THIS MORNING I’M DOING SOME SLOW THINKING. I needed the perfect soundtrack for this. Mile Davis’ “Kind Of Blue” is just right.


I’ve read Gladewell’s “Blink”. I’ve tried to read Daniel Kahneman’s “Thinking, Fast and Slow”. Without getting mired down in the deep stuff of his ideas, he says we need to do more slow thinking. An example in his book demonstrates whether a person solves a problem "quickly with little conscious deliberation" or through reflective, slow thinking:

A bat and a ball cost $1.10. The bat costs $1.00 more than the ball. How much does the ball cost?

So, did you solve it fast; or slow?

It’s no secret, I enjoy YouTube. I just love that people are creating this amazing content and sharing it so socially. Some of my favorites are:

  • MonaLisa Twins

  • Marques Brownlee

  • Pomplamoose Music

  • Casey Neistat

  • Memphis Drum Shop

    Numerous road-tripping vlogs like:

  • Drivin and Vibin

  • Travelling K

Lately, my obsession is with vlog called “Cruising The Cut”. Did you know that there are canals all across Great Britain? They were cut through the land in the 1700s. Today, there are people who cruise these canals on “narrow boats”. These boats are just under seven feet wide and 40 to 60 feet long. These are live-aboard boats. One of the guys that lives on board a narrow boat, cruises the cut at speeds up to two miles an hour and vlogs about it is a guy named David Johns.

Yes, two miles an hour. And I sit and watch video after video of him doing this slow cruise. I’ve mentioned this to a few people and they say, “What?” If I can convince them to watch one with me, they’re hooked.

It reminds me of the value to going slow, of taking in the sights, of paying attention.

Our great friend, mentor and travel advisor, Doug Manning is always encouraging us to take the “blue highways” as we travel. Those are the blue roads on the map, the ones less traveled these days. Any time we’re ready to hit the road Doug tells us the route to take and it rarely involves Interstate highways. He also is a human atlas and knows the sights to see along America’s byways. His mode of travel demands slowness.

Recently on the Airstream website, they had a survey you could take and it would tell you what kind of traveler you are, and, of course, what model of Airstream you need to do that kind of traveling. I took a look at the survey and thought: this is stupid, but I was waiting on my truck to be serviced so I took it. Here’s a screenshot of the results:

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Hmmm, maybe not so stupid afterall.

About that bat and ball; if you’re a “fast” thinker like apparently 86% of the test takers are, you answered: 10 cents. And you would be wrong.

Want a chance to slow down and solve it properly? Go.

I feel like I am slowing down, that probably comes with becoming a man-of-a-certain-age. But I like going slower. I drink my morning cup from a insulated tumbler kind of vessel. It holds a little more and lasts me all morning. I read slower these days, not because I can no longer read phrases rather than just words, but because I want to see what words the writer has chosen. I think all good writers agonize over the choice of a word and I should honor that.

Even when I practice at my drum set, which I do most every day, I’ve slowed down. I used to press hard to develop more and more stick speed. Now I play for nuance. I remember my jazz band instructer yelling at me that the bass drum should be felt and not heard. I vehemently disagreed (in my mind) with him at the time, now; I play that way. I agree that the space between the notes is just as important as the notes themselves.

No doubt by now you’ve figured out that the correct answer is five cents. Way to slow down. Makes you wonder what else you’re missing by being all in a big rush doesn’t it?