Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My Life as an Experiment by A.J. Jacobs

Why I read it: Running down all the Jacobs books.

Summary: Ten more lifestyle changes by A.J. Jacobs, after reading the encyclopedia and living Biblically.

My Thoughts: On one level, one might think that Jacobs was a neglected kid, starving for attention. Each of his experiments - living like George Washington for 30 days, outsourcing his life, etc. - might be seen as a cry for help, an attempt to lure in a psychiatrist to unravel layers of mental, physical, emotional and drug abuse.

I don't know A.J. from Adam, but I don't think that's it.

I think what we have in A.J. Jacobs is a man just seriously interested in the world around him, and his creative talents have allowed him the opportunity to play with his own life in ways of which most others only dream. Who has time to think rationally? or speak honestly?

Perhaps I'm, speaking in defense of A.J. because I feel a kindred connection to him. Let's face it - in 2009, I took a 30-minute walk every single day in a different place. In 2011, I took a nature walk in each of the 351 towns in Massachusetts. I live to test myself. And I have other plans for the future. Believe me, once you've done one such experiment, you start thinking, "What's next?" A.J. is just in the self-flagellation loop, and it's going to be extremely hard to get out of it.

Especially now that there's a TV series being developed about his experimental life. Go, A.J., go.

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