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Welcome

This is my personal & professional blog.  It's a place for me to think out loud and learn. I'll sometimes talk about things I don't understand as a way to begin to understand them. I'll often be wrong, short sighted, and unclear. When you see this happening, please point it out!

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Friday
Jan222010

"Baba"

"Baba" (Turkish for Father) by Lev Yilmaz

Tuesday
Jan192010

Elizabeth Gilbert on Genius

One of my favorite TED talks.  I really should read Eat, Pray, Love and Elizabeth Gilbert's latest book, Committed.

"I am a writer. Writing books is my profession but it's more than that, of course. It is also my great lifelong love and fascination. And I don't expect that that's ever going to change. But, that said, something kind of peculiar has happened recently in my life and in my career, which has caused me to have to recalibrate my whole relationship with this work. And the peculiar thing is that I recently wrote this book, this memoir called "Eat, Pray, Love" which, decidedly unlike any of my previous books, went out in the world for some reason, and became this big, mega-sensation, international bestseller thing. The result of which is that everywhere I go now, people treat me like I'm doomed. Seriously -- doomed, doomed! Like, they come up to me now, all worried, and they say, "Aren't you afraid -- aren't you afraid you're never going to be able to top that? Aren't you afraid you're going to keep writing for your whole life and you're never again going to create a book that anybody in the world cares about at all, ever again?"

http://www.ted.com/talks/elizabeth_gilbert_on_genius.html

Monday
Jan182010

People Magazine

Wow, People Magazine is huge.  The gossip rag does more than $800 million in revenue per year.  Each of the 53 issues per year generates >$15M in ad revenue.  This doesn't include revenue from subscriptions/the cover price. 

In a year where the magazine industry as a whole is in decline and advertising itself is taking a hit, People grew it's ad revenue 4%.

Per it's rate card, it's the US's most popular weekly magazine with a criculation of 3,450,00 issues.

Changes in Magazine Ad Revenue from 2008 to 2009.  Via Silicon Alley Insider Chart of the Day.

People Magazine Rate Card from http://www.people.com/people/static/mediakit/main.html

People Magazine Rate Card

Monday
Jan182010

Go Ahead, Pee in the Shower

Friday
Jan152010

"Boyfriends I have Been"

"Boyfriends I have Been" by Lev Yilmaz

Thursday
Jan142010

Why Blog?

Thursday
Jan142010

How to Eat Sushi

Wednesday
Jan132010

Fifty People, One Question by PostSecret

PostSecret: Confessions on Life, Death, & God.  Video by Deltree and Benjamin Reece of New Orleans.

 

My favorite?

Guy to Girl: "Allright, you know your cat that disappeared?  I ran it over."

Same Girl to Same Guy moments later: "Hmmm, let's think.  You know, like, you know all those books I have that I don't read?  It's just all these love poems that are about you."

 

Wednesday
Jan132010

Generation WE

If I could make movies, I'd love to make movies that parody movies THIS.

But admittedly, I'm inspired to act/make moves by rhetoric and cinematography like this!  Ugh, I'm so easy.

Nothing like doomsday scenarios to rile the ol' hoi polloi.

gen-we.org via Brett Leve and Jeff Rosenthal

Tuesday
Jan122010

Who is Paying Taxes in 2009?

Monday
Jan112010

What Changed 1999-2009

Sunday
Jan102010

Number of Inhabitants per Doctor

Friday
Jan082010

Mint.com's Pre-Launch Pitch Deck

Mint was acquired by Inuit in September 2009 for $170,000,000.00.  Read about the Happy Ending.

Mint.com Pre-Launch Pitch Deck

Friday
Jan082010

Procrastinating is the Bestest

Thursday
Jan072010

Map of the USA

Courtesy of Hugh McLeod of Gaping Void fame: http://gapingvoid.com/2010/01/06/map-of-the-u-s-a/

Friday
Dec252009

READ THIS BOOK.

Genevieve Gaudet suggested I read Tracy Kidder's Mountains Beyond Mountains.  I'm so mad she didn't tell me to read it earlier!  But at least she did buy it for me.

The book chronicles the life of Dr. Paul Farmer, an extraordinarily compassionate anthropologist and doctor.  Farmer has devoted his life completely and in an uncommon way to bringing medicine to people without it.

Please read the book.

Paul believes something that would confound my brother Moiz and avid Ayn Rand fans--that the poor should get preferential treatment for medical care for being poor.

An excerpt from the book--a letter from Ophelia Dahl to Paul.  I like this letter so much because it hints at how uncommon Paul's devotion to his cause is.

Lovely Pel,

        My inability to promise a life with you, as your wife, does not stem from a lack of love or deep, deep commitment to you.  Indeed, as you probably know, I have not felt a serious ounce for anyone but you since 1983.  My decision was based, instead, on trying to envision our life together and I saw us not matching (the only way we didn't fit).  For a long time I thought I could live and work in Haiti, carving out a life with you, but now I understand that I can't.  And that's simply not compatible with your life--the life you once told me you would like to lead even ten years ago.  You pointed out to me once, during an emotional argument, that the qualities I love in you--that drew me to you--also cause me to resent you: namely your unswerving commitment to the poor, your limitless schedule and your massive compassion for others.  You were right, and, as your wife, I would place my own emotional needs in the way of your important vision; a vision whose impact upon the poor (and the rest of us) can't be exaggerated...

        I was lucky to meet you when I was young, young enough to feel as though I have always known you and lucky to have been hugely influenced and loved by you.  In the end, I hope you know that as part of my histology you can never be replaced.

 

I tried to find a YouTube video that did this book and Paul Farmer's achievements justice.  But I couldn't.  This video is the closest I could find.  Paul Farmer on NPR's This I Believe (click here to share this video):

 

P.S. I'm not sure what publisher allowed this amazing book to have both such a horrible title and horrible cover.  Please fix this in your reprinting, Mr. Schuster. 


"I'm going to build my own fucking hospital.  And there'll be none of that there, thank you."

"I was fully formed at twenty-three."

Saturday
Dec052009

Making Babies

When people have babies, they go apeshit over them.  That means there's money to be made.  Mommies and daddies are eager to give you money if you give them the right product/service. 

Moreover, I suspect there's tons of breathing room for innovation here.  People my age who grew up on the internet are now having babies (my Facebook Feed is daily proof) and have been primed to spend money on digital goods and over the internet.

Any ideas?

PS I'm not even a mom (yet) and I can tell Circle Of Moms sucks!

Wednesday
Nov252009

Hillary Makes me Laugh!

Traditional greeting: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gestures alongside Meera Shankar (left), Indian Ambassador to the United States

 

Monday
Nov162009

Amazon being awesome!

Amazon being awesome and telling everyone about it.  Something about these notices on their website make me read them.  Perhaps it's just Jeff Bezos signature at the bottom?

Monday
Nov162009

Email should be smart, like me!

Sometimes when I send email, I expect a bloody response.  OK, most of the time, I expect a bloody response.  But sometimes, I care if I don't get a response.

When you send an email, you should be able to tell your email you expect a response.  And when you expect it by.  If you don't receive a response by then, your email should send you an email telling you you didn't receive a response.  Hell, you should be able to auto-send a "What up yo?" email to the person reiterating that you need a response from them!