Jan 5, 2021

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Scot: What are you getting in Taco Bell that you're paying $20 for?

Troy: Sometimes it's just $20. We got me, we got Laura, and we got three dogs in the car. Come on.

Scot: What do the dogs get at Taco Bell?

Troy: They all get a side of steak.

Scot: Do they really?

Troy: You can order a side of steak. They will give you steak in a little cup. They each get their little cup of steak, and they love it.

Scot: Wow. As a dog owner, do you get stuff for dogs at other drive-thrus?

Troy: Unfortunately, yes.

Scot: What are the other things?

Troy: In McDonald's, they get a cheeseburger, no onions, no pickles. We have stopped giving them the bun with it. They just get the meat. At Arby's, Arby's roast beef sliders. They love roast beef sliders. Yeah, it's not good. I'm not recommending this to other dog owners. This is what they get. This is our spoiled dogs here.

Scot: That's fabulous. Anything else?

Troy: Oh, and then there's, in Heber . . . I don't know if you ever go down to Heber, but there's the place on Main Street there. It's called Dairy Keen. It's a place they've got great shakes and stuff. There, they get corn dogs.

And so what happens is when they see dogs in your car at that place, they're like, "Oh, would your dogs like a treat?" And we're like, "Sure." And so they hand us these little dog biscuits. We hand them to the dogs, and they just kind of sit there with it in their mouth or they spit it out, because then they're just waiting for their corndogs. I'm just like, "These dogs are so spoiled."

Scot: "Who Cares About Men's Health" provides information, inspiration, and motivation to better understand and engage in your health so you feel better today and in the future. Plus, it's a place where we can talk about health as men. There are not a lot of those opportunities out there. We kind of get a bad rap for not wanting to talk about it, but it's something we should talk about and that's why we do it here.

My name is Scot. And I like to proclaim loud and proud I care about men's health.

Troy: And I'm Troy and I am also proud that I care about men's health.

Scot: Thank you for joining us on the first show of 2021. Fingers crossed for a better 2021. I went up to that little New Year's baby. You know the visual, right? The old guy wearing the old year sash, the baby wearing the new year, and I just whispered in its ear, I just said, "You better be better than this."

Troy: Like, "Come on, baby."

Scot: Yeah, I'm like threatening 2021 already. 2021 is barely a week old and I'm up in its face saying, "You better be better than this."

Troy: 2021 hasn't even learned to speak yet and you're threatening it. That's what it's come to. That's how desperate we are.

Scot: All right. So today's show is talking about a concept called cognitive load. Heh-heh-heh. I totally said cognitive load.

Troy: You totally said cognitive load.

Scot: Yeah. I don't know if you've run into this. So this is what this is all about, difficulty concentrating on something. Maybe you used to be an avid reader and you pick up a book and you can barely get through a page because you find yourself totally distracted, or you find yourself totally distracted in your work or your personal life. You can't focus on one thing for any amount of time. There could be an explanation for that, and cognitive load will help us find what that explanation is.

Troy: Is that Beavis or Butt-Head?

Scot: That's like the one impersonation I can do, is those two guys.

Troy: But which guy is it that laughs like that? That's Butt-Head, right?

Scot: That's Butt-Head.

Troy: That's Butt-Head. Okay. This is like a total '90s flashback.

Scot: "Heh-heh-heh, you said cognitive load." "Cognitive load. It rules." Anyway.

Troy: Was this like your '90s, doing Beavis and Butt-Head impersonations? I like it. Total throwback. I've got to give a shoutout to James Maynard and Barry Coles here, two my friends from my youth. And that just reminded me of watching "Beavis and Butt-Head" with them. So thanks for that, Scot.

Scot: You're welcome. All right. So I digress. Anyway.

Troy: Anyway.

Scot: This is perfect. This perfectly explains what I'm trying to talk about, trouble focusing, trouble staying on task.

Troy: Exactly. I was going to say, does podcasting count here too? Because clearly, we're distracted.

Scot: So this whole concept is if you've been having a hard time focusing, or just even getting things done, paying attention, you feel more mentally exhausted than normal, it could be because of COVID-19. And we're going to use this concept of cognitive load to explain that.

So, during the past year, a lot of people's routines, many of us, that they've had for years have been significantly disrupted. The power of routine can actually help save mental energy. So all these new routines means more cognitive load. And what that means is you start experiencing these symptoms of concentrating or feeling more exhausted or you can't focus on a book.

And you probably have other things in your life that used to be routine and it seems pretty simple the new way that you have to do it, but it still takes over that working memory. That's tiring, always thinking about, "How am I going to do this? How am I going to do that?" That's why we have habit and routine.

So thing number one is if you have a lot of new routines in your life, and you find yourself having the troubles that we talked about at the top of the episode, we'll talk about how to solve that, but that could be one of the reasons why you're experiencing some of that mental fatigue or inability to concentrate.

Troy: Scot, I think one thing we always used to complain about, but I think we all miss now is commuting. I mean, that was a time in the day that was a part of our routine. And you've mentioned it before, how it was sort of like your separation, like moving from home life to work life, and then the return to home life and leaving work behind. Well, that commute is now gone.

And that was just something, I think, for so many of us . . . that drive is second nature, or that bus ride, or train ride or whatever. And you just kind of turn your brain off, and you'll listen to a podcast, like "Who Cares About Men's Health," or you listen to an audiobook, or music, or whatever. And that's gone. Just having that piece of routine out of our lives, I think, has also contributed a little bit to that mental load.

Scot: Number two, emotions can also interfere with your working memory, that precious resource that we've talked about. Lord knows we've been through ups and downs with emotions, and research has supported this. So, if something stressful is going on in your life, it can make it hard to concentrate because that memory that you want to reserve for solving problems, that working memory, can be impacted by your emotions.

So there's a lot that's stressful right now. COVID, how we're approaching life with COVID, what's going on in the government. Some people got new pets, and as rewarding as those are, those also can be stressful and interfere with that.

So emotions can also interfere with that working memory capacity. And I think a great example of that is if you've ever had a fight with your significant other before you've gone into work. It just kind of sits and chills in your brain and you can't get it out. That distracts you. That impacts your ability to use that memory for what it's meant to do, which is solve problems.

Troy: Yeah. And I think that's a reality we really need to acknowledge, that just being in such close proximity to so many family members, where before there was work life and there was home life. I think that's impacted a lot of people.

It's so funny. I got a holiday card from one of my friends from med school, from his wife. She'd clearly written it because she's pretty funny. But she said something about days in quarantine with her two boys, X number of days, days, homeschool with the two boys, X number of days, 76 days in home isolation with the boys, priceless. It's just like really priceless.

This is what we've been dealing with, whether you've got your kids at home or whatever. A whole lot of emotions come with family. And that family time has, in many cases, tripled or quadrupled when you really look at the waking hours in a day spent with family members, and that comes with a lot of emotion. A lot of those are great emotions. A lot of those are not so great. So that's, I think, been a big factor in the cognitive loading.

Scot: And, of course, all the other emotions that have come with this whole situation. So that can that can really impact your ability to concentrate and solve problems as well.

And another thing that can impact that working memory, that memory that's so important to thinking and reasoning through stuff and really being able to focus, is stuff that's not relevant to what you're currently working on. And they call this extraneous cognitive load.

I'm going to use my table saw analogy to this. One time, I was out working on a table saw cutting a piece of wood. I got done, I looked down at the saw, I saw where my fingers were, and they were dangerously close to the blade.

Troy: That is the number one source of severed fingers, by the way, Scot. But anyway, go on.

Scot: Is it?

Troy: Yes. Number one that I see, yes.

Scot: Anyway, it terrified me and I'm like, "How did this happen? How was I not paying attention?" And what it was, was I had a bunch of other stuff going on in my brain at the same time. So, when I cut that next piece of wood, I'm like, "All right. I've got to focus on that blade. There is nothing else in my world other than that blade right now." And I'll tell you, I had a moment of Zen and peace that I've never had in my life when I shut everything else off and I just focused on the blade.

All that other stuff that's not relevant that's constantly running in the background, whether we realize it or not, was finally shut off. And my brain was like, "Ahh." It was probably only working at about 10% capacity, that working memory.

So thinking about the next project or the next thing on the to-do list while you're doing something else is stuff that's not relevant to what you're currently working on. And when you do that, it impacts your ability to concentrate and focus. It impacts that working memory.

Wondering what the dog is doing in the other room. Normally, you're at work, so that's not a concern, but when you're at home, it could be a concern. Those are distractions we didn't have at the office. Or thinking about the news of the day or your future. So, if there's stuff that's not relevant to what you're currently working on, that takes up some of that cognitive capacity as well.

How do you find that impacts you, Troy, that stuff that's not relevant to what you're currently working on?

Troy: Well, I was going to say, Scot, my takeaway from your story is that I should really be doing very dangerous tasks because it requires my undivided attention and I can put all that other stuff away.

Scot: Well, it's the power of mindfulness really.

Troy: It really is.

Scot: I learned mindfulness through that almost accident.

Troy: Yeah, I was going to say it's mindfulness out of necessity.

Scot: Exactly.

Troy: You have to become very focused in that moment so you don't take your finger off. Because like I said, we see a lot of severed fingers from table saws.

Scot: What do you catch yourself thinking about that's not relevant to what you're currently working on? Do you have an example of that?

Troy: Well, let's see, Scot. I have four dogs and how many cats. I just lose track of the cats, but . . .

Scot: At the end of the day, you're doing a cat hunt to track them all down.

Troy: Trying to find cats. Yeah, like one day, you're working from home and it's windy outside and the front door hasn't closed completely and the door blows open. And I go downstairs just taking a break from doing some stuff on my computer, and I look, and one of the kittens is just sitting there at a wide-open door looking outside.

Laura's home and I yelled to Laura, "Laura, the door is open. Count the cats." And so I run around counting cats to make sure no one escaped. And I immediately went outside to do a quick search to see if any of the kittens ran outside, and it's freezing cold outside. So that's one of my distractions working from home. When you've got pets . . .

Scot: Stuff that's not relevant.

Troy: Yeah, it's the stuff that's not relevant, that then becomes relevant that would not have happened otherwise. Because if you would have been at work, the front door would have been locked, the wind would not have blown the door open. But because you're home, the wind blows the door open and cats are looking out the door wondering, "Maybe I should go explore out there. That's where all those cool birds are I've been watching out the window." You're just like, "Oh, great. Now I'm going to lose a bunch of cats."

So, yeah, those are, I think, the inevitable distractions if you have pets, or you have kids, or whatever else. It's just everything you could kind of just put on the back burner and not think about, it's there with you 24/7 now.

Scot: Right. It's taking up that precious, precious working memory capacity and our ability to focus, and it's also making us mentally fatigued.

What are some of the solutions? Here are some of the solutions.

By the way, I have to give credit to Christian Jarrett from bbc.com, who actually wrote the article that this conversation is based on. We'll put a link to the article in our show notes.

But the solutions. The article goes on to say, "Normally, we adapt well to new situations, but these aren't normal times because there are so many things that are new. There are so many extraneous distractions and emotions are running high." So what can you do?

One of the solutions was start to create consistency where you can and eliminate the other factors that impact our working memory. So double down on the routines. If your routines have been blown up and you haven't developed a new routine, every time you have to think about what you're doing if you don't have a routine, you're using some of that cognitive . . . you're experiencing cognitive load. So sit down and develop some new routines. It could take some upfront work, but it could help get your life more back on autopilot.

Number two, stress management. We're going to tie right back into the core four on this one, Troy. So you've got to manage that stress to control those emotions. Eating well, exercise, and a bedtime routine, if you've kind of abandoned your bedtime routine. It's always great to see even when somebody else is giving us advice how it comes back to the core four.

And I'm going to add build in a time where you give your brain a break from the world and what's going on. I think you need to build in those times in your day. I think at work we used to have them. It was called going to a co-worker's office and shooting the shit, but we don't have that anymore.

So that's my thought on stress management. Do you have anything you'd like to throw into stress management?

Troy: Yeah. I have come to value routines more and more. And what I do . . . we've joked about my little day planner before, but I will try and write out my day, and I will try and at least have some structure to it. I say, "Okay, this is when I'm going to go running. This is when I'm kind of prepping for the day. This is when I'm going to work on this project. This is when I'm working on this project," just so there's some of that routine and that structure. So I'm kind of taking it off my mind, that cognitive load of, "Okay, I've got three hours now to work on stuff. What am I going to do?"

And it also helps, too, to offload my mind when I have things that I just keep thinking about and I just keep thinking about, like, "I need to do this. I need to do this." I just write it down. I'm like, "Okay, I'm not going to worry about it today. This is something I'm going to deal with on Wednesday. I'm going to send this email to this person and address this," or do this task, or whatever. I think that helps me.

I think the bedtime routine has become a little more important to me where now I'm kind of like, "Okay, at this time, I want to start winding down," and then have a little time just to sit in bed and read a book before falling asleep just to incorporate even more of a routine into that.

So that'd be my advice. Anything you can do to structure your day, writing things down, writing tasks down so it's not always on your mind, moving that off so you're not thinking about it. That's taking up some of that cognitive load.

And then like you said, Scot, the routines either at bedtime or morning or wherever you can have some sort of routine, some sort of structure that, again, sort of puts you on autopilot and relieves some of that cognitive load you're experiencing.

Scot: How about for stress management? What's your solution there? Eating well? Exercise?

Troy: Stress management, again, we talk so much about exercise on here. I think, Scot, we're probably a little biased toward exercise, because I think we both lean heavily on that for stress management.

But you may have found other stuff that works for you, too. Whether it's just gaming, or watching sports, or talking with your spouse, or just taking your dogs for a walk, or just watching "Friends," streaming it for the 40th time on Netflix, or whatever. Whatever it is, do not feel guilty about taking that time and working that into the day. I think that's essential now more than ever, just in terms of relieving that cognitive load and just turning your brain off for a while.

Scot: And take a look at your diet as well. I take a look at my diet and that's a big part of stress management, is eating that nutritious food. I probably could work on that.

Troy: Yeah, it's challenging because sometimes that becomes stressful in itself because there's the guilt of not eating well and then . . . I don't know. But I agree. I feel less stressed when I'm eating healthy. I just feel better. My body feels better. I think that just contributes to an overall sense of wellness.

Scot: And number three, solution number three on how to control your cognitive load, is tune out that extraneous cognitive load. So put a little bit more effort into organizing your time. Troy talked about routine already, but if you put a little effort into organizing your time, then you've got your dedicated times to do the things you want to do during that dedicated time.

I'm going to give you a goofy little thing I discovered that helps me. I have a timer I set for 15 minutes, and I have these 15-minute blocks that I work in. I start the timer, and during those 15 minutes, I tell myself, "This is what you're focusing on." And if I catch my mind wandering to something else, I gently say, "No, we're focusing on this." In the next 15 minutes, what can I do to move this thing forward so I feel like I've accomplished something at the end of the 15 minutes?

It keeps me from getting distracted, to want to go to Facebook or Amazon.com. And when the alarm goes off, then I've got five minutes that I can do something else, whether that's a little bit of exercise or whatever.

But it's very Pavlovian. I hear the beep of the timer. Listen to this. I hear this and I know it's work time. That means, "Brain, it's time to focus on this one thing." And when it goes off, then it's cool to focus on something else.

So that's what I do to try to tune out that extraneous cognitive load to really just focus on the one thing, just to do one thing at a time. Email time is email time, and then even beyond that, when it's time to be interacting with the dog, or if you have kids, you then put the phone down and it's kids time.

So just really try to be, I think, cognizant of, "What am I doing with this time right now? I'm going to be mindful in the moment and dedicate my time to this thing right now."

Troy: And for me, it's not just creating that time but also creating that space. That was a big adjustment for me, again, just with the distractions at home and Laura working from home as well.

Right now, I'm recording up in a little bedroom, a little spare bedroom we have. I'm not recording in my office because my office is downstairs near the TV and I can hear everything going on down there when I'm recording there. But this has become my workspace.

I've got a little desk here, a little fold-up desk. You should have seen the setup I had here for months. I finally gave in and I said, "I'm going be doing this for a while longer. I might as well buy a decent desk." But I had like a little patio table that I had in here and a chair I'd set up and some pillows I was setting stuff on so it was sitting high enough. So it's kind of a makeshift arrangement, but I think having that space also away from the distractions where you can focus . . .

And when you go in that room . . . for me, when I come in this room, it's like, "Okay, this is where I do work. This is my workroom." And the door is shut. I don't have pets in here or anything. I'm just working on stuff, and that seems to help as well.

Scot: So, at the end of it all, if you or you know somebody and at the end of the day, somebody in your life says, "Oh, I'm just so tired. I'm so mentally exhausted and I don't even know why," these are some of those hidden things that you might not realize.

So routines. Do you have routines in place or have they been disrupted, and are you constantly needing to manage those things that you do as opposed to being able to put them on autopilot? Have you had a particularly emotional day for one reason or another? That can cause that mental fatigue or lack of focus if you hear somebody say that you think that yourself. Are you trying to do too many things at once? Do you have that extraneous cognitive load?

If you hear yourself saying, "I'm distracted. I'm mentally tired," those are the places to look, at least according to this article by Christian Jarrett at bbc.com. And the link to that will be in the show notes.

Final thoughts?

Troy: I think the takeaway from this, too, is just to recognize that this is a burden. This is something that we're all experiencing. And if you're feeling distracted, there's a good reason for it. If you're feeling mental fatigue, there's a very good reason for it. And these are some ways to potentially address it, but the first step, I think, is just acknowledging that this is real and it's something so many of us are experiencing and don't feel guilty about it.

I loved that Dr. Ben Chan talked a lot about this about a month ago on our podcast, just about giving yourself some slack. Cut yourself some slack. Cut other people some slack. Recognize what they're going through, that they're experiencing the same cognitive load and cognitive fatigue as a result of their routines being disrupted. So I think that's a big takeaway too.

Scot: I think at the end of it all, us guys aren't very good at necessarily recognizing these types of things. So I think just becoming aware of it is the first step. Hopefully, this gave you some information into the workings of some stuff you might not have even realized existed that is impacting your mental health, your ability to concentrate, your ability to focus, your ability to just even feel well. So . . .

Yeah, that's how you end a segment. You just go, "So," and then you play a sounder.

Troy: I was waiting for a "Beavis and Butt-Head" impersonation to end it.

Scot: Oh, that's a good idea. So there you go. That's all you need to know about cognitive load. Heh-heh-heh.

Troy: See, I can't do it. I can't do as well as you can, Scot.

Scot: I think you're a probably better Beavis than Butt-Head, really.

Troy: I don't know what I am.

Scot: Let's hear your Beavis.

Troy: Heh-heh-heh.

Scot: Yeah, you're a better Beavis.

Troy: I'm a better Beavis than a Butt-Head. I'm not sure what that says about us. I'm sure there's some sort of online quiz. "Are you a Beavis or a Butt-Head?" And I don't know what it tells you about yourself, but whatever it is, I'm a better Beavis.

Scot: I think I'm pretty good at both actually. "Yeah, you are. You're really good."

Troy: But personality-wise, who are you more? Or is there a real difference in their personality?

Scot: Wow, this is getting deep.

Troy: They seem pretty similar to me. Beavis just seems kind of frantic and all over the place where Butt-Head is maybe a little more cerebral than Beavis. Beavis is your friend that would just be like . . . you kind of like hanging out with him because they were just hilarious and you never knew what they were going to do, but they kind of scared you too. Butt-Head, I think I'd be a little more comfortable hanging out with him.

Scot: He's a little more chill.

Troy: He's a little more chill.

Scot: Good Lord. This is a disaster.

Troy: It's a total train wreck. See, this is the proof of everything we talked about. We can't even focus long enough to talk about cognitive load, because we don't have enough cognitive space to talk about it.

Scot: I think it also highlights the necessity to being able to offload some of that and take time out to just let it deprogram.

Troy: To do a Beavis and Butt-Head impersonation. To just go with it. I'm thoroughly enjoying this. My mind is back to 1992 hanging out with James Maynard and Barry Coles and watching "Beavis and Butt-Head." That's where my mind is right now, and that's a good place. That's cool. I like it.

I would sing it, but I . . .

Scot: Na-na-na-na-na.

Troy: Thunder!

Scot: Troy, do the honors of singing "You've been Thunder debunked."

Troy: I can't do that, Scot. Come on.

Scot: Thunder debunked!

Troy: I have to maintain some sense of dignity.

Scot: Thunder debunked!

Troy: I'm sorry. I think you already did it.

Scot: All right. We're back with Thunder Jalili. He's our resident nutrition experts, and we're going to throw out another one of these things you might see on the internet or something that's common sense or something that you've believed for a long time, and we're going to find out if it's truth or if Thunder is going to debunk it on "Truth or Thunder Debunked?"

Thunder, are you ready for your challenge today?

Thunder: I hope so.

Scot: All right. Does eating at night really cause weight gains? Because there's I think this wisdom that you eat late at night and that's what's going to cause weight gains, if you're eating like right before bed or something like that. So is that truth or are you going to Thunder debunk it today?

Thunder: No, I actually think there's truth to that.

Scot: What?

Troy: Good. I was going to say don't tell me this is not true because my whole takeaway from all our discussions is this is true.

Scot: All right. Well, go ahead and explain.

Thunder: We talked in earlier podcasts about kind of the length of time that you eat in terms of what time do you eat in the morning when you wake up, and then kind of when in the day you stop eating. And as we eat, our insulin levels go up and that's kind of the hormone to store nutrients like fat.

So people that do that late-night snacking, they've got to have something at 10:00, 11:00, 12:00 at night, maybe even later, they're kind of extending that whole time that they're putting calories into their system, and their insulin levels are high. So that's a recipe for storing fat.

One of the ways that we would advise somebody if they want to try to lose weight . . . what are some easy steps I can think about? Well, one of these steps is try not to eat after dinner. Then you kind of have a longer time period where your body can go into that natural fasting state overnight and that helps us control our weight.

Troy: See, I'm so glad you said that Thunder because I have now . . . after all of these discussions we've had about this, I now watch the clock. I don't eat after 8:00 and sometimes it is a rush to get calories in before 8:00 p.m. It's a little weird, but sometimes I am just like, "Okay, I've got to eat. I've got to eat. Okay, it's 8:00. I'm done."

Thunder: It all depends on your work schedule too. I know some people work later, so you've got to balance all that stuff. But yeah, just try to shut it down after dinner.

Scot: So, if you do work later, though . . . let's say you don't start eating until 6:00 pm and you shut it down at midnight. Your eating at night, is that going to cause weight gains? Is there something about the night, or is it really just about that time of eating/not eating?

Thunder: There's nothing special about night. It's about the time period.

Troy: So maybe it was Thunder debunked then. It's nothing about the night in general. It's more just that period between when you last ate and when you eat again.

Thunder: Yeah. Oh, that's true. I guess in that sense it could be debunked. I guess I was assuming people were snacking at night.

Scot: Boom, I Thunder Debunked a Thunder Debunker.

Thunder: Yeah, this is an embarrassing day for me.

Troy: So it really is . . . that has been debunked. Let's say you work just a late schedule, or you're a night owl, and you like to have a midnight snack, but you sleep in or you just don't eat in the morning. You get up you exercise and you don't eat until lunch, then that's 12 hours between eating periods right there.

Thunder: Yeah. Your timetable definitely makes a difference whether the night thing is an issue or not.

Now, if I can defend myself for a moment, though, most people do have kind of a more regular schedule of having three meals more or less a day and then throwing snacks in there. So the night snacking . . . when I hear that, I assume that the person is kind of doing that normal three-meals-a-day thing.

But yeah, to your point, if that's not you, if your first meal doesn't come until 4:00 in the afternoon, then by all means, eat at 10:00.

Scot: All right. Well, that was that was a fun one to work through. It started out as truth, but then kind of turned into Thunder Debunked. There's nothing special about late-night eating that is bad for you. It's more about are you keeping your eating within certain time limits. Like, are you eating only 8 out of 24 hours, or 12 out of 24 hours? That's what makes the difference there.

All right, Thunder. Thank you very much for another great edition of "Truth or Thunder Debunked?"

Time for "Just Going To Leave This Here." It might have something to do with health or it might be something totally random. Troy, why don't you go ahead and start off the first "Just Going To Leave This Here" of 2021?

Troy: Scot, I texted you about this experience, but I'm just going to leave this here about the bizarre experience I had the other evening. I had to run into the store, into the grocery store, and it was in the evening. I ran in there and I'm going in there just grabbing a few things. I'd been in the store about five minutes. There weren't a lot of people there.

I get to the self-checkout area, and I realized I have gone through the entire store and collected everything I'm buying, six or seven items, and I didn't have a mask on. It was the most bizarre feeling. I was suddenly just so embarrassed and ashamed.

And there were some other people there and I noticed the looks from them. I hadn't even thought about it up to that point. I'm embarrassed even to mention this. Here I am, a physician, we've got masks and all this, "We should be masking," and I just I walked in there. I didn't even realize I didn't have a mask on.

It was like the equivalent of . . . I don't know if you've ever had these dreams, Scot, where you're out in public and you realize you forgot to put your pants on. It is like the 2020 equivalent of the stress dream about being in public and you don't have pants on, and what do you do? And I seriously had that thought, "Well, do I pull my shirt up over my face? Do I put my arm over my face? What do I do?"

I just scanned everything as fast as I could. I didn't even put it in bags. I just scanned it, threw in my cart, and busted out of there. It was kind of a bizarre experience.

Scot: Yeah, it's like do you cover your hand with your mouth?

Troy: Yeah. Well, that's what it was.

Scot: Do you grab one of the plastic bags and put that over your head?

Troy: I thought about it. I was like, "Well, there's a plastic bag. I can put that on my mouth." And I thought, "Well, that's not a good idea. I won't be able to breathe, but at least I won't be spreading COVID." That's too funny.

Scot: Too funny. Wow.

Troy: Yeah, it was weird.

Scot: Just going to leave this here. I told you the last "Just Going To Leave This Here" for 2020 was I have gotten into puzzling, and I finally completed that puzzle.

Troy: Oh, well done.

Scot: I really enjoyed it. I'm just really bummed out, Troy, that you don't enjoy puzzles more because . . .

Troy: I don't. Did want me to join you for puzzling? Is that what you're trying to say?

Scot: No, you don't have to join me for puzzling, but I just wanted to say I finished it. I enjoyed it. The last part I didn't finish pretty, if it was like the World Puzzling Championship. It wasn't like I was looking at the pieces and putting them all together. It's a beautiful mine style.

I'm down to, like, 25 pieces that all kind of look the same. So one by one, I'd find an area on the puzzle and I'd go, "This way? No. This way? No. This way? Nope. This way? No." And I'd put it off to the side and I'd go to puzzle piece number 24. "This way? This way?" And that's how I finished the puzzle.

Troy: Scot, I was going to say when I don't do a pretty job of finishing a puzzle, it usually means I'm just taking pieces and shoving them in places where they don't actually go. Maybe trimming the edge a little bit, being like, "Okay, that works. Okay, that's good enough."

Scot: Where's the hammer? Just hammer them in.

Troy: Just put it in. Yeah, we're done. That's my way of finishing a puzzle and not doing it very nicely.

Scot: All right. Time to say the things you say at the end of podcasts because we are at the end of our podcast. First of all, please subscribe. We're on all the popular podcatchers, including iTunes, Spotify, Podbean.

Troy: Podbean? That's a new one for me.

Scot: I don't know. I don't even know if that's a podcatcher.

Troy: Did you just make that one up?

Scot: No, it's a thing. I just don't know if that's the place where people listen.

Troy: Stitcher. I've got to throw out Pocket Casts every time. I'm going to throw it every time, Scot, because I know you hate it, but Pocket Casts.

Scot: Yeah, wherever you listen, you can get us. That's what I'm trying to say.

And if you want to reach out to us . . .

Troy: You can contact us at hello@thescoperadio.com. Also, give us a call on our listener line, 601-55SCOPE. We'd love to hear from you and get your questions.

Thanks for listening and thanks for caring about men's health.

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