Hi, so here I am with a few more sentences from my short story collection, Americana Stories, as soon as the glare goes away, there it is, published by Read Furiously. I thought Winton was getting too close to the falling debris and called down to him. Lord and Taylor, he replied calmly and backed away. Winton had played delivery man who has one line which he delivers off stage. Winton decided early on to communicate solely with that line for the duration of the production and actually managed to express himself quite accurately most of the time. And that's it for this evening, thanks for tuning in and I'll see you next time.
PostPost anything that's on your mind. This could be a question for the world.
CommentComment on any thought (post) and offer your perspective.
ListenWhat do others think? Browse and listen to their audio posts.
Recent postsNew post
How I went to live in the woods for the weekend. Do you remember what it's like to spend time without the Internet? I realized that for the past couple of years I've literally been living in the telegram. Working from morning till night, only taking time off to eat, sleep or go to the city for my own business, but it wasn't really rest for my brain or myself. Sometimes I even have nightmares about the sounds of notifications in telegram, and I'm not kidding. All this has a very negative impact on my psychic, develops distracted attention syndrome and burnout. And after all of this, I decided it's time for social media detox for me. Last weekend I packed up with my girlfriend and went out of town for the weekend to such a horizontal apart hotel. It was super cool. For two days I spent only half an hour on social networks and we had time to go sledding, play billiards and board games. We made a snowman and walked in the pine forest and it was very cute. We also fed a cute kitty cat and wanted to take her home, but she decided that freedom is better than a warm apartment. After that I felt really rested, and even after working too much at the conference last weekend I wasn't too tired. After the trip I realized how addicted people have become to social media. Sometimes I wanted to get on my phone the same way a smoker wants a cigarette. So I decided to make taking a break from the internet such a regular practice. And I want to do it at least once a month. And I think I will go out into nature more often after that.
Hello, and welcome to another episode of your healing journey, a journey of hope. Today I wanted to spend just a few moments talking about Valentine's Day, which is only a couple days away, and the memories that it left with, certainly with me, and with the time I spent together with Deborah. So Valentine's Day typically is, the relationship there is more so for the purchase of flowers to give to your significant other, your loved one, perhaps a dinner out are some of the things I know when I think back, those were some of the things that were precious to us. And now what I'm left with is the memory of giving those flowers. I can still remember taking flowers to where my wife Deborah worked, and that was always the big deal was getting the flowers delivered to her place of work, and usually I probably overdid it just a little bit as far as the size of the bouquet and that, but in any event, she was my valentine, and I wanted to be able to honor her in doing so. One of the things that I found as time has gone on since Deborah passed in 2021 was that special occasions have a way to trigger memories, have a way to trigger our response or reaction to a number of things, and actually they are a reminder of what we had and what we could have had, had she have lived longer than what she did. And for most of us, I think what we need to be able to do is to be able to think of why this day is so special, and by that I mean Valentine's Day. What is or what was the significance of that day to us in order to be able to move forward? You know, some things have changed, and we wish we could go back, but we know that we can't, or reality sets in and we realize that going back is not an option. It's another day to remember and to actually, you know, it's Deborah's birthday is coming up on the 24th, and her daughter is arranging to have a birthday supper in her honor, and that's, sorry, that's important to me that they would take the time and effort to do that, my son and my daughter, so that even though it may be another day to remember, it still has significance and we still want to honor her in however we possibly can. And so, I'm getting emotional here, so I just, I wanted to, as we're getting close to wrapping up here, I wanted to just let her know, let Deborah know that you were my valentine for 43 years, and every day is a memory that I wish to cherish and hold. And so thank you for giving me that opportunity. And to our listening audience, I sincerely hope that you take the time to celebrate Valentine's Day and the love that you have for your significant other. Take that time and let them know how much you actually do love them, whether it's simply just saying I love you, or whether it's a bouquet of flowers, chocolates, whatever makes you feel happy. I know for me, the flowers eventually kind of petered out and it became recognizing that we loved each other and spending some quality time together outside of what would be considered the norm. And so I encourage you to do what you have to do in order to share those memories and to read and actually to remember what you had and what you could have had, had things been different. And with that, may God bless.
I've recently discovered a pair of interesting characters, or influencers, you might say, and I've been binging on their podcasts and blog content for a few weeks now. Their names are Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, and the two are... well, they're something else.
Okay, first, it's not really correct to say that I've discovered them recently, it's more like I rediscovered them. Both have been in my peripheral vision for years, and I had already read a book that they penned together. The book was called Remote, and I believe it came out about a decade ago, but I read it in 2016. So that's a few years already. Before that, they wrote Rework, which I haven't read yet, but which I think provided the bulk of material that I'm enjoying right now in podcast form.
Now, eight years later, I stumbled upon an interview Jason did with Lenny Rachitsky, who hosts a product management podcast, and this started a whole binge listening experience for me, finding other interviews Jason did, and by the way, a shameless plug, if you want to listen to someone's guest appearances on different podcasts, the tool you should use is Padverb, which I helped create. I'm going to put a link to it, but anyway, I digress.
So, Jason and David, what do they do? I guess it would be factually correct to describe them as entrepreneurs, although that wouldn't really do them justice, because they're more like practicing philosophers, and also because I think they would hate the very term entrepreneur, I think they prefer makers or something. On the business side, they jointly run a medium-sized company called 37 Signals, which they started, and which makes several group communication tools, products, the flagship product is called Basecamp.
The company supposedly posts eight-figure profits every year, and for a company that was bootstrapped without much in the way of investments, that's pretty freaking good, and that provides the first sort of talking point, or the first received idea that they attack, is that you need to have investors to launch anything successful in this tech environment. But there are other received ideas that they attacked, and that list is long, very entertaining, I enjoyed their reasoning and how they structure... how they tell their experience, how they structure their argument.
Sometimes they go a little far, sometimes, I totally agree that you don't need so many meetings and Zoom calls, I totally agree that working in physical proximity is not critical, but they've attacked in a kind of entertaining way the whole concept of the MVP, even the sacred cow of agile methodology, the two-week sprint.
One thing I sort of felt they were going too far with, or rather David was going too far with, is the attack on static typing in programming languages. I'm not going to go into technical details, but there is a reason why most languages do have static typing, because it saves a lot of work later after a product is launched. And of course, David comes from Ruby, which doesn't have static typing, it's a dynamic language, so he carries with him this kind of, this sort of philosophy of "just winging it." Anyway, I'm going to leave that discussion aside for the moment.
But here's the thing. I really.. Like I said, I've been enjoying their stuff, I've been binging on it, mostly agreeing, except the above thing, but I recently started sort of analyzing my agreeing with it, and I kind of came to the conclusion that maybe there's like a slight logical fallacy there. Because if you boil down their whole argument, it's basically that they are these guys that are commonsensical, normal, very much like the listener. They started this company by themselves, no investors, with all their.. you know... way of doing stuff that is, like I said, commonsensical. And they succeeded to the level that is beyond what most people even dream of, let alone, you know, can realistically achieve. And therefore, they say, you don't have to follow all these kind of standard practices. Instead, you can go with their approach. Of course, it doesn't guarantee anything, but it's kind of like, we did it, so why can't you?
Well, you know, suppose this is all true, and I mean, it is all true. But the catch is that they did it at a certain point in time. And also, who are exactly they?
So Basecamp, their flagship product, their cash cow – it's a very successful software as a service type business with over 100,000 paying customers. 100,000 or probably more, way more, but 100,000 is a good ballpark.
That company is led by Jason and David, who, you know, who sold way more than 100,000 books. I think it's actually closer to a million or maybe more than a million. They've been blogging not just for years, but for decades. They've done interviews, talks, presentations. My guess is their total audience is at least in the millions.
But in addition, David, as I've only recently found out, is the very person behind a very popular framework called Ruby on Rails, which I'm highly unlikely to ever try. But given how many people use Ruby on Rails, I would venture to guess that even a small fraction of them would be a huge, if not decisive, audience for Basecamp. Even a small fraction of them decided to subscribe to Basecamp, you know, that alone would make it super successful.
So is it possible that their success as "tech makers" and philosophers is partly due to the fact that they're famous, somewhat famous, to the tune of millions, in the perfectly targeted crowd of potential customers, which by itself almost guarantees that they're successful?
Does this strike you as a logical fallacy to think that their advice could be applicable to others? I'm not sure. I'm just asking.
So yeah, it's a question. What do you think? Asking for a friend.
None of us were born with preconceived ideas as to who we are and what we will become. It is the influences and influencers in our lives that help mold us and establish how we think, decide, and act. We have all had great influencers in our lives. These people have helped us with our education, career, and life in general. They show us that we are not expected to know everything about everything. Together we can rely on others for help when needed. The trick is choosing the individuals right for you to rely on. This book, Influences and Influencers, is about how I, Peter Christian, a veteran business consultant and mentor, became who I am through the influence of others. This book is a reflection on what great mentorship is, what happens when it's absent, and how leadership shapes our lives. Wherever you are in your life and career, the wisdom shared in this easy-to-read book will help you to go further. I have worked for and with over 300 companies and many individuals throughout my 40-year career. I have helped them to earn or save millions of dollars and create and retain thousands of jobs. While doing so, I learned many things, both positive and negative, that helped me to form my professional approach and philosophy. In my book, Influences and Influencers, I share with you what has had an impact on my professional career and my approach to life in general. By reading and learning from my experiences, you can be what and where you want to be and whom you can depend on to help to get you there. You can find this book on Amazon or any of the other book sites. Order it today and get ready for a great read.
I had it in mind to record something about democracy and how the people who are crowing loudest about how they desire to defend democracy from all threats are the ones most intent on preventing a certain candidate from appearing on Republican primary ballots in states that are controlled by Democrats. But instead of that, and instead of the other topic I was thinking of, which was news of Mark Zuckerberg's, I think, $250 million bunker complex in Hawaii, and the fact that the very same people who tell us that artificial intelligence and advanced technology are about to usher in utopia are all preparing for Mad Max, you know, collapse. But instead I think I'll talk about the novel and the movie, Logan's Run. I believe the novel is from 1967, the year before I was born. I read it as a teenager. I saw the film as a child, but I think I was too young to really remember the film that well. I do remember watching the TV series. I then saw the film again as an adult, and it does not hold up. It's not all that good. But, you know, I've read a whole lot of science fiction novels, and the science fiction novel of Logan's Run is interesting, but it's not a classic. It's not amazing. If you haven't read it, you're, you know, you're not missing out on all that much. But you know, it is a film that made a lot of money in the 1970s. It's a film that has iconic imagery that is still recognizable to this day. And so, of course, it is an obvious candidate for a remake or a reboot of some sort. And people have been trying to do that throughout the 20-teens. And yet, it can't get made. Now, in the novel, it's a society that seems to be either run by AI or just sort of, it's just kind of automated. Most of the people, I mean, all of the people in it are under the age of 21. When you hit 21 years of age, you're done. You are put to death. In the movie, they bumped that up to age 30 so that they could have popular stars in the film who, you know, would not pass for teenagers. And the novel centers around a sandman who is a police officer or bounty hunter who is assigned to make sure that everybody who has lived their full 21 years goes quietly or, you know, goes in one way or another. But he himself, you know, when his time comes, he decides to run. That is an interesting premise. In the novel, it's not executed all that well. There's a sequel novel as well, which is, again, not all that great. I listened to that on audiobook just a couple years ago. And then the movie, it's got some iconic images in it, but it's also kind of dumb. Now, when the Hunger Games movies were hitting big, and then that other series starts with Divergent, I think, which as far as I know, like the last film got broken up into two installments in the second installment, like never hit theaters. Or if it did, it hit with such a whimper that it was like a straight to streaming sort of thing. But, you know, there was a hot minute where it seemed like, yeah, a film about how, you know, a dystopian film starring all young people could work. And particularly with the success of the Hunger Games, they decided they were going to, you know, gender swap the lead and make Logan a woman. So it would be a female-led, young adults, dystopian sci-fi novel. But it didn't happen. And, you know, a lot of why it didn't happen is just Hollywood politics and just the sort of quirky functioning of the Hollywood system. But I think part of it is the zeitgeist. The idea that the world is only for kids and that as soon as you hit 21 or 30, depending on which version of the original Logan's Run you want to go with, the novel or the movie, by the time you hit 30, you know, it's all over for you. That just doesn't resonate today. Because today, the kids are the ones who've got it rough. The kids are the ones who can't really get their lives started because they can't make enough money to get houses and cars and get married and basically do what their parents did. And so they're kind of stalled out. So, you know, a movie that says, yeah, the old people are being kicked off and everything's about the youth, it just does not resonate with our current moment. Our current moment, it's the old people who are living large and it is the young people who are scrounging. And so Logan's Run in 2023 or 2024, I just don't see it. Not without some conceptual transformation that would make it relevant. All right. That is all. Happy New Year.