Monday, November 21, 2005

Art Snob

I have used up the last of my airline miles to get us a couple tickets to Denver, CO. Julie's husband, Alan is having his very first art show! We will be flying up and getting there just in time to see his debut. We'll also be attending their holiday open house on Saturday before flying home on Sunday.

In addition to the chance to support Alan, which I am estatic that we can even do, I also get to see pretty much the whole family this weekend. My sister Jill lives just a couple blocks away. My brother and Emily are flying up early on Friday. And my Dad and Debbie are coming in Thursday as a surprise. (No one is suppose to know about that last part, so don't tell anyone.)

The siblings were all together last year for Christmas, but it seemed a bit rushed and some folks were sick, so it wasn't quite the joy we usually have when we get together. I'm really looking forward to this trip, when we should have at least a moment or two together.

Lastly, with a bit of luck, Kristi and I will also get to see Rich, Carrie, and the girls too.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

What I did last week...

Last weekend I closed down our retail store, Lone Star Games. We sold poker chips. Now we are selling our inventory in an effort to recoup our losses. I'll certainly be writing more about this over the coming weeks or months, but for now just know that we gave it a good shot. While we are sad the retail venture did not work out, we do not regret trying our hand in another venture. It was fun, if expensive, and we're glad we once again put our selves, our effort, and our $ on the line. Like many have said before, it only takes once.

Since closing the kiosk I have seen a bunch of movies. On Wednesday I skipped the poker game to go see Serenity, a good western set in space. The story was enjoyable, the acting good, the writing (by Josh Whedon) very good (I reckon the dialoge was a bit western-like), and the spaceship almost looked like a horse. Rating 3.75 of 5

On Thursday I did play poker and came in fourth of 11 players. It was not in the money, but I did well for my $10 investment.

On Friday Kristi took me to see the wonderful biopic, Walk the Line. Absolutely engrossing story about Johnny Cash and June Carter. Everyone will likely see this movie and that is just how it should be. Outstanding acting and screenplay, probably the best movie I've seen all year. Rating 5 of 5

Saturday was my birthday (39) and we were going to go out with Tony and Emily, Mom and Steve. Tony took sick in the morning, so I cancelled our reservation at the wonderful Fogo de Chao (fo-go dèe shoun). We'll reschedule for the next time they are in town. And if you have never eaten at a Brazilian churrasco, you really should. Rating 5 of 5

Instead, if was a calm and lazy day, where Kristi and I took in two movies to celebrate. The first was Just Like Heaven, a light hearted romantic comedy. It's my favorite genre and this was a pretty good rendition of the standard plotline; boy meets girl, boy and girl argue, boy and girl fall in love, boy and girl save each other, boy and girl lose each other, boy and girl end up kissing as the camera spins around them. Rating 4 of 5

After dinner we went back to the discount theatre for the R-rated comedy, Wedding Crashers. Most reviewers found it unsatisfying, but we really enjoyed. It was a bit raunchy, but laugh out loud funny too. Rating 4 of 5

And finally, today, we visited with my mother a bit (she gave me pumpkin bars for a present, a tasty treat I asked for ahead of time), went down to Cedar Hill where we saw Kristi's parents and relatives from Alabama, Rick, Sherri, and Matthew.

One of the funniest lines tonight was when Sherry said, "Tony never even updates his blog, I don't even know why he has one!" She was a bit upset by his disappointing writing schedule and I thought it very funny.

Now it's time to pack and go to bed. I've got to get on a plan in eight hours.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

To Fuss or Not to Fuss

I think about business problems all the time. Or at least I think in circles about business problems all the time. (There is a significant difference there, but that's for another post.)

And one of the things I don't think about anymore is "good enough." You see, in business, it is usually right to be "good enough" without being perfect. The arguement goes,
Become good enough, then introduce your product (service). Do *not* let the process stop, and keep improving your product, but don't wait until you're perfect or you will spend too much time on the little things that do not make a difference.
Some of you know this as the Pareto Principleor the 80/20 Rule, which largely states you should focus your energy where you get results rather than waste your energy where you don't.

All that being said, I am a firm believer in excellence, execution, doing things right, and maybe even karma (that's karma with a small-k, not Karma).

So it made me pause to read the recent post Do Fuss on the weblog of 37Signals.
Why? WHY? After all, “they” say …

“Don’t bother, it’s just a little thing!”

Well, if it’s just a little thing, then fixing it is just a small matter!

“It’s not worth the time, no one bothers with that.” (One of my favorites)

In that case, you must spend the time! Why … well … if no one else bothers with it, you probably just found your competitive edge!
And I completely agree with this too.

I suppose, deep down in my heart of hearts, I really want to be excellent in what I do. At least one thing that I do. And I believe, or I so want to believe, that being excellent, that fussing over the tiny details, that getting just a bit closer to perfection is not only worth it, but required. That doing my best in that thing will set me apart. Will prove I am unique. And will be rewarding.