Blog

For the last 18 months I’ve had the chance to tune pianos together with my boys. Today my daughter joined us and got her first taste of the torture and joy that is piano tuning!
I subscribe to my congressman’s email newsletter. It’s the one thing in my email sure to make me steaming mad every time it arrives. I faithfully reply, asking for more action, some attempts at compromise, but he’s stopped replying. Maybe he blocked me. 😂😭
I’m grateful that I get to work with great people who care deeply and passionately about what we do. The last two days have been filled with “constructive conflict,” a wonderful thing as it lead to better group decisions.
In Chicago today on business and I had the biggest steak of my life. It was delicious, at the least half that I ate before being wonderfully stuffed. Also go to try oysters for the first time. 😋
I was so excited to get a brand new MacBook Pro at work. So shiny! So pretty. So much good marketing. It must be great, right? Turns out that it’s just another computer, and all computers have problems. Sigh.

The Boring Work Cometh Before the Breakthrough

I loved Cal Newport’s article today “On the Myth of Big Ideas.” I’m a big believer in the importance of creating space in your life in order to receive inspiration, that great ideas come to us during downtime activities. Sometimes you hear this described as “bed, bath, or bus.” For me, taking a walk around the neighborhood or mowing the lawn are a prime source of ideas. But we can’t just expect ideas to come to us.
Today I was talking with a colleague about how hard writing is for me. He seemed kind of surprised. (After all, writing marketing emails is a big part of what I do.) I hold onto the hope that someday the actual writing part will get easier, but it never seems to.
One of my favorite series (both books and TV) is Harry Bosch by Michael Connelly. The stories are great, as is the jazz. Here’s a playlist of some of the great tunes Harry mentions. www.youtube.com/watch
We’ve had a bunch of rain in the last few weeks. This always reminds me how ungrateful and changeable humans (read that as me) can be. When it doesn’t rain we wish it would. When it does, we wish it would stop already. We (me) can be very hard to please.

Wisdom from James Clear

From his weekly newsletter Three steps to exceptional results: 1) Do less. Stop dividing your attention. 2) Do it right now. Once you have identified the essential, go fast. Maintain a bias toward action. 3) Do it the right way. Acting quickly doesn’t mean acting carelessly. Get to work right away, but keep working on it until it’s right.
Finished reading: Endurance : An Illustrated Account of Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage to the Antarctic by Alfred Lansing 📚 I wish I read this book before the pandemic. Being stuck on the ice, fighting for survival is a great metaphor for living in Covid times. Excellent read.
This morning I asked my kids “what does America mean to you?” Their answers were interesting and thoughtful. We reached family consensus when my son added “and pizza!” to his answer. Everyone agreed. America has great pizza. 🍕
Day 2 of the pasta machine experiments. Today’s mission: dumpling skins 🥟 So much easier than rolling them by hand!
Spent most of the afternoon and into the evening learning how to use a pasta machine. It was a very floury adventure that ended with a bowl of homemade noodles. They were chonky, almost like udon noodles. Very tasty.