Stoa Digest #14: It's the Final Countdown
And still we stand tall, cause maybe they've seen us
This might be our longest fellow-centered Digest yet.
Warning: This Digest got too long for your e-Mail, so you will have to come find us on Substack to get to the good bits! 😊
Highlight of the Week
The Oracle of Omnipresence
We had our final weekend of classes this past weekend, and I’ve spent most of that time reminiscing. I had high hopes for my time at Stoa, and was certain that the community would be a massive part of the experience. Reality far and away surpassed those expectations.
From literally Day 1, each and every one of you have blown me away...
...and I am truly grateful for our paths crossing. I can confidently say I’ve grown as a result of meeting you.
There are about 190 Stoa fellows across three cohorts. I’ve had the privilege of meeting 32 of them in person, across three cities.
Two of those cities are easy to explain. I’ve lived in Delhi (or Gurgaon) for a vast majority of my life, and completed my undergrad in Bombay.
Bangalore’s story is a lot more interesting.
I’ve never visited the city before, and not for a lack of trying. In the years since 2015, I’ve made about eight different attempts to visit the city. All of them fell apart. You’ll understand then, why I was a little superstitious about finally making it to the city last month. Heck, I refused to make plans with anyone until the landing gear touched tarmac.
Fortunately, I made it! And Bangalore (and the Bangalore fellows) welcomed me with open arms.
Yeah... I’m pretty sure I’ve been adopted.
Special gratitude to Abdul for introducing me to breakfast dates and the anxiety of oversleeping and missing them. It’s a testament to sir’s ability to hold a conversation that we met twice and have zero pictures to show for it.
Even special-er gratitude to Kanchan for giving me multiple reasons for a return trip, and her near-comprehensive knowledge of where to eat in the city. Seriously folks, my every question was responded to with at least three different options. My stomach salutes you, ma’am!
Also to the people asking, I’m not omnipresent. Not yet.
I just seem to have a weird knack for being in the right place at the right time?
A quick final word before I leave you.
We joined our respective cohorts as a path to self-improvement - both personally and professionally. Mira shared a Maya Angelou quote with me, which fits well here:
“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”
With a particular kind of privilege in mind, I personally think Abdul puts it best.
While I’m not perfect and I’m certainly no one to preach, you have my word that this is a commitment I will keep and encourage my fellow men to follow through with, too.
With our powers combined, I have no doubt that the bond of this community will grow stronger, even as it grows itself.
I’ll see you all soon, either in-person or over Zoom.
Fellow Spotlight 🦁
Sindhu on Twitter ; Sindhu on LinkedIn
Sidenote: She’s still figuring out what/how to Twitter, so if you have tips, send them her way!
Birthday Parttaaayy! 🥳 🎂
Neeraj Bholani & Sameer Mohan - 13th September
Chaitanya Marwaha - 14th September
Namrath Shetty & Sumit Singh - 15th September
Pravgya Mundra - 17th September
Purnima Manghnani - 19th September
Community Buzz 🐝
Saumya & Ujwal from Cohort 3 found potential co-founders in each other and built some ‘rishtay’ out.
What are relationships with unpaid debt called?
They’ll tell you.
Our boys went off & sent in an application to Y Combinator, and will probably conduct loads more User Research interviews through us & the community that is Stoa.
So, I hope you have your cheerleading outfits on, because our days are numbered.
Rishabh asked a very good question about writing JDs for Generalists, and didn’t make a thread about it - so you’ll find some very good insight about the conversation it started here
Shonik and Ishan deserve all of our appreciation for being ‘Gods’ every time we play Mafia. We held our biggest ever Mafia night this past weekend, and it was pure & utter chaos but also intense fun for a whole 4+ hours. So if you haven’t already, please come join the Wolf/Mafia server! 🐺
There’s a Fantasy Premier League running, if you want in & are new, please check in on the #sports channel & post a message. We’re sure one of the many participants will help!
For those interested, there was also a crowdsourced Meditation & Mindfulness server initiated off of our own server. Hit up one of these folks for access!
From the desk of Mr. Pranav Manie
If like Sriram, you’ve also been wondering why on earth Cohort 2 keeps using “+43” any chance they get Pranav Manie(from Cohort 3) decided to write an explainer for you.
A few days ago, the lounge room was bifurcated into yet another thread by virtue of Shelton and Nicaia’s repeated requests. The reason for this was a seemingly harmless, yet complete Pandora’s Box of a question. C4 fellow Sriram Natraj, naturally intrigued by inside references that seemed to make the server look like a cult to him, asked:
“Wait what is +43?”
This question is the result of a virus incubated in the unknowing minds of all the attendees in your standard Stoa class. Legend says that it started in C2 because, in a certain crypto enthusiast’s words: “....you’ll often find people agreeing with each other with a +1; that’s great and all, but it lacked a little imagination for yours truly...” The person went on to say that he used a bunch of random numbers to replace “+1”, and somehow “+43” caught the most traction.
This is a person who has historically inhabited the most cliche of cities in India: Gurgaon and Mumbai. Which would say a lot about patient zero, Vikrant Mehra.
“+43” is an attempt at creating a legacy and cashing in on being an alumnus of Stoa. While it is indeed a testament to how much Stoa fellows believe in the power of the program, it was also, in the subject’s words, “just shitposting”. Basically, Vikrant Mehra is no different from the believers of dogecoin.
He expects future founders who graduate from Stoa to use “+43” as a rallying cry. I just hope that we don’t hear of any slips of tongue in pitches to VC firms.
This week on Discord:
Best Discord messages this week:
In other news, currently also singing ourselves asleep to the tunes of, “Wake me up when everyone on Discord starts using threads”
Here’s how to gauge how to do it, from the two of us that are constantly asking that you do:
If you’re starting a conversation, put the message down & turn it into a thread.
If you send a message & find that it spurs a conversation, PLEASE start a thread, and migrate.
It’s quite painstaking & overwhelming to see all that content on multiple channels with no context, and being forced to scroll 3 whole screens to understand what’s going on.
ALL it takes is
Hover over the top right hand side of your message
Click on the hashtag and,
Pick a name for the thread.
Have some mercy on the rest of us, please & thankyou.
Fellows Rocket🚀Shipping🚢 Content
For Stoans by Stoans
Sameer was nice enough to leave us a list of all his read-cent buys here
But you might have to get in touch with him for reviews of them
Still lost when it comes to the Finance world? Check this video out.
Want to buy a PS5 but can almost never find one available? Here’s why!
Are you at all an animated tHiNgs fan?
Here were two threads we have kept safe for when the time beckons. Add what you will here:
Blogs & Resources 🤓
This JD by Pratyush has become the bar to aspire to, when it comes to JDs for many fellows.
If you saw this thread about creating a Delta around your products, you probably want to read this CMO Journal by Stoa facilitator Sairam Krishnan, too.
Meme Wars 🥲
This week’s shiny old winner of Best Meme goes to …………
To end, we’ll leave you with this: 🎧
A recap of all the music that got shared on our server this week - there was no handpicked curation involved here.