The Random Show: Hating Tech, Hidden Japanese Gems, Sexual Awkwardness, and More (#46)

Ep 46: Hating Tech, Hidden Japanese Gems, Sexual Awkwardness, and More

This episode of The Random Show is a mind snack… fueled by wine. There are dozens of topics covered in this bromantic session of scatterbrained nonsense.

Like what? To start off: hidden gems in Japan, hating tech, Kevin’s new obsessions (and projects), gifts, books we’re reading, excessive sexual awkwardness, and much more. O-tanoshimi dane!

For all previous episodes of The Random Show, including the infamous China Scam episode, click here.

Can’t see the video above? Click here.

Want audio to listen on the go?  Here you go…

You can find the transcript of this episode here. Transcripts of all episodes can be found here.

This podcast is brought to you by 99Designs, the world’s largest marketplace of graphic designers. Did you know I used 99Designs to rapid prototype the cover for The 4-Hour Body? Here are some of the impressive results.

This episode is also brought to you by ExOfficio, which I’ve personally used since 2005 or so. They make ultra-lightweight, quick drying, antimicrobial clothing for men and women. Here’s my own ultra-light packing list (scroll down for video), which went viral.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What should other people be more grateful for this Thanksgiving? Perhaps something regularly overlooked? Please share in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…


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Selected Links from the Episode

Abbreviated Show Notes

  • Thoughts on WatchVille  [5:00]
  • The environment and new book recomendations [11:50]
  • Fermented coffee beans [18:45]
  • Tips for ice baths [24:45]
  • Tim’s next big thing (or not) [40:15]
  • How to get involved in the tech scene without tons of capital [42:25]
  • On Influence by Robert Cialdini [45:15]
  • Too Many Cooks video recommendation [49:35]
  • Gratitude this coming Thanksgiving [50:50]

People Mentioned

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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80 Replies to “The Random Show: Hating Tech, Hidden Japanese Gems, Sexual Awkwardness, and More (#46)”

  1. Tim- you mentioned being turned off from math at a young age- I’ve seen this before particularly in very bright young men- they either aren’t challenged enough or are not encouraged to be engaged in the learning process- what advice would you give a new mom of a boy? I think about this shit all the time & just want to get any input from a guys perspective how I can foster an environment where imagination/curiosity/learning are encouraged! Thanks!

    1. beastlady – Check out Tim’s recent podcast with Nick Ganju. He goes into detail about what happened at a young age that turned him off and he also talks about how it was finally presented to him in a way that made him “get it”.

  2. I’m posting this comment before I watch the particular episode above.

    This is THE best show on the internet. I’m always super excited to see it in my RSS reader.

  3. Wow can’t believe you guys said really that on Silicon Valley, I thought none of the big guys was aligned with me and some of my friends. Applause!

  4. Nice house Tim. I would like to know how did you chose/design it e.g. what do you think you need to have, type of spaces, how to chose a neighborhood, if it is a 4 Hour House in terms of mainteinance, etc.

      1. Sorry, I tried to paste the link to comment, not embed video. Go to the Youtube video and look for Eliezer Garrido’s comment with list of books with links.

  5. Promise you will do one of these at least once a month…these are bloody fantastic…also more Darya please and when will Tim’s gf make an appearence?

  6. Thanks very much, especially loved all the book recommendations. Ever think of giving away a guest spot on the show? Would be fun to be a fly on your wall.

  7. Hi Tim,

    First of all – love your show! The diversity of topics, the caliber oh guests and how you’re able to deconstruct their tactics&strategies are all just great.

    It’s just the second English podcast I consistently listen to after the Fresh Air, and I’ve tried many)

    PS please interview Louis CK

    From Siberia with love,


  8. Hi Tim,

    love your show! It’s only the 2nd podcast I consistently listen to after starting learning English (the first one is NPR’s Fresh Air), and I’ve tried a lot!

    The breadth of opinions of your guests, their diversity and how you’re able to deconstruct their routines and unique path to excellence is amazing. But the most appealing part for me is your personal touch and congruence, and how you keep being human (and present your guests as such) even in light of all your combined achievement. Inspiring.

    PS Please interview Louis CK

    From Siberia with Love,


  9. Tim, good tip on Cialdini’s Influence. I can’t believe Kevin Hadn’t read it yet! It’s the one of those foundational books on psychology and influence. I believe the first edition was written in the 80’s and it had a different, non-businessy tone.

  10. Be thankful for being fearless. Anxiety sucks the life out you. If you don’t have that on your plate, be grateful and enjoy the freedom.

  11. Tim, there were a few topics you discussed here on the video including illustration art style and ‘hating tech’ that have very strong generation implications that I have been watching/analyzing for years.

  12. I don’t have one thing I’d recommend being thankful for, but i’ve just finished reading A Year of Living Biblically, and am now making the effort to be thankful for lots of small things as AJ does. I definitely feel happier for doing so. Thanks for recommending the book

  13. No biggie but I have had Tag Watches for over 25 Years and Kevin mispronounced Tag Heuer. It should be pronounced Hoyer. Just a heads up…I know that it is nitpicky but hey he is the watch guy..I downloaded the app and all is good. Thanks for the content.

  14. Random act of kindness. Many people have become so grumpy, rude and selfish. I celebrate all who exhibit kindness to others!

  15. Amazing as usual.

    And Tim I thought your concept of arranging books so that they catch your eye is a really cool ideia.

    I wait in anticipation for the next random show.

    Great job!!!

  16. Hey Tim, have you heard of the Finnish Vipukirves axe? I think you’d really like it! It does make less sound chopping wood than usual though, so you lose a way to scare your neighbors if you get it. Here’s a link to their site: (no affiliation). Scroll down for the badass usage videos.

  17. Thanks for this! The random show is the best, allways puts me in a good mood and make me question my intellect. Im gonna go read a new book now, trying to read one a week:)

  18. I’m thankful for that.

    Always a pleasure to watch ! I hope you’ll make an another one with your new years resolutions, including a lots of crazy experiences.

    I’m still waiting for A.J Jacobs on your podcast, should I beg Santa for this ? :).

    Love your peace of mind and humor on the show.

  19. Tim, I have one important question for you:

    *What are the criteria you use when choosing your teachers or models?

    What method do you use to find them?

    This is something you’re very good at. Almost every person you mention as someone you admire, or look up to, when I research them myself, I end up agreeing.

    For example, Dmitry Klokov in this episode. I looked him up, and guess what… turns out to not only be a methodical athlete, but philosophically intelligent aswell.

    Same with many others you’ve mentioned, in other contexts.

    Great episode. Love the office.

    Is the bust (head) of Seneca the same as the one on the Penguin’ book? (letter from a stoic)

    1. S.K. Do you listen to his podcasts? Reason I ask is because he eludes to this kind of info in alot of them if you listen closely. Great question though!

  20. Second, less important question:

    For someone interested in trying out Projectiles (throwing/short distance weapons), where would you start?

    Axes or knives? Any specific models?

  21. Ahhh the progressive hipster liberals were in full form that night, who all were wearing skinny jeans besides Kevin’s Ol’ lady.

  22. Kevin,

    What the hell is that on your head? looks like a baseball cap/newsboy hybrid.

    Did you buy that at Duluth Trading?

    Pretty sweet man….

  23. I tried to identify as many books as possible from Tim’s bookshelves for those who may be interested. Hope he doesn’t mind the book stalking.

    Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel – Rolf Potts –

    Mastery – Robert Greene – 2012

    Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life – Anne Lamott – 1995

    Zorba the Greek – Nikos Kazantzakis – 1996

    Musashi: An Epic Novel of the Samurai Era – Eiji Yoshikawa

    Dune – Frank Herbert – 1990

    The Magic of Thinking Big – David J. Schwartz – 1987

    Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future – Peter Thiel – 2014

    The 80/20 Principle – Richard Koch – 1999

    The Effective Executive – Peter F. Drucker – 2006

    Living the 80/20 Way – Richard Koch – 2014

    The Black Swan – Nassim Nicholas Taleb – 2010

    Antifragile – Nassim Nicholas Taleb – 2014

    A Lycanthropy Reader: Werewolves in Western Culture – Charlotte F. Otten – 1986

    The Far Side Gallery – Gary Larson – 1984

    Slaine: The Horned God – Pat Mills and Simon Bisley – 2011

    The Sandman – Neil Gaiman – 2013

    Wide Angle: National Geographic Greatest Places – Ferdinand Protzman – 2011

    The Illusion of Life – Disney Animation – 1995

    Norman Rockwell’s Christmas Book – Molly Rockwel – 1993

    Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big – Bo Burlingham – 2007

    The Book of Five Rings – Miyamoto Musashi – 2012

  24. Great episode! Kevin Rose is looking kind of swoll…the shirt? Or some new workout regimen? I’ve been watching the show for over four years — love it!

  25. Kevin and Tim, “The magic of thinking big” is a good book. Thanks Tim. But, in the book, there is a horrendous comment about the vertues of dropping the atomic bombs in Japan. It’s just one sentence but, oddly enough, for me it just made me doubt all the good stuff in there. Kevin, nice to hear you’re a bit into watches. Did you know that most right-handed people wear their watch on their left wrist. It kind of gets less of a beating over there. Also, most watch companies adjust their mechanical watches to run best for right-handed people… I know, there’s no justice but it’s a fact. Thanks for the show. I’m a big fan.

  26. Great show! Keep up the great work. Tim you should do some of your podcast in HD Video, that would be super bad a$$.

  27. You and Kevin make a hilarious duo. This is great (and I’d love to see more) because Kevin never let’s you get ahead of yourself and forces you to clarify your points. Keep ’em coming!

  28. Hello, Tim

    You caution investors on the dangers of the possible bubble in startup tech. I think you’re right. My question: Have you or your pals in the VC world considered private equity (buyouts, or micro-buyouts) as an alternative to angel investing? That guy Taleb, whose book is sitting on your shelf, apparently has missed his own point on the dangers of neomania: he advised people to “barbell” their investments with the best payoff/risk bet being VC. In reality, the best bet from his philosophy viewpoint should be PE, and W Buffett, for one, has lo-o-ong been practicing it, although not too effectively compared to the possible results.

    As a management researcher I see that: 1) all companies (from 3-person start-up, to the “best-managed” General Electric) are mismanaged compared to their real potential, and 2) there is an elegant solution to their management follies, based on the approach you can see at Jack Stack’s companies. It’s an automatic “Jack-in-the-bottle” method which Jack S and Co haven’t figured out yet. Producing stunning results with it is a breeze – regardless of bad IPOs or any calamities in the fin markets.

  29. Tim, finally got around to the Nick Ganju episode of the podcast — as always, great stuff.

    Very simply, just wanted to reach out to offer assistance if you ever need it with setting up usable/dynamic Excel spreadsheets/dashboards. Corporate Finance guy here w/ 6+ years of pretty advanced Excel experience…financial modeling, analysis, etc.

  30. Hi Tim,

    I could not find a blog post related to the Avoid Decision Fatigue podcast, so posting here instead. Usually your podcast are well referenced and it would be very helpfull with some on this subject the studies I found after listening to the podcast are all related to self control more or less, with the one on the judges somewhat closer to what I’m looking for.

    I work in a Air Traffic Controll and the notion that there is a simple correlation between the number of decisions made and the decreasing quality of the decisions as a factor of the number is really interesting and not reflected in current studies. They focus on stress and stressors, stress fatigue and physical fatigue . If you can shed some light on your sources I would be very grateful.

  31. hey Tim,

    Saw you mentioned you took doxycycline. Is the probiotic refeeding working for you? I tried a probiotic called “inner eco” at whole foods that is really good that I recommend you give a try to. Did you by chance use a prescription drug for hair in your past? If so, can you email me? I have some more info for you.

  32. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the startup scene. I do too love to develop my talents, rather than pitching for the next 2 million dollar for an app. You said, that the good entrepreneurs are not arrogant. I think arrogance is a false understanding of self-confidence what is actually not. Arrogance is the opposite pole of being shy or dependant without having found balance. Not being arrogant are in my opinion often developed non 3ed-chakra persons.

  33. Watching the random show is one of my fav things to watch. You both are friggin hilarious but you also provide alot of value in the stuff you talk about. Thanks for taking the time to put these out. I always look forward to them!

    I love your wall shelves setup with the books!

  34. Hi Tim,

    Just thought I’d let you know that your redirects in your emails appear to be broken.

    Hope all is well.


  35. Dudes, the random show is genuinely my favorite podcast on the interwebbynetsworld. You guys really should do some more. So fun to listen to. ✌️

  36. You’ve talked about fermentation many times. I’ve been making and eating sourkraut ever since I heard an interview with Sandor Katz, author of the Art of Fermentation (and Wild Fermentation, which you have mentioned). Get him on the show already!

    (It.s a huge topic. Sauerkraut is just the well-known tip of the iceberg. And there’s a place called the Kefiry in Sebastopol, CA. Living in Sweden myself I can’t go, but since you’re closer … 🙂 )

  37. Hi Tim,

    I understand if you don’t make this comment public.

    I absolutely love your work and it’s changed my life.

    The random show is one of my favorite things on the internet.

    I believe it was through your writing that I first became aware of the concept of being the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with and in a broader sense the importance of associating yourself with good people.

    In light of this I’m extremely surprised that you would endorse Alex Day’s book and claim to be friends with him.

    I find it hard to imagine that you’re not aware of his fall from grace, especially as the book in your hand lost it’s publishing deal specifically because of his actions and has been self published instead.

    His Youtube channel has fallen below 1 million subscribers again and his merchandise was removed from the DFTBA label.

    If you Google his name the results are BBC articles about his predatory behavior and it’s also one of the first things mentioned on his Wikipedia page.

    Also this list of accusations is on the first page of the results

    This comment might seem all a bit over the top just from giving him a mention but having seen the news articles and statements from victims I’m just really shocked and disappointed you would want to associate yourself with him at all.

    I hope perhaps you just didn’t know, or in the case that you did you have strong reasoning for helping him out.

    Sorry if this feels like an attack, I absolutely love your stuff and you’re a huge role model for me, but out of concern for your own reputation I just couldn’t let this one slide.


    1. Hi John,

      Wow, I had no idea at all. Thank you for the comment. I’ll check this out. If true, it’s very sad.

      Much appreciate the heads up,


  38. I appreciate seeing the book recommendations (and other links) laid out so clearly in the show notes.

    As for being grateful, I think more people need to be grateful for the free and low cost education available to them today. For example, many cities in North America have outstanding public libraries. In Toronto, for example, the public library offers literacy courses, computer courses and an impressive e-book/online resource collection (in addition to an excellent print collection).

  39. You’ve talked about the importance of your immediate environment in your life at the beginning of the show. Any book suggestions about that?

  40. I’ve been listening to the random show since episode 5 or 6. Love the lose format.

    I want to send you down a bottle of something to enjoy during your next show. I live up in Sonoma County. Let me know the best way to get it to you is or if you’ll be up in the area. CHEERS!

  41. I love listening to you guys. You make me think. I am going vagabonding at the end of Sept 2015. I have worked in local government in Southern California for 15 years. My masters degree is in public administration. When I return from my year of travel I intend to work on tech that helps the public space. I feel very strongly that people like you should be looking at big picture ideas to help the public space. Please consider this in your investments. I have a big interest in water, as I studied that in grad school. 80 % of the water used in California is used by agriculture in a very wasteful manner of trench irrigation for some stupid crops like rice. Let’s fix that! We need the bright minds to look at infrastructure. You haven’t heard the last of me. Think, think, think! Have and amazing legacy. Love, Rebekky

  42. Anybody catch what backpack Kevin mentioned 3/4ish into the show? I’m in the market for a good pack, and thought “oh perfect!” But now I can’t find it.