Be content to appear clueless or stupid in extraneous matters

Reading Howard Marks Letter today and reminded me a good old quote:


“If you wish to improve,” Epictetus once said, “be content to appear clueless or stupid in extraneous matters.”

One of the most powerful things we can do as a human being in our hyperconnected, 24/7 media world is say: “I don’t know.” Or more provocatively, “I don’t care.” Not about everything, of course – just most things.

Because most things don’t matter, and most news stories aren’t worth tracking.



Where is Yuan?

I haven’t post much lately due to readings, research, and a “side attachment”. Titan is a thick book about 700 pages and a time sink, but a rather enjoyable one. I finally finished it after like 20hours of reading spread little over 3 weeks. I will give myself some time to reflect and absorb the life of J Rockefeller before I write its review. In the meantime, I picked up “common stock and uncommon profit” based on Buffett’s references, which should be a much easier and briefer reading than the previous one.

Amid of all my works, readings and writings, I looked into NASD now the FINRA and NASAA exams and licensees. It seems to me, at this point at least, the CFA and NASD series 7 exams ought to be my next near future goals as my desire to to take my financial interests onto the next level. However, S7 requires NASD sponsorship, which I am currently seeking. Free feel to refer or provide this to me.

Side attachment you ask? well let’s just say, the weather lately is cold and rainy, I wonder when the sun will shine and provide some warmth.

Recommended Book List from Rich Karlgaard


Books to Get Rich By
Rich Karlgaard 10.08.07

Theory of Capitalism

The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World–by Alan Greenspan; The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable–by Nassim Nicholas Taleb; Wealth and Poverty–by George Gilder; Prophet of Innovation: Joseph Schumpeter and Creative Destruction–by Thomas K. McCraw; On the Wealth of Nations–by P. J. O’Rourke; The Road to Serfdom— by Friedrich Hayek; Flat Tax Revolution: Using a Postcard to Abolish the IRS–by Steve Forbes; The Way the World Works–by Jude Wanniski; The Twilight of Sovereignty–by Walter Wriston.

History and Heroes

Losing My Virginity: How I’ve Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way–by Richard Branson; Bowerman and the Men of Oregon: The Story of Oregon’s Legendary Coach and Nike (nyse: NKEnews people )’s Cofounder–by Kenny Moore; Bill & Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World’s Greatest Company–by Michael S. Malone; Gates: How Microsoft (nasdaq: MSFTnews people )’s Mogul Reinvented an Industry and Made Himself the Richest Man in America–by Stephen Manes and Paul Andrews; Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist–by Roger Lowenstein; Walt Disney (nyse: DISnews people ): The Triumph of the American Imagination–by Neal Gabler; The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin–by Benjamin Franklin; The House of Morgan: An American Banking Dynasty and the Rise of Modern Finance–by Ron Chernow; The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression–by Amity Shlaes.

How Capitalism Works Today

Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow’s Big Changes–by Mark Penn and E. Kinney Zalesne; The New Normal: Great Opportunities in a Time of Great Risk–by Roger McNamee; The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail–by Clayton Christensen; The Elephant and the Dragon: The Rise of India and China and What It Means for All of Us–by Robyn Meredith; Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy–by Thomas Sowell.

Instructional Tips

Bull’s Eye Investing: Targeting Real Returns in a Smoke and Mirrors Market–by John Mauldin; Rule #1: The Simple Strategy for Successful Investing in Only 15 Minutes a Week!–by Phil Town; Boomtown USA: The 7 1 / 2 Keys to Big Success in Small Towns–by John M. Schultz; The Intelligent Investor–by Benjamin Graham; The Only Three Questions That Count: Investing by Knowing What Others Don’t–by Kenneth L. Fisher; The Elements of Style–by William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White; Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind–by Al Ries and Jack Trout; Guerrilla Marketing: Secrets for Making Big Profits From Your Small Business–by Jay Conrad Levinson; Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!–by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon L. Lechter; How We Got Here: A Slightly Irreverent History of Technology and Markets–by Andy Kessler; The Art of the Start: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything–by Guy Kawasaki; Accounting Workbook for Dummies–by John A. Tracy.

Management Secrets

In Search of Excellence: Lessons From America’s Best-Run Companies–by Thomas J. Peters and Robert H. Waterman; It’s Your Ship: Management Techniques From the Best Damn Ship in the Navy–by Captain D. Michael Abrashoff; Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap … and Others Don’t–by Jim Collins.

Food for the Soul

They Call Me Coach–by John Wooden with Jack Tobin; Think and Grow Rich–by Napoleon Hill; The Fountainhead–by Ayn Rand; The Acts of the Apostles–by Luke; The Purpose-Driven Church–by Rick Warren; Move Ahead With Possibility Thinking–by Robert Schuller; The Greatest Salesman in the World–by Og Mandino; The Richest Man in Babylon–by George Clason; The Soul of a New Machine–by Tracy Kidder.

Useful Entertainment

Options: The Secret Life of Steve Jobs, a Parody–by Fake Steve Jobs; The Hypomanic Edge: The Link Between a Little Craziness and a Lot of Success in America–by John D. Gartner; Investment Biker–by Jim Rogers; All the Money in the World: How The Forbes 400 Make–and Spend–Their Fortunes–by Peter Bernstein and Annalyn Swan; Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game