Monthly Archives: July 2015

Friday time

When Friday rolls around, what happens?

Do you count the minutes until it’s time?

Or do you count the minutes like you’re running out of it?

Seek the latter.

15 and 5

Remember that 55-minute timer I mentioned a while back?

You know, work for 55 minutes then take a break for five? Get up, stretch, chug water, pee, etc.

Well, I’ve been playing with a new version of that.

The 15-minute timer.

It’s fifteen minutes of work followed by five minutes of break.

Seems like a lot of breaking, right? 25% of your work day is spent NOT working.

But isn’t that the case already? (Even when I was doing a 55-minute timer, I’d only get through a few full cycles with the rest of the day spent goofing around).

This way, your breaks are scheduled and the time you DO work is more productive.

With fifteen minutes on, five minutes off, I’m feeling:

  • More productive with day (as a whole).
  • More aware of how I’m spending my time.
  • More efficient with tasks (not getting lost in minute details that don’t move the needle).

I’ve been using the free focus booster app for a few days now. Try it?

[HT to NF for the 15 and 5 suggestion]

Gain for two

Losing things is no fun.

I don’t need to explain why.

But here’s why it’s not so bad:

  • New home. If you lost it, someone else found it. Exciting for them.
  • New thing. Go get yourself a new pair of sunglasses or baseball glove or cell phone. Exciting for you and good for the economy.
  • Things are things. Maybe you don’t need to replace it?

Sure, losing things that have zero value to the finder (your car keys) has few redeeming factors.

But for everything else, your loss is a gain for two.

You in a meeting right now?

Is it a complete waste of your time?

What if you left?

You know. Just gathered your things and walked out the door.

Would you be in trouble?

Or would the opposite happen?

People whose time is valuable sometimes just need to leave. The important ones.

Is that you?

The Worst

You can usually identify who’s “the worst.”

  • The worst at work.
  • The worst in social settings.
  • The worst amongst a group with whom you have zero personal relationship (celebs, athletes, etc.).

Ugh, they’re the worst.

But when you say that out loud, you instantly become incorrect.

Now, it’s you.

Rhyme requests

In life, there are some annoying requests we have to make.

  • Do this.
  • Don’t do that.
  • Remember to do the thing you’ll forget which will upset me, and therefore, upset you.

So how do we make these requests without sounding annoying (and actually get the results we’re looking for)?

Rhyme time.

(Many of these examples are urine-related. Oh well.)

“If it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown flush it down.”

“If you sprinkle when you tinkle, please be neat and wipe the seat.”

“If you kill it, fill it.”

Isn’t that more pleasant than nagging and / or negotiating?

What other rhyme requests do you use?

Yes, I quit

Want to quit something?

You can’t set a date. Or stop for any other arbitrary reason.

Before you quit, you have to start.

Start with “no”, add “I’m not”, and be damn proud of it.

No, I don’t work there anymore. I’m not a corporate slave.

No, thanks. I’m not a father who smokes.

No, we should leave now. I’m not the guy who shows up late.

Once you’ve changed your identity by using “no” and “I’m not”, then you can say “yes.”

“Yes, I quit that.”


Can we talk about fireworks for a second?

What’s better than a precisely executed fireworks display on the 4th of July?

  • They’re beautiful.
  • They’re symbolic of freedom.
  • They’re an opportunity to have a moment with a loved one away from your phone (unless you’re watching through it).

But beyond the professional fireworks shows, I gotta ask:

Can we not?

Why are amateur fireworks “shows” still a thing?

Amateur fireworks shows are unsafe. Like, really unsafe. Burned eyebrows and lost appendages unsafe. Who’s paying the ER bills?

Amateur fireworks shows incite violence. 44 shootings and 8 deaths, including a seven-year-old, in the Chicagoland area on this year’s 4th of July. What better time to shoot a gun when people won’t think twice about the sound?

Amateur fireworks shows are obnoxious. They’re loud, messy and are miserably unimpressive. Few things are more upsetting (for a dog lover and person who likes peace) than living in the heart of Chicago and trying to take your dog to go pee at 11 pm on the evening of July 4th. It’s like walking the beaches of Normandy on D-day.

People, this is my call for crippling penalties for amateur, unlicensed firework shows.

The fines will generate revenue for the city, we’ll have fewer ER visits, and a more peaceful existence now that we, since 1776, have earned it.


You, now, got this

Want to impress your boss? Or maybe get one of your teammates to instantly appreciate you?

Tell ’em “I got this.”

Take the responsibility off their plate and onto yours.

And if you’re collaborating over email, do it buy saying this:

“I’m moving boss / teammate / personal-responsible-for-the-task to BCC.”

They’re off the email chain and know you, now, got this.

Think about how amazing it is to get that email.

Great, huh?

[HT to DP for telling my Monday softball team he’s “moving me to BCC” and handling the weekly roster shuffle while I’m out of the office (at the lake).]

What does your away message say?

I’m out of the office..


I’ll be out of the office from July 3 until July 15.

In case of emergency…


I will have limited access to email.


I will be checking email, but won’t respond unless it’s a real emergency.


In case of an emergency, please contact my assistant.

Aw, fuck it. 

Who am I kidding with this out of office crap anyway? You just saw the subject line and read no further. You know the deal.


For real though. I’m trying to go off the grid. Figure it out.


I’m not doing email for one week. I’m going to return energized and motivated. You should give it a try. Love, Lenny

Okay, that will do.