I Wanted to Get ‘Ahead’

I wanted to get ‘ahead’ of an upcoming scalp treatment:

In about two weeks, I’m going to look a lot like this guy:

I’ll keep my camera off for a wee bit.

The Speakeasy

While not exactly my Pride and Joy (reserved for my kids), this is my go-to hideaway when I’m at home.

Completed during COVID, we started with this:

Located behind a hidden door:


The room boasts an amazing sound system, a booth, a piano and a marble bar:


My haunt away from my haunt.

The Conversation Wall

I got tired of virtual backgrounds .. I had a green screen for a while, but given my hair is thin and stiff on top, it appeared I had a green ‘halo’ (undeserved, to be sure). I finally gave up and built a Conversation Wall:

I use this to start and extend conversations. I change out the physical items, depending on my audience, for a delightfully interactive effect.

Let’s have a Teams call!

What’s different?

Just past five weeks since full-time WFH .. I meant to write this at a four weeks, but I have achieved balance.

Four or five weeks .. It’s well past time for a little whimsy. So, what’s been different for me?

  • Getting up earlier (6:00 am).
  • Shorter commute (22 seconds).
  • Starting work earlier (6:00:22 am).
  • Drinking more coffee. Way more coffee.
  • Working out later .. usually during a briefing or learning session .. where my comments are limited and breathlessly-delivered.
  • Increased my workout time and regimen (watch out Dennis Quaid).
  • Shaving less often (candidly, this drives me crazy).
  • Shaving at my desk in schedule gaps.
  • Vacuuming more often, especially around my desk.
  • Showering later in the day.
  • Wearing fewer clothes .. typically a workout kit.
  • Making soup on the weekends for the week.
  • Eating more soup during the week.
  • Perfected my Eggplant Lasagna recipe.
  • Eating more Eggplant Lasagna.
  • Learned how to use my new Small Big Green Egg (thank you Jeff!). This is for when I’ve had enough soup and Eggplant Lasagna. It happens.
  • Dropped 11 pounds so far (about a kilo per week).

What else?

  • I’ve worn out my slippers .. I’m wearing socks with them until the new ones arrive.
  • I discovered my heels don’t like rubber flip-flops .. they crack (my heels, not the flip-flops). Wearing socks with them as well .. the between-the-toe thing is annoying when wearing a sock .. and it looks silly. Amazon?
  • Managing the entryway as a decontamination zone, complete with scary UV light.
  • My dress shoes are all polished.
  • My dress clothes are all dry-cleaned, as are my suits and tuxedos.
  • My shirts are all ironed.
  • My clothes are too big for me. Time for a socially-distanced fitting.

And at home?

  • After over three years in this house, I just realized the topmost railing in my staircase is upside-down. It still is. Now that I’ve written about it, I’ll fix it.
  • My floors sparkle.
  • My sparkly floors are not level.
  • My rugs are beaten to death to remove dust. They now whimper when I approach them.
  • After an unfortunate desire for the house to install an inside pool in my bar in Thanksgiving (i.e., a flood), the work was finally bid and scheduled .. the day before WFH orders. Maybe by next Thanksgiving?
  • The garbage disposal is on its last legs .. see the above.
  • Oh: the master bathroom fan sounds like a 747 (Remember those? We used to fly in them to go to far-away places with strange-sounding names). Again, see the above and above.
  • My Arlo batteries are wearing out at an incredible rate .. too much motion in the house makes them switch on and off and on and off.

On tidiness:

  • Washing my hands and face more often.
  • Cleaning the house more often.
  • Running the dishwasher every day.
  • Washing towels and kits upon any exposure outside.
  • An ‘inside kit’ that I only wear after I shower.
  • Oh: I still sweat .. even whilst just working at my standing (not walking) desk. Go figure.
  • A haircut that is now six weeks old .. think Einstein Hair.

On clothes .. beyond kits, I tried to think of something better to say than Tom Hanks, who, on his SNL skit said: “I forgot how buttons work”.

So have I.

Stay connected. Stay safe. Stay home.

Sprint and One Million Devices

A kudos to Sprint for helping to address the digital divide in Fortune: “Here’s how Sprint Plans to Help 1 Million Disadvantaged Kids Get Online” ..

.. I’m hoping they’re not the Samsung Galaxy 7.

Cheap shot, I know.

:: ducks ::


When did you realize you were mortal?

For me, and up until this point, well never.

Had a humbling experience with the Arizona Desert yesterday; a walkabout (of which I’ve written of several) resulted in too much heat and too little hydration for me after only three miles.

Granted, I had a big bottle of water and it was a short hike .. but temperatures over 100 and just the right combination of hills .. well, I deserved what I got.

The riot (and the blessing): it hit me after I returned to the hotel (rule of thumb with me: when half the water is gone, replenish or turn back). I climbed four flights of stairs and everything went white.

A few minutes rest, then I walked to the ice machine to fill my hat. Twenty minutes and the rest of my water, I found my way poolside for water and more rest.

So: despite the bike rides and hikes .. I need to keep an eye on myself.

Great lesson learned .. and the opportunity to make better plans going forward.


Sweet 16 for My Cassie

Quite a day for my Cassie: her 16th birthday is today.

“Sweet 16” (as it’s commonly called here in The States) is a significant milestone. It’s considered a coming of age (although not quite the age of majority, which is 18) .. it’s when you can get a driver’s license, an adult job and earn the right to health-related privacy laws.

At 16 you can donate blood in many states (with parental consent) and obtain an ten-year United States passport. It’s the age you can drop out of school (please don’t!) and get married (with parental consent .. please don’t!)

Sixteen is the legal drinking age in Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria, Italy and Portugal. It is also the legal age for a person to purchase tobacco products in Belgium, Switzerland and Italy.

For many turning 16 you throw a party of select friends and the family. The honored guest selects the guests, the venue and the activities .. for Cassie it was her school chums, at home and all electronic .. all the time.

Happy Birthday, my Cassie.

Be the Hero of your Own Story

It’s time.

In fact, no matter what time it is .. from wherever you may be starting, it’s time for you to be the hero of your own story.

How will you position yourself? Will you be The Anti-Hero who becomes a reformed nemesis, Mister Goody-Two-Shoes, or something else?

Whatever it is, take the right step .. which is the next step .. or the step after that. Write your own path, write your own tale, do something that’s different .. or the same. Find a way, or find the truth. Make a mistake, and make it right. Get dirty, or tidy up. Make a friend of someone new, or resolve an old conflict, just because.

All this said: do the right thing, for the right reason. Pay it backwards and forwards and in-between. Find a way to protect, enhance, communicate, mentor, or grow yourself.

Do something. Do something impactful. Do something right. Do something now.

Write your own story, with yourself as the hero.

It’s Time.

Disruption is only Fun ..

.. when you’re doing it to someone else.


The rest of the time, it’s discovery .. it’s when you find a way to do something with an existing application or workflow that surprises and delights others. Consider:

  • Multiple deletes of emails on a mobile device
  • Workflow process that does ‘something’
  • A ‘wow’ factor (search my blog for those little jewels).

Anything that enhances the experience for the rest of the carbon-based life forms.

The rest of the time, it is ‘by design’. Something a clever product group or a talented developer brought to the fore. Some thoughts:

  • Markets get disrupted when there is critical mass with a group that does something en masse (think Uber).
  • Couples get disrupted when a partner gets there faster (‘there’ may be personal growth, situational recognition or a well-kept goal). Help me, Doctor Phil!
  • People get disrupted when life changes occur .. we have all had these.

Beyond lemons to lemonade, we manage disruption in different ways. It’s more than adaptation .. more than coping. We succeed as CB life forms if we thrive with disruption .. disruption that is a way of life today.

Let’s thrive!


We all find blockers frustrating. For Writers (humor intended) .. it can be career-ending ..

.. for me, it’s those little technology blockers I feel the urgent need to overcome before I can do the actual work that needs to be done.

I used to find myself stuck in ‘toolkit’ mode .. this is where I felt I had to be completely prepared for all eventualities. This put me in a perpetual ‘download-and-install’ loop, preparing systems before any actual work could be done.

But, no more.

Thanks to cloud-based sync and enhanced capabilities .. coupled with necessity mandates (that eliminate the ‘nice-to-have’ factor), work and creativity can flourish.

This post actually represents the capacity manifestation of my return to the ‘sphere, where I test out various:

  • Format
  • Execution
  • Management

.. components that let me do my work.

So .. let’s get to posting!

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