Saturday, June 25, 2011

Hello Charles, ready for your close up?

A more magical moment I cannot imagine.  The first glimpse of your kid.  Parenthood leaves the realm of the abstract and becomes something very tangible with that first picture. Plus, it looks like he'll be a boxer.  A scrawny little, wonderful pugilist.  We haven't even had him yet and he's already making us proud.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Becoming reacquainted with 'the man'

I recently made the decision to go back to a full time corporate job.  With us now getting ready for a kid it just made sense. I will be leaving the sometimes thrilling and sometimes crushing world of entrepreneurship and joining the throngs of us who are indentured to 'the man'*.  I am excited for the opportunity but there are few things that will be missed.  Among them:

  1. The freedom: I will miss having incredible flexibility in my schedule and having the ability to, at the drop of the hat, pull off a road trip or getaway.  Here's to a quick accumulation of vacation days.
  2. The public restroom:  On occasion I would work out of a public library.  For the most part it worked well.  The notable exception being when a restroom visit was required.  My GI tract probably suffered insurmountable damage due to my fear in going in there. About as third world as Scottsdale can get.
  3. The Tax deductions: It was certainly fun to try and justify every expense as 'business related'.  Every January was like a treasure hunt as I danced through the myriad deductions available for the small business.
  4. The Mutual Fundification of my income:  It is very nice knowing that if you lose business from one source you have it coming in from some other ones.  In these uncertain times when a layoff is just around every corner it is essential that you can draw upon another cash cow.
  5. The cachet of calling yourself an entrepreneur: Ok, I'm not sure how much cachet exists, but there is a certain adventure to being one.  Since I can't be an adventurer, this was the close second.
I'm sure that there are several other reasons why I'll miss what I've done and what I built with Lacuna.  They will probably reveal themselves slowly over the next few weeks as I try to acclimate to the corporate lifestyle.

*By the way, who is this man and why do so many of us have to work for him?  

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

File this under: Good, damn good

What do you get when you mix the best new act to come out of England and the mundane melodrama of The National?  This.  Very cool.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The collective human experience

A good portion of my free book time is spent towards history. Oftentimes we are so consumed with the issues of the 'here and now' that we forget to truly educate ourselves or to enjoy the triumphs and tragedies of our forebearers.  So replace that copy of "The Millionaire Next Door" with a book regarding an age or a time that truly interests you.

And if you don't  find value in history, the words of Hugh Nibley, taken from 'Approaching Zion' offer you a good reason as to why you should.

"By neglecting to consult the writings of the ancients, we miss the fact that in their trials and triumphs, individually and collectively, they had to undergo exactly the same trials that we do: the props of the plays, the technology, and the fashions, wear out and are constantly being replaced, but the issues and the plot always remain the same."

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Jury Duty Extraction 101

Your jury experience suck?  Blame Henry Fonda.
Let's be honest. Outside of an occasional Victoria's Secret catalog, J/K, there is nothing very exciting about getting the mail these days.  I guess we have Al Gore and his internet to partially blame for that.   There is probably even a hierarchy that outlines the dread associated with most mail.  If such a pyramid existed the Jury summons would be near the top, just under the photo traffic ticket but slightly above the utility bill.

Wait.  Shouldn't jury duty be something that we, citizens of an open democracy, relish and be proud of?  Sure, the right to a jury by your peers is something that distinguishes our great legal system.   We like it, just as long as we aren't being called on to spend an afternoon at the old courthouse passing judgement.*

So, as long as there has been a need for a jury, there has been a need to come up with a suitable excuse to extricate oneself from this grand responsibility.  Since this is something that effects all of us and since I have successfully gotten out of all 5 of my summons I thought I would share a few things that might help you successfully neglect your civic responsibility.  Monsieur McAdams can check the list against his ever expanding legal experience.

  • The racist/sexist/just about anything that ends in 'ist' card:  This is an easily played card that promises results.  But keep in mind that those results come with potential consequences.  The success of this one might depend on the size of and your standing within the community.  You would hate to be labeled the town homophobe just because of a couple well placed comments to the person picking a jury.
  • The political outlier: This fellow is a close relation to the "ist" man explained above.  All it takes is a couple of comments regarding your support for some militia group in Northern Idaho or for socialism in general.  Better yet, bring a copy of Das Kapital to the jury selection meeting.
  • The suffering patient:  Head over to your nearest medical supply store before your jury selection date. Don't forget to be creative in your selection of items to wear.  My suggestion?  Buy some loose gauze.  Visit a magic shop and get a hold of some fake blood or puss.  Apply liberally.  Should get you out pretty quickly.
  • Mr. Answer:  This one takes a little longer to execute but its effectiveness is not questioned and it reduces the potential stigma associated with the previous three.  From the moment you enter the building you need to put on your best "A" personality and actively dominate every conversation.  Not only that you need to have very strong opinions that you have to insist are absolute.  The best way to get your pass is to target any staff and harangue them regarding the inefficiency of the current judicial system.  Go the distance by going into a 15 diatribe about your prescription for this problem.  Nobody wants to execute justice with "Mr. Answer", trust me.
These are just a few suggestions.  Try them out and let me know how they work.   Have any better recommendations?  Please share.

*The obvious exceptions would be anything worthy to be shown on Court TV.

3/23/17- A fitting end in Venice

That'll cost you 100 Euros I guess it makes sense to spend the last chapter of our Italian journey in the town most commonly associ...