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World Domination Release Schedule

Due to the upcoming manifesto launch on Tuesday, my publication schedule will be a bit different this week. Over the weekend I’ll be sending a short preview of the world domination report to everyone who is on my email newsletter list. If you’d like the preview, just put your name down if you haven’t done…

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How To Run 26.2 Miles on the Open Sea

Hi everyone… I had a bit of an adventure last week. My parents and little sister came to visit in Seattle, and we took a 7-night cruise to Alaska. A few years ago the ship we were on caught on fire during a Caribbean cruise, but nothing exciting like that happened on our trip. There…

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The United States of Arabia

I arrived in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after trekking through Jordan and Israel. Flying on Gulf Air, I stopped off in Bahrain for six hours, where I persuaded the immigration guy to let me into the country for a while even though I was in transit. Total cost: $10 for a one-day visa. Six…

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Lessons Learned in My First 90 Days of Writing

I realized recently that it’s been about 90 days since I started this web site and committed to the publishing schedule of three essays per week. I thought it would be good to summarize what I’ve learned, including the mistakes I’ve made as well as the things I’ve done right. Even if you’re not a…

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You Are Incredibly Rich

If you’re reading this essay, I have some good news for you today: the odds are that you are very well-off in the financial sense. In fact, in case you’ve never realized it before, you are incredibly rich. Surprise! You may not have realized how rich you are, so I thought I’d show you how…

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Giving Up the Lottery Fantasy

Ever play the lottery? If you have, did you spend a few seconds thinking about what it would be like to win when you scratched off that ticket or selected your magic numbers? Don’t lie—no one is listening except yourself. Here’s my guess: If you ever bought a lottery ticket, OF COURSE you thought about…

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Site Update: May 2008

Live from British Columbia This month’s Site Update takes place from the Amtrak Cascades train heading south to Seattle after a quick trip up to Vancouver, Canada. I had to go to the Vancouver airport to pick up my next Round-the-World plane ticket, and the quick trip that began at 6:30 this morning is almost…

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Five Journeys to Cotonou, Benin

Click to enlarge photos. I went to Benin many times between 2003 and 2005—probably about five visits in total. Each time I went, I got more and more comfortable with French, my second language, and more and more comfortable with Francophone Africa, which is a different cultural experience on its own. The first visit was…

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How To Retire the Day After Tomorrow

Fed up with work? Not enough time for the things you want to do? Here’s the answer: decide to retire! You don’t have to be 62 ½ years old, and you don’t have to be rich. In fact, you can usually make plans to retire in about 36 hours. That’s the average time it takes…

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Everyone Loves to Hate a Winner

Photo credit: WordFreak I read an online article recently that listed eight annoying people you’ll meet in the typical Starbucks. My favorite, or actually my least favorite, is the guy who hates Starbucks, but ends up going there every day. In Seattle we have no shortage of Starbucks haters, many of whom go there often.…

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10 MORE Things I Wish I Knew Before Traveling: Blogger Roundup

Two weeks ago, I wrote about 28 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started Traveling. That post received a lot of feedback, and generated a good discussion about buying medicine around the world. But what was I missing? No one person can have all the answers, so I asked a few expert travel writers…

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Dear Silent Majority, I Need Your Feedback…

I had dinner with a couple of friends on Saturday night. While we were sitting outside on a warm Seattle evening, we spent some time talking about this writing project. One of the things we discussed was how every day I write about my own stories, but I know very little about most of the…

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The Normalization of Mediocrity

I recently came back to Seattle after traveling for two weeks, and began eating simple, organic food again. I’m a vegetarian wherever I go, but I don’t always eat very well when I’m out around the world. After getting back on track after all the travel and different countries, I started feeling better within 24…

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Candlelit Notes from a Dismal Hotel Room

I’m sitting in what may be the most dreary hotel room I have ever stayed in, which is saying a lot. My room is the size of a large closet, and no, this isn’t Japan with its neat cubicle hotels. In fact, it really doesn’t matter what country I’m in at the moment. I could…

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