Life is not about focusing on the obstacles. It’s about how you handle them, and whether you get enlightenment or levity from the way your do it.
In 1932, the famous writer and painter, Henry Miller, created a work schedule that listed his “Commandments” for him to follow as part of his daily routine. This list was published in the book,Henry Miller on Writing.
- Work on one thing at a time until finished.
- Start no more new books, add no more new material to “Black Spring.”
- Don’t be nervous. Work calmly, joyously, recklessly on whatever is in hand.
- Work according to Program and not according to mood. Stop at the appointed time!
- When you can’t create you can work.
- Cement a little every day, rather than add new fertilizers.
- Keep human! See people, go places, drink if you feel like it.
- Don’t be a draught-horse! Work with pleasure only.
- Discard the Program when you feel like it—but go back to it next day.Concentrate. Narrow down. Exclude.
- Forget the books you want to write. Think only of the book you are writing.
- Write first and always. Painting, music, friends, cinema, all these come afterwards.
Easy reading is damn hard writing.
Dove: Thought Before Action (by Ogilvy Toronto)
I’m not funny. What I am is brave.
About a week ago I decided I needed a pain au chocolat with enough urgency to give the new Starbucks pastry line a try. The marketing campaign certainly made these food products seem delightful, and packaging made them look even better. Why not?
Here’s why not:
The marketing promise is not authentic for several reasons—
1. Customer Service: The team at Starbucks is not well-trained and unable to describe the French menu. I asked for a pain au chocolat but the team member didn’t know what that was, she only understood chocolate croissant; that should have been my first clue
2. Food Preparation: I received a scalding hot ‘chocolate croissant’.
3. Attitude, Attitude: When I asked for a different ‘chocolate croissant’ because mine was way too hot, I was told that all pastries come hot now. I explained that mine was much too hot and that traditionally, bakeries in France (and authentic French bakeries in the U.S.) do not reheat pastry because it ruins the layers in the dough. I got the skunk eye and roll.
4. Quality of Experience: I ate my not-scalding-hot ‘chocolate croissant’. It was bad. The pastry dough was clearly old, likely frozen for too long, and just not at all airy like a good croissant should be.
Bottom line: Despite all the hype, Starbucks does not serve good food. It serves nasty reheated pastries with attitude at high prices. I’ll save my money for great food.