4: experiment [GROW]

What did you do in 2012 that you had never done before? Will you do it again?

Last week, V asked me: “What have you done lately that you haven’t ever done before?” And I said: “Read a book on economics.” He insisted that reading does not count, and while I admit that reading is within my comfort zone, reading non-fiction and non-fiction in areas like finance and science is not. And I have done a lot of that this year.

What helped me get going was non-fiction like Beautiful Thing last year and Behind the Beautiful Forevers, and A Free Man this year. I realised non-fiction wasn’t as dry as I had assumed. I then dabbled in autobiography and books on the art world, which are more in my comfort zone. Here, I was prompted by the popular books section in the library which stacks a range of genres closer together. I then spotted one on the financial crisis, The Big Short by Michael Lewis, and decided to give it a go. I highly recommend this one to anyone thinking about reading finance-related non-fiction or who wants to understand what the hell went down that caused financial markets to unravel in 2008. It is so simply, narratively and humourously told, with so much colour and personality you quite forget this is high finance we are talking about.  (I went on to read his next book Boomerang, and that is great fun too) From there, I quite confidently picked up one on the Obama team’s handling of the economic recession and after that, I realised that if there was a big economic topic I was curious about, why not read about it? And although one book cannot give a rounded perspective, I feel like I have more perspective on these issues than many people who get their information from mass media.

The latest one I’m reading, Poor Economics, is more purely academic (it has graphs!) than anything I have read before but it is a great read and I recommend it to anyone who is interested in issues of poverty. It pretty much answers most of the big questions and stereotypes surrounding the poor and their capacity to improve their lives. I will do a separate post on it later.

Would I do it again?

I am doing it again. I want to read more psychology related stuff now.

What else have I done this year that I haven’t before?

  1. This week, I put out my hands and caught Benji’s puke before it hit his clothes. And then put them out again as the next hurl came.
  2. Peed my pants while running. My pelvic floor is shot. Maybe I did get back to exercise too soon. Oh well, I’m taking it easy now, rest assured.
  3. Breastfed while some skin on my right nipple was actually hanging off. Removed the skin and continued.
  4. Okay, it’s not all blood and gore. I went to Delhi. It was lovely.