Podcast Through The Years

Man, I looked back on some photos over the past 1.5 years in my phone, and I couldn’t help but notice an amazing trend.  After the first six months of my podcast, I had only accumulated just under 1800 plays.  A year and a few months later, I’ve amassed a whopping 24k plays + downloads from so many different countries around the world.  Here are some photos and a podcast on my journey.

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MOST RECENT

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The trials and tribulations I had to endure on the way were insane.  At my job, during the month of July (when my plays sparked dramatically), the majority of the teachers were listening to my podcast to infer and implicate who I MAY have been talking about.  I got a lot of s*** for it, threatened, warned, and the teachers began to hate my guts (can’t handle the truth).  Teachers would walk by stepping on my shoe without apologizing, chatter on so many different levels about who I am and how come I have so much work – all this culminated into the biggest success EVER in the history of my life.  How? I never gave up!

Podcast

TOEFL: Part A – Part I – Incomplete Independent Clauses

For all of my students around the world tuning in to my  YouTube channel and blogs for test preparation help, here’s one on TOEFL.

I know a lot of people view my blogs for a number of things; whether it’s health related articles or personal development.  However, this particular blog is for several PhD students who have asked me to break down the TOEFL (which is widely known test for NES students who are trying to learn abroad) grammar section into small steps.

Because grammar in TOEFL is the same as ACT and SAT (or very near), I’m going to break down each category individually to help you understand the very basics in understanding Structure.

Introduction

This part of the test consists of fifteen incomplete sentences.  Some portion of each sentence has been replaced by a blank, so it’s up to you to figure out which one completes the sentence grammatically and logically.

On top of this, there are five main points tested.

Sentence Structure

  • Incomplete Independent Clauses
  • Independent Adjective clauses
  • Missing Participial Phrases
  • Missing Appositives
  • Adverb Clauses
  • Noun Clauses
  • Missing Prepositional Phrases

The other testing points consist of: word order, verbs & verbals, proper style, and word choice.

In the PDF down below I go over the basic simple, compound and complex sentence structuring along with independent clauses and a couple of examples.  I don’t want too much information overload on the first TOEFL blog, so stay updated for more coming this week. Consider this a warm-up.

TOEFL Part A – Incomplete Independent Clauses

Maldives Day II: The Resurgence

What a magnificent day on the island.  Speedboat, Egyptians, Malaysians, Kenyans, Indians, delicious food, unbelievable resort, gorgeous bungalows, fish of all sorts, crabs crawling on the rocks….I can’t be thankful enough!

Now, this will all be explained more thoroughly in my podcast (at the bottom of the page), but I’ll give a nice rundown with some photos to fulfil your appetite.

Dentist + Engineer

When I first entered the speedboat, I saw a girl staring at me – a blank stare.  Now, I have the type of charisma that resonates, but I was a bit afraid of her (lol).  Nonetheless, I realized that both her and her friend were wonderful within the first 15 minutes of reaching the island, and I befriended them shortly after.  4th year dental student from Cairo and a 3rd year engineering student from another state.  Boy, we had stories!

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This beach, to say the very least, was captivating beyond comprehension. The bungalows that sat off in the distance, the people who relaxed on the sandy beaches, the kids doing the snorkelling off in the middle of the….sea, the tourists flocking around the island and even the extraordinary buffet.  Man, if only there was a little cloud cover.

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What I found most compelling about the trip was….was I even suppose to be here? When it was 12:30, I told my friends, “man, I should be in the sky right now heading back to Thailand.”  Amazing how that works.  I also met another teacher from a southern state in Malaysia who teaches English (Malaysian descent) and one of his students placed first in a public speaking competition.  I’m a public speaker.

How are we all connected? It’s so intriguing knowing I met a dentist (I used to be a dental assistant), an engineer (I teach so many engineers), and a teacher (whereas the both of us teach English and public speaking).  I attracted these individuals into my life because of what I do and the mindset I have….even my past jobs and experiences.

And in the following photo is the morning sunrise (just an hour ago)…..there should be a greater word than grateful.

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Free-writing & Free-speaking Topics For ESL Students (Downloadable PDF)

Freewriting Topics

FINALLY! Thanks to my man on instagram, I’ve been shown the way to upload PDF’s on blogs for my students, which means there’s a lot of content that’s coming soon for all my South-Eastern Asia seaboard students.

In Asia, ideas aren’t developed as compared to the western world.  Let me give you an example – noise pollution is just as bad as visual pollution.  To what extent do you agree?

In Thailand, my students wouldn’t have an idea, although the visual and noise pollution is some of the worst in Asia.

Well, with the link above, you can download the PDF, print it, and do some free writing every morning to develop not only your writing, but your speaking, too.

This is wonderful for a lot of students who are trying to achieve high marks in their IELTS Writing Task 2’s.

Nonetheless, if you guys have any comments or recommendations, please feel free to shoot them my way.  I’ll be more than happy to answer any and stay informed by following my blog when more content is available!

Vacation: Malaysia Airlines, Sheraton Hotel, Spartan Race & Amazing People All Around!

What a trip!

I can’t emphasize enough that doing my podcast recently on self-control helped me out tremendously upon flying here to KL.

2.5 Hour Delay!

Honestly, there was absolutely nothing I can do about it.  Who knows what the story was (although someone said something about a plane being in a hanger somewhere at KLIA1 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport).  2.5 hours camping out at the gate after security – was brutal….but I was able to finish a good amount of blogs and communicate with folks.

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More Delays!

Once we arrived, it seemed as if the biggest cruiseline in the world docked at the airport and unloaded all their passengers to clear customs and immigration.  45 minutes in the line with people from I-Dont-Know-What-Country looking at me and making comments about me in their language.  YAWN! At the same time, I was nervous about someone taking my luggage, given the fact it had been sitting there 45 minutes.  Nonetheless, I had to be one of the very first of my flight to get through the extensive lines before rushing to the conveyor belt – only to find that my luggage WAS STILL THERE! *Hands to the sky*

Sheraton Hotel = True 5 Star Hotel

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The check-in, service, elevators, unbelievable breakfast buffet, stunning food, state-of-the-art facilities, wonderful steam room, comfortable bed, desk in the room, tub, shower, meticulous room service, shoe shine service…..not sure if I should keep going? Sheraton was exceptional.  I have to say that checking in and having them hold a crazy deposit on your debit/credit before charging you a full amount after is extremely excessive.  There has to be another way around it.

Uber and the MegaMall

This was my first time ever taking an Uber, and man, what a success! He picked me up right at the train station and took me to my destination in a hurry.  The second Uber was even better because he was very attentive and interested in my life, just as the reception at the Spa/Massage on the 5th floor was (minus the pushy-trying-to-sell-you-stuff method). Uber is the next wave of getting around, and it’s much safer, especially in a country like Thailand because taxi drivers have the worst rep of them all.

Mid-Valley MegaMall had tons of shops; however, I had to take a train and walk for 25 minutes to get there.  Oh, I should’ve taken an Uber. LOL.

The Spartan Super – the good, the bad, the ugly, the ‘COMMON, MAN!’

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The Good

Met the most wonderful muslim who had the hazel(est) of eyes that I have ever seen.  OMG! She was awesome….later, met a a cluster of Malaysians from all types of backgrounds who were just incredibly personable and charismatic.  Also, met a South African who I had a wonderful pleasure of talking to at KL Sentral before going in different directions (and who also did the race).  Ahhh…just wonderful.  Nexus International School is WONDERFUL! Perhaps a new place for employment in the future? The students there were splendid in both the English Language and in regards to their personalities.  Doors are wide open for a relocation!

The Bad

Stood outside for 1.5 hours to get into the venue.  That was a complete discombobulation on Spartan Malaysia’s side, given the fact they held registration in a very confined area.  YIKES! Starting heats were backlogged up to an hour.

The Ugly

The comradery and cooperation I’ve seen at other Tough Mudder events worldwide just wasn’t there.  It was difficult getting through the race when you had only yourself and others just minding their own business.

The ‘Common, man!”

Water, water, water! By the time the afternoon rolled around, the water supply was diminishing like crazy.  This apparently was a problem the last time the event was held in the same location.  Yes, I understand it’s a lot, but you have months to prepare a good amount of water that needed to be used for all spartans post-race.

Oh, can I mention the cooperation again? Come on, man! Honestly, indigenous Malaysians didn’t have a problem, but I do have to state the obvious whereas Chinese Malaysians, Chinese Singaporeans, or mainland Chinese (the most obvious) people just stay within their own circles.  Like NO ONE matters but only them.  I just don’t understand the “Chinese” culture, but perhaps someone can help me understand….because I’m at a loss of words with that.  However, I know the Spartan Spring that’s approaching in Thailand is going to be comical beyond belief.  These people will trample each other. LOL!!

Achieved!

Focusing on the grand of achievements, what a difficult race! Carrying a bucket of rocks 600meters and sandbags over your shoulders before trekking into a gorge was unbelievably strenuous – and I thought it was a bit over-the-top.  Hey, I get it, it’s a competition, but being a competitive event and borderline insanity should have a very fine line in between. In summary, this was the most brutal event I’ve ever endured in my lifetime. It was only 13km! I know what parts of my body I should work on going forward when the absolute BEAST comes up on October 8th.  I’m still contemplating doing it, though.  If I do, I’m going to allow myself two days rest and leave on a Tuesday rather than a Monday.  Carrying luggage after having a vicious deep-tissue massage AFTER the most difficult race in my life is a NO F*** NO!

And now, as I write this blog at the airport, I’m deeply saddened for leaving KL.  That same feeling I had when I left wondrous Bali – heading back to doomsday.  It’s hard, but opportunities are still there in Thailand.  When opportunities run dry, I’m heading for the hills – the luscious green hills of Malaysia.

Follow me…..

FB: The Arsenio Buck Show

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Instagram: The Arsenio Buck Show

And if you’re interested in listening rather than reading, http://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow

Podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/12301589

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Podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/12314079

How To Be More Interesting (Men & Women)

When I came back from Australia, I had NOTHING in common with anyone in Las Vegas. Yes, that mass of desert with a population shy of two million – all of whom never travel abroad.  I remember I was at a bar and this girl ranted, “America is the greatest country in the world!”  After hearing such lunacy, especially after living in gorgeous Melbourne and Sydney, Australia, I was appalled by that comment.  Both her and I not only had ZERO things in common, but someone else named Steven agreed with her, too.  Oh, who’s Steven? My blood brother.

And with that being said, some of the most awkward conversations came when I spoke with Las Vegans because they seriously believe the world revolves around America.  Everyone seemed uninteresting to me because in American society, you get seven days paid vacation every year.  OUCH! No wonder why they don’t know where Denmark is! Not taking shots at Americans, but some of them have mindsets such as what I see here in Thailand.

Anyways, what’s the first thing you can do to become a more interesting character?

TRAVEL!

I’m not saying save 3k$ a travel to Japan for a week.  No, no, and no.  You have the Central Americas and literally South America in your neck of the woods.  I’m not saying go transpacific or transatlantic.  Get your feet wet by checking out what’s next door before going to the other side of town.  This will increase your ability to create conversations with strangers, let alone you’ll be able to add things to conversations, too.

Expand Your Knowledge 

The more you know, the more attractive you become.  No, I’m not talking about the ‘circle of concern’ such as monotonous politics and controversial topics such as religion and Trump; I’m talking about what are you reading.  What are you doing with your life and more importantly…what are you feeding your mind? Are you working at your local grocer or are you an entrepreneur in and Asian country, teaching while managing your own website, podcast, and writing a book? See, what looks sexier?

Improving Your Personality

You are who your five closest friends are.  If you’re not happy about who you are or what you represent, it’s time to do something about your circle.  How can you go about improving your personality? Well, the world is your oyster.  Napoleon Hill said you knew a man who picked out different qualities and attributes from Abraham Lincoln and four other prominent figures at the dusk of the 1800’s.  He would go onto visualize being that person.  And you know what? It happened.  Who’s personality do you admire the most? Start figuring out what they do with their lives in terms of daily routines and adopt a system that’s suitable for you!

More on my podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/12139019

I’m Not BLACK & You’re Not WHITE.

Let that phrase sink in it bit.  We have been conditioned and categorized our entire lives like a damn canned food item at our local food market.  Labels – such as disabled, black, white, muslim, buddhist, liberal, conservative….all of which has divided this world completely over the last…150 years? Maybe?

Let’s say you came out the womb today, what would you be? What name would you have? Everything has been given to us from our baby years, to our adult years.

In Thailand, I’m just a “black man.” Therefore, the stereotypes that come with “black men” are: pimp, drug-dealer, thief, convict, hooligan, among so many other names.  However, if I was white, I would be deemed as a holy being that is rich and lovely.

I love what Muhammad Ali said during an interview four decades ago back in England.

“Momma, how come Jesus is white? Blonde hair and blue eyes? Angels are white? How come everyone in the last supper is white?”

“Momma, when we die, we will go to heaven, right?”

Mother answers, “naturally we will.”

Muhammad Ali, “well are there any black angels up there?”

“Oh, I know.  The white angels are up in heaven, too.  So, the black angels are in the kitchen preparing the milk and honey.”

-Tarzan was the king of the jungle in Africa – he was white.

-Miss America was always white.

-The angel fruitcake was the white cake and the devil fruitcake was the chocolate cake.

-The president lives in the white house.

-Snow White was white.

On The Other Hand

-The ugly duckling was a black duck.

-The black cat was bad luck.

-If I’m going to threaten you I’m going to blackmail you.

At the end of the conversation, he told his story about winning an olympic gold medal and went back home standing tall – hoping to get something to eat in a restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky where things weren’t integrated back then.  He sat down, ordered….and the woman said, “we don’t serve negroes.”

He replied, “well I don’t eat them either! Go back there and fix me my food!”

*Laughter*

He was thrown out…but the point I’m trying to make is this has been imbedded in our subconscious minds since the picture was invented.  How come every love story revolves around a white character?  Honestly, sit down and think about it.  The Jetsons, the Flintstones, the Rugrats, Doug Funny, Salute Your Shorts, Are You Afraid of The Dark, Nickelodeon was an extremely white network.  However, the only somewhat “black” cartoon I saw while I was young was Bebe’s Kids.  A bunch of bad a$$ African Americans.

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I wish I was making this up, but unfortunately….it’s true.

This labelling has to be abolished in humanity wants to move forward.  Is it going to be overnight – NO! It’s going to take an individual sticking up for other individuals.  If you see someone being mistreated anywhere for their gender, creed, color, it’s up to you to butt in and do what’s right.  When these things start to happen, the influences that are left behind on passerbys will stick with them forever.

One person at a time.

Do the right thing.

Thank You 

Thank you for everyone viewing my post about the seemingly endless racial discrimination that happens in countries such as Thailand and all across Asia. 
What you focus on and think about, you bring about. My website/blog’s primary focus is not about controversial topics that cannot be changed; on the other hand, it’s about uniting all beings and citizens of the world and focus on collaboration. Focus on love. Focus on harmonizing prosperity. Focus on the beauty that this gorgeous planet has to offer. 

Some things cannot be changed. Only if the culture is changed, then being can stop the racism based on someone’s religion, culture, creed or color. 

Going forward, it’s time to start spreading the love again. If you are all knew, this is about personal development and unity. 

With that being said, it’s time to get back to living, living and laughing. 

Joe De Sena – Co-Founder of Spartan/Death Race & His Story Behind It All

I was talking to someone on my blog earlier about ultramarathons after being introduced to them by a passerby at my investing job (better way of just tying myself down to ‘job’), and the madness that goes on in these particular marathons are bananas.

Joe De Sena, in particular, finished the Badwater Ultramarathon (135 miles at over 120°F/49°C), Vermont 100, and Lake Placid Ironman—all in the same week.

Ummm…..what did you just say?

Let’s put these races into perspective, shall we?

 

The hottest air temperature ever recorded in Death Valley was 134 °F (56.7 °C).  Bad water is the lowest point in the continental United States, which is Death Valley.

I’ll.  Be.  Damned!

Watching this really hit that soft spot in me.  Seeing people overcome tragedy, MS, along with so many disorders that wreak havoc on the lives of millions worldwide….and be able to commit to finishing the ironman is the most incredible GIFT ever.  What does this do? Well, it’s just like Tough Mudder, right? My friends always said, “why did you do it?”  Because since that, my life has completely changed because I had a fortified mental barrier that was tormenting my life and degrading myself, my true self-worth.

What’s even more incredible is the first person who crossed the finish line for the women was Heather Jackson (proud Herbalife sponsor).  Congrats, Heather!

Now back to Joe.  I don’t even have to show the Vermont 100 because you obviously know it deals with 100 miles/km.  I will show you an excerpt from Tim Ferris’ book – The Tools of Titans…

“WHY HE STARTED TACKLING INSANE EVENTS WHILE WORKING ON WALL STREET

“You make and lose $30K, $40K in minutes screwing up an order or having customers tell you that they are no longer going to deal with you. It was very stressful business. [I wanted] to get back to the core of life. . . . [A friend] said, ‘Well, you could die. There is this one—the Iditarod in Alaska. They do it in the middle of the winter, it is by foot, and it is 30 below. But, you have to —’ ‘Sign me up. I have to do it.’ I had to get back to this place where you just want water, food, and shelter. All the craziness of my life—this Wall Street life I had taken on—would go away, would melt away.”

Excerpt From: Timothy Ferriss & Arnold Schwarzenegger. “Tools of Titans.” iBooks. https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/tools-of-titans/id1149615754?mt=11

These types of thing don’t test you, they break you.  All the problems in all the categories of your life are literally up in flames during races like these.  After you finish this gauntlet, you go back home and realize that those seemingly, monstrous problems are now microscopic compared to the rampant fatigue, faint-feeling you had had during the race.

This is why I do it.  This is why in April I’m doing Tough Mudder in Arizona/April.  Spartan Race – Singapore/May. Spartan Race – Malaysia/3rd quarter.  Tough Mudder – Bali, Indonesia/October.

I will continue to break myself….