We explore a variety of topics and issues of the day. Tell us what you think.

Parting Shot

May 20, 2022

I’ve been taking a tough, touching trip down memory lane. Here’s my parting shot of a by-the-Jersey-shore bungalow that will be forever etched in my psyche. Lots of love, laughter and boisterous family gatherings within the walls of this modest home in Marven Gardens, the yellow property of Monopoly board fame. Inside this brick home lived my foundation and last connection to my mother who left this world too early; my aunt and uncle who got married in 1952, live from New York, on the CBS-TV network show, “Bride and Groom.” These Atlantic City locals – beloved by family and everyone they met – celebrated 68 years of marriage in 2020 before my uncle died, may his memory be a blessing. 


In the Mirror

May 4, 2022

The phrase – “objects in mirror are closer than they appear” – is truer than you know. For me, this safety warning really hit home during a pre-pandemic encounter with two rhinos on a dirt road in South Africa. That day, we were exploring a national park when two black rhinos approached our compact rental car. We were in spitting distance. While my husband slowly steered our car around and away from the duo, I held my breath and snapped a photo. We got to observe these iconic members of Africa’s Big 5 without becoming a YouTube sensation. This week, I realized this safety warning – etched on passenger side mirrors – isn’t reserved for the drivers of motor vehicles; it applies to all of us.


Matzo Ball

April 16, 2022

For me, the perfect matzo ball represents perseverance. I was joking with a client this week that I have to allow myself extra time to create this traditional Passover dish. Without fail, I make two batches. One to toss and one to serve during the Seder. It’s a humbling ritual for a recovering perfectionist. In recent years, it’s become rather cathartic to dump these dumplings down the drain. I chuckle (or curse) before mixing the next batch of matzo meal, fat, eggs and spices that need to be lightly formed into balls and placed carefully in a salted, boiling pot of water. When you think about it, cooking and communications have a lot in common.


Plunge Ahead

April 2, 2022

At first, I was getting cold feet about forging a cold stream last weekend. We had two choices when we saw submerged steppingstones on the trail; backtrack or plunge ahead. My hands were already cold since I just lost a glove to a photo opportunity. I had set down my gloves on a rock upstream. A gust of wind had carried one off and plopped it into the rushing waters. Now, we were downstream and my hiking partners wanted to go forward, not backward. I weighed the options and decided to cross those icy waters. Smartwool® socks and warm hiking boots made all the difference as we continued along the trail. Looking back on that experience, I realize a cold stream symbolizes the choices we make about communications.


Who’s Watching?

March 21, 2022

No one escapes scrutiny in a continuously connected world. Everyone seems to be watching brands and then holding them accountable for what they say and do. Look at the growing list of Western companies who have pledged to stop doing business in Russia because of pressure from customers and investors. Brands like Koch Industries can’t afford to sit on the sidelines. No matter how much I love the toilet paper and napkins made by their wholly-owned subsidiary, Georgia-Pacific, I plan to boycott Koch Industries because they “profit off Putin’s regime.” I am not alone in expecting brands to do the right thing. In fact, “it is becoming harder for boardrooms to see things in shades of gray.”


Against All Odds

March 3, 2022

A bronze sculpture – hidden in a corner of the High Museum of Art – speaks to me. I believe the Large Boxing Hare on Anvil by Barry Flanagan – silhouetted against a backdrop of modern buildings – represents the resistance of the people of Ukraine against the Russian invasion. Like the hare perched on the anvil, Ukrainians are demonstrating the heroism and bravery it takes to protect their way of life and the freedom that too many of us take for granted. We must remain united in exerting world pressure that discourages a Russian despot from unleashing more fatal blows from his “hammer.”


Build It

February 15, 2022

Do you remember when Kevin Costner hears a voice whispering, “if you build it, he will come?” In the film, “Field of Dreams,” it refers to building a baseball diamond in an Iowa cornfield. In my own backyard, it refers to a wooden box we made for nesting owls. In your case, it could be the website you are developing. Like the protagonist in the 1989 film, we hope if we build it, they will come. Costner’s character created a baseball diamond that attracted the ghosts of Shoeless Joe Jackson and seven other Chicago White Sox players. My family’s nest box has attracted a few fine-feathered friends. How do we know this? Because of the split branch at the entrance hole and the hooting that pierces the night and wee hours of the morning.


Finding Your Voice

February 1, 2022

When everyone is talking, how can you be heard? By being more like the penguin. While it may sound like these flightless birds are just squawking, their vocalizations are quite different and recognized by their mates, chicks and competitors. Penguin “banter” even continues during deep sea dives, according to researchers in South Africa who recorded “200 distinct underwater vocalizations.” Effective communications is essential for these expressive birds to survive and advance their species, according to the Penguin Blog. Likewise, finding and using your own distinctive voice with your key audiences and constituencies can help your organization survive and thrive.