In my first post about applying Nassim Taleb’s barbell strategy, I proposed selecting books and technologies that are either very old or very new. In the world of entertainment, we can take a different type of barbell approach. For entertainment items, I suggest trying the best and the worst. You can safely ignore everything in between because outside of those extremes you are left with the normal, the mediocre, and the boring. This is not the type of barbell Taleb suggests, because instead of mitigating risk but still having upside potential, we are mitigating boredom but still having interesting potential.
By “entertainment items,” I mean those things you take in for temporary enjoyment, to gain experiences, and to while away time. They are the beers you drink with friends, the movies you watch, the restaurants you try. You don’t gain any actionable knowledge from these, but you do hone your tastes for what you like and don’t like. Once you have tried the best and the worst, you will be better able to form an opinion about all the others you try.
This is what you do for beer. Go to a beer review site. Find the top reviewed beers like this list. Find the bottom reviewed beers like this list. Drink beers only from those two lists. You will develop a heightened sense of what constitutes good beer and bad beer. You will experience the highs and the lows. It will all be interesting, and you will be avoiding boring, mediocre beers.