible for supplying dollars to everyone. When they raise rates, they trigger a margin call on the entire world. They need to bail them out by supplying them with fresh dollars to stabilize their currencies. In other words, the Fed has to run the loosest and most accommodative monetary policy worldwide- they must keep rates as low as possible, and print as much as possible, in order to keep the global financial system running. If they don’t do that, sovereigns begin to blow up, like Japan did last week and like England did on Wednesday. And if the world’s financial system implodes, they must bail out not only the United States, but virtually every global central bank. This is the Sword of Damocles. The money needed for this would be well in the dozens of trillions. The Dollar Endgame Approaches… —-------------------------------------------------------------
(Many of you have been messaging me with questions, rebuttals or comments. I’ll do my best to answer some of the more poignant ones here.)
—----- Q: I’ve been reading your work, you keep saying the dollar is going to fall in value, and be inflated away. Now you’re switching sides and joining the dollar bull faction. Seems like you don’t know what you’re talking about! A: You’re mixing up my statements. When I discuss the dollar losing value, I am referring to it falling in ABSOLUTE value, against goods and services produced in the real economy. This is what is called inflation. I made this call in 2021, and so far, it has proven right as inflation has accelerated. The dollar gaining strength ONLY applies to foreign currency exchange markets (Forex)- remember, DXY, JPYUSD, and other currency pairs are RELATIVE indicators of value. Therefore, both JPY and USD can be falling in real terms (inflation) but if one is falling faster, then that one will lose value relative to the other. Also, Forex markets are correlated with, but not an exact match, for inflation. I attempted to foreshadow the entire dollar bull thesis in the conclusion of Part 1 of the Dollar Endgame, posted well over a year ago- Unraveling of the Currency Markets I did not give an estimate on when this would happen, or how long DXY would be whipsawed upwards, because I truly do not know. I do know that eventually the Fed will likely open up swap lines, flooding the Eurodollar market with fresh greenbacks and easing the dollar short squeeze. Then selling pressure will resume on the dollar. They would only likely do this when things get truly calamitous- and we are on our way towards getting there. The US bond market is currently in dire straits, which matches the prediction of spiking interest rates. The 2yr Treasury is at 4.1%, it was at 3.9% just a few days ago. Only a matter of time until the selloff gets worse. —------ Q: Foreign Central banks can find a way out. They can just use their reserves to buy back their own currency. Sure, they can try that. It’ll work for a while- but what happens once they run out of reserves, which basically always happens? I can’t think of a time in financial history that a country has been able to defend a currency peg against a sustained attack. Global Forex Reserves They’ll run out of bullets, like they always do, and basically the only option left will be to hike interest rates, to attract capital to flow back into their country. But how will they do that withglobal debt to GDP at 356%? If all these countries do that, they will cause a global depression on a scale never seen before. Britain, for example, has a bit over $100B of reserves. That provides maybe a few months of cover in the Forex markets until they’re done. Furthermore, you are ignoring another vicious feedback loop. When the foreign banks sell US Treasuries, this drives up yields in the US, which makes even more capital flow to the US! This weakens their currency even further. FX Feedback Loop To add insult to injury, this increases US Treasury borrowing costs, which means even if the Fed completely ignores the global economy imploding, the US will pay much more in interest. We will reach insolvency even faster than anyone believes. The 2yr Treasury bond is above 4%- with $31T of debt, that means when we refinance we will pay $1.24 Trillion in interest alone. Who's going to buy that debt? The only entity with a balance sheet large enough to absorb that is the Fed. Restarting QE in 3...2…1… —---- Q: I live in England. With the Pound collapsing, what can I do? What will happen from here? How will the governments respond? England, and Europe in general, is in serious trouble. You guys are currently facing a severe energy crisis stemming from Russia cutting off Nord Stream 1 in early September and now with Nord Stream 2 offline due to a mysterious leak, energy supplies will be even more tight. Not to mention, you have a pretty high debt to GDP at 95%. Britain is a net importer, and is still running government deficits of £15.8 billion (recorded in Q1 2022). Basically, you guys are the United States without your own large scale energy and defense sector, and without Empire status and a World Reserve Currency that you once had. The Pound will almost certainly continue falling against the Dollar. The Bank of England panicked on Wednesday in reaction to a $100M margin call on British pension funds, and now has begun buying long dated (10yr) gilts, or government bonds. They’re doing this as inflation is spiking there even worse than the US, and the nation faces a currency crisis as the Pound is nearing parity with the Dollar. BOE announces bond-buying scheme (9/28/22) I will not sugarcoat it, things will get rough. You need to hold cash, make sure your job, business, or investments are secure (ie you have cashflow) and hunker down. Eliminate any unnecessary purchases. If you can, buy USDs as they will likely continue to rise and will hold value better than your own currency. If Parliament goes through with more tax cuts, that will only make the fiscal situation worse and result in more borrowing, and thus more money printing in the end. —---- Q: What does this mean for Gamestop? For the domestic US economy? Gamestop will continue to operate as I am sure they have been- investing in growth and expanding their Web3 platform. Fiat is fundamentally broken. This much is clear- we need a new financial system not based on flawed 16th fractional banking principles or “trust me bro” financial intermediaries. My hope is that they are at the forefront of a new financial system which does not require centralized authorities or custodians- one where you truly own your assets, and debasement is impossible. I haven’t really written about GME extensively because it’s been covered so well by others, and I don’t feel I have that much to add. As for the US economy, we are still in a deep recession, no matter what the politicians say- and it will get worse. But our economic troubles, at least in the short term (6 months) will not be as severe as the rest of the world due to the aforementioned Dollar Milkshake. The debt crisis is still looming, midterms are approaching, and the government continues to deficit spend as if there’s no tomorrow. As the global monetary system unravels, yields will spike, the deleveraging will get worse, and our dollar will get stronger. The fundamental factors continue to deteriorate. I’ve covered the US enough so I'll leave it there. —------ Q: Did you know about the Dollar Milkshake Theory before recently? What did you think of it? Of course I knew about it, I’ve been following Brent Johnson since he appeared on RealVision and Macrovoices. He laid out the entire theory in 2018 in a long form interview here. I listened to it maybe a couple times, and at the time I thought he was right- I just didn’t know how right he was. Brent and I have followed each other and been chatting a little on Twitter- his handle is SantiagoAuFund, I highly recommend you give him a follow. Twitter Chat I’ve never met him in person, but from what I can see, his predictions are more accurate than almost anyone else in finance. Again, all credit to him- he truly understands the global monetary system on a fundamental level. I believed him when he said the dollar would rally- but the speed and strength of the rally has surprised me. I’ve heard him predict DXY could go to 150, mirroring the massive DXY squeeze post the 1970s stagflation. He could very easily be right- and the absolute chaos this would mean for global trade and finance are unfathomable. History of DXY —---------- Q: The Pound and Euro are falling just because of the energy crisis there. That's it! Why is the Yen falling then? How about the Yuan? Those countries are not currently undergoing an energy crisis. Let’s review the year to date performance of most fiat currencies vs the dollar: Japanese Yen: -20.31% Chinese Yuan: -10.79% South African Rand: -10.95% English Pound: -18.18% Euro: -14.01% Swiss Franc: -6.89% South Korean Won: -16.73% Indian Rupee: -8.60% Turkish Lira: -27.95% There are only a handful of currencies positive against the dollar, the most notable being the Russian Ruble and the Brazilian Real- two countries which have massive commodity resources and are strong exporters. In an inflationary environment, hard assets do best, so this is no surprise. —------ Q: What can the average person do to prepare? What are you doing? Obligatory this is NOT financial advice This is an extremely difficult question, as there are so many factors. You need to ask yourself, what is your financial situation like? How much disposable income do you have? What things could you cut back on? I can’t give you specific ideas without knowing your situation. Personally, I am building up savings and cutting down on expenses. I’m getting ready for a severe recession/depression in the US and trying to find ways to increase my income, maybe a side hustle or switching jobs. I am holding my GME and not selling- I still have some shares in Fidelity that I need to DRS (I know, sorry, I was procrastinating). For the next few months, I believe there will be accelerating deflation as interest rates spike and the debt cycle begins to unwind. But like I’ve stated before, this will lead us towards a second Great Depression very rapidly, and to avoid the deflationary blizzard the Fed will restart QE on a scale never seen before. QE Infinity. This will be the impetus for even worse inflation- 25%+ by this time next year. It’s hard to prepare for this, and easy to feel hopeless. It’s important to know that we have been through monetary crises before, and society did not devolve into a zombie apocalypse. You are not alone, and we will get through this together. It’s also important to note that we are holding the most lopsided investment opportunity of a generation. Any money you put in there can be grown by orders of magnitude. We are at the end of the Central Bankers game- and although it will be painful, we will rid the world of them, I believe, and build a new financial system based on blockchains which will disintermediate the institutions. They have everything to lose. —------ Q: I want to learn more, where can I do? What can I do to keep up to date with everything? You can start by reading books, listening to podcasts, and checking the news to stay abreast of developments. I have a book list linked at the end of the Dollar Endgame posts. I’ll be covering the central bank clown show on Twitter, you can follow me there if you like. I’ll also include links to some of my favorite macro people below:
I’m still finishing up the finale for Dollar Endgame- I should have it out soon. I’m also writing an addendum to the series which is purely Q&A to answer questions and concerns. Sorry for the wait. —------------------- Nothing on this Post constitutes investment advice, performance data or any recommendation that any security, portfolio of securities, investment product, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person.
Reviews of banking services & products thread for December 2022 : Request or post reviews here.
Which bank do you recommend for savings account or fixed deposits?
How's your experience with wealth management services? For example, you can discuss your experience with Citigold / CitiPriority, Kotak Privy League, DB WealthPro, Axis Burgundy, ICICI Bank Wealth Management etc.
What bank offers the best forex rates?
Discuss the quality of the bank's mobile apps and the services they offer.
How are the lending practices at your bank? Did your home loan / car loan / education loan get approved on time Were you required to purchase additional products (like insurance) to avail a loan?
You can also ask for a general review of a particular product or services that you have been researching:
Is bank X good? Is it recommended for basic services no-frills accounts?
but please avoid asking for personal advice. The discussion is meant for consumption by a broader audience. For advice regarding your personal situation (like My family is pressurising me to take a home loan, what would you suggest?), the bi-weekly advice thread is recommended. Personal advice queries and comments will be removed to ensure that older threads provide sufficient historical reviews on products and services. Reviews posted here can be relied upon by newcomers to evaluate customer experience. Please confine the thread only to reviews or requests for reviews of products and services. Links to previous threads
Dec. 7. Qunacy Roundup. Great Currency Reset schedule. Putin & Dolly Parton slam Satan, whose rule is actually collapsing. Electric cars sterilize fetuses. Proof that JFK Jr. is alive. Queen Romana is in good health, thanks for asking.
As usual, anything in brackets  is my comment. Judy Byington of Dinar Chronicles summarizes the current GREAT Current Reset goalposts. She even gives her sources. (Note the similarities to the; last 87865 goalpost announcements. Will probably be moved by the time I post this.)
On On Tues. 6 Dec. a small amount of monies was set to be released to some in Tier 3, while a week later on Tues. 13 Dec. Tier 3 could be fully liquid. …a High Up Source.
Redemption Centers should get notified tomorrow Wed. 6 Dec. on their schedules. …Bruce
A German source said we should see the Iraqi Dinar International rate on the Forex after 12:01 am tonight. …Bruce
Tier 4B should be notified to set appointments sometime on Wed. 7 Dec. for exchanges to begin on Thurs. 8 Dec. If we don’t get notified Wed. we should get notified Thurs and begin Thurs. …Bruce
On Thurs. 8 Dec. is the date that all monies flow in to where they are supposed to be such as Bond Holders, Bond Sellers, Farm Accounts, CMKX, etc. …Bruce
On Tues. 6 Dec. a small amount of monies was set to be released to some in Tier 3, while a week later on Tues. 13 Dec. Tier 3 could be fully liquid. …a High Up Source.
Tier 4B could be notified of appointment setting at any time from now to Jan. 2023. …Dr. Tom
[Source: absolutely guaranteed to be real JFK Jr. Telegram Channel] Tues. 6 Dec. Mission 1 Complete 7:15 pm EST
[Source: Benjamin Fulford, conspiracy theorist based in Asia. Definite antisemite. Excerpts]
Lost tribes of Israel and space Nazis come out of closet as Satanic rule collapses. There can be no doubt the planet earth is going through changes that are beyond biblical in proportion. That is why an ancient secret society -with roots going back to the biblical Jacob in Egypt- as well as space Nazis on flying saucers are coming out of the closet. This is happening because an esoteric war that has been raging for thousands of years is coming to an end. What we are witnessing is an end to millennia of Satanic rule on this planet. Let us start with events in China because they hold the key to so much else that is happening and is about to happen. China was touted by top Satanist Klaus Schwab Rothschild (Rothschild=red shield of satan) as the model for their digital human animal farm New World Order. he plan the Satanists had for this planet was to genetically modify every human into farm animal-type obedience, microchip their brains and control every aspect of their lives through constant, intrusive digital surveillance. In other words, literally, turn the planet into a giant human farm. [China implemented all this, blah, blah blah] Well, the Satanists underestimated the Chinese. Chinese history shows that people will put up with a lot, but, when a certain point is reached, they simultaneously explode into rebellion. That is exactly what happened last week after Asian secret societies mobilized. First, top enforcer and former Chinese President Jiang Zemin died suddenly “after a long illness.” Following that, police and soldiers moved in and started dismantling PCR testing facilities and arresting the white-suited zombie enforcers. The Asian secret societies are also aware the so-called pandemic was a combination of a 5G electromagnetic attack with the release of viruses by Rothschild-controlled laboratories in China. It is no coincidence that Klaus Schwab Rothschild was spotted at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in Washington DC last week.
[Source: Sorcha Faal. RationalWiki says "Sorcha Faal is the alleged author of an ongoing series of "reports" ...whose work is of such quality that even other conspiracy nutters don't think much of it."].
Putin And Dolly Parton Slap Down Satan As West Realizes Russia Will Never Run Out Of Ammunition. An intriguing new Security Council (SC) report circulating in the Kremlin today first noting President Putin signed into law a bill passed unanimously by the Russian Parliament completely banning LGBTQ propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations, gender reassignment and pedophilia on social networks, in the mass media, films and advertisements, says at near the exact same time this bill was signed into law yesterday, ...but joining President Putin to defend Christianity against socialist Western colonial demonic ideology, world-renowned American music legend Dolly Parton performed her hit song “Go to Hell” during a leftist NBC special programme, where she rebuked the Devil on prime-time television, proclaiming “Satan is real” and warning “He is trying to destroy everything good and beautiful”. [And a bunch of stuff about Western colonial bloodlust & Russia wonderfulness]
[Latest from Real Raw News. RRN is 100% fiction, but many Qs believe it. Can't link to it, so here are excerpts.]
Inside Biden’s Billion Dollar, Drunken Gala Dinner [for French President Macron]. Thursday night’s liberal lollapalooza at Tyler Perry Studios’ “White House” was a farrago of drunkenness, paranoia, chicanery, pomposity, and alcohol-fueled rage toward Donald Trump and Elon Musk...Pelosi was tipsy when she arrived at the feast and sauntered to an open bar replete with scintillating bottles of pricey liquor–Clase Azul tequila, 50-year-old Appleton Estate Rum, Macallan Sherry Oak whiskey, and, to top it off, Chateau Margaux grand vin. Chilled decanters of 1959 Dom Perignon sat in ice buckets at every dinner table. As guests donned in tuxedos or ballroom gowns funneled inside the imitation White House, Pelosi lingered at the bar, heartily sampling various liquors while the bartender stared at her in dazed bewilderment...Meanwhile, Pelosi continued indulging in drink and, therefore, losing her inhibitions. At one point in the evening, she made a comment so cringeworthy that those within earshot feigned deafness or simply distanced themselves. Her speech slurred, she said she had “the best and biggest boobs in the House, better even than,” she added with distaste, “AOCs or MTGs.”...Later in the evening a splenetic, irascible Biden was overheard saying that “I need my candy,” after which his personal physician, Dr. Kevin O’Conner, escorted him from the banquet hall to a private room. Biden reappeared 20 minutes afterward, rejuvenated and refreshed, and loquaciously touted his “accomplishments” to rapturous applause. “Candy is Biden’s codeword for Adrenochrome,” our source said. “He was going downhill, so got his shot or infusion, then came back to serenade his sympathetic audience. [As previously reported, Pelosi was arrested after the banquet & hauled off to Gitmo] AG sources told Real Raw News Saturday morning that Pelosi has been charged with multiple counts of treason and seditious conspiracy—coincidentally, perhaps, the very same charges she told the Department of Justice to level against Oath Keeper Stewart Rhodes, [also] The United States Navy Judge Advocate General’s Corps has released the name of a Hollywood producer who was arrested after attending the criminal Biden regime’s banquet last Thursday evening. That person is Eli Roth, an American film director, screenwriter, producer, and actor whose name is synonymous with torture-porn: Roth is best known for directing the film Hostel, a ghoulish fright-fest in which attractive, scantily clad young women lure horny college boys to an industrial warehouse owned by a secret society...According to a military arrest warrant reviewed by RRN, Roth’s snuff flicks weren’t entirely fictional. The document alleges that Roth sought to make his films as realistic as possible; Before principal filming began on Hostel, Cabin Fever, and The Green Inferno, Roth rented property in Bilisht, Albania, and used his underworld connections to hire members of the Albanian mafia to torture and murder people in ways that would eventually appear in the films.
[Source: AMG News which is becoming a rival to RRN. AMG's source is---Sorcha Faal!] The Ark of Gabriel: Unearthing an Ancient Secret Weapon – What Do the Russians, the Pope, and the Patriarch Kirill Have to Do With The Ark of Gabriel?
Not to be confused with the Ark of the Covenant, which houses the two stone slabs of the Ten Commandments, the Ark of Gabriel, which is not mentioned in the Christian Bible, is a mysterious device, a secret weapon that many people are only beginning to learn about. Its legend has been perpetuated by the havoc it has wreaked over the centuries, as well as its potential to be unleashed upon the world. Wild rumours that a fabled device or weapon called the “Ark of Gabriel” has been found under the Masjid al-Haram Mosque – the holiest site in Islam – are sweeping across the darker corners of the internet. Legend tells the Archangel Gabriel – who told the Virgin Mary she would give birth to Jesus and dictated the Koran to the Prophet Muhammed – also entrusted an ark or box of “immense power” to the founder of the Muslim faith. Muhammed was told to bury the ark in a shrine at a “place of worship” – for it to be brought out as the end of the world approaches. Paranoid survivalists believe Saudi Arabia has uncovered the ark during a major construction project at the Grand Mosque – and handed it to the Russians. They claim the Russian military is taking the ark to the Antarctic – possibly to a former Nazi UFO base. ...[An] attempt to remove the ark on September 24 caused a massive “plasma emission” that resulted in more than 4,000 deaths – Sorcha Faal claims. More than 2,000 were indeed killed in Mecca on that date – but the deaths were blamed on a stampede during the Hajj pilgrimage... On hearing the news, Russian president Vladimir Putin reportedly dispatched the naval research vessel Admiral Vladimisky to collect the ark from the Saudi port city of Jeddah – the gateway to Mecca – and take it to the Antarctic. Two Russian battle satellites were launched to protect the Admiral Vladimisky and its precious cargo and a fleet of Russian warships, a salvage tug and oil tanker – carrying out manoeuvres in the Indian Ocean – have been ordered to rendezvous with it.
In other news
[Source: anonymous. Ellipses in original] Electric Cars Can Sterilize And Damage The Unborn?? Oh geez… did anyone do any testing on the electromagnetic fields of electric cars and human health? Well, there’s at least ONE study… yup… ONE. People… DNA is very sensitive and easily affected by EMF. One has to wonder if the push for electric cars, had something to do with depopulation… I wonder about these things… do you? Wanna wonder about something else? If graphene oxide and electric car combination is a recipe for early death!!
[Source: anonymous, who provided no more details] The New Hybrid Humans Can Be Used As Local Wireless Networks – Gates Owns the Patent For Exclusive Rights Over Human Hybrid Bodies!! This Is NOT Science Fiction!!
[Source: crackpot video I didn't watch] Real Reason Elon Musk Bought Twitter!! Elon Musk To Start Brain Chip Trials In Humans!! Chinese WeChat Is The Model!! The idea that he wants to emulate WeChat… which probably has something to do with the hellhole China has become… while people’s brains are hooked up to the grid… talk about the devil’s champion!
[Source: crackpot video I didn't watch] Reptilian News Update! Elon Musk Working With Disguised Aliens! Giants In Statis On Earth!! Buried Upside Down Black Pyramid In Canada Older Than Egyptian Pyramids!! Great Lakes Underground ET Bases!! Magnetic Pole Shift!! "Grindal the reptilian channeled by Jim Charles at the weekly Hucolo Webinar, begins around 25:00 mark, and he covers a wide range of hot and hidden topics."
[This picture has been widely shared as proof that the Army is allied with Q. It actually represents the patch the soldiers in this group wear. But, wait! There's more! It proves JFK Jr. is alive. There are a couple of comments in that Tweet, but this guy really nails it down.]
JFK Jr.: Most Convincing Photograph That He’s Still Alive And Is Q, Is This!! For me this is the most convincing photo proof that JFK Jr. is still alive. Notice a portion of the US military and others not in uniform… there’s the grey haired fella at the bottom of the Q wearing a dark suit… JFK Jr.? This is a photo of JFK Jr. with the Q team? Sure seems like it don’t it. This photo needs to be shared widely… it needs to be debated… it needs widespread presence on social media. Are we all in this together or what? I do believe so. It’s time we got more familiar with those protecting us. The people in this photograph are the masterminds and higher levels of the greatest military intel drop in the history of the world, with the founder and original editor of George Magazine… who knew he would have to go away, to be part of the secret mission to not only save America, but also save humanity.
[Source: Enlightened Contact with Extra Terrestrial Intelligence. Paraphrased.] The eruption of Mauna Loa is due to the Military slapping Pele in the face. (Pele is the goddess of fire & volcanos. In popular culture, she is supposed too be vengeful. In traditional beliefs, volcanic eruptions are for purifying & cleansing.) The government claims those structures on Mauna Loa are observatories, but they are really entrances to deep underground military bases (DUMBS). What's really happening--"[We] are well aware of what goes on in some of those deep underground facilities, things so decadent experiments beyond most people’s ability to comprehend. There are also, 'rumors' they are being destroyed, cleaned up, filled with sea water or lava, or blown up to put an end to the evil operations. Knowing this puts a whole new spin on what is unfolding. For all we know Pele just might be cleaning up all the desecration of sacred lands or a combination of both." Expect UFOs. They always show up around major eruptions.
Short note on Queen Romana. She has been under the weather, but treated herself with roasted garlic. She got better "after a visit from BLUE Light Beings/ Friends on her Temples" and has been photographed "out grocery shopping [in Newfoundland] and showing We The People that there is no food shortage." New convoy member Leona. Posting some hard core antisemitism from her followers, not to mention pro-Putin stuff. Also pics of "our Earth Alliance SSP - Solar Warden Space Fighter Crafts".
You DO Have an Amazing Essay Inside You. Here’s My Step-by-Step Guide to Finding YOUR Amazing Personal Essay (2022 Updates)
Happy Saturday Seniors! You DO have an amazing essay inside you, and here are the steps you can take to drag it out of yourself. (This is an updated post from my post two years ago about the Personal Essay. I don’t post often about the Personal Essay because there are so many others here sharing their valuable resources, and I usually prefer to just respond one-on-one to kids asking about the essay.) So here's the deal: after reading (no exaggeration) thousands of essays over the last several years, I know you have it in you to write a strong, heartfelt, personal, personal essay. So, I’m sharing with you the exact steps I use with my own students to get them to dig down and find their amazing essays inside. It’s there. I promise. Quick note before we get started: If you're interested in joining my Step-by-Step Personal Essay Live Session on Sunday, August 28, be sure to check at the end for details! A little background about me: I was a writing teacher for thirty years before I became a college admissions consultant, and for the last fifteen of those I taught freshman writing at Houston Community College. Much of that time was spent covering and teaching my personal favorite, the Personal Essay. For the last 6.5 years, I’ve been a private college admissions consultant, and when I’m not answering questions here or working with my students, I’m reading posts on college admissions counselor groups, following tons of admissions offices and deans on Twitter, visiting colleges, and going to conferences (and now nearly daily webinars). Here’s what I know: Your idea about some kind of story you tell just isn’t that important. Often, the best essays I read come from the most mundane ideas. So many of you are focused on finding the magical idea that you’re letting the point of the essay escape you. There is no magic formula. There is no perfect idea. Because you have the focus of the essay right there. With you. It’s inside you because that’s what it should be about: inside you. I mean, we the readers, want to get to know the narrator version of your life, not the pretty scenery version where we only see what the character is doing. We need to know what’s happening inside your head, and most importantly, we need your values. We need your beliefs. So, ok then, what’s the frickin point of the personal essay? Here’s how I see it and what I’ve learned over many years and lots of time investigating and sleuthing on multiple college admissions websites, years of college admissions conference attending, and lots of Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook following. Despite what you think and what you’ve been told, I’ve come to believe (strongly!) that the point of the personal essay is not to STAND OUT, but to STICK WITH. You want the reader to fight for you in committee, and they will want to fight for you in committee if you build a connection with them. Here's a quote straight from @UVADeanJ on Twitter: “I see so many students worrying about finding a unique college application essay that will ‘set them apart” right now. Application essay topics don’t have to be unique! I don’t mind if students write about something super popular, whether it’s an activity, academic interest, book, song… I just want them to give a little insight into who they are.” How do you build that connection? You build a connection with your reader by building bridges instead of walls. Walls can be an extended metaphor that has gone too far, an essay that feels like it’s trying too hard, stilted formal language, thesaurus words (please don’t sound like you’ve swallowed a thesaurus -- choking isn’t a good look), paragraphs that aren’t about inside you at all, but that are about another person, your ECs, or too much description. When I feel like someone is writing an essay that has been specifically written with the intent of impressing me – that builds a wall. Bridges let me in. Bridges are human connections. Bridges show vulnerability and problem-solving. Bridges aren’t afraid to show failure and learning from that failure. Think about the bridges and walls you have with your friends. What connects you with your friends with whom you have deeper relationships? What puts up a wall with your more shallow and surface friends? How do you build the bridges? Let’s get to it! These are the exact steps I use with my students. It works. Time tested. Student tested.
STEP ONE: AVOID ACCEPTED ESSAYS LIKE HOT LAVA
If you fill your brain with "essays that work," you get stuck inside your head about what a personal essay should look like. You can become limited in your idea of what a college essay is. Honestly, when I'm reading essays, the essays that I feel need the most work are from kids who have tried to emulate what they think an essay should be, so they get focused on the essay itself rather than sharing who they are and what's important to them. And, moreover, you really don't know if someone's essay helped their app or they got into a school in spite of their essays. Example: My daughter is an amazing writer, won tons of national and state awards for writing in high school. I never worried about or gave her college essays a second thought -- not that it would have mattered if I did because she wouldn't let me near her applications anyway, but that's outside the point of this story. She was accepted to every school she applied to with the exception of Princeton, and she attended Harvard. I think we all just assumed her personal essay helped her with admissions because she wasn't the strongest student in her school when it came to doing homework or daily assignments. But when she used the FERPA rule to review her application later during her sophomore year, she discovered that she'd been admitted despite the fact that they hated her essay. They called it "over-blown" "full of itself" and "way too self-important." That's just one example, but from many of the "essays that worked" that I've seen online, I've found a similar vein. So, you -- or the writer of that essay have no idea if that essay actually helped or hurt them in admissions -- even if they were admitted. I go into more detail about this in the essay chapter in my book with the help of u/BlueLightSpcl (one of our amazing former mods on A2C) and his wise words. I've linked that chapter below in resources. Also, you can find words from u/Admissions_Daughter there. You might be able to find her advice archived here on Reddit somewhere too. She's not active anymore, but she has some awesome posts based on her years of college essay coaching -- starting after she graduated and read her FERPA! The only exceptions I'd consider to this step are reading essays from college admissions websites (like Johns Hopkins, for example) where they profile what they liked! And even then, I still don't fully advise it because I want you focused on your own thoughts and feelings and values, and I don't want you to be stymied by what you think your essay should look like. If you’d like to read some essays from colleges and also read what other folks in admissions say about reading “essays that worked,” here’s a link. Two years ago, I loved this so comment about reading “Essays that Work” from u/Vergilx217 so much that I wanted to add it here to make sure y’all all got to see it: "When you have no reference, that accepted essay becomes a reference. You will sound insincere. Furthermore, you create a mental guideline on how a "good" essay is and it severely stunts how much you can express yourself, and that makes your essay that much even more impersonal. It would be like forcing Django Reinhardt to learn the piano instead of the guitar, because you've seen so many famous pianists and not so many guitarists then."
STEP TWO: WRITE FOR FUN
Put aside the pressure of the essays for a day or two and just write and then keep writing. Jot down a daily journal. Jot down your thoughts about the pandemic. Jot down your gratitudes. Don’t worry about grammar or trying to write in any certain way about any certain topic. Just get comfortable putting words on a piece of paper -- or screen. Hell, write to us here on A2C every day for a week so you can get comfortable with your voice. You can do this while writing your personal essay.
Go to www.thisibelieve.org and read essays. There are thousands of real deal personal essays there. Read at least three of them and absorb them. You can also listen to them, which can be fun because you can take the essays with you on a walk! Why am I ok with "this I believe" essays and not "essays that worked"? Great question. It's because “this I believe essays” aren't written with the intent to try to impress someone, but they are written (the good ones anyway) to express innermost values. Also, there are literally thousands of them, so you can play for hours listening and digging in and learning about what a personal essay sounds like that goes in deep and really personal. Here’s a link to some of my favorites.
STEP FOUR: I LOVE… I VALUE… I BELIEVE... ONE MINUTE EXERCISE
Set a one-minute timer on your phone and list out loud things you love, then list things you value, then list things you believe. Do it with a friend or do it on your own. It doesn’t matter. It’s a good warm-up. You can do this on different days or all one day. You can tell me some in the comments below if you like! (Idea piggy-backed from College Essay Guy)
STEP FIVE: GO WITHIN
Here’s the deal about the personal essay. It has to be just that — super, incredibly, deeply personal. The essay needs to be about Inner You — the you they can’t get to know anywhere else in your application. So, you have to peel off your onion layers, find your inner Shrek, dig in super deep, and get to know yourself as you’ve never done before. What is the essence of you-ness you want the readers to know about you? It’s not easy. Ask yourself (and write down these answers) some really personal questions like: What do I believe? What do I think? What do I value? What keeps me up at night? What do I get excited about? What comforts me? What worries me? What’s important to me? Who are my superheroes? What’s my superpower? What would my superpower be if I could have any superpower? What’s my secret sauce? What reminds me of home? Just play with these. And learn a lot. Become the expert on you because you are really the only person who can be the expert on you. Here are some more questions to ask yourself as you’re going through this process. After you’ve answered them, look for themes that tell you about yourself. Then, you’ll be ready to teach the lesson about who you are and what you believe and value to the application readers. The topic is you. Any vehicle (idea or story) that gets across the message of what’s important to you can work. Start with the message you want to share about who you are. Then find ways to demonstrate that. This doesn’t have to be — and, (in my opinion) — shouldn’t be, a complete narrative. I think the essays need to be more reflection and analysis than story. Those are the essays that stick with me after reading a few thousand of them. I’m not saying don’t use a story. Use one or two if that’s what feels right for you. Just remember the story is only the vehicle for getting the message of who you are across the page. I like to see more commentary and less narrative, so for me the Show, not Tell isn’t really that effective. I prefer show and tell — like kindergarten. I don’t want a rundown of your activities — if something is discussed elsewhere in your application, to me, you don’t want to waste the valuable space of the personal essay. In essence, you can think of it like this: More expressing, Less Impressing.
STEP SIX: ANALYZE THE PERSONAL ESSAY PROMPTS
This is a step I've recently added, but I think it's super important. While I don't feel that you have to pick one of the prompts, because the topic is YOU no matter what, I do think it's important to take some time to internalize what they are asking of you. You can find the prompts here. I encourage you to take time to read them all and focus on these words: background, identity, meaningful, lessons, challenge, obstacles, setback, failure, learn, experience, reflect, questioned, challenged, belief, idea, thinking, problem, solved, challenge, personal importance, significance to you, solution, personal growth, understanding of yourself, engaging. Maybe highlight them in pretty colors and absorb them as you are in this thinking phase. All of these questions are asking you to dig deep and share what you've learned from your experiences. They want to see a person who's ready to learn from mistakes and obstacles and who knows they can handle bumps in the road because they have.
STEP SEVEN: TAKE A WALK OR LONG SHOWER
Give those thoughts some time. Let these thoughts simmer. Take long walks and showers. Sit in silence. Give your brain a break from applications and all the stuff we spend so much time filling them with. Turn off ALLLLLL the screens. You’ve asked yourself some tough questions; now you have to give your brain some time to just let the thoughts soak. Live with these thoughts and questions for a few days and just hang out with them. Maybe jot down a note or two as you think of them, but it’s important to spend some time doing nothing at all to let your brain deal with your thoughts and questions. For many of you, this is the first time in your lives you’ve grappled with some of these big questions about life.
STEP EIGHT: FUN WITH WRITING AND QUESTIONS
This is fun: Pick three or four of the questions above and play around with them on www.themostdangerouswritingapp.com. I like the superhero one, the what do I believe, and special sauce, but you pick the ones you like most. Give yourself three or five minutes only to write as much as you can. The cool thing about the most dangerous writing app is that if you stop, you lose what you write, so be careful. I’ve had many many students end up using what they wrote in those few minutes as the catalyst or largest part of their essay. Copy and paste those paragraphs to a google doc so you can use them.
STEP NINE: WRITE A SHITTY DRAFT
Basically, this: "Bad writing precedes good writing. This is an infallible rule, so don't waste time trying to avoid bad writing. That just slows down the process. Anything committed to paper can be changed. The idea is to start, and then go from there." ~ Janet Hulstrand. So, yeah. Get going on that shitty draft -- especially if you're experiencing overanalysis paralysis, just feel stuck, or feel like you suck at writing. I borrowed this idea from one of our subreddit parents who’d borrowed it from Anne Lamott. Start with writing the shittiest most terrible thing you can do. Just write down all your thoughts and words. Throw away grammar, and trying to make sense of it all. Push yourself to write some total crap. Just keep going until it's the worst most horrible pile of words on a page you've seen. Here's what she says "make it trite, make it stupid, make it arrogant, make it profane." Get all that crappy stuff out of your head and write it down. Then put it away. Just leave it for a day or two and then I love this: She suggests doing a dramatic reading of it. How fun is that? Read what Anne Lamotte says about Shitty First Drafts here.
STEP TEN: WRITE YOUR ESSAY
Take what you've written on tmdwa and in your shitty first draft and use that to get yourself going. Write your essay. Focus on who you are — not what you do. Like I said earlier, your job is to build a connection with your reader. You build a connection by allowing someone in and being vulnerable. So take what you learned about yourself and share that knowledge. Essay readers in admissions offices will read your essays quickly, so with limited time to get the essence of who you are across a sheet of paper (or computer screen), clarity and focus on INNER you are essential from the get-go. You have to remember that they will give your essay about 5 minutes. Maybe 10. You don't have a lot of time to be too nuanced. Lack of clarity, too many details about anything other than you, and language that is more complicated than necessary all build barriers (walls) between you and the reader, something you really don’t want. Remember, you want bridges. While it’s certainly not the only way to write a personal essay, and I don’t suggest that you have to do it this way, the easiest way to move forward might be to use a “This I Believe” type format like those essays you read in www.thisibelieve.org. So if you’re looking for an easy way to move forward, focus on one belief that you thought of and then write about it. If you can include the words I believe, I think, I value, I wonder, I know, and they fit well in your essay then you know that it’s personal. (Helpful Hints: 1. Remember to use your voice. This essay should “sound” like you and be more conversational. It’s not an English 5 paragraph essay. More like talking to an older cousin, you really like and respect. 2. I also like to suggest throwing in an “I mean” and a “you know” -- if those can flow in your essay, then you know it’s conversational and relaxed.) Suggestion: If staring at a blank screen stresses you out, record your thoughts by talking into your recorder on your phone. That’s a great idea for those of you who like to write while you walk (like me). Then just write it all down and give it some structure if you ramble!
STEP ELEVEN: THE THUMB TEST
If someone covered up your name with a thumb or they found your essay on the floor in the middle of your high school hallway with no name on it, would your mom or your best friend know it was yours? If not, keep working. That essay needs to sound like you with your voice, your tone, and your experiences.
STEP TWELVE: EDIT
Edit the shit out of your essay. Make sure you read it on your computer screen, read it on paper, and read it out loud, and have at least one other person you trust look it over. Here's one of my Medium posts that goes over how to edit essays with lots more detail -- you should read it when it’s edit time. Editing is far more than working on grammar, although grammar is important. Editing can be about totally restructuring the essay -- and that can be good. When I’m reviewing essays, I look for bumps. Places where when I’m reading I just don’t feel the flow. It’s usually from too much flowery language or long-drawn-out metaphors or funky word choices, so read out loud and look for those bumps! Just make sure you are in charge of all edits. If you're still finding your essay is toooooo loooong, try this Cutting to the Bone Exercise! And, now pay attention here -- If you get someone else to review your essay, don’t let them just randomly make edits and revisions. Make sure they suggest edits -- and YOU agree with them and ok them. I'll be hosting a live editing workshop in September so stay tuned for info about that!
STEP THIRTEEN: BREATHE
Pat yourself on the back, sit back, and smile. (and then go back and edit it again!!)
LOOK, IT’S HARD
You CAN do this. It’s hard, but so important for your future, your college admissions, for sure, but it’s also important just for future you to take the time to learn to write clearly and dig in and figure out what’s important about the essence of who you are. **A NOTE** You're going to hear lots of different advice about all sorts of things when it comes to college admissions, and especially about the essay. My advice to you is to take it all in and absorb what does work and doesn't work for you. I don't think there's one right or wrong way to end up with a killer essay that gets to the point of you.
Here’s a link to the essay chapter of my book, Hey AdmissionsMom: Real Talk from Reddit: In it, you'll find lots of advice from me and others from the ApplyingToCollege community from 2016-2018.
The personal essay is about INNER YOU. Find your Inner Shrek. Build bridges, not walls. You do have an amazing essay inside you. I promise.
Live-Streamed Personal Essay Work Session
💜And finally, for those of you who made it all the way to the end of this post, I’m inviting you to a FREE One-Hour Personal Essay Work Session (Livestreamed on YouTube and Twitch, Recorded on YouTube) for A2C and Instagram Family – Sunday, August 28 at ELEVEN AM Central Standard Time. Here's what it is: I will walk you through all the steps I present here in the same way I do with my private students. NOTE: This work session won’t include essay review or editing (stay tuned for that!), so it’s more for those of you who either aren’t completely happy or comfortable with your current essay or those of you who are ready to get started. Details Again: BadAss College Apps LiveStream: Step-by-Step Personal Essay Work Session with AdmissionsMom Sunday, August 28, 2022 11 AM Central Standard Time Recorded on YouTube YouTube, Twitch You don’t have to sign up ahead of time to attend, but if you email me at [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) before August 28, I’ll share the docs you’ll need ahead of time!
Forex etoro review / Scott barkley Forex trading; Bmf Forex; Distressed debt investing valuation allowance / Trading binary options with candlesticks trading; Car2go investing money ; OzForex australia address post / Opteck binary option trading; Shares in investment; Coins Forex chennai flood; Managed investment trust australia; The binary option reviews; The fx binary option scalper / Binary ... AshÃ¡ninka medicinal plants: a case study from the native community of Bajo Quimiriki, JunÃn, Peru. PubMed Central. 2010-01-01. Background The AshÃ¡ninka Native Community Bajo Quimiriki, District Pichanaki, JunÃn, Peru, is located only 4 km from a larger urban area and is dissected by a major road. Therefore the loss of traditional knowledge is a main concern of the local headman and ... If you skipped or need to review the four previous Radioactivity Related Lessons, find them in the right-hand sidebar. Photographs can often be dated based on the clothing the subjects are wearing. When you are older, it will be a lot of fun to look back at your childhood images and think, Wow, I really wore that! Unfortunately, objects in creation are a lot harder to date. Have you ever seen ... Was performed a review of medical records of patients undergoing hepatectomy between 2000 and 2014 for the treatment of HCC. They were divided into groups according to the cause of liver disease, followed by overall and disease-free survival analysis for comparison. There was no statistically significant difference in the outcomes of the groups of patients divided according to the etiology of ... Objective English By Hari Mohan Prasad Pdf Free; Hello Friends, Today we'r sharing the most sought after book i.e English By Hari Mohan Prasad. Hope you like it, if you do pleas. Forex trading coaches review softball / Fidmak investment limited florida; MT4 level stop / Indicator yang bagus untuk Forex peace; Binary trading script; Emirates stars investment ltd; Daily Forex pivot point; Red green candle for binary options / Damian powell gfi Forex watch; Forex live trading room uk weather ; Girl from the north country dylan cash download Forex / Leap; Macbook; Binary ...
Wow...youre Hired! Review (Top 2014 system Review)
Forex Mentor Pro program by Dean Saunders login: http://tinyurl.com/ForexMentorProMembersAreaLogin Forex Mentor Pro - #1 Forex Education Site On The Net! for... Forex Mentor Pro by Dean Saunders and Mark Walton thoughtelevator. Loading... Unsubscribe from thoughtelevator? Cancel Unsubscribe. Working... Subscribe Subscribed Unsubscribe 16. Loading ... http//www.mentorforex.com Review of the forex mentor pro system dean saunders and lmt forex http://tinyurl.com/10minfx Brilliant breakout and swing system by Dean Saunders that has made lots of his trading customers huge amounts of profit money. Don... LMT Forex Formula is the Wow...youre Hired! PDF Link newest Forex software from Dean Saunders. Why do textiles plus craft have to fight for recognition for the Wow...youre Hired! PDF Link ... This 10 Minute Forex Wealth Builder review takes a close look at the system developed by Dean Saunders. Visite http://727314p56pll5q6w86pllwela3.hop.clickbank.net/ for more informations on this forex system opportunity presented by Dean Saunders from 10 minute ...