Worth Reading: Volume 4

It's a rainy day prefacing a long weekend here in Ottawa, and though I have a to-do list as long as my arm to get done before end of day, allow me to procrastinate just a little bit and share with you some of the gems I've read lately. Perfect leisurely patio reads for the rest of the weekend? Maybe. 

The Prettiest Girl at the Party

If you're interested at all in the inner workings of the news media, you may have noticed all the talk about Jill Abramson's departure from the New York Times this week. More than any other article I've read, this piece by Rachel Sklar really resonated with me. Beautifully written, it tapped into some of the ideas that so many people struggle with when leaving a job; whether by choice, or when the choice is made for you. Some of my favourite bits: 

Abramson was let go in this way not because of a failure of business or journalism — the point of the enterprise, lest we forget! — but because Arthur Sulzberger is himself a bad manager, and managed this situation spectacularly badly.

Your power does not come from luck. Your power comes from you, and what you invest in it every day, in the work and the sweat and the giving a damn. That is what you carry around with you, even as you walk out of your fancy top job for the last time. That is what you carry into the next thing, and there will be a next thing, because you are good and because that’s what you do. That is your capital.

Diary of a 24-hour dive bar

"Dive bars are inherently patient places." I very much wish that this patient place was in my neighbourhood, too. 

The Ghost Files

Often, when looking in a box of diplomatic records, he would find a single sheet of paper, slipped in between the others that described the rough outlines of a document that appeared to be missing. 

Storytelling Is a Magical, Ruthless Discipline

Zadie Smith on storytelling, at the Moth Ball Gala earlier this month (via The Li.st on Medium). In a time where so many people call themselves "storytellers" (I'm looking at you, marketing communications), it was nice to look at storytelling in a different light. 

Storytelling is a magical, ruthless discipline. The people who tell stories are often tempted to create a hierarchy in their lives, in which stories come before everything else, including people.

The New Playlist for Productive Work

I'm going to stop procrastinating now, and turn up some Super Mario Brothers to get things done. Until next time.