Category: Humor

The Ultimate Late Night Office Playlist

If you aren’t staying at your office past midnight at least once in a while, are you really working at a startup? I’ve written plenty before about my love of my late-night work sessions. When the office is empty, I get into my flow state, and nothing can stop me from getting things done. Having […]

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The 10 Startup Rites of Passage

“The best start-ups might be considered slightly less extreme kinds of cults.” – Peter Thiel  Every year, hundreds of thousands of people in the United States join small, unvetted mysterious organizations that require extreme lifestyles and promise untold riches. Are there new cults sweeping the nation? Are people joining boy bands? Nope. They’re joining high-growth startups. When you really think […]

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In Praise of Vests

Vests are the quiet heroes of the male wardrobe. Shoes and jackets may get all the attention, but a good vest goes a long way toward style and functionality for men. Functionally? Vests keep your torso warm while freeing your arms for easy action. This makes vests perfect for moderately cold climates (like fall in most […]

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Misadventures in Curing the Common Cold

It all started with a flu shot (I think). The symptoms of a cold come slowly, like a shark slowly circling. First comes drainage. Then comes nasal congestion. Then come watery eyes. Then comes coughing and sneezing. When cold-like symptoms come around, I get excited. “I never get sick,” I tell myself. “I’m going to […]

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Fire Drills as Social Occasions

Modern life has a lot of quirks. One of those quirks is the fire drill. The fire drill is a uniquely 20th century thing, made for 20th century and 21st century buildings. And if you think about it, it’s really strange. A bell goes off and all at once dozens and even hundreds of human beings […]

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A Case for Grown-Up Summer Jobs

Water navigation. Entertaining tourists. Playing DJ. Pulling people around on inflatable tubes. Captaining a tour boat on the lake seems like the best job. Or at least, so I thought as I watched a young Lake Lanier dock hand at work today. Lots of us have fond memories of the days when we spent the hot summer […]

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The Adventure of Phonelessness

Have you ever been doing your best to do door to door selling in a small, strange Florida beach town when your smartphone dies on you? I have.* There are few things more stressful – and I really needed to get to a meeting at some beachfront restaurant. And yet I remember that time fondly.  From […]

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My Midtownish Things: With Apologies to “My Favorite Things”

With apologies to Rodgers and Hammerstein , you can now imagine Julie Andrews* singing about everyone’s favorite part of Atlanta, in all of its silliness and excess and beauty. Yuppies on scooters  And gentrification King of Pops snacking and revitalization Dog parks and hip bars and dancing that swings These are a few of my Midtownish […]

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10 Things I Look For In a New Home or Apartment

I’m told it’s important to set realistic expectations for any kind of search of places to rent, so I’ve written down some of my modest goals: 1. Defensibility – Must have arrow slits, good battlements, and plenty of places from which boiling oil can be poured upon attacking enemies. Willing to pay extra for a moat. 2. Secret hiding […]

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My Sunday Run: A Greek Tragedy

In the days of summer in the great city of Atlanta, the goddess Athena favored a youth named James and gifted him with the ability to finish a 5K without looking like a damn fool. James raced in the great 5K games of the Atlanta Beltline, winning minor glory as the 443rd person to finish the race. James was emboldened by […]

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3 Reasons 2018’s Real Song of the Summer is Alan Jackson’s “Chattahoochee”

One of the real pleasures of summertime is stumbling upon that one big hit that everyone you know starts blasting, that every radio station plays, and that seems to be the soundtrack for every fun summer event. Remember “Call Me Maybe”? Of course you do. If there’s anything like it for 2018, I haven’t heard […]

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The Tragedy and Beauty of Lines at the Post Office

The post office line is one of the dreariest places to be on a Monday afternoon. I have never been in a packed room that silent, except perhaps for a funeral. At least at funerals, people occasionally laugh. This is the perfect place to notice things, especially because there are few other entertainment options in […]

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The Salesperson’s Workout Routine

(This is not a serious post. A colleague of mine in sales complained about the difficulty of opening our office door today, so I informed him my new workout routine for salespeople would become the subject of today’s blog. He’s a good sport 😉 ) Suffering from the lethargy and poor fitness of the modern […]

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Accountability GIFs – or “GIFcountability”

I’m a simple man. When I need accountability, I turn to Graphics Interchange Format files. My friends and I have a running group chat in Facebook’s Workplace app. We use it mainly to coordinate our weekly mastermind accountability meetings, where we discuss our goals and failings and successes. Increasingly, that chat has become a way for us all […]

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Facebook’s Weak, Passive, Dishonest* RSVP Button

“But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.” – Jesus (NKJV) At last. I have been sitting on my outrage for months, and now it’s finally time to let it out. Facebook Events RSVP button, I have a bone to pick with you. Can’t […]

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7 Reasons I Can’t Wait To Be an Old Man

I’ve got some 50 years to train for being the best old man ever. They say you should visualize your success, so here are seven things I’m looking forward to about senior citizen status. 1. I will finally be able to say things like “I’m too old for this s***.” Granted, I’m still going to be doing the […]

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We Need An Automated Bot for Worthless Online Debates

Human beings have the precious, irreplaceable gifts of life, consciousness, rationality, and creativity. We are ungrateful little bastards, too. We have gotten very good at wasting our best gifts on petty social media debates about whether Donald Trump is Hitler, whether Bruno Mars is a cultural appropriator, whether Star Wars: The Last Jedi was a good movie, […]

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Snow vs. Bureaucracy

I live in the bright, sunny South, so when the skies dump snow on us, it’s kind a big deal. Children (and adults) build snowmen, cityscapes become more beautiful, and people slow down. But what I love most is snow’s way of putting a wrench into bureaucracy. State and local governments in the South are particularly skittish around […]

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A Running List of Fun Table Discussion Topic Ideas for Your Next Party

If you want topics that spark great, deep, hilarious conversations with friends, you could be like everybody else and buy the game Table Topics for $40 on Amazon. But you aren’t like everyone else. You’re lean, mean, and frugal. You’re creative AF. You don’t need some fancy pants box of colored cardboard to tell you […]

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I’m Beginning to Wonder Whether “Stay Hungry” Is Good Advice for Entrepreneurs

This is a guest post by Over-the-Top Startup Bro, James’s professional alter ego.  “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” – Whole Earth Catalog motto, also Steve Jobs’ Stanford grad address Like most startup founders who moved out to the Val (Silicon Valley, that is), I used to watch Steve Jobs’ Stanford commencement address every morning while I brewed my […]

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An Open Letter to that Little Punk Kid Who Wants a Hippopotamus for Christmas

Dear little girl who wants a hippo for Christmas, You ignorant little twat. You do realize that hippos are some of the world’s most dangerous animals, right? Did your parents drop you a lot when you were little? I don’t have any other explanation for why you would want as a pet the animal that kills […]

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Why I Don’t Trust the Popular Kids

This is half tongue-in-cheek. If you were popular in school, I don’t distrust you – entirely. I don’t entirely trust the popular kids. Sure, when you’re in school, the popular kids are shiny and glamorous and interesting. You only want to be around them, to be accepted by them, to be one of them. They’re socially […]

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No One Cares About You, Yellow Lights

Let’s be honest, yellow lights: no one really cares about you. If an alien came to our planet and observed you, he would think your yellow light meant “DRIVE FASTER! CROSS THAT INTERSECTION NOW! SCREW PEDESTRIANS!” You’re like the mom of ten year-old boys on a snow day: MOTHER: “Now boys, I want you to wrap up extra […]

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Marketers, Here Are 7 Ways To Take Your Direct Mail To the Next Level

Marketers, we all know direct mail is dying. Open rates are falling, conversion is falling, and eyeballs are moving away from our 10% off coupons to Bed, Bath, and Beyond. This might discourage other professions. But we’re marketers. When a medium is dying, we don’t throw in the towel. Here are ten hacks for getting 100% open rates on […]

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The Devil’s Dictionary for Business: “Corporate”

In 1881, American writer Ambrose Bierce began work on a series of short satirical definitions eventually published together as The Devil’s Dictionary. If you’ve never read the entries, you’re in for a sarcastic, cynical treat. See how he defined “dictionary.” DICTIONARY, n. A malevolent literary device for cramping the growth of a language and making […]

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