Monday, 12 May 2014


I would like to import some American customs to football in Europe.

First of all: every sport arena should have an organ. Clearly.

A roll call of starting players and their positions, complete with dramatic music and thunderous applause.

Blooper reels of the opposing team.

Regular stadium-wide singing intervals.

So. Much. Food.

Fireworks. And screens.

A tool race (??). Ok maybe not the tool race.

Cap waves, just changed to scarf waves.

Saturday, 10 May 2014


I once read a post about the "secret" to loving your job.

Pick a job, it said, any job. Find something within that job which do well. Do it more. Become better and better at it. Become the expert. Become indispensable.

Because you picked what that thing was, because you are already quite good at it, you will enjoy doing it and improving that skill. As you become the expert, the go-to person, you also increase your responsibility, which makes us all feel good.

This is exactly what has happened to me in life, and I agree. Whenever I hear people on TV talent shows saying "this is all I ever dreamed of doing" I want to tell them to go out and experience the world a bit more.

Cue Mike Rowe's recent letter giving career advice to somebody who sounds pretty typical, and equally like self-entitled whiny child. Somebody who claims that he will "try pretty much everything" and blankets that statement in all the requirements he has for any job he could ever possibly hold.

Rowe replies:

Stop looking for the “right” career, and start looking for a job. Any job. Forget about what you like. Focus on what’s available. Get yourself hired. Show up early. Stay late. Volunteer for the scut work. Become indispensable. You can always quit later, and be no worse off than you are today. But don’t waste another year looking for a career that doesn’t exist. And most of all, stop worrying about your happiness. Happiness does not come from a job. It comes from knowing what you truly value, and behaving in a way that’s consistent with those beliefs.Many people today resent the suggestion that they’re in charge of the way the feel. But trust me, Parker. Those people are mistaken. That was a big lesson from Dirty Jobs, and I learned it several hundred times before it stuck. What you do, who you’re with, and how you feel about the world around you, is completely up to you.

Friday, 9 May 2014

Chocolate Pecan Pie

Got bored.

Made pie.

Ocean’s New Book (BSBTE)

On this fine Friday, I add a shameless plug of Ocean’s latest publishing adventure.

Ocean runs the translation agency Acahi, working with a network of freelance translators. Freelance work in general is as exciting as it is intimidating, and in translations more so than in some fields, as you truly are on your own. Where do you start? How do you connect with the proper networks? How do you stand out? And logistics: connecting, communicating and most important of all: getting paid.

Well Acahi is here to help with their new book How to be a successful freelance translator: make translations work for you (see what he did there?)

from Bringing Sexy Back to Economics


Wednesday, 7 May 2014

The saddest sentence you will read this week

"Prison was the first time in her life she had experienced reasonably consistent and decent treatment"

From the article Some to Misery Are Born.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Tuscany and Wine

Your lesson for today, courtesy of Ornella:

Tuscan families were the first in Europe (and therefore in the world) to make wine in an organized way

*One of these families were the Mazzei. Filippo Mazzei was in Paris, sent by the Granduca di Toscana to learn about heating from Benjamin Franklin (the Franklin stove). He learned, came back to Tuscany and here the stove was improved upon: instead of iron it was mane in terracotta, which provided more heat with less consumption. Not only that, but while in Paris he also met Jefferson who invited him to Virginia to teach him how to make wine. He went, and apparently it is his (Filippo's) the sentence: "all men are created equal"

I always said it: Tuscan people rock!!!

Understanding communism (BSBTE)

In the kitchen:

Setting: I am cleaning out our food shelves

Me: I’m going to put the coffee salt and pasta all on the lower shelf since it is what we use the most. I’ll put bread crumbs and flour above.

G: hmmm

Me: …?

G: flour and pasta should be kept together

Me: *sigh* this is the difference between a communist and a free marketeer. A communist rules by ideology, regardless of whether the enforcement is welcome, sensical or beneficial. A free marketeer adapts his approach to human nature and positive outcomes.

G: so I am a communist?

Me: kitchen communist

G: *starts to pour water on my head*

Me: as a free marketeer I probably believe in private gun ownership…

from Bringing Sexy Back to Economics


Monday, 5 May 2014

Polish Potluck

My first ever potluck dinner: check.

And I say "my": G did all the cooking.

What is BSBTE?

It used to be You remember that right?

We have a new domain now: and when a post goes live there it gets copied over to the blog with the BSBTE tag. Read, enjoy, comment over at the original blog, and learn learn learn. 

Saturday, 3 May 2014


In Italy, the man fills up stadiums.

In Atlanta, he performs at Center Stage Atlanta, capacity 1000, and I can pretty much see up his nose.

Wonderful show, wonderful music and all wonderfully performed. Is it rather sad that we are now surprised when a singer sounds as good in person as he does on his recordings?

In any case with the small venue it all felt very intimate, like a private party. Running in to friends at the event, dancing under the stage, singing music from many years of your life, all makes for great times.