1. The first week of 2019.

“A lot of our interest in fancy cars, jobs and houses has nothing to do with materialism. It has to do with a hunger for the respect and esteem that is only available in our societies through the acquisition of material goods. It isn’t the goods themselves we seek, it is the love we stand to gain through our possession of them.”
Alain de Botton

1. Your scribe has no idea what the five speakers spoke about because he wasn’t paying attention. Yes, I was there at Speakers’ Corner, but Mr B asked me to sort the logistics for another Carlos Castaneda’s Power of the Night!

If you remember (and you would remember if you were one of the lucky ones) in 2017 Mr B took us to a national park and at midnight blindfolded us. He then had us run full speed into the pitch-black forest. By harnessing the Power of the Night we would instinctively know where to place our feet and when to hurdle obstacles. Although that excursion was not 100% successful, it was character building. And Mr B says he has learnt from his mistake and this time he will bring with him a torch.

Click here to read a description of that exciting excursion in which we harnessed the Power of the Night.

To discover he is planning another excursion is exciting!

How was he prompted to plan another? Apparently there is new a horror film called ‘The Birdbox Challenge’. The characters have to go about their lives blindfolded to avoid vicious supernatural entities. It’s one scary film and it prompted Mr B to generously offer us his services again. He thinks we should all be skilled at harnessing the Power of the Night.

Sign up when you see him. A gold coin donation will be accepted.

2. One brief talk did catch your scribe’s ear. It was about the famous ‘ice man’, Wim Hof, and it was about the not-so famous (but just as impressive) Mighty Apollo. Wim Hoff’s breathing techniques allow him to withstand freezing cold. One of his many feats, for example, is to stay immersed in ice for nearly two hours. Also, he once ran 42kms in five hours, in just shoes and shorts, when the temperature was minus 20 degrees Celsius! It’s all about the breathing, he says.

The Mighty Apollo (Paul Anderson, but not the American weightlifter Paul Anderson) lived in Melbourne and was a man of strength. When he was fifteen he carried a horse up a 32 foot (6km) ladder. In 1950 he towed a semi-trailer carrying two elephants and fifty people (33.5 tons) up the Russell Street hill from Flinders Street to Collins Street, with his teeth. In 1955 he took the weight of an 8.5 ton elephant on a platform on his chest. In 1957 he defeated 60 men in a tug-of-war. Etc. It’s all about the breathing, he would say.

So, both men claimed that their breathing technique allowed them to achieve those extraordinary feats. The lesson is folks: keep breathing.



3. In our Unusual Critter Series we present to you the Satanic Leaf-Tailed Gecko from Madagascar. It could appear in our Facebook Pageand you would never notice it.