Humor

The discovery of our heritage provided a huge surprise that I should have seen coming.

Editorial Rights purchased from Akinfiev Sergey via iStock Photos

My girlfriend and I have often talked about having kids. It’s fun to speculate: What they’d look like, if they’d get her smarts, my sense of humor.

Coincidentally, my family bought us a DNA test last Christmas. It was a mildly awkward present to receive. It wasn’t like we lived in Alabama and “needed to be sure”. But we didn’t think anything more of it. It would be a fun exercise, to find out what we are and if we have healthy ancestors. We both swabbed the inside of our mouth and sent it off for analysis. …


The story of Rory McInnes and his prank that lived longer than anyone expected.

Editorial Rights purchased via Adobe Stock photos.

I’ll be 38 soon and am convinced I may never fully grow up. Yes, I have a job, pay bills, and do other adult things. But I’m still a child.

As much as I’d like to blame my mother, who has a frat-boydian sense of humor, I take full responsibility. If you make a random fart noise, I might laugh. I still substitute other curse words that rhyme for business names I hate.

I fear that even on my death bed, I shall be merciless to laugh at the same things my 5-year-old self would.

A teenager in Britain may…


History

The story of Franceska Mann and her fight until the bitter end.

Ballerina flying through the air.
Ballerina flying through the air.
Editorial Rights purchased via Adobe Stock PHotos

Never mistake the origins of World War II for anything other than Adolph Hitler’s drive for a master race.

When you strip away everything else that happened, the violence, the alliances formed through opportunism, the endless cruelty, you’ll see only malice. Hitler leveraged people’s insecurities, economic woes, and political chaos to align massive resources for his twisted vision.

The events have a profound impact on my own family. After reports of violence against Jews trickled into the US via The New Republic, my own grandfather dropped out of med school to fight in the war. Nobody suffered as the Jewish…


Life Lessons

Avoid unknowingly committing a faux pas by avoiding these simple mistakes.

Man with empty sign.
Man with empty sign.
Editorial Rights purchased via Adobe Stock Photos

If you served wine in ancient Greece without diluting it 3:1 with water, you’d be considered a rude host. In modern Russia, giving a dozen flowers to a woman is considered ill-mannered. Odd-numbered flowers are for happy occasions and even numbers for condolences.

When we change context, good manners easily tilt and slide sideways without us knowing. We become the headache. Conversely, some rules and customs seem obvious by way of logic. They shouldn’t need to be said or written down on signs. …


Designing the ultimate bad boss from the most common offenders.

Editorial Rights purchased via Adobe Stock Photos

A full 2/3 of people report have had or recently had a bad manager.

What’s even more fascinating: very few bad bosses know they are bad bosses. They just march along, like a blindfolded Godzilla kicking stuff over, sending quality employees running for the hills.

Why are there so many bad bosses? It’s simple. They became bosses by being high performers at previous positions, which are often very different than being a manager. You can be a fantastic programmer, but terrible at leading a team of programmers.

If I were to design the ultimate bad boss, he’d be an amalgamation…


Fiction | Humor | Satire

My trip to my insurance office revealed something I hadn’t thought of before.

Couple meeting with a a sales agent.
Couple meeting with a a sales agent.
Editorial Rights Purchased via Adobe Stock Photos

I noticed my auto insurance company was charging me $450 a month. It seemed like a lot, given I drive a 1995 Honda Accord with 1.3 million miles on it. The car looks like it sat at the bottom of the Red Sea for 200 years.

I called my rep and he assured me I was getting a “family discount” and I didn’t want to lose that. Yet, I have no family to speak of, nor baby mamas, nor brothers from other mothers.

His ostensibly kind gesture rang a bit hollow. I’d never been in a car wreck or had…


Marketing | Sports Sponsorships

The story of Suzy Favor Hamilton and the implosion of her sponsorships

Attractive woman staring seductively while holding a glass of wine.
Attractive woman staring seductively while holding a glass of wine.
Editorial Rights purchased via Adobe Stock Photos

Suzy Favor Hamilton was getting into constant fights with her husband. She’d developed a strange attachment to her daughter, refusing to put her down. She was acting irrational and was prone to huge mood swings and fits of anger.

Her husband thought it might be postpartum depression and urged her to get help. She eventually did and was put on anti-depressants. This seemingly therapeutic decision would be the harbinger of great chaos in her life. And would eventually cost her all of her sponsorships.

How Things Escalated and Then Exploded

Like many eventual Olympians, Suzy showed beaming early promise in her sport.

She was a distance…


Business Law | Operations Management

How a symbolic lawsuit took on a false narrative that lives on to this day.

Editorial Rights purchased via Adobe Stock Photos

One of the great PR injustices took place in 1994. It was Liebeck v. McDonald’s, one of the most widely recognized and highly misunderstood lawsuits in history.

Most people know it as, “That lady who spilled coffee on herself and sued McDonald’s, winning millions of dollars.”

It is seen as the ultimate example of someone looking for an easy payday. It is often lumped into the same bucket as the burglar who fell through a roof and sued, winning millions.

Public perception was warped at the expense of an elderly victim and business owners missed out on an important lesson.

This is what really happened


Life Lessons

The story of me, Kevin Swan, and his journey through ALS.

Man standing with another who is in a wheelchair.
Man standing with another who is in a wheelchair.
Myself and Kevin.

Kevin and I aren’t dating. But he did slide into my DMs. He said, “Hey what is up!”

I thought, “Wow, it’d be bad karma to ignore this one.” In his profile picture, he was proudly displayed in his full-body wheelchair, with a breathing tube in his neck. We started texting. Kevin is also a writer, which is remarkable because he can’t move his fingers. He lives just 30 minutes from me. We decided to meet.

Weeks later, I stood waiting on Kevin’s front porch. I’ll admit I felt a bit nervous. A decade ago, I’d volunteered as a swim…


Life lessons

Purge your life of ineffective routines to enter the next year with momentum.

Woman doing makeup on zoom call.
Woman doing makeup on zoom call.
Editorial rights purchased via iStock Photos

Jack Welch infamously revived General Electric by firing the bottom 10% of employees each year. What if we treated our habits like employees, promoting those with talent and removing those who hurt morale and productivity. Just imagine saying, “I’m sorry Facebook, but we terminating your employment at Me Inc.”

Talent density is an amazing thing. No, not every habit needs to be highly productive. I’ve always believed we are entitled to one “sin”, and that wasting time is a well-earned luxury. But some habits shouldn’t make it to 2022.

Being everything to everyone

One of my flaws is that I’m too nice to everyone…

Sean Kernan

Quality over quantity. That guy from Quora. Open to gigs www.seanjkernan.com

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