Oct 28, 2022·edited Oct 28, 2022

Hello Sir.

On page 230 of Gumption, you instructed the reader to "throw this book out the window and go plug (Jimmy DiResta's) name into YouTube."

I did this and, due to my remote location in Northern Ontario, it was immediately set upon by wolverines. Possibly by a groundhog but probably by wolverines. I wasn't wearing my glasses.

Nonetheless - and despite my gratitude for being hipped to Mr. DiResta - I think you owe me a book. At the very least, half a book.

Many thanks.


Deep In The Heart of The Nagagami Forest, Ontario

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Is there a food or food pairing you consider an abomination that others love? Pineapple on pizza?

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Hi Nick! It's Boaz from Pittsburgh, PA! In this video, you mention a private event at a golf resort where you recently performed. What's the strangest private event you've been booked for?

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I had to come looking for you! You fell off my feed for some reason - perhaps it was that the Algo didn't recognise you without your magnificent beard???

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Hey Nick,

I just scored an apprenticeship as a window installer for a local company. I’ve been wanting to break into the trades for a long time so I’m quite excited about this latest development. Pun 💯% intended. I’ve spent the last 18 years in the social work/childcare field and I’m wondering if you have any tricks of the trade that you might pass along (again, pun totally intended). This is a bit of a 180 for me and I want to make sure it goes smoothly. Any tips for a first time tradesman?

Much obliged,

Adam, Amanda and Levi

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Wow - that is amazing how peaceful that is to hear/ read such transfers of knowledge - sharing of manly grooming approaches. As a mother to a son who plays soccer - even now - in the Mens League, he’s got that soccer groovy hair styling thing about himself. And the beard, just so 🤔🙄🤔he probably spends more time on his hair then I do . What grooming product would you recommend for the holiday gift giving season?

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Thank you so much for answering my question. You put a smile on this unkept face.

I also appreciated the thought and words and am prepared to embark on a new regiment.

For what it's worth, for years I wore my beard close/short and it always appeared a little thin especially along the jawline. But as I've allowed it to grow I feel like it's filled in/thicken to its current state.

Also I enjoy that it now looks like a snowball hit me in my chin. Thank you so much for just being you.

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Hey! I like the hat in this video!! I had an adventure recently with a Red Cap at a Chicago Cubs NIU game. Would you be interested in reading it? https://tangentialmango.substack.com/p/the-red-cap

I'm in the process of digesting Healthcare, human care, and humanity. I have been struggling to use my words, and Substack has helped tremendously. It helps me connect virtually in ways I have been missing In Real Life. Thank you for your ongoing engagement in virtual social life. It's medicine for me, knowing that you're out there making fun stuff like Parks and Rec, and that while I am living through Season 3 (I'm a bit Leslie Knope, Anne Perkins, and plenty of Chris Traeger). And while I awake from my pandemic slumber, again and again, I return to medicine that feels like a salve.

Wristcutters. We're the Millers. Parks & Rec. The Men Who Stare at Goats.

The History of Future Folk.

Marcel the Shell with Shoes On.

The Great North.

And slowly, I'm figuring out where to find my tribe. Like the Morton Arboretum. And downtown Lombard. And a Wookiefoot show at Reggie's in Chicago next Saturday.

And so it goes.

Thank you, continually. Please don't stop. You're onto something. There is a place to engage online and have CONVERSATIONS. I just don't YET know how. But George Saunders has also been a light on that path, and thank you for leading me to him. And Jeff Tweedy. A triangle of healing medicine.

I am full of gratitude today. Thank you. Thank you. I don't have a beard. But your vibe is an energy I'm looking for in my community. And they're coming out of the woodwork. Slowly but surely.

So it goes!


Jessie Hammersmith, RN

Lombard, Illinois

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Oct 28, 2022·edited Oct 28, 2022

Hi Nick, Ben from Beautiful Vancouver, BC (the real one, not the pretend one in Washington). I used to colour my hair because my wife insisted, and with my brother-in-law being a hairdresser, it was basically free. I told her I didn't see a need to do it, and she simply stated that having grey in my hair made HER look older. (We were in our early 30s then.) So, I acquiesced, because that's what you do under those circumstances. When I hit 44 and she turned 40, I told her I was going to stop colouring my hair because at 40, she was now officially old, to which she replied: "That's alright, because now you make me look younger." There's simply no winning, it seems. So now, at 64, my hair has gone from salt & pepper, to grey, to a point where it is now turning white...ish. She colours her hair with nothing more than peroxide, so that it comes in looking bronze. (I have to pull it through the cap so that she just has hi-lites.) It looks amazing, of course, but that's because she's a Fijian (Indian) but now makes ME look a lot younger than I am. So, full circle? I guess I'd look a lot younger if I shaved off the goatee, because it's pretty well white as well. (Check out my "About page" on my SUBSTACK if you want to see how grey it is). https://benwoestenburg.substack.com

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Hey Nick.

At what age you started having a beard?


Somewhere in México.

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Not having a beard, this was getting hilarious toward the end... But it did cause me pause regarding the hair on my head. I might let it grow out more naturally from now on (gray hair and all).

P.S. My family LOVES “Making It;” you and Amy are hilarious and wonderful. My 7-year old and I just love the entertainment and creativity.

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P.P.S. Dandruff....the unmentionable being mentioned...hilariously.

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Hello Nick,

Thanks for the sea breeze tip, worth way more than the price of admission! A point of curiosity for me... what prompts the wearing of headphones during the dissemination of Equus Asinus ruminations?

Best regards, Tom, A huge (6' 280#) fan from Libertyville, Illinois (and former Kankakee resident)

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A mouthful of thistles.... some ladies (or maybe we are not ladies) would enjoy feeling thistles all over their bodies... just sayin'

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Howdy Nick! Tim from Orlando, FL here. I have been working backstage in the entertainment industry for a while as a lighting technician, pyrotechnic tech, even computer programmer these days, and the constant high pressure nature of work in this industry is starting to wear on me. Do you have any tips on how to continue making a living in the industry that you love while maintaining your sanity and sense of self outside of work?

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I can't answer for your industry, but in Healthcare, the word is BOUNDARIES. We don't learn it in school, or orientation. It's learned (or not) and they are engaged (or not). Figure out your boundaries, your worth, what you value. Then get comfortable saying "No" in the kindest ways possible. But be consistent. Vigilant. Unflappable. I understand what you mean, it's really hard to learn. But like other muscles, boundaries can be built up over time. Keep it up!

Jessie (Lombard, IL)

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At least thistles can be healthy! (If made in tea and not eaten)

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