Super Kale Pesto

Super Kale Pesto

For all of the hype around kale over the last few years, I still find it requires some thoughtful preparation to make it truly delicious. I’ve had mixed results with sauteing it, and a raw kale salad really calls for lots of other prep-heavy ingredients: beets, sliced almonds or pecans, preferably some bacon. But it does offer some nutritional benefits (it’s a good source of vitamins A, C, and K1), is reasonably economical, and, unlike some other greens, actually looks pretty darn good during the winter months. But the challenge of easily making kale delicious remains. There are “chips”, but they’re not really fulfilling. Luckily, we stopped to drop something off at our friends’ house the other night and ended up staying for an impromptu visit. While we were talking and laughing, our friend Cat was exercising some of her characteristic creativity in the kitchen. She made a fantastic (and dead simple) kale pesto which she stuffed into some cheese...
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Skepticism vs. Cynicism

Skepticism vs. Cynicism

A while back I was enjoying a conversation about politics, economics, and the state of everything with my well-seasoned, good natured friend Greg. Because he reads widely and is a renaissance man, I always walk away from our conversations with something (usually several things) of value.  In this particular case, I described myself as “cynical” of politicians and political machinery. Greg listened to this claim and, after a beat, suggested that he tries to remain “skeptical” rather than “cynical”. Huh. Greg’s astute and thoughtful distinction taught me something. While both words express an element of doubt, calling myself “cynical” was an excuse to be intellectually lazy. A cynic just assumes the worst without investigating. Cynics distrust others, assuming that everyone is motivated by selfish self-interest. This shoot it down first and don’t bother to ask questions approach is a kind of prejudice--a pre-judgement based only on the most superficial or cursory knowledge of a person, issue, or situation. Importantly, the cynic--even...
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Courage vs. Bravery

Courage vs. Bravery

A few nights ago, I was engaging in one of my favorite Saturday night rituals: listening to an episode of Says You on the radio while preparing a homemade meal with my partner, and enjoying a glass of wine. This particular episode was a repeat, hosted by the late Richard Sher (pronounced "sure") and it started off with a round of “What’s the Difference”? Among the pairs of words the panel had to distinguish between were preserve (to go out and actively protect) and conserve (to use cautiously and maintain in an original state) and dirt (disintegrated rock and humus) and soil (a living environment with nutrients and the potential for supporting life). But the one that caught my interest most viscerally was when Richard asked the panel what the difference between courage and bravery is. The first formative guesses started with the idea that the Latin root of courage is “cor”, or "heart" (the words for heart in French, Italian,...
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Ego, Ergo Sum.

Ego, Ergo Sum.

Last week, a friend who is a successful freelance writer met with me to share some insights and starting points. I walked away with a valuable list of places to start some good strategy--apply to different places rather than relying on one or two agencies, ask for 50% up front when dealing with private clients, and there was a quick mention of developing a thick skin. I was excited to have so much actionable info and was ready to go. A few days after our meeting, the skin thickening has begun. I’ve already landed my first rejection! Not a rejection from a client, but a rejection from an agency that connects writers and clients. In other words, I didn’t even make it to the client level. In fact, after reading two samples I’d written, they didn’t even want to have me as a freelancer at their agency. When I completed the samples, I thought they were pretty good. Not my best...
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Mr. Money Mustache on The Tim Ferriss Show

Mr. Money Mustache on The Tim Ferriss Show

I don’t actually smash my fist through the driver window of pickup trucks and honk the horns with their foreheads and tell them they shouldn’t be going through the drive through with this stupid, off road diesel thing, but...I think it...and I write it...Mr. Money Mustache is a little more violent in his writing. --Pete Adeney, on the difference between himself and his online alter ego, Mr. Money Mustache.   Right on the heels of my shout out post, Tim Ferriss (he of The 4 hour Work Week and The 4 Hour Body fame) posted a podcast with one of the folks I mentioned--Mr. Money Mustache. I mention it here in case folks want to check it out. I have read two of Ferriss’s books and listened to many of his podcasts and I’ve read many of the articles on Adeney’s site, so I was eager to hear the two chew the fat. Tim interviews a wide range of people on his show, the unifying theme...
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