Email clippings from today:
Q: We can go back to your place. But you wanna be sweaty or don't you sweat anymore? It's like 400% humidity out.
A: Shoot, I forgot about that. It’s actually not that humid, it’s just 87 degrees. Weather.com says it’s 41% humidity. I am quite sore and it is quite hot, however. Mayhaps I will not run after all. I’ll be at your place shortly after 6pm with my game in hand.
Q: When did you rename your penis?
A: I rename him every week or so. Last week it was TerrorHorn. Before that it was Deathwish Carl. Now it’s My Game. I’m thinking about Rashy BubbleHead next.
Thursday, May 31, 2007
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Monday, May 28, 2007
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Saturday, May 26, 2007
Sheila came to Rochester today sorta last minute and spent the day with me. I was all too happy to oblige. I had an early start off to the grocery store to prepare for Sunday's festivities which include a picnic and a lot of manual labor to come. Sheila and I had lunch after catching up on everything at 'King and I'. I even ate carbs for this woman. That's love. ;) And then she helped me make dirt pudding with flower cookies. They're turning out great and are ready for "planting" for tomorrow. Plus, she gave me a present of Indian snacks! How great is she? Raquella came over to help out for an hour before Sheila and her sister headed back to Bing... sad.
And the dozen cookies I made with sticks for flowers:
And the "dirt" planters.. made out of chocolate brownies, chocolate pudding and crushed oreos for the dirt.
Don't be too impressed. While I bought everything, I got the idea from a present I saw the other day. ;)
Friday, May 25, 2007
Yes, I took that. This summer I'm going to try to get out and take more pictures. I've taken such a long hiatus from photography that I've almost lost interest. And now I find out my mother is hoping I give her my camera. Sigh. Oh, and my laptop. And I'm considering that one. It's over three years old now and I would love to get a brand new model. I priced them and the one I want is slightly over $1,700. That's how much the current one was, but at least I might be able to get $400 out of my mother for the laptop. It certainly isn't worth 0.
Sheila is coming up to Rochester this weekend, which is all around happy but also pushes some plans back. But I'd do anything to spend some time with her, so it's not a problem. I just have to help out my aunt with her tree and bush trimming some other time. I don't know how long she'll be here, but this weekend bears plans of a picnic and some quality time with my mother. I do worry I do not spend enough time with her. But between her and I, we've lost over 50lbs. which I think is an accomplishment all our own.
Last night's game night went really well. Had a lot of fun, even if I didn't win but one out of 5 games. Tried my best in one of my favorite games, but ended up trading a close 2nd place with a very very far last place by a stupid move at the very end. My luck in games is not that good. My luck at guessing is much better.
I currently have to deal with the loudest, most obnoxious noises above my office as they renovate the floor above me. We have new bosses which means they want their entire floor molded to their whim. I don't blame them at all (except for the imported sparkling spring water and imported specialty coffees they now demand), but the noise is sorta unbearable. And major changes are coming to our office after July 1st, which is really exciting and sorta weird. I don't know if I'll be working here a year from now and all these changes seem really great and important. But unless I start to supervise someone, I don't see why I would stay. I've reached the end of my growth here.
And speaking of growth, my MBA is like 95% done. I was supposed to finish in August, walking in 2 weeks in graduation, but this summer they offer 3 classes I can take, and none of them have absolutely anything to do with my majors or plans. Finance? No. Accounting? No. Ugh. So I may take the summer off from classes and finish up this fall. That might work out. I will enjoy having my entire summer off. That's June 1st through September 27th that I'll have to lay in the sun, read, swim and all the other fun things I enjoy.
We're getting close to vacation. Nola and I are counting down toward liftoff. I paid for everything for my entire family which has been heavy on the wallet but should be well worth it. My time off from work starts June 4 and goes until the 22nd. Then I fly to Ohio to a conference. I actually plan to present some stuff to a session there, which should be great for the resume, experience and all around job experience. I finally feel completely comfortable in my job and have nowhere to go except to coast. But back to California. We leave Wednesday the 6th and come back 7 days later. It feels sorta short, but Aaron and his wife will be coming back with us to spend another 10 days. I look forward to seeing all the sights there are to see and hopefully bumping into Cindy again while I'm out there.
I need to go to lunch. Talk again!
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Monday, May 21, 2007
Friday, May 18, 2007
Thursday, May 17, 2007
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Sunday, May 13, 2007
Friday, May 11, 2007
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Monday, May 07, 2007
And this is why I'm in business school...
The 4-hour work week
I run a thriving business - and spend more hours on sports than work, thanks to simple time management techniques.
FORTUNE Small Business Magazine
By Timothy Ferriss, FSB Magazine
May 7 2007: 12:35 PM EDT
(FSB Magazine) -- When I came across the work of economist Vilfredo Pareto one evening, I had been slaving through 15-hour days, seven days a week, feeling overwhelmed. I run BrainQuicken (brainquicken.com), a six-year-old developer and distributor of sports-nutrition products in San Jose with wholesale customers around the world. I would wake before dawn to make calls to Britain, handle business in the U.S. during the nine-to-five day, then work until near midnight phoning Japan and New Zealand.
Pareto created a formula demonstrating that 80 percent of the income in society is produced and owned by 20 percent of the population. This highly debated principle, known as Pareto's law, also applies in other situations. For instance, 80 percent of company profits typically come from 20 percent of the products and customers.
Facing certain burnout, I decided to see how Pareto's 19th-century concept applied to my company by pinpointing the sources of most of my sales - and my problems - so I could spend my time more efficiently. I quickly realized that of more than 120 wholesale customers, a mere five were bringing in 95 percent of the revenue.
In the next 24 hours, I made several simple but emotionally difficult decisions that changed my life forever. First, I decided to stop pursuing most of my customers so I could profile and duplicate the most profitable ones. I was spending most of my time working on small accounts, when the big five already ordered regularly, without any follow-up.
I put the customers in the unproductive majority on passive mode. All my complaints came from them. If they ordered, great - let them fax in the order. If not, I would do absolutely no chasing: no phone calls, no e-mail, nothing.
I also had to abandon being busy for being productive. I came from a nine-to-five culture and had adopted that schedule without considering alternatives. I realized I could reduce my hours by limiting tasks to the critical few and cutting my work time to force myself to focus on the most important projects.
One way to keep my schedule lean was through a low-information diet. I never watch the news or buy the newspaper. I read the headlines through newspaper machines as I walk to lunch each day. My selective ignorance has never caused a single problem for me.
I also decided to avoid meetings, unless they were for making decisions. If someone proposes that I sit down with him or "set a time to talk on the phone," I ask him to e-mail an agenda to define the purpose, and I set an end time. Decisions should take 30 minutes or less.
To avoid wasting time on business e-mail, I check it only an hour each Monday. I weaned myself from logging in, starting by turning off the audible alert and looking at it twice a day, at noon and 4. Then I reduced the frequency. I never log into e-mail first thing in the morning. I complete my most important task before 11 a.m.
Reducing the number of e-mails I receive also helps. I have outsourced customer service for order tracking and returns. Because I initially handled product-related questions myself, I received more than 200 e-mails a day. Most were from customer service reps seeking permission for simple actions, such as replacing a shipment a customer hadn't received.
I decided to e-mail permission to all customer-service supervisors to resolve any problem that took less than $100 to fix without contacting me. That reduced my messages to about 20 per week. It also freed up more than 100 hours a month, customers received faster service, and returns dropped to less than 3 percent (vs. an industry average of 10 percent to 15 percent). The result? Rapid growth and higher profit margins.
To limit my e-mail obligation further, I rely on outsourced personal assistants in India to manage my in-box and handle other time wasters. The cost: just $4 to $10 an hour.
By avoiding most telephone calls, I save even more time. I use two phone numbers - one (nonurgent) office line and one (urgent) cellular one. I keep my office phone on silent mode and let it go to voicemail. A message tells callers that I check and return calls at noon and 4, directing them to my mobile phone for urgent messages. It encourages them to leave an e-mail address. If I don't immediately recognize an incoming number on my cell phone, I let the call go to voicemail so I can gauge the true urgency.
I never check voicemail abroad. What if there is an emergency? It doesn't happen. Problems solve themselves if you empower others to handle them.
It was four years ago that I discovered Pareto's law. Thanks to his ideas, I now work four hours a week and project $1.2 million in sales at my business for the next fiscal year. (For more on my techniques, see 4hourworkweek.com.) I've had time to set a world record in tango, pursue my passion for martial arts, and learn surfing on the beaches of Brazil. I have the freedom to enjoy a millionaire's lifestyle without waiting for retirement.
Find this article at CNN Money.
Posted by Luke at 2:05 PM