The Daily Valet. - 12/7/23, Thursday

✔️ Should You Zip It?

The Daily Valet.
The Daily Valet.

Thursday, December 7th Edition

Cory Ohlendorf

By Cory Ohlendorf, Valet. Editor

Wishing all who are celebrating Hanukkah today peace and light during this season of miracles.

Today’s Big Story

Zip the Lip?

Taping Your Mouth shut to sleep is gaining popularity on TikTok but is it a health hack, or just the latest fad? 

It sounds kind of torturous. Sealing your mouth closed with tape in order to breathe through your nose while you sleep. But mouth taping has become one of the wellness industry's biggest sleeper hits (see what I did there?) Gwyneth Paltrow has sung its praises. Joe Rogan has explored it on his podcast. Andrew Huberman, the Stanford University neuroscientist and social-media guru, along with a slew of pro athletes have all recommend mouth taping as a way to “sleep much better.”Of course, we all want to sleep better, right? Perhaps that's why #mouthtape videos on TikTok have been viewed more than 40 million times. The practice is said to help reduce snoring and help you feel more energized, among other promised benefits. The question is, does it actually work? The answer seems to be ... maybe?For starters, there is some scientific rationale favoring nose-breathing over mouth-breathing. Your nose hairs filter out various foreign particles such as germs, allergens, and other debris from the air that you inhale so that they are less likely to reach your lungs. Plus, the mucus and your nose's more narrow structure also make your nose better at warming and humidifying the air that you inhale than your mouth. Warmer and more humid air in turn can be less irritating to your lungs while helping promote circulation.After years of reporting for Outside and Scientific American, science journalist James Nestor wrote the book Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art. He took part in a Stanford University study where he intentionally blocked his nose to breathe through his mouth overnight and his health completely fell apart, reports InsideHook. His blood pressure rose 13 points, his pulse went up, his blood oxygen dropped and he essentially developed sleep apnea overnight.Nestor now advocates that people affix a small piece of tape to the center of their lips before going to sleep. Perhaps aware of previous criticism of the practice, mostly from sleep experts wary that an everyday adhesive could close a crucial passageway, Nestor recommends porous, hypoallergenic tape. He told Huckberry, “You are not hermetically sealing your mouth off, the point is just to train your mouth to stay shut when you're unconscious. People will be amazed by this simple, free hack, what it does for the quality of your sleep and the quality of your health. I adopted it, and it was dramatic.”


On average, human beings breathe around 22,000 times a day, nearly nine million times a year.

Did You Catch the Fourth GOP Debate?

Haley's rise makes her target for Rivals as they ramp up attacks and exchange blows over Trump and China

He wasn't up on the stage, of course, but the fourth Republican primary debate moderators pressed the presidential hopefuls to take on former President Trump on Wednesday. Just six weeks before the Iowa caucuses kick off the nominating contest, the remaining candidates battled for seemingly second place—as the former president remains the frontrunner with an estimated 60% of GOP votes.According to Reuters, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley was the subject of repeated attacks, as Florida Governor Ron DeSantis sought to blunt her momentum. The debate, which also included tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, saw a flurry of insults interspersed with discussions of the Ukraine war, the Israel-Hamas conflict and the U.S. southern border.Christie, a vocal Trump critic, repeatedly invoked the former president on stage, calling him “a bully” and a “dictator.” He also pressed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to answer whether he thinks Trump is fit for office. “We should not nominate someone who is almost 80-years-old,” DeSantis eventually said, as moderators tried to interject to end the tense exchange. Haley made a point to say that the biggest issue for women is trans women competing in girls' sports. But there was one major issue for women that went unmentioned by her or anyone else on the stage: abortion. Biden campaign spokesman Ammar Moussa highlighted that oversight to the Washington Post, a hint of how Democrats will seize on the issue Republicans have lost on recently.


Trump, who held counterprogramming rallies during the first three GOP debates, didn’t bother this time and instead held a fundraiser.

Google Just Launched Its Answer to ChatGPT

THe company says Gemini is its “most capable” A.I. model ever

Increasing talk of artificial intelligence developing with potentially dangerous speed certainly isn't slowing things down. A year after OpenAI launched ChatGPT and triggered a new race to develop A.I. technology, Google on Wednesday revealed an A.I. project which it says matches and even exceeds OpenAI's tech in a number of ways.Dubbed Gemini, it comes in three flavors: an Ultra version for the most demanding tasks, a Pro version it says is suited to a wide range of tasks and a Nano version that can run directly on mobile devices. It's designed to be multimodal, recognizing video, images, text and voice at the same time. However, for now Gemini will only return results in either text or code. For now, the company is planning to license Gemini to customers through Google Cloud for them to use in their own applications. Starting Dec. 13, developers and enterprise customers can access Gemini Pro via Google Cloud Vertex AI.From today, Google's Bard, a chatbot similar to ChatGPT, will be powered by Gemini Pro, a change the company says will make it capable of more advanced reasoning and planning. The Verge reports that demos included the YouTuber Mark Rober using Bard to make the perfect paper airplane—including by taking photos of his designs to get A.I.-provided feedback—and parents uploading pictures of their children's homework to get help figuring out where their math went wrong. “That's all just demos and promotional videos for now, though … but if Google's benchmarking is right, the new model might already make Bard as good a chatbot as ChatGPT.” And that's already a pretty impressive feat.

Is Car Design Sexist?

Car design is largely geared toward men, even though women buy more than 60% of all new cars sold in the U.S. 

We've been seeing more of the angular, sharp-edged, and aggressive Cybertruck this week, which pairs perfectly with the conversation brewing about the designs of cars these days. For his raw stainless steel truck, Elon Musk told Jay Leno he wanted a truck bed large enough to “mount a missile launcher.”But Musk is not alone in preferring such a thunderously masculine automotive aesthetic, reports WIRED. “Tesla's new truck merely represents the current peak of male-oriented auto design.” Shanghai-based electric carmaker HiPhi's A hypercar is right up there as well. So is Nissan's Hyper Force concept, which debuted at the Japan Mobility Show in October and looks like it's driven straight out of Death Race 2000.However, data found that female consumers accounted for 62% of all new cars sold in the U.S. and influence more than 85% of all car purchases. And while the exterior of a car matters, most vehicles are used from the interior, through the windshield and with the controls at hand (and feet). New vehicles, especially electric vehicles, are now like offices and lounges, a “third space” on wheels. Automakers are doubling down on their efforts to coddle occupants with cocoon-like comforts and high-end technology. But with few women in senior design positions, ideas that would appeal to females are simply not pursued by most automakers. WIRED does point out that both Buick and Kia are making in roads, so to speak.


A new 568-page coffee table book from Phaidon chronicles the 130-year history of car design.

In Other News

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy

He tells the Wall Street Journal his work “is only getting started.”

Have you heard about ...

Holiday Gift Guide

What Home Cooks & Foodies Want This Year

Useful, stylish and luxurious gifts for those always in the kitchen

For those always tinkering in the kitchen, the ones always eager to feed you, and for those who never pass up a chance to try the latest fad when it comes to food. We've assembled a sure-to-please assortment of gadgets, gear and ingredients that will no doubt impress and find a permanent home on the counters of the home cooks in your life. From useful tools to indulgent items and grail appliances, these thoughtful gifts will definitely score you a dinner party invite or two.

Gifts for home cooks

Clockwise, from top left to right:

Tapas set and ash board, $135 by LSA International; Milltop salt and pepper mills, $40 by Joseph Joseph and pestle and mortar, $110 by Grace McCarthy

Gifts for home cooks

Clockwise, from top left to right:

Smart toaster, $299 by BALMUDA; chili crunch hot honey, $13 by Momofuku and Generations II round casserole, $72 by Dansk

Want More?


What We’re Buying

A unique box

Williams Sonoma Silver and sycamore box

I've got a thing for boxes. But they're useful and stylish, so what's not to like? Apparently, style icon Aerin Lauder thinks so, too. She recently worked with Williams Sonoma on a line of home goods inspired by some of her favorite things. This unique box is made from sycamore, a wood valued for its silky grain and light color. The lid is polished silver, with a vintage-inspired modernist handle. Use it on a desk, in your entryway or to wrangle remotes and other loose items cluttering up your coffee table.

Get It:

Silver and sycamore box, $99 by Williams Sonoma

Morning Motto

Take a risk.

Apply for that job. Move to that city. Do all the things that scare you, because they're worth it.


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