Mustard is one of those foods that people tend to have strong opinions about. Just ask Malcolm Gladwell who wrote The Ketchup Conundrum in the September 6, 2004 issue of The New Yorker. In the article, Gladwell notes that while ketchup has basically stayed the same through the years, mustard has undergone a revolution of sorts and evolved into the most segmented condiment on the market.
Grocery store shelves offer dozens of varieties including yellow, dijon, spicy brown, whole grain, English, honey, hot, and the very popular stone ground, which is mustard produced by grounding mustard seeds with a stone mill, and adding other ingredients to make a coarse or smooth textured condiment. Read more
But once in the world, she learned everyone’s lesson – families were not as they seemed, she grew artful in spotting the cracks in domestic facades. Wasn’t everyone damaged….
For many years, a book – The Widow’s Children – sat on a shelf in my bookcase untouched because I had read that the author – Paula Fox – tended toward the somber although many critics consider Fox one of the greatest writers of the 20th century. Most of Fox’s works were published in the 1960’s, 70’s, and 80’s, so many of her books are out of print which means Fox is not as well-known as she was 30 years ago. Read more
A lot of my process is informed by the notion that two mildly good stories put together sometimes equal one really good story.
What the Dog Saw and Other Adventures by Malcolm Gladwell was published in 2009, although the 19 non-fiction essays included in the book were originally published in The New Yorker magazine where the author has been a staff writer since 1996.
Divided into three parts with three themes: obsessives, theories (ways of organizing experience), and the predictions we make about people, What the Dog Saw and Other Adventures is one of the most interesting contemporary collections of stories that anyone over the age of 40 can relate to without having to refer to Wikipedia for an explanation of events, characters, products, and businesses. Read more
Ranking schools – high schools, colleges, business and law schools – is big business these days. US News & World Report, Newsweek, Business Week and countless other national and regional magazines and newspapers rank our schools annually. Schools seem to be obsessed with their respective rankings proudly displaying them on their websites and in press releases. But, if the public dug deeper and understood how the rankings are computed, these publications would not be considered gospel. Read more