On Socrates

“When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.” ~ Socrates – A favorite strategy of lame politicians throughout history.

“If you want to be wrong then follow the masses.” ~ Socrates – Masses are right in the middle, but they don’t know when to get off the train before it goes over the cliff.

“True wisdom comes to each of us when we realize how little we understand about life, ourselves, and the world around us.” ~ Socrates – Be humble and stay curious, you know much less about much more than you think.

“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.” ~ Socrates – I have seen enough smiling faces in enough desperately poor countries to know that getting more money and more stuff is not the real answer we should be seeking.  Look into Minimalism.  Control of your time is worth much more than more clutter.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then is a habit.” ~ Socrates – Focusing on something meaningful to you each day will soon bring tangible and intangible benefits.  Shut out the noise.

“To find yourself, think for yourself.” ~ Socrates – Introspection is tough in this modern age of smartphones and constant virtual distractions.

“No one can teach, if by teaching we mean the transmission of knowledge, in any mechanical fashion, from one person to another. The most that can be done is that one person who is more knowledgeable than another can, by asking a series of questions, stimulate the other to think, and so cause him to learn for himself.” ~ Socrates – Thank you, Socrates!  My favorite teaching technique is asking a series of questions to get my students to understand and internalize what I am trying to convey.  Teaching is so much more than just ‘feeding the ducks’.

“The unexamined life is not worth living.” ~ Socrates – Take a long walk and take a long look at your life.  We are all on a one-way street to the graveyard, make sure your trip counts.

“I know you won’t believe me, but the highest form of Human Excellence is to question oneself and others.” ~ Socrates – Don’t believe everything you read on the Internet, except for my blog:)

“Sometimes you have to let go to see if there was anything worth holding onto.” ~ Socrates – Move to a different country or at least to a different part of your country.

“There is no possession more valuable than a good and faithful friend.” ~ Socrates – And none more difficult to acquire.

“Silence is a profound melody, for those who can hear it above all the noise.” ~ Socrates – Go for a hike or ride a bike, preferably somewhere where cars aren’t allowed.

“To move the world we must move ourselves.” ~ Socrates – Everything and all things begins and ends with you.

“Yesterday is about experience; tomorrow is about hope; today is about transitioning from one to the other. The happiest people on earth don’t have the best of everything… they make the best of everything.” ~ Socrates – Do something different today to make a difference tomorrow.

“Do it because it’s in your heart. Not because you want something in return. Employ your time in improving yourself by other men’s writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for.” ~ Socrates – I confess I have been too busy to read books lately.  I will take advantage of the summer slowdown to get back to my beloved book collection.

On Basic Training

“After a hard day of basic training, you could eat a rattlesnake.” ~ Elvis Presley – The problem is you only have 5 minutes to eat it.  I still eat way too fast because of my Air Force basic training.

“I didn’t mind basic training. It taught me that something that seems impossible at the start can be achieved.” ~ Arnold Schwarzenegger – Nothing is more amazing than taking a bunch of random small town clowns and turning them into a group of disciplined young men.

“The relationship between officers and men should in no sense be that of superior and inferior, nor that of master and servant, but rather that of teacher and scholar. In fact, it should partake of the nature of the relationship between father and son, to the extent that officers, especially commanding officers, are responsible for the physical, mental, and moral welfare, as well as the discipline and military training of the young men under their command.” ~ John A. Lejeune – The military is the first real father a lot of poor boys will ever have.

“I’d learned a lot in the Army. I knew that above all things in the world I had to become so big, so strong that people and their hatred could never touch me.” ~ Sammy Davis, Jr. – I was a clueless, racist little small town punk when I joined the Air Force at the tender young age of 18.  I had my first interracial friendship with a black kid named Harvey House, who I roomed with in Clovis AFB in New Mexico.  He was funny and smart and dispelled the nameless fear and ignorance that I was then regretfully afflicted with.  Since then, I don’t give a damn about skin color or where someone grew up or went to school.

“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.” – Elmer Davis – The best offense is a good defense.
“We don’t rise to the level of our expectations; we fall to the level of our training. – Archilochus” – This is why experience is such a big factor in hiring decisions.  Although, I personally believe in giving people a chance to learn new tricks even if it is not on their resume already.
“Lead me, follow me, or get the hell out of my way. – George S. Patton” – Basic training teaches you, mostly the hard way, how to follow so that one day you may lead.
“To be in the Army, you need to be smart or strong, and you privates ain’t either.” – You don’t have to be a genius or a bodybuilder to be a good soldier, you do need the will and the ability to ‘hurry up and wait’ and to keep going when you don’t think you can possibly move another inch.
“I swear, lying there thinking about what they might decide to do next was worse than anything they did later.”
Henry V. O’Neil – Incessant worry and the fear of the unknown, what crypto cowboys call FUD, have ‘killed’ more lives and dreams than any mere war.
“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.'” ~ Muhammad Ali – Showing up with an open mind and a closed mouth is half the secret of success.
“Continuous effort – not strength or intelligence – is the key to unlocking our potential.” ~ Winston Churchill – Get 1% better at anything every day for one short year and you will dramatically improve by 37X (1.01^365=37.78).
“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.” ~ Arnold Schwarzenegger We don’t learn much when things are going our way.  Much, if not all, of our personal and professional progress depends on figuring or grinding our way out of a mess we got ourselves into.
“There is nothing training can’t cannot do. Nothing is above its reach.” ~ Mark Twain – Train and pain today to gain and attain tomorrow.

On being single

“Being single used to mean that nobody wanted you. Now it means you’re pretty sexy and you’re taking your time deciding how you want your life to be and who you want to spend it with.” ~ Sarah Jessica Parker – I am far from sexy but I will definitely take my time on the biggest decision that we all must make.

“My alone feels so good, I’ll only have you if you’re sweeter than my solitude.” ~ Warsan Shire – I am quite comfortable with myself, but I do want someone to walk with, talk with, and laugh with.

“I must learn to love the fool in me the one who feels too much, talks too much, takes too many chances, wins sometimes and loses often, lacks self-control, loves and hates, hurts and gets hurt, promises and breaks promises, laughs and cries.” ~ Theodore Isaac Rubin – Love and accept yourself first or no one else will be able to.

“Being single isn’t the cause of loneliness, and marriage is not necessarily the cure. There are many lonely married people as well.” ~ Renee Jones – Far too many couples are just two lonely people sharing an apartment but little else.

“I love being single. I can come and go as I please and stay out as late as I want to.” ~ Eric Dickerson – As I often tell my students when I am teaching complicated financial theory, there are usually two or more sides to everything.

“Being single is pretty good. It’s a nice sense of irresponsibility.” ~ Michael Douglas – It is definitely nice to do what you like and, more importantly, to not do what you don’t like!

“The trouble is not really in being alone, it’s being lonely. One can be lonely in the midst of a crowd, don’t you think?” ~ Christine Feehan – There are 3.7 million people in the lonely little town of Xiamen I have lived in since 2016.

“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” ~ Brian Tracy – Salsa lessons, anyone?

“The trouble is not that I am single and likely to stay single, but that I am lonely and likely to stay lonely.” ~ Charlotte Bronte – A relationship is not a relationship if you don’t or can’t relate.

“There is a restless kind of consumer shopping for partners, as if the “right one” can be found by totting up a potential mate’s pluses and minuses until the number of pluses matches some mythical standards.” ~ Deepak Chopra – Online dating is not quite the same as online shopping.

“Better to be quirky alone than unhappy together.” ~ Anita Hamilton – Being with the wrong one is much worse than being with no one.

“Save a boyfriend for a rainy day – and another, in case it doesn’t rain.” ~ Mae West – A little humor to ends things off.

On Sun Tzu’s Art of War

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” ~ Sun Tzu – Unfortunately, ‘if’ is one of the biggest damn words in the dictionary.

“Victory is reserved for those who are willing to pay its price.” ~ Sun Tzu– Everybody else gets mediocrity as a consolation prize.

“In the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity.” ~ Sun Tzu Professional traders love it when everyone panics.  Whole years are made in days during these extreme periods of market dislocation.

“Victory comes from finding opportunities in problems.” ~ Sun Tzu – Most successful businesses are in the problem-solving business, or to use a bit of business jargon, they ferret out and eliminate customer pain points cheaper, faster, or better than the next guy.

“Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu – Knowing what and how to do something is not the same thing as actually doing it.

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” ~ Sun Tzu – Substitute spouse for enemy and I just saved you a heap of marital heartache.

“Correct your mistake as soon as you have found it.” ~ Sun Tzu – Most people need to make the same mistake a few dozen times first before they get around to correcting it.

“A leader leads by example not by force.” ~ Sun Tzu – A good leader with a good mission has little trouble attracting loyal followers.

“If a battle can not be won do not fight it.” ~ Sun Tzu – Much was lost in Vietnam for failing to heed this sage advice.

“The greatest victory is that which requires no battle.” ~ Sun Tzu – Brilliant strategy is carving out an unassailable market niche that no one dares attack.

“Those who are victorious plan effectively and change decisively. They are like a great river that maintains its course but adjusts its flow.” ~ Sun Tzu – A rolling budget that adapts to changing market conditions is a slick way to implement this idea in modern corporations.

“He who relies solely on warlike measures shall be exterminated; he who relies solely on peaceful measures shall perish.” ~ Sun Tzu – An aggressive offense and a strong defense are both important if you want to win more championships.

“Kill one, terrify a thousand.” ~ Sun Tzu – Fire a slacker or two from time to time to send a message to the rest of the troops.

“Sweat more during peace: bleed less during war” ~ Sun Tzu – Try to head off problems before they become real problems.  Don’t get overly complacent just because things are going smoothly this quarter.

“Opportunities multiply as they are seized.” ~ Sun Tzu – Problems also often multiply as they are ignored.

“Ponder and deliberate before you make a move.” ~ Sun Tzu – A lot of mistakes are made because we tend to shoot first and ask questions later and fail to look before we leap.  I know most of my biggest regrets are attributable to my impulsive nature.

“If you fight with all your might, there is a chance of life; whereas death is certain if you cling to your corner” ~ Sun Tzu – Sometimes you have to go all-in if you hope to make it to the final table.


On Jargon

“Incomprehensible jargon is the hallmark of a profession.” ~ Kingman Brewster, Jr. – Fancy words learned in fancy colleges pay for fancy houses.

“Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.” ~ George Orwell – If you can’t say it in simple words, you don’t understand it well enough yet.

“Jargon is the verbal sleight of hand that makes the old hat seem newly fashionable; it gives an air of novelty and specious profundity to ideas that, if stated directly, would seem superficial, stale, frivolous, or false. The line between serious and spurious scholarship is an easy one to blur, with jargon on your side.” ~ David Lehman – Fancy math formulas also serve to gussy up tired old ideas.

“I think we invent jargon because it saves time talking to one-another.” ~ John M. Smith – One of the few advantages of jargon is it creates tribal connections and shared mental models that condense what would otherwise be interminable attempts at failed communication.

“Words of the jargon sound as if they said something higher than what they mean.” ~ Theodor Adorno – Like verbal peacock feathers.

“Our business is infested with idiots who try to impress by using pretentious jargon.” ~ David Ogilvy – A few simple well-chosen words said at just the right moment say so very much more than an encyclopedia full of $10 words.

“Whoever is versed in the jargon does not have to say what he thinks, does not even have to think it properly. The jargon takes over this task.” ~ Theodor Adorno – Much jargon works harder at disguising ignorance than dispelling it.

“I was instructed long ago by a wise editor, “If you understand something you can explain it so that almost anyone can understand it. If you don’t, you won’t be able to understand your own explanation.” ~ Roger Ebert – The next time you read something dense that makes your eyes glaze over, realize the author may well have been even more confused than you feel.

“Clutter is the disease of American writing.” ~ William Zinsser – Subtraction > Addition.

On Birthdays

“As you get older three things happen. The first is your memory goes, and I can’t remember the other two.” ~ Norman Wisdom – Thankfully, we have our smartphone surgically attached to our hands to capture every magical or mundane memory and share them with our selfie friends.

“Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional.” ~ Chili Davis – Just because you celebrated another birthday doesn’t guarantee you learned much about yourself or the world in the last 12 months.  It is not that hard to piss away a year with nothing to show for it except an extra candle on the cake.

“You’re only young once, but you can be immature forever.” ~ Germaine Greer – Getting older is not that correlated to getting wiser, especially if you are doing the same old things with the same old people.

“I’m at an age when my back goes out more than I do.” ~ Phyllis Diller – The older I get, the more comfortable I am with staying home to watch a good movie or read a good book.

“Old age is like a plane flying through a storm. Once you’re aboard, there’s nothing you can do.” ~ Golda Meir – Just order another gin tonic and enjoy the rest of the flight.

“At age 20, we worry about what others think of us. At age 40, we don’t care what they think of us. At age 60, we discover they haven’t been thinking of us at all.” ~ Ann Landers – It is crazy how much time, money, worry, and energy people spend trying to impress other people who are themselves busy trying to impress others.  If we could somehow put all that wasted energy into helping others instead of impressing them, what a wonderful world it would be.

“The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age.” ~ Lucille Ball – Eating smaller portions, eating less often (i.e intermittent fasting), and eating more fresh fruits and veggies and less processed crap in a box will slow down the aging process.

“To me – old age is always twenty years older than I am.” ~ Bernard Baruch – When I was 20, I thought 40 year olds were over the hill, at 54, I would gladly trade it all for a chance to be 40 again.

“The old believe everything, the middle-aged suspect everything, the young know everything.” ~ Oscar Wilde – On a positive note, overconfident young kids in their 20s who think they know a lot more than they actually do are responsible for most of the disruptive Silicon Valley startups that have dramatically changed how we live, work, shop and play – think Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, AirBnb and Uber.

“If you want to look young, thin, and rich on your birthday, hang around a bunch of old, fat, poor people.” ~ Anthony – This is a joke, but true nonetheless.  Social media comparisons cause a lot of misery because it is the opposite case where everyone is comparing themselves all day every day to people whom seem far more happy, beautiful, rich, sexy, glamorous, etc.

On meetings

“If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be ‘meetings.'” ~ Dave Barry – Many companies have a zero-based budget (ZBB) system where each line item is reconsidered for decrease, increase or even elimination in each budget cycle.  I propose companies should adopt the same thinking to dramatically reduce and eliminate pointless meetings.  

“You should never go to a meeting or make a telephone call without a clear idea of what you are trying to achieve.” ~ Steve Jobs – Never hold a meeting without a clear purpose and a well-defined agenda.

“You have a meeting to make a decision, not to decide on the question.” ~ Bill Gates – Don’t try to cover too much ground in one meeting.

“The least productive people are usually the ones who are most in favor of holding meetings.” ~ Thomas Sowell – They also tend to do the most talking.

“Meetings are a symptom of bad organization. The fewer meetings the better.” ~ Peter Drucker – Meetings are breeding grounds for talkers, but doers would rather be out there making things happen.

“When the outcome of a meeting is to have another meeting, it has been a lousy meeting.” ~ Herbert Hoover – Things are moving way too fast in the 21st century to sit around in meetings all day and keep kicking the can down the road.  If you want to win you got to get out there and play the game.  Try to play for small stakes when you are new to something but scale it up quick when you seem to be onto something good.

“We are going to continue having these meetings, everyday, until I find out why no work is getting done.” ~ Richard Moran – Having a well-rehearsed excuse to offer up on the altar of mediocrity at the next ‘update meeting’ to explain why things are not getting done may buy you enough time to get another paycheck, but the customers and the competition don’t give a damn about your empty words.

“The longer the meeting, the less is accomplished.” ~ Tim Cook – Invite fewer people to the meeting and have the meeting while taking a walk around the corporate campus or the leafy neighborhood, at least this way you can get some exercise and fresh air if nothing else happens in the meeting.

“Meetings are indispensable when you don’t want to do anything.” ~ John Kenneth Galbraith – Meetings and commutes are two of the most miserable wastes of time and life force ever invented.

“A meeting moves at the speed of the slowest mind in the room. (In other words, all but one participant will be bored, all but one mind underused.)” ~ Dale Dauten – Think carefully about whom you allow in the room.  If possible, ban smartphones from your meetings, otherwise you are just going to have a room full of people playing with their phones and pretending to participate in the meeting.

“The usefulness of any meeting is inversely proportional to the size of the group.” ~ Lane Kirkland – Amazon has a Two Pizza rule, no meeting should be held if two pizzas can’t theoretically feed the whole team.

“I have left orders to be awakened at any time during national emergency, even if I’m in a cabinet meeting.” ~ Ronald Reagan – A lot of people may be physically present at a typical meeting, but their minds are often far far away.

On Bill Gates

“I am not in competition with anyone but myself. My goal is to improve myself continuously.” ~ Bill Gates – Pick any important area of your life (X), strive to get 1% better at it day in day out, you will miraculously be 37 times better at it a year from now: (1.01^365=37.78X).  This little idea the Japanese call kaizen made Japan one of the dominant players in global manufacturing, now they just need to apply the same diligence to making more Japanese babies.

“There will be two types of businesses in the next 5 years, those that are on the Internet, and those that are out of business” ~ Bill Gates – Amazon is eating the world.

“The computer was born to solve problems that did not exist before.” ~ Bill Gates – I started learning something about Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and the incredible ascent of all things Bitcoin and Ethereum in the last couple weeks.  All I can say is there is a whole alternate digital universe that is expanding at Warp Factor 8 that is going to seriously disrupt the old guard soon, very soon.

“If you are born poor its not your mistake, But if you die poor its your mistake.” ~ Bill Gates – The problem is we aren’t taught Personal Finance in school so people get into debt even before they get out of college and get started in life.  The only sure way to die rich if you are born poor is to spend less than you earn and let compounding work its magic on your savings.  Most people have compound interest working against them with their 18% APR credit cards and ‘buy now, pay later’ mindsets.

“I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” ~ Bill Gates – Working smart is 10X working hard.

“Vision without execution is daydreaming.” ~ Bill Gates – A plan without clear baby steps and milestones and a written timeline is not a plan, it’s just more noise.

“We get comfort from those who agree with us, but we get growth from only those who don’t agree with us!” ~ Bill Gates – Most of us hate people who don’t look and think just like us.  What you have to understand is you will be stuck forever in your so-called life if you don’t give new (i.e. weird or crazy) ideas and new (i.e. strange or scary) people a chance.  Embrace the fear and use love instead of hate as your greatest weapon.

“How you gather, manage, and use information will determine whether you win or lose.” ~ Bill Gates – This quote applies equally to people.  However, remember to love people and use things, not the other way around.

“Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important.” ~ Bill Gates – Lots of overpaid corporate middle managers are going to get outsourced to algorithms via an ominous thing management consultants call ‘robotic process automation’.  However, line managers and top managers (and software developers) will pretty much always be needed to fight the ground wars and set the strategy.

On Yoda

“When nine hundred years old you reach, look as good you will not.” Return of the Jedi – Everybody gets old(er), but some do it better and squeeze more juice out of each year.  Most of us are just rewinding the same old year over and over, some at 0.5X and some at 2X.

“Truly wonderful, the mind of a child is.” Attack of the Clones – This is one argument for diversity.  Being able to see an old problem with new eyes has solved a lot of intractable problems.  Next time you have an idea you are hopelessly in love with, run it by a 6-year old.

“A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense, never for attack.” The Empire Strikes Back – Although others would say a good offense makes the best defense.

“Adventure. Excitement. A Jedi craves not these things.” The Empire Strikes Back – Good investing is mostly boring.  If you need excitement, go to the horse track on Sunday, but just bet what’s in your pocket.  More seriously, you can put 90-95% of your wealth (or future wealth) in boring low cost index funds and gamble on meme stocks or crypto or NFT’s or (insert your crazy ass idea here) with the rest.

“Judge me by my size, do you?” The Empire Strikes Back – This applies to stature (sidebar: I am on the short side, so I love living in China because I feel average height here, although the younger generation is full of tall kids) as much as to the size of your wallet, size of your belly, size of your ambitions, size of your house, size of your ideas, size of your network, size of your mouth, size of your team.  Unfortunately, the color of your skin is judged even more harshly than size by most.

“Fear is the path to the dark side…fear leads to anger…anger leads to hate…hate leads to suffering.” The Phantom Menace – Fear, either the (rational) fear of losing your hard-earned savings or the (irrational) fear of missing out (FOMO) on the next big leveraged 100 to 1 Bitcoin move, causes 100% of the zillions lost in the financial markets each year.  Trading or investing without an edge (and yes you probably don’t have a real or sustainable edge) causes the rest of the losses.

“Wars not make one great.” The Empire Strikes Back – Pissing away your national treasure (young men included) just so you can muddle in other people’s business or prove your might doesn’t sound so great to me either.

“Do. Or do not. There is no try.” The Empire Strikes Back – This priceless gem of Yoda wisdom was creatively borrowed by Nike’s ad agency in 1988 and Nike is still making billions from Just Do It in 2021.

Bezos on Business

“We can’t be in survival mode. We have to be in growth mode.” ~ Jeff Bezos – If you aren’t stealing someone else’s customers, someone is surely stealing yours.

“One of the huge mistakes people make is that they try to force an interest on themselves. You don’t choose your passions; your passions choose you.” ~ Jeff Bezos – I don’t fully agree with Bezos on this one.  If you get better at anything, you will automatically like it better.  Everything sucks when you suck.

“Work hard, have fun and make history.” ~ Jeff Bezos – If you can have fun with interesting people by working hard at something that makes the world happier, healthier and more harmonious, the last point doesn’t really matter that much.

“Everything you are comes from your choices.” ~ Jeff Bezos – Choice of career, choice of school, choice of residence, choice of mate, choice of friends, choice of savings rate, choice of risk appetite, choice of diet, choice of lifestyle, choice of hobbies, choice of attitude, choice, choice, choice!

“People who are right most of the time are people who change their minds often” ~ Jeff Bezos – Being wrong is not a big deal, staying wrong is.  Think in terms of small bets and small experiments.  Try something small, if it is working, scale it up; if not, run another experiment.

“The smartest people are constantly revising their understanding, reconsidering a problem they thought they’d already solved. They’re open to new points of view, new information, new ideas, contradictions, and challenges to their own way of thinking.” ~ Jeff Bezos – It is easier than you think to relive the same mundane year over and over.  Try something different. Now.

“We are stubborn on vision. We are flexible on details.” ~ Jeff Bezos – There are lots of ways to get from Point A to Point B, but first we need to make sure we actually want Point B and not Point C or Point Q.

“The common question that gets asked in business is, why? That’s a good question, but an equally valid question is, why not?” ~ Jeff Bezos – If you are doing the same old things the same old way, you aren’t doing your job well.  There is a whole lot going on outside the little sandbox you are playing in.

“There are two kinds of companies, those that work to try to charge more and those that work to charge less. We will be the second.” ~ Jeff Bezos – Delivering more value at lower cost is what good business is all about.  Look into robotic process automation.  The future is algorithms and AI.

“I knew that if I failed I wouldn’t regret that, but I knew the one thing I might regret is not trying.” ~ Jeff Bezos – Bezos quit a highly lucrative job on Wall Street to move to Seattle and pursue his crazy little idea to sell stuff (initially books) online.  Personally, I don’t think Amazon was such a huge risk because he could have always landed another juicy hedge fund gig if things didn’t work out with the Internet thing.  However, he still had the guts to quit a dream job and roll the dice on an unproven startup.  I am sure his family and friends and his hedge fund boss thought he was nuts at the time.  The main reason he talked himself into going for it with Amazon was regret minimization.  He imagined himself at 80 looking back on his life and wanted to make sure he had no major regrets with what he could’ve or would’ve or should’ve done.