Before I get into the magic that is this book, I need to give the author a quick introduction and let you know about his website. Kalid Azad runs the website www.betterexplained.com and it is one of my favorite on the internet.
The knowledge on this website should be implemented in every math program across the globe. Azad’s gift is taking the complicated concepts in mathematics and explaining them using simple analogy and real world examples.
I got an email asking me to give my one key to my personal success. I answered the email because I ALWAYS answer emails (what’s the point of the internet if I can’t communicate with people) but I immediately had two reservations. The first one is that I don’t consider myself at the destination of success yet. I am moving strongly in the right direction but I don’t think my life is a greater success than anyone else that decides to go after what they want.
Concentration. The ability to devote your attention to a task while maintaining situation awareness. The action or power of focusing one’s attention or mental effort. Dealing with one particular thing above all others.
This reminds me of something I once read about the famous poker player, Phil Ivey. Phil’s concentration on the game of poker is so great that he does not notice when cocktail waitresses come to the table. One writer says that Phil Ivey’s concentration is so great that if you watch him on tape he’s eyes never leave he board. Most guys look away and catch a glimpse of attractive women walking by but not Phil. He is completely absorbed into the game. Poker is he, and he is poker.
Victoria Amat Curam. This is Latin for “Victory loves preparation”. This is perhaps my favorite saying and a code I live by. Being smart helps and being tough keeps you in the fight, but preparation is king and keeps you from relying on might. This is why my first shirt carries this banner.
I’ve was never into the idea of putting my name on the back of shirts for guys to wear. I’m an unusual fighter this way. I don’t want people to wear a bunch of “Team Latimore” shirts. Guys who sale shirts have approached me with variations of the idea and I wasn’t a fan. If I’m going to sell something to people, I want to sell the something that is representative of the mindset and ideas that I embrace. So as they say, if you want something done then do it yourself.
Escalation of force. The standard of force continuum. Rules of engagement. Regardless of the name it goes by the concept is the same: use no more force than necessary to neutralize opposition. There is a beautiful poem of sorts in martial arts that sums up this idea neatly.
“It is better to avoid than to block, It is better to block than to strike, It is better to strike than to hurt, It is better to hurt than to maim, It is better to maim than to kill, It is better to kill than to be killed, All life is precious and none can be replaced”
You do what you have to do to stop someone from hurting you, but no more than that. Compassionate aggression. Damage control. Do just enough to stop your opponent from hurting you. Force escalation is practiced to avoid damage that could ultimately result in an unnecessary fatality. For the less compassionate in the audience–the ones all about throwing blows in a vocal confrontation, stomping a dude out that’s already down, or even dumping a box of bullets into a guy that got the best of you–there is a more practical reason for following this code. If you can’t justify your use of force in a court of law, then you could get anything from aggravated assault to manslaughter. The length of time varies, but jail is jail and all of you reading this should be saying “fuck that!”