Saturday, January 26, 2019

Trump Got Shut Down - HSRPM

I don't answer messages on Saturdays from noon to 2pm. That's when Hal Sparks does the thing.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

My brother was the original "left shark"

I changed my Twitter photo to the one of Halloween...likely 1979? Michael's just a baby. I think I'm wearing my first school uniform, before they changed in 5th grade. I bet mom took it right after I got home from school to find my brother so excited for Trick-or-Treating that he wore his Jaws costume all day. You could say I have no costume, or viewed another way you could say I'm dressed as the lead in "Tales of a Fourth Grade Skeptic."

Saturday, January 12, 2019

The President is a Russian Asset

TRUMP:....Look, Putin...

WALLACE: Wait, but...

TRUMP: ... from everything I see, has no respect for this person.

CLINTON: Well, that's because he'd rather have a puppet as president of the United States.

TRUMP: No puppet. No puppet.

CLINTON: And it's pretty clear...

TRUMP: You're the puppet!

CLINTON: It's pretty clear you won't admit...

TRUMP: No, you're the puppet.

CLINTON: ... that the Russians have engaged in cyberattacks against the United States of America, that you encouraged espionage against our people, that you are willing to spout the Putin line, sign up for his wish list, break up NATO, do whatever he wants to do, and that you continue to get help from him, because he has a very clear favorite in this race.

So I think that this is such an unprecedented situation. We've never had a foreign government trying to interfere in our election. We have 17 -- 17 intelligence agencies, civilian and military, who have all concluded that these espionage attacks, these cyberattacks, come from the highest levels of the Kremlin and they are designed to influence our election. I find that deeply disturbing.

WALLACE: Secretary Clinton...

CLINTON: And I think it's time you take a stand...

TRUMP: She has no idea whether it's Russia, China, or anybody else.

CLINTON: I am not quoting myself.

TRUMP: She has no idea.

CLINTON: I am quoting 17...

TRUMP: Hillary, you have no idea.

CLINTON: ... 17 intelligence -- do you doubt 17 military and civilian...

TRUMP: And our country has no idea.

CLINTON: ... agencies.

TRUMP: Yeah, I doubt it. I doubt it.

CLINTON: Well, he'd rather believe Vladimir Putin than the military and civilian intelligence professionals who are sworn to protect us. I find that just absolutely...

TRUMP: She doesn't like Putin because Putin has outsmarted her at every step of the way.

WALLACE: Mr. Trump...

TRUMP: Excuse me. Putin has outsmarted her in Syria.

WALLACE: Mr. Trump...

TRUMP: He's outsmarted her every step of the way.

WALLACE: I do get to ask some questions.

TRUMP: Yes, that's fine.

WALLACE: And I would like to ask you this direct question. The top national security officials of this country do believe that Russia has been behind these hacks. Even if you don't know for sure whether they are, do you condemn any interference by Russia in the American election?

TRUMP: By Russia or anybody else.

WALLACE: You condemn their interference?

TRUMP: Of course I condemn. Of course I -- I don't know Putin. I have no idea.

WALLACE: I'm not asking -- I'm asking do you condemn?

TRUMP: I never met Putin. This is not my best friend. But if the United States got along with Russia, wouldn't be so bad. ∎

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Gen X File #002: Kenneth!

Kenneth! gets a big exclamation point because WOW! It's been forever since we've been saying we'll get together. And we FINALLY GOT TOGETHER, so I'm super-stoked about it.

When I was in my 30s, an email landed in my inbox with the subject, if memory serves, reading "Blast from the Past...?" The sender's name certainly proved that:  here was an email from someone I hadn't seen since we were kids. Kenneth had found my blog, in those days penned under my rock name Lexi Kahn. Between my PR photo and context, Ken had deduced that the blogger was in fact me, Michelle DiPoala, the awkwardest of St. Margaret's School's classmates. Kenneth's note revealed that he, too, lived in the Boston area (wow!) and we vowed to set plans to meet for coffee at some point. But we did not meet for coffee at any point...not, that is, until today. Hey, it only took twelve or thirteen years to set the date. In a way, our spectacular procrastination made for perfect timing. Though I have no intention of publishing the Gen X Report in order of Interview Subjects, as it happens Ken is the perfect Gen X File #002, and he was game for the idea. That's what I like: buy-in. I only hope the next 51 people I call are equally down for this project.

As expected, this first interview of the Gen X Report was a solid conversation between old friends. During our talk, I messaged Colleen and Simone. Simone had a question about Ken's ascot, which is a story from third grade. You'll get to hear her question, and Ken's answer, when this webisode of The Gen X Report gets posted. [Date TBA] 

My Extemporaneous Notes

Today was rainy, so I was a bit wet after taking the #1 bus from Harvard to Central, and a quick but splashy walk from Central along Inman Street. Just as I reached the corner about to cross Hampshire to 1369 Coffee, I spotted Ken approaching on foot from the other direction. We waved, so then I didn't know where to look during the however-long-it-takes for the light to change. I'm so awkward in person, it's not even funny. "You got taller!" is of course the first thing I said. Could I be any more of a dork? You got taller, really?

But Ken laughed, and I remembered that he was called "friend" in grade school because he was one of the few who "got me." I was always such a weird little person, and had more bullies than friends. We were going to have coffee at 1369, but had a back-up plan ready in case it was too crowded and hot—it was. I used to love doing interviews at 1369 back in my Lexi Kahn days, and surely will again. But today it was packed, and because of the pouring rain, my glasses fogged up the minute we were inside the door. So we crossed to S&S, which was a godsend, because I was suddenly ravenous. I ate the whole hell outta a bowl of mac & cheese. Why is S&S so good, I love that place. Ken had a burger. It took over three hours to catch up on what's happened since 7th grade. It's been...a lot. My face hurt from laughing, and there were quiet moments as we talked about losing touch and losing  friends, the crazy blur that was our 20s, bouts with anxiety and depression, reaching the age where our parents are turning gray and slowing down. He lost his dad a few years ago. He got married and has two kids. We talked about how expensive it is to live and work in the Boston area. Ken went to school for a long time, he's got several degrees, and specializes in bioinformatics, microbiology, computational biology, database engineering and architecture, data wrangling, research informatics and software development.


The 1970s
St. Margaret's School
New Hampshire
Cub Scouts
Ascots and Ties
Youth Kickball
Youth Stickball
Youth Basketball
Italian moms

The Next Interview

The next Gen X File will be a more formal "interview." I make that distinction because, unlike #002, I don't know this next guy except to say hello to in a club. It is Rob Crean, a locally-famous stand-up comic who acts, sings and makes funny short video with other talented people around Boston and LA. I'm setting up a time with Rob right now. I haven't really told him about the Gen X Report, but he's down for an interview anyway. Stay tuned for profile & notes about Gen X File #003: Rob Crean. Here's a preview of Rob Crean via YouTube:

Comments are encouraged, and will become part of the Gen X Report. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

What is Content?

Content, Technically Speaking

By today's definition, content is any purposeful online communication, in any format, intended to reach people, convey your message, spark interest, or coax some kind of response from your audience, such as a click, a share, or a purchase. Content rules the lives of professionals at digital agencies and company marketing departments. These are tech-savvy creatives & creative data scientists. Marketers craft strategic campaigns aimed at one or more audience segments. To support a variety of digital campaigns, marketers generate and curate a massive amount of written and multimedia content (video, infographics, etc), which they deploy via websites and blogs, emails and texts, social sharing and more. It's actually pretty amazing.  


Currently Reading

Forged: Writing in the Name of God
it was amazing
tagged: currently-reading