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The best of what I’m reading, watching, and exploring (April 2022)

Posted in the following categories: Motivation

From time to time, instead of my usual email with one big idea you can read in 3 minutes or less, I share with you the best of what I’m reading, watching, and exploring. Enjoy!

Books

Move, Connect, Play: The Art and Science of AcroYoga by Jason Nemer. I first met Jason at a small New Year’s Eve party in Park City. Jason walked up to me and said, “Hey, I’m Jason. Wanna fly?” I asked, “What kind of flight do you have in mind?” And he replied, “The AcroYoga kind.”

I had heard of AcroYoga before—and knew it was a combination of acrobatics and yoga—but had never experienced it in person. It turns out Jason is the co-founder of AcroYoga, so I couldn’t think of a better pilot for my debut flight. Next thing I knew, Jason was lifting me up with his legs and flying me through the air (If you want to see AcroYoga in action, check out this video of Jason flying Tim Ferriss).

That 5-minute flight is all it took for me to get hooked on AcroYoga—and for Jason and me to become fast friends. I’m thrilled he published his debut book this week, teaching people the art and science of AcroYoga. I enjoyed the book as a guide—not just to AcroYoga—but to the importance of movement, connection, and play in living a better life.

The Overstory by Richard Powers. This novel forever changed the way that I’ll look at trees. It reads like two-books-in-one: The first-third of the book is a collection of short stories that introduces nine characters. In the remaining three-fourths of the book, Powers draws the stories together, with trees serving as the connective tissue. It’s a slow burn—sometimes really, really slow—but it’s a gorgeous one.

The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz. This was an unputdownable psychological thriller—a novel about writing a novel—that I highly recommend. My one complaint: I saw the big twist coming early on—not because I’m good at detecting twists, but because the author dropped one too many hints. (h/t Jeremy Anderberg for the recommendation).

Films

I say very little about the plot of the films that follow—in large part because I don’t want to ruin the fun. I refuse to watch trailers—or even read film descriptions—because I want to be surprised from minute one.

The Worst Person in the World. (Amazon Prime | Apple TV) This was my favorite among the Oscar nominees for best foreign film this year. This review is spot on: “Makes me grateful and hopeful and terrified and excited about every decision, every meeting, every kiss that’s turned into a memory that’s turned into the best feeling in the world, however fleeting, even when you know there’s an end and a sadness and a loneliness and a sharp pang of quiet to follow soon after.”

Adam Project. (Netflix) I’m a sucker for anything related to time travel. This was a really entertaining ride, with Ryan Reynolds and Zoe Saldaña at their best.

Predestination. (Apple TV) Apparently, I was on a time-travel kick this past month. This one was another entertaining and mind-bending ride about the life of a temporal agent sent through time to stop a criminal.

Licorice Pizza. (Amazon Prime | Apple TV) Coming-of-age movies usually miss the mark. This one knocks it out of the park. Beautifully written and acted—a love letter to 1970s California.

Misc

Prima. I’ve experimented with numerous CBD products over the years and this is the best that I’ve tried so far. My favorite product is The Daily (I found that I need 2 capsules/day to notice the effects). I first heard about the company on my wife Kathy’s podcast, Purpose and Profit, in an episode where she interviewed the company’s Founder and Co-CEO, Christopher Gavigan.

Prima offered 15% off for the readers of this newsletter with the coupon code VAROL15. This is *not* an affiliate link, and I don’t take a dime from any purchase you make. I just love their products.

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