Musings | 17 May 2017

Originality and Success

It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.
I came across this quote by Herman Melville, which got me to thinking.
This statement is only true if your goal is originality. If your goal is success, then this statement is simply not relevant. And as Kim Kardashian reminds us every day, originality and success no longer go hand in hand in this day and age.

Poetry | 02 May 2017

Men and Women

I think this poem is a good advice for girls/women as well, since it doesn’t just describe things that have to do with masculinity, but deals with things that have to do with being a decent human being.
So ignore the second part of the last line, and read on.

If
by Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

Humor &Personal | 19 Apr 2017

Jeopardy! and Exercise

These days I have a stand-in appointment with treadmill and Jeopardy! most nights of the week. Killing two birds with one stone by exercising my body and my mind at the same time. How very efficient of me!

Even if I don’t know all the answers, I still have fun. Alex Trebek, of course, is the big part of that. Several weeks ago, a video of him reciting some rap songs was making the rounds on the Internet.

Personally, I prefer Alex Trebek doing 90s R&B:

I’ll make love to you
Like you want me to
And so on…
And so forth…

Management &Reading List | 07 Apr 2017

Drop This Book and Run

Drop the Ball

I cannot NOT recommend this book enough. Drop it and run. Never look back.
To be honest, I DID finis this book. But after the quote below, I stopped reading and started skimming.

If women truly want men to step up at home, we have to start seeing them not as dumb, useless, or selfish, but as intelligent, capable, and generous agents of change in our lives.

I just keep thinking — if your husband is dumb, useless, or selfish, why are you married to him? If you see him that way, why is he married to you?

Want to be a strong, successful woman, who has it all? Go ahead. More power to you! But it’s important to remember that feminism is not a tool to belittle men. Feminism is not a stick to beat other women with.

As for us needing a Drop the Ball movement…Well, it’s a great idea, but it will take more than a book. Sheryl Sandberg wanted to start Lean In revolution, and four years later women are not better off.

This book tries to break the cultural expectation that women do the majority of housework, but places another expectation on them – to be successful as a leader in the their career outside of home. How about we allow women to make their own choices? Isn’t it what we want in the end?

Art | 08 Nov 2016

New York Magazine and Impressionism

I really enjoyed the recent cover of the New York Magazine, and was especially pleased to come across the original art in Impressionist Art book I’ve found in the local library. It’s Young Woman Sewing in a Garden by Mary Cassatt.

New York Young Woman Sewing in a Garden by Mary Cassatt

The same subject in a different time occupied in a different fashion. I love how accurately it reflects our world today.
I love a good mash-up when it comes to art. Who doesn’t?!

Fashion | 08 Sep 2016

Fashion and Sweater Pills

It’s the stuff nightmares are made of. Your favorite sweater dress is pilling. The horrible little balls cover it completely. You are ashamed to wear it out in public.

Oh, wait. It’s all good. We will put in our Fall/Winter 2016 ad. There!

Odette Pavlova for MaxMara Fall/Winter 2016

Odette Pavlova for MaxMara Fall/Winter 2016 Ph: Steven Meisel St: Carine Roitfeld

 

After all, it’s fashion. They wouldn’t understand anyway.

Music | 15 Jun 2016

Prelude Op. 23 No. 5 in G Minor by Sergey Rachmaninov

Here is some classical music to elevate your Wednesday.

There is an interesting story behind this uplifting piece of music – Emil Gilels played this prelude at the front during World War II to raise morale of the Soviet military forces fighting in the war.

The narrator says (in Russian): “Gilels is playing at the front to remind us what the war is worth fighting for. Immortal music!”

Humor | 10 Jun 2016

Style Advice from POTUS

I am against wearing sweat pants in public. Even if they are made by Victoria’s Secret or any other designer brand. Believe me, if Ronald Reagan cannot pull them off while flying on Air Force One, you cannot pull them off either.

Here is your proof:

Ronald Reagan on Air Force One

Marketing | 27 May 2016

Masterful Copywriting

I love new E*TRADE commercials. This is what great copywriting sounds like. The copy is so dense that it can be used as fancy tongue twisters. They are shot brilliantly as well – the approach is minimalistic, but copy delivery is punctuated by a cannon shot or a snip of the scissors. Commercials like these you want to watch over and over again. So here you go – enjoy!

Trader

Invest

Retire

Humor &Musings | 18 May 2016

If You Want To Make God Laugh, Tell Him About Your Plans

“Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” is the funniest job interview question you can be asked. The funniest and the hardest to answer. The correct answer (and believe me, there are right and wrong answers here) is “Right here, with this company, doing the job we are discussing right now.” If you are a half-decent human being and prefer not to blatantly lie in job interviews, the answer to this question is “It depends”.

And it depends on a lot of things. Things that are outside of your control. It depends on the company and how they treat you, and on the person you are talking to right now. And that just for starters. It depends on your family, friends, neighbors. It also depends on who gets elected as the next President of the United States and where our economy goes. And many other things. What I am saying is that in order to know where any of us would be in 5 years, we need to be able to control our futures. And if that was the case, we would be living in an entirely different world.

 

Expect the best, plan for the worst, and prepare to be surprised. ~ Denis Waitley

 

But, anyway…Can you calculate probability of every possibility in your life for the next 5 years, and answer this question already?

That is why it is so funny. Because they tell us not to lie in job interviews, but how can we honestly answer questions they ask us? The reality of the situation looks a lot like the New Yorker cartoon below, but don’t tell that to your interviewer or you will never get the job.

 

New Yorker Cartoon

“In five years, I see myself with the same job title, about the same salary, and significantly more responsibilities.”

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