Hey, how’s it going? Happy Halloween 🎃! October was a pretty productive month for me, as I finally had my annual physical appointment and restarted my meditation routine. It’s been nice to set time aside to just sit still to let thoughts flow through like a rushing stream, while actively practicing calm, focus, and kindness.
Here are the things I did this month:
- I ran 42.45 miles (average 4.25 miles per run), down from 44.32 from September
- I meditated 24 days in October, with an average time of 21 minutes per session
- As we approach winter, I’m winding down my intermittent fasting and began having overnight oats for breakfast again. Here’s the base recipe I use before adding different toppings and flavors.
- Lunch with the gang: Becky found this great park around Ocean Ave, so we met up for a quick lunch. With everyone living all around the bay with their own lives to manage, it’s getting increasingly difficult to get together these days. But when we do, it always good.
- Lunch with coworkers: I don’t normally put work stuff here but our team recently launched a product that took more than a year to scope & build, so we decided to meet up for lunch and celebrated the launch like actual human beings.
Here are the things I enjoyed and would recommend this month:
(Note: I try to find and recommend more under-the-radar things, since we all know Squid Game basically took over October.)
- 📺 TV: The Leftovers (HBO Max) — I once jokingly refer this show as “Depression in a TV show”, but apparently that was only true in the first season. From the co-creator of Lost, The Leftovers offers more questions than answers in this 26-episode series. How would you react in the scenario where 2% of the world’s population suddenly vanished one day without any reason? Would you hope for your loved ones to return, and for how long? Would you grieve for their loss, or how do you make peace with it? Would you be afraid it’ll happen again? And how would you apply meaning to its occurrence — with rationale, religion, psychology, or something else? This series is just so beautiful and perfect for an overthinker like myself.
- 🎤 Podcast: Welcome to Your Fantasy (Apple Podcasts) — This 9-episode series detailed the abrupt rise and unbelievable fall of the Chippendales brand of the 1980s. Though it’s still around today, their ubiquitous fame in the 80s was filled with jealousy, corruption, and sociopathic murder attempts that more extra than the cheesy Chippendale dance routine you may have in your head. Speaking of, check out the podcast’s IG account (you’re welcome).
- 📗 Book: The Book of Lost Names by Kristin Harmel (Goodreads) — While some of the characters and plot lines didn’t hook me right from the start (or maybe I’m just that jaded?), this book transported me into the middle of WWII in a world unknown to me. Away from the battlefields where most WWII books and movies take place, it was interesting to experience the danger of living a hidden life of resistance — all while showcasing the value of “doing what you can” when hope seemed anything but a fantasy. In a way, this book is quite relatable to today when authoritative rule and military coup is increasingly common around the world.
- 🎧 Music: Optimist by Finneas (Apple Music) — While Billie Elish may be the pop star of today, I’ve always been more intrigued by her lower-key, yet equally talented brother Finneas. His songs in this debut album have a good balance between folk, pop, and rock, while still sharing quite a bit of similarities to Billie. Let’s hope he doesn’t turn into another Ed Sheeran in a few years.
- 🎬 Movie: Wolfwalkers (Apple TV+) — The storybook-like art is so unique and far from the Disney style that we all grew up with. Apparently this movie is the studio’s third part of a “Irish Folklore Trilogy”, after Secret of Kells and Song of the Sea. And fun fact — apparently the villain of this story is based on a real person, considered by some as a hero in English history.
My next book will be Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston (Goodreads), recommended by my friend Jessica. (Please reply and LMK if you have any recommendations for me! Especially books since I’m currently trying to read more fiction.)
- After years of contemplating, my friend Eugene finally signed up for AIDS Lifecycle and will be riding 545 miles from San Francisco to Los Angeles over 8 days in 2022. As a friend, he’s always been there for me to celebrate my highs while support me during my lows. You can read up on his training journey here and please consider donating if you can.
(Do you have something to share as well? Are you working on a project, fundraising, selling / giving things away, or otherwise just have something you want more people to know about? Please reply and LMK — would love to help spread the word. We’re all good people here :D)
And that’s about it for the month of October! I hope it’s interesting for you as it was nice for me to recap for the month. How are you doing? With Covid getting better (at least here in the US), do you have any Thanksgiving or holiday plans this year? Let me know what you’ve been up to please — it seriously makes my day 🙂
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