Entrepreneur, Explorer, Angel.

Sometimes all at Once.

15TH August 2021

Culture - Entrepreneur - Family and Friends - Geopolitical - Legends and tales - Uncategorized

Five Fantastic Qualities of Russell Kagan

A dear friend and confident passed awhile back named Russell Kagan. I always favored calling him Russ, but one walk down the Croissette in Cannes changed all that as people on every block yelled his name, in every accent known to man… “KAGAN!” It was 1998 and the dot.com boom was in full swing. Media properties began to realize content could go multiple places…. and be sold multiple times. This was manna for Russ, a consummate deal maker/salesman in TV distribution throughout Europe and Asia. Of course everyone flocked to the south of France twice a year to shop for media content and enjoy the lifestyle, but Russ was already there waiting. And that’s where the true magic of Russ’ investment in mankind payed off. He was Kind. Russ didn’t seem to […]

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24TH January 2021

Creative problem Solving - Family and Friends - Legends and tales - Timeless - Uncategorized

The greatest risk is taking no risk at all.

You can ski in any number of safe trails to the bottom. So why would anyone choose to ski down on the difficult black diamond run instead? Most passionate skiers would ask the question differently: why wouldn’t you? The point of skiing isn’t to get to the bottom. The point is how it feels on your way there. I grew up scaring myself half to death, and was a VIP at my local ER. And this despite my upbringing which basically discouraged medical treatment and put prayer as the first choice in healing. We had nothing against doctors, mind you. We just thought that 80% of our so called “medical issues” were mostly in our heads, included the risk and the fear that came with it. In retrospect, perhaps I […]

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23TH January 2021

Adventure - Creative problem Solving - Family and Friends - Uncategorized

Remember Travel

It’s been a year now. After years and years of miles and miles (pun intended), I’ve spent twelve months pretty much staying put. It wasn’t that bad at all. Because the common thread, at least to me, was curiosity. And curiosity, properly applied, is just as powerful at home as it is halfway across the world.  Like most people, I travelled for business, and for pleasure. Often a little of both. But what I liked when I travelled was being out of the comfort zone. Different food. Different languages. Different traffic laws. Funny accents. Different ideas of personal space. Different views of history and current events. It was the ability to adapt, or utter failure to do so, that I found exciting. How to sit on the floor and eat […]

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27TH December 2020

Adventure - Family and Friends - Friends - Timeless - Uncategorized

Adieu 2020

Egyptians wrote about passing, as if someone got off the Nile and passed into the reeds. The Nile was life. Anything afield was not. They lived within a mile of the water, and what was beyond the reeds remained a mystery to most. The Romans called it alleysium, as in Gladiator before battle “if you find yourself alone, riding in green fields, with the sun on your face, do not be troubled, for you are in Alysium, and already dead”. Even in a movie, chilling words. Homer referred to it as the Elysian plain…where life is easiest for men. No snow is there, nor heavy storm, nor ever rain, but ever does Ocean send up blasts of the shrill-blowing West Wind that they may give cooling to men. If death […]

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17TH September 2020

Family and Friends - Friends - Good Story - Legends and tales - Timeless

Five Fantastic Qualities of Mark Von Kreuter

My eulogy for a friend, Mark von Kreuter

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23TH April 2020

Creative problem Solving - Entrepreneur - Family and Friends - Mobile - Parenting - Timely - Uncategorized

Hair, in the time of Corona.

We didn’t have a cure for Corona. But it sure had a cure for us. It’s like we were all swimming nicely in warm waters… when suddenly the tide went out, and all of humanity’s stark realities were there on display for most anyone to see. Startling. Hair; We like it more than we knew I probably didn’t think much about hair before Corona. My Dad and Grandfather passed a full head on to me, though Vitalis is no longer on the grooming essentials list. On a regular basis- monthly I’d say- most of us had some version of this routine (for men- women please add steps as you see fit). Call ahead to salon (or spa, or barber, whichever), to see how busy they are. Maybe book a time […]

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25TH July 2019

Family and Friends - Good Story - Legends and tales - Timeless - Uncategorized

Squaring the Curve – A Quality Life Right Through the Finish…

My father sold life insurance. Actually, people said they bought life insurance from Big Art. He didn’t so much sell it. He did this by asking questions and listening empathetically. How old are you today? Where do you work? Tell me about your family. Does your spouse work? How many kids? Where are they in school. What sports do they play? Do you play with them? What other activities interest you? How much does it cost you to live here? What do you want to be doing later in life? Do you want to retire someday? Where and how? What do you really love about life? And so on and so on. He insisted on doing it at the kitchen table, with life going on all around. That was the […]

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30TH April 2019

Angel Investor - Business Tricks - Family and Friends - Geopolitical - Good Story - Incubator - Legends and tales - Social - Timeless

The Black Tulip…springtime flowers, trends & bubbles. Yeah!

Tulip futures, anyone? It’s tulip season around here; The New York Times had a wonderful story today on Rembrandt and dutch tulips. They’re pretty, but I love them for more than their looks… A very special person to me loves tulips. I do too, and I also love them as a reminder of bubbles- financial ones. Tulips are the first great bubble in modern recorded history, as detailed in the wonderful book called Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds. It’s an early study of crowd psychology by Scottish journalist Charles Mackay, first published in 1841. It’s still in print, and cited by financial wizards from Bernard Baruch to Michael Lewis. Tulips had quite a run in in the 17th century. As the flowers grew in popularity, professional growers paid […]

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18TH April 2019

Angel Investor - Business Tricks - Family and Friends - Timeless - Uncategorized

Busy could, sometimes, just be BS

We’ve been talking an awful lot about work norms. Goldman Sachs no longer requires suits. IBM allows flex time. MasterCard permits video attendance at weekly touch base calls. This is all terribly progressive, and probably helps with attracting, retaining, and motivating A Players. But one thing remains a fallacy; the common safe place called “being busy”. Maybe it’s the old puritan work ethic. Maybe it’s from back in the days when people- most- billed by the hour. Those warriors who worked on weekends. Brought files along on vacations. Always had a conference call, or a reason to burn the midnight oil. How impressive. What a workhorse. Such a team player. An animal. We gave you a pass because you were full on, all day. Frantically moving from one thing to […]

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28TH March 2019

Entrepreneur - Family and Friends - Geopolitical - Incubator - Leadership - Timeless

Passion can be Painful

I wonder if founders appreciate that the origin of the word “passion” . It’s the Latin word for “suffer.” I didn’t know that until recently, on a Founder touch base call, where a very passionate argument was made and didn’t land. [It makes perfect sense; passion requires a commitment so pure that mere suffering would not deter i]t. I hear about- and see- Founders everyday that are bursting with passion about their product, the problem it solves, and the business they are building around it. Problem is, many forget the suffering that comes with it. So here are a few of the pain points each founder must learn to stomach; Suffer the humility of defeat; by this, I mean the realization that it is time to quit pressing the idea as […]

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