originally   11

Bullish: Maybe Work-Life Balance Means You Should Work MORE – GetBullish
Maybe Work-Life Balance Means You Should Work MORE
It’s December 30th, time for making New Years’ resolutions that will last until approximately January 13th. But seriously, just as every fitness and weight loss expert will tell you: diets don’t work; instead, you need to make lifestyle changes.
And you need to not be afraid to change your lifestyle to something drastically different than the lifestyles of those around you, whether that means making protein shakes at the office or turning at the grandmotherly hour of 9pm so you can get up at 5am and write that book you’ve been meaning to write.
A lot of career-related writing targeted towards women emphasizes work-life “balance.” So you should really take some time out and nurture yourself, right?
Actually, I’d keep that to a minimum right now. “Balance” is not for the young and sprightly — instead, think of work-life balance over the course of your entire life. Do you intend to retire some day? Would you like to have a baby and invest substantial time in caring for it? If there is some phase of your life during which you will be working 15 hours a week, then maybe you should work 60 now.
This isn’t as difficult or unreasonable as it might seem. In 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think, Laura Vanderkam points out that, of the 168 hours each of us has every week, spending 56 hours sleeping and 60 hours working still leaves 52 hours left for other activities — over 7 hours per day. So, cut out all the fucking around, and you can easily step up your career and life.
Here’s what I mean by “fucking around”: I mean anything that is not extremely productive or extremely pleasurable. For me, that happens when I feel like I’ve been online long enough to read everything interesting … and yet I am still on the internet. Or when I am on the train and have read all the guilty-pleasure articles and find myself perusing announcements about the weddings of actors on shows I have never watched.
If it isn’t extremely productive or extremely pleasurable, just stop. Either eat something healthy that takes five minutes, or have a huge decadent meal with friends for two hours. Either go to the gym and work every fucking muscle in your body like an Olympian, or stay home and find someone to make out with.
If your job requires you to attend pointless meetings, either find a way out (“Dear boss, would you like me to attend this meeting or finish this project before the close of business?”), or use the pointless meeting to your own ends, setting your own private goals: make an ally, impress someone it would be worth impressing, be so prepared that everyone can easily see you in a more responsible position. Treat the pointless meeting like a job interview for the next-best job. Make your commute less of a slog by finding a way to make it productive or pleasurable — either way. Make a list of all your forms of recreation, and kill off the least pleasurable ones. Is looking at Modcloth dresses you can’t afford as fun as eating chocolate in the bathtub? Why play Farmville when you could be trying new sexual positions and photographing the results for nostalgic reminiscence when you are elderly?
Cutting out the fucking around and devoting that time to work actually is balanced, if you think of your life as a bell curve — you spent childhood not working, you will likely spend old age not working; there will be some decline of work if you have children, or have to care for aging parents, or when you simply suffer the slings and arrows of your own aging process.
Female fertility is seriously reduced at age 35. If you want to have a baby, you should make every effort to do it before then (remember, for every happy 39-year-old mom you know, there is someone else stabbing herself in the stomach with expensive hormone injections; people just don’t talk about that as much). If your ability to produce income will be seriously reduced at that time, count backwards: you have 13 years, max, between the end of college and the end of a safe window of fertility. Sites like Guru and Elance are full of moms looking for a way to make money part-time from home; many of them are offering to be your virtual assistant, competing with people in India charging $5 an hour. The prospects are not great. If you want to work part-time from home, best to set that up before you get pregnant. You need to be so in-demand that reducing the supply of your labor actually drives up prices; you want your skills to be so valuable to others that people will take whatever small slice of you they can get, even if it means you work online in the middle of the night when your kid’s asleep.
A thirteen-year span during which you are supposed to both launch and peak is simply no time for scaling back or fucking around.
If you attended a competitive college in the last fifteen years, you probably worked seriously hard as a young person in order to make that happen. You probably had the foresight to realize that parties you didn’t attend, drugs you didn’t try, social scenes and squabbles you didn’t become invested in, would redound to your later success. As a teenager, I knew I had to get the hell out of Virginia, at any cost. I applied to one hundred and twenty five scholarship competitions. I stopped looking in mirrors; I let my teenage acne run unabated. I ignored people whose concerns did not extend in time or space outside the walls of a high school. I figured there would be time later for looking pretty and maintaining friendships with more interesting people I would go on to meet in some future, better life. The more gushy messages in your yearbook, the more time you probably should’ve spent studying. Working incredibly hard and denying pleasures in high school has an exponential effect on the rest of your life; why would your twenties not have the same effect on your forties?
In some ways, stepping up your working life is actually easier than scaling back. If you only exercise one hour a week, it seems like a waste of time, because that’s not enough exercise to make a big difference in your health or appearance. It’s actually easier to exercise an hour a day than an hour a week, because at the hour-a-day level, you definitely see results — and you see that stopping would cause you to lose those results. At an hour a day, you feel like you’re competing at something and winning.
Similarly, did you ever notice that it’s actually harder to lazily drag yourself up the subway steps than it is to think of the stairs as exercise and jet up them in a focused way? Lazy is draining; it only makes you lazier. Similarly, work — any kind of work — is so much harder when you tune out on your way there, listening to your iPod and wishing you were elsewhere. Going balls-out for a fifty-hour week, cultivating an obsession with what you do, is so much easier than dragging your sorry ass in to a job in which you are only partially engaged.
So, rather than making New Years’ resolutions, how about this — three questions to ask in order to make stepping it up a sustainable part of this phase of your life:
1. What is the most painless way to fit in ten more productive hours per week? Where can you schedule an extra session and not resent it? Do you work at a job where, for the first two hours, everyone just checks email and wanders around like zombies? Can you redeem that time, such as by getting up earlier, using your commute time to psych yourself up, and then slamming out something important in the morning — or, if your job truly is a pointless endeavor, can you use that time for something else (without getting fired)? What unpleasurable, time-sucking fucking around can you cut out of your life and not miss? Can you take twelve hours of slightly-pleasurable CSI-and-Kardashian-watching and replace it with two hours of petting adorable kitties and then drinking Scotch, thus saving ten hours while still effecting a net increase in pleasure? How about doing something productive every Saturday from 5-7pm, when it’s kind of lame to be out, and when you know you will immediately reward your hard work with socializing and booze?
2. How can you best spend this extra time? When I say you should work more at this phase of your life, I don’t necessarily mean that you should give this time to your boss, unless there is a direct way to make gains in this manner in your current position. I mean that you can’t just have a job anymore. I mean that you should use these hours to write a book. Or to learn a new skill. Or to read books in your field and write commentary on them, and then send this out as an email newsletter, or write for or create a blog in your industry. Or you should volunteer somewhere in a way that also bolsters your resume and network, such as by gaining fundraising, event planning, or PR experience with a nonprofit. The more you become engaged in your field outside of your job, the more you keep your company engaged in the need to continually pursue you and keep you satisfied (like when you lose weight or buy a new wardrobe while you’re in a relationship, and your partner gets a little scared). The more you are a professional in your field rather than just an employee, the more your boss begins to see you as a peer, and the more job or freelance offers will simply drop into your inbox, even when you’re not looking.
3. How can you make this extra work pleasant? Personally, I put an outdoor desk on my balcony (see photo above — obviously taken pre-blizzard). That was a bit pricey, of course (my having a balcony is a direct result of the financial crisis and the concomitant drop in Wall Street rents). But when I lived in a decrepit apartment in East Harlem and made $17,000 a year, I bought a $3 plastic tub at the corner store and would fill it with hot water and bath salts and soak my feet in it while I sat at my desk. Also, fun fact: champagne doesn’t actually cost more than regular wine. You can soak your feet and drink champagne while you work for … [more]
originally  published  on  The  Gloss  from iphone
may 2018 by heapdump
go ahead and move along - originally
"Leave, Parse," Jack says. Again.

Or: Kent finds himself stuck in a time loop. [8,532 words]
checkplease!  jack/kent  originally  timeloop 
may 2016 by cunningplan
In playoffs, expect the unexpected – ESPN
ESPNPast decade has taught us that No. 1 seeds are far from safe, especially in NFC. Originally Published: January 3, 2014. By Adam Schefter | ESPN.com. Recommend0
IFTTT  Zennie62  Sports  Adam  Schefter  ESPN  nfc  Originally  Published  January  playoffs 
january 2014 by zennie62
Alexander Cockburn, 1941-2012 - The Daily Beast
Alexander Cockburn, 1941-2012
Let’s cut to the chase and get this out of the way: Yes, Alexander Cockburn took some strange and indefensible positions. I worked for Alex, the radical journalist who died this weekend of cancer at 71, as a Nation intern in 1987. Three years later, he hit what I always regarded as his low point, trying to prove in a series of columns that Stalin’s death toll was closer to 3.5 million or so than 20 million (leading to a denunciation in the National Review that was adorned by what remains the funniest headline I’ve ever seen in that journal: “Alexander Cockburn, A Voice of Moderation”).
AP Photo
I remember reading those columns (and I was surprised that the Times fetched up the memory of them in its obituary, as if the black mark had been entered in their computers all those years ago, just waiting for this day) and thinking to myself that I was glad it was mostly Nicaragua when I was with him—denouncing the contras was a far easier job.
You would not pair us ideologically. He retained his affiliation as a committed Marxist until the end. I, after some half-hearted youthful feints in that direction, settled into the Roosevelt-Humphrey-King liberalism in which I was raised. But I always retained a strong personal fondness for him. For one thing, he was very nice to me when I was young, and I try to make it a habit of being nice to people who are nice to me (Christopher Hitchens also: To be a Nation intern in those days and have the benefit of the generous counsel of both of them was a memorable thing). For another, he emphatically was not wrong about everything, and it’s important that that point be recorded.
It’s probably impossible for people to understand this today, but Alex struck American journalism like lightning when he first started writing for The Village Voice in, I think, 1974. First of all, the Voice really mattered then. When I studied journalism in college, the Voice was there in my intro mass communications textbook—the first and most important alternative newspaper, its place in the profession’s history already assured, with towering figures like Nat Hentoff, Jack Newfield, Ellen Willis, and Andrew Sarris, the great film critic (and lovely man) who just passed away last month.
I remember that Norman Mailer once said of Murdoch’s New York Post that whatever you thought of its politics, “It was alive; you could argue with it, you could bite it.” A great sentence that applies in spades to the Voice of the 70s. You would be outraged on this page, drawn in on that one; you’d roll your eyes at the self-indulgence you encountered on the third: But you were reacting. I was a kid in remote Morgantown, West Virginia, but I subscribed for a little while, and while I didn’t understand most of what I was reading about, strange performance art and films that would sure never be screened in Morgantown, I was still able to sense that something important and fresh was radiating out of that chaotic energy.
Into this milieu, Alex landed from England. It’s worth recalling that he was the first. Modern America’s first exposure to that literary, highly lapidary, polysyllabically festooned, and sometimes grotesquely overstated and unfair brand of polemicism that we now know so well. He blazed the trail that Hitchens and others followed. He was also America’s first modern press critic. A.J. Liebling, I would argue, did something a little different. The idea of weekly items critiquing the ideological presumptions of this particular Times article or that particular Washington Post column was invented by Alex.
Today, we have criticism of criticism of criticism, and the idea of bashing the Times for this or that piece, from right or left, has become so normal as to be banal, usually. But Alex’s weekly “Press Clips” columns were riotously original. My older sister and her friends first introduced me to those columns; they said his very name with a kind of mystified, how-did-he-come-up-with-that wonder.
A decade later, I was working for him. His preoccupation in those days was the Cold War and its emanations and penumbras, to use two very Cockburnian words, and there, agree with him or not, his perspective was absolutely necessary. He saw through the domino rhetoric on El Salvador and Nicaragua, and he was right: I don’t think many people can look back on those days and conclude that it was a grand idea for the United States to be financing and arming death squads that existed to defend oligarchies.
On Israel, he became controversial and was called anti-Semitic because he wrote regularly about topics that were way off limits then: Israel’s torture of Palestinian prisoners, or what he didn’t mind calling the fascist roots of some Likud politicians. He was out there, no doubt of that. But his basic thesis about the wrongheadedness of the Israeli occupation and of unblinking American support for it is obviously correct. The reason he was so controversial then was that he didn’t write from inside the system to persuade and convince. He wrote from outside it to traduce and condemn. I’m the former type, but I understand that the world needs both kinds.
In 2004, I debated him on the San Francisco Pacifica radio station (via telephone) about whether one should vote Kerry or Nader. Obviously I took the Kerry position, and I daresay I got the better of him, a thought that would have been inconceivable to me 17 years prior. It sounded as if his heart wasn’t really in it for old Ralph. After the show ended, I called him, or he called me, and we had a nice and pleasant catch-up, our first long conversation in years, and as far as I can recall our last one. We had a few email exchanges more recently. In one of those I wrote to criticize him for something or other, and I opened by saying “I know you probably think I’m a sellout and a stooge these days, but...” I don’t remember the substance of what he wrote back, but he did say: “Sellout, maybe; stooge, never!”
I read him intermittently in recent years. His climate-change denialism was just nuts. It struck me as motivated by his longstanding desire to offend liberal sensibility, at which pursuit he succeeded. But his legacy shouldn’t be reduced to that. He deserves for people interested in such things to remember what a pioneer he was in his best days. And when he ranged the slightest bit off-topic, away from the politics of the moment, he produced some of the most jewel-like essays I’ve ever read.
If you can find them, go online and look for his reminiscence of Heatherdown, the posh boys' school he attended; his piss-your-pants hilarious essay on Robert Baden-Powell, the British imperialist and Boy Scouts founder; his rollicking assay of Ian Fleming; and even his writing on food and wine, the Marxist as epicure (I think most of the foregoing appeared in his collection Corruptions of Empire, which I recommend highly). The theme of social class weaves through all of those pieces, but so do great doses of humor and irony. I learned from those articles, lessons about rhythm and pacing and when to stick the dagger in and when to sheath it.
I remember in the old Nation offices, there was messy shelf of papers that was Alex’s. He didn’t live in New York and didn’t come into the office much, so he posted a hand-written sign up there: “Do not touch! These papers are Alexander Cockburn’s! Fierce Dog!” I remember thinking that a lot of people would say “Cockburn, fierce dog” is about right. But I saw another side of him, and I don’t care how "controversial" he was, I always liked him and will always be grateful to him.
UPDATE:  In  the  first  graf_  I  originally  had  500_000  instead  of  3.5  million.  Apologies  for  the  error.  from iphone
july 2012 by ketzface
Annual Faerie & Church Ladies for Choice Drag March / New York
Annual Faerie & Church Ladies for Choice Drag March / New York, originally uploaded by See-ming Lee 李思明SML. Seen at the Scene. This photograph is part of the Annual Faerie & Church Ladies for Choice Drag March / Gay Pride / New York ...
Google.Alerts.Blogs  See-ming-Lee  Annual  Faerie  Church  Ladies  for  Choice  Drag  March  New  York_  originally  uploaded  by  See-ming  Lee  李思明SML.  Seen  at  the  Scene.  photograph  is  part  of  Gay  Pride  York 
september 2007 by seeminglee
Hiro at the Maritime Hotel / 20070910.10D.45764 / SML
Hiro at the Maritime Hotel / 20070910.10D.45764 / SML, originally uploaded by See-ming Lee 李思明SML. Hiro at the Maritime Hotel SML Flickr Tags SML Flickr Tags: Gay SML Flickr Tags: Hiro SML Flickr Tags: Life SML Flickr Tags: NYC ...
Google.Alerts.Blogs  李思明  Hiro  at  the  Maritime  Hotel  20070910.10D.45764  SML_  originally  uploaded  by  See-ming  Lee  李思明SML.  SML  Flickr  Tags  Tags:  Gay  Life  NYC 
september 2007 by seeminglee

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