Discover more from Juan David’s Newsletter
Juan David's Newsletter - September 27, 2020
Becoming Ambitious, Shots of Awe, and Living Presently.
Back in 2018, I was fifteen years old and I wanted to do something over the summer. I could get a job, work on my businesses, sit around, watch Netflix, or work for free at tech startups. I chose the latter.
But how in the world was I going to find those startups?
I sent 500+ emails, called companies, asked family friends, and did everything I could but I got annoyed. So I was like “Screw it, I’m just going to go and ask them.”
I went to this startup incubator called Techstars at 1871 and asked if they were hiring. And yes, I was willing to work for free.
At first, the founders looked at me like, “Kid, how old even are you?” Most founders looked the other way but two guys were like, “Damn, let’s find something for this kid to do.”
That summer was great and met people like the governor, billionaires, and so on. But most importantly, I met Paul, the founder who gave me the opportunity. I always keep him posted on my progress and would ask how his company was doing.
Well, it turns out that Paul studied in the same college and did the same major. I’ve talked to him multiple times in the last few weeks and it reminded me of the importance of having people who were once where you are.
They often can give that little push you need. And you get to cheat because you get to talk to your future self.
Ok, looking back that was not a very normal thing for a teen to do but I was ambitious. This is exactly what this week’s essay is about where I explore how we can keep being ambitious as we get older and understand if being ambitious makes sense for us.
Eat The World Vs. Eaten by the World
When we are kids, we have many aspirational dreams and ambitious goals. You want to eat the world. Then, when you’re an adult, the world eats you.
We grow up, and the same dreams become impossible or we stop pursuing them. But why? Was it because our dreams were straight-up stupid? Or because we settled and decided they were impossible?
I want to explore this question as a kid who still has lots of ambitious dreams and wants to eat the world.
1. Ambition Rabbit Hole
I had a somewhat viral tweet, reaching over 100,000 people. Why? I asked why people lose their ambition when they grow up.
After you read this week’s essay, check out this tweet with more than 100 comments.
2. Long-Run Cost Prediction
Companies like Men’s Wearhouse press your suit free of charge FOREVER.
How do they calculate the long-run average cost of offering that service?
Reply if you know someone at Men’s Wearhouse or have any clues on how to calculate this cost.
3. Shots of Awe
One of my favorite Youtube channels is Shots of Awe by Jason Silva who is also Venezuelan🇻🇪 and was the host of Brain Games.
4. Best Science YouTube Channel
I love learning about science but sometimes it gets too abstract and that’s where I like to go back and learn the history. It helps me understand how they came up with these theories and perhaps how to take these theories forward.
I found this YouTube channel that explores science concepts from primary sources and from first principles.
My favorite video has been the one where she explained why the public perception of Nikola Tesla is wrong and the one about the story of Madame Curie.
5. Where “Living in the Present” might be coming from
The poor have always had to live for the present, but now a desperate concern for personal survival, sometimes disguised as hedonism, engulfs the middle class as well.
From one of the best books I’ve read this year called The Culture of Narcissism (more on the book next week!)
Learn how to fail. Learn how to NEVER lose. See you next week!
Thank you for reading,
Juan David Campolargo