Day 179: Play chess in a park
REMEMBERED TIME I believe I played chess for 27 minutes and 11 seconds. ACTUAL TIME How did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 178: Do nothing
I’ve increasingly tried to live and work more efficiently - and with good reason. In 2010, the average American during an average day spent: 8.67 hours sleeping 0.8 hours performing other “personal care needs”, like bathing 5.18 hours participating in leisure and sports activities, from watching television (2.75 hours) to socializing (0.7 hours) 0.18 checking email and...
Day 177: Run errands as an amputee
This is a touchy subject, I realize that. And before I begin - it’s important to say that I recognize I will never begin to understand the depth of the hardships some with disabilities must go through. But I believe stepping into the shoes of any individual, however brief, is a richly rewarding experience. And that’s what this project is all about - growing, understanding and...
Day 176: Deliver a singing telegram
Weekend post On day 176 of The Time Hack, I delivered the singing telegram I advertised on day 132 of the project. REMEMBERED DETAILS I walked in and left my backpack at the door. I first greeted a friend’s girlfriend, telling her that I hoped she was “enjoying her bagel”, which I was told to say. I then began singing “You are My Sunshine”. I sang the first...
Day 175: Hang out in a club's VIP lounge
REMEMBERED TIME I believe we were in the VIP lounge of a dance club for 1 hour and 48 minutes. ACTUAL TIME How did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 174: Consume an entire piece of paper in one...
Were you ever tempted to eat the glue in the large glass container in your elementary school art class? Seriously, how good did it look being thrown onto your construction paper? Have you ever wondered: “What’s up with that?” Lee Kagan writes for Discover Magazine about the times our bodies make wrong nutritional decisions: My patient was a 37-year-old executive assistant...
Day 173: Work as a street performer
“You are meant to fail at some of the things you really want to do in life,” my sister told me once. “You learn from your mistakes, and your failures give you hunger to succeed at other goals down the road. For you, maybe that’s what this is.” She was speaking about my less-than-successful career in music, which, when I was 21-years-old, I hoped would grow into...
Day 172: Create corn flakes-flavored milk
REMEMBERED DETAILS I poured skim milk from a container with a blue top into a black pot, containing the corn flakes. I let the corn flakes soak for approximately 15 minutes. Washed and used a smaller black pot, which was in the sink to help in the straining. Using a spaghetti strainer, I dumped the flavorful milk into the smaller pot, then into a tall glass. ACTUAL EVENTS What happened on...
Day 171: Jog through Rock Creek Park at night
If you want to put a smile on your face and dramatically raise your energy level, do not go to the gym. Researchers have found that those who burn off calories in the great outdoors feel happier and healthier than those who slave away on treadmills and StairMasters. The Daily Mail says: The findings come from a review of 25 studies comparing the benefits of exercise in natural environments,...
Day 170: Tempt an alpaca to spit
Weekend post For day 170, I wanted to have an alpaca or llama spit at me. I found a family through the web that was raising alpacas and convinced them to arrange my meeting with their animals. Unfortunately, the woman who showed me the alpacas told me they “do not spit at humans”. Though I waved my hand close to one’s face, I still walked away dry. ACTUAL EVENTS What...
Day 169: Crash a wedding
Weekend post On Friday night, my friend Lou asked if I’d like to attend a wedding the following night. “Does someone need a date?” I asked. “No, I have a date. Carolyn and I were invited. But that doesn’t matter. Just come in after dinner and crash it. It’ll be fine,” Lou responded. “Wait, what? Do people do that?” “All the time....
Day 168: Drive 'the antique car'
I was forbidden to drive my father’s antique car since the day I received my license. Day 169 is when that finally changed. Thank you, Time Hack. ACTUAL EVENTS What happened on day 169? Find out here. REMEMBERED TIME I estimate that I drove my father’s antique car for 8 minutes and 20 seconds. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time...
Day 167: Make a rain catcher and drink rainwater
On day 168, I tore a trash bag open and, using small wooden sticks from day 46 of The Time Hack, I made a rain catcher on the patio outside my front door in Washington DC. Luckily, a storm swept by a few hours later, providing more than an ample supply of water. I brought the water inside, took several healthy swigs, proudly sat down with my glass to do some research on the topic and read...
Day 166: Join a laughter group
Several years ago, I read an article about the rise of laughter groups in the United States. In these weekly assemblies, strangers meet to laugh - not about anything in particular, but rather just to laugh. Group participants, according to the article, felt they walked away happier and with more bounce in their steps. The mental image of all this sounded so crazy that I’ve since been...
Day 165: Learn to speed read
As a journalist, it’s painful to admit I was once a slow reader. Not debilitatingly slow, but at least a few paces behind most. When I was 16, my teacher assigned a group project about Shakespeare. It was midweek in late spring, and I rolled my aging Nissan Sentra to Christina Machocco’s house to meet up with four classmates. Our task: to read and record audio of ourselves...
Day 164: Use speaker phone on Amtrak's quiet car
REMEMBERED TIME I believe I spoke to my friend, Lou, on Amtrak’s quiet car while en route from New York to Washington DC for 1 minute and 41 seconds. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 163: Undergo acupuncture
Weekend post REMEMBERED DETAILS I received four needles in my back during the procedure. I was located in the third room from the end of the hall. The acupuncture specialist was located on the second floor of an Herb shop in New York City’s Chinatown and wore a long white doctor’s jacket. He spoke very little English. As one entered, the bed was positioned in the far right...
Day 162: Respond to a 'suspicious ad'
Weekend post REMEMBERED DETAILS I was wearing a plaid shirt when I called the man who posted the ad. I held the phone in my left hand during the call. He told me he was looking for female models. I told him I “may be able to play the part”. He hung up abruptly. ACTUAL EVENTS What happened on day 163? Find out here. REMEMBERED TIME I believe I spent 2 minutes and 47 seconds...
Day 161: Pull an 'all-nighter'
The posts last week were less frequent because I was at E3 in Los Angeles. Visit the BBC News website for my stories on the new Wii U, PlayStation Vita, immersive video game tech and a sit-down with the head of Activision. Today, a story on video game coders producing releases from scratch in 48 hours ran as well. For day 162, I engaged in a task I avoided in college and have somehow dodged...
Day 160: Play a sensory deprivation game
REMEMBERED TIME I believe I played the indie video game Deep Sea for 2 minutes and 21 seconds. *Note: the person in the photo played the game before I did. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 159: Experience virtual reality
REMEMBERED TIME I believe I drove a car around in virtual reality for 2 minutes and 54 seconds. *Note: the person in the photo is not me but rather the person that went before me. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 158: Play the Nintendo Wii U
REMEMBERED TIME I estimate that I played the new Nintendo Wii U for 4 minutes and 33 seconds. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 157: Attend the Electronic Entertainment Expo
REMEMBERED TIME I estimate my first trip into the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles lasted 4 hours and 02 minutes. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 156: Hang out on Skid Row
REMEMBERED TIME I believe I navigated the streets of Skid Row, speaking to those I came across, for 1 hour and 44 minutes. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 155: Use a Japanese bidet
REMEMBERED TIME I believe it took 2 minutes and 44 seconds to use the Japanese bidet. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 154: Make a duct tape wallet
REMEMBERED TIME I estimate it took 33 minutes and 12 seconds to create a duct tape wallet. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 153: Tour the 'most dangerous' neighborhood in...
Scary. REMEMBERED TIME I believe I toured Anacostia with a Zipcar for 27 minutes and 12 seconds. ACTUAL TIME How long did it take? Find out here. Why don’t videos or images of time appear on this site?
Day 152: Attempt to achieve nonduality
Several months ago, I did a story for work about a New York-based neuroscientist attempting to better understand how some Buddhist monks meditate. The scientist claimed that skilled meditation practitioners are at times able to achieve a level of “oneness” called “nonduality”, a mental state where one is equally aware of both oneself as well as his or her environment. ...
Day 151: Induce a Tetris dream
The “Tetris effect” describes a widely accepted phenomenon of playing the video game during the day, and then dreaming about playing the game at night. Surprising to many, however, is that this peculiar effect can help individuals suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Individuals who play Tetris for prolonged periods have reported to researchers that they see...