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Proving That Life is Stranger Than Fiction in the Communications Sphere

  You can’t make this stuff up. Raking through my storytelling and PR posts, I’ve curated a list of seven “life is stranger than fiction” moments. 1. Media Squeeze — and Watermelon Explosion — Described by the NY Times Presents an Opportunity for PR BuzzFeed proved what everyone has always believed in theory. If you stretch …more

PR Guy Morphs into Travel Writer

I thought the newspaper was asking me questions about my favorite travel destination. It turned out that the newspaper assumed San Francisco was my favorite travel destination — hey, why else would I live 53 miles south of San Francisco? — so my answers around Aix en Provence didn’t fit. As public service for those …more

Is $4 Toast and the Tech Industry Still Ruining San Francisco?

Yesterday marked the three-year anniversary since VentureBeat and Jolie O’Dell’s focus group of one correlated expensive toast to the decline of San Francisco. The O’Dell discourse came with jagged edges, damning the tech industry for a cycle that goes something like this: Someone creates a business for consumers with too much money and pretensions of …more

Irish Fans Bring Contrarian Storytelling to the Euro Cup

Playing a quick game of word association with European soccer fans conjures words like hooligans, violence and racism. When my family lived in the UK, my youngest son and I took in a match between West Ham and Liverpool at storied Anfield.The section for the West Ham supporters was literally wired off with police on …more

Amusing Answers in College FAQs for Graduation Ceremonies

College graduation ceremonies aren’t exactly the most entertaining affairs. By design. A speaker will make a case to “follow your passion” followed by a glorified roll call that, depending on the size of the school, can literally last hours. Still, to lower the probability of something going awry, schools provide an FAQ. While these documents …more

10 Charts from the Silicon Valley Index that Caught My Attention

Joint Venture Silicon Valley is incredibly thorough in putting together its annual index on Silicon Valley. Perhaps too thorough. Reviewing the 100-page document might be best described as a trudge. To save you the time of plodding through the pages, here are the CliffsNotes.   Where Invention Happens The combined patents generated in Silicon Valley …more

49 Days in Provence, Terminé

We’ve completed the “assignment” in the South of France. The last grains of sand have found their way through the hourglass. The experience has been better than what Heather and I expected. And we had high expectations. Reflecting on the professional side — and putting to rest talk of a boondoggle — so many things …more

The One Hack Rarely Discussed to Increase Productivity at Meetings

Let me say up front that this post does not address the age-old quandary: “To meet or not to meet, that is the question.” Moving from Hamlet to Ford trucks, the company meeting is “built to last.” To resist is futile. Still, there is one simple action that would advance civilization in its quest to …more

49 Days in Provence

No, Peter Mayle hasn’t written an abbreviated sequel. But I am feeling the pressure to write a post that’s “stylish, witty and delightfully readable.” How about “simply readable?” Anyway, the tweaked book title portends a looming personal adventure. My wife, Heather, and I head to Aix en Provence today for a seven-week assignment.If the word …more