A Media Star Is Born

Given the outcome of the 2016 US presidential election, everyone needs read Neil Postman’s 1982 book, Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business. Reading it won’t change the outcome of the election, of course, but it will provide understanding for how and why it happened the way it did. Postman’s main point is that print encourages logic and reflection. Visual media, and television in particular, encourage the feelings of the moment. To be taken seriously and believed, written documents need to be logical and coherent. To be successful, visual media need to influence feelings. We . . . → Read More: A Media Star Is Born

Living in Interesting Times

The wish, “May you live in interesting times,” is assumed to be an Ancient Chinese Curse because “interesting times” typically meant war, rumors of war, and loss of economic and political stability. Regardless of whether it really is an ancient curse, when you read and/or watch news of today’s events, you’ll see just how many of the factors that make times “interesting” are present today. Here’s a partial list:

In the Mid-East, we have ISIS, an on-going war, the destruction of ancient cities, and millions of refugees.

In Europe, we have millions of refugees seeking a place they can . . . → Read More: Living in Interesting Times

In My Family…

An old story whose origins are unknown to Google is about a relatively newlywed couple who wanted to divide chores evenly having weekly arguments about whose turn it was to mow the lawn. Other household tasks weren’t a problem. The husband had his responsibilities, the wife had hers, and each was comfortable with the assigned tasks with the exception of lawn mowing. They had agreed to take turns but had trouble tracking whose turn it was from week to week. After months of arguing about whose turn it was to mow the lawn, the wife blurted out, “In my family, . . . → Read More: In My Family…

Customer Service

While we don’t always get good customer service, I hope that we (you and I) always do our best to provide it. This blog post is a follow-up to my previous post on Gas Pains. When I wrote that blog entry, I had received less-than-wonderful customer service from #Napoleon Fireplaces and blogged about my experiences attempting to get a new plastic knob to control the gas valve on a Napoleon gas log insert. You can still see much of the discussion on Facebook, although at this point you’ll need to search for it.

To summarize, the original gas knob, . . . → Read More: Customer Service

Evidence Procedures

In NLP, one of the central Metamodel questions is, “How do you know?” An honest answer to the question provides information about a person’s “model of the world,” which is essentially a “reality strategy”—the way people decide what’s real. In most cases, what we think of as “real” is more accurately a “belief,” in some cases with very little in the way of supporting evidence. Most beliefs begin, of course, with some evidence in the external environment. Through the natural processes of deletion, distortion, and generalization, beliefs that have a logical beginning can become increasingly distorted over time. One of . . . → Read More: Evidence Procedures

Gas Pains

This blog is not about eating too many beans…. Some gas pains are worse than others.

This is the story of my experience attempting to replace a $2 plastic knob on a Napoleon gas log fireplace. You may have had a similar experience with one product or another, or you may encounter something similar in the future. In the days before social media, sharing similar stories with a sufficient number of people to influence corporate behavior would have been extremely difficult if not impossible. The sharing part is relatively easy now. What remains not so easy is influencing corporate . . . → Read More: Gas Pains