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The Monday 6 - August 2, 2021

Kyle Petzinger
Kyle Petzinger
Hi there, friend.
I’m heavy on some Olympics content this week. Sorry, I’m not sorry.
Also, if you don’t want to get COVID, get a vaccine. 💉 This isn’t complicated.
Onto the 6:

1. 2008 Swimming 4x100m Freestyle Relay Final
I remember where I was when I watched this. It’s probably the greatest race (of any type) I’ve ever seen. It had it all:
  • Keeping Michael Phelps’ hopes alive for a record 8 gold medals in one Olympics
  • A dramatic comeback
  • A 3-time Olympic veteran at the tail end of his career pulling out the performance of a lifetime (Jason Lezak)
  • Beating some pompous Frenchmen
The video below is the full, original broadcast with commentary. 🇺🇸 🇺🇸
2008 Beijing Olympics Swimming Men's 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay Final on Vimeo
2008 Beijing Olympics Swimming Men's 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay Final on Vimeo
And if that’s not enough, Peacock has a full 1h 9m documentary on the race. Inject it into my veins.
Watch The Greatest Race Streaming Online | Peacock
2. Pedestrianism: The Epic Sport Of Yesteryear
Evidently, nearly 150 years ago, the sport of pedestrianism captured the world by storm. Thousands of people lined the streets to watch the athletes of their time…walk around a track for almost a week. 🚶🏻‍♂️
To be fair, the competitors were allowed to run as well, but the essence of the competition was this:
…contestants were required to walk in circles for six days in a row, until they had completed laps equivalent to at least 450 miles (724km). They could run, amble, stagger or crawl, but they must not leave the oval-shaped sawdust track until the race was over. Instead they ate, drank and napped (and presumably, performed other bodily functions) in little tents at the side, some of which were elaborately furnished.
Ye olde times sure sounded like a hoot.
The strange 19th-Century sport that was cooler than football - BBC Future
3. Best Opening Of The Olympics Ever
The lighting of the Olympic torch at the 1992 Games in Barcelona was definitely the coolest ever. This dude nailed his one job:
The Real Story of the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Cauldron Lighting
The Real Story of the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Cauldron Lighting
Hit the GIF above to watch a short video on how it went down.
4. Monkey Gangs Fight It Out In Thailand
Evidently, there are literal street fights breaking out between warring groups of monkeys in Thailand. 🐒
Supakarn Kaewchot, a government veterinarian, said: ‘The monkeys are so used to having tourists feed them and the city provides no space for them to fend for themselves.
‘With the tourists gone, they’ve been more aggressive.
‘They’re invading buildings and forcing people to flee their homes.’
Round one: fight!
Thailand: Monkey gangs fight for food as lockdown keeps out tourists | Metro News
5. Gallium
Not often can you look at entire sectors of the economy (or even the entire economy) and point to a single innovation that unlocked virtually boundless growth and prosperity. Silicon-based microchips, first created in 1961 (that’s not that long ago!) may be the single most important technology created in the past 100 years.
Building on this, gallium (atomic #31) and its alloys are enabling new innovations, not possible with silicon-based ones.
This Wall Street Journal article dives into the applications of gallium and why it’s becoming an increasingly important element in tech and (consequently) national security.
The Novel Material That’s Shrinking Phone Chargers, Powering Up Electric Cars, and Making 5G Possible - WSJ
6. Spotting A Liar
I thought this article by The Atlantic was fascinating: How can you tell if someone is lying? Spoiler: it’s not as easy as it’s made out to be.
Across cultures, people believe that behaviors such as averted gaze, fidgeting, and stuttering can betray deceivers.
In fact, researchers have found little evidence to support this belief—despite decades of searching. “One of the problems we face as scholars of lying is that everybody thinks they know how lying works,” says Hartwig, who co-authored a study of nonverbal cues to lying in the Annual Review of Psychology. Such overconfidence has led to serious miscarriages of justice, as Tankleff and Deskovic know all too well. “The mistakes of lie detection are costly to society and people victimized by misjudgments,” Hartwig says. “The stakes are really high.”
How Can You Tell if Someone Is Lying? - The Atlantic
That’s it for this week. If you found anything useful or fun, let me know! And if you have any suggestions, shoot them my way. 😊 See you next week!
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Kyle Petzinger
Kyle Petzinger @kylepetz

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