Poor and Hungry

[…] I’d rather live poor and hungry than work in a large, bureaucratic and political environment where I personally couldn’t see how my efforts created value.

Certainly sounds about right.

via Bryan Johnson of Braintree.

Ira Glass on The Wild Room

I like to think of it as the only show on public radio other than Car Talk that both Daniel Schorr [NPR news analyst] and Kurt Cobain [lead singer/guitarist ofNirvana] could listen to. I think it’s appropriate that the show [which aired on Friday evenings] is on a station that most people don’t listen to at a time when most people won’t hear it. And the fact that public radio never puts a new show on the air or takes any off is definitely to our advantage.

—Ira Glass describing The Wild Room, one of the first radio shows he co-hosted.

This American Life

My daily, after-work schedule has changed in the past month or so.

Instead of:

  1. Glass of wine
  2. How was your day, honey?
  3. Supper

It now looks something like this:

  1. Description of latest theme of This American Life podcast
  2. Re-explanation of how This American Life podcast is organized (ie: it uses themes, and ‘acts’ around these themes)
  3. Glass of wine
  4. Rundown of Act 1
  5. Rundown of Act 2
  6. Rundown of Act 3 (if exists)
  7. [Typically longwinded] monologue about how these acts relate to the show’s particular theme
  8. Lengthy discussion and debate
  9. How was your day, honey?
  10. Supper

This American Life is a ‘podcast’. If you don’t even know what a podcast is, that’s ok. It is nothing more than a radio show where they tell stories. Some stories are happy, some are sad, some give explanations, some try and find them. The common bond holding these stories together is that they’re all compelling and masterfully told. The ‘podcast’ part is where you can download the radio show and play it on your computer or iPod. Hence the pod-part.

As I recently tweeted: if there’s better radio out there, I haven’t heard it. If you still haven’t had a listen, please give it a try. Download a single podcast and just give yourself an hour to listen—I can almost guarantee that you’ll be glad you did.

Success

All of the successful 1 people I know have one thing in common: an apparent lack of self-doubt.

I say ‘apparent’ because I’m sure they have good days and bad just like the rest of us, but very seldom do they blame who they are rather than what they’ve done. Attributing a slip-up to a mistake rather than a personal characteristic is what I believe to be the key difference.

Where you say:
—I’ve made a mistake. This really sucks. It wouldn’t have happened if I was [smarter, taller, stronger, louder, quieter, etc, etc…]. This always happens to me, or rather, I always do this to myself.

They say:
—I’ve made a mistake. This really sucks. It won’t happen the next time.

I use mistakes as an example, but it applies the same way to everything else. The road to you becoming a great designer, or a great teacher, or a great singer, or a great electrician it is littered with obstacles.

Finding ways to make sure that the biggest obstacle isn’t yourself is the real trick.


1. By success, I refer to the only two metrics that matter: happiness and personal satisifaction.

A Web Designers Oath

I’ve thought a lot about this, and I think it’s finally time that we develop some sort of oath-swearing ceremony for new and established web designers. I think that the attached covers most of the major points fairly well.

* Please note: In the absence of sworn, legal officials, this oath must be read, signed and returned by fax (yes, fax) to 1-999-WEB-OATH.


A Web Designers Solemn Oath

I solemnly swear to follow web standards, to not use custom, home-grown, half-baked frameworks instead of open source tools like WordPress and Drupal, use CSS instead of tables, Flash instead of jQuery, Times New Roman instead of Georgia, and will absolutely refuse to make a website for a wedding photographer or restaurant owner that full-screens and plays [bad] music.

Sincerely,

[Please re-read ten times and sign legibly above]