The beginning of this book is amazing. Learning about Wheeler and Dilly is just great storytelling. However, half way through the book starts to get aThe beginning of this book is amazing. Learning about Wheeler and Dilly is just great storytelling. However, half way through the book starts to get a bit out there and, some might say, ridiculous. It never gets off the rails but it wobbles. The first part i give a 5 out of 5 and the second half a 3 out of 5. ...more
THis book is really great. One of the best books i've read in a long time. It's not that long but is still a great story of friends, war and a box ofTHis book is really great. One of the best books i've read in a long time. It's not that long but is still a great story of friends, war and a box of eggs. Read it...more
My first Harlan Coben book and it didn't disappoint. It's a compelling mystery between a few families in New Jersey. One suspected pedophile, one goodMy first Harlan Coben book and it didn't disappoint. It's a compelling mystery between a few families in New Jersey. One suspected pedophile, one good high school senior, and a single mom reporter all come together to make a great book for plane reading...more
Really interesting story. If you're going to Florence, definitely read this book before going as it gives you a good bit of history without being boriReally interesting story. If you're going to Florence, definitely read this book before going as it gives you a good bit of history without being boring. ...more
A good primer on how VC's work with some good anecdotes about companies and their interactions with VC's and other investors. If you're in a startup fA good primer on how VC's work with some good anecdotes about companies and their interactions with VC's and other investors. If you're in a startup for the first time, it's definitely worth a read to just got the basics down. ...more
Really good book. Not as good as Another Bullshit Night in Suck City but still very well written. It wonders too much sometimes but some of the passagReally good book. Not as good as Another Bullshit Night in Suck City but still very well written. It wonders too much sometimes but some of the passages are just awesome...more
I found this to be a great read - i'd give it 4.5 out of 5. Sure it's not deep and heavy work of literature but I found it really interesting to hearI found this to be a great read - i'd give it 4.5 out of 5. Sure it's not deep and heavy work of literature but I found it really interesting to hear about his life and emotional path. Agassi was such a talented player who was thought of as a choke artist for such a long time until he got his mind straight. I like that he really goes into each match and tourney and discusses why he tanked or what he was thinking.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who likes tennis or Agassi. ...more
I just finished reading Chuck Klosterman’s latest book, Eating the Dinosaur and i didn’t like it. Before i get into why i didn’t like it, i do want toI just finished reading Chuck Klosterman’s latest book, Eating the Dinosaur and i didn’t like it. Before i get into why i didn’t like it, i do want to say that i thought his essays about Kurt Cobain (Oh, the Guilt) and Garth Brooks (The Passion of Garth) to be really interesting. Also, the Time Machine and Abba essays were okay. I then had somewhat of a problem with the rest. I have 4 main reasons.
The first and main reason i didn’t like the book is this: Chuck writes about what he’s interested in. His past books were about Rock N Roll, Reality TV, Billy Joel, Dixie Chicks and other things. They had an interesting take on items i liked and were very familiar with. These essays expanded my thinking on these topics. For example, i had never realized that the Dixie Chicks were that similar to 80’s Van Halen, nor had i thought about how Billy Joels was a unique kind of cool different than almost all other rock stars (on a coolness range from white to black, he’s an orange). Also, past essays celebrated both the subjects and the concepts. The current essays are about philosophical views on the world. He asks questions and makes statements about society such as,
* Why we like or hate people who fail * Why we interact with popular advertising in the manner we do * Why Chuck hates laugh tracks in TV shows and america’s approach to humor * Why NFL Football is great * Why watching people (voyeurism) is exciting: (because there’s a possibility for anything to happen)
These are the topics of this book and they are just nowhere close to as interesting as his previous topics. His book of interviews, IV, had a great interview with Val Kilmer. Nothing here touches that.
Reason number 2 for not liking this book is that there are lots of quotes in the book. For some reason my Kindle never shows who says these quotes. That makes them WAY less interesting and just frustrating. Don’t read this book on a kindle.
My third reason is that I didn’t like the prose. I think i know why this is. I’ve tracked down Kloserman on podcasts and now seen him speak twice. I know what he sounds like in person. So much so that i now hear his voice talking when i read his text. Do you know when you notice someone is saying the word “like” too much and all of the sudden you find yourself pay attention to them actually say the work “like” over and over instead of whatever it is they are trying to say? Well, this happens with me and Chuck. He uses the words “idiom’ and italicizes his word “must” and i can hear his emphasis. It bothers me. Maybe i’ve just read too much of his stuff.
Finally, the last essay in the book is about his dislike of technology and I completely disagree with his opinion regarding the Internet. He has a part in the book where he criticizes anyone who publicly praises the internet because he argues they only like it because it now makes them relevant. He says,”the only people who insist the internet is wonderful are those who need it to give the life meaning.” I can’t begin to say how wrong that stance is.
At the end, Klosterman comes off as a guy who is just bitter that the world is changing. He reminds me of people who refuse to watch television, won’t own cell phones and only listen to music on vinyl. Grow up....more
Really enjoyed this book. Had no idea about the details surrounding The Revolutionary War. It's also interesting to hear about George Washington. EvenReally enjoyed this book. Had no idea about the details surrounding The Revolutionary War. It's also interesting to hear about George Washington. Even though everyone pretty much considers him to be the bomb now, i had no idea that he had no idea what he was doing and almost f'd it all up.
Just finished reading the book In-N-Out Burger by Stacy Perlman about the creation of the iconic burger joint. The book has some great stories about tJust finished reading the book In-N-Out Burger by Stacy Perlman about the creation of the iconic burger joint. The book has some great stories about the original founders. The husband/wife team Ester and Harry Snyder worked tirelessly and with lots of integrity to create a burger joint focused on "doing one thing an doing it better than anyone else"
The book begins when they founded the company in 1950 and the depiction of that time in LA was really interesting to learn about. The automobile was just coming on the scene and fast food restaurants were just starting. LA was a hotbed for them. In-N-Out, McDonald's, Carls Jr, Taco Bell an others all started around the same time in the LA area. Los Angeles at that time was the Silicon Valley of fast food in the 50's There was a hype and boom around it and it was making many food entrepreneurs millionaires.
From the beginning In-N-Out wanted to be a place that was family owned and run. Harry and Ester continually turned away offers to sell, expand quickly or even change the scope of the business. Whether it was stubbornness or not, staying small and focused was Harry's belief and it helped shape a truly unique restaurant that has - relative to other burger joints - healthier, better tasting burgers and a friendlier and cleaner environment all at a low price.
The book is also very much a out the Synder family - the dad, mom, 2 brothers, and granddaughter. Over 60 years of operation each one of these family members eventually ran the entire company. Harry was the main entrepreneur who built the core. When he died, he gave it to his youngest son who was equally talented and capable and built it up to be most like what it is today. When he died, the oldest son stepped in. He struggled with drug use and 6 years after taking over died from drug complications. After that, Harry's wife, Ester, at age 82 took over again until her granddaughter was able to assume control.
The beginning is a great tale of growth and success, the middle is an interesting story of politics and growing pains, and the end is sort of tragic as the youngest Snyder (Lyndsi) is far from the dynamic inspiration of Harry nor nearly as competent.
I happy to have read the book and learn about In-N-Out's secret sauce. If Harry, Ester or his son rich were still running the show I would bend I've backwards to eat there. But knowing that the company is now in somewhat incompetent and undeserving hands makes me believe that it's only a matter of time before they chain tries to overexpand, maximize profits and become more of the same rather that a unique place with a special culture. Sure hope that doesn't happen too soon
Some interesting facts:
* In the 1950's car hops were all the craze. In 1949 Harry built a two-way speaker system that allowed people to order their burger on the way in and pick it up on their way out in a fast, streamlined process. While Wendy's claimed to have invented the drive-thru in 1973, In-N-Out used it right off the bat for over 20 years prior to that * The entire chain lived by Harry's quote: "Keep it simple, do one thing and do it the best you can" * Harry felt he had to own the entire process on how to make beef patties and deliver to stores on daily basis. What you won't see in an In-N-Out are: freezers, infrared lights. or microwaves * There's a secret menu: the term, "animal style" came from the 60's when the surfing community ordered the burgers with special sause. The other customers who wanted the sause started calling it "animal style" as they viewed the surfers as animals. Protein style. Lots think it came with the atlkins craze. But it came in the 70's when the founder (harry) started eating burgers without the bun to try to lose weight. * Harry always paid his employees way over minimum wage. In 1950, min wage was 60 cents and he started everyone at $1 * Harry and Ester didn't want to expand to more stores but their employees wanted more shifts. Harry finally agreed to expand if he could staff an entire store with current employees and pay for it all in cash * Every store opened is completely paid for - there is no debt * LA is the birth place of fast-food and burgers. Right by Baldwin Park in San Bernardino Valley, McDonalds opened it's first store in 1948. Similarly, Carl's Jr started in 1945 and Fatburger in 1952 in LA * Ray Kroc, who is credited for building the McDonald's empire actually approached 4 other chains before the McDonald's founders decided to sell exclusive franchise rights to him. In-N-Out was one of the 4. Harry declined almost immediately. At that time, many people were getting quite rich by starting fast food chains and franchising them. Harry felt lots of pressure to do the same. You can imagine how every one in your industry is doing something one way and you feel like doing the completely opposite. While he could have definitely made more money franchising, he has created a cult and beloved brand by doing the opposite....more