Malaysia – Day 9

I checked out the cost to go to Iran from here, but when I checked the dates I realized that I made a gross miscalculation with regard to how long it is until I leave Malaysia. It looks like I won’t have time to do any extra travelling after all unless I finish up the work-study early or have my flight plans changed. I’ll have to look into these respective possibilities.

I shaved off my beard today. I was holding onto the hope that Anna-Maria might come and visit me here and well… though she’s a big fan of my facial hair, she’s not going to see me here.

On my commute to work I’ve been listening to the audio version of the book Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking. It’s by Malcolm Gladwell, and it’s about how we make decisions — both good and bad — and why some people so much better at making decisions than others. My friend Jason recommended it to me along with another of his books, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, which is about change and more specifically it shares a new way of understanding why change so often happens as quickly and as unexpectedly as it does.

So far Blink has been an eye opening experience; when I’m done I will certainly pick up The Tipping Point. In almost every chapter—if not every chapter—I find myself at the edge of my seat hanging on every word. I particularly liked the insight on improvisational acting (he believes in Keith Johnstone’s techniques), the story behind a massive war games held by the United States in 2002 (which in reality was a failure), and the decision for the Coco-cola Bottling Company to switch to New Coke in the 80’s (read about New Coke at Snopes). I’m only on Chapter 6 of Blink but I love everything about this book.