Saturday, March 17, 2012

Cake Crashing

1. In the event that you have no weekend plans, crash those of some cool people instead.

2. You will never be able to eat as much as you think you will as you peruse the menu.

3. Self-perceived selflessness will most often be perceived as selfishness.

4. The presence of popcorn and cotton candy make an otherwise mundane event quite fun.

5. No matter how many times you do laundry, the basket will never be empty.

6. When in doubt, bake a cake. 

7. Documenting your life through images and hashtags is almost passive aggressive. Use words instead.

8. Some things are too delicious to say "no" to: anything with black truffles, tiramisu and ice cream top the list.

9. The end of an era does not necessarily mean the beginning of a new one, it often simply means the necessary end of one.

10. Watching
a show about a man going through a mid life crisis in the worst possible way is the best, most enjoyable way to feel better about your quarter life one.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

La dolce far niente

Following an unexpected craving for cake, I settled for Maltesers.

Courtesy of the cool hunter

1. A kid may be cute, but that doesn't mean he won't poop his pants.

2. The need for recognition is hard-wired, no matter how much you may want to think you're over it, hearing someone's unsolicited praise you will never get old.

3. The ability to bake a successful quiche is an indication of unsurpassed cooking skills. 

4. When pouring questionable drinks, ensure you are not pouring them for questioning minds.

5. When an adult puts some strawberries on a plate, it is safe to assume that they intend to eat them. Assume no such thing when it comes to a child, they will most likely stomp on them. Then maybe eat them.

6. If it's too good to be true, then it probably is. If you're allowed to watch glee for 45 minutes with three males in the room, it is best to prepare yourself for the two hours of football which will ensue.

7. If seeking a humbling experience, don't expect to find it on The Palm.

8. A kid-friendly environment is much more friendly minus the kids.

9. The best managers don't manage projects, people or things, they manage expectations.

10. The secret to life is mastering the art of "la dolce far niente."

11. Don't let this be your autobiography:

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Doctor's Orders

The doctor* is in.

"Rarely have wiser words been spoken.
Read these, embrace them as my goodwill token" 
- S.

1. Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.

2. You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go. With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you're too smart to go down any not-so-good street.

3. Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.

4. We are all a little weird and life's a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.

5. If things start happening, don't worry, don't stew, just go right along and you'll start happening too.

6. Be sure when you step, Step with care and great tact. And remember that life's A Great Balancing Act. 

7. Only you can control your future. 

8. If you want to catch beasts you don't see every day, you have to go places quite out of the way. You have to go places no others can get to. You have to get cold and you have too get wet, too.

9. Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

*All wonderful pieces of cake courtesy of Dr Seuss.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Ephemeral* Cake

Some of the wonderful words of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry from The Little Prince.

1. All grown-ups were children first. (But few remember it).

2. If I were to command a general to turn into a seagull, and the general does not obey, it would not be the general's fault. It would be mine.

3. It is much harder to judge yourself than to judge others. You are only truly wise if you succeed in judging yourself.

4. Language is the source of misunderstandings.

5. One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eye.

6. We must endure the presence of two or three caterpillars if we wish to become acquainted with the butterflies.

7. No one is ever satisfied where he is.

8. The meaning of things lies not in the things themselves, but in our attitude towards them.

9. Love does not cause suffering: what causes it is the sense of ownership, which is love's opposite.

10. If you want to build a ship, don't drum up people together to collect wood or assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.

11. The time for action is now. It's never too late to do something.

12. "How could drops of water know themselves to be a river? Yet the river flows on."

*Ephemeral: that which is in danger of speedy disappearance

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How to be happy(er)

1. Spend a few minutes every morning stretching.
2. Sleep with the curtains open, and let the sun’s energy help wake you up.
3. Accept that change is inevitable. When it hits you, dwell on it for a few moments, and then move on.
4. Pseudo-science: Get yourself a healing crystal. The science may be bogus, but the placebo effect may do you wonders. Really, you’ve got nothing to lose.
5. Actual-science: Hug or be hugged four times a day – research has shown that this will help you look younger and live longer.
6. You can’t make everyone happy, so if you have to pick one person to make happy, choose yourself.
7. Micromanage problems, not people.
8. When you smile, your brain assumes you’re happy. Smile often enough, and pretty soon, you will find that you are.  
9. “You are a free person.  Exercise your freedom.” – P.C.

(Inspired by @otrainbowjordan and @tfaris)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

False alarms

1. The most alarming and universal human quality is people's ability to surprise you, be it for the better or the worse.

2. Dreaming that you are getting married is alarming if you are not, and even more alarming if you have a chat with your mother who is gravely disappointed to learn that it was all a dream.

3. Choosing on occasion to be extravagantly happy for a fleeting moment despite the highest forms of common sense pointing in the opposite direction is alarmingly risky yet worryingly common.

4. Losing weight when you have no intention of doing so is alarming. Not losing weight when you have every intention of doing so is even more so.

5. Finding your comfort zone is an alarming state of being; avoid it at all costs.

6. Like listening to your favorite song on a loop, over-using a word over a short period of time renders it alarmingly meaningless.

7. It is alarming to discover that the effect of additional tequila shots is not linear at all, but actually very exponential.

8. Staying in is the superior choice to going out when the company is exceptional. (This is, unsurprisingly, not alarming.)

What are you listening to?

New York


Sunday, May 29, 2011

Let there be light

Like a light bulb, many of life's certainties simply are, omnipresent yet ignored, until spontaneously they combust, and then simply cease to be... 

1. If you wake up thinking, "Life is good", then you make it so. Instead, if "FML" is your first thought, then you probably will.

2. Sleeping in is a total indulgence on a weekday, and a complete waste on a weekend.

3. Being angry at yourself makes it hard not to be angry at almost everything around you.

4. If you feel you are unable to give someone the benefit of the doubt, do it anyway. The opportunity cost will be worth it no matter what the outcome is.

5. Having a car is a luxury which one who has always had a car cannot fathom. Much like having a first-world passport.

6. When you are not craving anything in particular for dinner, Shake Shack will do.

7. Resilience is an attribute which you will not ever know you have until it is time to test it. 

8. When a light bulb (literally) lights up over your head, and then (literally) explodes, first take a moment to appreciate the apt and timely symbolism, then proceed to wonder about electrical circuits.

9. People's true colours are rarely what they seem, and often a completely different shade. Sometimes the dust must settle to see them clearly, at other times they will suddenly and abruptly appear.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A little too late

Click to listen

1. Homemade cookies are really the best way to say "thank you".

2. "Cookies may be great, but nothing speaks louder than cash" - KG.

3. When in doubt of your abilities, remember, you are the result of 4 billion years of evolutionary success. Act like it.

4. Listening to Adele is often the only remedy to distress.

5. When approaching a burn-out, adjust your path and remove some obstacles; you're more likely to make it to the end intact.

6. The best way to make friends with 30 strangers on a boat is to make friends with the bartender and institutionalise a tradition of shots.  

7. Don't be so quick to accept "no" for an answer. When there's a will, there really is a way. (Apparently, this also applies to no.6)

8. Sometimes a little is enough. Other times, it's a little too late.

9. Leaving someone is like jumping out of a plane. You need a little push, but then you gotta just do it and hope the parachute will open.

10. The most important part of any action or reaction is the follow-through; little else matters.

11. If two people are on different wavelengths, they will never meet on the same plane.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Wedding Cake

Sometimes you can hear the music long after it has stopped playing...

1. When planning a blachelorette party, it is important to keep in mind that the venue you select will not be a venue you can ever visit again. 

2. Spending the whole day in a swimming pool, a bathing suit, a few beers and no sunscreen can only go one way.

3. Sometimes, when someone says “after-party at my place”, they may actually mean it. 

4. There’s nothing like a blast from the past to induce child-like behaviour and exceptional dance moves.

5. If someone is passed out in a humorous fashion following an evening of excessive drinking, documentation is important. Take a picture, then help them.

6. No after-party is complete without breakfast and/or watching the sun come up. Achieving both is best.

7. Giving a speech is much easier when you have an assistant.

8. Empowering one guest with the last remaining lighter is usually the best way to keep track of it.

9. If music is playing, your job is to dance. If the music is not, then your job is to sing. And dance.

10. When the bar is out of vodka, it is your cue to begin consumption of the tequila.

11. Coming back to work “cold turkey” is never the best of ideas. It is advisable to ease in with a glass of wine and a late morning arrival.

12. If an after-party is thrown in a particular bride & groom’s honour, it is usually likely that they will show up to it.

13. Saying goodbye to good friends is so much more difficult when placed in a heightened emotional setting. It is best to say “see you later” instead.

Mabrouk to the gorgeous couple!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Matters of the heart

A windy afternoon; ideal for a piece of cake and a good book...

My idea of Heaven. Courtesy of 

1. Going to work every other day is ideal, and actually quite productive.  Actually, very productive.

2. Having someone tell you they enjoy your work generally encourages you to do more of it.

3. « Fait attention de pas avoir les yeux plus gros que le ventre. » - a very clever French proverb

4. Do not let “regretful” be an option for how you feel after you decide to do something – think ahead.

5. ‘There is no smoke without fire’ & ‘Go with your gut’ are two important lessons that often go hand-in-hand.

6. When seeing an old friend, the easiest way to catch up is to simply pick up where you left off.

7. The best way to diagnose a food allergy is to take picture of the rash and send it to your mother.

8. Indulgent eating is very much like falling in love – when you are in the moment, it feels so right and often what you imagine heaven to be like, but sadly it often leaves you with an uneasy feeling in the pit of your stomach.

9. When waiting to see a good friend for longer than anticipated, it is essential to remember that it will always be worth the wait.

10. Sometimes it takes an immeasurable amount of mental training to stop feeling a certain way. Sometimes, even that is not enough.

11. Never let your boss be aware of how efficient you actually are. That way, you can always ensure you have a few minutes during the day to daydream and play scrabble.

12. Matters of the heart are always a serious issue; do not approach them lightly.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Great Expectations

Sometimes it's hard to be objective. But sometimes it is the only way to be enlightened.
1.       “If you don't have an opinion, don't choose an opinion.” - J.A.
2.      The most accurate displays of a woman's "expectations" emerge once a year on February 14th. 
3.      Sometimes, it really all is in your head. Don't make the mistake of accepting it as reality.
4.      If the response is of no added value, don't ask the question.
5.      Waiting for the other shoe to drop can make one begin to go a little crazy.
6.      Being referred to as someone’s “creative consultant” is always a wonderful compliment.
7.       Be very aware of when something is none of your business. Don't interfere, and don't take it personally.
8.      A happy meal for lunch increases one's happiness quotient. Discovering a shortcut shortly after is the cherry on top.
9.      Some things, once said, can never be unsaid. Be careful with your words in the heat of the moment.
10.  Don't expect people to change simply because you have demanded it of them.
12.  Take a step back. It's much easier to see the big picture that way.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Have fun. Laugh. Eat Cake. Repeat.

Adapted from a new note sent by an old friend of mine, Mr. Goud Add-Vice. Smart guy.
1.       Ask for help.  If there is one thing you should do in business, it is to ask for help.  Asking for help is the truest sign of professionalism you can ever demonstrate and it’s probably the best thing you can do for your career.  What follows might also come in handy.

2.      Don’t expect anyone to plan your career.  It just doesn’t happen that way.  There is no grand plan that will carry you.  Decide what you want in a career and go after it.  Set goals and write them down.  You may not know what these are right now and that’s OK.  But do everything you can to try find out.
3.      Keep physically fit.  Your brain will make you money, but your body carries your brain.  The better your physical condition, the greater your capacity for productive, unrelenting work. And being in good condition gives you another edge:  You will be able to start earlier, pause less often, and end your day with a wind sprint.  You will also sleep better.   You will have energy and motivation to – at night and on the weekends – coach soccer, attend theatre, volunteer. 
4.      Do something hard and lonely.  Try to do something Spartan and individualistic.  Do something that you know very few people are willing to do.  It’ll give you a feeling of accomplishment and a certain self-elitism.  It will mentally prepare you for the rigor of life and business.  Read late at night when everyone else is asleep, run long, slow distances early in the morning (and in the winter), work on a 1,000-piece puzzle, write, cultivate a garden, clean the entire house, read Moby Dick, but do it by yourself.  Do something that is solitary.  All great athletes remember the endless hours of seemingly unrewarded toil.  So do corporate Executives.
5.      Never write a nasty email to criticize, belittle, degrade, or hurt a colleague.  Never write a memo that is cynical, condescending, or unkind.  Never, ever send a memo written in anger or frustration.  The world of business is small.  People get promoted, change companies, change jobs, have powerful friends, and they do all of this around the world and throughout your career.  Companies merge, acquire, and get acquired.  That nasty memo could show up anywhere someday and haunt you.
6.      Spend one hour thinking every day.  Plan, dream, scheme, think, calculate.  Review your goals.  Consider options.  Ponder problems.  Write down ideas.  Practice your orals presentation.  Figure out how to get things done.  Do this every day.  Do it at a desk or working table.  Do not do it while driving or jogging or in the shower.  Don’t plan on this kind of thinking at your project; you will be interrupted.
7.      Send handwritten notes.  These days impersonal communication pervades.  There is fax mail, e-mail, junk mail, voice mail, BMM, AIM, WhatsApp, PINs, ATMs, talking cars, digitized wake-up calls.  Handwritten notes stand out.  They are the digitalis for the digital world.  They will differentiate you, mark you as having personal manners and merit.  They are personal, of the gracious past, and never out of style.
8.      Don’t hide an Elephant.  Big problems always surface.  The “hiders” always get burned, regardless of complicity.  The “discoverers” always are safe, regardless of complicity.  When you know there is a problem, and it is important, let people know right away.  Turn the problem into an opportunity to shine.  Define and explain the problem carefully.  Give estimates of potential damage.  Describe possible scenarios.  Suggest options and solutions.  Ask for help.
9.      Always take a vacation.  The people who brag they never take vacations are either fools or poor managers.  You must be able to establish your project, your pyramid or area of responsibility so it can function smoothly without you.  Take the time to relax and always go on vacation.  Recharge, play, laugh, eat, sightsee, sit on the beach or on your deck, read a book, love, enjoy your family, cook for your friends and forget about work. 
10. Make your family your no. 1 client.
11.   Never panic… or lose your temper.  Thomas Jefferson said, “Nothing gives one person so much advantage over another as to remain cool and unruffled under all circumstances.”
12.   Push ideas and generate impact, not paper.  Don’t confuse activity for progress.
13.   Be a credit maker, not a credit taker.  Credit takers usually have short shelf-lives.
14.  Don’t be an empire builder.  Empires have a way of crumbling onto their leaders.
15.   Make mistakes.  They are milestones.  They indicate action in new and inexperienced areas.  A mistake is a learning device and you probably will never make it again. Acknowledging mistakes is a sign of security and confidence.  It shows a willingness to try new things and take on uncertain ventures.  Mistakes are the exhaust of active, energetic people.  And the record of mistakes is often the memorabilia of a very successful person.
16.   Live for today, plan for tomorrow and forget yesterday.
17.   Have fun.  Laugh.  Repeat.
18.   A career, like life, is a marathon.  So stop along the way, replenish and don’t forget to ask for help…

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Other Shoe

1. It doesn't cost anything to be nicer to people. The return on investment is infinite.

2. If you do not enter a radio competition, it is almost impossible to win.

3. If you plan to eat potentially stomach-upsetting food, ensure you are within close proximity of your bathroom. 

4. Just because a little dog you have not previously met follows you into a building and looks at you inquisitively, does not necessarily mean he is lost.

5. If the person sitting in the driver seat casually mentions he is low on gas, expect to be the subject of a practical joke not long after.

6. Waiting anxiously for the other shoe to drop may cause it to do just that. If it is inevitable, stop "waiting".

7. Discovering you can listen to your favourite radio station at work is like finding out you're allowed to bring a cellphone to class in college.

8. Ignore the cynics that posit there are no truly altruistic acts and do them anyway.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Missing Piece

Sometimes it takes a while for the smoke to clear and the dust to settle...

1. If you miss someone, go visit them.

2. Punctuality is not that important when identifying qualities in a great friend -- there exist more important things.

3. It is far too easy to be judgmental. Don't... Nobody knows what takes place between two people behind closed doors. 

4. Having falafel for breakfast, lunch and dinner is never (ever) a good idea.

5. When someone who truly has your best interests at heart questions your actions, stop to wonder why.

6. Even though a ticking time bomb will eventually blow up, it is best to live in the moment and ignore the "eventually" for now.

8. Being sick can be incredibly boring once the staying-home-from-work novelty has worn off.

9. Forgiving someone is the easiest way to feel lighter and happier.

10. It's always nice to feel included.

11. Everyone has their irrational passions -- leave them be.

12. Your most kindred spirit will often make themselves apparent to you when you least expect, but when you are most in need.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A few scars

Fighting your way through life, you may often stop to wonder whether you really belong, and whether it is worth is. One way or another, you learn. At least you hope that you do.
Most of you will recognize these nuggets of wisdom
For the rest of you, you can thank me later

1. "If you don't know what you want, you end up with a lot you don't."  

2. "Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken."

3. "The things you own end up owning you."

4. "Maybe we have to break everything to make something better out of ourselves."

5. "You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake.  You are the same decaying organic matter as everyone else, and we are all part of the same compost pile."

6. "People don't want their lives fixed. Nobody wants their problems solved. Their dramas. Their distractions. Their stories resolved. Their messes cleaned up. Because what would they have left? Just the big scary unknown."

7. "There are a lot of things we don't want to know about the people we love."

8. "I just don't want to die without a few scars." 

9. "Maybe self-improvement isn't the answer.... Maybe self-destruction is the answer." 

10. "It's only after you've lost everything, that you're free to do anything."  

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Perfectly permanent

The days seem long, but are getting shorter... "All this feels strange and untrue..."

1. If you want something you haven't gotten yet, you obviously don't want it badly enough.

2. Intriguing people is easy... ensuring that the intrigue is sustainable is far more challenging.

3. Being angry gets tiring after a while.

4. There is nothing wrong with going to bed before ten.

5. Putting on a pair of glasses is the easiest way to look smarter. Or goofier. Depending on the glasses. And the person wearing them.

6. If you enter a competition and truly believe that you are going to win, then you will win.

7. Practice doesn't make perfect; practice makes permanent. 

8. A McDonald's happy meal makes an ideal lunch. The company you keep helps too.
9. The Christmas spirit is easily induced through Santa hats and Christmas carols.

10. Sometimes all you need is a piano to distract you.

11. Everything is okay in the end. If you're not okay, it's not the end.