Swole, Smash, Dr

I should post more frequently, instead of waiting til I have 3 topics and posting 3 at once.

Getting Swole

I’m lifting weights again. Or rather, doing mostly bodyweight exercises in my apartment every other day. It’s good. There seem to be 5 main benefits:

1. Number Go Up

I like seeing numbers go up in basically anything I do! When I started, doing like 3 dips was hard. Now I can do 3x15! When I started, doing 10 push-ups was hard, now I can do 3x20! And doing 3 pull ups used to be hard, now I can do more than 3x10.

(I recently completed a life goal, sort of! When I was ~20 I thought it’d be cool to do my age in pull ups. I never did, but now I can (… in 3 sets). That’s cool.)

Numbers Go Up even more if you have barbells or dumbbells; alas, I don’t right now.

2. Loss Of Any Kind Of Neuroses Around Food

I never had a ton of neuroses (I’m lucky to be a not-overweight man), but like… as a friend recently said, we live in the Bad Place, you know? So I was always a little bit like “I’d *like* to eat more but I *shouldn’t*.” Now I eat whatever I want! I sort of have a goal to gain ~5 lbs, I don’t really care if it happens, but it means I really don’t have to worry about it at all; I eat what I want. To be so self-regulating feels great.

3. General health

Yeah yeah this is probably good for me in the long term whatever

4. Actually You Sometimes Have To Lift Heavy Things

I used to think “why lift weights? I never lift heavy things.” But actually I do! Moving furniture, cleaning things, carrying bike, and someday carrying small children. Making all that easier will be nice.

5. Looking A Little Better

One time like 7 years ago I joined a gym because I “should” (see point 3) and bought their intro package of 5 classes + a personal consultation or something. It was not a gym for swole bros, they were all kinds of alternative movement-based exercises and bodyweight exercises and stuff, it was probably pretty cool. But at one point the guy I had my consultation with was like “so… do you want to get big, or do you want to get strong?” and I was like “Strong! pff, who cares about how you look.” And he was kinda subtly like “yeah, cool.”

What I should have taken from that is, “this gym focuses on getting strong, not big. (not that they’re exclusive at all; you’ll probably get one as you get the other, to some extent.)”

What I did take from it is “I gave the Right Answer; wanting to look muscley is vain.”

But you know what? Looking muscly is a little bit cool! I’m not gonna get all Schwarzenegger here, but I like looking at myself and thinking I have good muscles. It’s not the whole picture, but y’know it’s one benefit out of 5.


Super Smash Bros Melee was a game for Gamecube released in 2001. It was great, I played it in high school, it was great. But it’s had a behind-the-scenes competitive scene for almost 20 years now, which is pretty incredible. Some documentaries if you find this as fascinating as I do:

The Smash Brothers

there will never ever be another melee player like Hungrybox

Metagame (haven’t seen yet)

I saw a tournament in 2018 in Oakland. It was wild - there were hundreds of people there. (not knowing anything, I rooted for Hungrybox because I also “main” Jigglypuff (“main” meaning I played Puff in a tournament once, and was proud to only get 2-stocked)). I think that’s like rooting for the Yankees. Whatever, he’s kind of a heel, that’s cool :D

I love this image - I think it’s supposed to be Mew2King on the left and Mango on the right? For the record, when I’m playing games, I’m more like the guy on the right.


I get something out of watching it, in the way that I imagine a lot of people get about tennis or chess. Different players have different styles, sometimes you can see real particularly good moves that they did, it’s real tense, etc.

uh but downside: it’s super nerdy in a way that I’m not really happy about; gamers, y’know? It’s the only community I’ve seen that’s maybe even more uniformly male than Magic. The documentaries touch on this, but only briefly. to me, seems like the community is not toxic gamer shit, and has built some bridges between people of different races and backgrounds: cool! but, it does seem 95%+ men, and there’s a decent amount of casual low-grade sexism and homophobia. That’s not real compelling.


ok obv if anyone wants to use Dr and they’ve done the Thing We All Agree Lets You Use Dr and you tell them they shouldn’t, then go to hell. But side thing I’ve wondered for years before it became a news item: should I start using Dr. more for myself? Should I list myself in Linkedin/etc as Dr. Dan Tasse? I never did because I thought it was vain and silly, but there’s always that nagging doubt: “I should normalize calling myself Dr so that other less-privileged Drs can call themself Dr and thereby level the playing field.” I wanna support women and minority Drs, but I think the idea of Dr in general is pretty dumb. How come you get a title for working 6 years in some career paths and not others?

Is the idea that Dr-achievements (phd/med/etc school) are harder than the corresponding other kinds of work you could be doing? … maybe! grad school is tough. but geez, getting to change your name because you’ve “done a hard thing”, we as a society are definitely gonna miscalibrate that one.

Is the idea that Dr-achievements are somehow Good for humanity and we should reward them? uh, I should give mine back, mine was “all this data seems cool but is pretty useless, I guess you could use it for this shitty feature if you’re airbnb.” (I still cringe about parts of that thesis.)

Should we all have collectively ignored this froth, because it’s a case of Someone Wrote Something Bad Somewhere? yeah probly :shrug:

blog 2023 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010