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Sep 22, 2021
Happy Wednesday! I have been obsessing over minimalism lately, but not the kind that asks whether a t-shirt sparks joy. Today, meet a minimalist rising star for whom the concept is about rethinking the way we look at the world. Check out the latest battles for gender equality: led by octopuses, hummingbirds and frogs. And if the fight for what’s right leaves you with some extra energy to burn, why not try a new sport? We have some great suggestions. Don’t forget to see if you won last week’s caption contest!
U.S. President Joe Biden told the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday that his administration will give $11 billion in aid annually to developing nations to help them face climate emergencies. A few hours later, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that the country plans to stop building coal plants abroad, in a bid to minimize its contribution to global warming. Meanwhile, the International Energy Agency has urged Russia to increase its supply of gas to Europe, to ensure adequate stock levels ahead of winter. (Sources: Guardian, WSJ, Bloomberg)
2 - UN-believable Request
The Taliban have named their Doha-based spokesman, Suhail Shaheen, as Afghanistan’s U.N. ambassador and have requested to be allowed to speak at the global body’s annual summit, which is currently underway. Meanwhile, Portugal has given asylum to the Afghanistan women’s soccer team, with the Taliban banning female sports since it grabbed power last month. Should the Taliban get a seat at the U.N.? Vote here or on Twitter. (Sources: Reuters, AP)
3 - ‘Cool Dictator’
That’s what El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele has called himself in response to the U.S. State Department listing the Central American country’s Supreme Court justices as “undemocratic and corrupt.” The judges had voted to allow Bukele to seek reelection in violation of the constitution. Meanwhile, Sudan Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok said forces loyal to the country’s former dictator, Omar al-Bashir, were behind a failed coup attempt on Tuesday. (Sources: AP, BBC)
4 - Angry Earth
Australians woke up to a rare magnitude 5.9 earthquake near Melbourne that damaged buildings but is so far not known to have caused serious injuries. Over in Spain’s Canary Islands, meanwhile, an erupting volcano has forced the evacuation of an entire village that was in the path of lava moving toward the sea. (Sources: SBS News, BBC)
5 - Jobless Nigeria
Nearly 20% of workers in Nigeria have lost their jobs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new official statistics. That makes the most populous nation in Africa one of the most severely affected by the global economic downturn. (Source: Al Jazeera, Reuters)
Crypto has had quite a year. Decade, really. And that has everyone from individuals to institutional investors adding cryptocurrencies to their portfolios. The downside, however, to crypto trading is that paying taxes on crypto investments is anything but straightforward. There’s good news, though. By investing tax-advantaged retirement funds in crypto, you can avoid the hassle of reporting each and every transaction. What’s more, by investing with a Roth IRA, so long as you wait until at least 59-½ to begin taking distributions and have had an account for at least five years, you’ll never pay taxes on your gains. That’s huge. However, whether you invest in crypto with a traditional or Roth IRA, there are real advantages. That’s why Alto created the CryptoIRA. Offering $10 investment minimums, 80+ cryptocurrencies, and integration with Coinbase, the Alto CryptoIRA® makes investing in crypto simple. Discover the power of tax-advantaged crypto investing today.
Way before Marie Kondo got us to talk to our clothes, this dynamic duo was already teaching the world about the wonders of buying less. Over the past decade, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus hand-held millions of people through the road of detachment, prioritizing relationships over things. Their tips are not just for the rich. These guys grew up in families that struggled for cash.
2 - Lina María Pinzón
Struggling to clean your home (and life) by yourself? Worry not, there’s an app for that. Or an army of experts that is. This Colombian lawyer found her passion (and a business opportunity) when she learned the Japanese way of folding clothes. Today, for around $20 an hour, she helps families in Colombia’s Bogotá select what’s hot and what’s not among their belongings. Tempted? We are.
3 - Kyle Chayka
Ok, I have chucked away all those trouser socks I never use. Am I a minimalist? Not so fast, says this journalist and art critic. A minimalist himself, he says the movement has lost some of its meaning recently (think about the privilege of clutter) and questions the idea of its one-size-fits all Western approach. Instead, he says minimalism is all about the way each of us sees the world and enjoys our relationships.
The natural world is having its very own #MeToo moment.
These uber smart creatures know how to use their eight arms to stop sleazy males right in their tracks: by throwing shells at them. Scientists at the University of Sydney made the amazing discovery while filming dens of the animals interacting with each other. In one case, they saw one female throwing pieces of shell and rock 10 times toward a male who was trying to mate with her, until he gave up. Go girl!
2 - Camouflaging Hummingbirds
If you can’t beat them, join them, right? Tired of being harassed, catcalled and even pecked by the bright-colored males, some female hummingbirds have developed to change the tone of their usually duller feathers to imitate that of the males, confusing them and distracting them away. The transformation is not easy, though, with only a fifth of females achieving it.
3 - Tuned-Out Frogs
Frogs are all noisy, but when the males are looking for a date, they are so loud (think rock concert) that smart females come equipped with a tool to literally tune them out when they are not interested. Their lungs are capable of muffling the croaks made by species of frogs other than their own, almost like noise-canceling headphones, allowing them to only focus on the sounds of males they might actually consider mating with.
‘Foreign’ Sports You Didn’t Know
Why stick to the sports you’ve played all your life. Here are three others you should try.
First invented as a way to keep cricket players fit between seasons, Australia’s most popular sport is a mix of American football, soccer and rugby. It is played on a grass pitch and players have to score points by ensuring the oval-shaped ball flies between two sets of giant vertical poles on the opposite side of the field. Players are allowed to kick, punch or run with the ball, while bouncing it every 16 yards. Watch out for those really high jumps!
2 - Padel
If anything says 1990s in Argentina, it’s padel. A tennis-squash hybrid, this sport is played in small, enclosed courts with wooden paddles and a slightly deflated tennis ball, which can ricochet off the side and back walls, rebounding back into play and giving each match some crazy levels of adrenaline. Moving beyond the South American country, this sport is now one of the world’s fastest-growing.
If the Japanese have Sumo, the Senegalese have Laamb, a centuries-old form of wrestling that is more popular in the West African nation than also-loved soccer. It has its roots in harvest festivals, when villages used to compete against each other, pay respects to leaders, perform initiation ceremonies and men showed off to potential brides. Today the sport’s arenas are still packed with pretty spectacular crowds and tons of energy.
Billionaire, co-founder of LinkedIn, partner at Greylock and host of the Masters of Scale podcast Reid Hoffman joins Carlos for an eye-opening discussion that every aspiring entrepreneur needs to watch. Hear Hoffman on the importance of redefining the meaning of mistakes and why the future of tech lies in a marriage of software and biology.
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