Please enjoy this transcript of my interview with technologist, serial entrepreneur, world-class investor, self-experimenter, and all-around wild and crazy guy Kevin Rose (@KevinRose), who rejoins me for another episode of “The Random Show.” In this one, we explore crypto investing, NFT experiments, Dogecoin, Zen Buddhism, current workouts, sleep supplements, and much more.
Transcripts may contain a few typos. With some episodes lasting 2+ hours, it can be difficult to catch minor errors. Enjoy!
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This interview was transcribed by Rev.com.
DISCLAIMER FROM TIM FERRISS: I am not an investment adviser. Nor is Kevin Rose. All opinions are mine alone. Or his. There are risks involved in placing any investment in securities or in Bitcoin or in cryptocurrencies or in anything. None of the information presented herein is intended to form the basis of any offer or recommendation or have any regard to the investment objectives, financial situation, or needs of any specific person, and that includes you, my dear listener or reader. Everything you’re going to hear is for informational entertainment purposes only.
Tim Ferriss: Hello, boys and girls, ladies and germs. This is Kevin Rose. Welcome to the KevKev, TimTim Show, otherwise known as The Random Show. Kevin Rose, I have him here. How are you, sir?
Kevin Rose: Dude, you sound just like me. You said you’re Kevin Rose. I’m stoked, man. We’re back doing The Random Show again. This is going to be one that I hope I can make it through.
Tim Ferriss: If you make it to the end without vomiting onto the screen, we will consider it at least a success, and we require, I think, some context for people listening. Got a text from you about 45 minutes ago asking if we might be able to reschedule. What are the reasons for that? Not to name any people’s names, but talk about compounds.
Kevin Rose: Okay, compounds. So you and I, we tend to — I mean, you’re the one that got me into this stuff. It’s really your fault.
Tim Ferriss: Dubious honor.
Kevin Rose: You got me into the whole scene of trying out these different compounds and seeing what happens on the body. Actually, you know what? It’s a really good thing. It’s a good story because I am going to hopefully live longer, not that I want to have my main — I don’t want to live forever. I’m not one of those people that is waiting for the flippening to happen,where AI takes over and we just live forever. I don’t care about that, but I want to have a good, long, healthy life for my little girls. So I pay close attention to all the different biomarkers. And one of the things that has always been an issue for me has been glucose disposal.
So you and I, we sit next to each other. You’re a, let’s just say, healthy person. I don’t know how your glucose levels are. I know you used to eat all those bear claws.
Tim Ferriss: It’s true.
Kevin Rose: You do love the bear claws.
Tim Ferriss: I do. I do.
Kevin Rose: The issue I have is if I sit down next to a healthy person, we both eat the exact same carbohydrate, if we’re wearing a continuous glucose monitor, I will spike higher, and the glucose will stay elevated in my blood longer than most people. That’s not good. You don’t want elevated glucose levels. It’s what they would call close to a pre-diabetic. So I just need to watch that stuff pretty carefully. Cardiovascular exercise is huge. High-Intensity Interval Training, Zone Two Training, all that stuff is really helpful, but there are also some compounds that you can take that help here.
So one of them is called Ozempic, which is this subcutaneous shot that you do. So you just shoot yourself anywhere you want. I just do it in my belly. And it lowers your glucose levels. It’s pretty amazing. It just works really well. And actually, some of the other benefits, it’s been shown in studies to be cardio-protective. So a physician that I work with actually prescribed it to me, and they said, “Hey, the one thing you may want to worry about, it can cause a little bit of nausea in some people.” So I’m like, “Okay.” They’re like, “You may want to ramp this up.” So this little syringe thing that it comes with, you can twist the little knob, and you can choose how much you want to inject. And I had a buddy that was doing it too, and he was like, “Okay, just do .25 for four weeks, and then you can work up to .5, and then eventually one milligram.” And I’m like, “Well, all the benefits…”
I should say, another benefit is the number one side effect is that people lose weight, as well. So you lose your beer gut. You get slimmer. You have better glucose control. I mean, it sounds like a win, win, win across the board until it comes down to the vomiting side of things.
Tim Ferriss: Except for the misery, the long and lean misery.
Kevin Rose: Yes. So I just kind of jumped a step. Yesterday, I had a couple beers, and I was like, “I should just go in because I just don’t want this to just go straight to my gut.”
Tim Ferriss: I love that it’s combined. I want to juxtapose here. This is worth highlighting: “After a few beers…”
Kevin Rose: Dude, first of all, I live in Portland, Oregon. Best breweries out here. It is very hard on me sometimes. There’s been a major heat wave here, Tim.
Tim Ferriss: Better stay hydrated with that alcohol.
Kevin Rose: Better stay hydrated. All jokes aside, thankfully we got through the heat wave, and the beers here are phenomenal. So it was Fourth of July, there was a lot of fun stuff happening. So basically, I just go into where the fridge is, and I pull it out of the fridge, and I inject myself, and I turn to .5 right away. I’m like, “I’m going to skip that .25 stuff. Let’s just jump into the benefits.” So I did it, and I felt fine. No big deal. Waited an hour, two hours, everything was fine. Went to bed, woke up at about four a.m. just wanting to vomit, just so bad. I haven’t laid on the ground of my bathroom in a very long time, maybe since I was doing my old Diggnation podcast 15 years ago or something. It was not good.
So I just kind of stayed in bed this morning. Called off a couple of my meetings, and you made a good suggestion on something that decreases nausea. I did that, and here we are. Good to go.
Tim Ferriss: Good ol’ Zofran. It helps. Also really important, side note, generally when people use something like ketamine in a clinic, they’ll give you Zofran beforehand. So it does work.
Kevin Rose: Oh, that’s right because ketamine causes a little bit of nausea as well at the higher doses, right?
Tim Ferriss: It can. It can. Yeah, very different purposes. As far as I know, ketamine will not give you a six pack, but —
Kevin Rose: Do you have glucose issues?
Tim Ferriss: Not really. Not really.
Kevin Rose: So you’re just like, you wake up in the morning, if you were to test yourself, you’re like 75, 80, 85 kind of thing?
Tim Ferriss: I would have to take a look. I mean, you have to keep in mind also, I haven’t worn a continuous glucose monitor since, check this out, 2008 or 2009.
Kevin Rose: Oh, man, you’re missing out.
Tim Ferriss: That was gen one Dexcom. You could not get it unless you were a type one diabetic, and the insertion procedure was terrible. And the device itself, you had to track the readout on a proprietary device. There was no integration with anything like a smartphone or an iPhone. And it was really helpful. I will say that most of the takeaways were pretty straightforward. It’s like when you eat a huge meal, even if it is “good food,” you really have this gigantic bullous of carbohydrate intake, even if it isn’t carbohydrate, really high protein, still spikes. So most of it was kind of self-evident. After a few weeks, I was like, I think I have a pretty good read on what my triggers are, including foods that I respond to, strangely. So I didn’t feel the need to wear it continuously past a few weeks.
Kevin Rose: Man, I remember when we went to the movies and you first had that thing on, and you had this — I mean, back then it was massive.
Tim Ferriss: It was huge.
Kevin Rose: It was massive, third-party, a mini tablet, whatever those little device was.
Tim Ferriss: It looked like a pager that was on —
Kevin Rose: Yeah, like a huge pager. I’m like, what are you doing? I’d never heard of those devices before.
Tim Ferriss: Long time ago.
Kevin Rose: And you’re right. The procedure back then was this massive needle. They wouldn’t even hide it. They didn’t put it behind any thick plastic so you wouldn’t see it. You would watch the needle go in and inject another little thing into you, and then you would have to mainly pull the needle out. It was so brutally invasive, and now, dude, you got to try the new ones. They’re amazing. You don’t even know it’s happening.
Tim Ferriss: I actually have a new one. I haven’t put it in yet.
Kevin Rose: Okay, cool.
Tim Ferriss: But the old Dexcom, if someone can think of a barbecue kind of two-tined pitchfork that you use to flip steaks or something, it kind of looked like a miniature version of that. It was two long prongs, kind of like needles that you’d have to push into your abdomen laterally.
Kevin Rose: And there was no spring loading. Today’s you push a button. It’s one press button, and you pull it off, and it’s done.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, none of that.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: One of many things I did for The 4-Hour Body. So are you planning on continuing to take — what is the name of the drug again?
Kevin Rose: Ozempic.
Tim Ferriss: How do you spell that?
Kevin Rose: Google Ozempic. O-Z-E-M-P-I-C, I believe.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. O-Z-E-M-P-I-C. We are not recommending that you use this, people.
Kevin Rose: Oh, I mean, you’d have to get a prescription from your doctor.
Tim Ferriss: Extremely clear.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. So here’s the deal. I feel that — we can say it because Attia has had a podcast on this compound and a couple other glucose controlling compounds.
Tim Ferriss: Are you taking metformin?
Kevin Rose: I am not taking metformin.
Tim Ferriss: Why not?
Kevin Rose: Well, the thing is, like you, Tim, we just have to listen to the scientists and what they’re saying and that, for me, is all the scientists and people, analysts that Attia trains or works with as a company, they look at that and say, yeah, there is a benefit for people with type two diabetes, but it’s not necessarily clear if you don’t have diabetes if there’s a health benefit there. So I think it’s too early.
Tim Ferriss: You’re talking about beer consumption. Just to talk about putting life in your years instead of years in your life side of the equation, can I share with you an alcoholic beverage that I’ve become quite fond of?
Kevin Rose: Yes!
Tim Ferriss: This is new for me. So here’s the problem, one problem that I have. I don’t drink beer. It just does not really affect my system very well. So what ends up happening is I’ll go out with someone like you, and you’ll be like, “Yeah, let’s have some beers.” And I’ll be like, “I don’t really have beer.” “Okay, what do you want?” “I’ll have a gin and soda,” and then we’re going kind of gin and soda for one beer, gin and soda for one beer, which ends in tears.
Kevin Rose: Oh, that’s the worst.
Tim Ferriss: It ends really, really poorly. Then I was approached by this company to sponsor the podcast, and I’d never heard of them, JuneShine. And JuneShine makes hard kombucha. Had not heard of them, but I was like, “Okay, well, I like kombucha.” I do, in fact, enjoy alcohol even though it’s fallen out of fashion, and people are like, “I only use ketamine. I’m so evolved.” I’m like, “Well, we should talk about that.”
Kevin Rose: Is that what people say? People say that?
Tim Ferriss: At parties. Yeah, people are starting to use —
Kevin Rose: Really? “I only use ketamine. I don’t use alcohol?”
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. That’s turned into this substitute for alcohol, which may or may not have a place, but suffice it to say, I don’t have ketamine in my house for a lot of reasons. We could get into those; it has a place. But I will have this right here, this JuneShine, and it comes in many different flavors.
Kevin Rose: Yeah! I’ve had it.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, it’s great. So I reached out to my team to ask them about the company, and one of them was like, “Oh, yeah. I know what you’re talking about. I have three boxes of it right next to me.” And I thought to myself, “Well, that tells me something,” because my team, I consider to have very good taste, not literally, although they might have that too.
And it’s great because it’s carbonated. It has, I believe, six percent alcohol by volume, and you can get a nice buzz from one because it’s highly carbonated and certainly also has alcohol, and I just don’t seem to have the hangover nor the losing arms race of doing gin and sodas per each other person’s beer. It’s been really nice. So this has turned into more of a recreational, light alcoholic beverage for me. I’m a huge fan.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, the one thing I was curious about was how much sugar. I always see these types of beverages at the store, these hard kombuchas or the hard seltzers, all that stuff. I hadn’t tried that White Claw before, but I tried it for the first time. Have you tried the White Claw?
Tim Ferriss: The White Claw. I haven’t tried the White Claw. It’s like The Facebook. The White Claw. I haven’t, but how did you feel after that?
Kevin Rose: It’s not that good. It’s not that good. I get why — I don’t know. I feel like when we were growing up, what was the hot thing? The wine coolers. It’s essentially kind of like a wine cooler type style drink.
Tim Ferriss: Zimas. Wasn’t it Zima?
Kevin Rose: Oh, my gosh. That’s the first alcohol I ever got drunk off of, Zima. It’s so funny. But yeah, 3.6 grams of sugar. That’s not so bad. I’m looking at their site right now.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. It’s allowed me to socially drink alcohol without just crucifying my brain cells. I’ve really enjoyed it. You want to see a bad decision? I can share a bad decision with you.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: Okay, bad decision is this mug I’m going to show you. This is a mug that I bought some time ago as a gift for my girlfriend, and as context, just so people don’t lose their minds completely, my girlfriend will often text me various things like, “Calm down, sugar tits.” She calls me sugar tits for reasons that are unclear to me, but sometimes she’ll call me sugar tits. So I thought it would be very funny when I was walking through this random store, and I saw some people chuckling at a mug. So I bought this mug. I’m going to show it to you first. Can you see what this says?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, it says “Calm your tits.”
Tim Ferriss: It says “Calm your tits,” and it has two little dots in the O and the U of “your,” so you can imagine that. And then, lo and behold, we end up reuniting because we were traveling separately, and in between the time that I bought this and had put it aside for her in a place where I knew she would find it, the day before we were to meet up, we got into this huge fight. So then the next day, I somewhat forget about this gift —
Kevin Rose: She thought you put that out there?
Tim Ferriss: Well, I did put it out there, but it was two weeks earlier when everything was groovy. So then she pulled it out, and she’s like, “‘Calm your tits.’ Hmm. Thank you, babe.” And I was like, “Uh-oh. Uh-oh. I’m in trouble. I’m getting pulled into the deep water. Oh, I did this to myself.”
Kevin Rose: I feel like she would find that funny under normal circumstances.
Tim Ferriss: Under normal circumstances, she would’ve found it hilarious. But the fact that we had a heightened, let’s call it a heated — a passionate — discussion within 24 hours that had not yet been fully resolved led to “Calm your tits” not being as funny as I had hoped.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, that’s fair.
Tim Ferriss: So good decision, bad decision. What else do we have on the roster?
Kevin Rose: Oh, man lots of stuff to talk about.
Tim Ferriss: We got a lot.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I mean, one of the things, we did put out a little tweet asking for people’s questions. Lots of questions around blockchain, NFTs, all that crazy stuff. We can save that for later, and we can stay on the health front. Do you want to do that, or do you want to go into some of the blockchain stuff? Up to you.
Tim Ferriss: Since I will be mostly just staring at you with a blank expression once we get to all the technical details of crypto and blockchain, I’d say let’s stick with health for a little bit more.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. So I’m curious, actually looking at the video now. We’re going to put this video out, or no? Be video as well?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, why not?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, so you got a little device up above your door frame behind you. Yeah, that little guy right there. So one of the questions that I had for you, actually, we’re not as young as we used to be. For me, flexibility has been such an important thing to focus on, and flexibility with supporting muscles so that when you do get flexible, you’re not just like a blob. And I’m curious, I saw that machine hanging up behind you, is that for flexibility? What do you do? What’s your focus these days on the training side? As you’re getting older, are you incorporating more around the, not longevity, but more around just less mass and more practical, old people stretching? What are you doing?
Tim Ferriss: Watching a lot of Richard Simmons videos.
Kevin Rose: Exactly.
Tim Ferriss: So for people who can’t see this, there is a pull up bar within the door jambs behind me. So the design is such that as you pull down on it, the physics of the engineering cause it to sort of buckle outwards without damaging the inside of the door frame. So it’s a cool design. It’s a really elegant design. You can find them on Amazon. And I use that for hanging and really just decompressing or compressing. depending on how you look at it. My back, scapula, and also just relieving my lower back and hip flexors from sitting too long a period of time. My priorities from a training perspective right now, I would say, I can just lay it out pretty simply, would be conventional weight training once or twice a week, probably no more than that. It’s really to maintain muscle mass, perhaps build a bit of muscle mass and also to make it a little easier to maintain healthy glucose levels.
So if you are increasing your muscular mass, particularly if you’re doing these workouts prior to a meal, your glucose disposal is just going to be improved, GLUT4 transporters and so on will simply be more effective at doing their job. So let’s say once or twice a week. On top of that, right now, my activities are kind of seasonal these days, and they’re seasonal in part because I really want to identify types of exercise that not only I enjoy but that I can do with my girlfriend. And that’s actually a byproduct of a conversation at one point with an incredible trainer, performance coach, and all around hilarious guy named Kelly Starrett, who’s a beast. I think when he turned 40, he celebrated by running the Quad Dipsea, which is an ultra marathon. By the way, he weighs like 220, 230 pounds. He’s extremely muscular.
Kevin Rose: Crazy.
Tim Ferriss: Doing a standing back flip and cleaning and jerking 350 pounds. Something like that. That’s how he celebrated his 40th birthday, just to give you an idea of who this guy is.
Kevin Rose: That’s a party.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, it’s a party. And great guy. The Ready State, you can look him up, Kelly Starrett. He was telling me about how he has prioritized activities with his wife over everything else. He’s like, “Once you have kids, you’ve got a family, you’ve got business demands. Anything that you choose outside of that is pulling you away from time with your wife or your family.” So he’s really tried to prioritize that. Before I have kids, I’m hoping to develop some of those habits. For instance, rock climbing is something that I’m doing more and more and absolutely love, basically everything that involves pulling, you’re going to check the box. And I really, really enjoy. It’s very cognitively challenging, too. I mean, it’s like putting together an upside down Tetris.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. They literally call them problems. If you’re bouldering, they’re called problems because you have to sit there and spend 15 minutes thinking about what you’re going to do before you even attempt it.
Tim Ferriss: Exactly. Exactly. I really enjoy that. So we’ll go to the climbing gym two or three times a week. Usually, the lifting will happen after the climbing in the same gym. Kettlebell swings, once or twice a week. I’m going to get around to answering your macro question. These are all mostly strength and muscle mass-focused, but the climbing does help with mobility. So I would say that my focus, more than focusing on flexibility, which invokes this image of passive stretching, laying on the ground with your legs split and reaching forward and just kind of hanging out there for 60 seconds, 90 seconds.
Kevin Rose: That Van Damme moment.
Tim Ferriss: Van Damme.
Kevin Rose: Everybody wants to do the Van Damme, though.
Tim Ferriss: Everybody wants to do the Van Damme. This is true. However, where I have had what people would consider the greatest flexibility gains and also just the most practical transfer of seeming more limber, it’s been through weighted mobility. So AcroYoga, for instance, involves a lot of pressing, handstand work, inversion, a lot of pressing. And in the process of doing something like AcroYoga for the legs and the hips, or rock climbing for less of the upper body but more the hips in the way that you rotate to improve your reach and so on, has been really, really helpful. There’s something called Jefferson curls that you can do and must do very safely. I describe how to do it via someone named Coach Sommer who is the former Men’s National Team coach, how to do something called a Jefferson curl, which is effectively a slow, rounded back, stiff leg deadlift, and you’re using very light weights, but you kind of roll down almost as you would do in a yoga class, vertebra by vertebra. And when you get more comfortable under weight in these end ranges of movement, then your body effectively says, “Oh, okay. Now that we’ve developed some strength in this end range, we can extend the end range.”
Kevin Rose: Interesting. So it opens up naturally a little bit once you’ve got that support structure there.
Tim Ferriss: Exactly, and it relates to the golgi tendon reflex and all sorts of things. But when I am trying to develop flexibility, my question is usually how do I actually develop strength at my current limitation? And that’s also part of the reason why something called PNF is very effective for stretching, which is a more active sort of contract and release based form of stretching.
Kevin Rose: What is PNF? What does that stand for?
Tim Ferriss: Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation, I believe. It’s been a few decades since I’ve thought of it. But PNF, usually, I shouldn’t say usually, but it very often involves partner stretching where someone would take, for instance, your leg extended. You’d be laying on your back, one leg is extended above you. They would push it forward until you reach the end range of your hamstring. You would then push against them for, say, seven seconds, and then relax. And then they would increase the stretch and you would go a bit further. Then you’d repeat that.
Kevin Rose: Is this what you see NBA players before they’re about to go into a game, you see them kind of laying on their back and they have a trainer come in, and they’re pushing the leg in. There’s always a trainer kind of supporting the leg and pushing it in. They’re pushing against it. Is that the same type of stretching or is that different?
Tim Ferriss: Good question. I would suspect it’s different just because PNF can be taxing, and you would spread it out much like you would spread out weight training.
Kevin Rose: Gotcha.
Tim Ferriss: So you wouldn’t, as far as I know, you wouldn’t do PNF every day, for instance. You would do PNF a few times a week. So my focus right now is, this is going to sound kind of funny because it’s so simplistic, but just feeling good. Because there are times when I’ve been huge. I mean, I weigh 170 pounds right now. I’ve been 220 pounds and not fat, I mean, huge, but did I feel comfortable walking around? No. I couldn’t turn my head. I was like a turtle. I had to rotate at the feet. I mean, it was ridiculous. So being comfortable, I’m doing a lot of weighted hiking also. So I’d say mobility, meaning strengthen the end ranges, strength training, and then rucksacking, which I love doing when you have access to hiking trails, which you do in Oregon, certainly.
Kevin Rose: Is that what that one backpack we talked about a long time ago, you use this weighted backpack you take with you?
Tim Ferriss: It is, yeah. GORUCK. So GORUCK is the brand I use. There are many other brands. You can get vests. Personally don’t love the vests. If you’re going to run with these things, which I am never going to do, then I think the vests probably make more sense, but I prefer to use the weighted backpacks, and I have a 20-pound, a 35-pound, and a 45-pound. And then you can add different things to that, depending. It is a lot harder than people might think. And what you don’t want to do is what I did in San Francisco the very first time I got a weighted vest. I was like, well, at the time I was really big. “I can squat X number of pounds for Y number of reps. No problem. I’m just going to put on a 60-pound weight vest.” And then I very, very stupidly just started walking with no plan. I was like, “Well, I’ll just walk, and when I start getting tired, I’ll turn around.”
And I kept walking. And I got to the point where it hurt so much that I had to take it off. I was like, well, how do I get this home? I was like two miles away. So I had to leave the weight vest on a sidewalk. I was like, “If anybody steals this, they deserve it.” If somebody’s going to steal a 60-pound weight vest, good for them because clearly they have more endurance than I do. So then I had to walk back, do the walk of shame back to my house without this vest, and then get a car and go pick it up. But very big on the rucking, very, very big. And honestly, these days also, and this might sound like a cop-out, but for a long time, my maxim was, as far as resistance training goes, “Train to failure.”
One set, train to failure. There are many, many, many ways to build strength. I’m not saying that’s the one and only way. Some people get very dogmatic about these things. It’s just for bang for the buck per minute of workout time, that’s a great approach. However, as I have gotten a little bit older and I’ve been looking at things like time outside, time in nature, sun exposure, I’m not trying to optimize to get it under 20 minutes or under 30 minutes. I actually enjoy the process of doing it. So those are a few of the ways that I’m thinking about this.
Kevin Rose: Let me ask you a couple questions there I’m curious about. So granted, this information is a bit dated, but I was climbing a lot in my youth and did quite a bit of indoor and outdoor. And one of the people that I trained with was a semi-pro climber that would tell me a couple things. One, every ounce of muscle he considered to be a potential negative in that it’s weight that can pull you off the wall. Because in his mind, it’s dense weight and you want to be as lean as possible. And then the second piece was that he was a big fan of low weight, high rep. So I mean, the guy could do 100 pull ups in a row. It was just insane, right? I’m curious — is that the pup?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, that’s Molly going crazy. She doesn’t like the idea of 100 pull ups, apparently.
Kevin Rose: I’m curious, though, what is your style? If you’re not going for mass, and you’re going for lean strength, it’s not about gaining. You’re not eating really high protein then? Or what are you doing there?
Tim Ferriss: Well, there are also many, many, many different ways to train, and I don’t think I have particular insight when it comes to climbing, although I have asked around. I’ve taken lessons and have thought about it. My short answer is I’m doing some high rep work, like the kettlebell swings are generally going to be higher repetition, and I’m using a 53-pound and then maybe a 72-pound kettlebell doing two and one-handed swings. You get a lot out of that exercise. Then when I’m doing other types of exercises like inversion training where I’m doing handstand work where I’m really developing actually a lot of finger strength and shoulder extension, kind of bringing your shoulders to your ears if your hands were extended over your head, for instance, as well as some of the training for bouldering specifically. It’s super short duration.
So you could view that almost as you would view powerlifting. I’m trying to avoid a burn generally speaking in those types of scenarios, and I’m looking to build kind of neurally based strength, better recruitment of motor units, and things like that. So I’m combining the two, but certainly, I agree with your friend 100 percent. The more weight you’ve got to haul up that wall, the harder you’re going to have to work. It’s like cycling. Cyclists do not want to have large upper bodies. It’s just drag. That’s all it is. For me right now, I am perfectly happy to be smaller and strong and working on things like climbing. There’s no need for me to be large. And a lot of people don’t want to be muscularly large, but it’s hard to find anyone who wants to be weak. I think everybody would like to be strong, and you can develop incredible relative strength and really develop yourself as a strength athlete while adding minimal body mass, even as a male, you can do that.
Kevin Rose: I got to say, man, the biggest change for me going into my 40s that has been absolutely fantastic — well, let me just stop for a second. Jump back, I’ve got a three-year-old and a two-year-old. When Zelda started getting a decent size, and when you have a little toddler running at you at full speed, and they want you to catch them, especially when it’s not straight on, it’s kind of at that angle, and you do one of these one-arm touchdown football catches with one hand, you’re doing that with a 25-pound little toddler or whatever, I literally have thrown my back out five times to where I am on the ground and cannot move, and I had to crawl to my bed and lay there for like a day and a half.
Tim Ferriss: That sounds terrible.
Kevin Rose: Dude, I never knew that back pain — because you know when you’re a kid, you’re jumping off walls, you’re doing all kinds of crazy shit. I was jumping off of my house onto a trampoline.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, for sure.
Kevin Rose: And then you get older, and you realize things just start breaking, and back pain is a real thing. I mean, I know you’ve had some back issues in the past. It is no joke, and I needed to fix it. So I started doing Pilates twice a week, and I stuck with it. It’s been about six months now, maybe five months, and I haven’t had a single issue. I have not had a single issue since developing that core. It is crazy, and I can toss the little kids around as much or more than I could back then. It’s just insane to me because I was always like you. Well, I would always go to the gym and be like, “Okay, biceps, triceps, chest, back, out.” Or shoulders, too. Same workout every single time, and you look in the mirror, you’re like, “Yeah, I look pretty good.” But then it’s like, none of that —
Tim Ferriss: Until your toddler takes you down.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, exactly.
Tim Ferriss: Do you do in person or do you do virtual?
Kevin Rose: Over Zoom. Yeah, she’s amazing.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, yeah. Don’t mention her name because then she’ll get the hug of death, but I want a referral after we finish because I have been, and this is where a lot of our listeners will probably be like, “Oh, my God. They’ve totally lost it.” But Pilates, really technical Pilates, is not easy.
Kevin Rose: That’s right.
Tim Ferriss: I have never felt better than when I am doing a combination, if I look back at when I have felt the strongest, the fastest, the most limber, it’s when I was doing a combination of Olympic weightlifting, Pilates, and AcroYoga. I’ve felt so limber and simultaneously strong at all of these crazy end ranges, and the Pilates with a technical trainer is incredibly, incredibly beneficial and there’s a lot of carryover in the same way that gymnastics strength training a la Coach Sommer, S-O-M-M-E-R, has a lot of carry over. Despite the connotations that people might have associated with that word Pilates, and there’s a lot of ridiculous, ridiculous stuff also, done technically, it is really hard. I’ll give you an example.
I remember last summer, I was doing Pilates over Zoom, and a friend of mine was visiting who is a former international level competitor in kickboxing. I mean, he went to the world championships multiple times and was also a high level athlete in a number of other sports. He’s a fit guy, had decades of competition. We got halfway through this Pilates class, and he was, I’m thinking, some sort of side plank bridge doing stuff with his obliques, and he just collapsed, and he’s like, “Jesus Christ! This is embarrassing. I don’t know what’s happening.” It was great. It is not easy.
Kevin Rose: No.
Tim Ferriss: So I’m definitely a proponent, strong proponent.
Kevin Rose: You appreciate all those little small muscles that you never really pay attention to, and it just — it is such a little — a good teacher will get in there and really help you work all those little tiny stabilizing muscles. Yeah, it’s just fantastic. Anyway, anyone out there who’s having back issues, highly recommend.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, check it out. I think it’s easy for people who lift weight in some fashion to be heavily biased against body weight or calisthenics type exercises, and it’s very easy for people who do bodyweight calisthenic type exercises including something like rock climbing to sort of glance a stance at people who are lifting weights. I think they are very, very complementary, but man, I have seen some gigantic bodybuilders and powerlifters do a yoga class and just end up on the floor because it is a different exercise.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: I do think that they complement each other very, very well.
All right, I say with a sigh. Blockchain?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, will Tim ever make his own NFT?
Tim Ferriss: I would like your advice here because I’m fascinated by NFTs. I have tracked them very closely, although I stopped following it quite as closely, maybe a month or two ago. I do find the technology very interesting. Conceptually, I think there are many, many, many, many, many applications of NFTs well outside of, say, artwork. And I’ve also made some investments in OpenSea, for instance, which I think there was a question on Twitter also about picks and shovels and so one that I think OpenSea, not to narrowly put it into that category, but I do think that they’re in a very good position to establish themselves as a dominant player regardless of what types of standards might be developed, for instance.
All of that said, great interest. So why the hell have I not done it? I’ve not done it in part because there has been this mad dash and money grab related to NFTs, and I don’t want to be perceived, nor do I maybe subconsciously even want to be driven by trying to capitalize on a hugely speculative bubble where the goal is not to enjoy the artwork, the goal is to resell the artwork for more. And that’s fine. It’s fine that a market exists; that’s true in a lot of traditional art, as well, or I would say less digital, NFT-type art. So I would love to create an NFT just to learn more about the process, to mint my own NFT and to go through with all of it. Maybe more than one NFT. I would be curious to know how you would think about that if you were in my shoes, or in your own shoes for that matter, but in my shoes, because I’m giving you my confessional here.
Kevin Rose: I mean, I think that, with NFTs, you’re right. It is a mad dash by a lot of people, a lot of celebrities entering the space, and they are quick to attach their name to a project. Oftentimes, they’re not even the ones doing the artwork, which is also just kind of crazy to me. So you’ll have A-list celebrity come in, say, “I’m releasing an NFT. I did a partnership with this person.” It’s like this beautifully rendered 3D animated thing, and you’re like, “Yeah, they actually never touched the computer, did they?” They’re just associating their name with it.
Tim Ferriss: Which also happens in more traditional art. If anyone hasn’t seen The Price of Everything, I think. I think it might be The Price of Anything. Price of Everything, though, I believe, or The Price of Anything. It’s a documentary that goes into some of this.
Kevin Rose: I have to watch that. That sounds awesome.
Tim Ferriss: You’ll love it. You’ll love it.
Kevin Rose: So basically, yes. There is some of that. But at the same time, though, you have some really legitimate kind of emerging artists that are using NFTs as this new medium. I have collector friends that are not treating it like, “Let’s just grab it and flip,” but they’re going to be holding onto it for many, many decades. So there’s a combination of both that are happening. For someone in your position, you’re right. There’s the risk that you run is that you launch the TimTim NFT, and it’s like, “Oh, great. Tim’s making half a million dollars off selling this NFT, or whatever it ends up going for. He just did it for the money grab.”
So I think, if anything, man, you don’t need the money. Just do it for charity.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. I would donate it all. But let’s take that as an example though. 500k, what the hell would I sell for 500k?
Kevin Rose: Well, you’re a good artist.
Tim Ferriss: With the understanding that a lot of things have sold for — I mean, there was Beeple sold one piece, this collage, for $69 million. So he is an incredible artist, first, I should say. The guy is a machine and also virtuous in what he does.
Kevin Rose: And also insanely funny. Have you had Beeple on your show yet, or no?
Tim Ferriss: No, no I haven’t.
Kevin Rose: The guy is just a riot. He’s amazing.
Tim Ferriss: And good for him because, well, people can look up his story, but I mean, created every day for, what, 5,000 days straight, something like that?
Kevin Rose: Was clearly not doing it for the money when he got started.
Tim Ferriss: I could not be happier that people like him are doing well in this environment.
Kevin Rose: Here’s the deal —
Tim Ferriss: Yes, I have some graphic art ability. I could do something that was graphically inclined.
Kevin Rose: You basically have a few different avenues to explore. One, I love putting it underneath the charity, 100 percent proceeds go to charity. Fantastic, boom. You check that box. No one’s going to complain. The second thing is what do you do? Do you take existing media that you have? So maybe it’s a portion of one of your episodes. Maybe it’s something that you said one time that has resonated with a lot of people that is you want to kind of memorialize in an audio clip with cover art of your podcast. You can do anything you want.
Tim Ferriss: TimTim TalkTalk episode one.
Kevin Rose: Exactly. I better get some royalties on that bitch. I interviewed you. So yeah, definitely split the royalties with whoever else is on the show. But the other thing is, you are an artist. I’ve seen some of your stuff. You can do some amazing things. Or you could get super artsy. You can mash a body part on a piece of paper and scan it in. You could do something like that. You’d have hardcore fans.
Tim Ferriss: I could get all Art Basel. Tape a banana on a wall, smash a body part against it, sell it for a few mil.
Kevin Rose: There you go.
Tim Ferriss: Oh, man. I mean, a lot of people don’t know this probably, but I wanted to be a comic book penciler for probably 10 years. So I spent a lot of time looking at graphic art, was an illustrator for a period of time. So I suppose I could do that.
Kevin Rose: Listen, I love Gary V. I love him. He’s a good friend of ours. You’ve seen his art out there. He’s put out some NFTs. Dude, I’ve seen your art, too. I would say that you have the skills to put out your own NFTs. If Gary can do it, you can do it, brother. Seriously.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. And I’m grateful to people who are experimenting and pioneering and trying all these various things in this space because not everything is going to work. Certain things will work, and I feel like, also, it’s really, really hard to perhaps look at it through this lens, but with NFTs, yes, there are going to be some amazing things. There is also going to be a lot of noise, but it’s kind of like tech companies in ’99 or 2000s. Yes, someone could say all of those companies were garbage, but amidst all the noise, you had the Googles and the Amazons. I don’t know if it was in ’99 or 2000 or shortly thereafter, but it was in the same window. Those are world changers, those are history changers in a lot of ways.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, the thing is, it’s just a new canvas type. I don’t see it as — there’s a shit ton of — how many craft fairs have you been to where you go down, it’s like, “Oh, the Sunday craft fair,” and you go in, and you’re like, “Oh, my God. People are painting on canvas.” You’re like, “I would never buy that.” So that’s happening in the world of NFTs, right? Anyone with Photoshop and export and save as a PNG file can create an NFT. So anyone and everyone can participate, and I think that’s a good thing, and there will be some amazing kind of cream that rises to the top. We’re already starting to see it. There’s a handful of names out there that are NFT kind of native that are starting to gain a lot of momentum and serious collectors and followings. XCOPY’s a great example of an artist that puts out these crazy, almost seizure-inducing, flashing NFTs.
No, they’re insane. But he’s been doing it since day one, and now some of his one of ones are selling for over a million dollars at Christie’s. They’re going on some of the major auction houses, and there’s a handful of those folks that are doing some really unique things in this space. So it’s not all crap, I guess is what I’m trying to say. I guess Art Blocks is another one, too, to check out on the generative side. To answer your question about how do you sift through all the crap, I don’t know if you had that question, but I will answer it.
Tim Ferriss: Sure, I’ll let you create my questions for me.
Kevin Rose: Exactly. Essentially, Art Blocks, they have this editorial kind of board of other artists that then kind of vote in who gets accepted and put on the platform. So the curated side is only the people that meet that bar. And I think we’re going to see more of that.
Tim Ferriss: There’s a lot of that in the curated marketplaces.
Kevin Rose: Right, exactly.
Tim Ferriss: What is the story with the artwork on your Twittah?
Kevin Rose: Oh, my Twittah?
Tim Ferriss: Woo, man, that JuneShine’s going to my head.
Kevin Rose: Are you drinking right now? Are you really drinking? I thought you were just holding up the can.
Tim Ferriss: No, no, no. I just skolled one. Yeah, yeah, no, I’m good.
Kevin Rose: That’s amazing.
Tim Ferriss: What is this artwork on your Twitter profile?
Kevin Rose: So what you’re seeing right there is —
Tim Ferriss: Looks like a bunch of pills.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, that’s a squiggly. So this is crazy. Essentially — well, it’s funny we’re talking about Art Blocks. So that piece of art right there is the very first project to launch on Art Blocks, and it is this little squiggly, and it looks very simple, like a little tiny snake, a multi-colored snake. And essentially, what Art Blocks is, it’s a generative art platform.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, you should define what generative is for folks.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, let’s define that. So basically, if you think about traditional art, it’s always an artist, they sit down, they do something, the mint it, the paint it on canvas, whatever it may be, and the artwork is “done”. And then that is then sold. Generative art is essentially an artist that comes in and says, “I’m going to write an algorithm that is a piece of math that will define the basic parameters of a piece of art, but I’m going to introduce some randomness to it, and that randomness is going to be created by the end user. So when you click to mint a piece of generative art, you are then putting that time code, that kind of time stamp of randomness into the algorithm. And then that algorithm spits out your unique piece of art.
So you have no idea what you’re going to get until it actually arrives in your wallet. So what you’re seeing there, that little squiggly, is something I minted. I didn’t know what it was going to be, and some of them have more rare attributes than others, different colors, different thicknesses, all these, and people collect them because they love the kind of luck of the draw in what you’re going to get. And they love the output because sometimes the output is even more interesting than what the original artist could have ever contemplated when writing that initial algorithm. So it’s just a new — I think it is a really interesting new form of art that can be captured and helped by the blockchain because generative art has been around for a long time.
People have been doing computer generative art, and they would always, you could go to showrooms, and they would have computer screens or monitors up showing off this stuff. And it was always a computer-science-y thing over the last 20 years, but there was never a way to capture that and save it. I mean, you could save it as a file, but then blockchain actually provided a way to say, “Okay, the output is now captured and saved in the blockchain. It is a unique asset that could then be transferred and traded.” So it’s actually, essentially a new art form.
Tim Ferriss: We can give you title to this unique digital asset.
Kevin Rose: Exactly. So this is kind of a new form that is only possible or enabled by the blockchain, which I think is really fun. So that’s why it’s getting a lot of traction. I’ll give you a sense of how quickly this market is growing. So Art Blocks, two months ago, did around two million in secondary sales of all of their works of art. This month, sorry, not this month, last month because we’re just getting into July now, last month they did over nine million in secondary sales.
Tim Ferriss: Wow.
Kevin Rose: So it’s really taking off. I think it’s third. NBA Top Shots, CryptoPunks, and I think Art Blocks is the third platform. They jump around, but it’s around that.
Tim Ferriss: Say that one more time.
Kevin Rose: NBA Top Shots, like the NBA collectibles.
Tim Ferriss: That’s number one.
Kevin Rose: It depends on the month because sometimes CryptoPunks or some other project will appear that is massive and blows up. But CryptoPunks is the OG, original kind of, not generative art, but it was the original kind of randomly created, I guess you could kind of consider it generative in some way, but the random output was captured with all these different attributes.
Tim Ferriss: People can check it out at larvalabs.com, and LarvaLabs is amazing. I mean, they do all sorts of fascinating stuff.
Kevin Rose: Really cool stuff. And do you know that Jay-Z set his Twitter bio to a CryptoPunk a couple weeks ago?
Tim Ferriss: Did not know that. Wow. Let me take a look at that. That’s a big deal.
Kevin Rose: That’s a big deal.
Tim Ferriss: Huh. Wow. Go, Jay-Z. It’s one way to add some value to the market you’re participating in.
Kevin Rose: I feel that it’s silly for people to say this is just all hype. And there is a lot of that out there. They’re like, “Oh, this is just going to go away.” It’s funny if you look at historically, when these new mediums come out, what happens and what people say, I actually did a bit of research in all of this, and I don’t know if you knew this, but back when canvas was first introduced, before that was largely cathedral walls and mostly on wooden planks — oh, you still there, Tim? I lost you.
Tim Ferriss: Well, that was fucking crazy. My house got hit by lightning, and the whole show came to a grinding halt.
Kevin Rose: Was it your house that got hit by lightning or not?
Tim Ferriss: It’s unclear. It’s unclear, but there was a massive thunderstorm and lightning and thunder all around this remote house at an undisclosed location. And I’m in the middle of fucking nowhere, for context. And everything just went out and I was like, “Oh, yeah. This is why you have a generator.” This is why you have generators in places like Austin, where I was the only house on my street with power during the snowpocalypse. It’s incredible. We’ll come back to Jay-Z and the CryptoPunks in a second, but it’s just incredible how fragile the infrastructure around us actually is.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I mean, I have the same thing. I lost power for seven days in Portland during this last winter storm. We had an ice storm and it took everything out.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. It’s wild. It’s wild. And I do worry about, or think a good amount about attacks on the power grid, cyberattacks on the power grid. And there’s actually a book that I highly suggest people check out called Lights Out, subtitle, A Cyberattack, a Nation Unprepared, Surviving the Aftermath by Ted Koppel. And it will scare the shit out of you.
Kevin Rose: I feel like these types of things just make one more paranoid.
Tim Ferriss: You’ve heard the expression, “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you,” which isn’t intended to be a justification for building spider holes in the back of your house and going really above and beyond the call of duty to ridiculous lengths, to prep in any sense, but having some basic provisions and basic backup plans in case of disaster, I think it’s pretty smart. I mean, most of us have fire extinguishers. We hope never to use them, but we recognize that having one for $100 or less, $20, is worth the downside protection. Similarly, wearing seat belts, when’s the last time you had a head on collision? Not recently, probably, but we all wear seat belts because it’s relatively easy to do that and mitigate high levels of downside. I think generators fall in that category. I think backup water falls in that category.
And it’s just a very present reminder for me of just how, if — we saw it during, or personally, I saw it during Hurricane Sandy when I was working on a chapter related to disaster preparedness in The 4-Hour Chef, there’s an extensive section on that, which seems to not match at all with anything related to cooking or chefs. But in fact, it does relate. It was kind of too long-winded to explain, but I was going back and forth with my editor at the time. And they were like, “Look, Tim. I’m into prepping. And even for me, this seems ridiculous.” And then, what happened, Hurricane Sandy hit and everything was totaled and people in New York were going without power. And I just think it’s a good — it’s a pop quiz from the universe in a lightweight way. When your power goes out in this way, it’s like, “All right, how much water do you have? How much ability do you have to charge your devices without access to the power grid?” Just super basic stuff, right?
So, I was thinking, okay. We were going to record this because we were texting back and forth. But as soon as the power went out, what happened? All the cell towers were overwhelmed. So my bars went from three to one immediately. And I was like, well, you suggest that we could record via phone, have the conversation and just record locally in QuickTime, which is what we were going to do. But that also, you have to think out the tertiary effects of something like that. And —
Kevin Rose: Sure. Up until a certain point where you’re just like, “This is overkill.” That’s the problem I have is, where do you draw the line?
Tim Ferriss: Well, do you have backup water at home?
Kevin Rose: I mean, I have —
Tim Ferriss: Do you have a week of water for your family?
Kevin Rose: No, I don’t have a week.
Tim Ferriss: It’s a few hundred bucks, man. You should definitely do that.
Kevin Rose: Well, here’s the deal. Do I need a week of water backup?
Tim Ferriss: Well, I’ll give you an example. So in Austin, Texas, there’ve been multiple boil warnings where there are high levels of rain, some type of flooding. The municipal water treatment facilities become overwhelmed and they issue a boil warning. So you can drink the water as long as you boil it.
Kevin Rose: I have a HEPA — not HEPA, but I have the equivalent of that on the water side that does 99.99 percent of viruses and bacteria. So I have the crazy, over-the-top water sanitation coming into the house.
Tim Ferriss: So you can just take your kids’ diapers and recycle them —
Kevin Rose: It doesn’t matter.
Tim Ferriss: — and there’s your drinking water.
Kevin Rose: I can just pee in the thing, it just works.
Tim Ferriss: So I just view these things. I’m like, “Why not have a few hundred bucks of distilled water?”
Kevin Rose: I have basically, I would say, probably about four or five days worth of water. And so —
Tim Ferriss: Just for you. Your family can fend for themselves.
Kevin Rose: Well, I can get in a car and drive someplace where there’s water. I don’t think like —
Tim Ferriss: No. Well, that’s the thing though, is I can — in Austin, it was like within 24 hours, all water at every grocery store was gone. So it just raises interesting questions for me because then you’re like, “Okay. Well, if that happens, what are people going to do? They’re going to think about driving outside the limits of Austin. Okay? So then what? And then, what? And then, what?” But, I don’t think I’m that crazy about it.
Kevin Rose: I don’t think that’s crazy, no.
Tim Ferriss: I’m not walking around downtown in a ghillie suit or something. It’s like, I —
Kevin Rose: Do you have a gas mask?
Tim Ferriss: I do not have a gas mask. I had one in San Francisco and I don’t have one. Do you have a gas mask?
Kevin Rose: I do not. Do you have any type of full body virus protection suit?
Tim Ferriss: Like a hazmat suit?
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: I do not. Do you?
Kevin Rose: So you’re not that bad! Yeah, I’ve got a couple of those. No, I’m just kidding. I don’t!
Tim Ferriss: “My kids wear them from 9:00–5:00. It’s pretty standard in the Rose household.” No, I don’t have those, in part because right now I’m in a very rural environment. I’m in the middle of nowhere. But you realize quickly also without the amenities of a city center, how dependent you are on things that are easy to take for granted like power or telecommunications. And if a tree goes down and lands on the lines, you’re just out of luck until it gets fixed.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I’m on the waitlist for one of those Tesla Powerwalls.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, those are cool.
Kevin Rose: They’re all backordered.
Tim Ferriss: Exactly. Right? And then what? Then, the 0.1 percent of poop in your water is going to kill you.
Kevin Rose: Something has to get you, man.
Tim Ferriss: “We drank it all taking all these life extension drugs, and then the poopy water’s going to get you!”
Kevin Rose: Yeah, exactly.
Tim Ferriss: All right. So Jay-Z. I looked it up while I was futzing around and messing around. And for those who haven’t seen it, Mr. Carter @sc, it’s actually surprisingly hard to find on Twitter despite that it has three million followers and zero following, but Jay-Z does in fact have a CryptoPunk as his profile pic, is that the right term to use?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. That’s right.
Tim Ferriss: That’s wild to me. When did that happen?
Kevin Rose: A couple of weeks back. Two, three weeks ago.
Tim Ferriss: Wow.
Kevin Rose: It’s a big deal. It’s a big validation.
Tim Ferriss: It’s a big deal. Big validation, also. I’m sure he owns one or 20 of those that he just three x-ed his investment, probably. Or does that not translate? What types of things affect the pricing dynamics for the CryptoPunks? And people can look at this if they go to larvalabs.com and then go to projects and click on CryptoPunks. You can look at the top sales. These things have been covered everywhere. And like you said, they’re the OGs, the kind of first edition. They’re like the Model Ts of NFTs. So you can look at largest sales. So right now, to give people an idea, and when you look at these, people are going to just end up gaping, jaws falling to the floor, looking at these things and wondering why on Earth an alien with a pipe in his mouth would be worth 7.57 million —
Kevin Rose: That’s outdated.
Tim Ferriss: Dollars. Outdated?
Kevin Rose: Oh, yeah. There’s been an alien sale now at Sotheby’s for 13 million.
Tim Ferriss: Wow. That’s crazy. I see. So off platform —
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I mean, these are 20 by 20 pixel little things, too. These are not massive images. So they just happen to be the first.
Tim Ferriss: Just imagine playing Spy Hunter, or one of these Lode Runner, one of these really old games and the graphics associated with that, that’s basically what you’re looking at. Okay. So that’s outdated. So I see. And I know these transactions have taken place off of the platform of Larva Labs?
Kevin Rose: That’s right.
Tim Ferriss: I got it. So this is not an accurate reflection at all of the top sales.
Kevin Rose: Right, because the top sales are now going off to Sotheby’s and Christie’s, and the traditional auction houses are stepping in and saying, “Actually, we consider NFTs to be real art. We’re going to offer them to our collectors, which — “
Tim Ferriss: Surprise, surprise.
Kevin Rose: As you can imagine. Exactly. Surprise, surprise. Turns out they also charge a 20 percent commission on every sale.
Tim Ferriss: Very reasonable, 20 percent commission.
Kevin Rose: Suddenly, they’re art. But no, it’s cool. It’s cool that they embrace this and they put their stamp of approval. They’ve also done that with a handful of other projects now, some other really top artists in the NFT space. So it is —
Tim Ferriss: Seems to be really on top of it. I mean, they were kind of a curve with the NFTs, for sure. I mean, they’re really able to capture a lot of that market very quickly at the high end, so I have to give them credit for that. So it looks like now maybe you can explain to people, because I know you have the explanation, but we’re looking at the largest sales at larvalabs.com/cryptopunks. And you’ve got two aliens. So 7.57 million and 7.58 million, respectively. Then, you’ve got four gorillas, then an alien, then a something I can’t even identify. I don’t even know —
Kevin Rose: They’re apes, by the way.
Tim Ferriss: Thank you. All right. We’ve got four apes and alien number eight just looks like a pediatric cancer patient. I don’t know what this — I have no idea what that is. Then, a bunch of aliens, not aliens. This is what I get for having too many hard kombuchas on my Random Show.
Kevin Rose: So I’m looking at the —
Tim Ferriss: Looking at the top 12.
Kevin Rose: Top. Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: All right. So what is number eight?
Kevin Rose: What is number eight?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah.
Kevin Rose: Number eight is —
Tim Ferriss: Number 6487.
Kevin Rose: So it just looks like a plain person, right?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah.
Kevin Rose: And the reason why that one is so valuable is because it has zero attributes. So there was nothing applied to it. So if you sort by attributes, there’s only, I think, seven or eight that actually have zero or something like that. So —
Tim Ferriss: Got it. Got it.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, just looks like a bald person.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. It’ll blow people’s minds to look at this and some of the transactions that are going on. So have all of the highest price transactions left this platform and moved more to the auction houses and so on?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, that’s right. Any time someone has one of these aliens now, they know it’s going to fetch double digit millions of dollars. And so they want to obviously get as many collectors bidding as possible. And what better way to bring in the old money into the game than to go with Christie’s or Sotheby’s and pull from that collector base? So that’s been the approach.
Tim Ferriss: Wild, so wild. It strikes me as significant. Maybe I’m overweighting it that Jay-Z has, as his profile pic, a CryptoPunk. Am I overstating that? I mean, that is really pretty on the nose, right? It’s not subtle.
Kevin Rose: I think it also speaks to kind of what’s going on behind the scenes. I mean, Jay-Z has a music company called Tidal, which is a big streaming provider on the music side. And they recently sold that to Square, which Jack Dorsey is CEO and founder of, and also obviously CEO of Twitter. Square is now, I believe, the number two largest purchaser of Bitcoin because people use Square Cash app to buy Bitcoin. As you can imagine, there’s been a lot of talk around how artists can potentially monetize songs using NFTs or other works of art using NFTs and Jack is in the middle of all that.
So it would not surprise me that the Square Cash app eventually turns into a way to showcase and kind of purchase and trade NFTS. There’s been some rumors now that Twitter is going to jump into the NFT game in some way. Jack famously auctioned off his first tweet for millions of dollars and turned it into an NFT.
Tim Ferriss: That’s cool. That’s cool.
Kevin Rose: Jay-Z is in the mix of all of this. So I’m sure he’s kind of learning what’s going on. And obviously you have to come back to the original project, which defined the NFT standard, which is CryptoPunks.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. So wild. What do you foresee as developments in the crypto or blockchain space? Or what are you watching closely?
Kevin Rose: Well, I think it’s funny because people get so caught up in these kind of bull and bear markets and watching these coins and saying like, “Oh, it’s crazy. It’s down 20 percent. It’s up 20 percent.” And I think if you — I try not to get caught up in the weeds there. It just zoom out even further because I think once you do that, the lines start to smooth out a bit and you understand that we’re in the very early kind of first innings of this entire rewriting of the financial stack. And so that’s probably the reason why I created the podcast to cover these things, is because there’s just so much going on right now. We need to bring the average consumer up to speed, so they know how to get into this stuff early before it’s on paypal.com, which is what Bitcoin and Ethereum are now.
Tim Ferriss: @modern_fi
Kevin Rose: Oh, my Twitter. Yeah, just modern.finance.
Tim Ferriss: Modern.finance. Modern Finance podcast, check it out on the webs, on the tweets, on the Twitters. It’s @modern_fi. All right. So you’re tracking that. You’re saying people get caught up in the microcycles.
Kevin Rose: That’s right. And they think it’s over.
Tim Ferriss: Fair weather speculators are going to get their faces ripped off and panic and then end up in a bad position.
Kevin Rose: It’s because they’re always buying at the highs and selling at the lows. You know what I mean? That’s a very common thing here. And I mean, Tim, you know this, man. You bought in right when everything crashed or just before it crashed and you got decimated for about four or three years.
Tim Ferriss: I did. Yes, I did. I came in in probably what was it? Mid 2017? Something like that. And promptly got my face ripped off.
Kevin Rose: But you were smart. You didn’t do anything. You just sat there.
Tim Ferriss: It’s just like there isn’t a compelling — based on the thesis that I had, I mean, which is a fancy way of saying what I hoped would happen in the future based on a couple of assumptions, there was no real reason to sell. Right? There are these really jagged, acute, short term moves. But if I actually had high conviction in the assumptions that led me to buy in the first place, it would be hypocritical and self-defeating to sell at that point. So I didn’t sell.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. And that was great because that ended up, it’s probably what, at least five X or more since all that happened?
Tim Ferriss: It’s up a bit. It’s up a bit. Yeah. I mean, it’s not up as much as it was, so I guess end of April, beginning May, but that’s okay. That’s okay. I mean, I think there are just these sort of hype and deflation cycles that you see in everything. And my biggest regrets in all of investing are actually the times that I sold prematurely. It’s not having invested in things, in other words, it’s not having missed opportunities to invest, it’s having not held the things I invested in for a longer period of time.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Shopify.
Tim Ferriss: Shopify was a huge one. I mean, that was my biggest misfire of all time was — but at the time that represented in absolute dollars a really significant win for me to try to get to the point where I didn’t have to be preoccupied with money. So it made sense. Look, the logic of selling that actually made sense. Do I regret it? Yes. A better example would be in 2008 when I had one stock that I put a bunch of a very double digit percentage of my net worth into. Can you guess what it was? And I put it in maybe in 2005.
Kevin Rose: WordPress?
Tim Ferriss: Nope. No. Although I am an advisor to WordPress or rather to Automattic and I’m a big fan, but —
Kevin Rose: I’m trying to think of what you would have bought back then. Maybe Amazon?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. I bought Amazon in 2005 or something like that. Maybe a little bit later. Taking a look right now, but —
Kevin Rose: So wait. You regret that? No, you don’t regret that. Obviously that’s —
Tim Ferriss: I regret selling it. I sold it.
Kevin Rose: Oh, you sold it three years later.
Tim Ferriss: I sold it when the subprime crisis landed and everything was just going through the floor. And boy, oh, boy. That was a mistake, should have held onto it. And I didn’t have clear rules for myself then. I had rules for buying, but not rules for holding or selling. I think people, at least, I’ve gotten myself into a lot of trouble by having rules for buying, which I sort of intuitively have a pretty good feeling for. I think you have an even better feeling for it, honestly. That’s absolutely one of your mutant powers. But then, how long to hold, when to sell, having rules for that in advance is something that I have historically not been as good at. And that has been a big problem. Certainly, with Amazon as sort of the textbook example of that, selling 2008 on a panic, and now it’s — who knows? Five or 10 X. I have no idea.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Oops.
Tim Ferriss: But, yes. All right. So coming back to blockchain or crypto. I mean, there’s sort of like the latter is contained within the former. What else are you paying close attention to? Of course, you’re observing the sort of mass behavior and misbehavior?
Kevin Rose: Right.
Tim Ferriss: What else are you watching?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I mean, we do a lot of crypto investing at True Ventures where I’m a part of.
Tim Ferriss: At True Ventures.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. So we’ve probably deployed I’d say 50 million or so, so far this year just in crypto-related deals. So that’s a pretty decent chunk of our fund. So it’s something that we track very closely. And I would say that the problem for the average consumer is that there’s just a lot of garbage in there. There’s just a lot of crap. So I would say that unless you’re educated and you are really deep in the space and you’re listening to all the podcasts and you’re reading all the different CoinDesk every morning. And if you’re at that level, then you can probably go out there and say, “I believe I see where the momentum is taking things.”
And so that’s kind of what I do as a profession. Now, I don’t recommend that people do that with their everyday just random pick of a doggy coin because all of the — there’s a lot of hype around these different meme coins that are appearing and those come down crashing as fast as they go up. So we have a problem similar to NFTs where anyone can spin up a new coin which is a few modifications to some of the open-source software that’s out there, make a meme around it, pump it, and then dump it, and people get burned. So —
Tim Ferriss: KevKevcoin.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. TimTim. Yeah. We could do —
Tim Ferriss: TimTim Tokens and KevKevcoin.
Kevin Rose: I mean, literally, within an hour, we could launch a new TimTim Token and it would be live. And then we could put some liquidity on Uniswap. We could get it trading. We could get people — I mean, that happens every single day. It’s really frustrating, but it is what it is. It’s an unregulated market. There’s a lot of stuff going on. It’s super exciting. There’s a lot of innovation happening, a lot of really high quality projects, but a lot of crap too, so buyer beware. So you just have to be careful on how you evaluate these different opportunities and definitely do not buy into the memes that are out there. It’s just — those are silly. And I’m not saying that one of them isn’t going to eventually — because there’s this fine line between community support that turns into something real and a meme, and something that’s being used to kind of pump and dump. And so —
Tim Ferriss: Would you consider Dogecoin a meme coin?
Kevin Rose: It started off as a meme coin and I think that there are attributes of it that I really like.
Tim Ferriss: Before the big E.M. started tweeting about the Doge.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, exactly. Elon started pumping up the Doge. Well, here’s the deal with Doge. I knew the founder really well. I had him on my podcast seven years ago or whatever it was. And we talked about Dogecoin and it was a joke initially. It was just a fun — he set the supply super high. Everybody was using it to tip using these little bots on Reddit. And I had literally millions and millions and millions of Dogecoin because they were worthless and I was tipping out 10,000 at a time here, 5,000 over here. It was just like — we all did it. It was just fun. And it was just kind of a way, a tip of the hat to someone —
Tim Ferriss: Monopoly money. It was Monopoly money.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Exactly. Monopoly money. So that has now evolved into — had a really strong community back then. It died down for a few years, and then the community came back and then Elon jumped on top of it. But it’s still lacking a few things, like the underlying developers that are working on it — now, this could be changing, and I’ve heard that they’re seriously considering refactoring the code base, but it was just a dead project that had minor bug fixes applied to it. So there was no real — outside of it being a, quote-unquote, meme coin and being hilarious and watching it go up in price, the technology stack that it was written on wasn’t being well — it was being maintained just so that it didn’t break. There was no innovation happening there.
And so, that is not the future of currency. The future currency that is going to really be a real, true utility has to have an active development community behind it, supporting it, and evolving it over time. And so that is happening on a handful of other projects, not so much on Doge. But there is so much interest in Doge now, and it is being listed on a bunch of the major exchanges again. I could see — it wouldn’t be crazy if you said, “Hey, Kevin. Guess what? Five years from now, they now have 5,000 active developers doing all these really funky, weird things on Doge.” I’d be like, “Well, that makes sense because they had the community drive a lot of that.” But outside of Doge, they call them the doggy coins. There are a bunch of other doggy-style coins that are just basically —
Tim Ferriss: Doggy style!
Kevin Rose: Well, I’m sorry, Tim. They’re similar doggy coins. I’m sorry that your mind went there.
Tim Ferriss: Oh, dude. Put that on me. Put that on me.
Kevin Rose: They’re doggy-themed coins that are literally just out there to get people excited. The prices go up, the whales sell, and it ends in tears.
Tim Ferriss: Ends in tears.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: All right. So Dogecoin, that’s not a primary position in the True Ventures portfolio.
Kevin Rose: No, it is not. Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: Okay. How do you — well, actually, a number of questions. So since we invoked the name of the great Elon, you spent some time with Elon, I have really not. But there are those who attribute the recent correction/crash to various tweets associated with Elon, including one related to the environmental costs of Bitcoin. Some think that is overstated, some think that is just something, it’s understated, a lot of controversy around it. Then there are those who would say, “Elon is a small, perhaps, contributing factor. But really it’s just an overall macro run from risk assets. So even though people attribute the correction, or some people do, to that type of coms from Elon, it’s not really accurate, and that it’s really a macro trend that happened to coincide at the same time.” What are your thoughts? Do you have any thoughts on any of that?
Kevin Rose: Well, Elon certainly carries a lot of weight. Or I think people, more recently — even though he’s tweeted a few times about cryptocurrency since all of this went down and it didn’t seem to really impact price as much as it did back when he first started doing it. So I would say he probably has a little bit less way and people really got pissed off when he did this. I think that, listen, we had a massive run-up over the last six months. So to see a sell-off or correction like that just totally makes sense to me. I don’t know that I pin it all on Elon. I think that certainly his comments and pulling it out of Tesla from accepting Bitcoin, it certainly sparked something that everyone was already thinking behind the scenes.
And that’s true. Bitcoin is a very dirty currency. I would say that I have read reports and I have talked to folks that are in the camp of — they will point out that the mining operations have really led to a lot of renewable energy. So a lot of these Bitcoin mines around the world are placed in places where renewable energy is there and in place and operating because it is the cheapest form of energy. Now, granted, there are other places where it’s running purely off of coal. So I don’t know that I fully buy that. So I think that I’d have to set that aside. I don’t think that the underpinnings of Bitcoin are going to be rewritten anytime soon. It is such a — the fact that Satoshi disappeared, it’s kind of like this, I know they have folks that are in charge, but it’s almost like, “Don’t touch it unless it’s really broken.”
It’s such a massive market cap and it does one thing really well, which is just store a value. So while there is a lot of little additional add-ons that are helping it scale, no one is thinking about completely rewriting it from the ground up in the way that, say, they’re doing on Ethereum. Ethereum is being rewritten right now to switch to proof of stake from proof of work. So out of the dirty CPU/GPU mining world into something that is insanely clean and more efficient, and that upgrade will take place sometime in the next year or so. So there are other cryptocurrencies that certainly realize that this is an issue and they want to get away from the useless — well, I mean, it’s a very — you’re also, in some sense when you do this proof of work operations that require a lot of CPU and GPU and are very power intensive, that is how the security of the network is maintained. So they are useful in that sense. But I just think we have better, cleaner tech now that we can apply to the same problem.
Tim Ferriss: What are your hopes for Chia, if any? And could you describe what Chia is?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. So Chia is a cryptocurrency that was created by Bram Cohen, who’s the inventor of BitTorrent. We all remember BitTorrent from when we were pirating movies or whatever it may be. It was the first peer-to-peer, elegant way to swap large files.
Bram went on to create Chia. Chia is definitely, it’s one of our investments at True, so full disclosure there.
Tim Ferriss: Me too. I’m an investor.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. The reason why we backed Bram is because, I mean, there’s a handful of engineers that if they raise their hand and say, “I’m going to do something new.” You just realize the caliber —
Tim Ferriss: He’s an animal.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, just one of the top tier engineers in the world. So you always say yes to something like that.
So he’s come up with a way to do a proof of space and proof of time, a blockchain that uses hard drives for farming. So he calls it farming. And it essentially, part of the reason why I was attracted to it initially, is because everyone has additional hard drive capacity. And you can turn a normal computer into a farming rig that goes out and will actually plot and farm and do the same functions of a cryptocurrency, meaning providing space as a way to protect the network rather than just GPU and CPU.
And it is just so much more green. It uses like one 1000th of the amount of energy of say, like using a Bitcoin CPU or GPU, and potentially democratizes it in a much more broader way.
And so what I mean by that is that, if you were to compete and you were to mine Bitcoin today, you would have to go out and buy a very custom, kind of A6 custom processor rig, or a really fast GPU if you’re mining on Ethereum, and spend thousands and thousands of dollars to go out and participate in the network.
So you just can’t use an off-the-shelf computer anymore, the way you could when it first launched in its first year or so. So now, with something like Chia, and Ethereum’s moving this way as well with proof of stake, you don’t really need the hardware requirements. So you can go out and just use some extra hard drive space, join a pool, and then you could be mining or farming kind of instantly. So the number of active participants in the network goes up, which means it’s more decentralized, which means it’s better for overall security.
So rather than just it being controlled by several thousand, the hope is with something like Chia, you get hundreds of thousands of people participating in doing this farming. And so far it’s been working quite well. I mean, they’ve got a lot of people. They had a warning went out. Several big publications wrote warnings that hard drives were being sold out everywhere. So you couldn’t go to like an electronic store — like Best Buy was selling out of their top-end hard drives because people were using them for mining on Chia. And so there was going to be this massive hard drive shortage.
So Western Digital stock went up because of it. And it was just crazy.
Tim Ferriss: That’s wild.
Kevin Rose: It’s wild. It’s wild, but it’s yeah. I would say, just playing both sides of the coin, obviously I said I was a fan because we’re investors. But also, it’s early days for this. So I wouldn’t go out and say, “Hey, buy a bunch of Chia.” If anything, I would say, “Just fire up an extra hard drive that you have sitting around and play with it and see what you think.” None of this is investment advice, but —
Tim Ferriss: To be clear, there we go. We are not registered investment advisors or other professionals. This is for informational purposes only. Continue, please.
Kevin Rose: Yes. Yeah. So I mean, with all this stuff though, Tim, like when I walked you through some of that MetaMask stuff one time, it’s like the only way to learn this stuff and to get into it and understand what you’re buying rather than just blindly buying is to play. Put a hundred dollars in. Go lose a hundred dollars on something crazy that you didn’t understand, but by the end of it, you do. And so that’s where you learn. And I think it’s the most valuable piece of all of this.
Tim Ferriss: So in an ocean of options, and again, you and the other partners at True have significant informational advantage and many other advantages compared to anyone, almost anyone listening to this. So this is not intended to be advice. But just so I have a better understanding, how do you vet? How do you choose blockchain/crypto investments? Because there is so much out there. There’s this paradox of choice. How do you choose things at this point? Are there any particular checkboxes or criteria?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. A hundred percent. So the way that I think about it is that, first you have to say, “Where have we been, and where are we going?” And so when you start out the kind of, “Where have we been?” When these chains first launched, they had one utility. They were like a store of value and a way to send digital currency to and from one wallet to another. Right? That was Bitcoin for the first few years.
And now when you think about where we’re going, there are just a whole slew of different arenas that this blockchain technology has been applied to. So you have decentralized exchanges. You have the NFTs that we talked about and marketplaces around that, all of the Web 3 censorship-resistant communication protocols. You have insanely high performance protocols or blockchains like Solana and some of the others that are out there and that could do 50,000 transactions per second. And so what gets unlocked when you have that type of speed operating on a blockchain?
Then you have existing big, behemoth blockchains like Ethereum, and how are we going to scale Ethereum in the short term? So you talk about what they’re called layer two scaling solutions.
The entire financial stack is being rewritten from the ground up. So thinking about what is the future of checking and savings accounts? What does it mean to stream money to people in real time? How does that work?
And so there’s a world where a startup pitched this just recently, where they figured out a way to stream money to people in real time. And so what that means is, rather than going into work and like clocking in and waiting two weeks to get paid, you clock in and money hits your account every 25 to 30 seconds in real time as it’s being earned.
And so there’s just like this complete rethinking of the distribution of financial assets. So what once was, let me pull up Wells Fargo right now, but if you pull up like a big bank, and you say “Wells Fargo Wikipedia,” and you take a look at the head count that they have to employ to pull off a traditional — so they have 7,200 branches in 2021, 13,000 ATMs, and 268,000 employees for Wells Fargo. So think about what that payroll must look like, how much —
Tim Ferriss: A lot of mouths to feed.
Kevin Rose: A lot of mouths to feed. And that bloat that is in the financial system. And so what do you get in return? You have a checking and savings account. You get some FTSE insurance, which is nice. And you get absolutely nothing. You get no interest. I get that it’s nice that they handle fraud on the check side, and there’s a phone number to call, and all of that.
But all of that money that they’re taking your money and lending it out on your behalf behind the scenes, and their revenue for 2020 was $72.34 billion, for 2020. So that money now in a decentralized fashion on the blockchain, where now you have some of these people writing things like Aave, some of these lending platforms, or you have like a BlockFi that is partially centralized and partially decentralized.
You have these new banks and new financial institutions and these new protocols that are emerging that take just a handful of people to write code, manage, and operate. And then all of that wealth creation is being distributed back to the individual. So I’m excited for the future of finance, because I think that, for example, you and I have talked about BlockFi before. It is a company that is providing —
Tim Ferriss: You and I have talked quite a bit about it.
Kevin Rose: Yes. And and BlockFi, for example, Zac, I had the CEO on my show. We talk about what they’re really good at is these interest accounts that give people real insane interest at right now. I think it’s like 7.5 percent right now on stablecoins, which is just nuts. What are you going to get from a bank?
If you keep a hundred dollars in your BlockFi account — and I don’t mean this to be an ad for BlockFi. I’m not going to put any affiliate code anywhere in anything in Tim’s show notes or anything. But it’s essentially, they’re giving you seven percent on your money on these stablecoins, which are US dollar coins, which don’t change. You don’t have to worry about them going up or going down because they’re able to go out and pass that savings. They don’t have that massive overhead that a traditional bank would have. And they just pass it right back to the end consumer.
And so a lot of these platforms, whether it be Compound or Aave, or some of these platforms, you can go and bring your cryptocurrency in. You can lend it back to the platform and you’ll get paid interest back to your wallet, which is just awesome. It’s nice to see that finally going back to the consumers versus just being kept by the big banks.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. It’s super fascinating to me. And you introduced me to BlockFi and have since become an investor. And I don’t place a lot of bets in this space, but the idea, and who knows, at the end of the day, what the pie chart is going to look like. But the idea of a blockchain first banking or finance company is very interesting, right? It allows you to do certain things like offer this seven or 7.25 percent or whatever the APY is on accounts that otherwise don’t really exist.
Because as you said, there are all of these intermediate sort of cost centers, including head count, associated with traditional banking that are just simply removed when you shift to this type of technology.
Kevin Rose: Right.
Tim Ferriss: The ability to, say, borrow based on your cryptocurrency assets or anything that’s related, these are new frontiers in a lot of respects. And that’s part of what makes it super exciting.
So obviously both of us are fans of BlockFi and many other things. What are the risks that you foresee on the horizon? And I know this is a common question. I’m going to ask it because I think people will be interested in your answer. How much do you worry about regulatory overstep or shutdown? So we’ve seen what’s happened in China. Of course, China is not the United States. But how concerning for someone who invests a lot or for a firm that invested a lot in crypto and blockchain is the regulatory side of things?
Kevin Rose: Honestly, I’m very much looking forward to regulation. I think it’s going to be a great thing. The lack of clarity around how to treat certain types of assets in this world is what’s holding it back, I believe.
The big question to ask here is the one, like you hinted at with China, is: does the US wake up one day and say, “Actually, cryptocurrency is illegal; shut it all down?” And I just can’t see that being the case here. It’s too far entrenched into everything that we’re doing. Every major bank, whether they like it or not, is now embracing blockchain in some capacity. It’s a fantastic underlying technology. So it would just be odd to say, “We’re banning a certain type of technology.” I just can’t see that happening in the United States.
Tim Ferriss: Yep.
Kevin Rose: I hope that there’s more clarity because a lot of it is very confusing right now.
And to be fair, a lot of it’s being defined in real time. So we don’t know how to handle certain types of assets. There’s just weird things coming out of this. Like, I’ll give you an example. There’s a protocol called Alchemix that are these self-repaying loans. It sounds nuts. But in the world of DeFi —
Tim Ferriss: What does that mean?
Kevin Rose: It’s crazy. So basically what —
Tim Ferriss: I could use some of those self-repaying loans.
Kevin Rose: Well, basically what it does is it goes out and you come in and you take a certain amount of cryptocurrency. Let’s just say it’s $10,000. Right? And they take that entire principal and they go invest it into yield-generating protocols that are out there in this world of decentralized finance. And they instantly give you half of it back into straight, let’s just call it a stablecoin, like a US dollar stablecoin.
So you take $10,000, they give you $5,000 to go do whatever you want with. And because of the yield that they’re able to generate on the entire principal, they take all of the interest payments and pay it back into the loan so that it pays itself off automatically. And at the current rates, it’s a little over two years and the loan just automatically pays itself back.
So you’re receiving your interest payments up front, if that makes sense. But this is only something that would be possible in the world of DeFi, where you’re having smart contract work with smart contract and not in traditional lending. It just wouldn’t make sense because you’re taking all of the benefit and giving it back to the customer. And in traditional lending, when you have mouths to feed, those mentioned with the Wells Fargo example, they would never give you that full yield back. Right?
Tim Ferriss: They can’t do it, right. They can’t.
Kevin Rose: Right. Exactly. So but weird —
Tim Ferriss: They’re only making a mere $72 billion.
Kevin Rose: Right. Exactly. And the odd thing though, is like, these repayments are happening in near real time, back to paying down the loan in near real time. And so, talk about like all these little microtransactions that are occurring over that two years and change. Now, how do you treat those repayments? Who’s paying them? And where are they coming from? And what’s your cost basis? And you can imagine, it just makes you go cross-eyed. No one in the IRS is going to tell you how to do this. This has never been defined before. How do you even file something like that with the IRS to explain to them what you’re doing?
Tim Ferriss: Even handling basic crypto stuff right now with filings is very challenging.
Kevin Rose: Right.
Tim Ferriss: You can do it, but it’s very involved.
Kevin Rose: There’s some very sophisticated financial, just these new tools, these new types of code that is being deployed in these smart contracts. And we don’t really have a clean way to even report them, let alone understand how to, at what tax rate we should be charged. So I don’t know.
I’m excited for some more regulation to come into place. I think that, but you asked —
Tim Ferriss: Just to remove the uncertainty.
Kevin Rose: Exactly.
Tim Ferriss: So even if the rules are stringent and punitive in some respect, at least the rules will be clarified and defined.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I want to pay my taxes. I don’t want to go to jail. I just don’t know how quite to do it. Right?
Tim Ferriss: I wasn’t implying otherwise.
Kevin Rose: No, no, no. I’m just saying in the world of DeFi —
Tim Ferriss: Thou dost protest too much!
Kevin Rose: I’m so much in the world of DeFi, this is what people are running into, is they don’t know how to handle this stuff. So it’s a very exciting space. But it’s a very kind of bleeding edge, enter at your own risk kind of world.
To answer your question of what am I scared of? What are the risks that are out there? I think there’s a few. One is you, you mentioned the regulation side. That’s certainly one that is off there lingering in the background, which I’m not so much worried about what’s going to happen on the US. But I’m worried about what if another country bans it? Because that causes some instability in the markets when other countries ban it.
Tim Ferriss: Which would be the most impactful countries were they to ban crypto? Outside of China, are there any countries that stand out that one might not expect? So outside of the US, like who are the players who would really move the market?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, that’s a good question. I think China was the big one, to be honest. And now that that’s kind of over, obviously the European Union would be huge. Anything with the UK would be huge. But I just don’t see those markets cracking down. So there’s nothing out there that is the big, scary whale that we’re just waiting for that to happen. I don’t know of any other big countries.
If anything, we’re seeing countries now embracing cryptocurrency and making it an accepted form of tender. So that’s happening, which is just fantastic.
So, okay. Let’s put that regulation part aside. There’s two other pieces that I always think about. One is the meme coins, the shitty coins that rise to the top and people think because it’s the top 25 traded coin, they should buy it. That’s a huge risk. The second thing is that people don’t dollar cost average their way into the markets. So that means that they just buy a big chunk, oftentimes too much. And then they panic sell.
So dollar cost averaging is a very simple concept. You have a thousand dollars, let’s just say $1,200, that you want to invest, total, in a cryptocurrency. And you’re like, “Listen, my chunk, what I can afford for me is $1,200.” You take a hundred dollars and you do one buy the first of the first of every month for a year. And you dollar cost average your way in.
That way you’re never buying at the high, never buying at the low. You’re kind of getting that nice blend over 12 months. 12 months may seem like a long time. I personally would do something like that over like three to four months and just figure out what is that? Don’t look at the markets in terms of trying to time it. You just say, every, this is the day, second week of every month on every Monday or whatever it may be, whatever your day is. And then you go off and you make that buy.
And the third piece is that people run into, and this is something that comes up a lot, is that people take on too much risk. So it has to be something where if it drops by 75 percent, you will not sell. So it can’t be so meaningful that you’re freaking out and you do a panic sale. Because this is where the risk is. But also, with risk comes the reward, obviously.
So when you’re playing in these crazy waters, these shark-infested waters, there’s going to be some really bloody days. And if that’s the case, you have to just be able to sit there and take it and not panic sell. Because, you know, and you believe in your heart of hearts, that the future is digital currencies. And if that’s the case, the market is going to be bigger five years from now, 10 years from now, 20 years from now. And if that remains true, back to that, what is my original thesis around this market, then you’re going to be good in the long term, but you have to be able to sit there and close your eyes on those really horrific days. And they will come. There’ll be multiple.
Tim Ferriss: Lots and lots and lots. For me I’ve realized if I am not comfortable making an investment for at least three years, I just shouldn’t do it.
Kevin Rose: Right.
Tim Ferriss: Because I probably haven’t done sufficient homework to have strong conviction on my base assumptions that should underlie that type of decision. And if I’m not willing to hold for at least three years, you’re going to get punched in the face at least a few times over three years.
Kevin Rose: Yes.
Tim Ferriss: And if I’ve committed to that, and I’ve only allocated so much that I can afford to easily have sidelined, for that period of time and liquid, you’re going to end up panic selling. And just as I did with Amazon in 2008, which was a huge mistake, right? I’d taken too much, I put it into an excellent company, but I didn’t have rules for when I would sell or why I would sell. I only had my reasons for buying. But my reasons for buying are based on kind of present-tense evaluation, not looking at long-term trends.
So I didn’t have myself set up for success with that investment, which was a bummer. And I ended up selling and then buying back in, in early April of, I guess last year. Yeah, early April 2020. But man, oh man, it would’ve been a lot better to actually hold onto it for the entire period of time.
Kevin Rose: Here’s the crazy thing, Tim. I’m curious to get how you think about it these days. But the one thing that is a little bit different than what you said there around stocks versus crypto, is that the people that are the true believers will say, “If you really believe that the future of currency is digital, then there is nothing to sell.” Why would you —
Tim Ferriss: Totally, totally.
Kevin Rose: What would you sell into? Because you’re already holding the best form of that thing that you’re holding currency.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah.
Kevin Rose: You don’t sell into the US dollar. Why, when they’re just printing more US dollars? That would just be silly.
Tim Ferriss: Totally, totally. Right. So I don’t want to come out with, like, super strong opinions. But I’m generally not selling the primaries, right? Like the primaries being Bitcoin, Ethereum. I have not sold any Bitcoin or Ethereum in years. And I don’t have any plan to in the near future.
There are other things, I don’t think we should name them, but more speculative things that might, on paper, offer a market cap that just does not make sense compared to the utility and ubiquity of other things. In which case, okay. Maybe you take some of that off of the table. Because there’s just not an equally high degree of confidence in the durability over time of those things.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: Or you just can’t find a compelling logic to be like, “Why is this worth X percent of the total market cap of Bitcoin?”
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: Then I consider that. But I hear you. I mean, there are definitely, in the true believer camp, it’s like, “Look, if you actually believe A, B, and C what you’re saying, you should never sell.”
Never is a strong word, though. I would say given current information, given what we know currently, I don’t have any plans to sell BTC or Ethereum.
Kevin Rose: Right. So in my mind, what I think is, if I think about Amazon, of course, Amazon is going to continue to scale and be the leader in that space. If I believe the same, the digital cryptocurrency space, but I’m in a coin where I think to myself, “Gosh, I really see this emerging player that’s coming up that I really believe in as well,” then I might do a lateral move where I say, “Okay, well I have a lot of gains in this one particular cryptocurrency, but I also want to get a little exposure to this other one. I’m going to sell part of this and then move into another coin.” And that just diversifies my cryptocurrency basket a little bit more.
Now, one other piece is we talked about right-sizing the position that you’re holding so that you don’t freak out if there’s a big dip. At some point, because I believe this market will expand and continue to grow over the next couple of decades, that position, let’s just say you put in $10,000 over the next three months and that turns into a half a million dollars, at some point, you’re going to look at that holding and be like, “Wow, this is now meaningful. I am going to freak if it drops by 75 percent.”
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Totally.
Kevin Rose: And so what do you do then? So my playbook is — and I’m just speaking for myself, but what it is is: if cryptocurrency grows to the point where it is no longer, whatever your number is, 10 percent of your overall holdings, 20 percent, whatever you’re comfortable with. And all of a sudden, it’s 40 percent of your overall net worth, then my way of trimming is not to say, “Sell and grab some US dollars.” What I do is I say, “Let’s sell, but then diversify into stocks and bonds and more traditional assets.”
So more of the Wealthfront style, kind of fully diversified. That to me is more the boring, old school, hoping for seven percent a year, type of style investing. But I’m definitely not one of these people. You talk to Pomp or something, and he’ll be like, “Oh, I’m a hundred percent Bitcoin.” They’re like, “What stocks do you hold?” “Oh, no, no, no, just that. Just Bitcoin.” You’re like, “Wait, what? That’s a little aggressive.”
So I’m definitely a fan of having other assets as well. So it’s not just all about crypto.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, totally. And I should say also, I mean, seven percent sounds terrible. But if it’s a decent number to begin with and you don’t sell and rebuy and rack up all of these transaction fees and management fees and so on, you could do worse.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Totally.
Tim Ferriss: A lot of people go to zero trying to chase like 40 percent annual returns. And actually, I have a lot of sympathy for people who had the experience, their first experience investing in this last run-up with crypto, because they’re just ruined forever.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: In a way, I’m just like, “Oh, my God.” This is, I don’t want to say a non-recurring phenomenon, but it’s just like, if your baseline is set at hundreds of percentage per year, it will be very hard to convince you that it makes sense to invest in something with a reasonably predictable seven to 10 percent per year, let’s just say. And that’s a tough position psychologically for people to be in.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: You know?
Kevin Rose: Absolutely. The one hack I did want to share with the audience that I think is a really worthwhile one is, well I don’t want to — I’ll just say it.
I think that the mistake a lot of cryptocurrency holders are doing today is that they’re holding their cryptocurrency where they’re not earning anything for their cryptocurrency. So a lot of people will have a Robinhood account. I’m an investor in Robinhood. So I’m slamming them right now. And I’m sorry. I’m not an investor. We invested at Google Ventures and I hold some of their funds. So I don’t mean to talk bad about Robinhood. But they don’t give you any interest when you’re holding your crypto there. The same thing goes for Coinbase. Coinbase just now said, “If you have our stablecoin USDC, we’ll give you four percent.” But actually they do Ethereum 2 staking, which is nice. But outside of that, they’re not really giving you any interest if you hold Bitcoin there.
There are some places that you can go, that you can transfer your cryptocurrency to. PayPal doesn’t give you any interest, that you can earn interest on your crypto paid in crypto, so you’re paid in kind, so you’re getting more crypto as you’re sitting there holding it. So my strategy is that there’s two sites that I like: BlockFi, which we already mentioned. They give you interest on Ethereum, Bitcoin, a whole slew of other coins. And then Gemini is another really world-class exchange that gives you interest on just holding your crypto there. So every time I launch my wallet, I see that I have more crypto because every month I’m earning interest on it, and I just would hate for people to be letting their crypto sit there and not earn any type of interest. Now there are risks because they’re lending your crypto out on your behalf. That’s why, actually to plug my show again, I did an episode all around risk with the heads of risk of both of those organizations to talk about how they’re doing it behind the scenes. And after listening to that episode, I’m confident and comfortable in what they’re doing. I’ve been using BlockFi for years now and getting outrageous interest rates. It’s a great thing to do when you’re sitting on some crypto. Why not earn more?
Tim Ferriss: Hear, hear. What else should we talk about, KevKev?
Kevin Rose: So we covered crypto pretty well.
Tim Ferriss: Thank you for the we. I’ll take it.
Kevin Rose: It’s a fun world, man. You’re doing fine, Tim. Just keep holding your Bitcoin and Ethereum!
Tim Ferriss: Thank you. I’m just breathing while I listen. Yes, thank you. I’m doing great. Really great.
Kevin Rose: One thing I wanted to cover is a question came in from Twitter asking, I guess we can wrap it up unless you have more, but one of the ones that we have on the last on our list here is: the most recent thing you’ve added to your daily architecture. Any new rituals? I was really curious when that came in, because we haven’t talked about this in a while. What have you picked up both in COVID and then slowly coming out of COVID, anything new for you?
Tim Ferriss: So the first thing that comes to mind is anything and all things related to sleep is a perennial topic. But in the last, I would say month, I’ve had probably 10 days at least of the best sleep I’ve ever had. And a lot of that stemmed from a conversation I had with a neurobiologist from Stanford named Andrew Huberman, really interesting guy. And we talked quite a lot about sleep. He studies the visual system very intensely.
Kevin Rose: Was he on your podcast?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Yeah. He was.
Kevin Rose: Awesome. He was on Darya’s podcast too recently.
Tim Ferriss: He’s a smart guy. He’s a smart guy. And we spoke a lot about sleep. We spoke about testosterone and increasing testosterone. We talked about performance, the risks of increasing testosterone, different methods, et cetera. And in the sleep camp we, or I should say he, rather, told me about increasing fish oil, specifically EPA, to at least one gram per day. And I’ve been taking fish oil, but I had not been taking that quantity. I began taking fish oil and a number of other supplements, including magnesium beyond just magnesium threonate, which is very good for sleep. And on top of that, paying more attention to circadian and cyclical cues that he and I talked about. So I’ve been trying to ensure, as soon as I wake up, that I go outside and spend at least five minutes in the sun.
And I’ll do that by jumping rope and walking around with Molly, my dog, but to really ensure that to the extent possible, I don’t wake up and then brush my teeth and then check my phone and then check my calendar and sit inside dilly dallying, or even doing important work for an hour or two before getting outside exposure. I’ve really been trying to very consistently get sun, even if it’s cloudy outside. Just solar/sky exposure, as soon as I get up, and I’ve been having some of the best sleep of my life. It’s really, really, really remarkable.
Kevin Rose: What are you using to track your sleep?
Tim Ferriss: Right now, because I shifted locations recently. I mean, not full-time, but I’m outside of my usual home base. So I have an Oura Ring that is charging. I haven’t been wearing it. I do use Eight Sleep also on the bed, which is incredibly helpful.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. We love ours.
Tim Ferriss: Creating two zones and my girlfriend, if she could sleep inside a sauna at 90 plus degrees, she would probably do it. I really need to sleep at a surrounding temperature of 67 degrees or I have an incredibly hard time getting to sleep. So the Eight Sleep does provide some tracking. And I’ve found that Eight Sleep’s, I suppose, inference or extrapolation from what they can sense in the bed is pretty good even when they’re paying attention to HRV, certainly the number of times that you’re tossing and turning, getting up, et cetera, surprisingly accurate from what I can tell. I was very skeptical. I do use the Oura Ring. That’s going to be the primary for looking at sleep quality and HRV.
So those would be the two tools predominantly, but at the end of the day, even though I find these tools very useful, you know by 1:00 p.m. if you had a good night’s sleep or not, and you probably know as soon as you get up. So it’s a subjective feel as much as anything else. And I am a different person. If I get three or four nights of excellent sleep, I am a different human being. Qualitatively and probably quantitatively in a bunch of ways, I am just a different human being. So those are a few of the things that have changed.
Kevin Rose: Couple of questions.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah.
Kevin Rose: So when you have a bad night’s sleep and you look at your Oura data, what does that mean for you? Does that mean lack of REM sleep, lack of deep, or is there anything that jumps out?
Tim Ferriss: For me, it’s lack of deep sleep. It’s lack of restorative sleep. And I don’t know how deeply, pun intended, I should read into that, but my deep sleep is very easily compromised. It is very easily compromised, also, if I have more than two alcoholic drinks. Of course, not all alcoholic drinks are created equal, so six percent is very different from like tequila shots, but I’ve paid a lot of attention to that. And there is another reason why I was actually more than happy to have a drink or two this early, since we started recording at 3:00 p.m. my time, because if I drink a little bit earlier, this is coming out really off terribly because I’m not suggesting that people become day drinkers. But if I drink at, say, happy hour, like an early happy hour, which is not really my thing, but just for the sake of illustration, like at 4:00 or 5:00 p.m., my body is able, in a waking state, to seemingly metabolize a lot of that before I go to bed.
Kevin Rose: Right.
Tim Ferriss: And I consequently do not wake up with the rapid heartbeat.
Kevin Rose: That’s the worst, man.
Tim Ferriss: The alcohol night sweats? It’s the worst.
Kevin Rose: I hate that rapid heartbeat where you wake up and you just get that, like, you can just feel it going.
Tim Ferriss: It’s terrible.
Kevin Rose: And you’re like, “Ah, what do I do? I’m hot.”
Tim Ferriss: You can’t do anything.
Kevin Rose: It’s the worst.
Tim Ferriss: You can’t do anything. You just have a terrible night’s sleep. So having even an additional three hours to metabolize before going to bed makes a huge difference for me. So I’ve been paying attention to that as well. But almost all of my changes recently have been associated with improving sleep quality.
Kevin Rose: Can I ask you what manufacturer of omega-3s do you take?
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, I can tell you, let me grab it.
Kevin Rose: All right. Tim has left the room. Let’s see if this makes the edit or not. I’m betting it’s Carlson Wild Caught Omega-3s.
Tim Ferriss: Here we are.
Kevin Rose: You have another one.
Tim Ferriss: These are delicious. Don’t judge me, Kevin. This is not my usual, but in any case. All right. I’ve two here, this is a Nordic Naturals ProOmega 650 EPA/450 DHA. And that is right here, this guy, which I’ve been using. And then the second that I have is Thorne, that’s T-H-O-R-N-E Super EPA. And that’s this guy right here.
Those are what I ended up choosing. And the effect is really remarkable and it’s difficult, I would say it’s impossible, let me be clear. It’s impossible for me to say that my sleep quality improvements are entirely caused by this. I’m also spending more time outside. I’m doing rucksacking. I’m getting more exercise. I’m getting a lot more sun exposure. I’m in nature. My body tends to just down-regulate, it’s not the right word, but my nervous system downshifts a lot when I’m surrounded by nature.
Kevin Rose: It’s huge.
Tim Ferriss: So there are many factors and there are many environmental changes in my life that have taken place in the last few weeks. But I have spent a lot of time in nature at many other points and my sleep has not had this dramatic change. So it leads me to think that there are other causal factors. And this is the most obvious. This is the most obvious thing.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, that’s awesome. I’ve been taking a couple of grams of omega-3s for a while now. And I just find for me, I actually see the benefits in the joint side.
Tim Ferriss: Totally.
Kevin Rose: I just have less joint issues.
Tim Ferriss: I’ve noticed that actually in my feet —
Kevin Rose: It’s like the old man episode. I love that.
Tim Ferriss: This is the old man episode! But my family has a history of gout. So my family has gout on at least the maternal side. A sort of precursor indicator of that is often high uric acid levels. And I’ve been pretty loath to start another medication, which will be a maintenance medication forever in this case, would be allopurinol.
Kevin Rose: I too have been taking allopurinol for five years now.
Tim Ferriss: Even though it’s very, very well-tolerated, right? As far as drugs go.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: It’s very well tolerated. But I’m like, “Oh, God, I’m going to end up as that old guy with the pill case with 100 pills that I have to take every day.”
Kevin Rose: It’s too late, dude.
Tim Ferriss: I don’t take that many things right now. I’ve really tried to minimize it although compared to the normal people, I probably seem like a complete disaster. In any case, the EPA or perhaps it’s both including the DHA, the higher levels of fish oil consumption unexpectedly, I was stretching and I noticed, “Oh, wow, I don’t have that usual stiffness,” which I thought might be some type of degeneration in the joint. Although in x-rays it didn’t appear to be the case, the stiffness and pain that I feel in that big toe joint, which is very often where gout first presents, which I was very concerned about. I was like, “Oh, I have gout. Really, am I like some fat aristocrat from the 1700s in France? What is this? Really? How can I have gout?”
And some people think that’s primarily caused by, I think it’s purines in DNA and that’s associated with protein. And therefore people take by extension that to mean that animal protein should be decreased. It’s not quite as simple as that. There’s actually a chapter that I published on my blog, tim.blog, people can find it on gout and the understated culprit, which is fructose as found in high fructose corn syrup and in fruit to a lesser degree. So it’s not quite as simple as people might paint it to be. Nonetheless, what I noticed is like, “Holy shit,” that pain in my toe was 90 percent gone after a week of doing it. And I cannot think — because this has been consistent for years now that I’ve had this pain.
Kevin Rose: Oh, interesting.
Tim Ferriss: I mean, it’s been a static level of pain. And after a week or two, again, maybe it’s placebo, who knows, but I wasn’t anticipating this as an effect. So it’s hard for me to think that it’s expectation. So like, you know what? It’s hard for me to come up with many reasons not to do this. So I’m going to give it a go. If you take too much, more is not better. And I think you could probably cause intestinal bleeding or all sorts of problems if you were just to chew these like gummy bears or something. So word to the wise, talk to your doctor about things like this, but I’ve certainly found it beneficial. What about you, your daily architecture? It’s very kind of —
Kevin Rose: Open-ended kind of —
Tim Ferriss: Highfalutin way to put it, but yeah, your daily architecture.
Kevin Rose: The only thing I would say that I’ve really stuck with that — well, a lot of people would want to know about our sauna routines and if we’re still doing sauna, that was a hot topic.
Tim Ferriss: Hot topic! Doggy-style.
Kevin Rose: I got to tell you, man, sauna for me has been — it’s just the best. It’s the best money I’ve ever spent outside of having a nanny from time to time. Sauna is just so key. I just feel so much better. I mean, there’s all the health benefits and the studies. There’s more and more coming out all the time. I will say one thing, one pro tip, do not oil your sauna. So I oiled my sauna.
Tim Ferriss: What does that even mean?
Kevin Rose: So they have this sauna oil on Amazon. Like when the wood dries out, you’re supposed to put oil on it, you know? So I buy this sauna oil on Amazon, I oil it, and then it literally off gases like smoke, like smoky oil.
Tim Ferriss: Oh, that’s terrible.
Kevin Rose: Listen to this, dude. It’s been —
Tim Ferriss: Like a skillet on the stove top. That’s terrible.
Kevin Rose: Yes, yes. And so I was like, “Okay, this is crazy.” So I went in, I sanded it down, like, tried to get it all out. Scrubbed it with soap and shit, and then, dude, it’s still off gassing. So then I started wearing my N95 mask in there. And so Darya was like —
Tim Ferriss: This is why you need a gas mask: to use your own sauna.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Darya is like, “What are you doing?” She’s like, “I’m not going in that sauna again.” I’m like, “Listen, let me burn it out.” But I still need to get my sauna on, so I used my gas mask and then, dude, I go in there and my eyes, when I walk out after 20 minutes, my eyes are bloodshot because the smoke is hitting my eyes and my eyes were burning.
Tim Ferriss: It’s not the gummies?
Kevin Rose: No, it was not the gummies. It’s not your gummies that you handmake and send me.
Tim Ferriss: My gummies.
Kevin Rose: So I ripped out my entire sauna, had all the wood removed, and had to buy a new sauna.
Tim Ferriss: Oh, what a mess.
Kevin Rose: So that sucks. Anyway. So routine wise, architecture wise, it’s been one year, coming up on one year of meditation. And that my friend is the biggest game changer I’ve ever had is when I decided to take it seriously and not just do it like an app, but like really sit and do it really, like real practice.
Tim Ferriss: So what does real mean? This is an hour a day. What are we talking about?
Kevin Rose: You know what’s funny Tim, I never told you this.
Tim Ferriss: And it’s the Zen style? This is with your teacher, or in accordance with his instructions?
Kevin Rose: It’s Zen style. That’s right. So what’s funny, Tim, is one time, I don’t know if you ever remember, we were talking about meditation. This was probably six, seven years ago, and you said something to the effect of like, “I think that most people, they just close their eyes and think about things when they’re meditating.” It was almost like you didn’t believe it.
Tim Ferriss: I still think that’s true. I think there are benefits to meditating, but I think most people are just thinking about bullshit with their eyes closed.
Kevin Rose: I was going to ask you, have you ever found yourself in deep, if you have meditated where you’ve been — I mean, because you did the offsets you get really famous to talk about that.
Tim Ferriss: The Vipassana.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, pasta.
Tim Ferriss: A psychotic breakdown, yes.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Your breakdown.
Tim Ferriss: That was pretty deep. Having that full psychotic break I would say it’s pretty deep. Yes, I’ve had very, very deep experiences. Some of the best experiences I had were actually — I’m blanking on the style and the name currently.
Kevin Rose: Give me some hints.
Tim Ferriss: Naval would have the answer. I’ll tell you the general approach, and the general approach is having nothing to do. You actually sit there. You do not repeat a mantra, you do not pay attention to the breath. You just sit there, and this is going to sound paradoxical, but you actively try to do nothing. You just sit there. Doing this in a group environment for a period of time, did it with a small group. And this was one hour in the morning, one hour, let’s just call it 5:00 p.m., 8:00 a.m., and 5:00 p.m. And doing it in a group, I do think there is a dynamic that is gained, certainly a different dynamic that presents itself, in a group. I don’t have any explanation for this, but there are theories, certainly. Pet theories.
But doing it in a group two hours a day for a period of even a week produce some very, very, very, very deep states. And I would say in terms of kind of ROI in a short period of time, I found that very interesting. When I came back to so-called normal life, I did not sustain that twice daily cadence for very long. And I think in part, because I was doing it by myself or with my girlfriend and not in a group, having that accountability was very, very helpful. But I have experienced some very deep states in meditation.
Kevin Rose: Have you found those to be pleasant states, or like when you walked away, did you have a smile on your face? Did you feel like you felt —
Tim Ferriss: Very pleasant.
Kevin Rose: Cool.
Tim Ferriss: Very peaceful. Very pleasant and very at peace for sure. Oftentimes what I’ve noticed, this can be, for me, at least, facilitated by doing a very intense, but short sauna session for, say, 15 to 20 minutes and then sitting outside and sort of air cooling and meditating for 20 minutes.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. That’s nice. That’s just a great feeling.
Tim Ferriss: It’s incredible. Found that to be very consistent. So to answer someone’s question that you brought up, I still do sauna very, very regularly and view it as a key and simple lever that I’m able to pull for mental health. Whether it helps me physically or not, I don’t know. I mean maybe, sure. Heat shock proteins, all of that. Yeah. Okay. Maybe. I’m not going to know if it did anything until I’m dead. So jury’s out, but from just a day-to-day psycho-emotional and mental perspective, doing a sauna especially late afternoon, if I do it too close to bedtime it interferes with my sleep. But if I do it at 4:00 or 5:00, then it seems to help and also dramatically increase HRV the next day.
Kevin Rose: Oh, interesting.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Yeah. I’ve noticed that as have a couple of other people. But coming back to architecture and your meditation, so one year anniversary, congratulations. That is the anniversary of what? Maybe you can describe for us.
Kevin Rose: I mean, I’ve been like most people that have ever played around with meditation apps, I’d been dabbling and even help build one that is a free meditation app, but I just was dabbling. I was always dabbling. I was doing the 10, 15 minutes to maybe 20 minutes. Just those little sessions guided and they were fantastic. Very, very great, prescriptive meditation. You have something wrong, you’re feeling stress, fear of flying, whatever it is. Like there’s all these courses for you. You can take them. There’s not a lack of apps that offer this type of content. I think that the shift and the change was telling myself that this is a long road to practice to really train the brain. And Tim, you know this way better than I do, if you want to be really good at something, it can’t just be an afterthought, casual, “I’m going to make time for this — “
Tim Ferriss: When I feel like.
Kevin Rose: “When I feel like it.” Exactly. So I made that shift in my brain and said, “Okay, I believe there is something worth pursuing here that a dedicated, longer practice, longer duration, and a more serious discipline.” So for me, that was a form of Zen called Sanbo-Zen that I was —
Tim Ferriss: Sanbo.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Sanbo is like the offshoot. It’s more kind of a lay Zen.
Tim Ferriss: Have you spell it.
Kevin Rose: S-A-N-B-O.
Tim Ferriss: Sanbo Zen.
Kevin Rose: When I heard about this and was introduced to my teacher, Henry, got excited about it and really decided to dive in and say, “Okay, I’m going to read a few of the books that are out there on this type of Zen and then create a real practice that is 55 minutes of sitting a day.” And I would say I didn’t —
Tim Ferriss: How much is it?
Kevin Rose: 55 minutes?
Tim Ferriss: Why 55 minutes? I like fives.
Kevin Rose: You 25 minutes of your first sit, and then you do a five-minute walking meditation, and then another 25 minute sit.
Tim Ferriss: Cool.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: And for those wondering, so as I just looked it up, Sanbo Kyodan. Sanbo Kyodan is a lay Zen sect derived from both the Soto and the Rinzai traditions. Sanbo literally means three treasures. I wonder what the treasures are. San is like ichi, ni, san. San: three. Sanbo, bo is like [bǎozàng], like my darling, my treasure kind of thing. Sanbo is three treasures. And then kyo, well, we can get into the Japanese at that time, but yeah. Kyodan, religious organization or teaching organization. That’s cool. So 55 minutes. Do you know what the three treasures are by any chance?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. One treasure is the Sangha. So they, the group. The other one is the Dharma, the teachings. And the third one is escaping me right now. You can just type in three treasures. Three treasures apply to more than just Sanbo.
Tim Ferriss: Here we go. Wait a minute. Three jewels are the Buddha the fully — three jewels, three treasures so that you can translate it either way. At least in Japanese, the Buddha, the fully enlightened one. The Dharma, the teachings expounded by the Buddha, hence the term or phrase Dharma talks. Have you ever heard that? And the Sangha the monastic order of Buddhism that practice Dharmas, but that’s also colloquially thought it was the group that practices together. Roger that. So you’ve done 55 minutes a day for a year.
Kevin Rose: I will say that I have certainly missed a few days, but nothing crazy. Not like where I’m like, “Oh, I missed that entire week.” There’ll be a day or two where it just didn’t work out. There’s been also a handful of days that are on the 25-minute side versus doing the 55. But for the most part I’ve been really consistent.
Tim Ferriss: What is the practice? I know you mentioned it in brief already, but what does a session look like and feel like to you?
Kevin Rose: Well, it depends on where you are in your practice. When you’re first being instructed the teaching is essentially counting or just following the breath. So very, almost like Vipassana style just to get that base level of concentration honed. There’s a teaching where they talk about the Zen master that was sitting and the concentration was so intense that they’re sweating. You can see sweat on their brow because it is like a very active thing that is happening with the honed concentration.
Tim Ferriss: They hit you with a switch if you’re nodding off.
Kevin Rose: They still do that. If you would like to request it, you can go in the zendo and you can request that that happen. It’s not for pain, it’s for a jolt. It’s not like a beating practice, you know?
Tim Ferriss: “This is for you, not for me.”
Kevin Rose: Right. Exactly. So initially it’s just that initial counting and awareness. And then eventually if your teacher and you feel you’re ready for it, you take on a koan, which is one of these things to sit with, like a Zen kind of saying or word to sit with that is used as a, what’s the best way to put it, kind of like just a —
Tim Ferriss: Paradoxical cue, right?
Kevin Rose: Right.
Tim Ferriss: It’s something like that. Paradoxical anecdote or riddle used in Zen Buddhism to demonstrate the inadequacy of logical reasoning and to provoke enlightenment. That is the definition that comes up for me.
Kevin Rose: Yes.
Tim Ferriss: Koan.
Kevin Rose: So what you do is when you sit with that koan, eventually you will be able to answer it. And there are hundreds of them, and there are checking questions that are done with your instructor.
Tim Ferriss: Checking questions.
Kevin Rose: That’s right. So if you sit down with a Zen master and they ask you, probably the most famous one is the sound of one hand clapping.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Right.
Kevin Rose: You would then be able to answer that question through a series of checks, and eventually you can go through and answer all of them.
Tim Ferriss: So there’s a right and a wrong answer to something like that?
Kevin Rose: Yes. More or less. Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: All right, God damn, that’s stressful.
Kevin Rose: But I mean, you get it wrong a lot. So essentially like if you’re going to do one of these, they call them like a session where you go and do these multi-day retreats, you will go and you will sit. And then you have a one-on-one session with your Zen master in the evening when you’re wrapping up and they’ll sit you down and say, “What is the answer to this question?” Whatever you’re sitting with. Some people sit with — most common one is one called Mu and they’ll say, “What is Mu?” And then you can either say, “I don’t know,” and you can walk out and that’s fine. They ring the bell and the next person goes in, or you can try and answer it.
Tim Ferriss: And what is Mu? I mean, I’m not asking you to give the cheat sheet for people, but —
Kevin Rose: I don’t know the answer to that question.
Tim Ferriss: But broadly speaking, is Mu a character?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. There’s a Japanese character for it.
Tim Ferriss: Oh. It’s like mushin. Mushin is like no mind.
Kevin Rose: No. Not. Exactly. So basically where that came from is there was a very famous Zen teacher, Zen master named Joshu. And Joshu was asked by a monk one day, the monk came up to him and said, “In all earnestness, monk asked Joshu, ‘Does a dog have Buddha nature?’ And Joshu’s answer was just, ‘Mu.'” They will tell you that answer was coming from a non-dual world.
Tim Ferriss: It gets a little tricky.
Kevin Rose: Yeah, exactly. So what you do —
Tim Ferriss: I can give you a breather if you like? I’ve got some stuff, but yes. Continue.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. So you just basically sit with —
Tim Ferriss: Or not.
Kevin Rose: What are you talking about? What breather?
Tim Ferriss: I’m just saying if you want a moment to gather yourself because there’s some pretty esoteric shit. I can read what I found on the Sōtō, the checking questions?
Kevin Rose: You can give me the answers? No, no. What you’ve found?
Tim Ferriss: Read the answers like the —
Kevin Rose: Just ruin my entire practice.
Tim Ferriss: Like the mantras for Transcendental Meditation, where they’re just listed out by age.
Kevin Rose: That’s right.
Tim Ferriss: I could do that, and just to really make everyone cry. I say that as someone who paid for the training and still uses TM. I still use it. So teachers may probe students about their koan practice using sassho, or checking questions to validate their satori understanding. While I would debate the translation of satori there, or kensho, which is a really cool word. Seeing the nature, seeing the phenomenon. For the mu koan and the clapping hand koan, there are 20 to a hundred checking questions, depending on the teaching lineage. The checking questions serve to deepen the insight of the student, but also to test his or her understanding. That’s wild that there would be questions. I’m just trying to imagine. I’m not asking you to spill the beans on the secret cult that you’ve joined, but the questions that would be related to something, like “What is the hand of one hand clapping?”
Kevin Rose: So it seems like it’s unanswerable by definition because it’s intended to show the inadequacy of logic.
Tim Ferriss: That’s right.
Kevin Rose: And so the best way it’s been described to me and this wasn’t by my Zen teacher, but I’ve heard it described elsewhere is the answers are going to be something that you will only understand if you’ve had that kensho awakening type moment, or you would only be able to provide. So your answers, in the same way that when the monk asked, “Does a dog have Buddha nature?” And Joshu’s response was, “Mu,” that would make no sense, make no sense at all. So your answers are also going to make no sense in this plane, if that makes sense, but your teacher will understand them because they will be listening from another plane. Does that make sense?
Tim Ferriss: Kind of, sort of. I mean, oh, right here. Let me give you an analogy. It’s going to be terrible. You’re going to love it. So it’s like if you’re trying to explain ejaculation to someone who’s never ejaculated and you’re like, “It’s kind of like a sneeze in your balls.” And they’re like, “What?” And they’re never going to understand it.
Kevin Rose: This is a bad one, Tim.
Tim Ferriss: If they’ve had the experience of ejaculating and then there’s no explanation needed and you can give a “mu” type answer, and they’re like, “Oh, yeah. I hear you. Mu. It’s so mu. That stuff is so mu.”
Kevin Rose: I don’t know that that’s how I would describe it, but I like it.
Tim Ferriss: I mean, you’re welcome.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. You’re practically a Zen master, Tim.
Tim Ferriss: This is three hard kombuchas later. I think I’m enlightened, I think.
Kevin Rose: That’s great. No, but that’s the gist of it. Even if we read the answers —
Tim Ferriss: It can’t be a reading-based, logic-based exam. It has to be something that you have a felt experience of through this thing that has given the label of kensho.
Kevin Rose: And that’s why there’s so many checking questions.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Kensho.
Kevin Rose: Because they’ll be checking from a bunch of different angles whether or not you’ve actually felt or had the experience versus just being just a read response.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. That’s super interesting. I think the — honestly, I mean even though in some respects are very different, there are similarities, mainly in the psychedelic in the psychedelic ecosystem, in the realm of whether it’s psychotherapy assisted by different psychedelic compounds or otherwise, either there could be a place for these types of checking questions. And actually in some of the indigenous traditions, there are — I don’t want to call them fact checking questions, but there are standards and experiences that are thought to be representative of different levels of awareness within the context of say, an ayahuasca experience. So they’re not that dissimilar.
They’re actually very similar and I should correct something I said earlier, because I was thinking of a different character, kensho, the sho is different than the — there are a lot of homonyms in Japanese, a lot of things that have the same pronunciation. So the sho in kensho is a different character than I had envisioned. Its nature, or essence, is the sho. Ken is to see. Like, kengaku, if you want to go to, say, Judo school and observe, but not participate, you would ask if you could do kengaku. Gaku is to study, so it’d be visual studying. That’s super cool, man. I’m so glad that you’re digging deep into all this. That’s really — it’s great to see you stick with something for a year.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Seriously. It’s going to be a long journey, man, but now’s the age to get started.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Why do you think you’ve stuck with this? So there’s a — ah, God, what is the expression? Since we’re on — we, I say, just like “we” explained cryptocurrency and blockchain stuff earlier, which was basically you talking. I’m on this speaking in tongues, Japanese kick right now, but there’s this expression, I think it’s [Japanese saying] I think that’s what it is. Somebody who’s a native speaker of Japanese could correct me, but there’s an expression in Japanese, which is like, “He or she gets hot quickly and gets cold quickly,” meaning they pick up habits and routines and various things, and then they stick with them for very short periods of time. They get really excited about something and then they just drop it. Which I think you and I both do, although I think you take it to a whole new level. So why do you think you’ve stuck with this for a year in the way that you have? What has changed in you? Or what is it about this particular thing that has grabbed you?
Kevin Rose: Well, I would say that I told myself that I knew that the upfront work of just being able to sit for an hour and be comfortable with it was going to take some time. And to spiel the still the mind to the point where you can just get comfortable, and it not feel like just this crazy effort that you’re like, “Why the hell am I doing this?” is a lot of work. But I said, “I’m going to push through until I can at least get to the point where when I get up off the cushion, I feel better than when I sat down. And I don’t feel like it was just a waste of my time.” Oftentimes, it was a challenge initially to say, “Can I calm my mind to the point where I will actually consider this a net positive?” And I would say it took about three months. It took about three months to get to the point where when I would get up after 55 minutes, I would say to myself, this is great. I feel really good. And it’s funny, how —
Tim Ferriss: How did you stick with it for that long? Three months is not, I mean, it’s not the —
Kevin Rose: Well, honestly dude it was really —
Tim Ferriss: We’re not talking about a hundred years of solitude, but it’s a non-trivial period of time for someone who operates at really high RPM. So why even have that as a goal?
Kevin Rose: Honestly, Tim, if I’m being really truthful, it was because I was really depressed. We had a lot of stuff going on, both in the country, and with the pandemic, and having a second child, and just having all of this stress hit all at the same time, I just felt like I just needed something. I just needed something to be able to sink into, that wasn’t the news, that wasn’t what was going on around us. And it was right during the pandemic that I decided to — that’s why I decided to do this is because I just couldn’t — you’re sitting at home and you’re not really going out and doing anything, and it’s just like, “I can either drink or insert any other bad thing to do here, or I can pick up something — ”
Tim Ferriss: Hey now, hey now. I’m just kidding. I hear you.
Kevin Rose: No, but it was a lot of that where I was just like I thought we were all going to die. And I was just like, “I need to go deep here.” And then luckily that was enough of a driver to get to the point where then it was tolerable and then enjoyable.
Tim Ferriss: I’m so happy for that.
Kevin Rose: Dude, I’m not anywhere close to being anything in this world, in the world of Zen. It’s going to be 20 plus years or longer for me to get really, really deep, but two things. I’m glad I started because I am at a point now where it is enjoyable. And two, I would say that the only thing I’ve noticed is that little things that just used to get underneath my skin really don’t quite hit me as hard. And so those little edges have been sanded down a little bit, those little rough edges, and so I can take a sharp elbow with ease in ways that I couldn’t before. So I think that’s the one benefit and whatever else comes on top of that is gravy and I’m excited for.
Tim Ferriss: It’s also super weird, Zen Buddhism. And I think that is a more accurate reflection of what we call reality than the clean abstracted pictures we like to paint of reality, that we would like to be the case, because it allows us to grasp it and navigate it so much more easily. For that reason, I think that the journey through Zen Buddhism actually has a lot in common with deep study of psychedelics. I think they’re very similar because the further you get in the more you realize nobody fucking knows what’s going on. This is actually very, very — the more I know, the less I know in a sense, and I find that very liberating, actually.
I find it very liberating that nobody knows what’s going on.
Kevin Rose: My goal is to eventually to get you to study some Zen. I think you would be so — you’re the perfect person for it because there are actual obtainable things, you know what I mean? In some sense, the whole practice is about obtaining nothing, so it’s not like it’s — but the fact that there just are checking questions is — I’m the kind of person that wants to check a box. I want to —
Tim Ferriss: That appeals to me, for sure.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I could see that would appeal to you as well.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Yeah. That’s good. I mean, it has always been of interest to me. I mean, even when I was in Japan, I spent time with — I remember passing these monks, who would be — what is the expression? Asking for alms? I mean, they would have to do a tour of duty where they would ask for money. They’d have to beg for their food, money to buy food. And I would always pass these monks. Not of all of them were necessarily Zen Buddhist monks, but I would pass them every day as I was walking back from school. And I was 15 as an exchange student in Japan and have spent a lot of time recognizing that Zen is not uniquely Japanese, although Zen, the word, that pronunciation, is Japanese, is a tradition that predates its introduction to Japan.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I mean, it came from China, right? Initially it was called Chán before?
Tim Ferriss: Yes. Something like that. I don’t know the character that was used for that, it was probably the same character, actually. Let me just look it up. It’s probably the same.
Kevin Rose: This is Chán.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, Chán. Chán, second tone. Yeah. So Chán, second tone in Mandarin and then Zen in Japanese, then in Korean, I guess it’s Seon. Somebody could tell me I’m pretty rusty on my hungler. But looking at the Korean, I think it’s Seon. And then we have Vietnamese and so on. What I like most about Zen is that it embraces paradox because so much of our existence, I think, is paradoxical and so much of what we want, and so many of our conflicting goals can be symbolized by this word, paradox, that it’s such a fundamental aspect of our existences, but it’s so uncomfortable to look at directly also, because it’s not easily put on a shelf and organized and just slotted into some category that you can understand and figure out.
Kevin Rose: Dude, I want you to have a Zen master on your show. Why wouldn’t you do that? Sam’s had some great —
Tim Ferriss: I’d do that.
Kevin Rose: You should have Henry on your show, man. He’s amazing.
Tim Ferriss: I’d be open to having Henry on the show. I mean, I think part of it is that I don’t feel like I am qualified to ask informed questions about it. If that makes sense?
Kevin Rose: He’s had a lot of students also that have dabbled in psychedelics. So he has some good background there as well. And comparing senior students that also practice Zen and do psychedelics. It’d be interesting to draw some more parallels there.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. And I’m not, even though I support a ton of the science and I’m very involved with the policy and regulation and all sorts of aspects of the psychedelic ecosystem right now, I’m not a hammer looking for nails. I don’t think that psychedelics are panaceas.
Kevin Rose: And I mean, you’re on mushrooms right now.
Tim Ferriss: It wouldn’t be out of character for that to be the case, but I’m not on mushrooms right now.
Kevin Rose: Casually, chewing in the background. Just —
Tim Ferriss: Just chomping on some mushrooms like trail mix. No, no, I’m on the hard kombucha kick right now. But I would love to have somebody on.
Kevin Rose: I think that would be a really fascinating conversation because you are — I mean, you have such a great background in all things Japanese, and obviously, the whole space with psychedelics and Japan, all these things, they’re all interconnected in some way.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Yeah. They’re definitely interconnected. I mean, and also I don’t view these tools as mutually exclusive. And I was listening to an interview recently with Dennis McKenna, who I’m going to have on the podcast soon. Dennis McKenna is the younger brother of Terence McKenna, who is considered the Irish bard of psychedelics, very, very smart guy, incredible storyteller. Dennis is more of the scientist and the ethnopharmacologist, phytochemist, of the two. He’s very scientifically literate and understands organic chemistry and synthesis and things like this. And one of the points that he’s made and did make in this interview I heard was our experience of reality is mediated through chemistry and neuro-transmitters. So when you hear people talk about, say, getting to certain states naturally, and arguing that it is better than augmenting or using psychedelics, the argument rings somewhat hollow when you really start to dig underneath it.
And that’s not to say that one should not develop self-directed capabilities without the use of drugs or plants to achieve these states. I’m not saying that. But the fact is when you practice something, unless we’re going to go into transpersonal psychology and some really gnarly terrain, which I could do, but what we’re talking about is an experience of reality, which is a hallucination that we are creating as the mind applies filters to incoming information, to optimize for a few things like propagation of the species. And when you enter a non-ordinary state of reality, whether it is through ingesting say four or five grams of dried mushrooms, in the case of Psilocybe mushrooms, psilocybin containing mushrooms, or doing very dedicated Zen practice, you are changing the cocktail.
Kevin Rose: A hundred percent.
Tim Ferriss: And in that respect, they’re actually very close cousins. Although, certainly some compounds in plants I think are better for achieving states similar to satori or kensho maybe than others, like meth, probably not. Okay? I don’t think that anyone’s going to suggest meth for coming to terms with some of these deeper realizations necessarily, but I think there’s more common ground than not, at least for those who make a really deep study of it, like Dennis, as an example, who I really encourage everyone to check out. Very, very bright guy. I’d love to have him on.
Kevin Rose: I think he’d be great.
Tim Ferriss: Henry?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, Henry Shukman. He’s done a couple Q and As with Sam. Sam has him creating a lot of content for Sam Harris’ meditation app. So he has a whole dedicated Zen section there, but yeah, I think you’ll find him fascinating because he’s also really well versed in all the latest science and studies going on. And especially some of the neuroscience that’s happening around this study of emptiness, which is this — Henry can speak to it, but it is this state, that kensho state of no thing, non-existence.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, mushin.
Kevin Rose: So I think you guys would hit it off.
Tim Ferriss: I would be very interested. I think mostly, and maybe this wouldn’t be the case with Henry, and sometimes you can get into dangerous pop science territory, unless you’re talking to someone like Adam Gazzaley. How the hell does he say his last name?
Kevin Rose: Gazalley.
Tim Ferriss: Gazalley?
Kevin Rose: Yeah, Gazzaley.
Tim Ferriss: Gazzaley. A side note: who got crazy treatment somewhere in the Middle East, because of his last name. Did he tell you this story?
Kevin Rose: No.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. yeah. There’s an iconic figure in — I want to say Persia, but it could have been actually in Saudi Arabia or somewhere, in Middle Eastern culture and history was Ghazali. G H A Z A L I, and they saw his name and he landed at the airport and they’re like, “Are you Adam Gazzaley?” And he’s like, “Yes.”
Kevin Rose: Oh, my God.
Tim Ferriss: “Oh, you don’t need to wait in this line, sir. You come with us.” And he was like, “What?”
Kevin Rose: That’s going to be really awesome or really bad.
Tim Ferriss: Really, really bad. Yeah. So Adam Gazalley, I should know this after decades of knowing the guy, but is a world-class neuroscientist. Right? So speaking to him about science is one thing I would be most interested with Henry to just talk about his personal experience, to see how well he can describe his personal experience. For me, it’s either you’ve got to choose one end of the pole or the other, it’s got to be randomized controlled studies or personal experience. Both of those, I’m very open to it. It’s the stuff in the middle that gets wonky and McGyvered and hard to vet.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. His descriptions of enlightenment and waking up, they’re the best I’ve ever heard, they’re just — yeah.
Tim Ferriss: All right, cool.
Kevin Rose: You will be blown away and you’ll have some, and you could ask him about the checking questions because he does that with the students. So he’s clearing all the students and how many of them make it? That’d be really curious.
Tim Ferriss: Are those off limits? Are those the level 29 of Scientology where I can’t ask that until I’ve cleared a bunch of hurdles?
Kevin Rose: Dude, it’s not a Scientology type thing, man.
Tim Ferriss: I know I’m just saying, is that protected knowledge?
Kevin Rose: I don’t think so.
Tim Ferriss: Okay.
Kevin Rose: And he can always say, “I can’t tell you,” also.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, yeah. Which is fair. I’m not saying that’s necessarily a bad thing. I’m not comparing what you’re doing to Scientology, no disrespect to Scientology. I know you guys like to sue people, don’t sue me. Some of my best friends are Scientologists. But I’m into it, man. Yeah. Oh, boy. Here we go.
Kevin Rose: I was just going to make some Scientology comments.
Tim Ferriss: I love you guys. Kevin hates you guys.
Kevin Rose: I studied for a while and thought it was great. I had a good time there. A good, good buffet on Sundays.
Tim Ferriss: Oh, God. All right. Here we go. Into the Thunderdome we enter.
Kevin Rose: We’re both dead next week.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. We’re both dead next week. It was nice knowing you guys. So long. Where do we go from here? Hard to segue.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: I would be interested.
Kevin Rose: Sweet. I’ll do the introduction.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Yeah. Email intro Henry.
Kevin Rose: I’m excited for this one. This is going to be fun.
Tim Ferriss: That’d be cool. I’d be into that. I mean, it overlaps with so many of my interests.
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: And I’m not averse to it. I don’t have an aversion to it. The word enlightenment, I’m not going to lie, bothers the shit out of me.
Kevin Rose: You’ve got to say that to him, bring that up. I’d be really curious to — yeah.
Tim Ferriss: The idea, because it creates this bifurcation between the unenlightened and the enlightened and it creates this priesthood. And I have some fundamental allergic reaction to this intermediate to the divine, if that makes any sense? And I’m not saying that is how it is presented within Zen Buddhism, but I do see how that could be used to create power dynamics that are unhealthy.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. That’s one of the things that I was concerned with having grown up in a religious household and later understanding that some of what I was told was not necessarily true but the one thing, the reason I’m so attracted to Zen when we were talking about earlier is just they ask you — it’s not about believing what they say. They ask you to taste it for yourself. That’s what they say.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. Yeah. I dig that. That’s cool. I can get behind that.
Kevin Rose: Awesome, man.
Tim Ferriss: Well, please make the intro, and then I’ll chat with Mr. Henry.
Kevin Rose: What an episode this has been. We’ve had lightning strikes, I almost threw up in the beginning.
Tim Ferriss: Technology. Yeah. Kevin almost puked in the beginning. Technology was taken down by an act of God.
Kevin Rose: Right. We covered a lot of ground here.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Good times, man. Well, it’s good to hang. Good to spend some time together. Anything else that you’d like to mention before we wrap?
Kevin Rose: I asked my wife what we should talk about on the show. And she said, “How about my podcast?” So I should — I thought that was funny, one.
Tim Ferriss: Go for it. Go for it.
Kevin Rose: And yeah, so my wife Darya Rose, she’s a PhD neuroscientist from UCF and she has a fantastic new show called The Darya Rose Show. She’s covered some crazy topics, dude. She has other scientists on so they can talk science, but she’s covering —
Tim Ferriss: You should give some background on Darya for people who don’t know. I mean, she has a lot of scientific training. So you should just maybe explain that for those who may be first-time listeners.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. We just talked recently about Adam Gazzaley in his lab over at USF. So she worked with Adam and — yeah. So she’s got her PhD from there in neuroscience, studied stem cell biology and anything above and beyond that is outside of my pay grade. But for her, what she loves to do these days is really focus on how to take science and break it down. Things that we can actually trust and break it down so that the average consumer can understand it. So she has several episodes on how can we trust vaccines? Why should we trust vaccines? What does the science actually say? Who should we look for or to, for that information? She’s going to be covering birth control and what we understand in the science there, a lot of women’s issues as well, how to raise children in a thoughtful way that doesn’t damage them forever. She had Dr. Andrew Weil on recently and they talked about how to trust alternative medicine. What do you know is true out there? There’s so much BS.
Tim Ferriss: How do you vet that?
Kevin Rose: How do you vet that stuff? So I’m just really proud of her. She’s just kicking ass. She had Andrew Huberman on the show, like you said, about the whole episode on sleep. So many great takeaways there, but yeah, she’s done a great job and yeah. Darya Rose Show. Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: Darya is very legit and very, very smart. Very good at translating without dumbing down, also.
Kevin Rose: That’s a great way to put it.
Tim Ferriss: Which is very hard to do. It is very hard to translate without dumbing down. And she does a great job of that. I miss Dardar.
Kevin Rose: I know. We need to get together, dude. We need to do a little couples thing.
Tim Ferriss: Please give hugs to Darya and people, definitely check it out. Anything else?
Kevin Rose: That’s it, dude. You can find me at @KevinRose on Twitter, modern.finance is the podcast, or I shouldn’t say dot. It’s called Modern Finance. But if you want to go to the website, it’s modern.finance on the web and yeah, dude, thanks for having me on. This was fun as always.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah, man. Super, super fun. And yeah, for me, I don’t have much to say you can find me on tim.blog. Everything I do is there. Twitter at T Ferriss, two Rs, two Ses, at T I M Ferris, at Tim Ferriss on Instagram.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. At TimTimcoin is the new coin. I’m going to launch that. I think I’m do a Solana coin. Can I launch a cryptocurrency under your name?
Tim Ferriss: Please don’t.
Kevin Rose: This is called TimTimcoin.
Tim Ferriss: Oh, that’d be really great for my liability. Just when I don’t want to think about it, I’m going to bed. “By the way, just launched two minutes ago, 11, 12:00 p.m. TimTim, don’t worry about it. I’ll take care of it.
Kevin Rose: Yeah. Put a Tim in your wallet, you’ll be good.
Tim Ferriss: No, what a mess. What a mess. Yeah, I won’t do that, but I may do some other —
Kevin Rose: You should do an NFT, dude. You really should.
Tim Ferriss: Yeah. I mean, why not? I mean people don’t have to buy it and if you understand it’s just a speculative experiment. I’m doing something weird to learn more about it. Why not?
Kevin Rose: Yeah. I’d definitely bid on your first —
Tim Ferriss: TimTim TalkTalk episode one. All right. KevKev. It’s good to see you, man.
Kevin Rose: All right, brother. Good chatting.
Tim Ferriss: And to everybody listening, you’ll be able to find show notes, links to everything. All the companies, books, compounds. God knows what?
Kevin Rose: Yeah.
Tim Ferriss: That we mentioned Japanese terms. Sorry, show notes friend. You’ll be able to find it at Tim dot blog forward slash podcast. And until next time, thanks for tuning in.
The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 800 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.