Loo Loves: The Tipping Point, Miss Davis, & Leila-girl
Well hello my friends. Welcome to a more formal installment of Loo Loves. I just want to share a bit more of my life with you, whether you like it or not, and quite possibly several things that have the ability to at least change and hopefully really improve your life. Let's hop to it... 1. I LOVE my timer from Anthropology. I have been working very hard since the new year to increase my productivity, and this gem has been a big help in that process. My rule of thumb is to set it for 20 minutes and tape my behind to my office chair. I work on one task and one task alone until the timer scares me to death. The only interruptions allowed are client calls + client visits. In which case, I take note of the time and reset as soon as I'm back to working. No emails, No Facebook, No Blogs, No Anything until what I'm working on is wrapped up. Most of the time I can complete my task in the 20 minutes, or at least get my brain so deep that I don't dare to stop -- rather, I work to complete the work.
2. My Simmons Beautyrest Classic Mattress was my graduation present for completing life at WKU -- and as strange as it was, it was quite possibly the most wonderful gift I have ever received. Thanks Mom and Dad! My parents are looking at new mattresses this week, so I finally had to check out the specs on mine so they could test one out. Basically...this mattress will change your life. And maybe I only say that because for the 4 years previous to this bed, I was sleeping on dorm and apartment nasties, but really - it's amazing. Worst part is waking up and having to leave the bed unoccupied. If they would make an office chair out of this bed, no matter the price, I would own it.
3. Props to Leila girl, who was spayed earlier last week. She's been a trooper and I've been a bad mom. Ya see, I never wanted to get her fixed when I was at school because my favorite veterinarian, Dr. Mike Johnson, wouldn't be able to do it with my gone-during-the-week schedule, so I waited. Until last week and she's a whopping 3-years-old now, so needless to say, it may have been a bit more painful of a recovery than had I done it while she was a babe. Either way, she's still sulking around whining, and I've been treating her to some Cesar food, since she isn't super interested in eating. And this picture - well it's a topiary form of a Westie. If I had even a little bit of a green thumb, I would grab that up and try to grow a little Leila.
4. So she'll probably be creeped out by seeing her face there, but my classmate, Leslye Davis deserves to hit the Loo Loves for sure. When you first meet her, you'll be captivated by her adorableness - I remember calling her cupcake in school - and that sums it up quite well. She's beautiful, kind, so sweet and can tell one heck of a story - not that a cupcake can do that last part, but hey.
So little, Miss Davis took home quite the honor last week, Pictures of the Year International's Multimedia Portfolio of the Year. POYi is international, obviously, but as a student, she competed against industry professionals, pillars in the business if you will and ended up on top. So. I'll need you to check out her work.
Exit Wounds will make you cry, change your perspective on suicide and abuse and generally break your heart, so save that when for when you get home. Keep Going is one of my most favorite happy afternoon, break your heart and make you smile pieces to watch. Sherman Price is one heck of a 96-year-old oldest, ugliest, dumbest, contrariest, plus the poorest man breeding Angus in Kentucky. Don't take my word for it. Watch! Leaving Without Absence will also break your heart, but really change your perspective.
And though this last piece wasn't part of her entry, I often watch it and admire Leslye's amazing eye and spirit. She really is an artist in the most truest sense - writing this poem and creating this piece is such a skill. Moral of the story, POYi is on top of things -- the award couldn't have gone to a more wonderful, kind or amazing spirit. Done.
5. The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell is my first book review from my 101 in 1001 list. Since I've started this little Lizzie Loo monster, I have been an avid reader of business books and I really think that business owner or not, everyone should pick up a few each year. They'll change your mind. Without further ado, my thoughts...
The Tipping Point sat on my shelf for quite a long time. I had other books to keep up with for clubs or friends who I was reading with, so it sat there. All white and alone with black font just a'decorating my bookshelf. Now that I've read it, I wish I had done so sooner. And now that I've read it, I will be sure to move Malcolm's other books up in my to-read list.
It helps tremendously that Malcolm has the ease of a 90-year-old gentleman telling stories. I could read words the man writes about paint drying or how to bathe a Westie and enjoy every minute of it. He is a great storyteller - something I aspire to be - and his writing is full of solid, well-told and thoroughly researched stories. He talks of the removal of subway grafitti turning New Yorkers into better citizens, his immunity to email, how disease spreads, even the telephones and beepers we've filled teen's lives with that have now rendered them numb. But he uses it all to back the concept of word-of-mouth. In the words of Mr. Gladwell, "when people are overwhelmed with information and develop immunity to traditional forms of communication, they turn instead for advice and information to the people in their lives whom they respect, admire and trust. The cure for immunity is finding mavens, connectors and salesman."
Now you're wondering what mavens, connectors and salesman are....right? Wrong, because you can probably gather from the words themselves what they mean, but Malcolm's connections and identification of personality traits is really amazing. I've always known I'm a small-scale connector. Ask anyone I spend a bit of time with. I have the most random group of friends that I am continually insisting must meet one another and ba-bam, so many great things have come out of initially strange friendships. However, my random friend group can make birthday and Friday night gatherings a little awkward for the first 10 minutes, when no one knows anyone but me. Now to work on my maven and salesman skills - I am quite possibly the world's worst salesman. So fake and awkward feeling.
Another other bit of wisdom I gleaned from the book is the story of Georgia Sadler who was working to raise awareness about breast cancer and diabetes in a black, San Diego community. After a bit of thinking, her story applies so deeply to our small town atmosphere. On a small budget, she thought how to most effectively spread the word through a group of folks who didn't care about her message and didn't have time: the hair salon. Her target audience spent hours in the beauty chair talking with their hair stylist/best friend who they visited often and trusted MUCH. Georgia planted the stories of finding cancer early and tacking diabetes in the barbers and hairstylists who then relayed stories and information week after week to their captive audience. The information eventually tipped and Miss Sadler made much out of a previously unimportant, yet life changing series of facts turned, essentially, gossip. Brilliant, if you ask me.
Apply this to my own world and I am reminded by late-night knocks at the door that you folks know when I'm home by the existence of my car, and you ask about Leila when she misses a day in the chair. How many other ideas can we make tip just outside the small window on sixth street. (Don't get me pumped on the power of Main Street windows - where people actually drive!) When we installed the wedding dress, 12 of you stopped in to see the 'new dress shop'. Even the Coit man, after a full tour of my home and shop, asked where I kept all the gowns. Uhm....interesting.
The other story that stuck with me was of philanthropist Sharon Karmazin who sent 300 copies out to each public library in her state tied to a promise. If the library staff generated new ideas or projects from the book, she would happily fund it. Over $100,000 has since been gifted to 21 different libraries. That, my friends, is right up my quirky and unordinary ally. It will happen one day.
And I leave you with my most favorite sentences, the rest you'll have to read yourself. And you can even borrow my copy if you're the first one to grab it from the shop!
"How much easier is it to hang hooks of knowledge on a story?" This is why I'm a visual storyteller - because people 'get it' when they see it. Totally the fuel to the story I'm pursuing at Kosair.
"Those who are successful at creating social epidemics do not just do what they think is right. They deliberately test their intuitions." Take a risk, folks. Just a hair past the drinking age, in a recession, I pitched a loan to middle-aged men and look where we are.
"What must underlie successful epidemics, in the end, is a bedrock belief that change is possible or beliefs in the face of the right kind of impetus."
"Look at the world around you. It may seem like an immovable, implacable place. It is not. With the slightest push -- in just the right place -- it can be tipped." Hello, Shelbyville! Come to my wedding dress shop.
"A book, I was taught long ago in English class, is a living and breathing document that grows riicher with each new reading." Swoon. I will re-read.