If you have ever bought the short lived Barnes and Noble Portable Professor series PLEASE NOTE this is an exact copy except that the cover art is different and the titles are slightly changed. I ended up buy books I already own. That said, Kreefts books are easily the very best I have ever read/heard. His Philosophy of Religion title is worth hearing over and over again.
Total disclosure- I did crossfit for a month about two years ago and had good results and I continue to watch it on TV.
Crossfit refers to a fitness based sport in which participants do a number exercises in a race to finish the list (which they call a WOD) first. To train for this event competitors do crossfit workouts. The workouts are designed so that most people including the obese, the elderly and super elite athletes can join in. Times are posted so everyone can compare results.
The writer of this book constantly confuses a crossfit workout with a crossfit competition. In a full out competition everyone uses the same weight and they compete for big money on TV. At the gym you are just getting stronger. This simple confusion makes up more than half of his arguments. He makes a big deal about how different people need to lift different weights which in the gym they all do. There is a lot of talk about how beginner athletes should not compete with more advanced athletes which in the gym of course they don't. Everyone know who everyone is so I know not to compare myself to the obese or elderly folk or most of the women nor super advanced guys who look like toy action figures. I know that I can outrun the 350 pound strongman but I can't out lift him. Then there are the men who are about my size and build and fitness level and we can all compete and it's fun.
He has some really broken arguments about the choices of exercises, especially with a kipping pull up. If you do not know what a kipping pull up is you can google it but basically it is a pullup plus momentum that uses a lot more muscles of the body. The swinging lets you pull higher and do reps faster but they will exhaust you much faster. 1 kipping pull up ( to the nipples) is about as hard as 1 traditional pull up but ten kipping pullups is harder than 40 pull-ups. Mr. Clinger goes on and on about how this kind of pull up is wrong and that it is both performed wrong and that it gives all the wrong results. That it is a separate exercise seems totally lost on him. Yes, crossfitters know what a traditional pull up is- they CHOOSE to do kipping pull ups because the workouts prefer full body movements over isolation movements.
He spends time talking about crossfitter nutrition even though crossfit does not have an official diet. He keeps saying how bad a low carb diet is though I have never heard a crossfitter describe his diet as "low-carb" Glassman does Zone (which can be considered low carb though Glassman doesn't) and eats lots of vegetables but simply encourages people to eat naturally. The most common diet is Paleo though the current champion Rich Fronning just eats whatever he wants. Mr Clinger is just plain making stuff up.
Everything gets compared to bodybuilding. I don't have a problem with bodybuilding but kettle-bells, calisthenics, olympic rings and aerobics are all good too. To Mr Clinger everything that is not bodybuilding (bar or dumbbell 5-15 reps- isolation exercises) is simply wrong
There is more- much more that is wrong or illogical. The only point that I agree with is that Cross-fit has a far too relaxed attitude about Rhabdo which occurs in a small number of participants.
There are REAL complaints to be had about cross-fit. The competitions do not have weight classes so anyone with a small frame can never compete on the national level. The schools lack uniformity so you never know how advanced the athletes or the exercises will be from one gym to another. These issues are never talked about. From what I can tell the author saw a kipping pull up- did not understand it and then he wrote the book
This is just a simple list of basic, intuitive, common knowledge tips such as get enough sleep, try not to get overly stressed, get enough exercise etc. There is absolutely nothing in here that your mother has not already told you to do anyways. There is nothing in here that is not an intuitive step to being generally healthy. These are not even things that you "should do" as much as things you are probably already doing if you are healthy person. Total waste of money
95 theses against the school system and I don't think I agree with the author on a single one of them. Pretty impressive since I love the authors he cites, I love the homeschooling and schooling movements, survived some extremely bad school experiences and loved being home schooled. Most of his complaints are that school teachers engage in politics and behind the scenes drama, favoritism, rank based on education with the people who hold the fewest credentials being given the least work and the most demeaning tasks and with the most educated and most powerful staff calling the shots. In that case I guess we should shut down all newspapers, hospitals, grocery stores... just about everything. Most of his examples are very specific to his own work history and how he did not get along with some of his peers. There is a lot of talk about his principal who he constantly refers to as "Chairman Mao" because being unwilling to negotiate with a teachers assistant is just like-- genocide? This is the first and only book about homeschooling that I find to be poorly thought out and grossly harmful to the movement. The reader has a hard time with some words, I cringe every time he says "ask" as he will say "ax a question" At least he has the decency to read quickly. I wish more readers could match his pace. Though his pace is inconsistent- when he is reading fast he goes at what I think is the perfect pace. If he can develop a bit of annunciation and double check how to say key names and big words he could be a great reader in the future
Write with your non-dominant hand. Why-- dunno. Maybe you will think of something new. What is that good for. Idunno. The example that keeps coming up is "what animal would you want to be?" my dominant right hand says tiger but my non-dominant left says sparrow- what does that mean? I don't know. It is not useful and hearing it over and over for several hours does not shed any light on the topic. This might have been an interesting paragraph but after this book I never want to hear about this topic again until someone somewhere figures out what this is good for
This book moves very fast and covers a lot of topics throwing out logical vocabulary and case studies and clear examples at a super rapid pace. If I did not know all of the stories he was talking about before I read the book I would be very frustrated. He might mention the Orson Wells War of the Worlds Radio Show incident and quickly move on. If you don't already ready know the story than you are out of luck. For us that know this material it is like six books in one. The question might be- why read a book if you know all the material- meh, it's fun, it's healthy to review, it is nice to hear it from a new perspective. But if someone said that he was moving too quickly or not explaining himself enough I would totally understand
This is a book about kids who wanted to go to school in Europe and found ways to go. This is NOT a book about how those schools are different. Any discussion about the differences in the school systems is a footnote to the real topic of the book- long overly dramatized mini-novels about kids who want to go to Europe- Why do they want to go? Meh, Not important. Every time the writer comes dangerously close to having to say something substantive about her supposed topic she very suddenly and awkwardly changes the subject. She might have though she was being suspenseful but I don't have a whole lot of patience for writers who want to fill their non-fictions with pointless stories, all of which are overly dramatized to pad her book. Who cares how depressed these kids were about the weather and what they thought about their hair when they wanted to go to school in Europe? How about telling us the differences in the schools? Differences in the administration? Differences in the techniques? Differences in the discipline? Differences in the teachers? Differences in the culture? Differences in the schedules, curriculum, athletics, funding ANYTHING! What about a book about The Smartest Kids in the World and How They Got That Way? Would that be too much to ask? I am going to get a refund. This book is nothing like advertised. People who like short novels about kids getting into European schools will find this book entertaining.
This sounds worse than if it was recorded on an olde audio cassette player- there seems to be a vacuum or loud air conditioner in the backround. Doors opening and closing. the reader stumbles on his lines, trails off, mumbles and reads slowly with long pauses. I got about twenty minutes in. While I would not be surprised if I had missed some of the content all I got from the book was that it is important to develop personal problem solving skills- not instructions on how to do it. I can't go any further. I hope I can get a refund.
This is just a long LONG series of seemingly random quotes from people who worked at Nickelodeon in the 80's and 90's. The program gives a name and then a quote- over and over. No attempt is made to link any name to any program or role so if you don't recognize a name then you are out of luck. In fact, many of the quotes mention other names also without explanation and you have to try to figure out who these people are as well. I spent the entire book just trying to figure out who was being quoted and who was being talked about. From what I have pieced together the contributors are mainly directors, executives and actors. Again- all they give you is a name and a few sentences so the extreme majority of the time you have no idea what show or what era the line is related to and there is no pattern. Sometimes there will be a bunch of lines that mostly relate to "Are You Afraid of the Dark" followed by a bunch of lines that mostly relate to "Salute Your Shorts" but even these are not consistent blocks and the transitions are not announced.
AGAIN, I need to really drive this point home- there is NO commentary except a name and then a quote- and then a name and then a quote. You don't know if this is a child actor or a stage hand and because it is so very scrambled YOU CAN'T KNOW WHAT THE QUOTE IS ABOUT! Waste of time and money.
A real shame because with just a little effort it could have been fun instead of frustrating
This book is an adult variation on the homeschooling movement- more specifically the un-schooling movement which focuses strongly on self guided education. Themes include ways to get into college courses without paying (and without accreditation and sneaking into expensive seminars and getting jobs that utilize a persons skills in spite of education. The idea that a person might not have highly sought after technical skills to begin with seems totally lost on the author. Much of the book focuses on how great it was for hundreds of now successful individual people to have skipped high school and college in preference of their own path- so far less time is really spent on educating ones self. It is however a dandy little guide in making your life more interesting and sparking new ways of thinking but I am not sure how much more marketable it can make someone. I think most people with marketable skills are aware that certification is an outdated hassle and many employers do too. Those people are already looking for loopholes to bypass those requisites. I would recommend this book to people interested in the Homeschool/ unschool movement or to people looking for new ways to learn things- don't expect this one to make you any money or help you to get a job. The ability to acquire new marketable skills (for adults) is hardly discussed
I would have preferred if she shared her views on what would make schools better or worse. For the most part the criticism for schools is that they are "bad" and should be "good". That the levels of proficiency in math and science are "low" and they should be "high" and the best solution is the get "better" teachers. I wanted her to say what kinds of traits and behaviors make a better teacher or what makes a better atmosphere for learning. She did share her views on the voucher system (she is for it in cases that it allows kids to get better education results) and for strong teacher evaluation including kids ranking the teachers. However, more of this book is on her personal story of growing up, getting jobs, rubbing shoulders with important people and occasionally complaining about the teachers union. for Michelle Rhee's views on the teachers unions watch the big documentaries on education reform today such as The Cartel and Waiting for Superman (starring Michelle Rhee) also on the topic of education reform I recommend The War on Kids
I still hope that Rhee works to make schools better, the reforms she suggests are too simple to fill a book but are difficult to fill a life's work. she is indeed a hero- When she has something more to say- I hope to listen
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