If you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong.
- Alex Bogusky
Archive for March, 2011
“Life is 10% what you make it, and 90% how you take it.”
- Irving Berlin
KIND has been on national TV 3 times this week, proving that health is in style this season and all year round!
The Early Show: Nutrition expert, Cynthia Sass, recommends choosing bars such as KIND that contain natural ingredients like fruits and nuts.
Good Day New York: Prevention editor, Mara Betsch, shared the magazine’s top picks from its annual “Healthiest Packaged Food Awards.”
NY1: Nutrition expert, Sharon Richter, shared tips for how to minimize spring allergies by eating foods like KIND that are rich in Omega-3s and fiber.
This video from Muhammad Yunus describing a joint venture with Dannon is inspiring in many ways. It explains in such simple terms how a business model can be used to achieve social benefits in a sustainable and deep way. It highlights how food companies, including major multinationals, can sincerely and effectively improve the world. And it showcases one of the greatest leaders of the 21st century: Yunus is so charismatic, so down to earth, so creative, so engaging, so effective in infecting all he touches with his vision for positive change.
The most fundamental causes of the popular uprisings across the Arab world are of course peoples’ desire for freedom and rule of law, and their disgust at corruption and oppression. Few times in history do totalitarian or authoritarian regimes successfully repress their people for more than two generations, and zero times in history do these regimes last much longer than that, relatively speaking.
And yet, what were the triggers to the Jasmine revolution? Was it Obama’s historic election and his speech in Cairo in 2009? Was it President Bush’s exhortation of democracy? Was it the Wikileaks? We know that the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi was the immediate trigger in Tunisia. But what made the population so ready to react with enormous support to kindle the historic street demonstrations and revolutions to spread across the Arab world?
Among the greatest contributors was the rise of food prices, which surged 40% in the preceding year. More acutely, staples like rice and other core grains rose exponentially. The surge in prices of essential commodities actually displaced a staggering number of people from middle class to poverty. By some estimates, 40 million Arabs descended below poverty levels over the last two years because they could not afford food to put on the table.
The biggest factor contributing to the rise in commodities and food prices is of course the growth of China. As hundreds of millions of Chinese have improved their standard of living, this has put enormous pressure on natural resources, raw materials, and food basics, among others.
It is thus ironic that the greatest trigger to demand freedom in the Arab world was not the work of great democracies like the United States or France, but, unwittingly, the growth of a China, a country under the leadership of another totalitarian one-party regime. The irony will close the cycle when the movement for openness boomerangs and catches up with Chinese repression.
Russia and China have maintained that people prize stability over freedom and that as long as the central State creates conditions for economic growth, people will be complacent and will be willing to literally sell away their rights. In fact, this very economic growth will eventually catch up with these regimes.
The following two clips from MEMRI provide a good glimpse of the cultural undercurrent and passion that captivated millions to demand freedom across the Arab world:
Body: A friend of my wife’s is getting married and I loooved the way she is going about her wedding celebration that I am sharing some of her FAQs b/c they are funny, creative and totally romantic in their refreshing approach:
WHEN’S THE BIG DAY?
[On X date]. Come to see if this happens.
WHERE’S THIS SHINDIG GONNA GO DOWN?
In Manhattan at [an environmentally conscious community event place]
AM I INVITED? HOW COME I DIDN’T GET AN INVITATION IN THE MAIL?
If you or someone in your family got an email from us directing you to this page,it means you are invited. We are not sending out paper invitations for several reasons, which we will chalk up to saving the environment (and not convenience, laziness or anything of the sort). So check your email inbox and RSVP by X, by clicking on the RSVP above. Both the website and the e-card were created by our friend, [XX], so make sure he gets an extra taco at the wedding.
DO I GET A PLUS ONE?
If you have to ask. . .then yes. Been dating someone for a few months? Sure, that’s cool. Looking to impress someone you met the week before? Bring them to the Observation Deck at Empire State Building. That’ll impress ‘em.
BOA OR FEDORA, WHAT SHOULD I WEAR?
Dress is casual chic. It’s June in New York, so it could be hot. The wedding is outside and under a tent. Guayabera’s are encouraged for men. For women, dress colorfully and comfortably. If you’re bringing a toddler, dress him/her up in something extra cute so the entire wedding can comment on it the whole night.
WHAT’S FOR DINNER?
We’ll be serving tacos, corn on the cob and various other foods. There will be vegetarian options and no pork.
AT WHICH TABLE AM I? PLEASE DON’T SAY TABLE #13.
We’ll have tables for our senior guests, and those who need to rest their feet, but most folks will be standing and/or dancing.
YES, BUT, WILL DRINKS BE SERVED?
Yes. We’ll have wine and beer and even a margarita machine. Feel free to bring your own flask if you like, you drunkard. We will also have non-alcoholic drinks and coffee.
WHAT IF I HAVE TO USE THE RESTROOM?
By all means, please do. Don’t let us stop you. The venue will have restrooms.
HOW BIG IS YOUR CAKE?
Not that big. In the spirit of a community wedding, we ask guests who are local residents to bring a dessert of their choice to share with others.
We live in a small one bedroom apartment in Manhattan. As much as we would appreciate your gifts, we just don’t have the space for them. Rather, we ask you to please make a donation to [ORG hosting them], who has graciously provided the beautiful venue for the wedding. Those of you have recently gotten married, know how huge that is. Those of you who have gotten married in New York, know how even more huge that is.
XXXX inspires New Yorkers to become environmentally responsible city dwellers through a variety of unique programs XXXX. We have enjoyed the space as neighbors and passers by on our weekly Sunday bike rides to our hockey games and are very excited to get married here.
WHAT IF I STILL WANT TO SEND YOU A GIFT?
Thanks, but no thanks.Buy us a beer somewhere down the line.
Yes, really. Drop it. DONATE.
I USUALLY STAY AT YOUR APARTMENT WHEN I VISIT NEW YORK. OK TO CRASH WITH YOU?
FINE, BE THAT WAY. ANY SPOTS YOU RECOMMEND?
Your old college roommate who said "I’m moving to New York!" on graduation day and you haven’t seen since. Or your aunt who lives in Queens who you’ve been meaning to visit for years.
MY COLLEGE ROOMMATE HAS FOUR KIDS AND LIVES IN WICHITA. MY AUNT AND I, WELL, WE HAD A FALLING OUT. ANYTHING ELSE?
The Jane Hotel (thejanenyc.com) is a great place for single occupancy (meaning very small), just $99/night and right next to the Highline Park in Chelsea. And you’ll have fellow guests joining you for brunch at Cafe Gitane in the lobby.
Hotels aren’t the only way to go though. You can also look up www.airbnb.com, or www.vrbo.com where you can book vacation rentals when people go out of town. We’ve seen a studio apt in Times Square on the site for $168/night or a private room in an apartment for $89/night. Feel free to ask us about neighborhoods.
Also look Hotels.com targetting areas such as Midtown, Chelsea, and Times Square.
And, there are likely a ton of apartment swaps on Craigslist. Williamsburg in Brooklyn may have some deals, and that is just one subway stop from the wedding venue. Also, orbitz.com, kayak.com and other travel sites might have some good deals.
ONE LAST TRY ON THE GIFTS. YOU SURE I CAN’T GET YOU AN OVERSIZED "ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE" PICTURE FRAME?
Yes. We’re fine, thanks. Please consider making a donation instead. We would be forever thankful for your contribution to making this wedding happen, and supporting an organization that means a lot to us