Thursday, March 07, 2002

Cas Scheer, my late paternal grandfather, started his career as a cub reporter for the Kenosha Evening News. One of the most important lessons he learned while working there was the need to be clear and precise in one's writing. If a word or phrase is left open to misinterpretation, Grampa would often tell me, that's exactly what will happen.

This principle is particularly true of headlines, the California haiku of journalism. Despite the fact that all editors worth their salt drill this law into their writers' heads, errors slip through all the time. Which brings me to my case in point, from the AP wire via Excite last night:

Agent: Glenn Close to Deal With Packers

On seeing this, my first thought was "What did the Green Bay Packers do to piss off Glenn Close?"

A couple of seconds later, I figured out what the headline writer had actually intended to say. It was a realization accompanied by the welcome memory of my grandfather's warm and gentle laugh.
12:51 PM  < To return to this entry, save this link

Tuesday, March 05, 2002

It's a rare day when a guy finds and adopts a whole new philosophy of life. That being the case, it's safe to say I'll be celebrating March 5th as a personal holiday from here on out. For today is the day I discovered the key to unlocking my full potential, and that key is called Structured Procrastination, as espoused by my first new personal hero in nearly half a week, Dr. John Perry, Henry Waldgrave Stuart Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University.

To boil it down to its essence, Structured Procrastination states that a procrastinator should pile on as many projects and obligations as possible. When these items are ranked, the ones that seem most important and pressing will rise to the top. In order to avoid those supposedly imperative tasks, the procrastinating person will focus his or her energies on the mid-list things that are, in reality, the ones that actually need doing.

It's so damn simple. I should have worked this out for myself years ago.

I still need to field-test this way of thinking, but my gut tells me it is going to change my life for the better in very short order. It's certainly going to be a hell of lot more effective than such tripe as Successories or Franklin Covey has ever been, and it didn't cost me a dime.
1:43 AM  < To return to this entry, save this link

Sunday, March 03, 2002

A smattering of links to make up for (and in the last case, explain) my silence this past week:

In need of someone to admire? Look no further than my new hero, Queen Rania of Jordan. Not only is she intelligent, savvy and a skilled diplomat, but she also gets massive points for being able to live with and love one of the world's biggest Star Trek fans.

Have you seen Oolong yet? If not, get thee hence.

If I'm not around much for the next few weeks, you can blame it on a game. I broke down and bought Civilization III a couple of days ago, and I think I'm going to be spending a great deal of my time (except when I'm job searching, of course) trying to master the thing.

6:15 PM  < To return to this entry, save this link

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