Hunter Gatherer

Brimming with ideas and a fascinating read. STEVEN PINKER, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University

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NYC caveman shuns modernity, loves football

I like this guy’s style:

Perhaps one of the most unusual, yet knowledgeable, of fans lives outdoors at the very tip of northern Manhattan and has become a bit of a folk legend. That fan would be Sabas, who is known as the Cave Man of Inwood Hill Park.

Sabas, 79, who has lived outdoors for years, extols the virtues of shunning the diversions of complicated modernity — but when it comes to football, that is a different story.

“Of course I’ll watch the L.S.U.-Alabama game Monday night – I wouldn’t miss that,” he told me on Saturday when I ran into him in the park. 

Full post here.  Thanks to Lee Rawlings for the link.

Meeting Mark Sisson

Living in NYC, I’ve gotten the chance to meet a fair number of health figures over the past two years: paleo, primal, barefoot, authors, academics, coaches.  One person whom I hadn’t met was Mark Sisson.  Mark Sisson, as I’m sure nearly all of you know, is the author of The Primal Blueprint and runs, the single best primal/paleo resource on the net.

A month and a half ago, Mark emailed me.  Said he was going to be in NYC, would love to attend a meetup.  I suggested he speak, and Mark agreed to give a 15-20 minute talk (max), but then just wanted to riff with people, hear what was on people’s minds.  Less of a lecture and more of a casual meet-and-greet with mingling.  Of course, the casual meet-and-greet turned into a 150+ person affair (our largest meetup event to date) and the 15 minute talk was followed by an hour of dialog and Q&A that showed no sign of stopping when we had to end it.  Mark spoke about the metabolic paradigm shift: moving from a sugar-based metabolism to a fat-based metabolism, and the role of carbohydrates in a healthy diet.

A few impressions.

First, Sisson is terrific speaker, and quick on his feet.  When you only read someone’s blog, you’re never sure how they’re going to come off in person.  Mark was articulate, succinct, funny, and passionate.  No winding answers or dodges or tangents.  Clear and information-dense, just like his blog, giving the right amount of scientific detail (which is very hard to do).  The type of talking that you could listen to all day long.  If you get a chance to hear Mark speak, take it.

Second, Sisson has a temperament worth emulating.  People always say, “Oh wow, Sisson looks really healthy.  Great abs. I want to look like that when I’m X years old.”  That’s all true, but it’s old hat by now.  I’m sure Mark’s abs are great and all (I never saw them), but I like his temperament even more: firm, but gracious.

Let me give an example.  He and I had dinner after the event, and we ordered primal (firm).  The restaurant accidently messed up the order.  Not a huge deal, Mark rolled with it (gracious).  But then the waiter kindly and unexpectedly brought out a complimentary dessert.  Mark had to be even more gracious and even more firm in turning it down.  But turn it down he did, in an arms race of politeness.  Really quite funny.

Firm, but gracious.  Firmness is an immovable solid, masculine.  Firmness is a foundational bedrock of belief that will not be budged by a silly situation.  Firmness: we ordered primal, with a normal amount of specifications, and we didn’t order dessert.  That is who we are.  Graciousness, or grace, is a movable liquid, feminine.  Grace means living with a flexible interface with the world, adapting effortlessly to people and circumstance.  Graciousness: rolling with the messed up order, politely turning down dessert.  That is who we are too.  Firm, but gracious — you need to be both in your life.  Forget sculpting your abs to emulate Sisson’s six-pack.  Craft your temperament to emulate his.

Third, Sisson is a true entrepreneur.  I hold entrepreneurs in high regard.  I’m talking war hero-level status.  Entrepreneurs are people who take real risks and put real money on the line in the face of uncertainty.  Entrepreneurs like John Wood, at U.S. Wellness Meats, who was told he was crazy to only feed grass to cattle.  Entrepreneurs like Joel Salatin, innovating with polyculture agriculture.  And entrepreneurs like Mark Sisson, who for years maintained the “expensive hobby” of building the primal community.  Mark disseminates information better than almost anyone in the health world, making healthier lifestyles more achievable to more people.  The tricky thing about information these days is that it’s never been easier to expose false information.  So in a sense, Mark has earned his credibility by uncovering the truth and speaking it.  Okay, okay, perhaps that’s starting to sound a little fawning — but I did say war hero-level status, right?  As someone who is in the process of starting my own business, facing all the challenges and uncertainty that comes with it, Mark gets my mad respect.

The 1% of you who haven’t heard of Marks Daily Apple need to make it a regular stop.  You name a topic and odds are, Mark’s got a single post that gets you 80% of the way there.

Many thanks to CrossFit NYC – The Black Box for hosting the event.  (And give Mark some love by liking or retweeting this.)

Mark Sisson coming to NYC

Hey folks, the one and only Mark Sisson, author of The Primal Blueprint and blogger and health pioneer at, will be in NYC in a couple weeks.  We’re going to have a meetup — only $5 to cover a little wine and a few light snacks.  The subject of Mark’s talk will be “The Metabolic Paradigm Shift”, which will be of interest to more advanced paleo/primal folks but will still be accessible to beginners.  And Mark is definitely up for some discussion and Q&A.  Don’t miss it.  Details below, with a link to RSVP.

Mark Sisson @ Eating Paleo in NYC

“The Metabolic Paradigm Shift”

8pm on Wednesday, May 25th

CrossFit NYC – The Black Box

Make the pilgrimage to see the Vitruvian Cow at BRGR (grass-fed burger joint)

If you eat grass-fed beef, you've probably heard of US Wellness Meats, a pioneering company from Missouri that has struck on the ingenious business innovation of…feeding animals their natural diets.  I recently met John Wood, founder of US Wellness Meats, at WAPF Wise Traditions.  Solid guy.  And a real entrepreneur who put a lot on the line to start US Wellness Meats.  John mentioned that an NYC burger joint called BRGR uses his grass-fed beef.  So this week I made the pilgrimage to BRGR.

BRGR has a challenge.  They have to educate people on the benefits of grass-fed.  And they've done this with a series of artwork on the walls of their restaurant.  I really love the first panel, which imitates Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man.  But for a cow.  It reads: "Cows were designed to graze on grass…".  Hard to argue with that.  Check out all the panels below.

The food was delicious.  And not very expensive.  If you go, tell them you came because of US Wellness Meats.  We should support places that are making an effort to serve the right stuff.


The Vitruvian Cow


Rooftop release party for Robb Wolf’s The Paleo Solution

This is going to be one you don't want to miss.  On Saturday, September 18, come join us for a rooftop release party for Robb Wolf's new book, The Paleo Solution. If you don't know Robb, see his bio below.  In short, he knows the science (studied under Cordain) and he knows the application (world-class trainer).  So he wrote a book.

This is going to be the biggest party we've thrown at my apartment…and we've thrown some big ones.  We have to limit it to 150 people due to the space limitations, so sign up quickly.

What, alcohol isn't paleo?  Zing, you got me!  How about St. Peter's sorghum beer?  St. Peter's has stepped up to sponsor the event, so we'll have a bunch of gluten-free beer on hand.  I'm sure we'll have some NorCal Margaratas too.  

This is going to be sick.  Details below.
Start: 8:30pm
Book talk: 9:30pm
Party until ??? 
Cost: $30 per person (includes signed copy of the book + alcohol)
Sign up here
ROBB WOLF, a former research biochemist is one of the world’s leading experts in Paleolithic nutrition. A student of Prof. Loren Cordain, author of The Paleo Diet, Wolf has transformed the lives of tens of thousands of people around the world via his top ranked iTunes podcast and wildly popular seminar series. Wolf has functioned as a review editor for the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, is cofounder of the nutrition and athletic training journal, The Performance Menu, co-owner of NorCal Strength & Conditioning, one of the Men’s Health “top 30 gyms in America” and co-owner of Paleo Brands Inc. a paleo food company selling meals and snacks featuring grass fed meat, wild caught fish and all organic ingredients.
Wolf is a former California State Powerlifting Champion (565Lb Squat, 345lb Bench, 565lb Dead Lift) and a 6-0 amateur kickboxer. He coaches athletes at the highest levels of competition and consults with Olympians and world champions in MMA, motocross, rowing and triathlon. Wolf has provided seminars in nutrition and strength & conditioning to various military entities including the Canadian Light Infantry and the United States Marine Corps.

Barefoot running taking off in NYC

Clever media people often ask me, "How do you live a paleolithic lifestyle in…New York City?"  Zing!  Oh you clever media people.  But high population density and open-mindedness can go a long way.  Here are new developments just for barefoot running: 

1. Barefoot Runners NYC now has about 175 members.  If you’re ever in NYC and want to join us, we have regular runs in Central Park on Saturday mornings at 10am and Wednesday evenings as 7pm.

2. Michael Sandler, of RunBare and author of Barefoot Running, is holding a free clinic on Wednesday, June 2nd at 6:30pm.  Nearly 40 people have signed up for that one.

3. Barefoot Ken Bob is also holding a free clinic in Central Park the following week on Tuesday, June 8th at 6:30pm.  Details here

4. We’ve had recent running clinics with Erwan Le Corre and Barefoot Ted too.

If you’re a beginning barefoot/VFF runner, or if you’re just intrigued by it and want to learn more, the two clinics are perfect places to get instructions from some of the best.  You don’t need to go out and buy any special shoes — it’s best to learn totally barefoot first.  And they’re free!