Design by Sawyer Pennington, Underlying photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


I have a question, but I'm concerned that once I ask it, you'll tell me it will make a good post for our website.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


And, what is wrong with that?


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


Sometimes I simply want to ask a question – not have to document the conversation.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Says the former straight-A student who, to this day, takes copious notes?


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


Yes, but at business meetings or when we're on business calls. Or when I'm talking with medical experts. Or maybe when … Never mind. I get your point. But not with my sister!


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


But, you keep telling me our telephone conversations would make great podcasts, so how is basically creating a transcript of them any different?


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


They would make great podcasts. Especially since most people could relate to my frustration of turning to you for answers, but instead getting questions. Lots of questions.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Not always.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



You're right. Sometimes I get sarcastic remarks. Or you connecting dots that I think are unconnectable. I never know what to expect!


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



Actually, you do. You know that you will get sarcastic – and pragmatic. Just like I know I will get warm and fuzzy. The good news is consistency and dependability are valuable traits. Regardless, what was the question you originally wanted to ask?


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



I was wondering why do I feel like we're as busy as we've ever been, yet at the same time, we're as unclear about where we're going as we've ever been?


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



That is an "almost" accurate description. Sometimes you know where you want to end up but need to figure out the best way to get there. Right now, we are busy keeping all options open.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



Well, that would explain why our daily posts are a mixture of real-life topics interspersed with our "commentary" on current events. And until we started doing them, I didn't realize that we'd touch on so many subjects, although I'm not surprised that you and I always seem to see things differently.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



That is an understatement. But, the challenge is we have so much existing content, and are constantly producing more, that is of interest to broader demographics than I ever expected. Layer on top, we are in an ever-changing marketplace hungry for content.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



That's been our problem ever since Neiman Marcus launched our self-published book, which at the time we thought could be the basis of a sitcom. But then the detours started, and we kept "throwing stuff against the wall" to see what would stick, and it seems everything did.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



The hardest thing for me was to let Red & Black grow organically, riding along as we traveled down different roads when part of me wanted to grab the steering wheel and drive it in a specific direction.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



You and your car analogies. But I've been shocked that you've been so patient. It seems very out of character, especially as you sign many of your emails "throttle on" and that's the last thing we're able to do.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



When you race, you are either on the throttle or the brake. You "pick a pedal" and stick to it. The purpose of braking is to slow the car down to steer through a corner (change directions), and you "throttle on" once the car is pointed in the right direction. So, that is basically what I am saying when I sign an email that way. But, right now we are coasting along.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



So keeping with your analogy, is the fact we hired an industry expert to help us identify the road to take to build the Red & Black brand as well as pitch potential partners (whether a publisher, an agency, a content provider, or even a consumer product company) like getting a new race car driver?


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



Exactly. But, in this case, we are replacing an amateur (I know my limitations) with a professional because he successfully developed entertainment franchises for Disney and Hasbro. The fact he sees the potential for Red & Black to be a "franchise" is one thing, but having the experience and industry contacts to help make it happen takes it to a new level.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io



It's funny. At first, I was confused when he used the term "franchise" as that term makes me think of buying a McDonald's, not building a brand or "franchise" like Power Rangers. But I guess every industry has its own terminology. Meanwhile, there's not much we can do right now except to let him get to work, have patience, and continue to "coast" …


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io



And, look forward to the day we can say, "Throttle on."

Want to read other columns? Here's a list.

Red assets.rebelmouse.io


I may not celebrate Rosh Hashanah by going to temple, and now that the girls are no longer home for the holiday, I don’t prepare a seder with the traditional foods . But I know and appreciate that it’s one of the most important Jewish holidays, as it’s a time for reflection on the past and hope for the future. And this year, between world events, where I feel surrounded by so much negativity, and on the personal front, with Mom’s passing, it seems more important than ever before.


Black assets.rebelmouse.io


Although Rosh Hashanah is filled with traditions, like apples dipped in honey because it is believed apples have healing properties (think of the rhyme, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”), and the honey signifies the hope for a new year that will be sweet … it is still incredibly relevant. In today’s hectic world, a contemplative holiday where you stop and think about the road you have traveled over the last year (including any wrong turns) and where you would like to go in the future may be exactly what we all need.

We wish everyone who celebrates Rosh Hashanah a happy and sweet New Year. And remember, you don’t have to be Jewish to look back and reflect … and then try to do better in the future.

Design by Sawyer Pennington, Underlying photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

So, I had to smile when Sawyer came to visit us at Mom’s estate sale. And even though I had seen her only a few hours before, I gave her a hug.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Yes, you make it rather obvious that you are warm and fuzzy. And, a hugger.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

But what made me laugh was when she greeted you by acknowledging that you weren’t a hugger. Now there’s an understatement.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

No, it is merely a fact.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I never realized, though, just how much both Natasha and Sawyer are like you. Although they begrudgingly let me hug them, they’d both be just as happy with a handshake. If that.


Black assets.rebelmouse.io

Maybe a fist bump?
Keep Reading ...Show less
Credit: Photo by Maha1450 on iStock


Red assets.rebelmouse.io


I know you celebrate Labor Day by just, well, laboring away on Red & Black. But that’s how you celebrate most holidays. For me, I always enjoy celebrating the last three-day weekend of the summer, although the challenge will be deciding what to do this Labor Day. Escape to a movie (ok, my passion’s the popcorn), go to Dunkin’ for a leisurely coffee (it always brings back memories of growing up in New York), read, or climb into bed and watch old episodes of Downton Abbey. Or, maybe “all of the above”!

But before you say anything, yes, I’m well aware that today’s more than a day off and a potential “cut-off” for wearing white (😊). It’s about honoring American workers and all the many contributions they’ve made and continue to make.


Black assets.rebelmouse.io


I know you love history, but do you know the history of Labor Day includes violence and a deadly railroad strike? And, was a way for politicians to “prove” they cared about workers? It is too bad people do not typically walk around thanking others for the work they do (imagine the impact if we did), but maybe you will get inspired by these Labor Day quotes.

And, in terms of me “laboring” today. Of course, I am. I look forward to the quiet time of weekends, especially long ones, to work on strategic projects needing large blocks of uninterrupted time or one of my passion projects. To you, it might appear as if I am “working”, but I am doing what makes me happy. Although tomorrow morning, you may not be happy when you find all my emails that will be waiting in your inbox.